The Talking Mace

In Inanna’s Bargain, ancient ceremonial objects exhibit magical powers associated with their divine originals. This excerpt from Chapter 21 describes Kianu’s encounter with such an object. As I prayed to the warrior god, my attention was captured by a large battle-mace displayed to one side of the cult statue, on a high shelf above theContinue reading “The Talking Mace”

The Entrance Gate

In my historical fantasy world, stories about the Anzu’s theft were already well known during the Sargonic period. Representations of lion-headed eagles adorned temples dedicated to Ninurta as well as Enlil. In the holy city of Nippur, the E-Kur Temple itself displayed images of the Anzu, as described in Inanna’s Bargain: The entrance gate featuredContinue reading “The Entrance Gate”

Deities Within

Where is God? Humans have long pondered this concept, envisioning deities as exalted beings residing in the Heavens and the Underworld, as well as omnipotent forces present everywhere and within all of us. In Inanna’s Bargain, I made this latter idea more tangible with my protagonists. The following excerpt is from Chapter 24: “I’ve oftenContinue reading “Deities Within”

Fantastic Usmu

Usmu appears in my historical fantasy world as a truly liminal deity, with the ability to shift his physical appearance and assume both male and female guises. As I developed his fictitious character, I was inspired by the gender-bending attributes of Inanna/Ishtar, and by Enki’s creation of sexless beings who could cross the borders ofContinue reading “Fantastic Usmu”

The Willow Grove

Phenomenologically, we know the world through the sensory experiences of our bodies. And yet, the light from outside the cave invites us to consider different kinds of awareness. Usmu asks, “Does the beauty of the garden exist separate from your sensory perception of it?” Kianu responds by expressing his desire for a sublime union withContinue reading “The Willow Grove”


INANNA’S BARGAIN – PRE-ORDER NOW! How did ancient Sumerians and Akkadians make sense of the incredible stories circulating about their gods, heroes, and rulers? How did they distinguish between truth and fiction? These questions inspired first-time novelist Claire Sulos in her new series of historical fantasy fiction books set in ancient Mesopotamia. With a mysteriousContinue reading “INANNA’S BARGAIN”