Welcome to the official site of Karin Rita Gastreich.
Karin’s novels blend elements of dark fantasy, historical fiction, and romance. Her stories cover a range of genres from high fantasy to paranormal thrillers.
If you like brave heroines, troubled heroes, and twisted villains, then you’ve come to the right place. From ancient woodlands to uncharted seas, get ready to discover a world of gripping battles, heart wrenching loss, hard-won triumphs, and the ultimate magic of love.
Looking for Karin’s on-line journal? Click here! She’d love to hear from you.
EOLYN (Book One of THE SILVER WEB)
The first threads of THE SILVER WEB are cast in a whispered spell, a sacred oath, and a forbidden kiss.
In a land ravaged by civil war, the Mage King Kedehen initiates a ruthless purge of the magas. Eolyn, last daughter of the magas and sole heiress to their forbidden craft, seeks refuge in the South Woods. When she meets the mysterious Akmael, heir to the throne of this violent realm, she embarks on a path of hope, seduction, betrayal, and war. Desire draws Eolyn toward Akmael’s dark embrace, but fate binds her to Corey of East Selen, a cunning mage whose ambition challenges the limits of love and loyalty.
Can she trust either man?
Hunted in a realm of powerful wizards and brutal deceptions, Eolyn must find her own path to freedom or she will burn on the pyre.
“Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes, with a romantic thread.” – Publishers Weekly
A “dreamlike, fairy-tale ambiance…immersive political machinations and grand-scale battles.” –Kirkus Reviews
“Headstrong, hopeful, and fiercely loyal to her roots, Eolyn is a character you can’t help but stand behind.” –Apex Reviews
“Magnificently written.” –Kindle Book Review
SWORD OF SHADOWS (Book Two of THE SILVER WEB)
Lands ravaged. Dreams destroyed. Demons set loose upon the earth.
Sisters in magic, Eolyn and Adiana seek to revive a millennial tradition once forbidden to women. When war strikes, their fledgling community of magas is destroyed; its members killed, captured, or scattered.
Determined to defend her people against the darkest forces of the Underworld, Eolyn seeks to escape the occupied province and deliver to King Akmael a weapon that might secure their victory. Trapped by the invading army, Adiana is taken prisoner and placed at the mercy of the ruthless Prince Mechnes.
Even as their paths are separated and their world torn asunder, Eolyn and Adiana cling to a common dream. Courage and perseverance guide them through chaos toward a future where women’s magic will flourish in a world set free from violence and war.
But that dream will not be possible unless both are willing to offer the greatest possible sacrifice…
“War propels the story forward, and the characters are at their best when circumstances are at their worst.” –Publishers Weekly
“Lush, evocative descriptions carry readers through an unforgettable journey.” –Kirkus Reviews
Sword of Shadows was first published in 2014 by Hadley Rille Books,under the title High Maga.
Praise for Karin Rita Gastreich and The Silver Web
“A tale of female oppression, prejudice, and even deadly seduction, Eolyn touches on issues that are deeply relevant in our own society. At times both heartwarming and heart-wrenching, the story warns young women about the ways in which the world will try to take advantage of them—but it does so in a way that never denies them their magic.” – Apex Reviews
“Gastreich allows her heroes to have flaws—including moments of cowardice—and some victories bring new sorrows. Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes will satisfy fans of traditional epic fantasy with a romantic thread.” –Publisher’s Weekly review of Eolyn
“Gastreich’s unhurried but engaging tale is heavily populated with characters and social themes, including feminism and bigotry….But the story’s greatest triumph is Gastreich’s prose, a consistent blend of lyrical verse and dark imagery…” –Kirkus Reviews
“War propels the book forward, and the characters are at their best when the events engulfing them are at their worst. . . . Fans of Gastreich’s previous work will want to catch this continuation of her story.” –Publishers Weekly review of Sword of Shadow (formerly High Maga)
“I especially love that this trilogy has such intriguing women playing significant roles on both sides of the story…” –The White Sky Project
“Ms. Gastreich’s uncanny talent for truly creating a world her readers can become part of is a rare gift, and one she shares abundantly.” –Terri-Lynne DeFino, author of Finder
“The beautiful descriptions and captivating characters will draw readers in and keep them turning page after page. Fantasy at its best!” –DelSheree Gladden, author of Wicked Hunger
“Although rooted in traditional fantasy, Eolyn stretches and breaks the bounds in many ways, leading to a read that is fresh and unpredictable.” –Shauna Roberts, author of Like Mayflies in a Stream
“Gastreich’s Eolyn focuses on the emotional, political, and physical conflicts between powerful and three-dimensional characters.” –Carlyle Clark, author of The Black Song Inside
“Humour leavens the story…but never becomes intrusive or undermines the strong threads of loss, duty, romance and revenge that permeate the book. And the action is often superb.” –David Hunter, author of A Road of Blood and Slaughter
“A book to savor first at great length, and then revisit over and over again.” –Lucy Crowe, author of Sugarman’s Daughter
“This story is masterfully written.” –The Kindle Book Review of Eolyn