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I Belong

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Night Study by Maria V. Snyder

January 18th, 2016 Bridget Posted in Blog Tour 69 Comments »

mariaWelcome to the start of the blog tour for Night Study by Maria V. Snyder. I am a HUGE fan of the Study Series and being able to interview one of my all time favorite book boys is amazing. Night Study is the 5th novel in the series and it will be releasing on January 26, 2016! If you haven’t started reading this epic high fantasy you really should start now. You can check out my review for Poison Study here and my review for the rest of the series should be posting soon!

Down below you will get to see my interview with Valek and there is also a fantastic giveaway for 10 finished copies of Night Study! There will be both U.S. and International winners!

About Maria:

Maria V. Snyder changed from being a meteorologist to a novelist in 1995, when she began writing to keep her sanity while raising two children. Since then, she has published numerous freelance articles in magazines and newspapers, and teaches fiction-writing classes at the local college and area libraries. The classes give her the wonderful opportunity to encourage fellow writers, and to keep improving her craft.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Maria always had a fascination with big storms. Dreaming of chasing tornados, Maria earned a bachelors of science degree in meteorology at Penn State University. But she discovered, much to her chagrin, that forecasting the weather wasn’t one of her skills. In order to chase tornados you had to predict where they might form. Creating fantasy worlds where she has complete control of the weather was more agreeable to her.

Maria’s research on food-tasting methods with an expert chocolate taster, her husband, turned out to be a delicious bonus while writing Poison Study.

Maria has a brown belt in Isshinryu Karate, and enjoys playing volleyball and the cello. Traveling in general and via cruise ship in particular are her biggest distractions from writing. Maria has traveled to Belize, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and through the Panama Canal.

Maria lives with her husband, son, daughter and yellow lab, Hazelnut, in Pennsylvania where she is at work on more LUNA novels. She is also pursuing a master’s degree in writing popular fiction from Seton Hill University.

Readers are welcome to contact Maria at the following email address: moc.redynsvairamnull@airam.

You can visit Maria around the web here: Website | Blog | Facebook

Want to read more from Maria V. Snyder?

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Night Study Tour Banner

Interview with Valek

Dark Faerie Tales: First off, I just have to say that interviewing you is a dream come true, so thank you so much for agreeing to answer a few questions for us! To start things off, will you introduce yourself so anyone that is crazy enough to have not read your story yet will know a little bit more about you?

Valek: Thank you for inviting me to your blog. I’m Valek, the Commander of Ixia’s chief of security and in charge of the vast intelligence network throughout Ixia and Sitia.  But don’t tell Yelena, my heart mate the part about Sitia. As Liaison between Ixia and Sitia she’s been trying to get me to stop spying on our neighbors to the south.  In other words, to play nice.  As a trained assassin and protector of Ixia, I do not play nice.

DFT: Your relationship with the Commander is very unique, you have been his loyal servant for years and you have become good friends. But some recent events have come to light that may jeopardize your relationship with him. If things don’t turn out well for you and the Commander, how are you going to handle that?

Valek: Our relationship has had its ups and downs over the 24 years I’ve known the Commander. It has been difficult, but I hope to restore our relationship. If that doesn’t happen, then I will find another position in Sitia or retire.  Personal bodyguard for the Liaison has a nice ring to it don’t you think?

DFT: You are a trained assassin and over the years you have killed many people! Emotionally, who was your hardest kill? Which one was the most satisfying?

Valek: The corrupt King of Ixia was the most satisfying – he needed to die.  When I kill someone, emotions are not part of the equation – my opponent either deserves to die or he does not and I let him live. If the Commander had ordered me to execute Yelena, I would have obeyed, but that would have been the purest form of torture for me and I would have taken my life soon after I took hers.

DFT: Ari and Janco are some of my favorite characters in the books. They are quite the dynamic duo and over the years you have become good friends. What do you think is the best part about each guy individually, and what is the best thing about them when they work together?

Valek: Ari is very protective and dependable and will risk his life for another without hesitation.  His steady presence provides a nice counterbalance to Janco’s wild personality swings.  However, Janco is also dependable and has never let me down. Together they’re an efficient and effective team and I know when I ask them to do something, it will be done.

DFT: Now I am going to ask you a few questions about Yelena! I know you have been together a long time now, but when was the first moment you found yourself falling in love with her?

Valek: She intrigued me from the very beginning, and the more I interacted with her the more I was drawn to her.  I’d have to say when I learned that she’d been chased through the castle by Brazell’s goons, a strong protective urge shot through me.  That might have been the first inclination that I was falling for her.

DFT: Yelena and you have a very interesting story and you have now been together for many years. We as the readers have been with you for much of your journey together and we all have our favorite Valek/Yelena moments, but what is your favorite memory with Yelena?

Valek: My favorite memories with her are when we’re alone in our cottage, spending time together without any interruptions or problems to deal with.

DFT: Yelena is an amazing woman and there are so many things I love about her! What is your favorite physical attribute of hers and what do you think is her best quality?

Valek: I love that she’s a fighter. By that I mean, that she fights for what she believes in and fights for others.  That she won’t give up or give in to self-pity or depression.  As for her physical attribute, I love everything about her and couldn’t pick one.

 (MAJOR SPOILER FOR ANYONE THAT HAS NOT READ SHADOW STUDY)

DFT: At the end of Shadow Study it was revealed that you are going to be a father! How do you feel about that?

Valek:  Well, it’s not confirmed at this point.  She’s been under a great deal of stress lately. However, should it occur, I’d be thrilled beyond measure.

DFT: Since none of us have ever had the pleasure of actually meeting you in person, can you possibly show us a picture of what you look like?

Valek: I could, but then I’d have to kill you  ;)  Just kidding.  I included a drawing that matches rather well.

Valek

(Okay everyone take a moment to drool over how gorgeous this man is)

DFT: Lucky for us your story isn’t quite over yet, but the end of Night Study left us dying to read more! Can you give us any hints as to what we can expect from the next chapter in your story?

Valek:  Well, the Cartel must be dealt with and Owen has to die and we have to do this with very few resources at hand.  If you wish to wager a few coins, I’d suggest you not bet on us.

Quick Fire Questions:

Favorite Weapon? A knife of course!

Favorite food? Opal’s mother’s lemon pie.

Favorite book? The Art of the Lie, by Hedda Bhavsar.

Favorite poison to use? My love.

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Tour Schedule

Week One:

1/18/2016– Dark Faerie Tales – Interview

1/19/2016– The Bibliophile Chronicles – Review

1/20/2016– Two Chicks on Books – Guest Post

1/21/2016– The Moonlight Library – Review

1/22/2016– Read Now Sleep Later – Interview

Week Two:

1/25/2016– Seeing Double In Neverland – Review

1/26/2016– Magical Urban Fantasy Reads – Excerpt

1/27/2016– a GREAT read – Review

1/28/2016– Fiktshun – Interview

1/29/2016– Mundie Moms – Review

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contest

This giveaway is provided by Maria V Snyder & Rockstar Book Tours!

Six lucky winners will receive a finished copy of Night Study, US Only.

Four lucky winners will receive a finished copy of Night Study, International.

Night Study

Available January 26, 2016 by MIRA Ink

About this Book:

Once, only her own life hung in the balance…

When Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. She survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia.

Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands—and protect her relationship with Valek.

Suddenly, though, dissent is rising. And Valek’s job—and his life—are in danger.

As Yelena tries to uncover her enemies, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked.And now she must find a way to keep not only herself but all that she holds dear alive.

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GIVEAWAY GUIDELINES:

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: Sword and Verse by Kathy MacMillan

January 15th, 2016 Bridget Posted in Blog Tour 2 Comments »

sword and verse authorToday we are taking part in the Sword and Verse by Kathy MacMillan blog tour! Sword and Verse is a gorgeous high fantasy young adult story. It is full of steamy romance, amazing action, and an intriguing plot! Our full review of the book will be posted on the blog soon, but trust me if you are a fantasy fan you should definitely pick this one up!

For my post today, I got to interview the swoon worthy Prince Mati! There is also a great giveaway at the end of post for 5 finished copies of Sword and Verse!!!

About Kathy:

Kathy MacMillan is a writer, American Sign Language interpreter, consultant, librarian, signing storyteller, and avowed Hufflepuff.  Her debut young adult novel, Sword and Verse, explores questions of power and prejudice in an epic fantasy setting, and has been called “fascinating and unique” by National Book Award finalist Franny Billingsley.  Kathy is the founder of The Sweet Sixteens (www.thesweet16s.com) debut group of 2016 middle grade and young adult authors, and serves as the Published and Listed Member Coordinator for the Maryland/Delaware/West Virginia Region of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.  She is also the author of eight resource books for educators, librarians, and parents, including Little Hands and Big Hands: Children and Adults Signing Together (Huron Street Press, 2013). She lives near Baltimore, MD with her husband, son, and a cat named Pancake.

Find Kathy around the web here: Website | TwitterFacebook | Pinterest

Want to read more from Kathy MacMillan?

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Sword And Verse

Interview with Prince Mati

Dark Faerie Tales: Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to sit down and talk to us today! Can you start by introducing yourself and telling us something unique about you?

Prince Mati: Hello! I am happy to be here.  Something unique about me is that I have an unnatural fondness for honey cake.

DFT: You are the Crown Prince of Qilara and I imagine being a prince isn’t always the easiest or greatest thing to be, but what is the best perk about being a prince?

Prince Mati: Oh, I’d say it has its share of perks.  I live in the palace and I get to learn the highest form of writing to communicate with the gods.  I’d sound like the worse kind of ingrate if I complained, wouldn’t I?

DFT: There are many laws and traditions in your kingdom that you don’t agree with like the fact that only the royals are allowed to read and write. If you could without any repercussions change one thing about your country what would it be and why?

Prince Mati: I would free the Arnath slaves, but it would be foolish to think that could be done without repercussions, unfortunately.

DFT: Growing up you had a tutor named Tyasha who was executed for committing treason. You two were pretty close considering she spent so much time teaching you. How did her execution affect you?

Prince Mati: Tyasha was the closest thing to a sister I ever had.  When she chose to ally herself with the Resistance, when she chose to die for their cause when she could have saved herself, well, let’s just say that made me think differently about a lot of things that I had been taking for granted.

DFT: Your relationship with your father is pretty rocky at times, but do you have any good memories of time spent with your father?

Prince Mati: The best times with my father were always when we were out hunting – maybe because we didn’t actually have to talk to each other, and since we couldn’t agree on anything, talking was always dangerous.

DFT: Now we have to talk about Raisa since she is pretty amazing. What was your initial impression of Raisa when you first met her?

Prince Mati: I remember that she was terrified – the guards had just caught her taking a scroll in the Library of the Gods – but there was something so determined about her.  She looked at me like I was the one who had done something wrong by doubting her innocence.

DFT: Was there a particular moment when you realized that you were falling in love with Raisa or was it a more gradual thing?

Prince Mati: It was gradual, only because I tried to deny it for so long.  The Adytum, where we study, is like its own little world.  Every day I would go there and have this reprieve from everything else, and just be with Raisa and Laiyonea, and I didn’t have to pretend to be hard or cunning or ambitious.  I could make stupid jokes and they would laugh.  I could say what I really thought about the High Priest without anyone glaring at me.  The Adytum was the place where I could be myself, and Raisa actually liked that version of me.  It would have been harder, in the end, to keep denying what I felt for her.

DFT: Throughout your story you and Raisa share some pretty steamy moments, but you also have a lot of fun together. Out of all the time you have spent together so far what is your favorite memory with Raisa?

Prince Mati: No question: it was visiting the Adytum with her after the floods, and finally getting to see her embrace her freedom.

DFT: Sadly your story is a standalone but since you have spent so much time with your author Kathy I was wondering if maybe you could give us an idea as to what she might be working on currently?

Prince Mati: Actually, the story isn’t over.  There are still plenty of challenges ahead for our new Council, and Kathy is exploring them in an as-yet-untitled sequel to Sword and Verse.  I’m told that it is mostly about Soraya and that I will spend a great deal of time in it feeling guilty for the consequences of my past actions.

DFT: Woohoo!!! Can’t wait to read more!!!

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Tour Schedule

Week One:

1/11/2016- Two Chicks on Books – Interview

1/12/2016- A Reader Under The Sea – Review

1/13/2016- Tales of Ravenous Reader – Guest Post

1/14/2016- Nerdophiles – Review

1/15/2016- Dark Faerie Tales  Interview

Week Two:

1/18/2016- Fiktshun – Review

1/19/2016- Once Upon a Twilight – Guest Post

1/20/2016- PLEASE FEED THE BOOKWORM – Review

1/21/2016- The Eater of Books! – Interview

1/22/2016- Good Choice Reading – Review

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contest

This contest is provided by Kathy MacMillan and Rockstar Book Tours!

5 lucky winners will each receive a finished copy of Sword and Verse
(US only)

Sword and Verse Cover

Available January 19, 2016 by HarperTeen

About this Book:

Raisa was just a child when she was sold to work as a slave in the kingdom of Qilara. Despite her young age, her father was teaching her to read and write, grooming her to take his place as a Learned One. In Qilara, the Arnathim, like Raisa, are the lowest class, and literacy is a capital offense. What’s more, only the king, prince, tutor, and tutor-in-training are allowed to learn the very highest order language, the language of the gods. So when the tutor-in-training is executed for teaching slaves this sacred language, and Raisa is selected to replace her, Raisa knows any slipup on her part could mean death.

Keeping her secret is hard enough, but the romance that’s been growing between her and Prince Mati isn’t helping matters. Then Raisa is approached by the Resistance—an underground army of slave rebels—to help liberate Arnath slaves. She wants to free her people, but that would mean aiding a war against Mati. As Raisa struggles with what to do, she discovers a secret that the Qilarites have been hiding for centuries—one that, if uncovered, could bring the kingdom to its knees.

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Guest Post & Giveaway: Scarred by Erica Hayes

January 15th, 2016 Kristie Posted in Blog Tour 7 Comments »

Erica HayesToday we have the fabulous author Erica Hayes! She is here to discuss that age old issue… love triangles or no love triangles especially when it comes to urban fantasy. I honestly have no problem with love triangles, I think it adds more drama and tension. Scarred, is the sequel to Erica’s superhero urban fantasy series is out today from HarperImpulse. It is the second novel in the Sapphire City series following Scorched.

Don’t forget to enter to win Scorched & Scarred at the end of this post!

About Erica:

Erica Hayes was a law student, an air force officer, an editorial assistant and a musician, before finally landing her dream job: fantasy and romance writer. She writes dark paranormal and urban fantasy romance, and her books feature tough, smart heroines and colourful heroes with dark secrets. She hails from Australia, where she drifts from city to city, leaving a trail of chaos behind her. Currently, she’s terrorizing the wilds of Northumberland.

You can visit Erica around the web here: Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook

Want to read more from Erica Hayes?

Shadowfae Shadowglass Poison Kissed Blood Cursed Cherry Kisses Demon ChainedRevelation RedemptionScorched ScarredHellcursed (Shadowfae, #0.5)Cherry KissesHunter's BloodHunter's HeartUnforgiven: A Tale of the P...Dragonfly

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Hi, I’m Erica, and I write the Sapphire City series, about a superheroine who fights crime. Thanks for having me on DFT today!

Like a lot of urban series, my Sapphire City books SCORCHED and SCARRED include these two things: 1) a tough female action hero (yay!); and b) a love triangle.

But why? Why is ‘tough chick with problematic love life’ such a persistent trope in UF? Why must our heroines always have relationship issues, anyway? A strong woman with agency doesn’t need a man to be awesome, right? Why can’t she just kick butt and be done?

Well, y’know. Because we all love supernatural smexxin’ and hot characters making out. Who doesn’t? But that’s not all.

Thing is, if a story’s all action and no emotion, it gets monotonous. The heroine becomes one dimensional and predictable if she has no emotional arc. Romantic problems are emotional problems – and isn’t that what we really want to read about? Not just fights and chases, but the conflicting emotions and moral ambiguities of a woman trying to make it in a tough fantasy world?

My heroine Verity Fortune has oodles of moral and emotional conflict. She’s a telekinetic crimefighter who’s made terrible mistakes that once caused a lot of death and destruction. She wants to be a ‘good guy’, but her failures mean she’s far from convinced she’s cut out to be a hero. What does it even mean to be ‘good’, when good people suffer and die at the hands of unscrupulous villains – and what’s the point in holding the moral high ground if all it means is that you lose the war?

Verity’s sidekick – a mysterious masked illusionist called Glimmer, with a shadowy past and a heart of gold (or does he?) – believes that honour and doing the right thing are more important than victory. He always knows exactly what to do in a moral crisis, and supports her unconditionally, even when she screws up in the worst possible ways. Verity admires Glimmer deeply, but despairs: how can she ever live up to his standard, when she’s so flawed and confused and he’s so certain?

ScorchedScarred sm

Her nemesis, on the other hand – a ruthless villain called Razorfire with an unshakeable superiority complex and twisted ideas about romance – thinks Glimmer is a fool to accept Verity’s shortcomings. Unconditional love is for puppies. If she wants Razorfire’s esteem, she’d better deserve it – and for him, the worst sin of all is to deny your own power and fail to be yourself. Isn’t happiness and fulfilment more important than what the world thinks of you?

Only problem is, Verity’s pretty sure that being herself involves rage, destruction and death. If she wants to be ‘good’, she’ll have to change to suit the world – which according to Razorfire means betraying yourself and everything you stand for. And she can’t deny that when she does things his way – when she follows her heart and damns the consequences – it makes her happy.

So while Verity is torn between two very different romances, it means she’s torn between two mutually exclusive ways of life. An idealistic quest for heroism and goodness that she’ll probably never achieve – versus the creeping certainty that she’s no one’s idea of a hero, and that after all the fighting’s done and the dust settles, she and her archvillain deserve each other.

Which is why we love romance and love triangles in urban fantasy! It’s just another way of testing our heroine to the limit. Butt-kicking is what she eats for breakfast, after all. Why make it too easy for her?

So who’s your favourite UF love triangle – or quadrangle, or pentagon? The early Anita Blake books had wonderful romantic and moral conflict. Likewise Sookie Stackhouse.

Or do you prefer it when the heroine must fight to make it with just one special guy?

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contest

This contest is provided by Erica Hayes!

One lucky winner will win the Sapphire City series (Scorched & Scarred) in epub format!

Scarred sm

Available January 15, 2016 from HarperImpulse

About this Book:

Superpowers don’t make you a hero.

Verity Fortune’s crime-fighting days are over. In exile, defeated by her smug supervillain nemesis, her shady past exposed—even her own superpowered family condemn her as a traitor. Whatever it takes, Verity’s determined to prove she can still be a force for good.

Now, Sapphire City faces a new threat. A delinquent duo with extraordinary powers and a terrifying talent for destruction. Outmatched and on the run, her telekinetic powers faltering, Verity can’t defeat this menace alone—but who can she trust, when the only person who believes in her is her arch-enemy?

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Blog Tour: The Radiant Road by Katherine Catmull

January 14th, 2016 Kristie Posted in Blog Tour Comments Off on Blog Tour: The Radiant Road by Katherine Catmull

Katherine CatmullPlease welcome author Katherine Catmull! Her new novel, The Radiant Road, will be released next week on January 19, 2016 from Dutton Books for Young Readers/Penguin. Katherine is here today to discuss the inspirational soundtrack behind The Radiant Road. Check out Kaitlin’s rave review HERE.

About Katherine:

I’m a writer and actor in Austin, TX. My next book,  a YA fantasy called The Radiant Road (Dutton Young Readers/Penguin), comes out in January 2016.

My first book, Summer and Bird (also Dutton Young Readers), was named one of Booklist’s 2012 Top Ten First Novels for Youth and was both an IndieBound New Voices Pick and an Amazon Editors’ Pick for fall 2012. It’s out in paperback as well.

I am also one of four spooky-storymakers at the Cabinet of Curiosities website. Last year Greenwillow/HarperCollins published a collection of those stories, which was named one of the New York Public Library’s Best Books of 2014.

I often act on stage in various Austin venues, especially Hyde Park Theatre. And I do voice work for games like DC Universe Online (Oracle) and Wizard 101 (Myrella Windspar).

I have written several short plays (you can read one in New Monologues for Women by Women, Vol II), nine of which have been produced either in ScriptWork’s Out of Ink festival or HPT’s FronteraFest. I’ve also collaborated on a couple of longer ones.

I sometimes write about arts for the Austin Chronicle, and I usually blog for the Fusebox Festival, an international hybrid arts festival held in Austin every spring.

I was born in Salt Lake City and lived in Atlanta, Tampa, and Houston as a kid. I have a BA in English Literature from Reed College in Portland, OR, and an MA in lit from The University of Texas at Austin.

You can visit Katherine around the web here:

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook Tumblr

Want to read more from Katherine Catmull?

Summer and BirdThe Radiant Road

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RadiantRoad-BlogTour-v1

Book Soundtrack

All these are songs I listened to while I was writing The Radiant Road, though there were many different reasons behind the listenings.

While I was writing The Radiant Road I had a playlist called “The Isle is Full of Noises.” That’s a line from Shakespeare describing a magical island much like one that appears in the book. The playlist had four whole albums on it, and I used to listen to it on shuffle to find the weird magic I needed for some parts of the book. In quite different ways, all those albums have a similarly eerie quality. So these first four are one song from each of those four albums:

1. “Mysterious Island,” from the album Planet Drum

The drumming on this makes me float.

2. “O Maria, Stella Maris,” Trio Medieval from the album Stella Maris.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKn8GNQVx4Y

The way one of them holds the tonic! They sound like exquisitely beautiful aliens.

3. “Howl,” Jónsi & Alex from the album Riceboy Sleeps.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yv_cR7fPUnk

What are those animals at the end??

4. Allemande from Partita for 8 Voices by Caroline Shaw, performed by Roomful of Teeth.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mukrVsKqTs

Listen for at least 30 or 40 seconds, and get ready to have the top of your head blown off.

 

These next eight, #5 – #12, just put me in the right place to feel out Clare, my main character, and what she was going through.

5. “Sari,” Nelli McKay: Great girl-power —or lack of power—song. Her sly mockery of women’s tendency to apologize is useful for both Clare and me.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJZY-Czcp2E

6. “Black Horse & the Cherry Tree,” KT Tunstall. Finding her beast is a critical—and terrifying—part of Clare’s journey, and I think the black horse must be KT Tunstall’s beast. When your beast reaches out a hand to you, you can go to it or not—but watch out, because your heart may go without you.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQmDUEv939A

7. “Ditch Effort,” Tom Catmull. My brother’s a singer/songwriter in Missoula. This is one my favorites of his, and it puts me back in that shaky, thrilling, uncertain place of new love, like Clare’s feelings for Finn. “I’m ready to leave, if you want me to!”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uml8ht_C7Ao&list=PL17uq5Sd68V79NX4u3rWYIOxa7Fg2kP0U&index=49

8. “Passionate Kisses,” Lucinda Williams. A great song about wanting the art and the love, both, no compromise—and why should there be?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXDntCyj7xs

9. “Suzanne,” Leonard Cohen: This song brings my own teenage years back to me vividly, which helped while I was writing Clare.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZX0CfFdk-jw&list=RDZX0CfFdk-jw

10.Sugar Mountain,” Neil Young. A song about teetering between childhood and adulthood, as all teenagers are. When you get as old as I am, it’s easy to forget the poignant, painful, distant-but-close relationship teenagers have with childhood. This song reminds me.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L86gQQBYSc4

11.The King of Carrot Flowers, Pt 1,” Neutral Milk Hotel. Marvelous song that grabs me by the neck and drags me back to high school.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LULmbLlPvVk

12.2000 Miles,” The Pretenders: Innocence and aching and joy. This song reminds me of the making Finn finally shows Clare, near the end of the book.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V9v5X1a23fU

 

Finally three songs that are just generally good for writing, for me:

13. “Earth People,” Dr. Octagon. If you knew me you would be puzzled to hear this is on all my writing playlists, but somehow I find this song weirdly comforting when I am losing my mind. It confirms it! Yes!! Let’s all gloriously lose our minds! EARTH PEOPLE! NEW YORK AND CALIFORNIA! I WAS BORN ON JUPITER!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjKHQeRSvjk

14. “Spiegel im Spiegel” by Arvo Pärt—it means mirror in mirror. The simplicity of the mirrored parts of the tune meeting and separating and weaving around each other calms me. Pärt’s music really helps me find stillness when I come to writing out of frantic work mode.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJ6Mzvh3XCc

15. Ocean, rain, and other nature sounds. So calming when I’m overwired, and listening to the rain helped put me back in Ireland.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jX6kn9_U8qk

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The Radiant Road

Available January 19, 2016 from Dutton/Penguin

About this Book:

A gorgeously written tale of magic, friendship, and self-discovery set in a dream-like landscape filled with fairies.

After years of living in America, Clare Macleod and her father are returning to Ireland, where they’ll inhabit the house Clare was born in—a house built into a green hillside with a tree for a wall. For Clare, the house is not only full of memories of her mother, but also of a mysterious boy with raven-dark hair and dreamlike nights filled with stars and magic. Clare soon discovers that the boy is as real as the fairy-making magic, and that they’re both in great danger from an ancient foe.

Fast-paced adventure and spellbinding prose combine to weave a tale of love and loyalty in this young adult fantasy.

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Pen Pal Blog Tour: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

January 12th, 2016 Bridget Posted in Blog Tour Comments Off on Pen Pal Blog Tour: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Susan DennardI am so excited we were invited to be apart of the Truthwitch Pen Pal blog tour! I was lucky enough to get to read an early copy of Truthwitch and I loved it! You can check out my full review for the book in the post below.

For the tour, the organizers paired us up with another blog so together we could discuss the book and come up with one unique question to ask Susan. We were paired up with Daphne from Winged Reviews! It was really fun to discuss the book with Daphne. We talked about a bunch of different aspects of the book, but we both decided we really loved the magical system Susan created. In the story there are many different kinds of witches and they all possess different kinds of magic. They also have different strengths and levels of how well they can control their magic. Because we were both fascinated by the magical system we decided to ask our one question about it! To see our question and Susan’s answer scroll down to the middle of this post!

About Susan:

I’ve come a long way from small-town Georgia. As a marine biologist, I got to travel the world—six out of seven continents, to be exact (I’ll get to you yet, Asia!)—before I settled down as a full-time novelist and writing instructor.

I’m the author of the Something Strange and Deadly series as well as the forthcoming Witchlands series (Tor, 2016), and if I’m not writing, then I’m busy slaying darkspawn or earning bruises at the dojo.

I live in the Midwestern US with my French husband, two spoiled dogs, and two grouchy cats. Learn more about my crazy thoughts and crippling cookie-addiction on the blog, newslettertwitter, instagram, or pinterest.

You can visit Susan around the web here:

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Tumblr | YouTube

Want to read more from Susan Dennard?

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Truthwitch pen pal blog tour

Bridget and Daphne

We both found all the different witch powers really interesting in the story, so we were wondering what type of witch and what powers would each of these people possess:

  1. Bridget from Dark Faerie Tales
  2. Daphne from Winged Reviews
  3. Jane Austen
  4. Sherlock Holmes
  5. and your favorite literary character! 

Susan:

What a cool question!

So Bridget, I think you’d make a fantastic Waterwitch—maybe an Icewitch (who can work with snow and frozen water) or a Tidewitch (who manipulates currents and liquid water). Then when you’re snow skiing, you can go really crazy on those slopes!

Daphne, you’re totally a Firewitch since I know how much you like firebending (from Avatar: the Last Airbender). ;) In the Witchlands, Firewitches are super rare and mostly come from the desert empire of Marstok.

Jane Austen is a Wordwitch, for sure! This subset of Aetherwitchery can manipulate written or spoken word to persuade people—or to tell fantastic stories.

Sherlock Holmes? Well, he’d be a Threadwitch, I think. Even though they’re meant to be only women, he’s so perfect! The emotional detachment, the ability to logic his way through any situation, and the insight he has into human character… Yep, he’s a Threadwitch all the way!

And my favorite literary character—Eugenedies from The Thief  by Megan Whalen Turner…I’m not sure what he’d be! I almost think he’d be one of those witchery-less (officially called Elementally Powerless) who are so smart they manage to use everyone else’s magic in their favor. There might be a character like that in Truthwitch, but I won’t tell you which! ;)

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Truthwitch SD

Available  January 5, 2016 by Tor Teen

About this Book:

On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.

In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.

Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.

Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.

Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

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