In addition to her music, Karen has also written several novels and short-stories. This has come about not as fulfillment of a long-deferred childhood dream, nor through an overwhelming adult ambition, but simply because story ideas have come and should not go to waste. She has long-enjoyed the historical-romances of Alexandre Dumas, Rafael Sabatini, and Justin Huntly McCarthy (to name her favorites), and had written the occasional short story. Then, one day as she prepared to leave for work, the telephone rang just once, and only a half-ring at that. Karen grew intrigued by what that half-ring could mean. The wheels began to turn, and soon she had the idea for a story that, after a number of years, and much effort, and lots of revision and rewriting, became the novel The Eye of Phoebus. She has also written an "animal" novella for adults of all ages, rather in the vein of The Wind in the Willows. A Season in Prickleblossom Wood in fact covers four seasons, and concerns the adventures of Hedgehog, Quilly-pig, and Sleepy-bear over the course of one year in their forest home. A final revision of Prickleblossom Wood is in progress and should be completed soon.

The Eye of Phoebus

The Eye of Phoebus is an historical-romance (with some science-fiction elements) set in the 1890s. In the novel, Sir Thomas Malory (descendant of the eponymous knight of Newbold Revel who wrote Le Morte d'Arthur) and Miss Alice Ellsworth (a seamstress and composer) are thrown together by fate or clumsy dialing of that new technology, the telephone. They strive against Malory's old nemesis the Baron von Bernbaden to capture The Eye of Phoebus, an ancient and long-lost source of enormous power. The story ranges from Baltimore, to Rome, to Malta, and combines swashbuckling action with romance, humor, intrigue, and a quest.

The Eye of Phoebus includes more than 70 illustrations by the author, and a CD of incidental music. The CD may be sampled at the CDs page.

We invite you to listen to a six-minute excerpt from Ch. 22 of the book, as read by Stephen Amrhein, by clicking here:

Listen to an excerpt

You may read the Prologue yourself by clicking here:

Read an excerpt (PDF)

If you would like to purchase a hardcover copy, including the CD of incidental music, you may do so by contacting Karen or by visiting the Lemon Drop Shop page.

The black-and-white edition (without CD) is also available at: Lulu Shop: The Eye of Phoebus B&W Edition

The full-color edition (not including CD) is also available at: Lulu Shop: The Eye of Phoebus Color Edition

Copyright © Karen Amrhein. All Rights Reserved.