The author is Robin D. Owens. In her Heart series, she creates a world that is as close to my version of utopia as any author has ever come. It took me several novels to realize it, too. I've never set out to create a utopia—the idea is honestly to daunting and strangely doesn't appeal to my muse. However, if I could live in any world that has ever been created by an author, Owens's world rates in the top 3.
I love her characters and their version of magic, or Flair, that helps them connect with the environment around them. I love the idea of inanimate objects gaining self-awareness and Flair of their own through the long-term companionship of humans. And her characters do things like hold ceremonies to help heal the land and to move good energy into bad neighborhoods. They meditate. They can translocate. They have FamAnimals, which are animals that people bond for life with and who they can speak telepathically with. People have HeartMates, people who your heart and soul are meant to be with, and who you can link with and have a psychic connection with.
When I read Owens's novels, I find myself more relaxed in general. They give me a better outlook on the world and people around me and make me want to do things like walk a maze to meditate and cultivate a garden. I wonder if other people are similarly affected by Owens's work, or if her work has a hypnotic effect on only me. It's a skill that if I had it in my writing, I'd want to know, and I'd want to cultivate it. Imagine being able to make peoples lives literally better by writing fiction! There's the dream!