Monday, November 4, 2013

The Curse Giver by Dora Machado

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Romantic Fantasy, Fantasy Romance, Dark Fantasy Publisher: Twilight Times Books ISBN: 978-1-60619-289-4 ASIN: B00DSUQL4I Number of pages: 510 Word Count: 165,000 aprox. Cover Artist: Brad Fraunfelter 

Betrayed and condemned to die for a crime she didn't commit, an innocent healer must ally with
the embittered lord pledged to kill her in order to defeat not only the vile curse obliterating their
lives, but also the curse giver who has already conjured their ends.
Long Description:
Lusielle's bleak but orderly life as a remedy mixer is shattered when her husband betrays her and
she is sentenced to die for a crime she didn't commit. She's on the pyre, about to be burned, when
a stranger breaks through the crowd and rescues her from the flames.
Brennus, Lord of Laonia is the last of his line. He is caught in the grip of a mysterious curse that
has murdered his kin, doomed his people and embittered his life. To defeat the curse, he must
hunt a birthmark and kill the woman who bears it in the foulest of ways. Lusielle bears such a
Stalked by intrigue and confounded by the forbidden passion flaring between them, predator and
prey must come together to defeat not only the vile curse, but also the curse giver who has
already conjured their ends.

It’s been a while since I’ve read any real fantasy.Machado creates an entirely new structure of deities for her characters to worship and fall prey to. The Curse Giver is a magnificent story that carries the reader into a world of curses, myths, gods and goddesses, and magic. I am not normally a fan of Fantasy. I like them with watching usually. this is because there are so many point of views, so many characters that you have to keep track of, it just is confusing.The realism and attention to detail is beyond anything I have every read. There is a whole new religion full of god and goddesses that is explained, and again I usually run screaming…but it was not to much or boring. I actually enjoyed a lot of aspects of their religion.

 This book is not short, and despite what you want to do, you cannot read it in one night. I mean you could try, but 500 pages is a lot. Even with the length you just do not want to put this book down!
Overall, this was a brilliantly atypical fantasy novel that I enjoyed throughout. Anyone who enjoys a bit of fantasy should pick it up. 


The Curse Giver Chapter One

Dread stared at Lusielle from the depths of the rowdy crowd. Concealed under a heavy hood, only the
stranger’s black eyes dared to meet her gaze among the growing throng. The man’s eyes refused to flinch
or shift from her face. His stare was free of the hatred she had gotten from the others, but also devoid of
mercy. He held on to her gaze like an anchor to her soul, testing her fortitude, knowing full well her fears’
vast range.
She had always been meant for the fire. Even as she had escaped the blaze that killed her parents and
burned the inn to the ground, Lusielle had known that the flame’s greedy god would return to claim her
life. But she hadn’t expected it to hap¬pen after days of torture, surrounded by the raging mob, found
guilty of a crime she didn’t commit, betrayed and condemned.
The town’s cobbler, one of her husband’s best customers, tight¬ened the noose around her neck until it
cut off her breath. She had waited on him countless times at the shop, and had always padded his order
with a free measure of coriander to help with his wife’s cough.
But none of the town’s inhabitants seemed to remember any of her kindnesses as of late. On the contrary,
the crowd was booing and jeering when they weren’t pelting her with rotten fruit. They treated her as if
she were a common thief.
The brute who had conducted her torture shoved the cobbler aside, tying her elbows and wrists around the
wooden stake. Orell. She remembered his name. His bearded face might have been handsome if not for
the permanent leer. Like the magis¬trate, he wore the king’s burgundy colors, but his role had been more
vicious. Had he been granted more time, he might have succeeded at extracting the false confession he
wanted, but the magistrate was in a hurry, afraid of any possible unrest.
Orell yanked on the ropes, tightening her bonds. The wound on her back broke open all over again. She
swallowed a strangled hiss. It was as if the thug wanted her to suffer, as if he had a pri¬vate reason to
profit from her pain.
But she had never seen him until three days ago, when he and the magistrate had shown up unannounced,
making random accusations.
Lusielle couldn’t understand any of this.
She knew that the king’s justice was notoriously arbitrary. It was one of the main reasons why she loathed
living under King Riva’s rule. But she also knew better than to express her opinion. Ruin and tragedy
trailed those who dared to criticize the king. That’s why she had never mentioned her misgivings to
What had she done to deserve this fate? And why did they con¬tinue to be so cruel? After all, she wasn’t
fighting them anymore.
True, she had resisted at first. Out of fear and pride, she had tried to defend herself. But in the end, it
hadn’t mattered. Her accusers had relied on the testimony of the devious liar who had turned her in—
Aponte Rummins—her own husband.
The mock hearing had been too painful to bear, too absurd to believe. Aponte swore before the magistrate
that Lusielle was a secret practitioner of the forbidden odd arts. It was ridiculous. How could anyone
believe that she, who had always relied on logic, measure and observation to mix her remedies, could
possi¬bly serve the Odd God’s dark purposes? And how could anyone believe Aponte’s lies?
But they did, they believed him as he called on his paid wit¬nesses and presented fabricated evidence,
swearing that he him¬self had caught her at the shop, worshipping the Odd God. In the end, it had been
her husband’s false testimony that provided the ultimate proof of the heinous charge for which Lusielle
was about to die.
Burning torch in hand, the magistrate stepped forward. Still in shock, Lusielle swallowed a gulp of bitter
horror and steeled for the flames’ excruciating pain. She didn’t want to die like a shrieking coward. But
nothing could have prepared her for what happened next.
The magistrate offered the torch to Aponte.
“The king upholds a husband’s authority over his wife in the kingdom,” the magistrate shouted for the
crowd to hear. “There can be no protests, no doubt of the wisdom of royal justice if a husband does as
he’s entitled to do by his marital rights.”
Aponte could have forgone her execution. Considering the magistrate’s proclamation, he could have
chosen a different pun¬ishment for her. Instead, he accepted the torch and, without hesi¬tation, put the
flame to the tinder and blew over the kindling to start the fire.
“Go now,” he said, grinning like a hog about to gorge. “Go find your dark lord.”
Lusielle glared at the poor excuse for a man who had ruined her life many times over. She had known
from the beginning that he was fatally flawed, just as he had known on the day he claimed her that she
couldn’t pledge him any affection.
But Aponte had never wanted her affection. He had wanted her servitude, and in that sense she proved to
be the reluctant but dutiful servant he craved.
Over the years he had taught her hatred.
His gratification came from beating and humiliating her. His crass and vulgar tastes turned his bed into a
nightmare. She felt so ashamed of the things he made her do. Still, even if she loathed him—and not just
him, but the slave she had become under his rule—she had tried to make the best of it.
She had served him diligently, tending to his businesses, reor¬ganizing his stores, rearranging his trading
routes and increas¬ing his profits. His table had always been ready. His meals had been hot and
flavorsome. His sheets had been crisp and his bed had been coal-warmed every night. Perhaps due to all
of this, he had seemed genuinely pleased with their marital arrangement.
Why, then, had he surrendered her so easily to the magistrate’s brute?
Aponte had to have some purpose for this betrayal. He was, above all, a practical man. He would not
surrender all the advan¬tages that Lusielle brought to him—money, standing, common sense, business
acumen—without the benefit of an even greater windfall.
Lusielle couldn’t understand how, but she was sure that the bastard was going to profit handsomely from
her death.
The scent of pine turned acrid and hot. Cones crackled and popped. The fire hissed a sinister murmur, a
sure promise of pain. She didn’t watch the little sparks grow into flames at her feet. Instead, her eyes
returned to the back of the crowd, seeking the stranger’s stare. She found him even as a puff of white
smoke clouded her sight and the fire’s rising heat distorted his scarred face’s fixed expression.
The nearing flames thawed the pervasive cold chilling her bones. Flying sparks pecked at her skin. Her
toes curled. Her feet flinched. Pain teased her ankles in alarming, nipping jolts. Dear gods. They were
really going to burn her alive!
Lusielle shut her eyes. When she looked again, the stranger was gone from the crowd. She couldn’t blame
him. She would have never chosen to watch the flame’s devouring dance.
A commotion ensued somewhere beyond the pyre. People were screaming, but she couldn’t see through
the flames and smoke. She flinched when a lick of fire ignited her shift’s hem. A vile stink filled her
lungs. Her body shivered in shock. She coughed, then hacked. Fear’s fiery fingers began to torment her
“Come and find me,” she called to the God of fire.
And he did.

For a free excerpt of The Curse Giver, visit

Dora Machado is the award winning author of the epic fantasy Stonewiser series and her newest novel, The Curse Giver, available from Twilight Times Books July 2013. She grew up in the Dominican Republic, where she developed a fascination for writing and a taste for Merengue. After a lifetime of straddling such compelling but different worlds, fantasy is a natural fit to her stories. She lives in Florida with her husband and three very opinionated cats.

To learn more about Dora Machado and her novels, visit her website at

Subscribe to her blog at , sign up for her newsletter at and follow her on  Facebook and  Twitter.

For a free excerpt of The Curse Giver, visit

About Dora Machado's Novels:

Dora Machado is the award winning author of the Stonewiser trilogy and her newest novel, The Curse Giver. She is one of the few Latinas exploring her heritage and her world through the epic fantasy genre today. Her first novel, Stonewiser: The Heart of the Stone, won the 2009 Benjamin Franklin award for best debut novel. Her second novel, Stonewiser: The Call of the Stone, won the 2010 Independent Publishers Book Award's (IPPY) Gold Medal for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy book of the year. Her third novel, Stonewiser: The Lament of the Stone, won the 2012 Independent Publishers Book Award's (IPPY) Silver Medal for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy book of the year. All three novels were finalists in ForeWord Magazine's Book of the Year Award in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Category. Her latest novel, The Curse Giver from Twilight Times Books is available July 2013.

Twitter: @DoraMachado or

Amazon Author Central:

1 comment:

  1. Hello! Thank you so much for featuring The Curse Giver in your blog today. Thank you especially for your kind review. I'm delighted to hear that you enjoyed The Curse Giver and particularly pleased that you came over to the fantasy genre for a little while. I hope you'll do it again. :) Thanks again and best wishes for you and your readers.


I love comments. I appreciate every one of them! So Thank you!