Labyrinth of Souls


The Labyrinth of Souls Fiction Project

What: A series of dark fantasy novels inspired by the world of Labyrinth of Souls: Dungeon Solitaire.

Who: Elizabeth Engstrom, Matthew Lowes, Christina Lay, Cheryl Owen-Wilson, Eric Witchey, Stephen Vessels, Mary E. Lowd, Lisa Alber, John Reed, Pamela Herber, Cynthia Ray and more to be announced.

June 28, 2017

Benediction Denied by Elizabeth Engstrom

While hydrologist Adam Swan is engaged in humanitarian efforts to bring water to a small, isolated village in the Congo, he is kidnapped by rebel thugs and thrown into a makeshift prison. He is left to die—or worse—if his ransom is not paid. In a surprising series of events, Adam escapes his brutal captors into an underground labyrinth where reality and sanity no longer rule.

Armed with a limited amount of magic which he does not understand, he survives by employing it boldly, recklessly, desperate to return to the village above, homesick for Minnesota and normal life with his wife and daughters.

Tested to the extreme limits of his endurance, Adam navigates the labyrinth with only the company of his past behavior, the baffling magic, and the seductive temptation to succumb to the mysterious and merciless gods of the underworld. The consequences of his actions, past present, and future, take him to the brink of death—and beyond.

A fun, fast, thrilling ride by veteran author Elizabeth Engstrom, inspired by Matthew Lowes’ Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls card game.

Books2Read (click link to see buy links everywhere book is available)

July 28, 2017

Symphony of Ruin by Christina Lay

Death is stalking The City. From out of the catacombs, a deadly monster has arisen. Unfortunately for alchemist’s apprentice Remy the Rat Boy, his master is away and it’s up to Remy to discover the nature of the monster and put an end to its killing rampage. His search for answers takes him high into the elegant chambers of the city’s elite, and down into long forgotten ruins, into depths untraveled and unimagined for centuries. Lost in the ancient ruins with only ghosts and creatures of the darkness for companionship, Remy must use every ounce of wit and conjure every scrap of magic at his disposal in order to survive the labyrinth and save The City from its shadow self.

Check out the great review on Forever Phantasy  “For a great, very strange, dark comedy that provides death and mystery at every turn – I suggest Symphony of Ruin. It is well written, well paced, and Christina Lay has given me one of the most interesting and fun characters I have ever had the chance of experiencing.”


August 30, 2017

The End of All Things by Matthew Lowes


Rithik is a hunter of artifacts among the ancient cities of a long-gone, advanced civilization. Infected with ghost flesh, a fatal disease caught in the ruins, he is banished from his village and must find his way in the wastelands. With the help of a mutant dog, he ventures into the post-apocalyptic underworld in search of the answers to life and death. In the dark forgotten depths, they discover extraordinary secrets and terrible dangers hidden by the catastrophic downfall of ages past. And in the farthest reaches of the labyrinth, Rithik must face the greatest enigma of all—himself.

An incredible journey from the creator of the Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls tarot card game.


October 6, 2017

Littlest Death by Eric Witchey


An Afterlife Fantasy  by Eric Witchey

Independent Publisher Book Awards Silver Medal for Fantasy Fiction

International Book Award Visionary Fiction Winner

International Book Award Fantasy Fiction Finalist

International Book Award Best New Fiction Finalist

International Book Award Best Cross-Genre Fiction Finalist

One human soul and a little respect isn’t too much to ask for, but both are hard to get if you’ve only been a death for a thousand years.

Littlest Death yearns for the respect given to grim reapers who bring human souls from Overworld into Underworld. She works hard at the jobs she’s given. Really hard! No other death gathers in MILLIONS of souls at time like she does. Okay, they are just the souls of fungi, bacteria, and single-celled critters like amoebas, but—MILLIONS! If she could bring in just one human soul, the other deaths would stop looking down on her. Desperate to become a real death, frustrated by humans, and hounded by a Hell Puppy, she sets out to spy on the most accomplished death in the history of dying, Oldest Death. Her actions threaten the eternal flow of souls between life and death, and by the time she understands the damage she’s done, it may be too late to save herself and the souls she has hurt.


October 30, 2017

The Door of Tireless Pursuit by Stephen Vessels

Sandy’s comfortable, workaday life is rocked when he meets Lark, a mysterious woman who can manipulate time and teleport across great distances at will. What begins as a romance turns deadly when she is abducted by a sorcerer who seeks to control the metaphysical portals she defends. Determined to rescue her, Sandy is drawn farther and farther from the life he knows, into the wondrous and perilous Labyrinth of Souls. There he meets fantastic allies and adversaries, and learns that the very fabric of reality is threatened by his quest.


April, 2018

The Snake’s Song by Mary E. Lowd


Ursa Major Best Novel 2019 nominee

When a creature of the treetops listens to the song of a snake, she finds herself drawn into an adventure deep under the earth.

Witch-Hazel was never good at being a squirrel.  She could never find her lost stashes of acorns, but maybe she can prove herself by finding a treasure that matters much more — the lost Celestial Fragments of the All-Being.  Witch-Hazel’s quest takes her through labyrinths, lost mole cities, and underground kingdoms.  She faces riddles from a leontaur, an army of ghost moles, and sorcerer crabs, but she also makes unexpected friends.

Can Witch-Hazel find the Celestial Fragments and make it back to the sunlight world above?  If she survives, will she be the same squirrel who began her journey, or has she been forever changed by the snake’s song.

“Think of Alice entering Wonderland. Think of Orpheus entering Hades’ realm looking for Eurydice. Think of Dante entering the Inferno searching for Beatrice. There are wondrous beasts.” 5 star review by Fred Patten at DogPatch.Press


October 2018

Immortal’s Penance by L. A. Alber

Four trials await Malone in the mythic underworld of the ancient Celts
On the remote Isle of Man, archaeologist Malone Wolfe has made a discovery that will ensure his reputation for years to come: a bog man of gigantic proportions. Buried in peat for millennia, the ancient man—or creature?—also comes with warnings from the locals not to disturb the faery tree that guards the site. Malone scoffs at the local lore until he is dragged into the other world of Celtic legend and condemned to a treacherous journey through a realm where faeries sting, trolls talk in riddles, bloodsuckers seduce, and nothing is what it seems. Battered, tortured, and hunted by the bog man, Malone must face his dark past and make a harrowing choice if he hopes to survive.
Little does he know that even if he passes the four trials of the Immortals, his reward may be worse than the punishment.
April 1, 2019
Mountain of Ashes by John Reed

 Matt Thanos is devastated when his wife, Emily, dies in a fiery car wreck. But when an irresistible force hurls him down a wild river into a bizarre labyrinth, his dead wife calls to him from the blackness. She—or at least her spirit—is alive. To save her, he must fight his way out of this endless underground chamber, a world ruled by Vaatu, god of the darkness, and cross a time-shifting desert to a crystal city ruled by Raava, god of light. Between these two worlds lies a mysterious mountain made from the ashes of dead souls. Here, the two gods fight for control, a war that has raged for millennium. Since Matt’s escape from the labyrinth has disrupted the balance of power, both gods seek to destroy him. The only way to save himself and Emily is to tear the mountain down and destroy their perverted kingdoms.

August 4, 2020

Bayou’s Lament by Cheryl-Owen Wilson


Veya Marie St. James has vowed to never again set foot on the Island of her birth—a strip of land buried deep in the swamps of southern Louisiana.  Her childhood memories are rampant with ancient superstitions and the bizarre rituals of her estranged mother.  Veya long ago rejected that life and those beliefs, but when a mysterious illness threatens her daughter’s life, it all leads to the Island. Veya swore she would never go back, but the Island calls to her, and now it’s calling with her daughter’s voice.


December 21, 2020

The Mole Train by John Reed

Vince Richards, a New York private eye, stumbles into a strange, hidden world when a prospective client is hanged in Tompkins Square Park. Someone is targeting a local coven of Wiccans and the details of their deaths mirror the Salem witch trials of 1692. When the Wiccans hire Vince to investigate, the weirdness intensifies: a voodoo priestess plots to take of the drug trade in lower Manhattan; a phantom train races by, announcing itself with a haunting whistle only Vince can hear; Wiccans and mobsters battle in the streets; and a ghostly encounter convinces Vince that his prospective client may not be dead after all.  When he finally climbs aboard the phantom train and races past the boundaries of time and space, he discovers the trick is not getting on—but getting off.