Rex Rising (Elei's Chronicles, #1)

Rated 4.60/5 based on 10 reviews
In a world where parasites create new human races, Elei leads a peaceful life as aircar driver — until a mysterious attack on his boss sends him fleeing with a bullet in his side and the fleet at his heels. Pursued for a secret he does not possess, he has but one thought: to stay alive. Yet unless he finds out this deadly secret, he’s a dead man. More
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About Chrystalla Thoma

Greek Cypriot with a penchant for dark myths, good food, and a tendency to settle down anywhere but at home, Chrystalla likes to write about fantastical creatures, crazy adventures, and family bonds. She lives in Cyprus with her husband and her vast herds of books. Her stories can be found in Alienskin magazine, Lorelei Signal, the Shine Journal, Encounters Magazine, and Bards and Sages ezine i.a. She is also an author for MuseItUp Publishing where you can find her YA Urban Fantasy novella Dioscuri.

Here is the link to Chrystalla’s writing blog where you can find short stories, samples and link to other longer works:


Learn more about Chrystalla Thoma


Rex Rising
In a world where parasites create new human races, Elei leads a peaceful life — until a mysterious attack on his boss sends him fleeing with a bullet in his side.

Also by This Author


C.M. Brown reviewed on on May 13, 2013

Rex Rising is the first installment of Elei's Chronicles by Crystalla Thoma, and is a fast paced sci-fi, telling the story of Elei, who is running for his life after his boss and mother figure is murdered in an attack, which takes place in front of his eyes.

They story is set in the future where food and water is scarce and a race of women rule society, with a heavy hand.

The people of this world are kept poor and almost destitute, while the ruling race live in luxury. Unbeknown to Elei, he holds the key to the future of this world as he desperately flees from his persuers.

I found the book a great read and the story quite unique. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes intrigue, sci-fi and espionage, packed into a mysterious setting.
(review of free book)
Lisa- Bookworm Lisa reviewed on on April 13, 2013

Imagine a world where the water is controlled by an elite race. Where the people of the world scrounge and live in dives where much of the area is uninhabited and derelict. This is the world of Rex Rising.

Elei is a driver for a prominent pharmaceuticals person. She is murdered, but before she dies, she shoots him, but a bullet is never found. He now has the elite race hunting him. Everyplace he goes, destruction follows. He is hunted for information that he doesn't remember, the final words his boss told him before her death.

This is a very interesting book and fast paced plot. Elei has parasites infecting his body. The elite race has a parasite, that what they use to control the world. The theories behind the use of parasites is very interesting. One parasite is used to tame and control another.

The book has some mild swearing and a semi-graphic sexual situation.
(reviewed 2 years after purchase)
Kristin TPW reviewed on on Dec. 10, 2011

I'm not a science fiction kind of girl. I admit a deep love for the paranormal but most things in the sci-fi realm leave me either confused or rolling my eyes. So when a request came in to read a book about parasites forming new races, I was a bit hesitant. But, in the true spirit of 'I read everything', I agreed to give Rex Rising a read (with another sci-fi loving reviewer in the wings just in case I couldn't finish it).

I shouldn't have worried.

The world Chrystalla builds is vivid and exciting. From the descriptions of the algae and fungi to the sense of neglect and squalor of the human cities. I loved reading about these seven islands and the culture of the inhabitants there. And the characters... so strong and solid. Elei tugged my heartstrings from his first appearance and really never let me go. The fragile balance within him and the way his strength and weakness battled at the same time was brilliant and well-written. The side characters were also wonderfully written, with personality quirks that stayed true and a clarity that kept them individualized. Really well done!

I loved reading about the land of the seven islands and the culture of the inhabitants there. So much of the story depends on the reader understanding the plight of that society, and Chrystalla really knows how to use her pretty words to paint a picture. And the characters… so strong and solid. Elei tugged my heartstrings from his first appearance and really never let me go. The fragile balance within him, and the way his strength and weakness battled at the same time was brilliant and well-written. The side characters were also wonderfully developed, with personality quirks that stayed true and a clarity that kept them individualized. Really well done!

This book is absolutely a “run, buy it, read it” recommendation. Trust me, Rex Rising is worth the time. Give Elei and his cohorts a little time (and very little money – at posting, RR will only set you back $.99!) and you’ll soon find yourself happily racing down the path of Rex Rising with a desperate need to figure out what’s going on. With the promise of an upcoming sequel, I will definitely be keeping an eye on Chrystalla.
(reviewed 28 days after purchase)
jojjo reviewed on on Nov. 29, 2011

This story is about a boy named Elei running from enemies he doesn't even know he had. All he knows is that they want him badly. In a world where parasites decide who you are and the Gutturs reign, Elei tries to survive and maybe even find a place to call home.

I really enjoyed reading this book. The concept of using parasites was an original and fascinating idea. The characters were interesting and believable. The best part was how no one was "perfect". Everyone gets hurt and not every battle was won. I especially like Elei. He is a lot like a stray cat and it's funny to see him react to something like a hug.

While enjoyable, this book was hard to get into the beginning. Mainly because it was confusing. Too many things were happening (the author starts right away with the action!) and the parasites was not explained until a third of the book was done. However, once you get through it, everything becomes clear.

Pro: Action-packed, fun and believable characters, engaging and absorbing read
Con: confusing in the beginning

I would recommend this book to everyone (though you should be warned that the language is a bit crude), especially to sci-fi and fantasy fans. This book is joining my favorite's list!

Won in a giveaway in return for an honest review
(reviewed 37 days after purchase)
Scooby2 reviewed on on Nov. 28, 2011

I'm so glad I won this on Library Thing, it does not disappoint. This was a great science fiction read and very original. I instantly connected with all of the characters, Elei, Hera, Kalaes, to name a few. Their stories are believable and all connected by different parasites. I can not wait for the next chapter in their lives. I would definitely recommend to others to read.
(reviewed 36 days after purchase)
Carol Brannigan reviewed on on Nov. 18, 2011

What a great read. This quick science fiction book has everything from parasites (no- not a spoiler) to a "new" world and it also read likes a post-post apocalyptic dystopian. There is a lot of social commentary that comes through- none of it is "in your face" but it should get you thinking. The characters were flawed and believable. The pace was fast in some sections but slowed down enough in others to get some back-story.

I did catch on, about midway, to one of the twists but it didn't detract from my overall enjoyment. I will be looking forward to the next part.

Recommended for YA and adults alike.
(reviewed 26 days after purchase)
Clarksvill reviewed on on Sep. 28, 2011

Rex Rising combines the best of both SF and fantasy. Set in a thoroughly convincing, complex and troubled world, with fascinating parasites that live in strange combinations with human life, it also provides the fantasy thrill of an unsuspecting hero singled out by destiny to be pushed to his limits.

The author’s skill soon worked its magic on me and her astonishing knack for turning things up notch by notch propelled the story to a positively cinematic crescendo. The conclusion felt so satisfying that the idea of a sequel was almost an unexpected bonus – surely the perfect way to begin a series.

Elei’s character rings very true. He’s as likely to worry about where he’ll sleep at night as how he’ll stay alive long enough to do so. His need for a sense of belonging, even amongst danger and suspicion, is a key to the book’s success for me. Add to this the fact that you feel he will survive, if only on a combination of spirit and adrenaline, and you have Elei.

I can’t wait to see how (and how much) the upcoming stories shape him. He already knows by instinct what’s important in life, but clearly there’s a whole lot in store for him and although I may not be a member of the target audience, I don’t intend to miss a moment of it!
(reviewed 44 days after purchase)
james crawford reviewed on on Sep. 24, 2011

This book was very original. Chrystalla Thoma has created a fantastic new world. The idea of parasites giving people abilities (strength, site, ect) is a wonderful concept.

This was an amazing book. The non-stop action made me happy to give up a few hours of my much needed sleep just for another clue on the mystery of what happened to Elei and my the Gultur (a super race of women who rule the 7 islands of the known world) are trying to kill him. Hera is my favorite character of the book strong, beautiful, and always quick draw her gun.
I would give this book 4 out of 5 Stars. I love the uniqueness of parasites granting powers while also being a danger to the host. I could really see this book as a great TV show (there is far too much excitement to be covered in a 2 hour long movie.). I would liked to see Elei have more of a personality, you have Hara the quick to anger, gun slinging, I don’t care what you think bad ass and Kalaes the mother hen gangster with a heart of gold. Somehow Elei’s personality is overshadowed and falls short. I would recommend this book for ages 15 and up

reviewed by james crawford for
(reviewed 13 days after purchase)
Cyrus Keith reviewed on on Sep. 19, 2011

I've been a fan of Chrystala Thoma's ever since she released her novella "Dioscuri" at through MuseItUp Publishing. She paints vivid pictures of alternate realities with the stroke of a master artist. The world she creatwes in "Rex Rising" is certainly no exception. So many sci-fi authors put wings on a hionda and call it a votexbike or something, or call their rabbitlike creatures "smeerps."

Chrystala unfolds something totally different here. boats are boats. people are people. And parasites and symbiants create whole new strains of humnanity. It provides a surrealistic background for the story of Elei and his flight from unkown enemies who are sure he carries a secret that could change the world's order.

The story moves along with the skill of an expert storyteller, and the climax is a nail-biter. I had my reader turned open to this book constantly as I followed along.

Her characters are rich, real, and flawed in ways that help us to identify with them all.

Put this one on your "must-read" list, and make room for it, because once you start, you won't want to stop.
(reviewed 39 days after purchase)
Arlene Webb reviewed on on Sep. 8, 2011

An original and engaging read. A young man with the weight of the world inside him, struggling to understand and survive in a harsh, well-drawn world of cruelty and inhuman conditions, Elei will steal your heart, as will Kalaes, a guy who maintains his humanity just when you think things will never get better for Elei. The pace is relentless, the settings so fresh I know I'd stand in line to watch Rex Rising on a screen. I can't wait for book two to release, and I highly recommend this novel.
(reviewed the day of purchase)
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