Chase was twelve the first time he arrived in a strange land where dark, ominous clouds never move, ancient trees violently spring to life during Darkness, and people seem to live without emotion. Doctors tell him they’re hallucinations, but he knows his visits are real. She’s there-Sash-and she’s more real than anyone he’s ever known.
His visits stop but, as years pass, the memories haunt Chase. Without warning, the young man suddenly finds himself again in a world called Krymzyn. Arriving during Darkness, he’s rescued from death by the extraordinary, beautiful but terrifying young woman he first met when he was twelve.
When Chase is thrust into the war of balance against vile creatures who threaten all who live there, Sash helps him understand his purpose in Krymzyn. A dark secret from the beginning of time reveals he might be able to stay there forever. To prove he belongs in Krymzyn and be with the only woman he can ever love, Chase will have to risk his own life in the ultimate battle.
“Murkovin!” a roaring male voice echoes through the hills.
Rain plummets from the sky, blackened storm clouds churn in place, and my eyes try to adjust to Darkness. I spin to the shout behind me, immediately knowing I’m on the same hill as I’d been when I was twelve. There’s not a doubt in my mind.
Needles race up my spine when I see the shirtless creature crouched at the base of the hill. Tall with black veins bulging from ghostly white skin, the beast of a man scans the terrain. Wearing only black leathery pants, firm ridges of muscle lining his stomach and chest, he wildly swings a metal spear in one hand.
His head snaps to me. Long black hair twined with white whips across his face while his empty hand slashes the air in front of him. When his eyes touch mine, shadowy sockets flare blood red. The brute charges up the hill at me.
I lurch the other way and sprint into the meadow below. A torrent of rain slams against my skin as deafening creaks pierce the air. I see the flailing tree in front of me and try to stop, but my bare feet slip across the slick wet grass.
A glowing red limb lashes at me, slams into my chest, and hurls me to the ground. As the branch smashes into me again, I jerk my hands up in defense. Blood instantly spurts from gashes torn into my face, neck, and arms. Rolling across the grass, I frantically try to get out of its reach.
When I stop a few feet away, landing flat on my back, I stare straight up. A monstrous bough high above flexes into a fisted hand. I try to jump to my feet but a blur scoops me from the ground. As we speed away from the tree, silky wisps of black and scarlet brush across my face. A thunderous slam vibrates from behind us, the wooden fist pounding into the ground where, a moment earlier, my body would have been.
Into the valley we race until we’re outside the range of groping limbs. After we slide to a stop, I’m gently set on the grass. I look up to see the girl I met when I was twelve standing over me—the girl called Sash.
Her thin arms are barbed with muscular detail as she tightly grasps her spear. Metallic points, steel spikes sticking out the top of a pack slung over her shoulder, flash from behind her head. She peers down at me through radiant amber eyes.
“Are you injured?” she growls, silver raindrops beading down her hair.
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BC Powell is a fantasy author from Los Angeles, CA. "Krymzyn" is his debut science fiction fantasy novel, the first book in a series titled "The Journals of Krymzyn."
Powell has a diverse background, having held several creative positions in the entertainment industry, including executive roles at ABC-TV and Technicolor. In recent years, he's authored several non-fiction works, primarily educational books and training programs for trading the financial markets. He dual majored in journalism and philosophy at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.
Writing fiction has been his lifelong passion and goal. "Krymzyn" is his first published novel and represents, in his words, "finally finding the story I want to tell with characters that are able to bring that story to life." He's an avid reader and lists Ernest Hemingway, Frank L. Herbert, Stephen King, Jane Austen, and Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. as his favorite authors.
Brad, as he prefers to go by in personal communication, lives with his longtime girlfriend, three sons from a previous marriage, and their rescue dog and cat. He enjoys hiking, ocean kayaking, spending time at Southern California beaches, movies, and reading.
Where did the idea for “Krymzyn” come from?
I was working on another fantasy novel I’ll eventually finish after I complete this series. I often look at photos to describe characters as I write, so I was browsing pictures on the Internet. I stumbled across a photo that really hit me in the pit of my stomach and made me ask the question, “What would make a person have that expression on their face?” It was a close-up of a young woman who looked sad but angry at the same time, incredibly lonely, and either terrified or terrifying—I couldn’t figure out which. As I tried to imagine the emotions behind that facial expression, the world of Krymzyn came together in my mind. I quickly knew who the characters were, their struggles and triumphs, and immediately put the other manuscript aside and started writing. As the story evolved, my reaction was, “This is the story I always wanted to tell,” which is the most incredible feeling a writer can have.
What comes first for you: story or character?
Characters, without a doubt. I think so much of the story evolves naturally by knowing your characters in depth. Their reactions to different situations have to be consistent with who they are, and future events develop out of that. I don’t really do more than a general outline of key events in the story before I sit and write, but I do know everything there is to know about the characters and their lives. This allows the story to flow spontaneously because of who they are and progress because of how they react not only to the events in the story, but to one another. Nothing is more important to me than the emotional attachment I hope the reader feels for the characters, so the characters’ emotions are always integral to the story.
What was the hardest part of writing this book?
Every minor detail in the world of Krymzyn had to eventually come together in a coherent manner so that the world and people there have valid reasons to be the way they are. There are several events, both on Earth and in Krymzyn, that will come back in later books of the series, so I had to track all of those and make sure I didn’t unknowingly leave a “gotcha” that messes me up in a later book. It was a bit of a logistical nightmare for both me and my editor, Mickey Reed, who did a great job of paying attention to these details.
You have a truly striking cover. Who was the designer and how did you choose that person?
I saw the portfolio of a UK-based designer named Ravven on Deviant Art and instantly fell in love with her work. I wanted this cover to have a surreal feeling with certain aspects of fantasy, but at the same time, evoke enough realism that it didn’t appear adolescent. Ravven’s covers have amazing detail while always maintaining a central point of focus that really draws me in. As we started on the cover, I quickly learned that Ravven is fantastic to work with and immerses herself in the project. She just completed the cover for the second book and it blew me away. http://www.ravven.com for those interested in her work.
What would you say sets this novel apart from others in the genre?
I really believe the story is fresh and something we haven’t seen before, partially because the world is unlike any other. There are certainly elements of familiarity, but in the end, the world itself is unique. That allows the story, conflict, and character arcs to evolve in a way that is new and different. Challenges the characters face are sometimes inherent to Krymzyn because of the way the world is, while other struggles are more universal. I honestly think both the story and the world are unlike anything readers have experienced before, and that will become even more evident in future books.
What do readers who continue with the series have to look forward to?
I’ll try to answer that without giving away too much or spoiling the first book. The big unanswered question is, “Why was our protagonist taken to Krymzyn in the first place?” Throughout the series, that question will gradually be answered in a way I don’t think readers have ever seen or could even imagine. There’s a huge twist about two-thirds of the way through the series that, I hope, is just kind of mind-boggling and explains why everything has happened the way it has. We’ll also see a much more in-depth look at the antagonist and what drives his actions as well as an expansion of the world of Krymzyn. Not only what the world encompasses, but what the world really is and why it exists. And, of course, we’ll see a much more intimate look at the true depth of the love and connection between our heroine and hero.