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Barbara has always had an uncanny ability to read others, but her full empathic skills emerge only after a part of her soul is crystalized into a flaming red gem. Desperate to escape her soul-crushing suburban life and to reconnect with the mysterious man who made her gem, she makes her way on foot through the terrifying NY subway tunnels to find an abandoned station. 


Zoltan Josef lives an existence of opulent bitterness. Along with a network of other gem makers, his job is to catch souls and form them into magnificent jewels. He works with referrals only, and how his clients – rising CEOs, ambitious politicians, vainglorious religious leaders — are selected is of no concern to him.

He is 110 years old. While Zoltan’s contract with the hideous Mester – who may or may not be human – promises him wealth and extended life, it also prohibits him from touching another person, or even sharing his true name. But this all changes dramatically when Barbara bursts into his life.  She breaks the spell he has been under, and he risks everything – including his life — to discover the true nature of the sinister cabal he has unwittingly been part of.  

Their base of operations is a long-forgotten 1873 subway terminal, now transformed into the Market, a hidden community of seers, shapeshifters, artisans with extraordinary skills, keepers of ancient knowledge. From here Barbara and Zoltan follow leads that take them to Budapest in a desperate race to find the truth and neutralize the Mester before he kills them.

The Burning Gem by Don Sawyer



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