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Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!


Would you like to win a Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit from Penguin Random House?

Go here to enter: https://sweeps.penguinrandomhouse.com/enter/fantasy-romance-starter-kit-giveaway

The winner will win the following six first-in-series books!

Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!

20 runners-up will receive an advance reading copy of Phoenix Unbound by Grace Draven!

Open to US residents, 18 and older. Hurry and enter! The giveaway ends on September 19, 2018!




Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!
PHOENIX UNBOUND by Grace Draven
A woman with power over fire and illusion and an enslaved son of a chieftain battle a corrupt empire in this powerful and deeply emotional romantic fantasy from the USA Today bestselling author of Radiance.


Phoenix Unbound
The Fallen Empire 1
Ace, September 25, 2018
Trade Paperback and eBook, 400 pages

A woman with power over fire and illusion and an enslaved son of a chieftain battle a corrupt empire in this powerful and deeply emotional romantic fantasy from the USA Today bestselling author of Radiance.

Every year, each village is required to send a young woman to the Empire’s capital–her fate to be burned alive for the entertainment of the masses. For the last five years, one small village’s tithe has been the same woman. Gilene’s sacrifice protects all the other young women of her village, and her secret to staying alive lies with the magic only she possesses.

But this year is different.

Azarion, the Empire’s most famous gladiator, has somehow seen through her illusion–and is set on blackmailing Gilene into using her abilities to help him escape his life of slavery. Unknown to Gilene, he also wants to reclaim the birthright of his clan.

To protect her family and village, she will abandon everything to return to the Empire–and burn once more.


Look for Melanie's review of Phoenix Unbound later this month!




Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!
MAGIC BITES by Ilona Andrews
Ilona Andrews invites you to experience the first novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling series featuring the intriguing fantasy world of mercenary Kate Daniels…


Magic Bites
A Kate Daniels Novel 1
Ace, December 31, 2012
Trade Paperback and eBook, 384 pages

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews invites you to experience the first novel in the “intriguing world” (Locus) of Kate Daniels with this special edition of Magic Bites

Kate Daniels is a down-on-her-luck mercenary who makes her living cleaning up magical problems. But when Kate’s guardian is murdered, her quest for justice draws her into a power struggle between two strong factions within Atlanta’s magic circles. Pressured by both sides to find the killer, Kate realizes she’s way out of her league—but she wouldn’t want it any other way…

This special edition includes in-depth information about the world of Kate Daniels, with descriptions of its characters and factions. Explore Kate’s Atlanta like never before with answers to FAQ and a quiz to find your place there. And don’t miss the prequel story “A Questionable Client,” as well as scenes of events in Magic Bites from Curran’s point of view.




Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!
WRITTEN IN RED by Anne Bishop
Enter the world of the Others in the first novel in New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop’s thrilling fantasy series: a place where unearthly entities—vampires and shape-shifters among them—rule the Earth and prey on the human race.


Written in Red
A Novel of the Others 1
Roc, March 04, 2014
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 512 pages

Enter the world of the Others in the first novel in New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop’s thrilling fantasy series: a place where unearthly entities—vampires and shape-shifters among them—rule the Earth and prey on the human race.
As a cassandra sangue, or blood prophet, Meg Corbyn can see the future when her skin is cut—a gift that feels more like a curse. Meg’s Controller keeps her enslaved so he can have full access to her visions. But when she escapes, the only safe place Meg can hide is at the Lakeside Courtyard—a business district operated by the Others.

Shape-shifter Simon Wolfgard is reluctant to hire the stranger who inquires about the Human Liaison job. First, he senses she’s keeping a secret, and second, she doesn’t smell like human prey. Yet a stronger instinct propels him to give Meg the job. And when he learns the truth about Meg and that she’s wanted by the government, he’ll have to decide if she’s worth the fight between humans and the Others that will surely follow.




Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!
CRY WOLF by Patricia Briggs
#1 New York Times bestselling author Patricia Briggs presents the first Alpha and Omega novel—the start of an extraordinary series set in Mercy Thompson’s world, but with rules of its own…


Cry Wolf
Alpha and Omega 1
Ace, July 29, 2008
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

#1 New York Times bestselling author Patricia Briggs presents the first Alpha and Omega novel—the start of an extraordinary series set in Mercy Thompson’s world, but with rules of its own…

Anna never knew werewolves existed until the night she survived a violent attack…and became one herself. After three years at the bottom of the pack, she’d learned to keep her head down and never, ever trust dominant males. But Anna is that rarest kind of werewolf: an Omega. And one of the most powerful werewolves in the country is about to recognize her value as a pack member—and as his mate.




Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!
WILD HUNGER by Chloe Neill
In the first thrilling installment of Chloe Neill’s spinoff to the New York Times bestselling Chicagoland Vampires series, a new vampire will find out just how deep blood ties run.


Wild Hunger
An Heirs of Chicagoland Novel 1
Berkley, August 14, 2018
Trade Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

In the first thrilling installment of Chloe Neill’s spinoff to the New York Times bestselling Chicagoland Vampires series, a new vampire will find out just how deep blood ties run.

As the only vampire child ever born, some believed Elisa Sullivan had all the luck. But the magic that helped bring her into the world left her with a dark secret. Shifter Connor Keene, the only son of North American Central Pack Apex Gabriel Keene, is the only one she trusts with it. But she’s a vampire and the daughter of a Master and a Sentinel, and he’s prince of the Pack and its future king.

When the assassination of a diplomat brings old feuds to the fore again, Elisa and Connor must choose between love and family, between honor and obligation, before Chicago disappears forever.




Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!
SLAVE TO SENSATION by Nalini Singh
THE FIRST PSY/CHANGELING NOVEL from the New York Times bestselling author of Shards of Hope, Shield of Winter, and Heart of Obsidian

The book that Christine Feehan called “a must-read for all of my fans.”


Slave to Sensation
Psy-Changling 1
Berkley, September 5, 2006
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

THE FIRST PSY/CHANGELING NOVEL from the New York Times bestselling author of Shards of Hope, Shield of Winter, and Heart of Obsidian…

The book that Christine Feehan called “a must-read for all of my fans.”

In a world that denies emotions, where the ruling Psy punish any sign of desire, Sascha Duncan must conceal the feelings that brand her as flawed. To reveal them would be to sentence herself to the horror of “rehabilitation”—the complete psychic erasure of everything she ever was…Both human and animal, Lucas Hunter is a Changeling hungry for the very sensations the Psy disdain. After centuries of uneasy coexistence, these two races are now on the verge of war over the brutal murders of several Changeling women. Lucas is determined to find the Psy killer who butchered his packmate, and Sascha is his ticket into their closely guarded society. But he soon discovers that this ice-cold Psy is very capable of passion—and that the animal in him is fascinated by her. Caught between their conflicting worlds, Lucas and Sascha must remain bound to their identities—or sacrifice everything for a taste of darkest temptation…

Review and Giveaway: The Night Dahlia by R.S. Belcher


The Night Dahlia
Author:  R.S. Belcher
Series:  Nightwise 2
Publisher:  Tor Books, April 3, 2018
Format:  Trade Paperback and eBook, 400 pages
List Price:  US$18.99 (print); US$9.99 (eBook)
ISBN:  9780765390127 (print); 9780765390141 (eBook)

Review and Giveaway: The Night Dahlia by R.S. Belcher
Laytham Ballard once protected humanity as part of the Nightwise, a secret order of modern-day mages dedicated to holding hellish supernatural forces at bay, but that was before a string of sadistic ritual murders shook everything he believed in—and sent him down a much darker path. One that has already cost him most of his soul, as well as everything he once held dear.

Now a powerful faerie mob boss has hired Ballard to find his lost-lost daughter, who went missing several years ago. The long-cold trail leads him across the globe, from the luxurious playgrounds of the rich and famous to the seedy occult underbelly of Los Angeles, where creatures of myth and legend mingle with street gangs and sex clubs, and where Ballard finds his own guilty past waiting for him around every shadowy corner. To find Caern Ankou, he will have to confront old enemies, former friends and allies, and a grisly cold case that has haunted him for years.

But is Caern still alive? And, perhaps more importantly, does she even want to be found?



Qwill's Thoughts

What can I say about Laytham Ballard, the anti-hero of the Nightwise novels by R.S. Belcher? He has a great capacity to do bad things. He's a powerful wizard, god-like in his strength. He's brilliant, selfish, egotistical, often violent. He's made terrible mistakes. He keeps everyone at arm's length preferring not to let anyone know that he is capable of any tender emotions. He's someone that will do whatever it takes to survive. He knows all of this about himself. And yet, he often does the right thing; often for the wrong reasons. In The Night Dahlia, Belcher dives deeply into Laytham's psyche and past while telling a fantastic story of Laytham's hunt for Lord Ankou's daughter, Caern, who disappeared years ago. He takes the job for selfish reasons - so can he reverse a mistake he made in the past.

The novel is primarily set in Los Angeles, California. Laytham is not welcome in LA. He was expelled from the Nightwise (supernatural police) in L.A. years ago though he claims he quit. He is haunted by a case he could not solve and the love he could not except and had abruptly left. There is a huge trail of hurt and pain Laytham has left behind. He is accompanied on this job by a retainer of Lord Ankou - Vigil Burris. Burris is there to make sure that Laytham does the job.

Belcher introduces a fascinating and wonderfully developed cast of characters from Laytham's past in L.A - Dragon, Anna, Dwayne and his dog Gretchen , and members of the Nightwise. Grinner, who we've met before, returns. Laytham gives us a tour of L.A.'s supernatural community while working to solve the mystery of Caern's disappearance and ditch Vigil Burris whenever he can. There is much dark, seedy and violent in this novel. That's Laytham's world and where he is most comfortable.

The novel moves at an almost breathtaking pace as Laytham tries to find the missing woman. He has a deep and eclectic understanding of magic which makes for some exotic rituals and incredible magical fights.  

The Night Dahlia is wonderfully written. It's a sheer pleasure to read - even the parts that are bloody and rough. This is a deeply layered novel on many levels. The mystery of Caern's disappearance is as tangled and intricate as Laytham himself. He still does things he shouldn't. He still makes bad decisions. However, he has a capacity to do good that I think may rival his capacity for evil - if only he'd believe it.

Laytham Ballard may not be the hero we want, but he is certainly the badass anti-hero we need. The Night Dahlia is a fabulous, entertaining and intricately wrought novel. Outstanding!




Read R.S. Belcher's post: The Night at the Edge of the Road: Where the Nightwise and Brotherhood of the Wheel Series Intersect here.




Previously

Nightwise
Nightwise 1
Tor Books, January 16, 2018 (New Cover & Additional Content)
Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Trade Paperback, September 20, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, August 18, 2015

Review and Giveaway: The Night Dahlia by R.S. Belcher
R.S. Belcher, the acclaimed author of The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana launches a gritty new urban fantasy series set in today's seedy occult underworld in Nightwise.

In the more shadowy corners of the world, frequented by angels and demons and everything in-between, Laytham Ballard is a legend. It's said he raised the dead at the age of ten, stole the Philosopher's Stone in Vegas back in 1999, and survived the bloodsucking kiss of the Mosquito Queen. Wise in the hidden ways of the night, he's also a cynical bastard who stopped thinking of himself as the good guy a long time ago.

Now a promise to a dying friend has Ballard on the trail of an escaped Serbian war criminal with friends in both high and low places-and a sinister history of blood sacrifices. Ballard is hell-bent on making Dusan Slorzack pay for his numerous atrocities, but Slorzack seems to have literally dropped off the face of the Earth, beyond the reach of his enemies, the Illuminati, and maybe even the Devil himself. To find Slorzack, Ballard must follow a winding, treacherous path that stretches from Wall Street and Washington, D.C. to backwoods hollows and truckstops, while risking what's left of his very soul . . . .

See Qwill's review here.





The Giveaway

What:  1 Trade Paperback copy of The Night Dahlia by R.S. Belcher. US / CANADA ONLY

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Ballard“ with or without the quotation marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel(s) and is provided The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.
Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a United States or Canadian mailing address.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on April 13, 2018. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

Giveaway: The Child by Fiona Barton


Fiona Barton's The Child came out in Trade Paperback on March 6th. Thanks to the publisher we have a copy to giveaway. US Only! See 'The Giveaway' below to see how enter.


The Child 
Berkley, March 6, 2018
Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Hardcover and eBook, June 27, 2017

Giveaway: The Child by Fiona Barton
An NPR Best Book of the Year
A Bustle Best Thriller Novel of the Year

The Child is a perfect blend of beach read and book club selection. It’s a fascinating and fitting follow-up to [Barton’s] best-selling debut novel, The Widow. . . .[A] page-turning whodunit….A novel that is both fast-paced and thought-provoking, it keeps the reader guessing right to the end.”—USA Today

“Fiona Barton brings back reporter Kate Waters from the best-selling The Widow and delivers another winner with The Child.…A truly engaging tale. Those who enjoyed The Widow will discover that Barton has only gotten better.”—The Associated Press

“An engrossing, irresistible story about the coming to light of a long-buried secret and an absolutely fabulous read—I loved it!”—Shari Lapena, New York Times bestselling author of The Couple Next Door

“Tense, tantalizing, and ultimately very satisfying…definitely one of the year’s must-reads.”—Lee Child, #1 New York Times bestselling author

The author of the stunning New York Times bestseller The Widow returns with a brand-new novel of twisting psychological suspense, now in paperback.
As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers human remains, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it’s a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but she’s at a loss for answers. As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier. A newborn baby was stolen from the maternity ward in a local hospital and was never found.

But there is more to the story, and Kate is drawn—house by house—into the pasts of the people who once lived in this neighborhood that has given up its greatest mystery. She soon finds herself the keeper of unexpected secrets that erupt in the lives of three women—and torn between what she can and cannot tell…





About Fiona

Giveaway: The Child by Fiona Barton
Photo by Jenny Lewis
Fiona Barton trains and works with journalists all over the world. Previously, she was a senior writer at the Daily Mail, news editor at the Daily Telegraph, and chief reporter at the Mail on Sunday, where she won Reporter of the Year at the British Press Awards. Born in Cambridge, England, she currently lives in southwest France.










Website  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter @figbarton







The Giveaway

What:  1 Trade Paperback copy of The Child by Fiona Barton. US ONLY

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Child“ with or without the quotation marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel(s) and is provided The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.
Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a United States mailing address.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on April 6, 2018. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

The Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato - Giveaway!


Barnes & Noble in Waterbury, Connecticut recently hosted a book signing by local author Steven Parlato. Parlato, the author of 2013's The Namesake, was on hand from 6pm to 8 pm to welcome the release of his second book, The Precious Dreadful, which was published on February 13, 2018.

The Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato - Giveaway!The Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato - Giveaway!
Photos by Tracey Maknis

A steady line of customers kept the author busy signing books and chatting all evening. A representative from Barnes & Noble in Waterbury confirmed that the event was a sellout, with the store's entire stock of 60+ books sold. The Precious Dreadful is aimed at readers ages 14- 99 according to Simon & Schuster and is a combination of "romance and humor with elements of the paranormal". The Qwillery is pleased to offer a giveaway of one signed hardcover copy of The Precious Dreadful. See how to enter below.





The Precious Dreadful
Simon Pulse. February 13, 2018
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

The Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato - Giveaway!
Combining romance and humor with elements of the paranormal, this is a profound novel about one teenage girl’s decision to redefine her life in the wake of supernatural events.

Teddi Alder is just trying to figure out her life.

When she joins SUMMERTEENS, a library writing group, she’s only looking to keep herself busy, not go digging around in her subconscious. But as she writes, disturbing memories of her lost childhood friend Corey bubble to the surface, and Teddi begins to question everything: her friendship with her BFF Willa, how much her mom really knows, and even her own memories. Teddi fears she’s losing her grip on reality—as evidenced by that mysterious ghost-girl who emerges from the park pool one night, the one who won’t leave Teddi alone. To top it all off, she finds herself juggling two guys with potential, a quirky new boy named Joy and her handsome barista crush Aidan, who has some issues of his own.

As the summer unfolds, Teddi is determined to get to the bottom of everything—her feelings, the mysterious ghost-girl, and the memories of Corey that refuse to be ignored.





About Steven

The Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato - Giveaway!
Photo by Jillian Parlato
Award-winning author and poet, Steven Parlato, has work in Freshwater, Peregrine, and other journals. Upon the release of his YA debut, The Namesake, by Merit Press in 2013, Publishers Weekly called Parlato “a name to watch.” A college English professor (with a giraffe-filled office), illustrator, and actor, Steven has played roles including the Scarecrow, Macbeth, and the Munchie Mania Guy in a Friendly’s training film. He lives in Connecticut with his wife, two teens, and a Binks-like cockapoo. Follow Steven online at StevenParlato.com and on Twitter @ParlatoWrites.







The Giveaway

What:  1 signed copy of The Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato. US / CANADA ONLY

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Dreadful“ with or without the quote marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel(s) and is provided The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.
Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a United States or Canadian mailing address.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on February 28, 2018. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

Review and Giveaway - Sinless by Sarah Tarkoff


Sinless
AuthorSarah Tarkoff
Series:  Eye of the Beholder 1
Publisher:  Harper Voyager, January 9, 2018
Format:  Trade Paperback and eBook, 304 pages
List Price:  US$15.99 (print); US$9.99 (eBook)
ISBN:  9780062456380 (print); 9780062456397 (ebook)

Review and Giveaway - Sinless by Sarah Tarkoff
With shades of Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies and Ally Condie’s Matched, this cinematic dystopian novel—the first in the thrilling Eye of the Beholder series—is set in a near future society in which "right" and "wrong" are manifested by beauty and ugliness.

In Grace Luther’s world, morality is physically enforced. Those who are "good" are blessed with beauty, while those who are not suffer horrifying consequences—disfigurement or even death. The daughter of a cleric, Grace has always had faith in the higher power that governs her world. But when she stumbles onto information that leaves her questioning whether there are more complicated—and dangerous—forces manipulating the people around her, she finds herself at the center of an epic battle, where good and evil are not easily distinguished. Despite all her efforts to live a normal teenage life, Grace is faced with a series of decisions that will risk the lives of everyone she loves—and, ultimately, her own.

With each page in this electrifying debut novel, Sarah Tarkoff masterfully plunges us into a nightmarish vision of the future. Full of high drama and pulsating tension, Sinless explores the essential questions teenagers wrestle with every day—What is beauty? What is faith? Do we take our surroundings at face value and accept all that we have been taught, or do we question the mores of the society into which we are born?—and places them in the context of a dark, dystopian world where appearances are most definitely deceiving.



Qwill's Thoughts

Sinless by Sarah Tarkoff is the first novel in the Eye of the Beholder trilogy. This is a YA novel with very strong adult crossover appeal. The story is told from the point of view of Grace Luther, the teenage daughter of a cleric. The setting is the near future America after the Revelation when the Great Spirit revealed itself to humanity. Belief in the Great Spirit has become universal. All other faiths have faded in the overwhelming onslaught of this new god. People are Punished if they do something wrong - their looks are affected. The ultimate punishment is death. But in between the religious and the pure of heart/thought and death via Punishment for a moral failing are the Outcasts. These are people who are disfigured by their sins. The Great Spirit makes it easy to see who is good and who is evil. Stay on the straight and narrow, avoid sins, believe in and follow the rules of the Great Spirit and you are beautiful. Stray and you are disfigured or dead.

Grace is the daughter of a leading cleric in the new religion. She was young when the Great Spirit appeared. Now she is a very well-behaved and pure teenager who believes in the Great Spirit thoroughly. Sinless deals with the gradual (and not so gradual) unraveling of her beliefs. This is Grace's story. I did not initially like Grace. She changes her thoughts and feelings so much that the reader could at times get whiplash. In other words, I found her to be a very credible teenager. I think my problems with Grace stem form Tarkoff spending too little time making the initial changes in Grace's thinking believable. I found that process too abrupt which for me made almost everything she did from that point suspect. Grace is being pulled in so many directions. What and who should she believe? Who is telling the truth? I found her internal monologue at times illuminating but did not really enjoy being in her brain so much. I came to like her though. She struggled with everything and like most people made good and bad decisions. In Sinless she is looking back on the events of those teenage years. It is made very clear in the beginning that Grace is telling her story from a federal prison. How she ended up in prison is not revealed in Sinless.

Tarkoff's writing flows beautifully and the world building is exceptional. The advent of the Great Spirit and the resulting world is very well done. There are some terrific and surprising reveals about the Great Spirit. A world where everyone behaves well because of immediate fear of disfigurement or death sounds peaceful and wonderful but it is not. As Grace learns more about a world she was so certain of so do we. The cracks in the surface of this peaceful world are there. Tarkoff has created a true dystopia.

The supporting cast was interesting. We don't get much background on many of them but then Sinless is not really about them. What is important about them, at least in Sinless, is their interactions and influences on Grace. From her father to the Prophet Joshua, we see them through Grace's eyes.

There is a lot more to learn about this new world of the Great Spirit and many questions that need to be answered. Fortunately there are 2 more novels upcoming in the series. Tarkoff gives the reader a lot to think about - faith, beauty, guilt, and what are you willing to give up to live in an apparently perfect world? Sinless is an engaging and entertaining debut.





The Giveaway

What:  2 copies of Sinless (Trade Paperback) by Sarah Tarkoff. 2 books - 2 winners - 1 book each US ONLY

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Sinless“ with or without the quote marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel(s) and is provided The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.
Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a United States mailing address.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on January 18, 2018. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway


Please welcome Deborah Blake with an excerpt from Dangerously Divine, the 2nd Broken Rider novel, coming on November 28th from Berkley. And enter the giveaway for a US$10 Amazon Gift Card.



Dangerously Divine
A Broken Rider Novel 2
Berkley, November 28, 2017
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
The author of the “wonderful” (Tamora Pierce) Baba Yaga novels and Dangerously Charming is back with a magically mesmerizing new tale about the dashing and daring Broken Riders…

The Riders: Three immortal brothers who kept the Baba Yagas safe, now stripped of their summons to protect. But fate is not finished with them—and their new callings are even more powerful…

Though his physical wounds have healed, Gregori Sun, the eldest of the Riders, remains in spiritual turmoil. His search for his mother, the one person able to heal his soul and save his life, is failing—until he crosses paths with a beautiful and fascinating librarian who might be the key to his salvation…

Ciera Evans’s bookish ways are just a guise. The product of a difficult past, she has dedicated her life to saving lost teens—by any means necessary. She works alone, but when a dark, brooding stranger proposes they team up to solve both their problems, she is tempted—in more ways than one…

After Ciera and Sun’s plans are derailed by dangerous enemies, they find themselves entangled in an ungodly affair—one that will force them to either find new strength together or be forever haunted by their pasts alone.








Chapter 1

Gregori Sun stared at his reflection in the spotty bathroom mirror of a cheap motel: waist-length straight dark hair pulled back in a tail, black eyes set at a slight slant over the flat cheekbones of his Mongolian ancestors, and the Fu Manchu mustache he’d worn since he’d become a man, longer ago than anyone who met him might imagine. The harsh glare of the light fixture glinted off the straight razor in his right hand. It trembled almost imperceptibly, a leftover echo of the debilitating damage he’d taken a year ago at the hands of the deranged and powerful witch who had once been his ally and a trusted friend.
        A deep breath and a moment’s focused attention banished the tremor and steadied his hand for the task ahead. Sun entertained the wistful thought that it would be nice if all his other remaining issues could be dealt with as easily. But he was not a man who had ever taken the easy way, even if there had been one available, which there was not. Hence this next step.
        Before he could change his mind, the razor flashed—once, twice, three times. Black hair fell into the sink, its darkness a stark contrast against the pitted white porcelain, just as his former life was a stark contrast to his present existence and his future path. The acrid smell of the motel’s antiseptic cleaner echoed his mood.
        Now the face staring back at him seemed to belong to a stranger. Clean-shaven, with hair barely long enough to be held back by the leather thong he wore, the man in the mirror seemed somehow younger and more vulnerable, although he still wore Sun’s habitual aura of impenetrable calm. As with much else in Sun’s life these days, it was more semblance than reality.
        The Buddhist monastery he was entering didn’t require first-year novices to shave their heads, any more than it mandated specific formal clothing. Students were only expected to obey the basic rules and follow the regimen of study, practice, and service. Sun had laid aside his traditional red leathers and silks anyway, as another way of putting aside the past, and now wore loose black wool pants and a black cotton turtleneck more suited to the frigid Minnesota winters.
        The commitment he was making felt worthy of a symbolic sacrifice, even if no one was aware of it but him.
        This was a new beginning in search of a new man; he couldn’t go into it looking the same as he had for more than a thousand years. Sun was so changed on the inside, he barely knew who he was any more. His outside might as well reflect that.

The alley reeked of rancid garbage, burning grease from the Chinese restaurant at the far end, and other pungent odors best not examined too closely, the smell so strong it almost seemed like a solid presence. An abandoned collection of ramshackle cardboard, once the temporary shelter for a homeless person, continued its slow, decaying crumble down the brick side of the building to her left, and rats scrabbled over some half-frozen garbage in an overturned can to her right.
        Ciera Evans ignored them all as she concentrated on her silent pursuit of the man she’d followed for the last six nights. He vanished into the back of a dimly lit building, the door gaping open long enough to reveal a smoky interior and a circle of men sitting around a faded green table playing poker. Drunken laughter spilled out into the night and then cut off with a slam that even the rats ignored. It was that kind of neighborhood.
        Not what she was looking for, she thought. Not tonight. But soon.
        She backed away, careful not to trip over anything in the alley as she tucked a stray lock of dark curly hair under the hoodie that kept her reasonably warm on this cold Minnesota night while also masking her distinctive features. The worn brown leather jacket she wore on top of the hoodie fit right into the usual local attire, so she wasn’t too worried about being noticed on her way back to the car.
        A couple of blocks away, though, Ciera realized she was being stalked in turn. Ironic, really. And a little inconvenient, but she could feel the pulse speed up in her throat and admitted to herself that on some level she was almost eager to be forced into action after long nights of watching and waiting and doing nothing.
        The two men who followed her no doubt thought she was easy prey. They were about to find out just how wrong they were.
        “Hand over your money and your phone and nobody needs to get hurt,” said the bigger of the two toughs as they closed in on her. His heavy boots clattered on the icy sidewalk, the same sound that had alerted Ciera to her unwanted escort.
        “That’s what you think,” Ciera said, using a low, raspy voice to disguise her sex. A twist of her wrists sent her fighting sticks sliding out of her sleeves and into her hands, and she set her feet in a stance that was both rooted and flexible. “Last chance to walk away, boys.”
        The shorter man, underdressed for the weather in ripped pants and holey sneakers, shook his shaved head. “Not a chance, dude. In case you haven’t noticed, there are two of us and only one of you, and you’re kind of scrawny. A couple of pieces of wood aren’t going to save you.” He nodded to his friend and they both moved in closer, scruffy faces wearing matching expressions of stubble-adorned menace.
        “Too true,” Ciera whispered, lower than they were likely to hear. “But a couple of pieces of wood and years of self-defense classes will go a long way.”
        She didn’t bother to show off—a rookie mistake—attacking instead in a flurry of kicks and hits aimed at vulnerable knees, elbows, and collarbones that left the men lying groaning on the ground behind her. She shoved the fighting sticks back up her sleeves and kept on walking without a backward glance.
        A few twists and turns later and she was back at the car she always used for her evening forays. It couldn’t be traced to her since it was registered in the name of a woman long dead. A practical vehicle, it also served to remind her of why she did what she did. The dead woman had been her friend. More than her friend—her savior. Now Ciera carried on her friend’s mission, because it was the only way she could repay the debt she owed. And because she’d made a promise to the only person in her life who had ever kept their word to her.
        Back in her apartment, she stripped off the anonymous hoodie and stared at herself in the bathroom mirror. She wasn’t sure she recognized the woman staring back at her. It was hard to say which one was real—the face she showed the world during the day or the one she hid at night. Maybe neither. But if there was another Ciera beyond those two, she wasn’t sure what that woman would look like. Or if she’d even like her if she ever had a chance to find out.





The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a US$10 Amazon Gift Card from Deborah.

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Divine“ with or without the quote marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and email address. The winning email  address is used only to allow the author to contact the winner and is provided to the author and/or The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other email address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.

Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans in the United States or Canada with an with an email address. You may have to set up an Amazon account in order to use the gift card.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on December 2, 2017. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.





Previously

Dangerously Charming
A Broken Rider Novel 1
Berkley, October 4, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
From the author of the Baba Yaga novels, a brand new series set in the same “addicting”* world, filled with wild magic, enchanting damsels, and the irresistibly daring men who serve the Baba Yagas…

The Riders are three immortal brothers who protect the mythical Baba Yagas. But their time serving the witches has ended—and their new destinies are just beginning…

Ever since a near-fatal mistake stripped Mikhail Day and his brothers of their calling to be Riders, Day has hidden from his shame and his new, mortal life in a remote cabin in the Adirondack mountains. But when a desperate young woman appears on his doorstep, he cannot resist helping her—and cannot deny how strongly he’s drawn to her…

For generations, women in Jenna Quinlan’s family have been cursed to give up their first born child to the vengeful fairy Zilya. When Jenna finds herself unexpectedly pregnant, she is determined to break her family’s curse and keep her baby, even if it means teaming up with a mysterious and charismatic man with demons of his own…

To unravel the curse, Jenna and Day will have to travel deep into the Otherworld. But the biggest challenge of the journey might not be solving an ancient puzzle but learning to heal their own broken hearts…






About Deborah

Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
Deborah Blake is the author of Veiled Magic and the Baba Yaga novels, including Wickedly Wonderful and Wickedly Dangerous. She has published numerous books on modern witchcraft with Llewellyn Worldwide and has an ongoing column in Witches & Pagans magazine. When not writing, Deborah runs The Artisans’ Guild, a cooperative shop she founded with a friend in 1999, and also works as a jewelry maker, tarot reader, and energy healer. She lives in a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural upstate New York with five cats who supervise all her activities, both magical and mundane.


Newsletter  ~  Website  ~  Blog  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter @deborahblake





Also by Deborah Blake

The Baba Yaga Series

Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
Wickedly Magical
A Baba Yaga Novella
Berkley, August 5, 2014
eBook, 73 pages

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one…

Barbara Yager loves being one of the most powerful witches in the world, but sometimes she’d rather kick back in her enchanted Airstream with a beer in her hand than work out how to grant the requests of the worthy few who seek her out.

But when a man appears with the token of a family debt of honor, Barbara must drop everything to satisfy the promise owed by her predecessor—and she isn’t above being a little wicked to make sure the debt is paid in full…



Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
Wickedly Dangerous
A Baba Yaga Novel 1
Berkley, September 2, 2014
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

FIRST IN A NEW SERIES!

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one of them…

Older than she looks and powerful beyond measure, Barbara Yager no longer has much in common with the mortal life she left behind long ago. Posing as an herbalist and researcher, she travels the country with her faithful (mostly) dragon-turned-dog in an enchanted Airstream, fulfilling her duties as a Baba Yaga and avoiding any possibility of human attachment.

But when she is summoned to find a missing child, Barbara suddenly finds herself caught up in a web of deceit and an unexpected attraction to the charming but frustrating Sheriff Liam McClellan.

Now, as Barbara fights both human enemies and Otherworld creatures to save the lives of three innocent children, she discovers that her most difficult battle may be with her own heart…



Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
Wickedly Wonderful
A Baba Yaga Novel 2
Berkley, December 2, 2014
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one of them…

Though she looks like a typical California surfer girl, Beka Yancy is in fact a powerful yet inexperienced witch who’s struggling with her duties as a Baba Yaga. Luckily she has her faithful dragon-turned-dog for moral support, especially when faced with her biggest job yet…

A mysterious toxin is driving the Selkie and Mer from their homes deep in the trenches of Monterey Bay. To investigate, Beka buys her way onto the boat of Marcus Dermott, a battle-scarred former U.S. Marine, and his ailing fisherman father.

While diving for clues, Beka drives Marcus crazy with her flaky New Age ideas and dazzling blue eyes. She thinks he’s rigid and cranky (and way too attractive). Meanwhile, a charming Selkie prince has plans that include Beka. Only by trusting her powers can Beka save the underwater races, pick the right man, and choose the path she’ll follow for the rest of her life…



Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
Wickedly Ever After
A Baba Yaga Novella
InterMix, January 19, 2016
eBook, 66 pages

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one…

Having triumphed over a powerful enemy and ended up with both a wonderful guy—Sheriff Liam McClellan—and an adorable adopted daughter to raise as a Baba Yaga, Barbara Yager is ready to welcome her happily ever after.

But first she must bring Liam to the Otherworld and get the Queen’s permission to marry him. The Queen, however, is not so easily persuaded. She gives them three impossible tasks to complete in two weeks’ time—and if they fail Barbara will have to watch Liam slowly age and die like all humans, and kiss her happily ever after good-bye forever.

Includes an exclusive preview of the next Baba Yaga Novel, Wickedly Powerful



Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and Giveaway
Wickedly Powerful
A Baba Yaga Novel 3
Berkley, February 2, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

The author of Wickedly Wonderful returns to her “addicting”* world of Russian witches in the latest Baba Yaga novel.

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one of them…

The only thing more fiery than Bella Young’s red hair is her temper. She knows that a Baba Yaga’s power without strict control can leave the people she cares about burned, so to protect her heart—and everyone around her—the only company she keeps is her dragon-turned-Norwegian-Forest-cat, Koshka.

But when Bella is tasked with discovering who’s setting magical fires throughout Wyoming’s Black Hills, she finds herself working closely with former hotshots firefighter Sam Corbett—and falling hard for his quiet strength and charm.

Sam may bear the scars of his past, but Bella can see beyond them and would do anything to help him heal. Only before she can rescue her Prince Charming, she’ll have to overcome the mysterious foe setting the forest fires—a truly wicked witch who wields as much power and even more anger than Bella…



Excerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and GiveawayWickedly Spirited
A Baba Yaga Novella
InterMix, September 19, 2017
eBook, 55 pages

Jazz, the powerfully magical teen first introduced in Wickedly Powerful, is now being trained as a Baba Yaga—and she’s determined to free the Broken Riders herself.

Jazz had a rough life before meeting her guardian, and she knows she’s lucky that Bella is training her to be a Baba Yaga. But the gifted young witch is frustrated by the slow pace of her lessons. Jazz knows she’s capable of even greater magic, and she wants nothing more than to find a spell that will give the Riders back the immortality they lost.

With the reluctant assistance of Bella’s dragon-turned-cat Koshka, Jazz travels to the Otherworld to get the necessary ingredients to perform the spell. A willful young witch, dangerous magic, and one powerful wish—what could possibly go wrong?


BEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction


Tracey writes about the TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction panel that was presented at BookExpo America (BEA) on June 1st:

BEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction
From left to right: Charlie Jane Anders, Malka Older and Annalee Newitz

Thursday afternoon, BEA offered the panel: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction which was moderated by the author of All the Birds in the Sky, Charlie Jane Anders. During this 30 minute panel, Anders asked Malka Older, author of Infomocracy and the upcoming Null States and Annalee Newitz, author of the upcoming Autonomous, some fascinating questions on the factors that influenced them as they wrote their novels.

Anders started by asking how the authors prepared for setting their books in the future.

Older, whose book is set about 60 years from now, replied that it really depends on how far forward you want to go.

Newitz had more to say. Since her novel is set approximately 150 years in the future, she felt she had some "wiggle room" in terms of how current events might have transformed things. She describes her thought process in this way: First, she figured there would be 4 to 5 generations between now and then. Next, she looked back at history and thought about how much different her great grandmother's life was from her own. For instance, one contrast between her great grandmother's day and the present is that women can now vote. In her novel, there are robots who possess artificial intelligence. These robots have gone through their own civil rights movement and have gained civil rights. She stated that in comparison "there are civil rights for people of color in this country, nominally."


Next, Anders spoke about how fascinating each unique world is and asked the authors how they went about making their characters memorable.

Older stated that when she was starting to write Infomocracy she really wanted to talk about how government and politics could look different in the future. She wanted to write an adventurous story because that's the kind of thing she likes reading. So, she said, "it was really important to have characters who could connect with the present". Although her characters were born in the future, they still have a lot of the same concerns that people currently do.

One of Newitz's characters is a young robot on his very first mission and he's struggling to understand his place in the world. She said that her "first image was of (this) robot feeling physical pain. I was imagining this robot going through training exercises, climbing a sand dune, and getting sand caught in his actuators in his legs. How that would feel to him and what the emotional impact would be." This first experience with physical pain leads to emotional pain because he feels betrayed by the humans that raised him. She says she actually built the world of Autonomous around this character. Another important factor for Newitz was to find a balance between her "nerdy excitement about world building" and her "sense of human sadness and horror."


Anders then asked about the underlying theme of idealism followed by burnout that occurs in both novels.

Older says her novel is "a thought experiment in a lot of ways". She took a close look at politics and how things could be different in the future. She wanted her characters to be engaged in these politics and she knew that by the end, there was going to be a feeling of exhaustion. Also, she wanted to convey the feeling that there are limits of what can be accomplished; even by people who are so engaged and hopeful.

Newitz's other central character is Jack, a pharmaceutical pirate who starts out as a very idealistic grad student. Jack soon realizes that the world of medicine has been completely corrupted by corporations. Medicine has become too expensive for the poor, so she becomes an outlaw. She's completely burned out as she copes with working in underground labs to reverse engineer drugs and from fleeing from the law. The big question Newitz says she asks of her characters is, "if we are trying to change things, how far do we want to go, and how radical do we want to get?"


Anders commented that both novels have a very strong sense of place and wondered how the authors accomplished that. Both authors agree, by trying to visit the places that they write about.
For Older it was extremely important for her book to be global. She added that "they say write what you know but I think you can write about what you miss." It helps makes things very vivid.
Newitz stated that although she has not sailed on the Arctic Sea (like Jack), she spent a lot of time studying maps and geography. She says she also thought about new trades routes and how they would need to be based on climate change but also her world's economic system which is based on indenture. She said indenture "is just a nice term for slavery, but people like to call it indenture in the future so that they don't feel quite so bad for enslaving robots."

She believes the little details are huge. Newitz said Older "has amazing images of food in her novel and she also has a great way of showing what it's like to pass over a border." She says those are the kinds of detail that help people "smell the place and kind of see the place in their imagination."


Anders then asked about climate change and how both writers approached this when writing their books.

Older thinks it is an extremely important issue to take into consideration. She says she may have downplayed climate change a bit and made some optimistic assumptions but that even so, in her book there are certain countries completely under water. She says she looked at population maps as well because population is a major issue in her book. Studying maps helped her to keep things as realistic as possible..

Newitz, says she thinks it's crucial to include climate change in any vision of the future. She stated "We are heading into a world where geography will be changed by the environment transforming." Newitz, who is also a science journalist, has interviewed geoscientists who have said that things are going to be really screwed up for the next 1000 years. She concluded by saying "If you are setting a book in the next 1000 years, then absolutely, you have to be thinking about how settlements of humans will change, settlements of animals will change and (how) the composition of the ocean will change. There's just no getting away from it."


Finally Anders commented that both book have amazingly diverse cultures and ethnic groups. Anders asked the authors if this occurred naturally or if it was a reflection on how they wanted to portray the future.

Older didn't think it was a big change from the present. She said that we live in a diverse place with many different groups of people, To Older, the interesting part of writing her book was to decide "what are the things that we worry about now that have disappeared in the future and what are the new things that might come up." She said that "as a species we tend to find new ways to dice and slice ourselves into different groups."

Newitz candidly announced that she is "just not that interested in white people." She went on to say that she was more interested in writing about nonhumans. She felt it would be really interesting to explore how a robot would look at humans. She said that she had always been drawn to stories about nonhuman animals and aliens and their experiences. For Newitz it was a natural way to get away from the standard sci-fi plot.


BEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction
Malka Older (left) and Annalee Newitz (right)



All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders is available now and has won the 2016 Nebula Award for Best Novel, the Crawford Award for a novel published in 2016, and is nominated for the 2017 Hugo Award for Best Novel.

Infomocracy by Malka Older is available now and Null States, the second novel in the Centenal Cycle, will be available on September 19, 2017. Malka Older a finalist for the The John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer (presented at the Hugo Awards). Infomocracy is a Locus Award Finalist for Best First Novel.

Autonomous by Annalee Newitz publishes on September 19, 2017 and is Annalee's debut fiction book. Annalee Newitz's most recent non-fiction book is Scatter, Adapt, and Remember: How Humans Will Survive a Mass Extinction which was a Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist in Science & Technology.


We have a fabulous giveaway for you: signed copies of All the Birds in the Sky (Trade Paperback), Null States (printed paperback ARC) and Autonomous (printed paperback ARC)! Follow the directions in The Giveaway section below to enter.

 All the Birds in the Sky
Tor Books, April 11, 2017
Trade Paperback, 336 pages
Hardcover and eBook, January 26, 2016

BEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction
From the former editor-in-chief of io9.com, a stunning novel about the end of the worldand the beginning of our future

Childhood friends Patricia Delfine and Laurence Armstead didn't expect to see each other again, after parting ways under mysterious circumstances during middle school. After all, the development of magical powers and the invention of a two-second time machine could hardly fail to alarm one's peers and families.

But now they're both adults, living in the hipster mecca San Francisco, and the planet is falling apart around them. Laurence is an engineering genius who's working with a group that aims to avert catastrophic breakdown through technological intervention. Patricia is a graduate of Eltisley Maze, the hidden academy for the world's magically gifted, and works with a small band of other magicians to secretly repair the world's every-growing ailments. Little do they realize that something bigger than either of them, something begun years ago in their youth, is determined to bring them together—to either save the world, or plunge it into a new dark ages.

Charlie Jane Anders' All the Birds in the Sky is a deeply magical, darkly funny examination of life, love, and the apocalypse.

Null States
The Centenal Cycle 2
Tor.com, September 19, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 432 pages

BEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction
"Kinetic and gripping" —NPR on Infomocracy

Null States continues Campbell Award finalist Malka Older's Centenal Cycle, the trilogy beginning with Infomocracy

A Locus Award Finalist for Best First Novel
The book The Huffington Post called "one of the greatest literary debuts in recent history"
Named one of the best books of the year by The Washington Post, The Verge, Flavorwire, Kirkus, and Book Riot

The future of democracy is about to implode.
After the last controversial global election, the global infomocracy that has ensured thirty years of world peace is fraying at the edges. As the new Supermajority government struggles to establish its legitimacy, agents of Information across the globe strive to keep the peace and maintain the flows of data that feed the new world order.

In the newly-incorporated DarFur, a governor dies in a fiery explosion. In Geneva, a superpower hatches plans to bring microdemocracy to its knees. In Central Asia, a sprawling war among archaic states threatens to explode into a global crisis. And across the world, a shadowy plot is growing, threatening to strangle Information with the reins of power.

Autonomous
Tor Books, September 19, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 304 pages

BEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science Fiction
The highly anticipated science fiction debut from the founder of io9!

Earth, 2144. Jack is an anti-patent scientist turned drug pirate, traversing the world in a submarine as a pharmaceutical Robin Hood, fabricating cheap scrips for poor people who can’t otherwise afford them. But her latest drug hack has left a trail of lethal overdoses as people become addicted to their work, doing repetitive tasks until they become unsafe or insane.

Hot on her trail, an unlikely pair: Eliasz, a brooding military agent, and his robotic partner, Paladin. As they race to stop information about the sinister origins of Jack’s drug from getting out, they begin to form an uncommonly close bond that neither of them fully understand.

And underlying it all is one fundamental question: Is freedom possible in a culture where everything, even people, can be owned?





The Giveaway

What: All the Birds in the Sky (Trade Paperback) by Charlie Jane Anders, Null States (printed paperback ARC) by Malka Older and Autonomous (printed paperback ARC) by Annalee Newitz. Each book is signed by the author! INTERNATIONAL

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “TOR SF“ with or without the quote marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel(s) and is provided to the publisher and/or The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.
Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on June 23, 2017. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

Guest Blog by Victoria Thompson and Review and Giveaway of Murder in the Bowery


Please welcome Victoria Thompson to The Qwillery. Murder in the Bowery, the 19th Gaslight Mystery, was published on May 2nd by Berkley.



Guest Blog by Victoria Thompson and Review and Giveaway of Murder in the Bowery




Newsboy Makes the News
          Newsboys were everywhere in turn of the century New York City. More than a dozen newspapers covered the City’s happenings, and ragged children—mostly boys but a few girls, too—stood on street corners morning and night in all weathers to sell them for a penny or two. Most of these children were homeless orphans or had simply been abandoned by families unable to care for them any longer, so their home was on the street.
          Eventually, charities stepped in to help these children by opening Newsboys’ Lodging Houses. In these houses, the “Newsies”, as they were called, could find a hot meal and a bed for the night for a nickel each, although the boys preferred to “carry the banner,” which was their slang for sleeping on the street. The Newsies didn’t care for charity, and they certainly didn’t appreciate being cheated, so when two of the biggest newspapers raised the price of the papers for the boys without raising the customer’s price, they went on strike. Could a bunch of rag-tag children beat Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst at their own game?
          That’s only one question Private Investigator Frank Malloy and his new bride, Sarah Brandt, must answer in Murder in the Bowery when the search for a missing newsboy leads them to the innocent debutant, a ruthless gangster, and a Bowery “guide” who takes rich men on “slumming” tours of the neighborhood. But none of these people is who or what they seem, and Frank and Sarah have to find the truth before a killer strikes again.





Murder in the Bowery
Series:  A Gaslight Mystery 19
Publisher:  Berkley, May 2, 2017
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 304 pages
List Price:  US$26.00 (print); US$12.99 (eBook)
ISBN:  9781101987117 (print); 9781101987124 (eBook)

Guest Blog by Victoria Thompson and Review and Giveaway of Murder in the Bowery
The latest Gaslight Mystery from the bestselling author of Murder in Morningside Heights finds Sarah Brandt and Frank Malloy searching for a connection between a murdered newsie and a high society woman with dangerous habits.

Frank Malloy’s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He’s searching for his brother, a newsboy named Freddie, so he can share his new financial good fortune. Frank makes quick work of the case and locates Freddie, but a happy reunion between brothers is not in the cards.

When Will’s name is mentioned, Freddie runs off—only to be found dead a short time later. Suspicious, Frank tracks down Will who spins a tale of lust and deceit involving a young society woman, Estelle Longacre, also recently deceased.  Frank can’t be sure if Estelle’s risky behavior and the company she kept was to blame, or if her own ruthless family had a hand in her death.

Frank will need Sarah’s help to unearth the dark secrets of the wealthy Longacres and to discover if there is a connection between Estelle and Freddie’s death. Together they must navigate a perilous underground web of treachery to find the truth.



Jennifer's Review

The latest installment in the long running historical Gaslight Mystery series by Victoria Thompson is entitled Murder in the Bowery. This time we see former society debutante turned midwife, Sarah Brandt Malloy, and her private detective husband, Frank Malloy, return to the seedier side of turn-of-the-century New York in search of a clever killer.

Sarah and Frank are the perfect fictional couple. She is a strong willed yet loving woman and he is a tough former police detective who has a compassionate heart. Since Frank unexpectedly inherited a fortune, left the police force, and finally felt able to marry Sarah, he has opened a detective agency and now takes any client that intrigues him, regardless of they ability to pay him a fee. Sarah and Frank's live in newly renovated home with their children, Frank's deaf son Brian from his first marriage and Sarah's ward Catherine, Maeve, the children's cheeky nursemaid who grew up on the streets, and Malloy's stoic Irish mother. Gino Donatelli, also a former police officer, is a frequent visitor as he is now Frank's assistant and has strong feelings for the sweet but hardened Maeve.

The mystery unfolds as Frank is getting used to having a new private inquiry service and Sarah is busy searching for a property in the slums of New York to turn into a free maternity home. Frank is tasked to find a young newsboy named Freddie “Two-Toes” Bert during the strike that pits the newsies against the rich and powerful newspaper owners by his brother, Will Bert, a handsome and smartly dressed young man. Frank and Gino quickly locate Freddie, who instantly runs off at the mention of Will's name and is later found murdered in an alley. Frank vows to locate the murderer, feeling that he may have led the killer to the poor boy. He discovers that the recent murder of the young Estelle Longacre, a beautiful society girl also found dead in the Bowery, where she had no reason to be, is inextricably linked to Freddie's death.

During the course of the investigation we are introduced to various characters closely linked to the victims, both those in the slums and those in society. In the Bowery we meet Raven and Kid Blink. Raven is a young newsie who was close to Freddie, and Kid Blink is the clever and hard leader of the newsboy strike who looks after the newsies like an older brother, and Black Jack Robinson, a frightening and powerful Bowery gangster who knew both of the victims. On the society side we meet Estelle's extended and dysfunctional family. Estelle's father, Horace Longacre is a miserable tyrant who also happens to be on his death bed and exhibits little tender feelings for his family. Penelope Longacre is Estelle's surly spinster aunt who's only concern is for her ward, Norman Tufts, a hapless young man whom Penelope hoped Estelle would soon marry. The only servants in their household are Marie and Tom, a married couple who serve as maid and man-of-all-work, who prove to be integral to solving the mystery.

As with all of the Gaslight Mysteries, Murder in the Bowery moves seamlessly from the murder plot to the behind the scenes lives of both the main characters and those who are entangled in the murder. The author has such a knack for strong characterization that both the well-loved main characters and the new ones fueling the current mystery practically jump off the page with their realness. Thompson is able to keep the story fresh and interesting and fans of this long running series will not be disappointed with this new installment.





About Victoria

Guest Blog by Victoria Thompson and Review and Giveaway of Murder in the Bowery
Photo by Monica Z
About the author Edgar® and Agatha Nominated author Victoria Thompson writes the Gaslight Mystery Series, set in turn-of-the-century New York City and featuring midwife Sarah Brandt. Her latest, Murder in the Bowery, is a May 2017 release from Berkley Prime Crime. She also contributed to the award winning writing textbook Many Genres/One Craft. Victoria teaches in the Seton Hill University master’s program in writing popular fiction. She lives in Illinois with her husband and a very spoiled little dog. Find out more at www.victoriathompson.com. Follow her on Facebook at Victoria.Thompson.Author and on Twitter @gaslightvt.









The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a copy of Murder in the Bowery by Victoria Thompson from the publisher. US ONLY

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Bowery“ with or without the quote marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel and is provided to the publisher and/or The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted once the giveaway ends.
Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a US mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59PM US Eastern Time on June 7, 2017. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

Guest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway


Please welcome Peter McLean to The Qwillery. Damnation, the 3rd Burned Man Novel, was published on May 2nd by Angry Robot. You should read this series!



Guest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway



Urban Fantasy: The YA Gateway Drug?

It has apparently been asserted on Twitter (I know, what hasn’t?) that urban fantasy makes for an easy crossover between Young Adult and Adult fantasy fiction, that it’s a “gateway drug” for teens to discover adult fantasy such as A Song Of Ice And Fire or The First Law.

Someone brought this to my attention, saying she thought it was hilarious that books like Ben Aaronovitch’s or mine should be read by young adults and citing the swearing and the violence contained in them as reasons why not. You don’t get violence and swearing in “kids’ books”, right? That’s an interesting point and I can see where she’s coming from, but consider this:

Category Young Adult fiction is marketed at 13-18 year olds, with Middle Grade being the younger market of 8-12 year olds. I’m sure there’s a degree of fudge factor in there depending which publisher’s marketing department you speak to, but that’s roughly how it works. Now, I certainly wouldn’t want an 8 year old reading my books, or even most 13 year olds, but 15+ is a different matter. When I was that age I was reading Stephen King and James Herbert and even Herbert Kastle when nobody was looking (yes, those are pure violence and filth, I admit it) and so was nearly every other lad in my year at school.

Teenagers do things we might like to pretend they don’t, but that doesn’t change the fact of it. Modern YA fiction doesn’t shy away from these things, either. The last YA novel I read was Sarah Pinborough’s brilliant 13 Minutes, and if you read that book you’ll see what I mean. Teenagers do swear and they do take drugs and have sex, and sometimes they kill people too, both in the book and in real life. You can debate whether or not they should until the cows come home, but that doesn’t change the fact that they do. Yes some 16 year-olds are still emotionally and developmentally “kids”, but some (in the UK at least) are already in the army at that age and they really aren’t.

So no, I don’t think swearing and violence makes a book unsuitable for (later) teens. The difference between YA and adult fiction isn’t the swearing and violence, it’s the underlying themes of the story and the life experiences of the characters. Protagonists in YA are usually the same age or a year or two older at most than the target market for the book, so are generally teenagers in the 15-19 year old range. There is a lot more to modern YA fiction than the tried and tested “coming of age story”, and to suggest otherwise does a great disservice to the genre, but not withstanding that YA stories are by definition about things that affect, or are relatable to their target audience. There’s some really great YA fiction about drug dependency, about teenage pregnancy, about self-harm and eating disorders, but as far as I know there is no YA fiction about going through a bitter divorce or trying to find a way to afford to put your kids through college.

Those are adult experiences, not teenage ones, and the themes they would explore (having wasted the best years of your life, social failure, financial stress, wanting your children to have a better life than you had) are broadly adult themes rather than teen ones. That, I think, is the underlying thread that makes my books and Ben’s firmly adult novels. My main character Don Drake is a seedy forty-something magician, not a hip young vampire slayer. His personal demons are long-term addiction, his deeply-buried memories of domestic abuse from a decade when it just wasn’t talked about, and a desperate need not to turn into the man that his father was at his age. Those are adult themes and while I’d be happy to let a 15 year-old read Drake or any of the rest of my books I’m not sure how much of it they would or even could relate to on a personal level.

So no, I don’t think adult urban fantasy is intrinsically unsuitable for teens but neither do I think it is necessarily their obvious first step into adult fantasy in general. These days, that gateway drug is television. Game of Thrones has been a phenomenal success worldwide, and I suspect that a good number of teens have been watching the show despite HBO putting an 18+ rating on it. For those who haven’t, there’s MTV’s Sword of Shannara, or “Beverly Hills 9021Elf” as I’ve heard some wag describe it, and of course the Lord of the Rings movies. Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time is coming to television soon too, apparently.

If I ever write a YA novel, and one day I just might, it’ll be the themes that are the most different from my existing writing. I’ll probably swear a bit less, too, but only a bit.

They’ve heard it all on the Internet already anyway.





Damnation
A Burned Man Novel 3
Angry Robot, May 2, 2017
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

Guest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway
Don Drake is living rough in a sink estate on the outskirts of Edinburgh, doing cheap spells for even cheaper customers while fending off the local lowlifes. Six months ago, Don fled from London to Glasgow to track down his old girlfriend Debbie the alchemist.

With the Burned Man gradually driving him mad, Don meets with an ancient and mysterious tramp-slash-magician, with disastrous consequences. Now his old accomplices must step in to save Don from himself, before he damns himself for good this time.

File Under: Urban Fantasy [ Fallen So Far | Smacked Up | Devil Don’t Care | Hell or Heaven ]




Previously

Drake
A Burned Man Novel 1
Angry Robot Books, January 5, 2015
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

Guest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway
Hitman Don Drake owes a gambling debt to a demon. Forced to carry out one more assassination to clear his debt, Don unwittingly kills an innocent child and brings the Furies of Greek myth down upon himself.

Rescued by an almost-fallen angel called Trixie, Don and his magical accomplice the Burned Man, an imprisoned archdemon, are forced to deal with Lucifer himself whilst battling a powerful evil magician.

Now Don must foil Lucifer’s plan to complete Trixie’s fall and save her soul whilst preventing the Burned Man from breaking free from captivity and wreaking havoc on the entire world.

File Under: Urban Fantasy [ One Last Hit / Both Ends Burning / Going Underground / London’s Finest ]


See Qwill's Review here.



Dominion
A Burned Man Novel 2
Angry Robot, November 1, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 336 pages

Guest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway
In the tunnels deep under London, the Earth Elementals are dying.

Hunted by something they know only as the Rotman, the Elementals have no one trustworthy they can turn to. Enter Don Drake, drunken diabolist and semi-reformed hitman, and an almost-fallen angel called Trixie.

When Don learns that Rotman is actually the archdemon Bianakith, he knows this is going to be a tough job. The fiend is the foretold spirit of disease and decay whose aura corrupts everything it comes near, and even the most ancient foundations of London will crumble eventually. Now Don, Trixie and his ever-annoying patron the Burned Man have to hatch a plan to keep Bianakith from wiping out the Elementals and bringing down the city. But the Burned Man has other plans and those may have dire consequences for everyone.

The past never stays buried, and old sins must be atoned for. Judgement is coming, and its name is Dominion.

File Under: Urban Fantasy [ The Devil You Knew / Deeped & Down / Great Irresponsibility / London’s Burning ]


See Qwill's Review here.





About Peter

Guest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway
Peter McLean was born near London in 1972, the son of a bank manager and an English teacher. He went to school in the shadow of Norwich Cathedral where he spent most of his time making up stories.

By the time he left school this was probably the thing he was best at, alongside the Taoist kung fu he had begun studying since the age of 13. He grew up in the Norwich alternative scene, alternating dingy nightclubs with studying martial arts and practical magic.

He has since grown up a bit, if not a lot, and spent 25 years working in corporate IT. He is married to Diane and is still making up stories.

You can find Peter online at his website, on Twitter @petemc666 and on Facebook.





The Giveaway

What:  Three sets (three winners - 1 set each) of the Burned Man Novels Drake, Dominion and Damnation by Peter McLean from the publisher. INTERNATIONAL

How:
  • Send an email to theqwillery . contests @ gmail.com [remove the spaces]
  • In the subject line, enter “Burned Man“ with or without the quote marks.
  • In the body of the email, please provide your name and full mailing address. The winning address is used only to mail the novel(s) and is provided to the publisher and/or The Qwillery only for that purpose. All other address information will be deleted by The Qwillery once the giveaway ends.
Who:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address.

When:  The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on June 4, 2017. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

Romantic Fantasy Starter Kit - Giveaway!Review and Giveaway: The Night Dahlia by R.S. BelcherGiveaway: The Child by Fiona BartonThe Precious Dreadful by Steven Parlato - Giveaway!Review and Giveaway - Sinless by Sarah TarkoffThe Last Wolf by Maria Vale - Excerpt and GiveawayExcerpt from Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake and GiveawayBEA 2017: TOR Books presents Leading Women in Science FictionGuest Blog by Victoria Thompson and Review and Giveaway of Murder in the BoweryGuest Blog by Peter McLean, author of the Burned Man Novels, and Giveaway

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