Blog Tour: A Song of Wraiths and Ruin

Blog Tour

A Song of Wraiths and Ruin

(A Song of Wraiths and Ruin #1)

By Roseanne A. Brown
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Release Date: June 2nd 2020

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Synopsis:
The first in an fantasy duology inspired by West African folklore in which a grieving crown princess and a desperate refugee find themselves on a collision course to murder each other despite their growing attraction.
For Malik, the Solstasia festival is a chance to escape his war-stricken home and start a new life with his sisters in the prosperous desert city of Ziran. But when a vengeful spirit abducts Malik’s younger sister, Nadia, as payment into the city, Malik strikes a fatal deal—kill Karina, Crown Princess of Ziran, for Nadia’s freedom.
But Karina has deadly aspirations of her own. Her mother, the Sultana, has been assassinated; her court threatens mutiny; and Solstasia looms like a knife over her neck. Grief-stricken, Karina decides to resurrect her mother through ancient magic . . . requiring the beating heart of a king. And she knows just how to obtain one: by offering her hand in marriage to the victor of the Solstasia competition.
When Malik rigs his way into the contest, they are set on a course to destroy each other. But as attraction flares between them and ancient evils stir, will they be able to see their tasks to the death?
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Guest Post: ASOWAR Story in GIFs

 

Malik and his sisters arriving in Ziran 

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Karina just in general

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Karina dealing with her trauma by shirking all her responsibilities and becoming a punk

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Vengeful spirits on their way to ruin Malik’s life

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Malik coming in contact with the supernatural

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The royal council when Karina’s mom dies and she becomes queen

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Karina attempting to take over for her mother as queen

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Malik coming up with ways to kill Karina

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Malik and Karina when they meet and actually don’t hate each other????

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…only to remember they each need the other dead

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Malik and Karina trying to get their lives in order

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Malik when [REDACTED]

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When you reach THAT plot twist in the book and figure out who is really pulling the strings

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Malik, Karina, and [REDACTED] during the climax

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The city of Ziran when [REDACTED]

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Readers after finishing the book

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Me feasting in the fires of my readers’ screams

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About the Author

Roseanne “Rosie” A. Brown was born in Kumasi, Ghana and immigrated to the wild jungles of central Maryland as a child. Writing was her first love, and she knew from a young age that she wanted to use the power of writing—creative and otherwise—to connect the different cultures she called home. She graduated from the University of Maryland with a Bachelor’s in Journalism and was also a teaching assistant for the school’s Jiménez-Porter Writers’ House program. Her journalistic work has been featured by Voice of America among other outlets.
On the publishing side of things, she has worked as an editorial intern at Entangled Publishing. Rosie was a 2017 Pitch Wars mentee and 2018 Pitch Wars mentor. Never content to stay in any one place for too long, Rosie currently teaches in Japan, where in her free time she can usually be found exploring the local mountains, explaining memes to her students, or thinking about Star Wars.
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Giveaway Info Below:

Prize: Win an ASOWAR bookplate, bookmark, two trading cards, and access to the exclusive short story (INT)

Starts: June 2nd 2020

Ends: June 16th 2020

Click here to enter.

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Blog Tour: Sensational

Blog Tour

Sensational

(Spectacle #2)

By Jodie Lynn Zdrok
Publisher: Tor Teen
Release Date: February 11, 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
Synopsis: 
Jodie Lynn Zdrok’s Sensational is the thrilling follow-up to Spectacle in which a killer haunts the Paris World’s Fair of 1889.

The 1889 Exposition Universelle in Paris is full of innovations, cultural displays, and inventions. Millions of visitors attend over the course of several months…so no one would notice if a few were missing, right? Maybe—but someone is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the guillotine with a display of their own: beheaded victims in some of the Exposition’s most popular exhibits.

Nathalie Baudin’s ability to see murder scenes should help, but she’s suffering the effects of her magic more than ever before. Fortunately she has other Insightfuls to team up with—if they can be trusted.

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Book One

Spectacle (#1)

By Jodie Lynn Zdrok
Publisher: Tor Teen
Release Date: February 12, 2019

Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
Synopsis: 
A YA murder mystery in which a young reporter must use her supernatural visions to help track down a killer targeting the young women of Paris.

Paris, 1887.

Sixteen-year-old Nathalie Baudin writes the daily morgue column for Le Petit Journal. Her job is to summarize each day’s new arrivals, a task she finds both fascinating and routine. That is, until the day she has a vision of the newest body, a young woman, being murdered–from the perspective of the murderer himself.

When the body of another woman is retrieved from the Seine days later, Paris begins to buzz with rumors that this victim may not be the last. Nathalie’s search for answers sends her down a long, twisty road involving her mentally ill aunt, a brilliant but deluded scientist, and eventually into the Parisian Catacombs. As the killer continues to haunt the streets of Paris, it becomes clear that Nathalie’s strange new ability may make her the only one who can discover the killer’s identity–and she’ll have to do it before she becomes a target herself.

Book Links:  photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg
About the Author

Jodie Lynn Zdrok holds two MAs in European History and an MBA. She enjoys rooting for Boston sports teams, traveling, doing races (to offset being a foodie), and posting cat photos to Instagram. She works in technology and lives in North Carolina by way of Massachusetts.

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Guest Post: “What I’ve Learned From Readers” by K.D.

Guest Post, Misc.

KD.pngMeet K.D.

K.D. lives and writes in North Carolina, but has spent time in Massachusetts, Maine, Colorado, New Hampshire, Montana, and Washington. (Common theme until NC: Snow. So, so much snow.) Mercifully short careers in food service, interactive television, corporate banking, retail management, and bariatric furniture has led to a much less short career in Higher Education. The first book in his urban fantasy series THE TAROT SEQUENCE, called THE LAST SUN, was published by Pyr in June 2018. The follow-up, THE HANGED MAN, will be published in September 2019. K.D. is represented by Sara Megibow at kt literary, and Kim Yau at Paradigm for media rights.

 

The Guest Post.

What I’ve Learned From My Readers.
Everyone tells you the same thing: DO NOT read the reviews on your novel!

It’s crazy…. Literally everyone has an opinion on it. People who’ve never written a book. People who want to write books. People who’ve written lots of books. All of them seemed to say the same thing. Ominously. Like even the act of opening a reader review will cause a pale girl with lots of dark hair to climb through my computer screen.

But I did. From the start. From the first one, to the one that was written yesterday. I’ve read every word that people have taken the time to write about THE LAST SUN.

Anyway, this is me: an urban fantasy author who writes about a reimagined Atlantis in modern day society, built loosely around the theme of the tarot deck’s major arcana, with main characters who just happen to be gay. My novels center around a buddy-duo named Rune and Brand, and their adventures in the sprawling world of New Atlantis. I’m hoping to turn this into a nine novel series – 3 trilogies, actually. The overall series is called the Tarot Sequence, the first novel is THE LAST SUN, and the follow-up, to be published in December 2019, is THE HANGED MAN.

I didn’t know what to expect when the first novel came out. I’m an older writer – old enough, at least, to remember a world that looked a lot different from the one today with regards to casually including gay characters in your story. I didn’t know if my series would be pigeon-holed as simply “Gay Fiction” or if by marketing it as Sci-Fi I’d be enduring the wrath of unnamed straight readers who picked up the book assuming Rune was a red-blooded straight male who would obviously never fall in love with someone named Addam.

The truth? Most people were awesome. My readers rock this universe. They are kind and effusive. They share artwork and song recommendations. 95% of my reviews are overwhelmingly positive. I worked my ass off writing HANGED MAN, largely because these people are so exceptionally great. I owe them a great follow-up.

But for a second….let’s talk about the 5% of reviews that weren’t overwhelmingly positive. I read those too. This is a list of what I learned about my readers (my audience); my writing; and the thickness of my skin.

  • Oh wow did I mess up my portrayal of female characters. Looking back, I thought I was Mr. Diversity because I had an urban fantasy with characters who just happened to be gay men! And while, sure, I think there’s a market for that, I also learned that it’s not enough. It’s no excuse to omit vibrant, strong, interesting, powerful female characters. I literally had none. NONE. Those that I did include were either villains or heavily-flawed people. I am deeply ashamed of this, and worked hard to show a better balance in HANGED MAN. This is, by far, one of the most powerful things I learned from my audience. I can’t wait for people to meet Anna and Lady Death, in particular. And Aunt Diana returns for at least one scene where she kind of beautifully puts Rune in his place.
  • And along those same lines? My character were overwhelmingly white. Part of that originally had to do with my own sensitivity, and not wanting to appropriate other cultures. But I’ve learned that’s no excuse not to include people of color in my story. So I start correcting that in HANGED MAN, and will correct it even more in Novel #3. Lady Death, who makes her first appearance in HANGED MAN, is a strong black woman who will get along well with Rune, and play a huge part in Novel #3. And the Dawncreeks are a family with a bloodline that traces back to the Wampanoag (not unlike Rune himself)—an American Indian tribe I’ve mentioned before in the context of their importance in East Coast history. And the Arcana—the rulers of New Atlantis –are an extremely multicultural bunch. Since they’ve had business interests in every part of the human world, it wouldn’t make sense to have them be anything but diverse.
  • I also learned it’s OK not to have a knock-down, dragged-out action sequence every other chapter. Now this is a much more subtle learning. I think genre novels always have a fair balance of action and narrative; but “action” doesn’t always have to mean a fight sequence. Early in HANGED MAN, there’s a long sequence that takes place in a red light district called the Green Docks, which is comprised of long-lost ghost ships. I learned that I didn’t need to use this as a backdrop for a fight, because the backdrop itself was the action. It was spooky and haunted, and Rune, Brand, and Addam had to be on their toes the entire time they explored it to gather information on a runaway named Layne. I didn’t necessarily need to have more than that. Atmosphere is action.
  • And sure, in reading all of the first novel reviews, I got some homophobia. Shockingly little, however. So little that I actually was able to laugh most of it off. There was one person who gave me a low-star review, but also published their Kindle notes. And in their Kindle notes, I saw the point where their enjoyment of the story turned into a rejection of the gay theme. (The focus of the story isn’t on a gay character; the main character just happens to be gay, and a potential love interest that appears halfway into the story is, indeed, a man.) The reviewer made a Kindle note to the affect: “Oh great, this just turned into another homoerotic bottom boy novel. What a waste.” And most recently, a reader made comments about my pandering to the diversity crowd by having a character who wasn’t a “boring straight white male.” I should note that in both cases, I anonymously reprinted the comments on Twitter with this caption: MORE TO COME!
  • …..BUUUUT I learned, hypothetically, that the person who left that borderline homophobic comment may see that I quoted him or her on Twitter, because the next thing I knew that last 3-star review became a 2-star review, and was immediately followed by another 2-star review by a new reviewer who just happened to have reviewed no novel except for LAST SUN. So…maybe I learned not to engage? We’ll see if that sticks.

OK! Now that I’ve blown this blog entry’s word count request out of the water, I’ll stop here. Lord knows there are plenty of other lessons I’ve learned, but these are the Big Ones. These are the lessons that heavily impacted how I wrote & structured THE HANGED MAN.

Thank you for the opportunity to write this, Rae! I’ve been wanting to put this into words for a while!

 

Thank you K.D. for sharing!

THE HANG MAN comes out in December of this year!

Blog Tour: ALARUM

Blog Tour

ALARUM

By Talis Jones

Release Date: October 30, 2018
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Western
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Synopsis: 
I fled as they destroyed my home.
I watched as they murdered my family.
I stood silent as they stole my name and threw my life in chains.
I stare coldly at my fading reflection with only one question to ask:
Them or Me?Set in a future where the United States has fallen, a girl is ripped from her home as a child and forced to endure the harshness around her or else surrender to the dust of bones she treads on. Her life becomes simple: kill or be killed. What she didn’t count on was the heavy cost this world would drain from her soul. When she crosses paths with a curious stranger who offers to show her a place without a map, they head across the crumbling land in search of the fabled Sanctuary. Neither enemies nor elements that rip her hair and claw at her heels can stand in the way of her will to survive.They say demons lurk in the shadows, but here they strut boldly under the angry sun.

Book 2

Solus

Release Date: June 25, 2019

Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, WesternSynopsis:

Born in an experimental lab before two outlaws stole him away, Bones has been planted into the vengeful earth growing strong with a gun in each hand. Given freedom by a group called Sanctuary he’s trained his powers carefully until one day they let him leave. Until one day he witnesses something that will cause his loyalty to waver. Until one day it’s his own name they vow to write with blood.

As the life he thought he knew threatens to crumble beneath his feet he takes to the road determined to explore with no tether but his plans quickly go awry when old adversaries capture him to pay for the sins of his saviors. Whether there remains any place in this harsh land that might dare call itself Home, he fights each challenger with a gun aimed at their chest and a laugh in his step.

When the world wants you dead, dare to smile.

 

Teasers

 

About the Author

Talis Jones has always been an avid reader and any good story filled with fantasy and adventure is bound to be on her shelf. Graduated Suma Cum Laude with a degree in Theatre she has explored both stage and film, now finding herself drawn towards the literary world as a new venue for storytelling. Inspired by her mixed heritage as a Mexican-Englishwoman raised in the wilds of America, she rallies for diverse characters and seeks to contribute with her own writing.
Jesus follower, dog lover, chocolate fanatic, and music enthusiast, Talis currently resides in North Carolina where she has found a home for now that provides all of those favorite things.
Social Media Links:
Alarum Blog Tour Giveaway.jpgGiveaway info below!
One winner will receive:
  • 1 signed paperback of ALARUM
  • 1 shotgun shell necklace
  • 4 signed bookmarks.
Enter here.
Open to U.S. residents only.
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Release Blitz: The Blood Prince

Blog Blitz

Release Day Blitz:

The Blood Prince (Sovereign Book III) by Josie Jaffrey

The price of freedom is always paid in blood.

The sovereigns of the Silver have awakened, but the Queen is a fractured shell of the woman Cam remembers. He hopes to put her back together by finding her son, the missing prince. At least, that’s what he tells his friends when he leaves for the Red.

Back in the Blue, Julia’s old tormentor Rufus is hounding her at every turn. She’s sick of feeling powerless, but she has a plan that will bring the Nobles to their knees.
All she needs is blood.

The Blood Prince is the final book in Josie Jaffrey’s Sovereign trilogy, set in a dystopian Europe where vampiric Nobles control the last remnants of the human race.

Publisher: Self-published
Author: Josie Jaffrey
Cover Art: Martin Beckett Art
Page Count: 285
Word Count: 101,000
ASIN (Amazon): B07M82KNW6
ISBN (E-book): 9780463877159
ISBN (Print): 9781792012860
Release Date: 20 February 2019
Rating: Young Adult

Excerpt

Julia sipped at her tea, relishing the warmth as it spread into her chest.
‘I just thought he was going to change things,’ she said. ‘I thought the Queen was supposed to come back, wake up the King and bring us a cure for the contamination.’


‘But you know what the contamination really is now. We both know what it really is.’


The Weeper vaccine. The Silver cure.


Julia had told Livia the truth the moment she’d returned from the Red.
‘I know,’ said Julia, ‘but still, shouldn’t something have changed? All the lives lost and battles fought and still things are happening exactly as they used to. The Candidates are still being cast, the Attendants are still bleeding, the Servers are still slaving, and above it all the Nobles are still taking exactly what they want from us. How is that fair?’


Livia settled back in her seat.
‘Well, now, that depends on what you’re asking. If you’re asking how it’s fair that they’ve used us for this long, then the answer is it’s not. It’s never been fair, and there’s no wiping that blame away from them. But if you’re asking how it’s fair that they’re still allowed to use us when you know very well what has the power to make them stop… Well, that’s a different question, isn’t it?’
Julia put her tea aside, no longer thirsty.


‘What are you saying?’ she said.


‘You know what’s in the blood of them o
utside the Blue. The way I see it, you’ve got a choice: either you accept things as they are, or you do something about it.’
Julia couldn’t believe what she was hearing. Yes, she’d resolved to change the way that things were in the Blue, and yes, the thing that had motivated her was the knowledge that the contamination could be used as a weapon against the Nobles, but she hadn’t quite put the two together into a course of action. The thought of actually using that weapon felt too extreme to contemplate.


But it was the logical end point, one Julia knew she’d have to accept.

 

 

Blog Tour: Kindred

Blog Tour

kindred ebook cover.jpgKindred (The Akasha Series #2)
by Indie Gantz
Genre: YA Scifi Fantasy
Release Date: February 2019

Summary:

In Kindred we find the Damuzi twins settling into their new home with Kori Lark’s family. Desperate to keep the dangerous truth of their identity a secret, Charlie and Tirigan educate themselves on everything that was kept from them, while delving deeper into their mother’s past.

In the future, Tirigan is dealing with the complicated emotions that overwhelm him after the events of Passage. In an attempt to control the situation, Tirigan turns inward and cuts himself off from those who need him most.

By the time Charlie and Tirigan’s timeline’s merge, a burning mystery is solved, and more than one relationship begins to unravel.

Friendship. Trust. Dependency. Lies.

The Damuzi twin’s story continues.

Add to Goodreads

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Previous book in the Series

passage ebook cover.jpgPassage (The Akasha Series #1)by Indie Gantz
Genre: YA Scifi Fantasy
Release Date: March 2018

Summary:

Uncover a Lifetime of Lies in this Fantasy Adventure!

On day one, Charlie Damuzi and her mute twin brother Tirigan are blissfully unaware of the dangerous world they live in. They may be aliens living on Earth after the extinction of humans, but to Charlie, life is pretty mundane.

On day two, the Damuzi family is ripped apart by a family secret that forces the twins to flee the only home they’ve ever known.

Determined to find a way to reunite their family, Charlie and Tirigan travel to uncharted territory in search of their salvation.

But that’s just Charlie’s side of the story.

In the future, forty days from when we first meet the Damuzi twins, Tirigan is on the move. His destination is unknown, as are the people he’s surrounded himself with, but his mission is still the same. Keep his sister safe and reunite their family.

However, as Tirigan attempts to navigate the complex bonds he’s formed with his companions, he’s forced to confront the one thing in life he has yet to fully understand.

Himself.

Family. Deception. Power. Destruction.

It all begins on day one.

Add to Goodreads

 

Guest Post.

Finding the right title for your novel and series.

So, you’ve got this idea. You’re terrified, because it feels big and real. It feels like you’re birthing something incredibly unique, and nothing in this world could stop it from happening. So, you sit down and you start to write. You create your characters and you chart your plot and timelines. Your characters surprise you with twists, and the plot transforms brilliantly. Your antagonists evolve into fully-formed people that force you to feel compassion for them, and your protagonists see darkness you never knew was inside of them. You’re doing it. You’re writing a brand new series that you pray people will devour.

But then comes the intimidating realization that you have to market the series. You have to create a brand. How do you do that?

There’s a lot that goes into marketing a new series, but the very first thing you have to do? Create a eye-catching title, for both your series and each individual novel. Finding this isn’t always easy. You can scour your plot for interesting words or overarching themes. You could pull a Rowling and name the series after your main character. You could even study different languages and find a word or phrase that fits your narrative.
That last one is how I chose my series title.

My series is genre-bending, combining Science Fiction and Fantasy elements. Elements being literal, as one of the species in my series has the power to manipulate the four elements. However, the Sci-Fi aspect of my series involves an alien species based on Sumerian history and myths. In combination, these two species create a fifth element. Indian Cosmologist use the word ‘Akasha’ to describe “space” or “the aether,” and Wiccans have adopted this terminology to represent the fifth element. Akasha, or The Spirit Element, is the element from which all creation came. That was perfect for my series, The Akasha Series, for reasons you’ll have to read to find out.

As for the titles of each individual novel, typically the titles are short and engaging. If you’re tacting on your series name after each novel title, you don’t want the individual novel titles to be super long. Each novel title should be just as representative of the novel’s content as the series title is of the whole series. Choose action words, or titles that evoke the kind of emotion readers will find within the novel.

I’ve chosen one word titles for each of the novels in my series. The first book is titled Passage, because the bulk of the novel has the protagonists both literally and figuratively passing through to a new world. The second book in the series is titled Kindred, because it focuses on finding and forming strong family ties. The alternate meaning for the word, ‘similar in kind,’ is also appropriate, as readers are made more aware of the literary mirrors put in place in the second novel. These mirrors are meant to enrich both the character’s relationships and the reader’s relationship with each character.

Choosing a title is a very personal and, at times, frustrating journey, but no matter what complications you encounter on your title choosing adventure, don’t settle. Choose a title that’s bold and full of energy, but make sure it speaks to you.

 

indie gantzAbout the Author
Indie Gantz grew up in Northern Virginia and received her Psychology degree at George Mason University. Despite her passion and curiosity for the human mind, Indie left her chosen field of study to finally give voice to the many imagined minds she has created.
Indie lives with her family in North Carolina. She spends her days drinking tea and clacking keys.

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