“If you love well-written stories with three-dimensional characters and sophisticated plots, then Magus Star Rising: A Tale of the Galactic Nexia by Larry Ivkovich, a sci-fi novel will be a delightful treat. It’s a story that revolves around the mysterious Magus Star that will appear after many decades, an appearance to which the Senittes give great importance.
When tech buff Simon Weller is offered a job to follow the husband of Claudia Honin-Zay, suspected of meeting another woman in the city of Yharrio, he thinks this could be an easy job. But Weller quickly finds himself embroiled in a very strange world. Now, he has to tread a very delicate path in a world where ancient rituals mixed with magic are practiced and where nothing is what it seems. In this world he has to face a very dangerous memory from his past.
But there is a more terrifying threat, a mysterious killer who could be empowered by the Magus Star. And can Weller, with his allies, stop this dangerous killer?
Larry Ivkovich is a great storyteller with a profound imagination that brings to life a world that is as fascinating as it is frightening, and characters that readers will enjoy, including Weller, an interstellar hospice, feline-humanoids, and a host of others. The writing is focused and there is a clear balance in the handling of the different elements of the story — a cunning plot, fleshed-out characters, and masterly thematic development.
I enjoyed the fact that the author weaves elements of magic and mystery into the writing, creating a dark world that casts a spell on readers who enjoy the “noir” angle. Great writing for a spellbinding novel, utterly delectable!”
~ Ruffina Oserio
Edition #91 April 29 – 2018
MAGUS STAR RISING
By Larry Ivkovich
Behoola gasped. Through a cloud of dust, materializing like a creature out of a nightmare, a brutish apen appeared, a short link of broken chain dangling from its thick neck. The wild mountain hominid flailed its muscular arms as it shrieked a ghostly cry. It stood as high as an average Senitte but possessed a broad chest, short, bowed legs and powerful strength. Thick, wiry red fur covered the beast’s body. Its bulbous head, crowned by an upright crest of sharp, spiky hair, held two, close-set eyes and a fanged mouth, giving it the appearance of a hideous mask.
Behind the beast, an overturned wagon held the broken remains of a large animal cage. A Senitte, possibly the wagon’s driver, lay on the ground writhing in pain as three others, all dressed in the loose, flamboyant garb of Outlanders, tried to drag him out of harm’s way. The tavra hitched to the wagon cried out again in terror as the rugged pack animal attempted to right itself from its fallen position.
Though her blood froze at the sight of the apen, Behoola backed up as some semblance of survival instinct took over. The apen started in her general direction, moving quickly for one so ungainly looking. It swatted at a bystander who was too slow and too close, knocking the man aside as if he were made of feathers. The apen stopped and threw its head back, giving voice once again to that ear-rending cry as it pounded its chest with its fists.
What is an apen doing here? Behoola wondered, her thoughts speeding through her mind as her body moved on a self-control of its own. Were the fools going to sell it as some kind of exotic delicacy?
The apen charged. It lumbered toward her now, supporting part of its weight on its long arms as it pulled its body forward with uncanny agility.
Chaos ensued as the knot of people behind Behoola broke and fled like a crazed herd of ungulates.
Behoola followed suit. There were so many people, the beast would surely become confused. But, as she risked a quick glance over her shoulder, she saw the apen moving up on her. Its lips skinned back, flashing a deadly grin at its chosen prey. Behoola could smell its feral musk. Its clawed hand reached out for her.
She whirled, panic overtaking her first. She swung her arm around in front of her as if that desperate act could stop the creature. Screams erupted all around her. A popping sound split the air. Behoola tripped and fell on her back, her own scream caught in her throat as the wind rushed out of her. Great Spirits, she thought, trying to roll herself into a protective ball. No…
Larry Ivkovich’s speculative fiction has been published in over twenty online and print publications, including Shoreline of Infinity, Across the Karman Line, and TV Gods II.
He has been a finalist in the L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future contest and was the 2010 recipient of the CZP/Rannu Fund award for fiction.
The third book in Larry’s Spirit Winds Quartet urban fantasy series, Orcus Unchained, was just released this year, following the novels, The Sixth Precept, and Warriors of the Light from IFWG Publishing.
Self-published SF novel, Magus Star Rising, was released in 2018.
Larry is a member of the SF organization PARSEC, writing/critique group WorD, Pittsburgh Mindful Writers Groups East and North, statewide writers’ organization Pennwriters, and the Taoist Tai Chi Society of the U.S.A.
He lives in Coraopolis, PA with his beautiful, talented wife Martha and wonder cats Trixie and Milo.