Title: THE LOVELY INVISIBLE
Genre: YA Fantasy
Word Count: 98,000
Isidora, crown princess of Olenea, dreams of marrying for love as her parents did before her. But when her father dies unexpectedly and she ascends the throne at the age of eighteen, a very different reality confronts her. Marriage means alliances and nothing more.
When Isidora refuses to wed, her council votes to rescind her power. To them, she is merely an ignorant girl unprepared to rule. Now her kingdom starves while Aphrodite’s temple overflows with tribute treasure, and massive empires loom, ready to swoop in and seize control of Olenea. Yet all her council seems to care about is whom she’ll choose as their king. Her only hope of restoring her power and saving her country is marrying one of three suitors: a passionate cousin from Corinth, a money-wise fashionista from Athens, or a celebrated warrior from Sparta. But the man Isidora is drawn to isn’t one of the three. An invader of privacy, infuriatingly secretive, and as it turns out, an exceptional kisser, he’s the only one who truly sees her. Which is ironic, since he is invisible.
As her forced wedding date approaches, Isidora must make her choice. Without a strong alliance, Olenea will fall to the mercy of tyrants and warlords. In the face of assassination attempts, a divided people, and the threat of war, she must decide if she has the faith to declare the choice of her heart—and hope that true love has the power to save Olenea.
Complete at 98,000 words, THE LOVELY INVISIBLE, is a lush retelling of the Greek myth, “Cupid & Psyche,” and may appeal to readers who enjoyed the romantic suspense of Leigh Bardugo’s SHADOW AND BONE and the rich setting of Megan Whalen Turner’s THE QUEEN OF ATTOLIA.
I stared at the marble face of the god of love, instead of the polished bronze mirror balanced on his wings.
“Look at yourself.” Nuri tilted up my chin with her thin brown fingers.
I kept my eyes fastened on the god. His mouth was sculpted in such a way I couldn’t determine whether he scowled or smirked at me.
Scrutinizing my choice of attire, Nuri clucked her tongue. “You shame the patron goddess.”
I wriggled my chin from her grasp. “I thought the virginal white would please her.”
“Don’t try and fool me, Isidora. I’ve been in your service since the day you were weaned. You chose the white because it’s plain.” She grabbed a fistful of my robe as if it were enough evidence to banish me.
I sighed and glanced at the foot of the mirror, where three scrolls of newly delivered papyrus lay waiting to be read. I wanted this day to be over. I wanted to curl into a quiet corner of the palace and read about the new cranes in Athens that lifted massive blocks of marble, the paved slipway near Corinth where boats were dragged across the isthmus, the rare collection of elegies by female poets. “Why should I draw attention to myself on Procession Day? The glory should go to the goddess.”
The god holding the mirror definitely scowled at me, as if he were more than chiseled stone and could hear my lie. I cared nothing for the glory of Aphrodite.