Why Women’s Fiction and Magical Realism Pair So Well

I’m celebrating today, RELEASE DAY for my new women’s fiction and magical realism novel, The Invisibles. To celebrate, I’ve published an article in the online magazine Women Writers, Women’s Books. It’s about the naturalness of supernatural elements in women’s fiction. Magical realism is one form, and my favorite, for its blending of the mundane with the marvelous. My new novel does that through the introduction of invisible people in The Room Over There into the everyday world of sisters Saffron and Elinor, as they take possession of a rundown, haunted cottage on the northern Italian coast.

This story of two sisters, a ghost, and family secrets plus a bookish mystery is close to my heart. It was begun in National Novel Writing Month. Inspired to celebrate sibling relationships by the loss of my own wonderful brother, I began the book as a form of tribute for him and a way of handling my grief. I dedicated this tale of sisterhood to my brother because siblings are forever and if they’re lucky enough, they understand and appreciate that. The spirits in my book are a testament to the foreverness of love and loving relationships. The ghosts are an embodiment of love’s lasting truth and importance in our lives.

A tale of sisterhood and the supernatural, perfect for fans of Mary Ellen Taylor and Barbara O’Neal.

An excerpt — the ghost of Shelley’s first appearance to Saffron:

She was about to fall back asleep when, despite the coolness, electric prickles sizzled up her arms and the dark came unmistakably alive.
“I know you,” she said aloud, sitting up and turning on the light. “You can’t hide.”
But of course, he could. Any Invisible could hide, though most wanted her help, so what was the point of hiding?
She fumbled around on the bedside table. Trying to remember the lamp and where the switch was, she touched the leather cover of the book of Shelley’s poems. The last verse she had read before falling asleep now came to mind.
In the golden lightning of the sunken sun, o’er which clouds are bright’ning, thou dost float and run; like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun.
I am an unbodied joy.
She whispered back, finishing the line. “. . . whose race is just begun?”
Shelley had been dead for more than a century. Why hadn’t he moved on to The Room Over There? Invisibles had to move on, didn’t they? Yet she felt him here, breathing, as if his breath blew gently on her forehead. She couldn’t see him in the dark, but maybe if she could turn on the light.
Her skin crawled. She reached farther over and found the light switch. In the suddenly bright room, she saw a misty form in midair. Sitting up now, she waited to see what he’d do.
The poet’s pale, round face became clear.
She spoke again. “A Poet hidden in the light of thought, singing hymns unbidden.”
But you are bidding me to come.
“Am I?” How was she calling Shelley to come to her?
Shake your chains to earth like dew.
“But they’re not mine. Ellie’s the one with chains!” She felt a subtle weight join her on the bed. She gasped.
“What do you want?”
Peace between my girls.

Ebook or paperback available on Amazon.

Happy pub day, Saffron and Elinor!