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The Horn

A new series from the world of Dreaming Death

The Horn: Oathbreaker (Book 1)

Read the First Chapter here!


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From the world of Dreaming Death, we follow Amal, Lady Horn as she and her guards try to preserve one of the great secrets of Larossa: an abandoned Fortress. The Cince Empire want its secrets, and will do anything to get someone inside. The Oathbreakers–those members of each of the Six Families who speak to their Fortresses–all suspect that the Fortress is still alive.

Amal, the chief of the Oathbreakers, is one of only a handful of people aware of the true dangers the abandoned Fortress of Salonen presents. Now they must decide whether to wake the sleeping Fortress so it can defend itself against the Cince…or kill it forever.

Dalyan doesn’t know why he was sent to find the abandoned Fortress, what makes it worth the time his masters invested in training him. When the Horn arrest him for trespassing on the glacier beneath it, he goes with them willingly enough. After all, he didn’t return to his masters on schedule, and now they’re trying to kill him.

But more than that, he feels drawn to the abandoned Fortress, as if he belongs there…

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Original (Book 2)

Amal, Lady Horn, has always been called rash. She makes decisions far too quickly for the elders of the Horn Family. Bringing home a mysterious foreigner—one who has ties to her people’s ancient enemies, the Cince—is bad enough, but now she’s taken him as her lover. She might even want more from him.

Dalyan is an Original, a copy of a man long dead. The elders of the Horn Family thought they could use his singular knowledge to resurrect an ancient Fortress, a sentient underground city long abandoned by its people. But when Dalyan can’t access the memoires of the man from whom he’s copied, the elders begin to ask whether he’s an unfortunate liability instead. For Amal’s sake, Dalyan is determined to prove them wrong.

Together Amal and Dalyan work to build a coalition to raise the hidden Fortress, but they’ll need the help of Amal’s friends, of the Oathbreakers spread across the country, and—if possible—the king himself.




Overseer (Book 2)

Coming Fall 2017!

A new player has arrived at the Horn Keep, and it’s up to Amal to decide whether he’s the key to keeping her people safe, or the threat they’ve feared the most.









The Sparrow in Hiding

The Sparrow in Hiding

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Irina’s family has come to the countryside to escape the summer heat of St. Petersburg, but she discovers a new worker has been hired to maintain her family’s aviary, a one-armed man who poses an intriguing mystery.

Evgeny is hiding from a witch…and his father, who’s controlled by her. With the help of his younger sister, he’d survived the witch’s curse, but in the aftermath, he was left with only one arm, eyes that appear inhuman, and an ability to see the truth in others’ souls.

Will he ever be safe from the witch again?



Read an excerpt here.



Short Stories

Whatever Else

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Maia is a young woman with only a small gift: the ability to watch others from afar. To cement a treaty between two clans, she married Arras, a young man she’s known most of her life. But when her brother comes to visit, he reveals a shameful secret that leaves Maia questioning everything she believes about her husband.

Now she must use her small gift to determine the truth of her brother’s claim…and decide whether to stay at her husband’s side or flee him.



Read an excerpt here.

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Fleurs du Mal

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Bertrand Everslee has been sent to Paris to extract his younger brother from the clutches of a dubious woman, but when he meets her, he learns that she’s not what his family expected. Something frightening has come to Paris, embodied in Anne DuBourg…

*Originally published in Beneath Ceaseless Skies and reprinted in The Best of Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Year 3




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The Bear Girl

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Rosethorne has lived on the mountain as long as she can remember, well within Grandmother Bear’s territory, but Grandmother is old and unwell. So when the old bear demands that Rose find that spot across the mountains, what else is Rose to do?

*Originally published in WolfSongs, Volume 1


After the War

AfterTheWar_JKCheney (1)

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The final installment (chronologically) in the Golden City series,  we catch up with the Ferreira family in 1920.

 After the Great War, Alejandro Ferreira wandered across Europe, unable even to remember his name, until one night in Lisboa, a young woman recognizes him. She brings him home to his family–one he can’t recall, but very much wants to keep.

His seer’s gift has been as much of a trial as a blessing. It didn’t keep him out of trouble during the Great War, either–someone cursed him to lose his memory. Someone else is after him, wanting him to keep a secret he doesn’t even remember he has. And he quickly learns that all is not well between himself and his lovely wife. Without his memories or his seer’s gift, can Alejandro rebuild his life and unveil his stalker before they eliminate him?

Read an excerpt here.

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Dreaming Death

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In the Novels of the Golden City, J. Kathleen Cheney created a “mesmerizing”* realm where magic, history, and intrigue combine. Now, she presents a new world ruled by psychic talents and deadly magics…

Shironne Anjir’s status as a sensitive is both a gift and a curse. Though she can sense the emotions of others, her talents come with a price: physical blindness and the constant assault of others’ emotions.

A member of the royal family’s guard, Mikael Lee is able to control his feelings while awake. But in sleep, he inserts himself into others’ dreams of death unbidden and broadcasts them to every sensitive in the palace.

In a perfect world, Shironne and Mikael would maintain their distance… But when a killer brings a reign of terror to the city, using blood magic to appease a foreign god, only Shironne can decipher Mikael’s deadly dreams. And what they find will lead them into a nightmare…


Read an excerpt from the novel here.

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Praise for Dreaming Death

“Cheney is very good at sensory detail, especially blind Shironne’s perceptions as she begins exploring Mikael’s world.”—Publishers Weekly

“Dreaming Death is a book of mystery, magic, and overwhelming potential which promises more good things to come from J. Kathleen Cheney.”—The Speculative Herald

“This imaginative new fantasy world is based on a tasty mixture of psychic talents and deadly magic.”—Kirkus, February’s Speculative Fiction You Can’t Miss



Also from the world of Dreaming Death:

Shared Dreams

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This collection of three short stories introduces us to the characters in Dreaming Death in the years before they met. Mikael Lee and Shironne Anjir are tangled together in their need to solve murders.

Mikael Lee, an aide to the king’s brother, dreams his way into others deaths, and then follows the clues within back to the killer. Shironne Anjir, a young girl so sensitive to the stimuli around her that she cannot shut it out, has been sharing those dreams with him, and when a death falls closer to her doorstep, she’s the one who takes up the task of finding a killer…a path that might give her a direction for the rest of her life.

Includes three short stories: “A Mention of Death”, “Touching the Dead”, and “Endings”


Free Stories:

Read the first published story about Shironne Anjir free here.


Extra Tidbits:

Read an excerpt from the very first story from the Larossan world (chronologically)

Some information about the Families and the Houses, and a terrible hand drawn map. 

The Horn


The Seer’s Choice

sccarouselAvailable at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, Kobo, Scribd,  and more…

Genoveva Jardim’s father was a monster—a defrocked priest who used his healer’s gift to murder instead. Determined to make amends for the deaths her father brought to the Golden City, she turned her back on her life among the aristocracy. She’s chosen to work for the Special Police, learning how to use the healer’s gift she’d never even known she had. She wants to save lives instead of killing like her father.

Rafael Pinheiro has kept an eye on Miss Jardim for some time now. The very first time he met her, his seer’s gift told him he would someday marry her. What he can’t figure out is why he would choose her. She’s young and an aristocrat—hardly a match for a mere police captain raised in an orphanage. They don’t seem to have anything in common.

But when Miss Jardim’s life is threatened, everything changes…

Read an excerpt here.

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Praise for The Seer’s Choice

“Poignant. Heartfelt. Beautiful. Thrilling. This is how I describe The Seer’s Choice.” —Literature Literati Lovers

“It’s a delight.”–Abyss & Apex



The Shores of Spain

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Even as the branches of peace are being offered, there are some who still believe those who are not human should be used as chattel. And they are willing to go to great lengths to retain their power.

Newlywed siren Oriana Paredes has been appointed Ambassador to her home islands now that communication between Northern Portugual and the magical races has been restored. But convincing her people that the new Portuguese Prince’s intentions are honorable after years of persecution is difficult. And her husband, Duilio, faces his own obstacles among the sirens where males are a rare and valuable commodity with few rights.

In addition to their diplomatic mission, the two hope to uncover the truth behind Oriana’s mother’s death. Evidence suggests that Spain—a country that has been known to enslave magical beings—may have infiltrated the siren authority. Unable to leave their post, Oriana and Duilio must call on Inspector Joaquim Tavares to root out the truth.

But even his seer’s gift cannot prepare him for what he will discover.

Read an excerpt here:

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Praise for The Shores of Spain

“All in all, this is perfect for fans of the magical, the mysterious and, of course, the adventurous.”—Romantic Times

“Mesmerizing.”—Publishers Weekly


The Seat of Magic


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Magical beings have been banned from the Golden City for decades, though many live there in secret. Now humans and nonhumans alike are in danger as evil stalks the streets, growing more powerful with every kill….

It’s been two weeks since Oriana Paredes was banished from the Golden City. Police consultant Duilio Ferreira, who himself has a talent he must keep secret, can’t escape the feeling that, though she’s supposedly returned home to her people, Oriana is in danger.

Adding to Duilio’s concerns is a string of recent murders in the city. Three victims have already been found, each without a mark upon her body. When a selkie under his brother’s protection goes missing, Duilio fears the killer is also targeting nonhuman prey.

To protect Oriana and uncover the truth, Duilio will have to risk revealing his own identity, put his trust in some unlikely allies, and consult a rare and malevolent text known as The Seat of Magic….

Read an excerpt here!

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Praise for The Seat of Magic

“Intriguing and fun, the mystery unfolds like a socially conscious tour through a cabinet of curiosities.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Mesmerizing.”—Publishers Weekly

“Those who enjoy alternate history, Edwardian- or Victorian-era historical fiction with a touch of magic and mythology, will be delighted with this story.” —Booklist


The Golden City

gccarousel Available at: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Walmart, and Powell’s.

For two years, Oriana Paredes has been a spy among the social elite of the Golden City, reporting back to her people, the sereia, sea folk banned from the city’s shores….

When her employer and only confidante decides to elope, Oriana agrees to accompany her to Paris. But before they can depart, the two women are abducted and left to drown. Trapped beneath the waves, Oriana’s heritage allows her to survive while she is forced to watch her only friend die.

Vowing vengeance, Oriana crosses paths with Duilio Ferreira—a police consultant who has been investigating the disappearance of a string of servants from the city’s wealthiest homes. Duilio also has a secret: He is a seer and his gifts have led him to Oriana.

Bound by their secrets, not trusting each other completely yet having no choice but to work together, Oriana and Duilio must expose a twisted plot of magic so dark that it could cause the very fabric of history to come undone….

Read the first chapter here!

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Praise for The Golden City

Library Journal–Starred Review

Cheney’s debut is a masterpiece of historical fantasy, set in early 1900s Portugal, a time and place rarely explored in English-language fiction. The fascinating mannerisms of the age and the extreme formality of two people growing fonder of each other add a charmingly fresh appeal that will cross over to romance fans as well as to period fantasy readers.

Kirkus Reviews

An ambitious debut from Cheney: part fantasy, part romance, part police procedural and part love letter to [Portugal] in the early 1900s.


Iron Shoes

cropped-IronShoes_KindleFinal-2.jpg Available via:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Apple / Scribd IndieBound

For the first time, these three novellas are collected into one volume: Iron Shoes (Nebula Finalist, Best Novella, 2010); Snow Comes to Hawk’s Folly; and Snowfall.

Iron Shoes

Imogen Hawkes is running out of time. She must come up with enough money to prevent the bank from foreclosing on her farm. All her hopes are pinned on her horse winning the Special Stakes.

But things keep going wrong, and it’s soon clear someone is determined to stop her. As race day draws closer, Imogen finds unexpected sources of help…including the new stallion she’s purchased from Boston, who’s not at all what he seems.

Despite a life spent avoiding it, Imogen learns that magic may be her best ally….

Snow Comes to Hawk’s Folly:
Imogen has the life she’s always wanted. Her farm is thriving, as is her family. But a guest comes to the farm, bringing trouble in his wake. When Imogen’s son disappears, how far will she go to get him back? Is it magic? Or something more mundane? In her family, the mundane is rarely to blame…

Lourdes Medina has left everything she knows. Following a vision in a dream, she’s gone north to Saratoga Springs to buy back the mare her brother sold out from under her. But the horse’s new owner, Finn, makes her an interesting offer in return for the horse. Against her better judgment, Lourdes becomes entangled in his family’s problems…and it seems she’s unwittingly gained an enemy, a woman who will go to any length to get the husband she wants.

Read an excerpt here.

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 Praise for Iron Shoes: Tales from Hawk’s Folly Farm

“It is exceedingly rare for a book to make its way into my shelf of comfort reads. This one may get worn out with re-reading. But reading the beauty and love in all three of the novellas in Iron Shoes soothes my soul.”—Abyss & Apex

“Cheney has crafted a lovely story of romance, magic, intrigue, and horse racing set in upstate New York early in the last century.”—SFRevu (Iron Shoes)