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A blog about books and other things speculative

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Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011

And the winners are....

No Proper Lady by Isabel Cooper (2 copies)

Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011

The Question:  If you were time traveling to the past, what is the one thing you would absolutely want to bring with you?

Scorpio1974 who said...
I don't know what I would take to travel back to the past. Maybe my laptop and hope it worked, lol!

and

Laura H. who said...
Thanks for the giveaway! The one "thing" I would absolutely want to bring with me is toilet paper!


Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011


The Darkest Surrender (Lords of the Underworld) by Gena Showalter

Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011

The Question:  What is your favorite book by Gena or which of her books are looking forward to the most?

Barbara who said...
OMG...I LOVE Gena's books! Especially the Lords. I even have their butterfly tattooed on my left foot, no lie! So, you will understand when I tell you that it's tough to choose a favorite. I CAN tell you that I'm looking forward to reading about Paris, William and Torin...and Dallas (from Alien Huntress)...and the new Royal House of Shadows series has me waiting breathlessly too! I could go on and on and on....


Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011


The Immorality Engine (Newbury & Hobbes Investigation 3) by George Mann

Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011

The Question:  Which cover of The Immorality Engine do you like better?

Sheree who said...
I prefer the US version. The UK version seems too busy even if it has Queen Victoria on it.


Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011


Song of the Nile (Cleopatra's Daughter 2) by Stephanie Dray

Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011

The Question:  Who is your favorite historical person?

Sabrina who said...
One of the historical figures that I find very fascinating is Belisarius, the Byzantine General. Reading about his campaigns got me interested in the Byzantine empire.


Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011


The winners have been notified and have until 11:59 PM on Saturday, October 15, 2011 to respond or The Qwillery will very randomly choose a new winner or winners.

Interview with Isabel Cooper and Giveway - September 26, 2011

Please welcome Isabel Cooper to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Isabel:  I don’t really need peace and quiet to write: I completed most of No Proper Lady when I was at work, and have written the sequel while on lunch break or on the train. I’m very good at tuning out distractions when I’m writing, which lets me get work done, but which I suspect makes me reasonably hard to live with.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Isabel:  My favorites in fantasy and horror: Stephen King, Mercedes Lackey, Robin McKinley, J.R.R. Tolkien, H.P. Lovecraft, S.M. Sterling, and E.E. Knight. In romance, my favorites include Emma Holly, Angela Knight, Julie Anne Long, Rose Lerner, and Susanna Fraser.

All of these writers have been pretty influential to my writing, since I pick up influences like a sponge. Lovecraft, King, Sterling, and Knight have probably contributed the most to my world-building (though I do a somewhat more optimistic universe than H.P.), while Carey, Holly, and Knight have been most influential on my romance plots.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

Isabel:  That depends on how many meetings I have to sit through. I tend to write out vague plots when I’m in boring situations and need to look like I’m writing, then flesh things out more spontaneously.

TQ:  Describe No Proper Lady in 140 characters or less.

Isabel:  She’s an assassin from a future where demons rule Earth. He’s a Victorian occultist whose friend turned to a dark path. They fight crime!

TQ:  What inspired you to write No Proper Lady?

Isabel:  I tend to write stories in my head when I’m walking—I commute on foot a fair amount—and one of them started with a Victorian guy watching as a woman in leather armor skinned some sort of demon. That seemed to lend itself to time travel, and I decided I wanted to give my heroine a reason to come back in time: “sent from the future to change the past” came to mind, as it would for anyone of my generation, and the novel took off from there.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do to create the world of No Proper Lady?

Isabel:  The Internet was very helpful, particularly since I wrote a lot of the novel at work, where looking things up in books would be risky! That said, I learned a lot from Daily Life in Victorian England, What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew, and Inventing the Victorians. It also helped that I’d taken a couple classes in college on magical belief and practice through the ages, and I keep in touch pretty well with the professor who taught them. Some of the material there provided the occult details.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in the novel?

Isabel:  I’m really fond of the final confrontation and some of the lines I got there; I also quite like the dancing scenes, both the one where Simon is giving Joan lessons and the one where they’re actually at the ball. The fancy dress and the charge of dancing with someone you’re attracted to is a lot of fun to describe.

TQ:  In No Proper Lady, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Isabel:  Joan was definitely the easiest. Her voice came very naturally to me, and I had no trouble figuring out what she’d do in any given situation.
Eleanor, on the other hand, was really tough. I needed to show her progression out of trauma to a place where she can take initiative, and pacing that was hard.

TQ:  How many books are planned for Englefield series?

Isabel:  The Englefield series has three books so far: No Proper Lady, No Honest Woman, and No Time at All. Each is going to be a basically stand-alone novel, though with some characters overlapping.

TQ:  What's next?

Isabel:  Next is No Honest Woman, a novel set at Englefield when it becomes a school for future guardians of humanity—sort of Victorian magical X-Men. Two of the faculty start out fighting and end up falling for each other, while the students and their powers cause all sorts of trouble.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Isabel:  Thank you for having me!



About No Proper Lady

No Proper Lady
Englefield 1
Sourcebooks Casablanca (September 1, 2011)

Interview with Isabel Cooper and Giveway - September 26, 2011
It’s Terminator meets My Fair Lady in this fascinating debut of black magic and brilliant ball gowns, martial arts, and mysticism.

England, 1888. The trees are green, the birds are singing, and in 200 years demons will destroy it all. Unless Joan, a rough-around-the-edges assassin from the future, can take out the dark magician responsible. But to get close to her target she’ll need help learning how to fit into polite Victorian society to get close to her target.

Simon Grenville has his own reasons for wanting to destroy Alex Reynell. The man used to be his best friend—until his practice of the dark arts almost killed Simon’s sister. The beautiful half-naked stranger Simon meets in the woods may be the perfect instrument for his revenge. It will just take a little time to teach her the necessary etiquette and assemble a proper wardrobe. But as each day passes, Simon is less sure he wants Joan anywhere near Reynell. Because no spell in the world will save his future if she isn’t in it.


About Isabel

Interview with Isabel Cooper and Giveway - September 26, 2011
Debut author Isabel Cooper lives in Boston and maintains her guise as a mild-mannered project manager working in legal publishing. She only travels through time the normal way and has never fought a demon, but she can waltz. Her next book, No Honest Woman, will be in stores in April 2012. For more information, please visit http://isabelcooper.wordpress.com.







The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  Two commenters will win a copy of No Proper Lady from Sourcebooks. US and Canadian mailing addresses only.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

If you were time traveling to the past, what is the one thing 
you would absolutely want to bring with you? 

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)  Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)  Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)  Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans with a US or Canadian mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Monday, October 3, 2011. Void where prohibited by law. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors

2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors

Here are the September debut authors and their novels (in alphabetical order). Pick one or more and let us know in the comments which one(s) you'll be reading. If I've missed any, let me know in the comments.

This month I simply can't pick one. I'm going to read all of them!

Those Across the River
Author: Christopher Buehlman
Format: Hardcover, 368 pages
Publisher: Ace (September 6, 2011)
Price: $24.95
Language: English
Genre: Horror
ISBN: 9780441020676
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
Failed academic Frank Nichols and his wife, Eudora, have arrived in the sleepy Georgia town of Whitbrow, where Frank hopes to write a history of his family's old estate-the Savoyard Plantation- and the horrors that occurred there. At first, the quaint, rural ways of their new neighbors seem to be everything they wanted. But there is an unspoken dread that the townsfolk have lived with for generations. A presence that demands sacrifice.

It comes from the shadowy woods across the river, where the ruins of Savoyard still stand. Where a longstanding debt of blood has never been forgotten.

A debt that has been waiting patiently for Frank Nichols's homecoming...

No Proper Lady
Author: Isabel Cooper
Series:
Format: Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks (September 1, 2011)
Price: $6.99
Language: English
Genre:  Historical Fantasy Romance/ Time Travel Romance
ISBN:  9781402259524
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
It’s Terminator meets My Fair Lady in this fascinating debut of black magic and brilliant ball gowns, martial arts, and mysticism.

England, 1888. The trees are green, the birds are singing, and no one has any idea that in a few hundred years, demons will destroy it all. Joan plans to keep it that way. All she has to do is take out the dark magician responsible—before he summons the demons in the first place. But as a rough-around-the-edges assassin from that bleak future, she’ll have to learn how to fit into polite Victorian society to get close to her target.

Simon Grenville has his own reasons for wanting to destroy Alex Reynell. The man used to be his best friend—until his practice of the dark arts almost killed Simon’s sister. The beautiful half-naked stranger Simon meets in the woods may be the perfect instrument for his revenge. It will just take a little time to teach her the necessary etiquette and assemble a proper wardrobe. But as each day passes, Simon is less sure he wants Joan anywhere near Reynell. Because no spell in the world will save his future if she isn’t in it.

The Savage Knight
Author:  Paul Lewis
Series:  Malory's Knights of Albion
Format:  Trade Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher:  Abaddon (September 13, 2011)
Price:  $9.99
Language:  English
Genre:  Historical Fantasy / Arthurian Legend
ISBN:  9781907992346
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
Sir Dodinal the Savage is more at home in the wild forest than in the tilting yard or the banquet hall. Keenly attuned to the natural world, but burdened with a terrible rage, he turns his back on Camelot to find peace, or a just death.

In a quiet village on the Welsh border, Dodinal believes he may have finally found a home, but the village is struck by child-stealing raiders from the hills, and he must take up arms once again in his new friends' aid. His quest will take him into the belly of darkness, as the terrible secret hidden in the hills comes to light...

Stone Cold Seduction
Author:  Jess Macallan
Series:  Set in Stone
Format: Trade Paperback, 256 pages
Publisher:  Entangled Publishing (September 6, 2011)
Price:  $14.99
Language:  English
Genre:  Urban Fantasy Romance
ISBN: 978-1-937044-25-1
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
“Elle. It’s just Elle.”

When a regular night of Robin Hood-ery results in the manifestation of some, um, unusual paranormal abilities, perfume-maker Elleodora Fredricks realizes the normal world she lives in isn’t quite… normal. And neither is she, thanks to her father, king of the shadow elves. Not only is he evil incarnate and the reason Elle moonlights as a burglar—someone has to take care of all his victims—he’s stolen her memories.

And only reading her fate can fix that.

Good thing she’s got a trio of hotties willing to help her find said fate. Saving her oracle BFF’s fiancée, falling in love with the gargoyle, and making up for breaking the phoenix’s heart ought to be a piece of cake for the princess of the shadow elves.

If only the king didn’t want his daughter dead…

The Night Circus
Author:  Erin Morgenstern
Format: Hardcover, 400 pages
Publisher:  Doubleday (Septemeber 13, 2011)
Price:  $26.95
Language:  English
Genre:  Fantasy
ISBN: 978-0-385-53463-5
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

Sins of the Angels
Author:  Linda Poitevin
Series:  The Grigori Legacy
Format:  Mass Market Paperback, 336 pages
Publisher:  Ace (September 27, 2011)
Price:  $7.99
Language:  English
Genre:  Urban Fantasy
ISBN: 978044102091
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
When homicide detective Alexandra Jarvis is assigned a new partner in Aramael, a Guardian Angel who doubles as a hit man, they have only one thing in common: a fallen angel hell-bent on triggering the apocalypse. Now they have no choice but to work together-relentlessly, fearlessly, intimately. Because only they can stop the rogue angel from ushering in the end of days.

The Panama Laugh
Author:  Thomas S. Roche
Format:  Trade Paperback, 300 pages
Publisher:  Night Shade Books (September 6, 2011)
Price:  $14.99
Language:  English
Genre:  Science Fiction/Apocalyptic
ISBN:  978-1-59780-290-1
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
Ex-mercenary, pirate, and gun-runner Dante Bogart knows he's screwed the pooch after he hands one of his shady employers a biological weapon that made the dead rise from their graves, laugh like hyenas, and feast upon the living. Dante tried to blow the whistle via a tell-all video that went viral -- but that was before the black ops boys deep-sixed him at a secret interrogation site on the Panama-Colombia border.

When Dante wakes up in the jungle with the five intervening years missing from his memory, he knows he's got to do something about the laughing sickness that has caused a world-wide slaughter. The resulting journey leads him across the nightmare that was the Panama Canal, around Cape Horn in a hijacked nuclear warship, to San Francisco's mission district, where a crew of survivalist hackers have holed up in the pseudo-Moorish-castle turned porn-studio known as The Armory.

This mixed band of anti-social rejects has taken Dante's whistle blowing video as an underground gospel, leading the fight against the laughing corpses and the corporate stooges who've tried to profit from the slaughter. Can Dante find redemption and save civilization?

Shadow Kin
Author:  M. J. Scott
Series:  Half-Light City
Format:  Mass Market Paperback, 336 pages
Publisher:  Roc (September 6, 2011)
Price:  $7.99
Language:  English
Genre:  Dark Fantasy / Paranormal Romance
ISBN:  9780451464040
2011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors
On one side, the Night World, rules by the Blood Lords and the Beast Kind. On the other, the elusive Fae and the humans, protected by their steadfast mages...

Born a wraith, Lily is a shadow who slips between worlds. Brought up by a Blood Lord and raised to be his assassin, she is little more than a slave. But when Lily meets her match in target Simon DuCaine, the unlikely bond that develops between them threatens to disrupt an already stretched peace in a city on the verge of being torn apart...

2011 Debut Author Challenge Update - August 27, 2011

The Qwillery is pleased to announce that Isabel Cooper has joined the 2011 Debut Author Challenge. Isabel's debut, No Proper Lady, will be published on September 1, 2011 by Sourcebooks.

2011 Debut Author Challenge Update - August 27, 2011
It’s Terminator meets My Fair Lady in this fascinating debut of black magic and brilliant ball gowns, martial arts, and mysticism.

England, 1888. The trees are green, the birds are singing, and no one has any idea that in a few hundred years, demons will destroy it all. Joan plans to keep it that way. All she has to do is take out the dark magician responsible—before he summons the demons in the first place. But as a rough-around-the-edges assassin from that bleak future, she’ll have to learn how to fit into polite Victorian society to get close to her target.

Simon Grenville has his own reasons for wanting to destroy Alex Reynell. The man used to be his best friend—until his practice of the dark arts almost killed Simon’s sister. The beautiful half-naked stranger Simon meets in the woods may be the perfect instrument for his revenge. It will just take a little time to teach her the necessary etiquette and assemble a proper wardrobe. But as each day passes, Simon is less sure he wants Joan anywhere near Reynell. Because no spell in the world will save his future if she isn’t in it.

Look for an interview with Isabel in September.

You can keep up to date on 2011 Debut Author Challenge happenings on the 2011 DAC page.
Winners x 4 - October 8, 2011Interview with Isabel Cooper and Giveway - September 26, 20112011 Debut Author Challenge - September Debut Authors2011 Debut Author Challenge Update - August 27, 2011

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