Book Jacket

 

rank 3013
word count 18924
date submitted 22.05.2012
date updated 04.02.2013
genres: Fiction, Romance, Fantasy
classification: moderate
incomplete

Healer's Touch

Deb E Howell

A girl whose power to heal also brings death fights to keep her freedom.

 

Llew has a gift. Her body heals itself from any injury—but at a cost to anyone nearby.

In a small country ignorant of magic, freeing oneself from the hangman’s noose isn’t a good look. After dying and coming back thrice, Llew drops from the gallows into the hands of Jonas: the man carrying the knife with the power to kill her—permanently.

The last of his warrior race, Jonas is surrounded by the ghosts of his loved ones. At his side, the cursed knife that took their lives. Jonas has learned the hard way that caring for others means their death.

Jealousy of his half-brother’s celebrated strength and speed drove Braph to create the device that gives him the power to perform magic, any magic. But it needs fuel—the blood of a healer ...

Healer's Touch is now available for purchase in electronic and paperback editions. On Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and coming soon from other distribution channels...

 
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tags

1800s, abilities, action, adventure, fantasy romance, fast paced, forbidden love, knife, love, magic, magic realism, magician, paranormal, quest, roma...

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20 comments

 

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lhleece wrote 659 days ago

You have to love those cliff-hanger endings! This one certainly leaves you on the edge of your seat (or couch, as the case may be). I found your story through the forums: I would stop reading.... now (or whatver it's called). Only, after I read the beginning, I knew I didn't want to stop reading. I wanted to know what happened. A couple of hours and 15 chapters later... well, is there any more?

This is a very well constructed and thought out tale. You have a fantastic combination of mystery, romance, adventure, passion, magic... that just leaves me wanting to read on. The language you have used and the level of detail and description instantly places me, as a reader, in the world surrounding your characters.

Llew is a battler, instantly loveable, her struggle to come to grips with who she is, what she can do and what it holds for her future keeps us captivated from beginning to end. Her interactions with all characters are believable and realistic for the setting and environment you have constructed.

I would love to know more about the history beween Jonas and Braph (I quite like the names by the way) and again, more about the history between the healers and those who set out to kill them. You've written that the true cause of the rift is lost in the history but Braph appears to have some interesting facts up his sleeve!

I hope you don't mind, I picked out a couple of things that caught my attention as I was reading:

Chapter 3
Through (sheer) force of will

Chapter 6
And her new (friend) would kill her if he ever found out

Chapter 8
The meadow was (eerily) silent

“What in the hell happened last night?” – I would probably omit ‘in’

Llew admits she may have died ‘again’ and you have both Aris and Jonas sounding shocked though she says something similar to Jonas in the meadow/the night before…

Chapter 13
Alvaro had swapped his wide-brimmed hat for a top hat to (match) his grey suit…

Chapter 15
“Nothing? Doesn’t look like nothing to me. Hello, Llew?” He eyed her, wrapped up in a sheet, when (he?) reached them.

This is a well constructed and captivating story and I wish you all the best with it. If you happen to post more, please let me know, otherwise, I shall have to look out for it on bookshelves :-)

Laura
'Guardian'

Tod Schneider wrote 661 days ago

Wow, this is great stuff! You don't drop a beat. Your protagonist is engaging and the storyline just leaps right along. this one will move quickly up the charts!
Tod
http://authonomy.com/books/40646/the-lost-wink/

Sonya Lano wrote 681 days ago

I love this! I love the concept, the writing, the action, the characters, the romance, the tension, the - just everything :-) You'll get my more detailed comments on Jottify when I get the chance to read chapters 13 to 15, but I just wanted to share here how great this novel is on every level, every detail, every facet...
Okay, gush session over, but it's all true ;-)

Staz wrote 298 days ago

I absolutely love the line - In sepia trousers and off white linen shirt she blended in with the evening's wildlife!!!!!

shade18 wrote 520 days ago

hey just wondering if you could help me i'm new to this and was wondering how do you read more of the chapters? due to that this book is amazing and i would like to read more of it please and thank you

DesiS. wrote 542 days ago

I really enjoyed reading your story. It was well paced, with interesting characters I could connect with. Good hooks at the end of the chapters kept me wanting to read more. I see in your profile that this is due to be published in 2013 and would very much like to read the rest. Please let me know when as I am going to be a buyer!

Overall this was very well polished, however in Chapter 2, I was confused by...
"Her new shirts were not filthy and one snagged on a stray nail sticking out from a beam. She threw them aside in frustration and yelped as her knuckle struck the support beam above her." Did this mean she has taken off her shirt and now crawling in the dirt w/o a shirt on? Apparently not from the behavior of other characters. But this is what it read like to me.
Chapter 5- "...Llew suddenly realized Jonas was (no?) longer with her."- just a minor typo.

I hope this was helpful- and congratulations on getting this published- it deserves to be. 5 stars and backed. Desi.

CARite wrote 560 days ago

I like it...I'll look for it on shelves!

CADreilling/The Line

radiance wrote 576 days ago

Club Grimoire Critique

My initial thought upon reading the first paragraph was along the lines of, "oh dear, more cursing." However, after reading more, I fell into the flow of the book and started enjoying it. I would say your strongest point is your description of action. It flowed very naturally and vividly. Also, you did a very good job of setting the scene. Cheer comes to life in just the first chapter. However, your writing seems to get a bit too casual at times. The tone is a definite advantage nine times out of ten, but there are still those moments where it feels out of place. Specifically, "...she stuck to her usual white linen - or off-white linen, to be more precise." I feel that simply saying "off-white linen" right out would be better in that situation, where no one is talking. One other thing I might change is the cursing at the beginning, but that is probably just me being too proper for my own good, so feel free to disregard that bit of advice completely.
Sincerely,
Cody

Geddy25 wrote 580 days ago

Just read some of this and thought it was great. Really good idea of the healing process etc.
Your writing flows beautifully and paints a vivid picture of the action.
I found a couple of things I wasn't sure on - I may be wrong.
"The pair of them was hopping side to side" - shouldn't that be "were hopping"?
"...she only needed what she needed..." - Only took what she needed?
reveling - I think it is spelt "revelling"
Hope that helps.
Good luck with this!
Mike.
(Way Back To Devil's Mountain)

Su Dan wrote 592 days ago

you use narrative very well indeed to relay your tale with great ease and skill...
backed...
read SEASONS...

D.J.Milne wrote 600 days ago

Hi Deb
I have read your first 2 chapters and here are my comments.
You have created a very unusual and at times compelling idea and character with Llew. The ability to heal and draw on other peoples life energy to the point of death is great. Your descriptive writing is very detailed and as a reader I got a great feel for the town of Cheer.
You say in your Tags for the book beside the pitch that it is in the 1800's. I would have liked this info in the first chapter somewhere. Had I not seen this in your tag I would have struggled to know when this was set, it could have been some dystopian future for all I could tell.
You have a fantastic descriptive style, but at times you overdo the adjectives. You paint a sordid and violent place where the prostitution of women is rife and young girls, even dressed as boys face sexual violence easily. Even with the friend of Kynas this was a feature of the relationship.
At the end of chapter one the die is cast with Llew being accused of murder and she needs to get out of town.. The meeting with Jonas after trying to steal his knife and hitching a ride in the cart is excellent, and a nice way of bonding the group along with Alvero.

In chapter two the character of Barth arrives on the scene with his thunder stick on a quest to get to Cheer. Llew's final capture and exposure as a young woman paves the way for the public hanging.

A fine read and it will lead to a fine story I am sure. But as I know from my book, I feel your chapters are too long and need shortening, not always easy to do
Good luck with this unusual tale,.
Starred and on my watch list.
D.J
The Ghost Shirt

GCleare wrote 610 days ago

Healer’s Touch
There are couple of things in the pitch that could use tweaking. I don’t know what this means: “a good look.” And you mention the knife twice..seems like once would be better. “caring for others” means taking care of others, I think maybe you want to say “loving others”?
Great dramatic opening, a real attention-getter. The washing in the stream scene could be cut shorter, most of it is details that don’t advance the story. (where she washes, that the sediment is warm, etc.) I would like to know more about this thigh-high hovel though…what does it look like? Did she build it herself? How big is it? What’s it made of? The scene in the marketplace is fun and informative. Llew is a good character, I like her. Very promising start to this piece! Good luck with it, I’ll bet you’ll do well on Authonomy there are lots of fantasy fans on the site.
~ Gail SECRETS WE KEEP

Lenny Banks wrote 611 days ago

Hi Deb, I read chapter 5. This is a most interesting story and had me facinated. I would imagine the stage as you described what was happening. I loved that you used the premise of a girl pretending to be a guy and didn't hide anything behind sexism and equality, it was very earthy. Your characters are strong and you had a good grip on where you wanted the story to play. Good Luck with this.

kindest Regards and best Wishes
Lenny Banks - Tide and Time: At The Rock.

SteveSeven wrote 634 days ago

Hi Deb,

Great story the narration reminds me of a nice guitar riff. Short and sharp sentences that weave together a rather unexpected plot. Llew's own situation with having woken up with her victim's body and cleaning herself, the allusions to 'the wars' and the description of Cheer and its idylic landscape all fit well together despite the juxtaposition of the dark-light, death-life imagrey. A melody in a book with some heavy metal undertones. Well done. Kind regards, Steve (ex-pat NZer)

SteveSeven wrote 634 days ago

Hi Deb,

Great story the narration reminds me of a nice guitar riff. Short and sharp sentences that weave together a rather unexpected plot. Llew's own situation with having woken up with her victims body and cleaning herself, the allusions to 'the wars' and the description of Cheer and its idylic landsscape all fit well together despite the juxtaposition of the dark-light, death-life imagrey. A melody in a book with some heavy metal undertones. Well done. Kind regards, Steve (ex-pat NZer)

Soulhaven wrote 643 days ago

Just updated Authonomy chapters to the latest versions (18 July 2012)

lhleece wrote 659 days ago

You have to love those cliff-hanger endings! This one certainly leaves you on the edge of your seat (or couch, as the case may be). I found your story through the forums: I would stop reading.... now (or whatver it's called). Only, after I read the beginning, I knew I didn't want to stop reading. I wanted to know what happened. A couple of hours and 15 chapters later... well, is there any more?

This is a very well constructed and thought out tale. You have a fantastic combination of mystery, romance, adventure, passion, magic... that just leaves me wanting to read on. The language you have used and the level of detail and description instantly places me, as a reader, in the world surrounding your characters.

Llew is a battler, instantly loveable, her struggle to come to grips with who she is, what she can do and what it holds for her future keeps us captivated from beginning to end. Her interactions with all characters are believable and realistic for the setting and environment you have constructed.

I would love to know more about the history beween Jonas and Braph (I quite like the names by the way) and again, more about the history between the healers and those who set out to kill them. You've written that the true cause of the rift is lost in the history but Braph appears to have some interesting facts up his sleeve!

I hope you don't mind, I picked out a couple of things that caught my attention as I was reading:

Chapter 3
Through (sheer) force of will

Chapter 6
And her new (friend) would kill her if he ever found out

Chapter 8
The meadow was (eerily) silent

“What in the hell happened last night?” – I would probably omit ‘in’

Llew admits she may have died ‘again’ and you have both Aris and Jonas sounding shocked though she says something similar to Jonas in the meadow/the night before…

Chapter 13
Alvaro had swapped his wide-brimmed hat for a top hat to (match) his grey suit…

Chapter 15
“Nothing? Doesn’t look like nothing to me. Hello, Llew?” He eyed her, wrapped up in a sheet, when (he?) reached them.

This is a well constructed and captivating story and I wish you all the best with it. If you happen to post more, please let me know, otherwise, I shall have to look out for it on bookshelves :-)

Laura
'Guardian'

Tod Schneider wrote 661 days ago

Wow, this is great stuff! You don't drop a beat. Your protagonist is engaging and the storyline just leaps right along. this one will move quickly up the charts!
Tod
http://authonomy.com/books/40646/the-lost-wink/

patio wrote 666 days ago

fabulous story

Sonya Lano wrote 681 days ago

I love this! I love the concept, the writing, the action, the characters, the romance, the tension, the - just everything :-) You'll get my more detailed comments on Jottify when I get the chance to read chapters 13 to 15, but I just wanted to share here how great this novel is on every level, every detail, every facet...
Okay, gush session over, but it's all true ;-)

patio wrote 690 days ago

I bookmarked Weapons of War to read. I was encouraged by your intriguing short pitch

judoman wrote 697 days ago

Deb,
as the last lady comment this is a very unique concept and very different to most "stories" on authonomy. Llew's powers have a cost and her gain seems to cost someone else a penalty.

I look forward to ready on

Dean

LADIES NIGHT
ROUGH JUSTICE

Kate LaRue wrote 698 days ago

Deb,
This is such an interesting concept, what a devastating power to have. The narrative moves along at a quick pace, and Llew is a relatable MC. Jonas is an interesting character, and Al and Cassidy round out the group nicely. I did feel that towards the end of your upload, where Aris is explaining what Llew is etc, that his dialogue seemed a little rougher than in previous portions, less polished I suppose. It matched the way Jonas spoke more than what I was used to from Aris, or what I expected at least.

Watch for repetition of words (you use detritus a lot). Also there were some words that pulled me out of the world you've created. Arse was one of them, but that may just be because I'm American and I always kind of trip over that one. I believe that Llew uses the f word once, too, which took me right out of the scene. I guess I'd just caution to make sure that your word choices are authentic to the world you've built. There were some other words that felt a little too modern to me, but I can't remember what they were.

There is an interesting mix of technology, with telegraphs to spread news and showers at one hotel. It gives this world similarities to our own, with the addition of magic and healers etc.

I really enjoyed what I read. Feel free to message me if you post more chapters.
Kate

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