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About Celia Lake
Celia Lake spends her days as a librarian in the Boston (MA) metro area, and her nights and weekends at home happily writing, reading, and researching.
Explore https://celialake.com for additional information about the books, including content notes, historical background, timelines and maps.
Born and raised in Massachusetts to British parents, she naturally embraced British spelling, classic mysteries, and the Oxford comma before she learned there were any other options.
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Books By Celia Lake
All proceeds from the collection will be donated to OutRight Action International, which fights for the rights of LGBTIQ people worldwide.
In this enchanting collection, a flying cat transports love letters, a fox-dog and a pair of watercats help two lonely women launch a post-apocalyptic cat cafe, a baby griffin brings unexpected love to a runaway troll woman, and much, much more!
Includes all-new stories from Yoon Ha Lee, Pamela Dean, Zoe Chant, and more of your favorite authors.
“Deep Spring Farm,” by Romana Clifton. Can Melanie and a friendly ghost dog help a beautiful farmer protect her lettuce from spirits that stomp in the night?
“Lucky Day,” by Yoon Ha Lee. Which is harder, hiding a crush on the gorgeous woman in your role-playing game group, or hiding the unicorn figurine that just came to life?
“Beach Dirt on Bare Feet,” by Louise Long. It’s hard to trust humans when you’re a selkie, especially when a beachside ice cream date could lead to so much more.
“Cute as Hell,” by Caia Winter. You’d think two vampires would be a match for an adorable hellhound puppy, and yet...
“Watercat Cafe,” by Rachel Manija Brown. Ruthie intends to open the first cat cafe in her post-apocalyptic world, but the mysterious, wounded stranger she rescues could doom her dream--or save it.
“How to Get a Girlfriend (When You’re a Terrifying Monster),” by Marie Cardno. Trillin has no corporeal form, no mortal cultists ready to tear reality asunder in her name, and no girlfriend. It's tough being an eldritch entity.
“Pawprints in the Snow,” by Zoe Chant. A lost cat leaves a path to love for a lonely snow leopard shifter.
“As if the Sun Came to Shine,” by Damkianna. An injured baby griffin catalyzes the relationship between a lovely changeling and a troll woman in hiding.
“Uncontrolled Variable,” by Sara Joiner. It's hard to investigate magical seagrass when your mischievous teleporting cat keeps becoming part of the data.
“That Magic Touch,” by Hailey Thorne. Vanessa's ex-BFF wants to tear a hole in reality, and it's going to take all of Vanessa's magic--and the help of a gorgeous Demi-Fae with a sword, not to mention a telepathic dog--to stop her.
“Memories of Magic,” by Elva Birch. An emergency vet gets an unexpected visit from a Christmas elf (not really) with a living plastic toy pegasus (really!)
“A Dog’s Chance,” by Celia Lake. Magician Anna keeps crossing paths with the mysterious dog-walking Una while investigating a case of magical hedgehogs on Hampstead Heath.
“Five Quests and the Oracle,” by Pamela Dean. A new Liavek novelette. Dri’s first acting role in a children’s play is complicated by her obstreperous cat, a pair of menacing wizards, and another first-time actress who wants to do more together than just practice their lines.
“The Mating Call of the Teleporting Warbler,” by Aster Glenn Gray. A winged cat flies love letters back and forth between a professor and a naturalist studying teleporting warblers.
New magic brings new challenges.
Charged with creating a magical journal that would allow rapid communication during the Great War, Lynet has worked with a papermaker to overcome the technical challenges.
But brilliant magical innovation isn't enough. When she returns from a leave after the death of her father, Lynet is told they have to make more journals, cheaper and faster. The last thing she needs is a set of unskilled hands assigned to help her at this impossible task, and she's dubious that a man will be more of a help than a hinderance given her ongoing problems with most of the men of the research department.
Reggie is recently invalided out of the Army but has no relevant skills other than being a magically trained Schola man. When he's assigned to help Lynet, he's not sure how much use he'll be. He’s soon swept up in Lynet’s ambitious project and fascinated by her skills and knowledge.
Together, Reggie and Lynet must figure out how to get the magical materials they need for the project and move forward despite unexpected obstacles. Their mission is quickly complicated by odd goings on with other research in the department, something that might change the War itself!
Bound For Perdition is the first book in the Mysterious Arts series. A cosy historical fantasy romance set in 1917 in the magical city of Albion, Britain’s magical community, it is a great entry to Celia Lake’s Albion books. Bound for Perdition is full of bookbinding, coming to grips with injury, navigating class differences, and making a new future in a rapidly changing world.
Enjoy this kind and gentle 1920s historical fantasy romance series set in the magical community of Great Britain.
Ferry found freedom as a governess.
Born and raised to be an obedient daughter of the upper class, Ferry refused to marry the awful man her parents chose for her. Instead, she took a position as a governess in a country house deep in the New Forest.
Now spring has come to England, she can finally spend time in the nearest village and explore the magical, mysterious, and possibly dangerous forest around her chosen home.
Rufus has great power and no future.
The Great War changed everything for the worse. Rufus came home terrified of being buried alive and without the magical training he desperately needed. Now he's lost all of his family and any hope of building a better life.
Rufus is down to his last few coins when he saves one of Ferry's charges from a cranky New Forest pony. She's grateful, but she's also kind, the first kindness he's known in weeks.
When a local smuggler offers him a lifechanging amount of money to do just one job, he knows there must be a catch. But it's the only way to have a future, never mind one with Ferry. She comes from a different world, and Rufus has the sense to know it.
When the smuggler's demands, interference from the newly returned local lord, and the remaining scars from World War I all tangle together, Rufus and Ferry find themselves in grave danger.
Outcrossing is the first novel in the Mysterious Charm series. All of Celia Lake's Albion books exploring the magical community of the British Isles can be read in any order. Full of magical creatures, New Forest ponies, village life, and first love, Outcrossing is a gentle romantic fantasy with a swirl of sex set in 1922 with a happily ever after ending. Enjoy!
Lord Geoffrey Carillon wants to do the impossible.
He needs to get an imprisoned alchemist doing key research out of Germany before the world gets even worse. Carillon's cover as a slightly daffy aristocrat will get him where he needs to be, but he can't do this mission alone. He has many magical skills, but not the ones he needs to free his friend.
Alexander is a stranger in his own land.
A skilled and powerful member of the Council, Alexander is responsible for tending the land magic of Albion. However, the Council uses him as their enforcer, adeptly doing terrible and necessary work from the shadows. When Carillon proposes the expedition into Austria and Germany, can Alexander carry off the subterfuge and still keep his hands clean and his inner self barricaded in enemy territory?
Any two professionals can tolerate each other in service of a goal.
That's true even if Carillon has excellent reason to distrust the Council, and Alexander has just as much reason to keep everyone at arm's length. When matters move from possible blackmail into a sought after invitation to a remote schloss, Carillon and Alexander find their lives entangled in ways neither of them had ever dreamed of.
Best Foot Forward takes place in 1935 in the magical communities of Great Britain, Vienna, and Berlin. It is an enemies to "it's complicated" M/M romance full of espionage, magic, extreme competence under pressure, music, and healing from the traumas of the Great War. It also contains an epilogue novella, Intimacies of the Seasons, following Alexander and Carillon through the next year of their lives.
Thalia wants to make an impact.
Thalia's life is full of artists, authors, and other creative minds, but she's barely keeping herself together. After yet another rejection of her writing, she's willing to keep an eye out on a remote home on the edge of Dartmoor while her reclusive great-aunt takes a rest cure.
Adam hasn't been the same since the Great War.
Adam's family have long since run out of tolerance for his continuing shell shock. His uncle's broken leg is the perfect excuse to get Adam out of the house - at least he can make himself useful fetching and carrying. Adam's not at all sure he can be any sort of help to anyone. When he visits his uncle's apple orchard, he's even more confused by what he finds - and no one else seems to find the late-ripening apples at all unusual.
The house has its own secrets.
At first, the house seems a pleasant enough retreat for Thalia. The housekeeper and maid are competent, if distant. The food is wonderful, and she didn't have to buy or cook it herself. But there's the odd noise from the attic, the locked rooms, the ageless photographs. When she meets Adam, they at least agree that something is odd. Can they discover the secret and change their futures?
Mistress of Birds is the seventh book of the Mysterious Powers series, exploring the institutions of Albion during and after the Great War. All of Celia Lake's Albion books exploring the magical community of the British Isles can be read in any order.
It is full of gothic mystery, feeling out of place, apples, birds, and how to move forward into a new stage of life. Enjoy this charming romantic fantasy set in 1927 with a happily ever after ending!
Enjoy this gentle and kind historical fantasy romance set in the magical community of Great Britain after the Great War.
Lydia yearns to make her name as a journalist
More to the point, Lydia can't keep going as she has. There's never enough money, nor enough time. She's always scrambling, never sure of the ground beneath her or whether she can rely on anyone for help.
Galen needs to figure out who he is now.
The last year has brought too much change. His parents are rightfully under house arrest, and Galen and his brother are setting up new lives. Restoring the family business after it was nearly run into the ground by a serious of bad decisions is only the first problem.
But Galen knows people.
When Lydia asks help investigating the aftermath of an odd news story, Galen is intrigued. So are his friends in the secret society Galen has been part of since his school years. The investigation begins with a horse race, but it soon leads them from the clubs to a decadent house party to a far more dangerous gathering that could change everyone's life forever.
Point By Point is the sixth book of the Mysterious Powers series, exploring the institutions of Albion during and after the Great War. All of Celia Lake's Albion books exploring the magical community of the British Isles can be read in any order.
It is full of the power of friendship, creative solutions, horse-racing, journalism, and powerful ritual magic. Enjoy this charming romantic fantasy with a swirl of sex set in 1926 with a happily ever after ending!
Enjoy this kind and gentle 1920s historical fantasy romance series set in the magical community of Great Britain.
Mabyn keeps her commitments.
The land magic in Suffolk has been failing for years. When the current Lord asks the Council for help, Mabyn knows it’s her obligation to see it through. Even if that means immersing herself in a role she failed at in her younger and more optimistic days decades ago. Back when she was married.
Cyrus likes a challenge.
He doesn’t know Mabyn well, but Cyrus does have a gift for ritual, and a broad experience of the world. A widower with a grown daughter, he’s up for tracking down a lost heir and seeing if they can learn to take up the land magics.
When they arrive at Baddock Hall, it’s clear there’s more going on than the current Lord’s troubles. The land is boggy, the gardens are failing, the bees have fled, and there’s no obvious cause. Together, Mabyn and Cyrus must face their own pasts while getting to the root of the problem and making space for the future.
The Hare and the Oak is the fifth book of the Mysterious Powers series, exploring the institutions of Albion during and after the Great War. All of Celia Lake’s Albion books exploring the magical community of the British Isles can be read in any order.
It is full of land magic, a late in life romance, a failing family line, and healing old wounds to the heart and soul. Enjoy this charming romantic fantasy with a swirl of sex set in 1926 with a happily ever after ending!
Enjoy this kind and clever historical fantasy romance set in the magical community of Great Britain after the Great War.
Thesan loves the stars.
As the Astronomy professor at Schola, Albion's leading magical school, she's made a life full of teaching, observation, and research. She wants what is best for her students, all of them.
Thesan is looking forward to a year of learning, and the magic of the approaching near total solar eclipse.
Isembard has lived in the shadows.
Younger son of a noble family, he's always felt second-best. Last year, he agreed to act as bodyguard to two young men from noble families, as well as teaching at Schola. His second year should be easier.
Only, it doesn't seem like that. One of his mentors has come back as a teacher, which is wonderful and infuriating, often in the same conversation. Another new teacher seems determined to drag the school back to the 1800s. A group of students are definitely up to something suspicious. And one of Isembard's wards is stubbornly set on a course that is going to get him killed sooner than later.
That's before you get to the rest of the school year, full of a musical revue, staff meetings, expectations, and the fact Isembard has invited Thesan to a series of extravagent parties over the winter holidays.
Eclipse is the third book of the Mysterious Powers series, exploring the institutions of Albion during and after the Great War. All of Celia Lake's Albion books exploring the magical community of the British Isles can be read in any order. A staffroom romance between teachers, it is full of astronomy, progressive education, and coming to grips with your past. Enjoy this charming romantic fantasy with a swirl of sex set in 1924 and 1925 with a happily ever after ending!
Enjoy this kind and creative 1906 historical fantasy romance set in the magical community of Great Britain.
Alysoun wants more than duty.
Born into the aristocratic circles of Albion's upper class, Alysoun has done everything expected of her. She has married well, produced two healthy children, and handled her social obligations with grace.
It's not enough. Her husband is kind but distant, and she lives with ongoing mysterious pain. Worst of all, she is frankly bored. When Alysoun spots something odd in a stained glass exhibition at the museum, she seizes the opportunity. Perhaps it will finally give them something to talk about.
Richard lives for honour.
As a captain of Albion's Guard, he spends his days solving problems. As Lord of the land, he makes sure his estates in England are thriving. It leaves little time for anything else, even his wife or children. He's sure they understand. He was brought up the same way.
When Richard's mentor is injured, the ground collapses under his feet, shaking up all of his assumptions about how his marriage, his oaths, and his life work. The question is, can he figure out how to juggle his responsibilities and two different investigations in time?
Pastiche is a standalone novel of 90,000 words. All of Celia Lake's Albion books exploring the magical community of the British Isles can be read in any order. It is full of stained glass, living with chronic illness, an arranged marriage turned love match, and family of choice. Enjoy this charming romantic fantasy with a swirl of sex set in 1906 with a happily ever after ending!
The Great War is over, and Clara's husband Owen has finally come home. All he wants is to set up as a shoemaker and enjoy a peaceful marriage.
Nothing about Owen's return is easy.
There's not enough money for Owen to start up his own business. Worse, he's having trouble finding work, like many other returning soldiers, and everything's getting more expensive. Clara's worried about running her aunt's apothecary shop while her aunt is away. Things at home are awkward and uncomfortable. Neither of them knows how to turn a wartime romance into a proper marriage.
When a lucky break gets him a new job backstage in a magical theatre, Owen is hopeful that his life - and Clara's - are beginning to turn around. Unfortunately, the new job brings new worries, and one of Clara's customers is taking a more personal interest in her than she's comfortable with. There might be a way to solve all their troubles, if they can just remember why they fell in love in the first place, and learn to trust each other.
Shoemaker's Wife is a romance about falling in love for a second time and learning how to have a happy marriage. Join Clara and Owen for shoemaking, a winter pantomime, the challenges of rebuilding a life after war, and all the ways kindness makes a difference. The second novel in the Mysterious Arts series about the magical community of Great Britain, it can be read in any order.
When he is asked a question that August, Gabe knows he must answer yes. His answer will change him, his family, and everything around him. There is no other way through but keeping his word and dealing with the consequences.
No one said he had to do it the way anyone else expects.
Upon A Summer's Day is a short novel that takes place in the autumn and winter of 1940 as World War II moves into a second year with the start of the Blitz Join Gabe, his wife, his family, and their allies in unweaving a tangle of ancient magics, turning assumptions on their heads, and refusing to follow destructive traditions. The fourth book in the Land Mysteries series, Upon A Summer's Day directly follows the events of Old As The Hills, and is best read in sequence.
It is the early months of WWII and Rathna already has an idea of how bad it might get. If she can make the final connections she needs to create a new portal in a matter of weeks rather than years, she might just be able to get a few more people out of Germany's ever expanding grasp. But she's also been asked to take on a new apprentice. Rathna has no idea whether he'll be willing to help, if she can trust him, or if he can trust her enough to do what needs to be done.
Her husband Gabe has a challenge that will use every single one of his skills and then some. He's been charged by the Council to coordinate magical responses to the war, not only in Albion itself, but among the many esoteric and occult groups of Great Britain. His own apprentice is brilliant, in a different way than Gabe, but this project will ask everything of them both.
Together, Gabe and Rathna have built their lives to bend their passions, talents, and magics to making things better for the world around them, including their three growing children. Now their war work is going to separate them, certainly for months, possibly for much longer. As they tangle with ancient magics, seeking new ways forward, there are more unanswerable questions, tremendous risks, and a few glimmers of hope.
Old As The Hills follows Gabe and Rathna's adventures from the autumn of 1939 through the summer of 1940, a time of desperate plans to save lives and hold back invasion. It is full of ancient fae magic, the power of place, urgent witchcraft rituals, and unexpected encounters. The Land Mysteries series explores the Second World War in the magical community of Albion and is best read in order.
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