How does a world equipped with bows, arrows and catapults, where steam power is just beginning to replace horses and sailing ships, avert a conquest from beyond the stars? Prince Regilius has been engineered to combat the Dalthin, a predatory alien species that enslaves worlds telepathically, and to do so he must unite his people. But when his mother murders his father, the land descends into chaos and his task may prove impossible. Faced with slaying the one who gave him life in order to protect his world, he seeks a better way. Set in a vast and varied land where telepaths and those with unusual mental abilities tip the course of events, Awakening goes to the heart of family, friendship and betrayal.
Reg was awash with faces. Their stories came upon him like a flood. Wave followed wave and inundated him to the point of drowning. These were not simply imaginings. They were beyond any concepts he had ever known and many were contrary to his way of thinking. As he fought to retain stable footing in what was rapidly becoming a maelstrom of misery and despair, he grew uncomfortably aware of the vividness and intensely personal feeling each experience brought. These were not other lives. Each seemed to be his own. It was he, Regilius Tonopath, who had been beaten, who drank, who failed and despaired. It was he, the heir to the throne of Ydron, who was the robber, the washerwoman, the child. On one hand, he knew this could not be, and contrarily he recalled each life with the clarity and certitude with which he knew each step and turning of the palace corridors.
Beneath this misery, simmering steadily to the surface, arose ever new and alien thoughts. Immersed as he was in these lives, his perceptions of things familiar were changing. Soldiers, his lifelong protectors, were not to be trusted, but rather, feared. No longer guardians and enforcers of the law, they were the source of brutality and kidnappers of husbands and children. Women hid themselves from the helmet and shield of the throne.
It did not pay to be successful outside the palace walls. Any surpluses or gains were sure to be confiscated. One could never quite pay one’s tax. The collector made sure of it. When one had managed to acquire a little more than one’s customary lot, a visit from the taxman was inevitable. Since none ever knew how the news got out, each suspected his neighbor. It probably was true spies were everywhere. A word in the right ear would likely put food in an empty belly, so distrust abounded.
Reg’s head hurt and he trembled as he drove through the horror. He could not believe any of this could be true in the land his family ruled, but the images were relentless. This flight from danger had become a plunge into reality. He was unprepared for and unable to come to terms with what each moment drove home. Had he been so sheltered he could not see his world as it was?
Somehow—he knew not by what providence—the roadster hurtled on without incident. Even when he tried, he could barely focus on his surroundings. Carts, streets, banners, men, women and children all blurred into a stream, while the dreams or revelations—he could not say which—bombarded him until he was lost in the confusion. He no longer knew where he was, yet the car careened onward.
Eventually he passed through the city’s outermost wall. He did not remember the gate or the guards, but the density of outer danYdron thinned into scattered farms and villages and his head began to clear. He breathed deeply, with only dim recollection of his purpose as the cacophony of sights and sounds receded. Like a badly beaten fighter trying to see through senses numbed by countless blows, staggering toward his corner and his seconds for relief, Reg drove westward. Familiarity kept him on his path, though his mind was still dazed, unaware of the road spinning under the wheels and away behind him.
Everyone who touches you transforms you, if only a little. But if you enter their minds, think what they have thought, in effect do what they have done, how complete will that transformation be?
If he had been born an ordinary man, his family would be safe–safe as anyone can be in a land torn apart by war. It is his singular gift, however, that causes his wife and children to be imprisoned and held hostage and him to be used as a tool. Caught up in a struggle between opposing warlords and refusing to play the game, Peniff elects to take the moral high road. This is the story of a man, in all other ways ordinary, rising above his fears to do what he must. Can he free his family before his betrayal comes to light? Moreover, what will he become before his journey is over?
In a world facing two divergent futures—eventual freedom or complete domination—too many unmade decisions cloud the yet-to-be. Those who can see even a tiny portion of the inevitable wield great power.
In this world where young and old, rich or poor, are at the mercy of armed marauders and the armies of the powerful, a warlord’s wrath forces a mother and daughter to flee for their lives. Despite being prescient, they cannot foresee all that lies ahead. Quickly separated, their every effort centers around reunion and survival. Without losing sight of these goals, one of them foresees that, if she travels to the conflict’s center and lends support to one of the two major powers, she has the ability to influence the final outcome.
Foretellers, the third volume of The Ydron Saga, is the second book of Awakening’s prequel trilogy.
Heroic battles are not always won by the mighty. There are times when even the least likely among us play decisive rolls. Less able physically than anyone he knows, but paranormally unique, Bardik is recruited by a pair of psychics in the hope that, by combining his talent with theirs, they can turn looming defeat into victory.
In this, the concluding chapter to The Ydron Saga, a young man who has lost the use of his legs—someone whom earthly culture labels paraplegic—agrees to lend his telekinetic talents to the effort to bring down a tyrannical warlord.
Raymond Bolton lives near Portland, Oregon with his wife, Toni, and their two cats, Georgie & Sophia.
Regarding his debut novel, Awakening, multiple Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author, Mike Resnick says, “In Awakening, Raymond Bolton presents us with an intricate and interesting problem, characters you care for, aliens who are alien, and a carefully-thought-out future.”
Matthew J. Pallamary, author of Land Without Evil and Spirit Matters said, “Raymond Bolton’s genre shattering Awakening is a skillfully woven hybrid of science fiction and fantasy that brings cultural conflict to a whole new, thoroughly believable level that goes straight to the heart of what really matters.”
International award-winning author of the Daimones Trilogy, Massimo Marino, endorsed Awakening, saying, “Bolton navigates through the plot lines and the mixed genres (Science Fiction but not exactly, Fantasy but not entirely, Paranormal but not completely) with the clear gesture of the conductor of a large orchestra. A new voice and author who is bound to grow a faithful readership.”
Finally, Britain’s BookViral.com states, “it’s a grand debut. An ambitious and well considered SF crossover [that] breathes originality into the genre.”
Raymond’s goal is to craft gripping stories about the human condition, whether they are set here or another world. He has written award-winning poetry and four novels. Awakening, an epic, was released in January, 2014, and Thought Gazer, an adventure and first volume of a prequel trilogy, was released on January 1, 2015. The third in the series, Foretellers, came out on March 1 , 2016. The trilogy’s conclusion, entitled Triad, aired January 1, 2017. Awakening was recently translated into Spanish and was released as El despertar – La saga de Ydron on July 1, 2015. Amazon has already listed El despertar as the Number One New Release in Ciencia Ficción.