I woke up to a wonderful surprise this morning: the first character study of the hero of my forthcoming novel, Rise of the Stripling Warriors, by the best cover artist I have ever worked with, Egle (Cathy) Zioma.
Ixtil, son of Lamoni, lives for the Mayan ballgame pok-a-tok. He and his friends, the Cloud Jaguar team, drill and train, run and hunt, all in service of the game. The wars of their old enemies, the Lamanites, and their protectors, the Nephites, seem far away.
New converts to the worship of the God of Israel, their fathers and leaders, once the elite of the Lamanite war machine, have made a covenant with God to bury their weapons of war, never again to shed human blood.
Now genocidal war has found them in their mountain refuge. Homicidal King Ammoron has vowed to destroy the People of the Covenant and drink the blood of his enemies, the old royal family. Ixtil’s family.
The People of the Covenant face a stark choice: break their oath and take up arms to help the Nephites defend them, or be extinguished from the face of the earth.
Egle (Cathy) Zioma, the character artist of the enchanting cover of my novel A Midsummer Night’s Steampunk, is brilliant, both technically and artistically. Her images done on my behalf are only the tip of the iceberg of a wonderful body of work.
Egle is a native of Lithuania. She studied Graphic Design/Fine Arts at VDA KDI (Vilniaus Dailes Akademija, Kauno Dailes Fakultetas)
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