Books by Betsy James for Adults and Teens


Roadsouls-cvr-hr copy


Aqueduct Press 2016

“Say yes to the Roadsouls, and you can’t unsay it.”

Timid Duuni has spent her life as abused and guarded property. Blind, arrogant Raím is determined to be again what he once was: hunter, lover, young lord of the earth. Desperate to escape their lives, the two lift up their hands to the passing Roadsoul caravan, and are—literally—flung together naked. Each of them soon learns that saying “yes” to the Roadsouls is a commitment that can’t be reversed. Nothing is as it was. Lost to their old lives, hating each other, they are swept out of their cruel old certainties into an unknown, unknowable, ever-changing world of journey and carnival, artists and wrestlers and thieves. Behind them, inexorable, pads a lion. Inexorable, too, is their inevitable encounter with it—an encounter that will change everything.

“If you long for a fantasy world that your senses could live in, and that isn’t full of scheming nobility, cynical warriors, mass hatreds, and magic as a weapon, read this book.”  Suzy McKee Charnas, author of The Vampire Tapestry and Dorothea Dreams

“Betsy James’ dual creative lives as artist and writer enable her to create an elegant variation on the classic hero’s journey.”  Jane Lindskold, author of The Firekeeper Saga

To buy Roadsouls, click here.

LATG cover enhanced

Listening at the Gate

Simon & Schuster 2006

A Tiptree Award Honor Book
A New York Public Library Best Book for the Teen Age

Can you have what you wish for? What is the price?
The world seventeen-year-old Kat knows is falling apart. With Nall, the mysterious young man she rescued from the sea, she sets out on a journey that will take them beyond the last boundary of all, to the Gate where the world is born.

“This wondrous and mournful epic…shatters certain key expectations yet remains profoundly archetypal—full of pain, beauty and heft.”   —Kirkus Reviews

To buy Listening at the Gate, click here.


Dark Heart cover

Dark Heart

Simon & Schuster 2005

What if initiation into womanhood means you must face an angry bear?

What if you fail?

Sixteen-year-old Kat has spent a year preparing for her initiation. What will she do about the young blind man she is drawn to, so handsome and so broken? And what of Nall, the man she rescued and left behind?

“Finely drawn.”  —School Library Journal

To buy Dark Heart, click here

 Long Night Dance cover

 Long Night Dance

Simon & Schuster 2005

Voices of Youth Advocates Best Fantasy

What—or who—do you dream of?

Fifteen-year-old Kat is more her bitter father’s housekeeper than his daughter—but she knows there must be more. When she finds, washed up on the beach, an injured young man of the mythical seal people, she must confront her choices. Does she have the strength to stand on her own?

“Beautifully written…with a heroine both brave and compassionate.”                                                           —The Horn Book

To buy Long Night Dance, click here.

Learn more about Betsy James’s books for younger readers:

For, click here.

All material on this site, both text and graphics, is ©BetsyJames, and may not be used commercially without her permission.

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Betsy James On Writing, World-making, and Walking on Stone

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