City of Refuge--Our Kickstarter is Getting Close!


In just a few days, I’ll launch the Kickstarter campaign to publish City of Refuge, the sequel to The Fifth Sacred Thing. I’m swinging madly between wild excitement and good old-fashioned panic. Will this really work?

So many people tell me how much they love The Fifth Sacred Thing–that it has meant something to them, even informed their choices in life.  That itself is an enormous reward for a writer.  But I’m also hoping–counting–on you all to help me spread the word about the sequel.  If this campaign is successful, in the long run it will make it possible for me to write more fiction, which of all the things I do is my deepest calling.

So I thought this morning I’d say a bit more about the story itself. For me, a novel begins with a question. With The Fifth Sacred Thing, it was, “How do you resist violence without turning to violence?” When the ruthless Stewards of the Southlands invade the peaceful, ecotopian Califians of the north, that dilemma comes alive in every character.

The prequel, Walking to Mercury, that tells the story of Maya, Johanna and Rio’s complex relationships, centered around a more personal question, one that I think every young person struggles with: “How do you reconcile your pure ideals with the messy realities of life?”

I sat down to begin City of Refuge in the winter of 2012, when,just a few weeks before, the Occupy movement had  been driven out of the streets.  The question uppermost in my mind was: “How do we build a new world when people are so wounded by the old?”

Each of the characters struggles with that question in their own way. Readers of Fifth will recognize many of them, but there are also new ones.

Madrone is a powerful Healer, but she’s also a woman who struggles with that age-old women’s challenge—how do I not lose myself in the needs of others?

Bird, the gifted musician turned guerilla, is wounded by years of prison and torture, but even more deeply by his own guilt and shame.

River, the former soldier of the Stewardship Ohnine who defected to the North and turned the tide of battle, wants to become what he thinks of as ‘a real person’, not just a tool of others’ ends.

Smokee, the rescued pen-girl sex-slave, is consumed by rage and wants only one thing—her stolen child returned to her.

Cress from Water Council wants to fight, to end the Stewards’ menace once and for all. But he also wants to bring water back to the parched, desiccated lands of the Central Valley, to heal its wounds.

And Maya, aged story-teller, nears the end of life…

…While a warship appears in the waters of the Bay, and down in the Southlands, the Stewards prepare for a new assault…

If you’re excited to read the book, I hope you’ll support our campaign. The rewards will offer you the opportunity to pre-order the book in various forms: an Ebook version, a Kickstarter-only paperback edition, and even a special-edition hardcover version!

This campaign will offer you the opportunity to read City of Refuge weeks before anyone else, and you will be supporting my first self-publishing adventure! There will be a limited number of early bird special rewards available for the first 200 backers, so don’t sleep on it!

If you do want to support the project, it’s a great help if you do so early on, to give us a boost and build momentum.

It will also be a huge help if you forward announcements through your Social Media, post about it on Facebook, Like our Facebook Page, and help us spread the word!

I feel blessed and fortunate to have received so much support from my readers over the years. It’s what stills the panic and gives me the courage to create!  And thanks to all of you for helping to support this new project!


9 comments to City of Refuge–Our Kickstarter is Getting Close!

  • I’m on the edge of my seat – down to my tippy toes excited for the campaign launch. You have many, many devoted friends in this. We are SO excited!!!

  • Robyn James

    Kai Ora from NZ, yes I want a copy asap. Can’t wait.
    Blessings for the project, great idea.

  • Susie Russell

    Lots of folk here in Australia keen to read the next instalment. Will be watching out for the Kickstarter.

  • Ann C.

    Count me in! I love both books and reread them periodically. I can’t wait to see how the story continues.

  • Christopher Lock

    So looking forward to this, the sooner the better 🙂 I cant wait to read the next part of the journey. Will the early bird be available to us in Australia 🙂

    • Stella

      Hi Christopher. Watch this site for a link to the Kickstarter campaign, one of the options will be a copy of the book. Glad you are looking forward to it!

    • Hi Christopher,
      The Ebook edition will be available for sure, and the paperback and hardback, BUT we’ve run into the ridiculous, exhorbitant cost of shipping! The cheapest we could find to Australia costs as much again as a book! I’m not sure what we can do about this–you’d think in the age of globalization when we’re eating New Zealand apples in California that are cheaper than our own, it wouldn’t cost an arm and a leg to ship a book! We may look for an Australian publisher or printer for the actual edition. But one advantage of self-publishing is I don’t have to worry about who has Australian rights!

  • Jeanne Ruetz

    Can’t wait! I have read everything Starhawk has written and I’m excited about the next installment! Bright Blessings!

  • melanie

    looking forward to next book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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