Book Spotlight: The Moonlight Pegasus

Welcome to the blog tour for The Moonlight Pegasus, by C.S. Johnson. Perfect for Fantasy lovers!

The+Moonlight+Pegasus+cover+ebookThe Moonlight Pegasus

Publication Date: July 2016

Genre: High Fantasy

Sapphira is a desert world with little plant life, where the people live in the shadows of gray sunlight, sickened by the Dark Plague. To cure the people, the Guardian of Dreams sends the Spirit of Truth to bring the light back into his darkened world. In the form of Pegasus, he enters the world through the pure, innocent dreams of Selene, the reluctant princess and heir-apparent to the throne. Now, with her brother Dorian as king, another rebellion is stirring. All eyes are turning to Selene to bring peace through an arranged marriage. However, Selene only has eyes for her true love—her protector, Etoileon. As the rebellion unleashes its fury upon the kingdom of Sapphira and the supernatural forces collide, Selene is caught in the middle of all conflicts—the battle for her world, the battle for her love, and the battle for her very soul.

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt

Etoileon smiled as he pulled out his special gift for Selene—having taken Ronal’s earlier advice, he had a tiny bouquet of deep red ekedlets, small minuscule flowers that smelled like sweet fruit. The ekedlets were tied together with a small yellow ribbon. He’d thought that the small gift would be perfect for her. It had taken him a while to get them, too. He was only allowed into the city, along with the other members of the Palace crew, only twice a month. Etoileon was lucky that he’d known the streets well enough to know where to go so he could get back in time to escort Selene down to the ballroom entrance.

The city was crowded for the opening of the reception. Etoileon had run into more than one person trying to reach his destination, Madame Flora’s Shop. Though he had meant to hurry up, Etoileon slowed down to look around, amazed to see just how the streets had changed to him in so short a time.

He’d been raised on the streets, mostly all alone.

It had been a miracle that he had survived there, let alone to manage to get a job in the Diamond City Palace, considering a job at the palace was a highly coveted position in society. Middle class children often took jobs in the palace, using their connections to be introduced into the flashy world of riches and wealth. After a number of years, they were able to use their earned capital to be educated in the way of society. Using the skills they would acquire from training and teaching of their instructors and parents, the now young adults would be able to be placed in a position where it was likely for a marriage to be arranged or sought after.

Etoileon had none of this.

He had no parents, no real family, few allies … there were plenty of untrustworthy people, enemies, and dangers around every corner. All he had were survival skills, and the good fortune to happen to be in the right place at the right time. As Etoileon leaned back on the tower wall, he thought about the night that he’d met Selene. He did not get too lost in his memories. The Palace was beginning to feel more like home to him as time went on, and his memories of the darker times of his life were beginning to fade.

It was a moment later that the door opened and Selene walked into the Tower room as well.

“Etoileon,” she greeted him, her eyes quickly losing their flicker of surprise and replacing it with an expression of warmth. “I did not think you would be up here this early.”

“You are,” he pointed out, a small smile forming on his face.

“Well,” Selene blushed, “There was something I wanted to do before later.”

“You mean before I came?” Etoileon asked. “What was it?”

“Well … ” Her face had turned even redder, and she looked away as she reached behind her and pulled out a small bag. “I wanted to give this to you later, but I have no objections to giving it to you a little early.”

Etoileon looked down at the bag she placed delicately in his hand. It had been carefully prepared for him, he could tell. The bag was all dressed up, tiny curls of ribbons surrounding the drawstrings of the sack, and made from cheerfully colored fabric.

Selene nodded. “Open it, Etoileon. It’s for you.”

Inside the bag, he found a small silver-framed photograph of Selene and him from a few years ago. It was when he had first undergone his training for the Fighter squad. Selene was sitting in front of him in the picture, while he was standing behind her. He could tell that his eyes had been focused on her; Etoileon figured that he must have missed the camera. His eyes examined the picture closely, running over Selene’s face again and again.

“I don’t remember this picture,” he said slowly.

“It’s from the time that you came storming out of the Fighter’s training room, remember? You were not too happy, I recall. My memory of the reason has faded, but I remember thinking you needed me there,” she said in a hushed voice. “I still come to watch, sometimes.”

I still need you there, he thought. But he could not say that. So instead, he looked over at her intently, and said, “Thank you.”

“So you like it?” Her smile seemed to brighten up the entire evening sky.

“Very much,” he nodded. “That must’ve been the day that Master Norio told me in front of everyone that I had been poorly trained and it would be a miracle if I amounted to anything.”

Selene’s sad smile flitted to her lips. “Poor Master Norio. That has to be the most incorrect he’s ever been.”

Amazon

Enter to win a copy of this epic fantasy HERE!



About the Author

author-pic

C. S. Johnson is the award-winning, genre-hopping author of several novels, including young adult sci-fi and fantasy adventures such as the Starlight Chronicles, the Once Upon a Princess saga, and the Divine Space Pirates trilogy. With a gift for sarcasm and an apologetic heart, she currently lives in Atlanta with her family. Find out more at http://www.csjohnson.me

CS Johnson | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest


Blog Tour Schedule

September 9th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

I Love Books and Stuff (Spotlight) https://ilovebooksandstuffblog.wordpress.com

Read & Rated (Spotlight) https://readandrated.com/

The Reading Chemist (Spotlight) https://thereadingchemist.com/

September 10th

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://www.mybookishbliss.com

Crossroads Reviews (http://www.crossroadreviews.com)

Lunarian Press (Spotlight) https://www.lunarianpress.com/

September 11th

Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

Reading Nook (Spotlight) http://readingnook84.wordpress.com

The Voluptuous Book Diva (Spotlight) http://www.thevoluptuousbookdiva.com/

The Bookish Mrs. Harding (Spotlight) http://thebookishmrsharding.home.blog

September 12th

I’m Into Books (Spotlight) https://www.imintobooks.com

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Spotlight) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

J Bronder’s Book Reviews (Review) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

September 13th

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/

Didi Oviatt (Spotlight) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

Reviews & Promos by Nyx (Spotlight) https://nyxblogs.wordpress.com/

Sophril Reads (Spotlight) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

Blog Tour Organized By:

R&RButto200x200

R&R Book Tours


I finally finished the NEWTS and did my wrap up where I discussed all the books I read over the month of August (spoiler: I read 9 books).

ACTUAL NATURAL HEALTH & WELLNESS PRODUCTS, INC.

Advertisements

Book Review: Last Call At The Nightshade Lounge

Another book crushed during the NEWTS! I know that it is now September but I am just getting around to writing the reviews for the NEWTS books now because I was so busy trying to read them all before August was over. This one was called Last Call At The Nightshade Lounge by Paul Krueger.

Synopsis: College grad Bailey Chen has a few demons: no job, no parental support, and a rocky relationship with Zane, the only friend who’s around when she moves back home. But when Zane introduces Bailey to his cadre of monster-fighting bartenders, her demons get a lot more literal. Like, soul-sucking hell-beast literal. Soon, it’s up to Bailey and the ragtag band of magical mixologists to take on whatever—or whoever—is behind the mysterious rash of gruesome deaths in Chicago, and complete the lost recipes of an ancient tome of cocktail lore.

This book was so good! When I heard about it through a booktuber named “Drums Of Autumn”, I knew I needed to have it. The concept of mixing drinks that enable the person to have superpowers alone is fascinating and I was instantly intrigued.

And then I start reading and find out that it is a diverse book with a mixed-race main character named Bailey and I love it even more. It is really enriching to see more diverse sets of characters in strong leading roles. There is also a Canadian character that I absolutely loved because they didn’t exactly show a stereotypical Canadian person with the “Sorry’s” and the “I love maple syrup” but gave them a multilayered personality that was just a joy to experience.

The book would end some chapters with drink recipes explaining what powers this drink gave you and the magical history behind how it was discovered among the bartenders and mixers. They had drawings of the drinks in an old victorian sketching style.

I normally don’t gravitate towards a book with historical elements (not a fan of historical fiction) but I would love to learn all about the mixing lore and the discovery of magical drinks.

There is a lot of action, some romance and a take on superpowers that I have never experienced before. It was very easy to get through and I found myself having a hard time putting this book down! I would recommend this book to anyone that wants a fun urban fantasy book that is very well-paced and honestly should be a series….hint hint….Paul, make another book like this!

Book Rating: 5/5

You can buy this book on Amazon and find it on Goodreads!

Disclaimer: I was given this book as a gift and I read it because I wanted to. I was in no way compensated to give it an honest review.


It is finally September and I completed my NEWTS TBR but until I make that video, here is my September TBR where I talk about the books I will be reading this month and announce my giveaway winner!

Blooms Today 25% Sitewide Savings

Book Review: After The World

Our external reviewer Sara took another swing at a new book. She has been busy with her crafts over at Adorkable Little Creatures (her latest inspiration comes from Black Panther) but she still managed to find some time to read. This one had been on our TBR pile for a while. It is called After The World by Maire Brophy. Check out her review below!

40020680._SY475_

Synopsis: After the war is lost, all that remains is to survive. And when you know what you’ve done, you can’t hope for anything more.

Bereft in a hostile world, an orc general struggles to come to terms with his role in the destruction of his people. Running and hiding from the humans and elves that hunt him down, he searches for other orc survivors.

When two human wizards finally pin him down in an abandoned orcish mountain fortress, he must use his wits and cunning to prevail, redeeming himself and the magic of his people.

After the World by Maire Brophy is a unique and fun light fantasy novel. Told from the point of view of our narrator, an orc, we learn about how his world has ended, and his struggle to find new meaning in a world that he helped destroy.

This novel was written in such a way that you felt as if the narrator truly was an orc, without it being an over-the-top alien feeling. He definitely seems humanoid, with some fun little quirks because of being an orc. I enjoyed the balance between these two styles.

I also enjoyed not being able to predict where the book was going. There are no cliches here, which is so hard to find, especially in a novel that reads on the line between adult and young adult content. The development of both the plot and the character is really well done and feels very natural. I enjoyed staying up too late to read this!

I can’t think of anything that I wished for more from this book. It was a fun read, and different than you’d expect. I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone with any fantasy interest looking for something unique.

Book Rating: 5/5

You can find this book on Amazon and Goodreads!

Disclaimer: This book was sent to us in ebook format by the author to read and give an honest review.


Rapid Fire Book Tag you say? I tried to answer these questions on the fly! Thanks to Dominic from Reading Fandom for tagging me to do this.

Blooms Today 25% Sitewide Savings

Book Spotlight: Wild, Dark Times

WDTimes Digital coverWild, Dark Times

Expected Publication Date:July 23rd, 2019

Genre: Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal

It’s the summer of 2012 and Elizabeth Megalos is a disillusioned art-school grad getting by as a bank teller in St. Louis. One evening, she’s attacked by a possessed coworker and saved by a mysterious, wise-cracking sorcerer named Eddy. He drags Elizabeth and Hugh—a skeptical scholar of the occult—to Europe, where he introduces them to his three magical celebrity friends. Once there, Eddy explains the group’s mission: preventing a Demiurge—a creature out of Gnostic Christian mythology—from fulfilling the visions of doom in the Book of Revelation. The Demiurge has been drawing power from the misguided beliefs in the Mayan apocalypse and is set to start the destruction on Dec. 21st, 2012. Through ritual magic and a series of psychedelic experiences, the group learns that Elizabeth is the key to taking down the Demiurge, though she can’t imagine how she will be the one to stop Armageddon.

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt

“OK. Seriously. Please. Tell me exactly who you are, what you’re doing, how you made my phone fly into your hand, and why the fuck my co-worker just assaulted me,” said Elizabeth, the last of her patience dwindling.

“You can call me Eddy,” he said. “The milk is for the protection spirit I called to keep us safe for now. As for your coworker… well, she’s possessed by a qlippoth, which is pretty much a vampiric assemblage of cravings, guilt, self-loathing, and a whole other mess of nasty emotional energies. Most are made when the sad and pathetic losers of the world jerk off to some of the sickest porn the bowels of the Internet can shit out. Obviously, there’s a fair number of these icky beasties around. This particular one’s been coalescing around your back alley. Probably feeding off of your used tampons or something. They like those. Used condoms and jerk-off rags too. Genital fluids are like bonbons for these things. And sometimes they’re able to possess people with very little emotional control and/or intelligence during certain astronomical phases. My guess is your coworker wasn’t exactly a shining example of emotional stability. As for the phone: involving the cops would just complicate things, so I used a little arcane prestidigitation to take it from you for the moment.”

“What the fuck are you talking about?” asked Elizabeth.

“OK, we need to skip past the whole ‘Spirits? Magic? Are you crazy?’ shit because we’ve got a hungry, demon-possessed hippie trying to break in and drink our nether juices, and I for one don’t want that chick anywhere near my junk.”

Available on Amazon

About the Author

jason_gray-1-2 (1) (1).jpg

Austin Case received a Master’s Degree from the University of Amsterdam in Western Esotericism and Mysticism. His academic knowledge of the occult and other peripheral phenomena has given him a unique take on fantasy and speculative fiction.

Austin Case | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


WildDarkTimes

Blog Tour Schedule

August 26th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

Entertainingly Nerdy (Spotlight) https://www.entertaininglynerdy.com

I Smell Sheep (Spotlight) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/

August 27th

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

Touch My Spine Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://touchmyspinebookreviews.com

August 28th

My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://mybookishbliss.com

Didi Oviatt (Spotlight) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

Shalini’s Books and Reviews (Spotlight) https://bookreviewsbyshalini.com/

August 29th

Inked and Blonde (Review) http://www.inkedandblondeonline.co.uk

Just 4 My Books (Spotlight) http://www.just4mybooks.wordpress.com

Scarlett Readz & Runz (Spotlight) https://scarlettreadzandrunz.com/

August 30th

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

J Bronder Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

Blog Tour Organized By:

R&RButto200x200

R&R Book Tours


Rapid Fire Book Tag you say? I tried to answer these questions on the fly! Thanks to Dominic from Reading Fandom for tagging me to do this.

Blooms Today 25% Sitewide Savings

Book Spotlight: The Devil’s Apprentice

I’m very excited to share this book with you all today! The Devil’s Apprentice in the first book in the incredibly imaginative, and wonderfully entertaining, YA Fantasy series, The Great Devil War.

There will be exclusive content and a giveaway so be sure to read on!

The-Devil’s-Apprentice_l

The Devil’s Apprentice (The Great Devil War #1)

Genre: YA Fantasy

Philip is a good boy, a really good boy, who accidentally gets sent to Hell to become the Devil’s heir. The Devil, Lucifer, is dying and desperately in need of a successor, but there’s been a mistake and Philip is the wrong boy. Philip is terrible at being bad, but Lucifer has no other choice than to begin the difficult task of training him in the ways of evil. Philip gets both friends and enemies in this odd, gloomy underworld—but who can he trust, when he discovers an evil-minded plot against the dark throne?

Even though the story (mostly) takes place in Hell and deals with themes like evil, death and free will, it is also a humoristic tale about good and evil seen from a different perspective. A tale that hopefully will make the reader – young or old, boy or girl – laugh and think. – Kenneth B. Andersen

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt

“You’re fairly young, aren’t you?” A forked tongue moistened his scaly fingers, and he flipped through more pages. “How old are you?”

“I’m thirteen.”

“Thirteen?” the beast mumbled, clearly impressed. “It’s not very often they come to us so young. You must’ve done something really horrific.”

“What do you mean?” Philip shook his head. “What is this place?”

“This place?” The monster raised an eyebrow. “Haven’t you figured it out yet? Oh well, evilness and stupidity often go hand in hand.” His crooked smile revealed pointed teeth, and his gruff voice lowered to a hiss. “This, my boy, is the outer court of Hell. That—” he directed a hooked nail at the black gate, “is Hell.”

“Hell?” Philip whispered, and he saw it all again in his mind. The cat that had spoken to him. The shove to his back that had sent him hurtling into the street. Sam’s triumphant howling. The sound of squealing brakes. The car and the elderly man behind the wheel. And the darkness that had followed.

A dream, he’d said as he stood at the top of the long stairwell, knowing deep inside that it was a lie. This was no dream.

The car hit me, he thought. It hit me, and I’m dead. I died, and now I’m in… in…

“Hell?” he repeated, totally confused. How could he be in Hell? Only evil people went to Hell. Right? “I’m in Hell?”

“You need to say that three times before it sinks in?” the demon said, skimming through his book. “But it could be worse. Plenty others have to say it many more times before it sinks in. Ah, here it is! Let me see.” From the breast pocket of his robe he drew out a pair of silver-framed spectacles and put them on. The demon scanned the page quickly, using his finger as a guide.

“Just like I said,” he shouted angrily, pounding the book with his balled fist. “No one was supposed to enter tonight! Not for a few hours anyway, when an entire troop of politicians were to arrive!” The creature shook his head resignedly. “Well, since you’ve already spoiled my night off, I might as well send you straight to your punishment. What is your name, kid?”

Philip didn’t reply, but stared at the demon, dumbstruck.

“Wake up! We don’t have all night. Eternity waits. Your name?”

Philip cleared his throat timidly. “Philip.”

“Philip, Philip, Philip,” the demon mumbled, riffling back and forth a few pages. He wrinkled his brow. “That’s odd. Last name?”

Philip told him his full name, and once again the demon searched in his book. The wrinkles in his brow deepened, and his yellow nails scratched at his scalp. Then he shook his head and clapped the book shut with a sigh. “That name isn’t in the registry. Some dumb fool has made a mistake, kid. You’re not supposed to be here.”

“I’m not?” Philip said and felt a warm relief spreading through him. Then his eyes fell on the inky, thick darkness that enveloped the walls of Hell, and his sense of relief vanished. “Then where should I be?”

Available on Amazon!

The Great Devil War Books 1 – 3

Outlook-sxiohn0q

For your chance to win a digital copy of The Devil’s Apprentice, click the link below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author

kba_5_thumb

I WAS BORN IN DENMARK ON A DARK AND STORMY NIGHT IN NOVEMBER 1976 …

… and I began writing when I was a teenager. My first book was a really awful horror novel titled Nidhug’s Slaves. It didn’t get published. Luckily.

During the next 7 years, I wrote nearly 20 novels–all of which were rejected–while working as a school teacher. The rest of the time I spent writing.

In 2000 I published my debut fantasy book, The Battle of Caïssa, and that’s when things really took off. Since then I’ve published more than thirty-five books for children and young adults in genres ranging from fantasy to horror and science fiction.

My books have been translated into more than 15 languages and my series about the superhero Antboy has been adapted for film, which is available on Netflix. An animated tv series is currently in development.

A musical of The Devil’s Apprentice opened in the fall 2018 and the movie rights for the series have also been optioned.

I live in Copenhagen with my wife, two boys, a dog named Milo and spiders in the basement.

About THE GREAT DEVIL WAR: The Great Devil War was published in Denmark from 2005-2016, beginning with The Devil’s Apprentice.

Even though the story (mostly) takes place in Hell and deals with themes like evil, death and free will, it is also a humoristic tale about good and evil seen from a different perspective. A tale that hopefully will make the reader – young or old, boy or girl – laugh and think.

Welcome to the other side!

Kenneth B. Andersen | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram


TheDevils

Blog Tour Schedule

August 19th

Reads & Reels (Review) http://readsandreels.com

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

Gwendalyn’s Books (Review) https://gwendalynbooks.blog/

August 20th

YA/NA Book Divas (Excerpt) http://www.yabookdivas.com/

Ity Reads Books (Review) http://www.ityreadsbooks.home.blog

Reviews and Promos by Nyx (Review) https://nyxblogs.wordpress.com/

Quirky Cats Fat Stacks (Review) https://quirkycatsfatstacks.com/

August 21st

B is for Book Review (Excerpt) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

An Ocean A Glimmer (Review) http://anoceanglimmer.wordpress.com

I’m All About Books (Excerpt) https://imallaboutbooks.com/

J Bronder Book Reviews (Excerpt) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

August 22nd

Jaunts & Haunts (Review) https://jonathanpongratz.com/

Shalini’s Books and Reviews (Review) https://bookreviewsbyshalini.com/

The Bookworm Drinketh (Review) http://thebookwormdrinketh.wordpress.com/

I Love Books and Stuff (Excerpt) https://ilovebooksandstuffblog.wordpress.com

My Bookish Bliss (Excerpt) http://mybookishbliss.com

Didi Oviatt (Excerpt) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

August 23rd

Breakeven Books (Excerpt) https://breakevenbooks.com

Entertainingly Nerdy (Review) https://www.entertaininglynerdy.com

Cats Luv Coffee (Review) https://catsluvcoffeez.blogspot.com/

Blog Tour Organized By

R&RButto200x200

R&R Book Tours


I know I said I was on a book buying ban but here are all the books I got for my birthday!

Also for all you fantasy lovers out there, my friend Moud Adel (author of the War Remnants which I reviewed in July) has created this new game called Majority Rules where you get to decide what happens in his fantasy story. You will read the story and then vote in a poll for what you want the next scene to be. YOU take control and YOU make the decisions. Every Thursday, there will be new scene options so it is a continuous game! Check it out by clicking on the image below!

Join the game:

https://mastoperia.com/majority-rules/

Blooms Today 25% Sitewide Savings

Book Review: The Warded Man

I decided to pick up this book because one of the prompts for the NEWTS Magical Readathon was to “read a friend’s favorite book”. In this case, I chose Markus and his favorite book is The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett.

20190809_1628326728017359154736930.jpg

Synopsis: As darkness falls after sunset, the corelings rise—demons who possess supernatural powers and burn with a consuming hatred of humanity. For hundreds of years the demons have terrorized the night, slowly culling the human herd that shelters behind magical wards—symbols of power whose origins are lost in myth and whose protection is terrifyingly fragile. It was not always this way. Once, men and women battled the corelings on equal terms, but those days are gone. Night by night the demons grow stronger, while human numbers dwindle under their relentless assault. Now, with hope for the future fading, three young survivors of vicious demon attacks will dare the impossible, stepping beyond the crumbling safety of the wards to risk everything in a desperate quest to regain the secrets of the past. Together, they will stand against the night.

This was one of the first epic fantasy books that I have read and I really enjoyed it! The world building was great and the way it instilled fear in the reader for the characters and there lives that were at stake was phenomenal.

It was such a cool concept to have demons rise every night when the sun goes down. The people are only able to protect themselves with magic wards. The book definitely gets very dark in some areas and I thought that this added to its great storytelling ability because not everything is always rainbows and butterflies. People will live or die based upon the intense decisions they make each day and that is the feeling you get for the 3 main characters of the book.

I also quite enjoyed this it was split into 3 story arcs and unveiled little bits of each character as it kept switching perspectives each chapter. It gives you more insight into the different areas of this massive world the author has created while staying relevant to the plot.

The demons described in the book sound very cool (and very terrifying). I would not want to be up close and personal with any of them because they would probably be the last thing I see.

I would strongly recommend this book to anyone that wants to start a great epic fantasy series (there are 5 in total). I know I will be picking up the next one soon!

Book Rating: 4.5/5

You can buy this book on Amazon and find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: I borrowed this book in physical format to read and give an honest review.


I finally finished unpacking and getting settled and decided to do a massive unhaul of the books I have already read and probably won’t pick up again. Plus there is a GIVEAWAY at the end of the video so check it out!

Also for all you fantasy lovers out there, my friend Moud Adel (author of the War Remnants which I reviewed in July) has created this new game called Majority Rules where you get to decide what happens in his fantasy story. You will read the story and then vote in a poll for what you want the next scene to be. YOU take control and YOU make the decisions. Every Thursday, there will be new scene options so it is a continuous game! Check it out by clicking on the image below!

Join the game:

https://mastoperia.com/majority-rules/

Blooms Today 25% Sitewide Savings

Book Highlight: Prowling The Darkness

Take a journey east with Rayden Valkyrie as she undertakes one of her most harrowing adventures yet! Prowling the Darkness is the latest release in the Rayden Valkyrie Tales!

A return to hard-hitting, gritty sword and sorcery with an iconic and inspiring main character, the Rayden Valkyrie Tales are a growing collection of stand-alone novellas that will elate fans of the genre!

The Prowling the Darkness Blog Tour features reviews, interviews, guest posts, video, and top ten lists! As a novella, Prowling the Darkness is a shorter and quicker read for reviewers too!

About the author:  Stephen Zimmer is an award-winning author and filmmaker based out of Lexington Kentucky. His works include the Rayden Valkyrie novels (Sword and Sorcery), the Rising Dawn Saga (Cross Genre), the Fires in Eden Series (Epic Fantasy), the Hellscapes short story collections (Horror), the Chronicles of Ave short story collections (Fantasy), the Harvey and Solomon Tales (Steampunk), and the forthcoming Faraway Saga (YA Dystopian/Cross-Genre).

Stephen’s visual work includes the feature film Shadows Light, shorts films such as The Sirens and Swordbearer, and the forthcoming Rayden Valkyrie: Saga of a Lionheart TV Pilot.

Stephen is a proud Kentucky Colonel who also enjoys the realms of music, martial arts, good bourbons, and spending time with family.

Book Synopsis for Prowling the Darkness:   Dark rumors and whisperings of unholy sorcery bring Rayden Valkyrie to the remote city of Sereth-Naga.

There she finds a populace cowering in fear of the city’s ruthless, mysterious rulers, who remain behind the high walls of their citadel.

An even greater mystery surrounds the city.

Something is prowling the darkness.

Something that has kept the enigmatic rulers for centuries from escaping Sereth-Naga to spread their wickedness to other lands.

Prowling the Darkness is a stand-alone novella that is part of the Rayden Valkyrie Tales.

Author Links:

Website: www.stephenzimmer.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/stephenzimmer7
Twitter: @sgzimmer
Instagram: @stephenzimmer7

Guest Post: Building the World of Rayden Valkyrie

 The world of Rayden Valkyrie is an exciting and diverse one, filled with a wide array of lands, cultures, creatures, and characters. More and more of this world is being revealed through the two collections of novellas featuring the Rayden Valkyrie and Ragnar Stormbringer characters.

It is a world that is distinct and different from the world of Ave portrayed in my epic fantasy Fires in Eden Series. I strive to have a more ancient world feel in Rayden’s tales, while also hinting of an even more ancient age, remnants of which make their appearances in the various adventures and tales.

My approach to world building focuses upon creating realistic and well-rounded cultures, some of them historically-inspired, and others original in nature. Each culture has a full history of its own, heroes and leaders, a religion, means of trade (whether barter, or coin-based), a geography that it inhabits (and that geography, hosting certain types of plants, wildlife, terrain, weather patterns, and natural resources, will have a significant influence on the kind of culture that develops within it), and an interrelation with other lands or elements of that world (which can be antagonistic or benevolent in nature).

I think that good world building embraces a comprehensive approach to each culture. The reader may not get to experience all aspects of a land or culture in a given tale, but the author needs to have the foundation in mind so that the dynamics of the culture, behavior of the characters from it, and other elements flow naturally through the course of the narrative and action. I recommend avoiding the urge to “info-dump”, though a little extra info may be useful in certain situations, when soaking in something major in the story like a large new city.

Having a solid understanding of the world and its various lands and cultures provides great fodder for storytelling. The conflicts between cultures/realms can be reflected in the interactions between characters, create dynamic encounters, and much more.

A good understanding of the world in the author’s mind can also be the source of inspiration for new stories. This is precisely how the novella Prowling the Darkness came about. It is a stand-alone tale, but it takes place right after the events in the novella Blood of a Queen. It features a remote city-state called Sereth-Naga ruled over by an enigmatic group of beings called the Sharir-Mord.

The people of Sereth-Naga are inspired by the people of ancient city-states and areas of Persia, while the Sharir-Mord’s inspiration is entirely original in nature.

The culture of the people in the city of Sereth-Naga has been strongly affected by the Sharir-Mord, to the degree that the people are almost like cattle to the Sharir-Mord “Farmer”. The presence of an even more ancient world is reflected in the entities lurking in the darkness in the land around Sereth-Naga, who become a very pivotal part of the story. Like the Sharir-Mord, these entities are derived from an original inspiration.

Rayden Valkyrie goes alone into this world, among the people, the Sharir-Mord, and the legendary entities prowling the landscape around the city. While I do not get to reveal everything about the culture of the people, the things in the darkness, or the Sharir-Mord, their cultures inform everything regarding the actions and decisions of the characters that Rayden meets and encounters.

I am confident that by the end of the story, the reader has a great feel for this part of Rayden’s world, and that Sereth-Naga has an organic and realistic atmosphere about it. Ultimately, I find that I am in a very good position for future tales that involving one of the groups encountered during Prowling the Darkness. All of that is made possible by comprehensive world building.

I invite you to read Prowling the Darkness for yourself and begin your exploration of Rayden’s dynamic and diverse world!


Tour Schedule and Activities

8/7      Armed with a Book    http://www.armedwithabook.com Review

8/7      I Smell Sheep  http://www.ismellsheep.com/        Guest Post

8/7      Fragile Winds http://mariadkins.blogspot.com      Guest Post

8/8      The Most Sublime      http://www.themostsublime.com   Review

8/8      Breakeven Books       https://breakevenbooks.com           Guest Post

8/9      Armed with a Book    http://www.armedwithabook.com Interview      

8/10    Horror Tree    https://www.horrortree.com          Guest Post

8/10    Sheila’s Guests and Reviews http://sheiladeeth.blogspot.com     Guest Post

8/11    Speculative Fiction Spot        http://specfictionspot.blogspot.com/         Guest Post

8/12    Literary Underworld http://www.literaryunderworld.com          Guest Post

8/13    Jazzy Book Reviews    http://bookreviewsbyjasmine.blogspot.com Video Interview

8/13    The Book Junkie Reads          https://thebookjunkiereadspromos.blogspot.com Guest Post

8/14    Stuart Conover’s Homepage https://www.stuartconover.com     Top Ten’s List

8/14    Bookish Valhalla  https://www.bookishvalhalla.com  Review

Links for Prowling the Darkness

Kindle Version:  https://www.amazon.com/Prowling-Darkness-Rayden-Valkyrie-Tale-ebook/dp/B07R75X26Z/

Barnes and Noble Link for Prowling the Darkness: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/prowling-the-darkness-stephen-zimmer/1131360526?ean=2940161456958

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/prowling-the-darkness

iTunes: https://books.apple.com/us/book/prowling-the-darkness/id1463010144


 

July was a busy month for me but I still managed to read 5 books! Check out my wrap up to see what I thought about them!

Book Review: War Remnants

Hey bookworms! Recently, I was approached by a bookstagrammer friend of mine to read and review the novella that they wrote. At first, I was a little hesitant because I have interacted with them a bunch on Instagram and was worried that if I didn’t like the book then it would be awkward. The book is called War Remnants by Moud Adel.

46406461._SY475_-2

Synopsis: When the price of Gate Magic is a shorter life spent with your loved ones, will you want to keep that door closed?

Prepared to give up all of his power for a few more years with his family, Rakamai, the leader of his faction, a Magic Master who swore to defend his people against those who possess special powers, believed the only way out was to offer peace. But in a world where factions love to be enemies, his dream would soon be shattered.

Yamen, a Forest Elder, reminds Rakamai that controlling Majestic animals is a power he should always fear, and trapped in another war, Rakamai has a decision to make. Protect the legacy of his people or save his son from the hatred plaguing his world.

Now, when the Forbidden Warriors, the strongest in his world, are hunting him down, Rakamai must first escape their wrath before choosing between a longer life for himself or peace for the next generation.

I can happily say that I enjoyed the book. I was really interested in the magic system and wanted to know more about the different factions and their powers/abilities. I believe that they could have been explored more and kind of wish that this was an actual full-length book and not a novella so that we could get that history and build more on this world.

The battle scenes were very descriptive and showed the range of powers that each adversary had. I enjoyed that they mixed modern weapons into the magic.

I did get a little bit lost with the names. A lot of them were very similar so at times I was getting confused as to whom I was reading about. And a lot of them started with the same letter so that didn’t make it any easier to differentiate them.

It is a great setup for a full on series and I would love to read the series and learn more about these characters.

Book Rating: 4/5

You can buy this book on Amazon and find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the author in the ebook format to read and give an honest review.


Watch my Small Booktuber Tag video where I talk about what it is like to be a small booktuber and all the amazing people in the community!

Blooms Today 25% Sitewide Savings

Book Review: The Serpent Bearer and The Prince of Stars

 

Serpent Bearer

Welcome to The Serpent-Bearer and the Prince of Stars blog tour! Read on to learn more about this beautifully illustrated graphic novel by C.S. Johnson, and a chance to win a copy for yourself!

The Serpent-Bearer and the Prince of Stars

Publication Date: November 7th, 2018

Genre: Manga Style/ Graphic Novel

Length: 30 Pages

A tiresome task.
A deceptive dragon.
A prince that changes everything.

Ophiuchus is a celebrated warrior of the Celestial Kingdom and a warrior among the Stars. He has been always been a dutiful servant of the Prince of Stars. So when the prince asks him to watch over the crafty serpent, Naga, Ophiuchus agrees. But as time passes and discouragement—both from Naga and others—Ophiuchus wonders if the Prince of Stars was right in asking him to take on the burdens of his task.

Will Ophiuchus honor his duty, or give into his heart’s weariness?

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt

20190717_093848

Available on Amazon!

Book Review

It was quite quick and it was interesting to learn about the different gods of the zodiac as characters. I believe that at parts, there was too much speech in the bubbles and it could have been split up a bit into more graphics but the overall feel was fun.

I liked Cancer the most. He was an adorable little crab. I am not sure if I would continue with the series but I did enjoy this one.

About the Author

Author Pic

C. S. Johnson is the award-winning, genre-hopping author of several novels, including young adult sci-fi and fantasy adventures such as the Starlight Chronicles, the Once Upon a Princess saga, and the Divine Space Pirates trilogy. With a gift for sarcasm and an apologetic heart, she currently lives in Atlanta with her family. Find out more at http://www.csjohnson.me

CS Johnson | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

For a chance to win your own copy of The Serpent-Bearer and the Prince of Stars, click the link below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Serpent-Bearer

Blog Tour Schedule

July 22nd

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

I Smell Sheep (Review) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Tsarina Press (Spotlight) https://www.tsarinapress.com

I Love Books and Stuff (Spotlight) https://ilovebooksandstuffblog.wordpress.com

Quirky Cats Fat Stacks (Review) https://quirkycatsfatstacks.com/

Perspective of a Writer (Review) http://perspectiveofawriter.com/

July 23rd

Breakeven Books (Review) https://breakevenbooks.com

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/

B is for Book Review (Spotlight) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com

July 24th

Books Teacup and Reviews (Spotlight) https://booksteacupnreviews.wordpress.com/

Graphic Novelty2 (Review) https://graphicnovelty2.com/

Bri’s Book Nook (Review) http://brisbooknook.wordpress.com

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

I’m All About the Books (Spotlight) https://imallaboutbooks.com/

July 25th

My Comic Relief (Review) https://mycomicrelief.wordpress.com/

The Bibliophagist (Review) http://thebibliophagist.blog/

Adventures Thru Wonderland (Review) http://adventuresthruwonderland.blogspot.com/

Where Dragons Reside (Review) https://kernerangelina.live/

July 26th

Sophril Reads (Spotlight) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

Triquetra Reviews (Spotlight) http://www.triquetrareviews.blogspot.com

J Bronder Book Reviews (Review) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Review) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

Dash Fan Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/

Blog Tour Organized By:

R&RButto200x200

R&R Book Tours


Watch my Small Booktuber Tag video where I talk about what it is like to be a small booktuber and all the amazing people in the community!

SinuSave 100% Natural Nasal Spray

Author Interview: Ben Galley

Ben Galley is an author of dark and epic fantasy books who currently hails from Victoria, Canada. Since publishing his debut The Written in 2010, Ben has released a range of award-winning fantasy novels, including the weird western Bloodrush and the epic standalone The Heart of Stone. He is also the author of the brand new Chasing Graves Trilogy.

cLOWGWRx.png-large

Author Interview

1. What is your top read of 2019 so far? 

I must admit, given my workload this year, the reading has taken a bit of a back seat. However, I’ve been catching up in recent weeks, and I’ve been utterly blown away by Neil Gaiman’s Norse Mythology. It’s a book I’ve been wishing existed since my obsession with Norse Mythology began at an early age.  Gaiman does an excellent job marrying his excellent prose with the majesty – and frankly madness – of the Norse mythos.

I am so happy he said this! We have a book we both read and loved (and we both read it recently too).

2. What is your favorite book friendship? 

I’m a huge fan of the First Law Trilogy by Joe Abercrombie, and the friendship between Dogman and Logen Ninefingers is not only a highly enjoyable one but a funny one, too. I could read a series just featuring those two, with all their misadventures and narrow escapes. Their personalities clash and intertwine in intricate ways together and yet stand alone as fully-realized characters when they’re apart.

3. Most anticipated book release of 2019? 

2019 seems to be an exciting year for books! I’m looking forward to throwing Dark Age by Pierce Brown into my TBR pile, along with the Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang, and hopefully (fingers crossed) Thorn of Emberlain by Scott Lynch and Doors of Stone by Patrick Rothfuss.

Can’t wait for Dark Age! This guy know his good books.

4. How many books are in your TBR Pile? 

I dread to think… Currently, I think my TBR pile, in its entirety, has about 65 books in it. The summit of Mount TBR at the moment consists of The Hod King by Josiah Bancroft, City of Lies by Sam Hawke, and the End of the Line by Gray Williams.

5. Who is your favorite author? 

That is a tough one, however, based on the level of inspiration they’ve brought to my life and writing career, and the sheer mastery of their work, I would have to say J.R.R. Tolkien. An obvious choice, perhaps, but The Hobbit and LotR kindled a fierce passion in me for fantasy and writing. That passion put me on the path I still tread today.

6. How did you start writing? 

I started quite young. Thanks to spending my formative years devouring Middle Earth, Narnia, and Redwall, it wasn’t long before I started to write as well as read. I decided to attempt a novel aged 11, and managed to write two by my early teens. I believe that gave me a solid foundation for when I decided to make a professional go of being an author when I was 21. I spent a year or two working on my debut, The Written, and launched it in late 2010. I haven’t looked back since!

7. Where is your favorite reading spot? 

My favorite spot doubles as one of my favorite writing spots. There’s a little bar just on the edge of Victoria Harbour that looks over the Juan De Fuca strait between Vancouver Island and Washington. On clear days, the snow-capped mountains dominate the horizon while ships potter about below, and if you’re lucky, you might just glimpse a humpback or pods of orcas traveling through.

8. How long have you been an author? 
I would say since aged 11 or 12 when I realized that writing was all I wanted to do in life. However, in regards to publishing and selling books, I would say I’ve been an author since 2009.

9. What do you like about reading? 

The escape. When I read, the world around me fades away and my entire attention is focused on the text. I have a very visual imagination and mindset, so can see every action and scene all playing out behind my eyes as I read. That combination of absorbing an author’s prose and yet conjuring up your own imagery and ideas is fantastic, and so hard to achieve with other media such as films and games, in which the visuals are already constructed for you. It’s a kind of magic that only books can offer.

10. If you had to describe yourself in a book title, what would it be?

Great question! And difficult, too… I would have to go with “Magic, Mischief, and Malt Whisky: An Epic, If Not Narcissistic, Saga.


Check out my No Disclaimers tag video where I answer questions regarding books and the bookish community!

Beliosa