Voyagers into the Unknown

Written by Charli Mills

Charli Mills, a born buckaroo, makes literary art accessible at She writes about the veteran spouse experience and women forgotten to history.

March 11, 2016

Ruchira Khanna Novel 2Ruchira Khanna, one of the Rough Writers at Carrot Ranch, has published her second novel. Voyagers into the Unknown is a modern tale which takes place in Agra, India where tourists visit historic landmarks, including the famed Taj-Mahal.

If you visit Ruchira’s blog, Abracabadra, you’ll learn that she’s full of life-affirming mantras. Her flash fiction at Carrot Ranch takes on that particular perspective. Mantras are words that can shift one’s mindset. And Voyagers into the Unknown is a novel based on the power of a protagonist who alters the perspectives of his clients by showing them powerful historic sites and speaking in uplifting ways even when the others are dark, moody or self-centered.

What Ruchira does so well is to portray India authentically among a cast of realistic global characters. Cultural perspectives collide and each character has the choice to change, or not. Even the tour guide who acts as a change agent is not immune from inner growth.

Numerous small stories combine to tell the grand story of the group as a whole. Each character is different and offers the reader multiple perspectives as to how to respond. There is no right or wrong way, just as in real life we are complex human beings with multiple faults and saving grace.

There’s a scene in the book where the protagonist, an Agra tour guide with a knack for fixing broken lives, let’s his latest group absorb the monument full of love and beauty, the Taj-Majal. Through the temple’s story and the tour, the reader watches as if part of the group. It’s a grounding point in the novel, as if to express we are all connected in time and across cultures. That love stories can still move us and be a part of our lives. How do we accept that? It’s the heart of the voyage.

If you know Ruchira from the flash fiction challenges you might be surprise to learn this author was once a biochemist. Now she channels universal energy as a Reiki Master and empowers readers to take on positive life mantras. She also supports the growing community of authors and bloggers from India.

A personal thanks to Ruchira — this buckaroo is mighty pleased to be asked to read an early draft and be quoted on the back cover! It truly is a vibrant story and one that embraces global and cultural diversity. It’s an uplifting read.

Voyagers into the Unknown is available from Balboa Press, a division of Hay House Publishing. You can order a copy from Amazon in both digital or print formats.

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  1. A. E. Robson

    Congratulations on publishing your second book, Ruchira!

    • ruchira

      Thank you so much A.E.Robson.

  2. Annecdotist

    Lovely review, Charli, and congratulations Ruchira. That cover is absolutely gorgeous, especially how the frame echoes the shape of the tomb.
    I was interested to go across to your publisher package to look at the costs – anything to share on how this tends to work out?

    • ruchira

      Thank you Anne.

      The Publisher is good. I took the lowest package, and am very happy with their delivery. The cover page is courtesy them 🙂

      Although my intention is to get absorbed by Hay House thus, took Balboa in the first place with the hopes that they would notice my title (fingers crossed!)

      Good luck with your next publication. I loved the blurb on your “Sugar n Snails” Will pick it and read/review on amazon!

      Once again Thanks to Charli for giving us all this platform not only to connect but to create a wonderful n inspiring community!

      • Charli Mills

        I think Hay House Publishing is a great fit for you and a good strategy to use their division to get connected. This community is as wonderful as all who write here! Thanks for being a vital part!

    • Charli Mills

      Ann, I like the cover, too. It’s stunning and stands out.

  3. Sarah Brentyn

    Congratulations! ???? Sounds interesting and the cover is beautiful. I didn’t know you practiced Reiki. So do I. What an amazing modality.

    • Charli Mills

      Really? I didn’t know that! Yes, it is!

      • Sarah Brentyn

        Yes. ?? Not a Reiki master but level 2. Love it.

    • ruchira

      Thank you Sarah. It is a pleasure to know you esp since you too channel the universal energy 😉
      I get amazed by how it is gradually being accepted even in healthcare.
      Just a couple of weeks back…Stanford Healthcare is embracing such professionals…who would have imagined !!!

      • Charli Mills

        There was a program in Minnesota that was using different healing modalities, including Reiki and acupuncture to diminish the levels of stress in military soldiers. Last I heard it was having good results.

  4. jeanne229

    Intriguing review and yes, congratulations Ruchira on the publication of your book. Very exciting. I had the chance to visit the Taj Mahal some twenty years ago. What an intriguing setting for a novel. From the review, it seems a “pilgrimage” story, the different travelers with their varied purposes and concerns meeting at this crossroads where where the symbol of human love and beauty affects them all.

    • Charli Mills

      A pilgrimage story is a good way to summarize it.

      • ruchira

        good way to summarize, Jeanne.

        Thank you!

  5. Norah

    Congratulations, Ruchira. I wish you much success with your book. I really enjoyed your review Charli, and totally agree with everyone else about the cover. Superb!

    • ruchira

      Thank you Norah.

      Appreciate your support via the tweets. Glad you enjoyed the review via Charli too.

    • Charli Mills

      Thanks, Norah! It’s a good book to read and it’s one we can judge by its attractive cover. 🙂

      • Norah

        It’s good to know the content is equally as attractive as the cover.

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