Saturday, May 25, 2013

Born in Sin

Today, author and friend Camelia Miron Skiba stops by to leave a guest post for us, and to announce the release of her newest book, Born in Sin, which is book 2 in the Dacian Legends series. I had the chance to read this book, so beneath Camelia's guest post is my review of the book.

by Camelia Miron Skiba


Loathing the thought of his beloved Oriana in the arms of another man, fearless Zyraxes delivers death upon the Roman enemy. With only the rugged land as his bed and the sky as his blanket, trouble finds him often.

Summoned to aid Oriana’s father in the war against two powerful enemies—one of them Oriana's savage husband—Zyraxes proves himself worthy of more than just noble titles and coin. But he wants none of it. What he wants is her.

When Zyraxes discovers a broken and nearly dead Oriana, though forbidden, he disregards her father's orders to leave her to her death, and instead chooses to protect and conceal her. Will saving her be enough to win her heart? Will his part royal lineage make him worthy of her love?
Guest Post—Regrets
by Camelia Miron Skiba
There are two regrets I’ve accumulated in my whole life and while I try not to dwell on them sometimes they resurface to remind me what I could’ve done differently.
One of those regrets is not taking enough photos of Patrick when he was little. Too busy licking my own wounds after I divorced his biological father, too overwhelmed as a single parent and too scared about the future, buying a camera was not top priority on my to-do list. He was only 9 months at that time. I wish there is a way I could go back and immortalize on paper those memories I have kept in my heart—chubby cheeks, curious big blue eyes, blond shiny hair, adorable smile, loving hands. I pray I’ll never lose my mind because the memories of him as a baby are the most treasured from a time in my life I call “Looking for me.”
My second regret is smoking. I started when I was only 16, rebelling against my father who always threatened he’d make me eat the cigarette if he ever found me smoking. That coming from a man who woke up middle of the night to smoke and had packs of cigarettes in every pocket. I used to leave the house earlier in the morning and meet my friends in the park to smoke before classes started. The same cigarette made it from mouth to mouth until there was nothing left. Talk about exchanging different bodily fluids and God knows what diseases.
These memories I wish I can erase not only from my mind but from my life entirely. Because I poisoned my body for quite a few years until one day I woke up, smoked one last cigarette and told myself, “I’m done.” Never again picked up another cigarette. And while many, many years have passed since, I sometimes wonder when will I pay the price for being so reckless. Because there is no such thing as free of charge.
My Review of Born in Sin
The first book in the series, originally titled I Was Here - Before You Came, and recently retitled Born in Vengeance to be more in accordance with the series, is a short story. It was published in the It's a Love Thing anthology by Prose by Design (which I happen to co-own) so I'm very familiar with the story as well as the journey for Camelia in writing this series.
Camelia hails from Romania, though she's lived in the USA for the past nine or ten years. So the subject of these books is very near and dear to her heart - the rise of Romania as a country. The first book follows Ilias, and his love for the daughter of his sworn enemy, Nerva. The sequel, Born in Sin, follows Ilias' brother Zyraxes and his longing for childhood love Oriana.
Their's is a sweet love story, one of being forced apart by social expectation and circumstance, and then thrown back together in the midst of a hopeless battle. He finds Oriana, beaten, broken, nearly dead, and hides her, nursing her back to health in spite of the risk to his own life by doing so. My favorite part of their love story is that it's so believable. There's no instant look of burning desire. There's a history of innocent love between them, and familiarity. Zyraxes longs for her, wanting nothing more than to be with her. It's impossible, though - or so he thinks. She's married and royalty, and he's simply the bastard son of a king, and a warrior. 
My favorite part of the story overall is the language in which it's written. Camelia wrote it first person, present tense, and her prose is appropriate for the time period, making it feel as if you're reading Zyraxes' private journals. This hardened, tough warrior has a romantic, poetic heart which you see through his thoughts. Obviously he's not going to spout poetry to his warrior buddies. There's an excerpt below so you can see what I mean about her prose.
I highly recommend this book to those who enjoy historical books, or historical romance. Camelia captures the feel of the time perfectly, plunging you into their violent, desperate world. You can feel her passion for the subject of the rise of Romania. You can pick up a copy beginning on 5/30/13 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online retailers. Check Camelia's website for links when they become available.
Excerpt from Born in Sin
Horror pains Oriana’s face when she sees me. I wouldn’t recognize her had I seen her in a crowd. Dark bruises mar her jaw and right temple. Her hair, once beautifully braided, is now a dry mud and straw-tangled mass, framing a deadly pale face. She strains to get up, but she’s too weak. “We are lost,” she cries, “why did you bring him?”
I rush to Oriana’s side, pain splitting my heart in pieces. “My queen, you don’t recognize me?”
“Oh, Zyraxes, why did you come? You shan’t see me this way …” Oriana hides her face behind Thera’s shoulder, tugging at the torn rag covering her fragile body. She struggles to sit up, but she falls back on the ground with a cry.
“Oriana …” I place a hand on her arm, then withdraw it. She’s hot to the touch, feverishly hot. Seeing the queen of my heart so hurt and broken is harder than her rejection. I must save her, I must. The knot in my throat chokes me. I haven’t cried since my mother died.
“Oriana … remember when you broke your wrist?” I have to whisper or she’ll know how weak I am, tears of helplessness brimming my eyes.
With a little spark in her glassy blue eyes, she holds her right wrist at her chest. More bruises cover both her arms, her left hand wrapped in a dirty cloth.
I pray she remembers. Her nod gives me hope.
“Remember the splinter and the bandages I wrapped your arm in and told you not to remove for three weeks?” She nods again. I take her wrist and kiss it, then stroke it. At first she tries to pull away, but now her arm rests in my hand. “And remember how I threatened to tell your father about you climbing the tree when you took it off only a week later?”
Oriana smiles between tears. Her voice is above a whisper, “I do not want you to see me this way …”
“I am not. I only see you need my aid. Please, Oriana, let me serve you. Please?”
About the Author
 ~Who I am is not important but what I leave behind is~~ © 2013 Camelia Miron Skiba
I’m a dreamer
I’m a sinner
I love my books
I conjure hooks
And heroes with good looks

Romance is my guilty pleasure
Taking me to places with new decor
Come join me if you dare
I promise not to bore
If you like to read my stories
Pray my husband continues snorin’
For he’s the one who keeps me up at night
When I give my heroes wings and flight.
TWITTER: @CamiSkiba
AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE: CameliaMiron Skiba





  1. Thanks for hosting me, chickie. Your review sure warms up my heart. Thank you and the rest of the peeps for watching over me while my stories shape into what they are today. xoxo

    1. You are very welcome. I meant every word of the review, it's a great story. xoxo right back atcha! :o)