The tl;dr Version:
I'm MeiLin Miranda. I started writing fiction after I literally came back from the dead. And I need your help to complete my second full-length, drenched-in-sexual-politics fantasy novel.
Son in Sorrow is the second book in the epic fantasy/family saga An Intimate History of the Greater Kingdom, the follow-up to 2010's critically acclaimed (and completely crowdfunded) Lovers and Beloveds.
SiS is entirely written and in the editing phase right now. Kickstarter funds will go toward typography, finishing the cover, paying for the editing, buying and shipping paperbacks, and maybe some tea and chocolate if I'm lucky. If I raise above the goal, it'll go toward some extra goodies including an audiobook for everyone above the $30 level (skip aaaalll the way to the end for more on that). (UPDATE! We've unlocked all of the bonuses!!)
You can read all of book one in serial form at MeiLinMiranda.com as well as learn more about me and my work.
The Long Version:
About the series: Set in a Victorianesque world of magic, sexuality, political intrigue and military conquest, IHGK tells the story of Prince Temmin of Tremont and his family from his coming of age to inheriting the throne, when he must choose between the kingdom's glory or its soul.
The series explores politics, sex, colonialism, religion, power and redemption in a rich, fully realized world where even though magic exists and gods manifest themselves, not everyone believes in them. The series has adult content, especially in book one, but goes way beyond erotica in its realism and consequences.
About book one, Lovers and Beloveds: When eighteen-year-old Prince Temmin comes of age and joins his father's court, he's unprepared for its politics, assassins and sexual intrigues--and even more unprepared for the King's immortal advisor Teacher, the holder of the royal family's hidden magic. Teacher becomes Temmin's tutor, his lessons contained in a magic book. Through it, Temmin experiences everything each story's characters do, and he's forced to confront serious mistakes in the kingdom's--and his own--past.
His present is no easier. He's falling for beautiful twins--brother and sister--who are the human hosts of the gods of love and desire called the Lovers. Being with them is more than sex; it's a religious calling. But an ancient prophecy says if Temmin heeds the Lovers' call it may spell the end of the monarchy, and his father fights him every step of the way.
Temmin must choose: Serve the Lovers and lose his father--and possibly the kingdom--or serve the King and risk the wrath of the Gods.
About book two, Son in Sorrow: Two years ago, Prince Temmin risked everything when he took Supplicancy in the Lovers' Temple. His father opposed him, swearing it would fulfill a prophecy signalling the end of the monarchy. For his disobedience, Temmin is now estranged from his family.
He's beginning to wonder if he made the right choice. Temple life is filled with love both physical and spiritual. But exclusive, possessive love is forbidden and Temmin's love is the most forbidden of all: Allis, the human host of the goddess Neya. Temmin knows he must conquer his emotions or face the potentially deadly fury of the Lovers, but his own need and pride stand in his way.
Then a murder strikes at Temmin's very soul. He turns to the magic book of his ancestors, searching for answers to his desire for revenge, and for a woman he mustn't love.
Set in a Victorianesque world of magic, sexuality, political intrigue and military conquest, "Son in Sorrow" is the second book in the epic fantasy series "An Intimate History of the Greater Kingdom."
About MeiLin Miranda: MeiLin is a happily former radio/TV journalist with 30+ years of experience writing nonfiction. Death convinced her it was time to start writing fiction after a lifetime of yearning; she suffered a cardiac arrest in 2006 during a critical illness and was shocked back to life (and yes, she remembers being dead). IHGK came into being in late 2007, and she began posting its draft in serial form on the web in early 2008. To her surprise, it took off; at one point, two thousand people a day were reading IHGK. In 2009 she realized it wasn't sustainable as a serial; she took it down, solicited support from her fans, and raised $2500 (pre-Kickstarter) to turn the serial into books.
What critics say about book one:
"2010 Top 6 Indie Fantasy Book ... A+...I would definitely urge you to try this one." -- Liviu Suciu, Fantasy Book Critic blog
"Everything I adore in high fantasy--lush worldbuilding, political intrigue, and compelling characters--combined with something I rarely find in high fantasy--intelligent, well-written, relevant sex. MeiLin Miranda's a damn fine writer and definitely one I'll be keeping my eye on in the future!" -- M.K. Hobson, author of The Native Star
"If George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series captures the gritty realism of medieval history, Lovers and Beloveds reveals the intimate and personal dynamics of power in aristocracies. ... The prose is lush and beautiful...an intelligent, insightful, and beautiful fantasy novel. I highly recommend Lovers and Beloveds. The term 'fantasy erotica' can’t describe the depth of this work." -- Frida Fantastic, Indie Speculative Fantasy Reviews blog
"[C]aptivating - almost like an anthropological study of sex, identity, gender, relationships, power, fetish, etc. Unlike your normal smut novel or porn piece, the sex is heart-breakingly realistic, full of warts and rough edges. ... Overall Rating: 4.5 stars. Thought-provoking, well-written, emotionally powerful - but definitely not for the kiddies!" -- Maria T. Violante, Write, Read, Review blog
If we exceed the goal, or: Hello, tl;dr people!
If we exceed the goal by $500, I will rewrite-to-canon the prequel stories of Temmin's childhood; everyone at $30 and above will get a free ebook copy. -- Done!
If we exceed the goal by $1000, I will record the book one audiobook sooner than expected (yay recording equipment!) and give everyone at $30 and above a free full copy instead of making them wait as it serializes in podcast. -- Done!
If I make more than $1000 over the goal I'll be able to hire help to complete the world map and everyone at every level will get a high-res digital copy. If I make WAY more, I will print posters for everyone at $60 and over. -- Done and done!!
New bonus! If I make more than $2,000 over the goal ($3,500), I'll give donors from $30-99 their choice of one of the high-res character studies drawn by Alice Fox: Temmin, Teacher, Allis and Issak, Harsin, Ansella, Sedra, Ellika, Anda, Connin or Maeve (though the spelling of Maeve's name has changed from the character study). Backers $100 and up will get the full set--all ten! -- Done!!!
Holy carp, we funded in four days!!! And all bonuses unlocked!
Those who haven't backed me: The rewards packages are now ridiculously awesome. Please still consider kicking to the project. Thank you for reading this far!
I provide my ebooks in epub (Nook), mobi (Kindle), LRF (Sony) and PDF (everybody). Backers will be given coupons for books one and two to download them free on my site, and all four formats are available in the one "purchase."
I also make my books DRM-free, so if someone doesn't have a standard e-reader they could run it through software like Calibre and get the format they wanted/needed. I encourage it! ^_^
In the course of a weeks-long critical illness, I had a cardiac arrest and died, alone in my hospital room. They brought me back after about 45 seconds, and I had a hard time accepting that I was alive. I've written nonfiction professionally for 30 years, but all that time I really wanted to be writing fiction and was afraid to for many different reasons. Dying brought me to my senses. I started writing when I started feeling human again, and I've never stopped.
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