“When Magic Goes Off The Grid”

by Gail Z. Martin

If you’ve ever lived through an extended power outage, you know how inconvenient, scary and dangerous it can be when the power grid goes down.  Without electric power, food spoils, buildings get too cold or too hot, businesses can’t function and in a total outage, even emergency services grind to a halt.

We’ve seen how devastating it can be to go without electricity when natural disasters or war destroy a region’s infrastructure.  Modern civilization rapidly disintegrates without the conveniences, safety measures, and tools upon which we’ve come to rely.  When society relies on something as fundamentally as we rely on electricity, everything falls apart when that element fails.  People die.

In my new book, Ice Forged (available now for pre-order, in stores January 2013), I imagine a failure of a different kind of “power grid.”  What happens when a society that has become dependent on magic when the magic disappears?

Imagine a world where most people have a touch of magic.  Not powerful, mage-level magic, but kitchen witch-level abilities.  The kind of thing useful for healing, preserving food, improving crop yields, mending broken objects, reinforcing buildings and dams, and enhancing quality.  People who lack magical talent themselves can easily hire someone to do what is needed.  Those small magics have been part of the fabric of life for generations, long enough that most people no longer remember how to do things the hard way.  When a disastrous war destroys the harnessed magic, the consequences are more than political: they’re a matter of life and death.

What if, in the midst of that kind of destruction, you alone had what was needed to bring back the magic?  Who might aid you—and who would benefit from the chaos?  And if, like my hero Blaine McFadden, you had been exiled, stripped of your lands and title, imprisoned and disavowed, would you be willing to risk your life to restore the magic to the kingdom that cast you out?

Ice Forged introduces readers to disgraced former lord Blaine McFadden, who becomes the kingdom’s most sought-after—and hunted—man, the convict on whom the future depends.  If he can live long enough to make his choice.

Grab an excerpt from Ice Forged here: http://www.4shared.com/office/NhlMRowu/Ice_Forged_Excerpt_2.html

 

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