The Unseen Hand

By Narcisse Navarre and Marzio Ombra

The Unseen Hand

Epic Fantasy

For years, the faceless terror known as the Hand of Fate has been secretly manipulating the port city of Reyza for her shadowy ends. Those she favors rise in power while those who betray her are never heard from again. When the opportunity to eliminate a powerful dynasty presents itself, the Hand of Fate conspires with a sadistic diplomat who shares the king’s bed. Together, they hatch a plan to assassinate their rivals.

The plan is flawless, every variable calculated—except for one.

On the night that the Hand of Fate’s hired assassin makes his move, a notorious thief is also making his. Jarle Jadien has had it with the gray-haired harpy whom he serves and succumbs to the greatest temptation of all: the Ensther estate, home to the king’s betrothed, and a fortune of jewels. When the risky heist takes a disastrous turn, Jarle finds himself in possession of a treasure he has no intention of keeping: Avaren Ensther is beauty and intrigue in one, and a keeper of secrets that reach far beyond Jarle’s world of whiskey and disrepute.

Reyza’s infamous thief has had his heart stolen from under his nose, but time will tell if his sirenic temptress proves worthy.

Within the city walls, a retired war-hero investigates the conspiracy and attempts to prevent an all-out war. However, he finds that success is not a foregone conclusion. Too many vengeful plots have festered, and too much blood has spilled.

As the moons reach a cataclysmic alignment, unleashing the force of the tides, neither hero, criminal, nor all-powerful monarch; can escape the tendrils of fate.


Narcisse Navarre

Narcisse Navarre was born in Havana, Cuba in 1975. She grew up surrounded by nature in a world nearly devoid of media. Prompted by her father’s nightly tales of the Greek Gods, folklore, and magic, Narcisse’s imagination blossomed into an extraordinary force in her life. In 1984 she emigrated to the United States where she realized her dream of becoming an artist, and author. Narcisse is an avid world traveler and adventure seeker who incorporates her experiences into her work. She lives in an enchanted castle in upstate New York with her husband and cat.


Marzio Ombra

Marzio Ombra was born and raised in Northern California. During his senior year of high school, he moved to New Jersey, where he currently resides with his son and a hellcat. An off-and-on-again writer for most of his life, it was his best friend, Narcisse Navarre, who prompted him to take writing seriously. The Unseen Hand is Marzio’s first novel (but not his last). Beyond writing, he is a lifelong D&D devotee and an imaginative Dungeon Master. In his spare time, he can be found gardening, hiking, or gaming, and is always ready to share a glass of whiskey.

First Edition, Limited to 1,000 copies

The Unseen Hand Hardcover

The Unseen Hand: Illumidar Book I is bound in black cloth with gilt titles on the spine and a full color embossed dust jacket. The book has been designed by Narcisse Navarre and illustrated by fantasy artist Agata Fiszer. The first edition is limited to 1,000 hand numbered copies.

Praise for The Unseen Hand

“Your introductory chapter/author’s note is so well written and all the work you have done is incredibly professional, starting from the cover photo to the illustrators you hired. At the same time you summarized the main plot points real well.”

– Wattpad Comment by Evelyn Hail

“This a really wonderful start to what I envision will be a truly magical read. Your descriptions are beautiful and eloquently put together, helping to build a clear picture of the world in which the story takes place. It’s refreshing to find another book where so much forethought has been put in to the world building, allowing the scene to be thoroughly set before the actors take to the stage. The map is stunning and I am also completely in awe of the charts, all very inspiring!”

Wattpad Comment by Ellena Scott

“Delightful. I love how you’ve brought your characters to life with a feathered cap here, a quirk of an eyebrow there. Very nice start. I’m looking forward to more. 

– Wattpad comment by JWCMaher

“Beautiful vocabulary! I’m always rapt by how you weave your sentences and paragraphs. I like Avaren a lot. I’m glad to have found a story where characters don’t seem to fit into any kind of pre-existing cliché. They’re just themselves.” 

Wattpad Comment by VenomousKitsune

“I love how you take time away from what I perceive to be the primary POV’s (Jars and Avaren) and explore the inner workings of the sociopolitical structure in Reyza, it is an utterly fascinating culture you two have created. Bravo!

Wattpad comment by Shannon Tolhurst

“If you guys roleplay like you write, it would be some epic rpg’ing! Great writing and very engaging. I thought you handled the interaction and innuendo between Jarle and Marcella brilliantly.”

– Wattpad Comment by Kelly J. Burke

“This is fantastic! I was only going to read one chapter and now I have read three. Just great.”

Wattpad Comment by Leed21

I Didn’t Write a Word in 2020, But I Did Dare Mighty Things

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COVID, Life, Works in Progress, Italy, And Everything In Between

February feels like years ago, doesn’t it? Since then, we’ve launched and completed our first successful Kickstarter (which Marzio will tell you more about in a later blog post), shipped out hundreds of hardcover first editions of The Unseen Hand around the globe, and...

Our Epic Fantasy Novel The Unseen Hand is Published!

Our Epic Fantasy Novel The Unseen Hand is Published! Woohoo! And one lucky winner will win a copy! I wrote about the decision to self-publish in my last post— We Are On The Road To Self-Publishing. That update covered the reasons for our decision to print The Unseen...

We’re on the Road to Self-Publishing

Perhaps another query might have done it, or the one after, or the one after that. Who knows? However, after banging our heads on the barred gates of traditional publishing, Narcisse and I had to make a decision. What do we really want to happen with our book? Sure,...

Cogs, A Science Fiction Short Story by Marzio Ombra

The year is 2041. Cybernetic implants enable the linking of man and machine like never before. These enhanced soldiers are called 'Cogs,' as in the term 'cogs in the machine.' Adrejan "Wr8th" Romero is cybernetically enmeshed with a hovertank he calls "Kate." When he is plugged in, Kate becomes an extension of his mind and body. In the hellish chaos of war, Romero will discover his true calling. If he can survive combat with his greatest enemy.

The Death of a Witch, the Inspiration Behind My NaNoWriMo 2019 Story

Not too long ago, a tweet in my Twitter feed polled, “How do you come up with ideas for stories?”  The thing is, there really is no singular way inspiration strikes. At least not for me. Most of the time, my ideas stem from one of two sources. Primarily, I am and have...

Fantasy Map Tutorial: Part III, Naming and Typography

In Part II of the tutorial, I discussed iconography. In this post, I will show you how to add place names and use typography to further clarify places in your world. A settlement’s location affects everything about the way it develops, from the reason it exists in...

Fantasy Map Tutorial: Part II, Next Steps

In Part I of the tutorial, I explained some of the basics of making a map. In this post, I will go further into the process by showing you how to add shorelines and cities. The picture I’ve drawn above shows a river flowing out to the sea with various...

Fantasy Map Tutorial: Part I, The Basics

A map adds a wonderful dimension to a fantasy book. It inspires curiosity, helps you visualize your world, and transports the viewer/reader to another world without the need for text. Maps immerse the reader in the author’s imagination and add an extra layer of...

A Shadow In The Ice: A Short Story by Narcisse Navarre

When calamity strikes, an ancient queen is banished by a clan of prehistoric nomads. Five thousand years later, she returns to the world of men.

Innocents: A Jack the Ripper Short Story by Narcisse Navarre

Greetings, I got inspired to write, Innocents back in October 2017 when I heard that Shaun Allan and Greg Carrico were running a horror contest centered on Jack the Ripper. The concept for this story came to me as soon as I saw their call for entries. I sat down at...

New Covers for The Tendrils of Fate

Book news, finally! Wow, it has been a while since we’ve updated! Sorry about that. Marzio and I have been busy applying polish to The Tendrils of Fate and working on a bunch of fascinating projects. We’ve decided to split The Tendrils of Fate into a...

A Dream of Florence: A Near Future Travel Story by Marzio Ombra

It is often written that technology isolates us. Too many opinion pieces blame our screens for the loss of human interaction. Virtual reality is painted as a false experience, ultimately empty of emotional connection. A Dream of Florence, by Marzio Ombra, is the story of how virtual and augmented reality creates intimacy and transforms the endangered dream of an elderly couple into a reality.

Authenticity: A Near Future Travel Story by Narcisse Navarre

In an age of widespread facial recognition, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence, travel isn't what it used to be; it's better. This short story by Narcisse Navarre is for the Marriott Hotels #TravelBrilliantly Writing Contest.

Song of Isonei, An Illumidar Short Story by Narcisse Navarre

Poet laureate Irilio has just discovered his father's plans to wed him to the dullest woman in Laremlis. He vents his outrage during a stroll through The Thicket and ironically finds himself at the well of Zezen, goddess of sacred unions. In a fit, he defiles the tranquil waters, drawing the attention of a heartbroken veteran who shares his supernatural story of love and loss. The tragic tale inspires an epic ballad and possibly a curse.

Our Kickstarter campaign has ended!

222 backers pledged $6,155 to help bring our project to life. That’s so awesome! Thank you.


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