Subscribe to receive high fantasy novella Confronting the Demon free in ebook format. Also receive short story A Magical Melody one page a day for ten days.


Six months ago, the disgraced wizard, Alloran, sacrificed his hand to rescue the woman he loves from his traitorous friend, Ladanyon. Despite saving the city from a demon, his reputation remains tarnished, and the council of wizards has penalised him severely for the practise of banned magic.

Now he learns his desperate efforts to stop Ladanyon led more to damnation than salvation. Finding a solution compels him to breach his sanctions and venture into forbidden places at risk of his life and freedom.

Alloran must choose between saving himself and everything he holds dear.


"I really liked the first book, and this sequel is a great follow-up. The descent into the hell realm is exciting, better even than the climax of the first book, when hell makes an appearance in Alloran's world. I love the tentacled first-realm demons, very kraken meets Lovecraftian Old Ones." ~ Samantha Sabovitch

"Awesome conflict on every page. Tons of surprises too. Great ending! This is a fast read, but the setting and characterization is rich and deep and I fell into the story in a way I didn't expect." ~ J.

"Stalking the Demon was quick and intricate, but slow and methodical at the same time. I found myself constantly trying to figure out what would happen next, and was usually wrong. There was a great amount of action and suspense that really grabbed me and kept me reading until the end." ~ Joe Slonaker


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  • About Ciara Ballintyne

    Ciara Ballintyne sings American country music with an Australian accent and is slave to two cats who believe they are gods - but who graciously permit her husband and two daughters to reside with them. She holds degrees in law and accounting, and for her sins has been a practising financial services lawyer since 2004.
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  • Monday Morsels

    I started Monday Morsels and the associated hashtag when I wanted to share snippets of the books I was working on. On Mondays, you can have the opportunity to get a first look at the raw draft of upcoming releases on my blog, Flight of the Dragon. If you're also a writer, find out
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  • Bonus Content

    Want to know more about the characters and their worlds? Visit here for free bonus content available from time to time, including maps, diagrams, floor plans, wallpapers, screensavers, deleted scenes and other additional content. Check out the map of Idras from the Seven Circles of Hell series!
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  • Read A Magical Melody #FREE - Until June 3 +

    Until June 3, my short fantasy story is available free to read in Inkitt's Epic Worlds competition. A Magical Melody is the first installment in A Symphony of Magic, a five part story starting with four shorts and culminating in a full-length novel. To start you off, the first few paragraphs are below, then follow the link at the end to read the conclusion - or jump straight to the link to read the whole story on Inkitt's site. If you enjoy the story, please do vote on the Inkitt site - just login via facebook and click the heart at the bottom of the story page. I am currently 20th and I need to stay at 25 or better to make Read More
  • Monday Morsel: Alharne Was Dead - an excerpt from IN THE COMPANY OF THE DEAD +

    A ballroom. A king’s court. No, a gala. And a woman, an ambassador from Tembra, smiling archly at him over a goblet of red wine. Night black hair and eyes as deep and mysterious as a cave pool. Alabaster skin. No name came to him, but he ached for her, ached for the memory of her. The whirl of remembrance lifted him up and spun him forward like a leaf. Now the woman clasped his hands in hers, staring at him solemnly across the red marriage ribbon twining their entangled fingers. He drank in her gaze, lost himself in her eyes. The swell of sudden emotion left him weak, and his chest choked and constricted almost painfully, robbing him of Read More
  • Book Tour: Blood Isle by Mark Stone @calasade +

    Blood Isle: Calasade Series virtual book tour featured by Happy Geek Media Excerpt of Blood Isle: Calasade “In the Pit” Wearing nothing— —teeth chattering— —trapped in a pit— —staring at the beams of a moon that never seemed to move— —cowering. Weeping. Growls from outside rose in pitch and bordered on screams of a tortured person. The beasts making those spine-chilling noises stood upright on powerful hind legs, their bodies brown, hairless, gargantuan, heads horned. She had seen the caged animals after her captors whisked her off a ship and up a mountainous incline but before they lowered her into this prison, the pit’s mouth a symbol of freedom and blinding fear. She could do nothing save die if a Read More
  • Monday Morsel: The Gown - an excerpt from IN THE COMPANY OF THE DEAD +

    I haven't posted anything since early April, for which I apologise. It's been a rather hectic time, with lots of travel for my day job, and not much sleep on the homefront, and it's been difficult to get to the blog. I can promise though that I have still been writing, and In the Company of the Dead is out with beta readers - I've just started getting feedback and so far so good! For now, enjoy this Monday Morsel. * * * The maid stepped over to touch Ellaeva’s arm as the door clicked shut behind Everard. ‘Your holiness will require my assistance with the buttons of the gown.’ Unable to avoid it anymore, Ellaeva’s eyes darted to the gown hanging in the Read More
  • Monday Morsel: Must Be Another Way - an excerpt from IN THE COMPANY OF THE DEAD +

    ‘Are you sure about this?’ Everard hovered behind the castellan’s wife’s maid, anxiety warring with dignity in his stiff posture. The maid shot him an annoyed look as he bumped the table, jostling the collection of pots of paints and rouges. When Everard retreated, she put the brush in her hand delicately to Ellaeva’s cheekbones. ‘No.’ Ellaeva worked her jaw to moisten her dry mouth. ‘No, not at all.’ ‘Could your holiness close your eyes?’ The maid’s soft voice was deferential as she laid down the brush. Examining the portrait propped on the table, she selected another, smaller brush. Ellaeva closed her eyes, and a moment later the rabbit’s fur brush flickered over her eyelids. ‘There must be another way.’ Read More
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For a Limited Time Only

Until June 3, you can read fantasy short story A Magical Melody free in Inkitt's Epic Worlds Competition. If you enjoy it, please vote using the heart at the bottom of the page beneath the story.

About the Story

When a lethal spell is stolen from a locked and warded room, Avram must hunt down the thief before the song of power buries a city of innocents beneath a thousand tonnes of ice.

Review of A Magical Melody by Joseph Grasso

This is remarkable concept and one that I am in full sympathy with: magical spells being compositions of music performed by orchestra and soloists, which must be performed with skill and ability or else...bad things happen. Many fantasy novels... have played with this concept, since nothing is more pure and powerful than the world of music. The author makes this concept, which could be merely clever, really work, particularly through her characters--including one "jug eared" conductor. The writing is gorgeous, and the entire piece is like a concerto for narrator and orchestra. The narration plays beautifully off the characters and the story, and I was truly under its spell... Encore--we need an Andante, a Scherzo, and a Finale! Musical metaphors aside, this really is first-rate work...