The Grey Eyed Storm:
The Occuli Series , Book 1
by Christie M. Stenzel Genre: Fantasy
Have you ever received shocking news that turned your life upside down? Would you love to have magical powers based upon the color of your eyes?
Imagine the shock of being eighteen year old Remy Verbetta and finding out that you are not 'human' and also are not from this 'world'.
Remy’s life is turned upside down when she suddenly finds out her entire life has been a lie. Another 'world' is living and breathing along side our own, a kind of alternate dimension.
On her eighteenth birthday, Remy finds out that she is not 'human', but is actually a member of an ancient and almost extinct race called the Occuli. Each Occuli has different magical powers based solely on their eye color.
This fictional, fantasy novel, follows Remy on a journey of self discovery, magic, mystery, romance and betrayal, as she tries to figure out a way not only to survive, but also find a way back to her true home and save the Occuli from extinction!
(Recommended for ages 16+)
**2016 Readers' Favorite BRONZE MEDAL WINNER for BEST FANTASY BOOK!!!
**OFFICIAL FANTASY SELECTION - 2015 New Apple Book Awards for Excellence in Independent Publishing!!!
**Awarded 2016 BOOK OF THE YEAR from Books Go Social.com!!
"The next movie from a well written fantasy book. Harry Potter and Twilight fans get ready for the Grey Eyed Storm" by Michelle Knox
"RIVETING FROM START TO FINISH!!" by T.D.
The night of my eighteenth birthday, I also began sleep walking yet again. This time, I couldn’t find a way to joke about it or even rationalize it. Who sleep walks to their own mother’s grave? Mama’s grave was decorated, which was strange unless dad traveled all the way back here. I wasn’t even sure how I walked all the way here in pajamas in the middle of the night. My stomach turned and I ran from my mother’s grave and lost the small piece of birthday cake I had consumed. Violets, all over Mama’s grave. Why not, jasmine, I wondered. They were her favorite. Why did they have to be the flower I saw in my vision? I heard a ringing noise and it roused me from my queries; it was my cell phone. Had I jammed it in my pocket before I left?
“Rubes,” I said, not even looking at the caller ID.
“I am so glad you answered! What the hell happened?” she demanded.
I felt dazed and my stomach began to turn again.
“What?” I asked slowly, my voice sounding tight and far away.
“Where are you?”
I closed my eyes and I let the crystal tears fall. Dad said Mama began to act unusual around her eighteenth birthday and he had joked that I would adhere to the family curse. He couldn’t be more right. I was a crazy person too.
“I’m at my mother’s grave,” I squeaked.
“How did you make it all the way there?!” she demanded fearfully.
“I don’t know! I just….”I sobbed.
Twigs and branches cracked behind me and I felt another wave of nausea wash over me. I smelled a foul odor and I saw the trees wiggling as if something or someone was advancing.
“There’s somebody here…” I whispered.
“I’m coming! Don’t worry. I’m running out the door right now, okay? Just hang tight, love.” I could hear a thrashing around and I knew Ruby was grabbing her purse and keys and fumbling out the door.
I heard a low growl, then I saw a pair of yellow eyes, and the pungent odor became stronger, nauseatingly so. “Ruby, hurry!”
I backed up towards my mother’s grave, accidentally crushing the violets beneath my bare, bloody feet. What had I done? Had I crawled here? My hands and feet were gashed open and gushing blood. I was covered in mud and leaves, head to toe. I began to cry harder from confusion and fear. What kind of person sleep walks miles in the middle of the night and awakens to find themselves bloody and dirty in front of their own mother’s grave? I waited for Ruby as I watched the yellow eyes watching me. Seconds passed by with my heart thumping so loudly I felt it was audible as it resounded in my own ears.
“I’m driving like ninety sweetie, just relax!!”
“I’m serious, there’s something here and it’s watching me-“
The next sentence died in my throat before I could even utter it. The yellow eyes shifted and were somehow much higher in the trees, as if whatever was watching me was initially crouched down and was now fully standing up. The sound of tires squealing alerted me to Ruby’s Ford Ranger pulling up.
“How did you get here so quickly?” I mumbled.
“Zias!” she screamed into the forest as she jumped out of the truck. I looked at her, eyes wide. She stomped forward angrily. “Zias! Dammit! You’re scaring her half to death! Get out here now!”
Ruby then whirled around to face me.
“Happy 18th, sweets! You’re now worthy of some to die for secrets....”
Through Golden Eyes:
The Occuli 1.5, Zias' Story
A Golden-eyed, or an "Aureus", has one sole purpose in life: to protect. Raised from children to be bodyguards, these Occuli are both the fastest and strongest and are commonly used as fierce weapons.
Frequently they are not what they seem however, as they can be tempted by too much power and control over those they protect. This can lead them down a dark and dangerous path.
This supplement to Book One of the Occuli series, gives the reader a more intimate look at the character of Zias. In this story the reader is taken through Zias' personal journal, giving his perspective on the journey so far with Remy and the other Occuli. He tells the story through his eyes about his struggle to remember his past and break from traditions and curses, while putting it all on the line for the love of his life, Remy Verbetta.
THE VIOLET EYED:
The Occuli, Book 2
This tale of mystery, romance, intrigue and deceit, The Violet Eyed: The Occuli, Book Two, follows Remy's sister Violet through her tragic life. As we delve into secrets of the past, present and future and explore Violet's relationships, we learn about her struggles against the darkness, as she learns who and what she truly is, and that her entire life has also been a lie. A unique breed of Occuli, Violet's eyes match her namesake. But being cursed from birth, will she find the strength to defeat the darkness within and around her and overcome her nature or will she end up succumbing to the darkness?
**COMING IN DECEMBER 2016!!!**
Irresolute Amber Eyes
The Occuli, Book 3
**Releasing in December 2016**
Book Three of the Occuli Series picks up where Book One left off. Remy and the other Occuli have just discovered that they were able to go back in time and are trying to determine exactly what the consequences of those actions are. As the book progresses, it becomes apparent that a Golden-Eyed has now "turned Amber" and the Occuli family and friends must come to terms with what this means and what will be the end result....
Writing and reading are my passions! My dream to be a writer began when, as a five year old child, I would ask my mother to write down the stories I would make up about talking dogs.
Since growing up and becoming further educated with a Bachelor's Degree in English (I have an affinity for classic literature), a degree in Ultrasound and soon to be, a Master's Degree in Leadership, I have begun to pursue that dream in hopes of one day making it my career. I have many interests and ideas so my ultimate goal is to release works of fiction in multiple genres. Fantasy will always be my first love however as I have always had an intense imagination that threatens to inundate me if not expelled onto paper.
Aside from writing, I enjoy physical activities like running and yoga. I am blessed to have an amazing family, close friends and two beloved canine companions.
More information on the Occuli book series is available on my series website at www.theocculi.com. I also have an author website at: www.info49133.wix.com/christiemstenzel or you can follow me on Twitter at @CStenzelWriter or on my Facebook Fan Page at Christie Stenzel: Author.