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Guest Blog by James Walley


Please welcome James Walley to The Qwillery. The Fathom Flies Again, Wink 2, is out now from Ragnarok Publications.



Guest Blog by James Walley




At the weekend, I threw caution to the wind and booked a vacation for later on in the year. The world is a sombre and fragile place at the moment, so I figured that could be tempered by the prospect of incoming shenanigans in the not-too-distant. My destination? Well, that much was set in stone from the moment I stepped off the plane back in Blighty last September, after a week in Orlando. Some more of that, please.

Spending a magical seven days with my other half, scampering around Universal Studios like excited children is something that left an indelible stamp on me. Some people love sun holidays, sand holidays, sangria holidays. Truth be told, I am fairly partial to all of the above, but what I got under the baking Florida sun this September past eclipsed all of that. Fun, and ultimate escapism. As a writer, I spend most of my time creating places to escape to, unlikely, larger than life vistas in which to lose myself even as I build them. This, however, was an opportunity to play in someone else’s sandbox, and they had left all of their toys out for me.

For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure, the two theme parks hold everything from superheroes to wizards, giant robots to dinosaurs, and all so immersive that you catch yourself grinning every other minute, as something else that until now only resided in your mind, in a book, or a silver screen walks up and gives you a high five (No mean feat for a T-Rex). This was what I strive to achieve with the words I put into sentences, something so immersive and joyous, that people would want to explore these realms too, if only in their minds. Obviously this wouldn’t work in some genres, or so I thought until the sun went down.

You see, we chose to visit Universal in September, because that is when the nasties come out to play, after the kiddies have been ushered off home, and the attractions are much more likely to eat you. Halloween Horror Nights, they call it, and it put me in my place with regard to exactly how far escapism can take you.

Sure, I’ve harboured secret fantasies about loading up my boomstick and striding out into the zombie apocalypse to have some good old fashioned hijinks with the undead, who hasn’t? What lay in wait for us as we crept back around a transformed amusement park however, was so much more. Exorcists, serial killers, boogeymen, ghosts, banshees and demonic gingerbread men (Yes, that’s a thing) were around every corner, waiting to scare the snot out of anyone who had been brave enough to stick around.

And it was flipping incredible.

Again, meticulously created and flawlessly executed - We were actually there, being chased, lunged at, generally ooga-booga’d to ‘shriek like a pre-schooler’ levels. I don’t think anyone heard me though.

I don’t know why I was so surprised, having grown up on a diet of horror fiction and being utterly exhilarated by it. People love to be scared, as much as they love to be wonder struck or delighted, even if it is in an environment where you know you’re not really going to be possessed, gutted or otherwise horribly dispatched.

I put a little more of a creepy element into The Fathom Flies Again for that very reason. Even if it does stand beside silliness and folly, it serves as a reminder that we love to be given a poke in the feels, whether they’re comfortable or not so comfortable.

Last September, I’d never felt so connected to the things that I had until then only imagined, and it gave me motivation to go deeper down the rabbit hole, paint on a bigger canvas, and yes, use some darker colours where needed. Perhaps that will have a knock on effect in the, as yet untitled third instalment of the Wink trilogy, which I am working on at the moment. Maybe a second trip this coming September will serve to further stoke the creative fires.

At least then I can pass off charging around like a squealing kid on a sugar high as “Research”.





The Fathom Flies Again
Wink 2
Ragnarok Publications, February 1, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 286 pages

Guest Blog by James Walley
It's time to wake up and smell the carnage. Just as every night gives way to dawn, all dreams yield to the break of day. For Marty, that's kind of a problem. When you've fought killer clowns, sailed the seven skies, and generally laid waste to your own dreamspace, real life can be kind of a drag. At least, until your nightmares crawl through the cracks and shadows, and take a liking to your town.

When the jesters come a knocking, it's time to man up. When the unmentionables under your bed come a biting, it's time to grab your trusty, pint-sized pirate compadre and lead a charge against the night terrors.

What does this mean for Marty? It means the crew of The Flying Fathom are back, surfing on rainbows, swashing their buckles, and saving the world, one sleepy little town at a time.

Book one of this series, The Forty First Wink brought you a glimpse of utter, rum-swilling madness. Now& The Fathom Flies Again, pushing you over the edge and chuckling at your plummeting screams, before scuttling off to find something shiny to steal.

Remember, if you hear something under your bed, don't move. Don't make a sound. Draw your cutlass and think of something devilishly witty to shout, because things, my friend, are about to get all too real.




Previously

The Forty First Wink
Wink 1
Ragnarok Publications, June 16, 2014
Trade Paperback and eBook, 214 pages

Guest Blog by James Walley
Marty is having a bad morning. Roused from slumber by a gang of polo mallet-wielding monkeys and a mysterious voice in his wardrobe, he must quickly come to terms with the fact that the world outside his door is now the world inside his head. Lying in wait amidst bleak, gloomy streets, deserted theme parks, and circus-themed nightclubs, lurks the oppressive shadow of a myriad of giggling, cackling pursuers, hell bent on throwing a custard pie or two into the works.

Assisted by a string of half-cocked schemes, a troupe of tiny unlikely allies, and (literally) the girl of his dreams, Marty sets out on a heroic quest to wake up and get out of bed.

Early reviews have compared it to Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. Equal parts epic, funny and dark, The Forty First Wink plummets headlong into the realms of askew reality, adding elements of the macabre, and squeezing in an unlikely love story for good measure. It will take you on a journey where not even the sky is the limit, and literally anything could be around the next corner. The question is, do you have the guts (and the sanity) to find out?





About James

Guest Blog by James Walley
Hailing from the mystical isle of Great Britain, James Walley is an author who prefers his reality banana shaped.

His debut novel, The Forty First Wink, released through Ragnarok Publications in 2014 scuttles gleefully into this bracket, with a blend of humour, fantasy and the unusual.

A clutch of follow up work, both short and long (including books two and three in the Wink trilogy) are in the offing, and have a similar demented flavour.

When not writing, James is partial to a spot of singing, the odd horror movie or ten, and is a circus trained juggler.

Facebook  ~  Twitter @JamesWalley74  ~ Goodreads

Ragnarok Holiday Grand Tour - Guest Blog by James Walley - December 19, 2014


Please welcome James Walley to The Qwillery as part of the Ragnarok Holiday Grand Tour. The Forty First Wink was published on June 16th by Ragnarok Publications.



Ragnarok Holiday Grand Tour - Guest Blog by James Walley - December 19, 2014




Cutting a long story short.

It seems to be a point of significant discussion amongst authors, that novels and short stories are two very different animals, holding vastly different page turning appeal, and never the twain shall meet. There is of course the obvious difference between your average twelve pager, and the longer haul of a couple of hundred, but the quick fixes seem to often play second fiddle to their weightier brethren.

I can sort of see why, having dabbled in the world of short storytelling off the back of the release of my debut novel, The Forty First Wink. Whilst Wink is by no means a marathon read, it has time to grow into its story and characters. There's much more opportunity to magnify the hero's huzzah-ness, and the villain's naughtiness, whilst also providing a bigger canvas to paint your world upon.

This is what I found most challenging about spinning a yarn with a word limit, although I firmly believe that you can still put a lot into, and get a lot out of a shorter tale. Think of it as a story told around a campfire, it has to be concise enough to hold thrall over the wide eyed faces staring back, but not rattle on until the sun comes up. In a lot of ways, I think that's more exciting, since you have to hit the ground running, and trust in the reader's imagination to be the firework that you've just lit.

With The Forty First Wink, I spent a lot of time building each character. You find out more about them as the story progresses, and as they themselves change. With my short stories, Santa Claus Wants You Dead and Bad Little Boys Go To Hell, the reader is almost a third party observer of their interactions. It's a case of actually getting to know someone versus watching what demented things a bunch intriguing passing acquaintances get up to.

The same principle applies with the setting. In a novel, you can gradually discover the world within the pages, at the same time as, and with the same confusion/fear/awe as the main characters. With shorter stories, the onus is on the reader to accept that there's stuff going down, and run with it. 'OK, we're in Lapland with a bunch of drunk elves, and Santa's off on a murder spree.' Y'know, just for example.

There are positives to be taken from each journey. You're on a long haul road trip with a gang of rum swilling toy pirates, checking out the theme parks and pogo-ing clown cars along the way, or you're drag racing up a two mile stretch of road, with a demonic Father Christmas as your co-pilot, and a huge ramp at the end that you should probably not try at home, kids.

I had a huge amount of fun writing The Forty First Wink, because I almost felt like part of the crew by the end, laughing in the face of shenanigans, and pitching ice cream out of speeding vans at clowns. I also had a lot of fun writing short stories, in a sort of 'Yep, this is happening, and it's happening right now' sort of way. I certainly feel that the latter of the two is just as pertinent, even if you don't get to stay for lunch.

Of course, novels do look a lot nicer on your bookshelf, but that's a discussion for another time.





The Forty First Wink
Ragnarok Publications, June 16, 2014
Trade Paperback and eBook, 214 pages

Ragnarok Holiday Grand Tour - Guest Blog by James Walley - December 19, 2014
Marty is having a bad morning. Roused from slumber by a gang of polo mallet-wielding monkeys and a mysterious voice in his wardrobe, he must quickly come to terms with the fact that the world outside his door is now the world inside his head. Lying in wait amidst bleak, gloomy streets, deserted theme parks, and circus-themed nightclubs, lurks the oppressive shadow of a myriad of giggling, cackling pursuers, hell bent on throwing a custard pie or two into the works.

Assisted by a string of half-cocked schemes, a troupe of tiny unlikely allies, and (literally) the girl of his dreams, Marty sets out on a heroic quest to wake up and get out of bed.

Early reviews have compared it to Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. Equal parts epic, funny and dark, The Forty First Wink plummets headlong into the realms of askew reality, adding elements of the macabre, and squeezing in an unlikely love story for good measure. It will take you on a journey where not even the sky is the limit, and literally anything could be around the next corner. The question is, do you have the guts (and the sanity) to find out?





About James

Ragnarok Holiday Grand Tour - Guest Blog by James Walley - December 19, 2014
Arriving in the rainy isle of Great Britain in the late '70s, James quickly became an enthusiast of all things askew. Whilst growing up in a quaint little one horse town that was one horse short, a steady diet of movies, '50s sci fi and fantasy fiction finally convinced him to up sticks and move to Narnia — also known to the layman as Wales. Since there was no available qualification in talking lion taming or ice sculpture, he settled for a much more humdrum degree in something vague but practical, and set out to find a talking lion to make an ice sculpture of.

Mystifyingly finding himself behind the desk of a nine to five job, he kept himself sane by singing in a rock band, memorizing every John Carpenter movie ever made, and learning the ancient art of voodoo. Finally deciding to put his hyperactive imagination to good use, he ditched the voodoo and picked up a pen. A few months later, his debut novel, The Forty First Wink, was born. With a clutch of short stories in the offing, James is now loving his new life as an author, and still sings when plied with alcohol or compliments.

He also recently developed a penchant for fiercely embellishing his past. He really was a singer, although The Forty First Wink may not have brought about world peace. Yet.

Facebook  ~  Twitter @JamesWalley74  ~ Goodreads


2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Winner


The winner of the June 2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars is The Forty First Wink by James Walley with 80% of the votes! The Forty First Wink was published by Ragnarok Publications.



2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Winner





The Final Results

2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Winner





The June 2014 Debut Covers

2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Winner





Thank you to everyone who voted, Tweeted, and participated. The 2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will continue with voting on the July Debut covers starting on July 15, 2014. Look for the list of July's Debuts on July 1st.


Interview with James Walley, author of The Forty First Wink - June 20, 2014


Please welcome James Walley to The Qwillery as part of the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. The Forty First Wink was published by Ragnarok Publications on June 16th.



Interview with James Walley, author of The Forty First Wink - June 20, 2014




TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery. When and why did you start writing fiction?

James:  Thank you for having me. I've always wanted to write, 18 months ago I got to a point where I told myself to stop procrastinating and take the plunge. Since then, I can't stop, it's addictive.



TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

James:  Whilst I consider myself to be very much a pantser, I don't think that the two are mutually exclusive. I love the freedom to let the story play out like a movie in my head, but also like to have a few waypoints marked out in the plot. It's like planning a trip, and highlighting a bunch of places you want to visit along the way, then just getting in your car, closing your eyes and putting your foot down. It's probably not a good idea to literally do that though.



TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

James:  Keeping my preference for certain characters in check. I outright love some of the characters in 'Wink', and it's hard not to focus too much on them. I want to give all my characters an equal amount of limelight, but it's difficult sometimes when you just want to write pages and pages about a crazy, fun character that you've just dreamed up.



TQ:  Who are some of your literary influences? Favorite authors?

James:  I am a huge Douglas Adams fan, anything Hitchhiker related that he wrote has had the print read off it and sits proudly on my bookshelves. In terms of genre, I enjoy how authors like Terry Pratchett and Robert Rankin take fantasy, make it even more fantastic, and put a comedic spin upon it. Basically, how fantasy would sound if it were narrated by a demented, talking ostrich.



TQ:  Describe The Forty First Wink in 140 characters or less.

James:  Epic tale of boy dreams world. Pursued by his nightmares and aided by cheeky, pint sized pirates. And that's only scratching the surface!



TQ:  Tell us something about The Forty First Wink that is not in the book description.

James:  I love it when a chapter ends on a good cliffhanger, so prepare yourself to think "Just one more chapter" a few times. At least I hope that's what you'll be thinking!



TQThe Forty First Wink seems to be a genre blending novel. How would you describe the genres in your novel?

James:  It's a bit of a melting pot. It's based heavily in fantasy of course, but has a lot of humour too. There are dark, almost horror flavours, as well as a nod to nostalgia, and childhood innocence. There's even a quirky love story thrown in. If you're going to genre blend, why not use everything in the cupboard?



TQ:  What sorts of research did you do for The Forty First Wink?

James:  I napped a lot, which seemed to help with the dream stuff. Other than that, I researched a lot of nautical, and specifically pirate terminology. Also, there is a mystery character who's dialogue required that I read up on a lot of very specific, and very random information. That sounds very cryptic, and that's exactly what I was going for with the character.



TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

James:  Timbers and Oaf were the easiest to write, simply because there were a joy to create. They embody a carefree and mischievous innocence that most of us lose when we are saddled with adulthood. I could go on and on about them both, simply because they are so much fun.

The hardest was probably Mr Peepers, the main antagonist. I wanted to ensure that he was steeped in mystery, whilst also conveying a malevolence and very real fear factor. That was a bit of a juggling act, but I think that he comes across as suitably creepy.



TQ:  Give us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery lines from The Forty First Wink.

James:
"The demonic clown was suddenly upon them, close enough to shock Marty into losing his grip on the ladder, retaining some purchase with one hand. Wheeling around, he was now face to face with Mr Peepers, who craned closer, his grin now impossibly wide and his eyes even wider. Marty winced as he caught a face full of hot clown breath.
It smelled like candyfloss, he thought. Candyfloss and terror."

"The short corridor which led to the gift shop now felt impossibly long, and seemed to stretch out still further as they charged headlong away from their pursuers. Surprisingly keeping pace with his much taller companions, Timbers drew alongside Marty. "Hey!" the little pirate chirped, in a voice that carried a flippant tone that in no way fit their current fraught situation. "Wouldn't it be awful if one of us fell over now, like you see in movies?" Marty's already whirling mind started a new spin cycle, and he just barely managed an incredulous double take at the tiny scuttling buccaneer before the distraction nearly caused him to fall over, like you see in movies."


TQ:  What's next?

James:  Hopefully a lot. I have a short story entitled "Santa Claus Wants You Dead" coming out in an anthology from Fireside Press later in the year, and I am currently working on a sci fi, post apocalyptic novella called "The Late Outdoors". Both are very much in the same crazy, fun vein as 'Wink'. Of course, I am also raring to go on the second 'Wink' novel, which is already partly storyboarded, and will be part of an eventual trilogy.



TQ:  Is a nod as good as a wink to a blind bat?

James:  Only if it goes with a nudge, nudge. Know what I mean?



TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

James:  You're most welcome, it's been fun!





James Walley

The Forty First Wink
Ragnarok Publications, June 16, 2014
Trade Paperback and eBook, 214 pages

Interview with James Walley, author of The Forty First Wink - June 20, 2014
Marty is having a bad morning. Roused from slumber by a gang of polo mallet-wielding monkeys and a mysterious voice in his wardrobe, he must quickly come to terms with the fact that the world outside his door is now the world inside his head. Lying in wait amidst bleak, gloomy streets, deserted theme parks, and circus-themed nightclubs, lurks the oppressive shadow of a myriad of giggling, cackling pursuers, hell bent on throwing a custard pie or two into the works.

Assisted by a string of half-cocked schemes, a troupe of tiny unlikely allies, and (literally) the girl of his dreams, Marty sets out on a heroic quest to wake up and get out of bed.

Early reviews have compared it to Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. Equal parts epic, funny and dark, The Forty First Wink plummets headlong into the realms of askew reality, adding elements of the macabre, and squeezing in an unlikely love story for good measure. It will take you on a journey where not even the sky is the limit, and literally anything could be around the next corner. The question is, do you have the guts (and the sanity) to find out?





About James

Interview with James Walley, author of The Forty First Wink - June 20, 2014
Arriving in the rainy isle of Great Britain in the late '70s, James quickly became an enthusiast of all things askew. Whilst growing up in a quaint little one horse town that was one horse short, a steady diet of movies, '50s sci fi and fantasy fiction finally convinced him to up sticks and move to Narnia — also known to the layman as Wales. Since there was no available qualification in talking lion taming or ice sculpture, he settled for a much more humdrum degree in something vague but practical, and set out to find a talking lion to make an ice sculpture of.

Mystifyingly finding himself behind the desk of a nine to five job, he kept himself sane by singing in a rock band, memorizing every John Carpenter movie ever made, and learning the ancient art of voodoo. Finally deciding to put his hyperactive imagination to good use, he ditched the voodoo and picked up a pen. A few months later, his debut novel, The Forty First Wink, was born. With a clutch of short stories in the offing, James is now loving his new life as an author, and still sings when plied with alcohol or compliments.

He also recently developed a penchant for fiercely embellishing his past. He really was a singer, although The Forty First Wink may not have brought about world peace. Yet.

Facebook  ~  Twitter @JamesWalley74  ~ Goodreads


The View From Monday - June 16, 2014


Happy Monday! I'm reading Shield and Crocus by Michael R. Underwood and California Bones by Greg van Eekhout. Oddly both books feature bones. In Shield and Crocus, the city of Audec-Hal sits in the bones of a Titan. In California Bones, bones are eaten to provide magic to the person who eats the bones. (I'll explain that in the review.)


The View From Monday - June 16, 2014


There are three debuts this week:

Flight of the Golden Harpy by Susan Klaus;

The Quick by Lauren Owen;

and

The Forty First Wink by James Walley;


And from formerly featured Debut Author Challenge authors:

Shattered (Iron Druid Chronicles 7) by Kevin Hearne;

and

Spell or High Water (Magic 2.0, 2) by Scott Meyer.




June 16, 2014
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
The Line Book One: Carrier (e) Anne Tibbets PNR - The Line 1
The Forty First Wink (D) James Walley F



June 17, 2014
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
The God Particle Tom Avitabile Sus
Cibola Burn James S.A. Corey SF - The Expanse 4
The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains: A Tale of Travel and Darkness with Pictures of All Kinds Neil Gaiman F
Head Full of Mountains Brent Hayward H
Shattered Kevin Hearne UF - Iron Druid Chronicles 7
Orion: The Council of Beasts Darius Hinks F - Warhammer: Orion 3
Alchymist (e) Ian Irvine F - Well of Echoes Quartet 3
Chimaera (e) Ian Irvine F - Well of Echoes Quartet 4
The Curse of the Chosen (e) Ian Irvine F - Song of the Tears Trilogy 2
The Destiny of the Dead (e) Ian Irvine F - Song of the Tears Trilogy 3
The Fate of the Fallen (e) Ian Irvine F - Song of the Tears Trilogy 1
Geomancer (e) Ian Irvine F - Well of Echoes Quartet 1
Tetrarch (e) Ian Irvine F - Well of Echoes Quartet 2
Irregular Verbs and Other Stories Matthew Johnson SF/F - Collection
Flight of the Golden Harpy (D) Susan Klaus F
Dawn Song (ri) Michael Marano DF
Rogues George R.R. Martin (ed)
Gardner Dozois (ed)
F - Anthology
Spell or High Water Scott Meyer F - Magic 2.0, 2
The Quick (D) Lauren Owen Go
The Funeral, Ruined: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
Octavia E. Butler: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
John Wayne: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
theleeharveyoswaldband: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
Johnny Cash: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
There Is Something So Quiet and Empty Inside of You That It Must Be Precious: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
Under the Red Sun: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
Possession: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
The Dreaming City: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
The Souls of Dead Soldiers are for Blackbirds, Not Little Boys: Short Story (e) Ben Peek Sur
Chasers of the Wind Alexey Pehov F - The Cycle of Wind and Sparks 1
Chernobyl (ri) Frederik Pohl Th
The Long Mars Terry Pratchett
Stephen Baxter
SF - Long Earth 3
Heirs of Grace Tim Pratt UF
Copper Ravens Jennifer Allis Provost PNR - Copper Legacy 2
The White Towers Andy Remic F - The Rage of Kings 2
The Wolves of Midwinter (h2tp) Anne Rice F/P - Wolf Gift Chronicles
A Better World Marcus Sakey Th/F - The Brilliance Saga 2
Temptation in Shadows (e) Gena Showalter PNR
Two Fronts (h2tp) Harry Turtledove AH - The War That Came Early 5



June 18, 2014
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Science Fiction, Alien Encounters, and the Ethics of Posthumanism: Beyond the Golden Rule Elana Gomel HC
All Together Dead (TV Tie-In) Charlaine Harris UF - Sookie Stackhouse 7
The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2014 Edition Rich Horton (ed) F/SF - Anthology
Combustion Hour: A Tor.Com Original (e) Yoon Ha Lee SF


D - Debut
e - eBook
ed - Editor
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
ri - reissue or reprint


AH - Alternate History
DF - Dark Fantasy
F - Fantasy
Go - Gothic
H - Horror
HC - History and Criticism
PNR - Paranormal Romance
SF - Science Fiction
Sur - Surreal
Sus - Suspense
Th - Thriller
UF - Urban Fantasy

2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts


It's time for the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars for June 2014


2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts


Each month you will be able to vote for your favorite cover from that month's debut novels. At the end of the year the 12 monthly winners will be pitted against each other to choose the 2014 Debut Novel Cover of the Year. Please note that a debut novel cover is eligible in the month in which the novel is released in the US. Cover artist/illustrator information is provided when we have it.

I'm using PollCode for this vote. After you the check the circle next to your favorite, click "Vote" to record your vote. If you'd like to see the real-time results click "View". This will take you to the PollCode site where you may see the results. If you want to come back to The Qwillery click "Back" and you will return to this page. Voting will end sometime on June 24, 2014.



Vote for your favorite June 2014 Debut Cover
  
pollcode.com free polls 




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts




2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts



2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts



2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts

There are 7 debuts (that I know about) for June. Please note that we use the publisher's publication date in the United States, not copyright dates or non-US publication dates.

The June debut authors and their novels are listed in alphabetical order by author (not book title or publication date). Take a good look at the covers. Voting for your favorite June cover for the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will take place starting on June 15th.

If you are participating as a reader in the Challenge, please let us know in the comments what you are thinking of reading or email us at DAC.TheQwillery  @  gmail . com (remove the spaces).




Katherine Harbour

Thorn Jack: A Night and Nothing Novel
Thorn Jack Trilogy 1
Harper Voyager, June 24, 2014
Hardcover and eBook,  352 pages

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
A spectacular, modern retelling of the ancient Scottish ballad of Tam Lin—a beguiling fusion of love, fantasy, and myth vividly imagined and steeped in gothic atmosphere.

Their creed is "Mischief, Malevolence, and Mayhem."

Serafina Sullivan, named for angels and a brave Irish prince, is haunted by dreams of her older sister, Lily Rose, a sprite, ethereal beauty who unexpectedly took her own life. A year has passed since Lily's death, and now eighteen-year-old Finn and her college-professor father have moved back to Fair Hollow, her father's pretty little hometown alongside the Hudson River. Populated with socialites, hippies, and famous dramatic artists, every corner of this quaint, bohemian community holds bright possibilities—and dark enigmas, including the alluring Jack Fata, scion of the town's most powerful family.

Jack's smoldering looks and air of secrecy draw Finn into a dangerous romance . . . and plunge her into an eerie world of shadow and light ruled by the beautiful and fearsome Reiko Fata. Exciting and monstrous, the Fata family and its circle of strange, aristocratic denizens wield irresistible charm and glamorous power— a tempting and terrifying blend of good and evil, magic and mystery, that holds perilous consequences for a curious girl like Finn.

As she becomes more deeply entwined with Jack, Finn discovers that their lives and those of the ones she loves, including her best friends Christie Hart and Sylvie Whitethorn, are in peril. But an unexpected ally may help her protect them: her beloved sister, Lily Rose. Within the pages of the journal that Lily left behind are clues Finn must decipher to unlock the secret of the Fatas.
Yet the wrathful and deadly Reiko has diabolical plans of her own for Finn, as well as powerful allies. To save herself and to free her beloved Jack from the Fatas, Finn must stand up against the head of the family and her clever minions, including the vicious, frightening Caliban—a battle that will reveal shocking secrets about Lily Rose's death and about Finn herself . . .

Evocative and spellbinding, rich with legend, myth, and folklore, filled with heroes and villains, ghosts and selkies, changelings and fairies, witches and demons, Thorn Jack is a modern fairy tale and a story of true love, set in a familiar world, where nothing is as it seems.




Emmi Itäranta

Memory of Water
Harper Voyager, June 10, 2014
Trade Paperback and eBook,  272 pages

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
The award-winning speculative debut novel, now in English for the first time!

In the far north of the Scandinavian Union, now occupied by the power state of New Qian, seventeen-year-old Noria Kaitio studies to become a tea master like her father. It is a position that holds great responsibility and a dangerous secret. Tea masters alone know the location of hidden water sources, including the natural spring that once provided water for her whole village. When Noria's father dies, the secret of the spring reaches the new military commander . . . and the power of the army is vast indeed. But the precious water reserve is not the only forbidden knowledge Noria possesses, and resistance is a fine line.

Threatened with imprisonment, and with her life at stake, Noria must make an excruciating, dangerous choice between knowledge and freedom.




Susan Klaus

Flight of the Golden Harpy
Tor Books, June 17, 2014
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
Kari, a young woman, returns to the jungle planet of Dora after ten years in Earth’s schools determined to unravel the mysteries surrounding the harpies, a feral species with the appearance half-bird, half-human.

The human colonists believe harpies are dangerous animals, which are known to steal women. The creatures are hunted like wild game, their wings considered rare trophies. But Kari distrusts these rumors. When she was attacked by a monster in the jungle as a child, a male harpy with rare golden coloring rescued her.

Constant hunting by men has driven the harpies to the brink of extinction. Is Kari’s savior, the elegant golden harpy, is still alive? If so, how long can he and his flock survive the ravages of mankind?

Susan Klaus's Flight of the Golden Harpy is an imaginative and romantic fantasy novel that questions what it means to be human.




Lauren Owen

The Quick
Random House, June 17, 2014
Hardcover and eBook, 544 pages

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
For fans of Anne Rice, The Historian, and The Night Circus, an astonishing debut, a novel of epic scope and suspense that conjures up all the magic and menace of Victorian London

1892: James Norbury, a shy would-be poet newly down from Oxford, finds lodging with a charming young aristocrat. Through this new friendship, he is introduced to the drawing-rooms of high society and finds love in an unexpected quarter. Then, suddenly, he vanishes without a trace. Alarmed, his sister, Charlotte, sets out from their crumbling country estate determined to find him. In the sinister, labyrinthine London that greets her, she uncovers a hidden, supernatural city populated by unforgettable characters: a female rope walker turned vigilante, a street urchin with a deadly secret, and the chilling “Doctor Knife.” But the answer to her brother’s disappearance ultimately lies within the doors of the exclusive, secretive Aegolius Club, whose predatory members include the most ambitious, and most bloodthirsty, men in England.

In her first novel, Lauren Owen has created a fantastical world that is both beguiling and terrifying. The Quick will establish her as one of fiction’s most dazzling talents.




Kieran Shea

Koko Takes a Holiday
Titan Books, June 10, 2014
Trade Paperback and eBook, 400 pages

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
Five hundred years from now, ex-corporate mercenary Koko Martstellar is swaggering through an early retirement as a brothel owner on The Sixty Islands, a manufactured tropical resort archipelago known for its sex and simulated violence. Surrounded by slang-drooling boywhores and synthetic komodo dragons, the most challenging part of Koko’s day is deciding on her next drink. That is, until her old comrade Portia Delacompte sends a squad of security personnel to murder her.




Auralee Wallace

Sidekick
Escape Publishing, June 1, 2014
eBook, 249 pages

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
Heroes meets Bridget Jones in this brilliant, hilarious debut novel about a girl who just wants to save the world...

Bremy St James, daughter of billionaire Atticus St James, has been cut off from the family fortune and is struggling to survive in a world that no longer holds its breath every time she buys a new outfit. To make matters worse, her twin sister is keeping secrets, loan sharks are circling, and the man of her dreams — a newspaper reporter — is on assignment to bring down everyone with the last name St James.

Things are certainly looking bleak for the down-and-out socialite until a good deed throws her into the path of the city’s top crime-fighter, Dark Ryder. Suddenly, Bremy has a new goal: apprentice to a superhero, and start her own crime-fighting career.

Ryder has no need for a sidekick, but it turns out the city needs Bremy’s help. Atticus St James is planning the crime of the century, and Bremy may be the only one able to get close enough to her father to stop him.

Now all she needs to do is figure out this superhero thing in less than a month, keep her identity secret from the man who could very well be The One, and save the city from total annihilation.

Well, no one ever said being a superhero would be easy...




James Walley

The Forty First Wink
Ragnarok Publications, June 16, 2014
eBook

2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts
Marty is having a bad morning. Roused from slumber by a gang of polo mallet-wielding monkeys and a mysterious voice in his wardrobe, he must quickly come to terms with the fact that the world outside his door is now the world inside his head. Lying in wait amidst bleak, gloomy streets, deserted theme parks, and circus-themed nightclubs, lurks the oppressive shadow of a myriad of giggling, cackling pursuers, hell bent on throwing a custard pie or two into the works.

Assisted by a string of half-cocked schemes, a troupe of tiny unlikely allies, and (literally) the girl of his dreams, Marty sets out on a heroic quest to wake up and get out of bed.

Early reviews have compared it to Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. Equal parts epic, funny and dark, The Forty First Wink plummets headlong into the realms of askew reality, adding elements of the macabre, and squeezing in an unlikely love story for good measure. It will take you on a journey where not even the sky is the limit, and literally anything could be around the next corner. The question is, do you have the guts (and the sanity) to find out?

Guest Blog by James WalleyRagnarok Holiday Grand Tour - Guest Blog by James Walley - December 19, 20142014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 WinnerInterview with James Walley, author of The Forty First Wink - June 20, 2014The View From Monday - June 16, 20142014 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2014 Debuts2014 Debut Author Challenge - June 2014 Debuts

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