An epic fantasy set in Manly will enthrall readers of any age

Ingrid J Adams’ fantasy book Descended steeps readers into Manly back in the 1990s. It’s the first book in a series of four, an epic love story that spans lifetimes and takes readers from Manly to the Arizona Desert to New York.

Character Indigo Wolfe, a Manly high school student, seems to have everything going for him, but inside, he is falling apart. He has secrets that consume him. When he meets Cordelia Carlisle, he has a sense of recognition that traverses lifetimes. He is destined to love and lose Cordelia over and over until he can get it right.

Ingrid tells Peninsula Living about her own love story. She and her husband, John, were friends at school but lost touch. They met up again years later, just before John was to move to London. He did go, but two weeks later, he was at her door, suitcase in hand. He couldn’t stand to be away from her.

Ingrid with husband John

Ingrid and John live in Manly with their four sons: Xavier, 15, Dash, 13, Remy, 11, Ted, nine, and cavoodle Rocky.

With a business degree and a masters in journalism, Ingrid worked in media until one day, aged 22, she couldn’t get out of bed. It turned out her spleen was destroying her white blood cells and platelets, and her blood wasn’t clotting. She was exhausted.

“They said ‘if you cut yourself, you’ll bleed out’,” Ingrid says. “They said it was incurable and that I’d be infertile and on steroids for the rest of my life.”

Ingrid loves all her boys

But Ingrid found a doctor, also a naturopath, who promised to cure her. In six months, her blood was back to normal, although she stresses that this approach does not work for everyone. Ingrid was inspired and returned to university to study kinesiology, nutrition and psychotherapy, and ran her own practice for a while.

Her mental health suffered during her illness, and this theme is present in Descended in Indigo.

Ingrid’s aim with the book was to normalise mental health issues for young people.

“I wanted to write someone that my children could almost aspire to, if that makes sense,” explains Ingrid. “A young man who was real, strong, sensitive, caring and brave. But absolutely flawed. Because we all have bits of us that are broken.

“Depression kills a lot of people. It’s a deadly disease,” Ingrid says. “And as much as we’ve tried to normalise mental health and depression, there’s still a stigma.”

Ingrid began writing when her youngest, Ted, was in preschool. Fast forward five or so years, and she now has her own writing study and loves having the house to herself to be creative.

Ingrid loved the 1990s, with no internet, mobile phones or distractions. A time when people talked more and could ‘get up to all sorts of mischief’ and there’d be no record of it.

“There’s no evidence,” she says. “Now everything is recorded forever on social media. So I think we got a free pass.”

Ingrid says it was a magical time and readers can listen to her Descended Spotify playlist to get into the story world.

The second book in the series, Descended: Part two, will be released on 2 May. You can catch Ingrid at the Manly Writers’ Festival, which takes place from 14 to 16 March. Visit for more information.