THE MOURNER'S KADDISH
In 1907, fourteen year-old Rivka boards the RMS Hollow Queen with her aunt Estir to set sail for Ellis Island. Orphaned and traumatized by a pogrom that destroyed her village and killed her family, Riva has fallen into deep melancholia. Estir tries everything she can as a trained physician to help her niece recover so they can start a new life fresh in America. But Rivka soon starts to babble in her sleep — in English, a language she couldn't possibly know.
Meanwhile, small accidents around the ship quickly escalate into fear among the passengers. The ship's security officer, Lt. Mark Harris, deploys his men to contain the third class passengers and keep them subdued. But the accidents grow more violent, and soon passengers complain of glasses shattering for no reason, seeing a woman in their mirrors who isn't in the cabins, and even talking dolls that terrorize children. The situation soon spirals beyond even Lt. Harris's ability to control the passengers. A first-class American passenger inserts herself into the situation, but is she more help or hinderance? And why does this woman seem so invested in the thing terrorizing the ship?
Lt. Harris conscripts Estir into using her medical training to tend the wounds of fellow passengers. Against her better judgement, Estir must leave Rivka alone. When she returns to their cabin, Rivka is gone. No one has seen her leave. How can this American woman possibly know how to find Rivka? And how can Estir and the other passengers fight something they can't see?
THE MOURNER'S KADDISH is a historical ghost story, told from multiple points of view.
Status: In revisions
Atya, a Moonbound of natural magic, has spent five hundred years looking for the Lady in White, the only one who can lift her curse of Wanderlust and allow Atya to return to her family in Eastern Europe. While she wanders the world and tries everything short of forbidden dark magic to remove the curse herself, Atya's only consolation is her unlikely friendship with the Nightbound Ochira, a runaway Japanese princess who cannot abide her family's rigid code of honor.
In the early 20th century, Atya follows Ochira to Dark Wind Palace when the princess is called home. Within the ancient walls of the Dark Wind, Atya settles into a life among Ochira's family, rulers of the Nightbound of Japan. As the mortals of Meiji-era Japan open their shores to the West, the immortal Nightbound and Moonbound remain in the shadows, content to live unseen by humans. Few welcome Atya's arrival on Japanese shores; most suspect this foreign stranger and do not trust her influence among the royal family. When a rival threatens to take over their throne, Ochira and her family prepare for battle. Atya can help them – but at the cost of never returning to her real home and family. While her actions will make her a target in a foreign land, her sacrifices may give her the power to finally remove the curse herself. Atya and Ochira's friendship has lasted for five hundred years; can it survive all-out war?
Status: Complete, not querying