January 2023 marks the first official month of the Indie Book Club, but we don't yet have anything to read! Check out the first book on this month's shortlist - Aerth's Aertheric Aegis by Velora Venn. There'll be three more options to come, so be sure to vote for your favourite at the end of the month, and we'll read the winner in February.
About Aerth's Aetheric Aegis
Genre: Fantasy, Steampunk, Romance
Available on: Amazon, Kindle Unlimited
Length: 504 pages
A young woman named Elvira Evenfall has grown up in the ruggedly remote, yet enchanting Falsvik Islands with her grandfather. Her life in a simple fishing village is quaint and serene, but that all changes when a looming threat to the world suddenly invades her tiny corner of it.
A swarm of suspicious bats with enigmatic origins known as the Curse, which can infect people through their bites, transforming them into horrible, bat-like monsters, endangers all human life and now is made very real to Elvira and her loved ones.
Dark and controversial secrets about her family and identity also begin to surface, and before long, she’s faced with a major decision: to accept the mystical and versatile energies known as aether and assume her role as an Aethaumaturge in order to join the precarious fight for the security of Aerth, or hold onto the comforting life she so loves?
This choice is made all the easier when it is revealed that her own parents, who were thought dead, are actually still alive. Elvira’s priorities quickly change to wishing to find and return them home safely.
Her decision instantly results in a corresponding new danger, though, forcing her to flee from her peaceful village. A secret society of Aethaumaturges promises to keep her safe in Brume, the impressive and imposing capital of the country of Lluminox.
A host of obstacles and an assortment of characters are met along the way. While she struggles to gain control of her new powers, she also must decipher her similarly new, unanticipated romantic feelings for two separate individuals — one male, and one female.
It becomes increasingly clear, through her interactions, that the world isn’t just plagued by a pandemic, but also an elite ruling class of superior people who often exploit the underprivileged and abuse their power. These people, known as Ascendants, are a vestige of the Archaic Era, a technologically-advanced time period from hundreds of years prior that was considered the pinnacle of mankind, but concluded with civilization collapsing and the destruction of nearly all humankind, due to the ancient peoples’ malice and selfishness.
About the Author
Velora Venn, a 30-something-year old, grew up in the Midwest, although she's lived all over, from the desert, to the tropics, and now in the mountains of Colorado.
She knew she wanted to be an author since the first grade, when she started stapling together computer paper to make her own excuses for books that consisted of nothing other than crude drawings that she had done in crayon or colored pencil. (Even at this young age, funnily enough, she asked her mother to publish her books.) As she aged, she filled up countless notebooks with stories. Secretly, she desired to be the youngest published author of all time, which, like many silly childhood dreams, did not come close to happening. Although she may not have attained this, The White Mantle was written in five months, which, in itself, was a massive achievement for her and something she formerly wouldn’t have considered possible.
In addition to writing, Velora loves to draw and is passionate about animals, both of which (like her affection for writing) were obvious interests since childhood.
A lifelong nerd, she's a gamer (World of Warcraft, Final Fantasy, Star Ocean, Journey, Horizon Zero Dawn having been some of her favorites) and is a fan of Buffy, Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, The Matrix, His Dark Materials, Avatar (both), X-Men, and anything fantastical.
Velora has a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts in Video Game Art and Design.