Thursday, February 28, 2013

Interview with Jess Macallan - Stone Cold Revenge Blog Tour - and Giveaway - February 28, 2013

Please welcome Jess Macallan to The Qwillery as part of the Stone Cold Revenge Blog Tour Stone Cold Revenge, the 2nd in Jess' Set in Stone series, was published on January 20th.

TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery.

Jess:  Hi, and thanks so much for having me here today! This is always one of my favorite blog stops.

TQ:  Thank you. We're always happy to have you visit!

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

Jess:  It’s a toss-up between making color-coded spreadsheets to keep track of info on my books, and that I don’t pick actual people or pictures to base my characters on. There are some gorgeous people out there to choose from if I needed inspiration, but I prefer to create them in my head. It’s awesome to hear who people picture when they read my books. The color-coding thing is my attempt at organization, though I spend time on picking the right colors than entering information.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Jess:  I used to be a pantser all the way, but I’d call myself more of a hybrid—a plotser. I love the freedom of starting a book in the middle or the end and letting the story grow organically. But I’ve also learned the value of outlining my characters and a few critical plot points to keep myself on track. I approach each story a little differently, but my personality is definitely pantser. Winging it is more fun.

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

Jess:  I’m a recovering perfectionist, and it’s challenging to remember not every day will be a great writing day, and other days need to be all about being a mom. I used to strive for balance, but realized there’s no magic formula because life happens and things pop up when you least expect them to. I have to continually remind myself to take each day as it comes and do the best I can. A secret stash of chocolate helps immensely.

TQ:  What inspired you to write the Set in Stone series, Stone Cold Seduction and Stone Cold Revenge?

Jess:  An idea, a whim, and a dose of inspiration. The first draft of Stone Cold Seduction came together pretty easily. Whenever I start a book, I usually have a character or single scene I see vividly in my head, and I try to flesh it out to see what would happen. My muse was thankfully cooperative with this series, and I’ve been surprised by new characters and plot twists along the way. Elle isn’t the typical kick butt heroine. She wants a normal life with a great guy, and her life is so full of complications and unwanted paranormal issues it seems like an impossible dream. I took that idea and ran with it.

TQ:  Why Gargoyles?

Jess:  They’re one of a few types of paranormal creatures who haven’t been shown as much love as they deserve. I thought they had the potential to be fun with a sexy twist. I also didn’t have anything new to add to angels, demons, vampires, or werewolves as protagonists. I love the mystery and purpose behind gargoyles as protectors. Even though many people consider them to be creepy or ghoulish, they aren’t always. And some of them are incredible works of art. Like Jax. *winks*

TQ:  Tell us something about Stone Cold Revenge (Set in Stone 2) that is not in the book description.

Jess:  Elle’s anti-fairy godmother, Luna, throws a wrench in Elle’s plans. Elle doesn’t know if she’s there to help or complicate things, and she’s definitely late to the party. Also, as Elle gets bits and pieces of her memory back, she learns her past is about to come back and haunt her. Her father might not be the worst thing she has to face.

TQ:  In the series so far who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

Jess:  So far, Luna has been the easiest to write. She’s got a big personality in a little package, and lacks the filter most of us employ between our brain and mouth. I had a lot of fun writing her character and dialogue. The hardest to write is Jedren, Elle’s father. He’s so cold and power hungry, it makes getting into his head difficult. I don’t know if my dad has read the books, but many of his friends have, and he gets teased about being the inspiration for Jedren. He’s not, but my family now worries when they’ll show up in my books. That kind of leverage is good. *grins*

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Stone Cold Revenge?

Jess:  I have two favorite scenes, and I’ll keep this short to avoid spoilers: the first is when she chooses her mate. The second is when her father officially declares her as his heir and she’s forced to use her abilities. That was a tough scene to write, but so important for what’s going to come for her. I wish I could say more, but I hope readers will read the book to see for themselves.

TQ:  What's next?

I’ve temporarily switched gears. I’m finishing up school for holistic nutrition and am writing a non-fiction book about wellness and living your best life. I’m also working on a steamy contemporary I hope to have news on as far as a contract and release date in the next month or so.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Jess:  Thanks so much for having me here today! I love to chat with readers, and hope you’ll connect with me on | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | JessMacallan |

About Set in Stone

Stone Cold Revenge
Set in Stone 2
Entangled Edge, January 20, 2013
eBook, 266 pages

Forced by her maniacal father, the king of the shadow elves, to live in his house and train to become his heir, newly minted princess of the paranormal Elleodora Fredricks doesn’t think things could get much more complicated. On the outs with her gargoyle love interest, Jax, and confused about her relationship with her childhood sweetheart, MacLean the phoenix, Elle knows her fate decrees that her powers will manifest themselves in full on her twenty-eighth birthday, which is quickly approaching…

With help from two long-lost family members, some long-forgotten memories, and even her long-gone mother, Elle discovers there’s more to being part shadow elf than she ever knew. But will she be able to harness her unique abilities in time to take revenge on her enemies? For Elle, it’s all in a day’s work…

Stone Cold Seduction
Set in Stone 1
Entangled Edge, January 20, 2013
eBook, 254 pages
(previously released in Trade Paperback )

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

And only reading her fate can fix that.

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

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

About Jess

Jess lives in the Inland Northwest with her husband and three children. She thrives on creative chaos. Curiosity drives her to try new things as often as possible. When not writing or chasing trouble, she teaches yoga, writing classes, reads, experiments with new recipes, and gardens. The only things she takes seriously are chocolate, tea and world domination. But mostly chocolate.

Website  :  Facebook  :  Twitter  :  Goodreads

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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Guest Blog by Suzanne Palmieri, author of The Witch of Little Italy - February 27, 2013

Please welcome Suzanne Palmieri to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs. The Witch of Little Italy will be published on March 26, 2013.

Finding Magic.....

On March 26th 2013 (next month!) my novel The Witch of Little Italy will hit the shelves. It will be at all the major booksellers, at Target, at independent bookstores. It's been a truly magical experience and I feel so-- charmed.

One of the things that people have asked me about my novel, is how I created the subtle-- yet very present magic in the characters. Some call it world building...
Not me.
My life has always had magic in it. Not the kind you think of right away, not the romantic sort of woozy magic that we think about when we say things are "Magical". No, I had real magic. Good and bad. Black and White. Green, mostly...

Kitchen Magic.

It was always obvious that my stories would have a magical realism bent, because I was brought up that way.

In the kitchens of my childhood there was magic. Real, honest to goodness spell crafting. Garden under the moonlight. Oil in water on New Years Eve to remove and evil eye. Curses. (Yes, curses...)
But fun things too!

Want to know the sex of the baby you are carrying? Who needs an ultrasound? Put your wedding ring on a chain and have let one of my Great Aunts dangle it in front of your stomach.
She always got it right.

Sick? Make sure the "patient's" bed is made with white sheets. All white. Mustard plasters. Menthol. Tea and honey and lemon. Prayers. Who needs a doctor?
Rub down a fever with rose water and rubbing alcohol. Say the Rosary.

Because my mother was a child of the Sixties (hippie, spiritual, flower of a woman) and my Grandmother was a first generation Italian American... I was brought up with a certain kind of Pagan/Catholicism steeped in magical traditions.

So when my characters needed magic (to help or harm), It was easy for me to give them the things I already knew. I simply gave them the gifts that so many people in my life gave to me.

It's not a matter of believing something or not. It's a culture. A way of life.

I was a sad and lonesome child, but I knew, early on, that I was a daughter of the sea. My mother would bring me to the ocean and that's where I remembered, under the water, that I was a mermaid.

There's nothing salt water can't cure. There's nothing the sun won't bleach out of you. You can't hide from sand.


None of us live without it. We just don't look hard enough for it. Turn around. I'm right here! And I have a few spells for you. Just take a peek inside my book!

About The Witch of Little Italy

The Witch of Little Italy
St. Martin's Griffin, March 26, 2013
Trade Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

In Suzanne Palmieri’s charming debut, The Witch of Little Italy, you will be bewitched by the Amore women. When young Eleanor Amore finds herself pregnant, she returns home to her estranged family in the Bronx, called by “The Sight” they share now growing strong within her. She has only been back once before when she was ten years old during a wonder-filled summer of sun-drenched beaches, laughter and cartwheels. But everyone remembers that summer except her. Eleanor can’t remember anything from before she left the house on her last day there. With her past now coming back to her in flashes, she becomes obsessed with recapturing those memories. Aided by her childhood sweetheart, she learns the secrets still haunting her magical family, secrets buried so deep they no longer know how they began. And, in the process, unlocks a mystery over fifty years old—The Day the Amores Died—and reveals, once and for all, a truth that will either heal or shatter the Amore clan.

You may read an excerpt from The Witch of Little Italy at the Macmillan site here.

About Suzanne

Suzanne Palmieri (AKA Suzanne Hayes) is an author, a teacher, and the mother of three little witches.

Her debut novel THE WITCH OF LITTLE ITALY will be published by Saint Martin's/Griffin on March 26, 2013, and has sold internationally. Her co-authored novel, I'LL BE SEEING YOU (written as Suzanne Hayes) will be published by Mira books on May 28, 2013, and has also sold internationally.

She lives by the ocean in Connecticut with her husband and three darling witches. Suzanne is represented by Anne Bohner of Pen and Ink Literary.

Website  :  Facebook  :  Twitter -  @thelostwitch

Cover Revealed - A Cursed Embrace by Cecy Robson - and Giveaway - February 27, 2013

Today The Qwillery is sharing the cover for A Cursed Embrace by Cecy Robson as part of A CURSED EMBRACE Cover Reveal Blitz 2013!!   Without further ado, the cover ...

A Cursed Embrace
Weird Girls 2
Signet Eclipse, July 2, 2013
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 368 pages

Celia Wird and her three sisters are just like other twentysomething girls—with one tiny exception: They are the products of a curse that backfired and gave each of them unique powers that made them, well, a little weird.…

After Celia Wird and her sisters help master vampire Misha save his family, their powers are exposed to the supernatural community of the Lake Tahoe region. But fame comes at a price, and being “weird” isn’t always welcome.

To make matters worse, Celia desires the love of Alpha werewolf Aric, but his pack is bent on destroying their relationship to preserve his pureblood status. And once weres start turning up dead—with evidence pointing to the vampires—she must face the prospect of losing Aric forever. But the chaos only masks a new threat. An evil known as the Tribe has risen—and their sights are set on Celia and her sisters.

Sealed with a Curse
Weird Girls 1
Signet Eclipse, December 31, 2012
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 368 pages

Celia Wird and her three sisters are just like other 20-something girls—with one tiny exception: they're products of a backfired curse that has given each of them unique powers that make them, well, weird…

The Wird sisters are content to avoid the local vampires, werebeasts, and witches of the Lake Tahoe region—until one of them blows up a vampire in self-defense. Everyone knows vampires aren't aggressive, and killing one is punishable by death. But soon more bloodlust-fueled attacks occur, and the community wonders: are the vampires of Tahoe cursed with a plague?

Celia reluctantly agrees to help Misha, the handsome leader of an infected vampire family. But Aric, the head of the werewolf pack determined to destroy Misha's family to keep the region safe, warns Celia to stay out of the fight. Caught between two hot alphas, Celia must find a way to please everyone, save everyone, and oh yeah, not lose her heart to the wrong guy—or die a miserable death. Because now that the evil behind the plague knows who Celia is, it’s coming for her and her sisters. This Wird girl has never had it so tough.

The Weird Girls
Signet Eclipse, December 4, 2012

Celia Wird and her three sisters are just like other 20-something girls—with one tiny exception: they're products of a backfired curse that has given each of them unique powers that make them, well, a little weird…

The Wird sisters are different from every race on earth—human and supernatural. When human society is no longer an option for them, they move in among the resident vampires, werebeasts, and witches of the Lake Tahoe region. Could this be the true home they’ve longed for? Um, not quite. After the sisters accidentally strip a witch of her powers in a bar brawl, they soon realize the mistake will cost them. Because to take on a witch means to take on her coven. And losing the battle isn’t an option.

Includes a preview of the first full-length novel in the Weird Girls series, Sealed with a Curse—as well as introductions to the Weird World, and a letter from the author.

About Cecy

Cecy (pronounced Sessy) Robson is an author with Penguin's SIGNET ECLIPSE. She attributes her passion for story-telling back to the rough New Jersey neighborhood she was raised in. As a child, she was rarely allowed to leave the safety of her house and passed her time fantasizing about flying, fairies, and things that go bump in the night. Her dad unwittingly encouraged Cecy's creativity by kissing her goodnight wearing vampire fangs. Gifted and cursed with an overactive imagination, she began writing her Urban Fantasy Romance Series, Weird Girls, in May 2009. THE WEIRD GIRLS: A Novella and SEALED WITH A CURSE are now available. The second novel in The Weird Girls Series, A CURSED EMBRACE, releases July 2, 2013.

Wesbite : Twitter : Facebook : Goodreads


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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

2013 Debut Author Challenge Update - Cover Revealed - The Lives of Tao by Wesley Chu - February 26, 2013

The cover has been revealed for The Lives of Tao by Wesley Chu. It's out on April 30th (US/Can) in Mass Market Paperback and eBook from Angry Robot Books.  The cover art is by ARGH! Oxford.

When out-of-shape IT technician Roen woke up and started hearing voices in his head, he naturally assumed he was losing it.

He wasn’t.

He now has a passenger in his brain – an ancient alien life-form called Tao, whose race crash-landed on Earth before the first fish crawled out of the oceans. Now split into two opposing factions – the peace-loving, but under-represented Prophus, and the savage, powerful Genjix – the aliens have been in a state of civil war for centuries. Both sides are searching for a way off-planet, and the Genjix will sacrifice the entire human race, if that’s what it takes.

Meanwhile, Roen is having to train to be the ultimate secret agent. Like that’s going to end up well…

File Under: Science Fiction [ The Tug of War | I Was Genghis | Diary of a Slob | Spy vs Spy ]

I love the cover and the description makes me want to read the novel NOW!

Guest Blog by Peter Higgins, author of Wolfhound Century - February 26, 2013

Please welcome Peter Higgins to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs.  Wolfhound Century will be published in late March 2013 by Orbit Books.


Wolfhound Century is a book about Russia, but the word Russia doesn’t appear in it anywhere. It’s a book steeped in 20th century history – totalitarianism, revolution, modernism, grinding global war, governments that spy on and murder their own citizens – but Lenin and Stalin and Hitler are nowhere mentioned. The world of Wolfhound Century has a detailed geography – a vast continent, a capital city, an endless forest in the east – but it’s not a geography you’ll find in any real-world atlas. And there are things in Wolfhound Century that aren’t in the real world at all, like giants and dangerous sentient rain.

So is it really a book about twentieth century Russia at all? Or is it an SF fantasy thriller sprinkled with Russian-sounding names? And if it is about Russia, why write it as an SF fantasy thriller?

To take the second question first: the answer, for me, is story. A story takes you into a world you can't reach any other way, and you experience that world through characters who are living vividly, intensely, on the edge. Stories put people under pressure, to show you what they’re really like: not just the everyday details of lifestyle and personality, but are they strong? will they take risks and confront their demons? what’s their true capacity for sacrifice or love? And genre stories – any genre, not just SF fantasy thrillers but historical romances, zombies, serial killers, anything – can do this brilliantly, because they go beyond the boundaries. They bend the rules of normality. They're extreme. Genre stories at their best can compress and simplify and take you directly to the heart of new things, raw experience and real emotion.

Wolfhound Century is meant, first and last and always, to work as a story: a thriller, an investigation, a race against time, a struggle against the overwhelming power of the state. A story of what it means to be human. The Russian-ness of the setting – artists and dissidents, informers and political police, the endless steppe, the rolling birch forests – are there to let the story do its work. But they’re also there to give it depth and meaning. The setting should be more than just stage scenery.

So how is Wolfhound Century about what happened in Russia and central Europe in the twentieth century, if it doesn’t mention Soviet Russia?

I’ve said that genre stories bend and compress and break the rules of what can actually happen, to bring out rawness of character and feeling. It can work in the same way with place and history. When you’re building a different world, you can change reality to get to the essence of things. You can pack a lot into a small space. Go to extremes.

The world of Wolfhound Century – marching crowds, propaganda posters and slogans, radio, cinema, newspaper articles, modern art, the smells in the street, the food they eat – is based on long hours of research, but the reality behind it is changed, distorted, magnified. Re-imagined. It’s not historically authentic in any literal sense. The ruling regime, against which the heroes struggle to win the right to be themselves, has an ideology, but it’s not called communism, and it’s never described in any detail. The historical Soviet Union and the real Stalin are in there, as a kind of undercurrent, a dark shape that reaches the surface from time to time.

You don’t need to know anything about 20th century Russia to read Wolfhound Century but some of that dark history is inside it, drumming away like an engine, if you want to look for it.

About Wolfhound Century

Wolfhound Century
Orbit Books, March 26, 2013
Hardcover and eBook, 380 pages

Inspector Vissarion Lom has been summoned to the capital in order to catch a terrorist --- and ordered to report directly to the head of the secret police. A totalitarian state, worn down by an endless war, must be seen to crush home-grown terrorism with an iron fist. But Lom discovers Mirgorod to be more corrupted than he imagined: a murky world of secret police and revolutionaries, cabaret clubs and doomed artists. Lom has been chosen because he is an outsider, not involved in the struggle for power within the party. And because of the sliver of angel stone implanted in his head.

About Peter

Peter Higgins read English at Oxford University and Queen's, Ontario. He was a Junior Research Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford and worked in the British civil service. His short stories have appeared in Fantasy: Best of the Year 2007, Best New Fantasy 2, Asimov's Science Fiction, Fantasy Magazine, Zahir and Revelation, and in Russian translation in the St Petersburg magazine Esli. He lives with his family in South Wales.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Interview with Francis Knight, author of Fade to Black - February 25, 2013

Please welcome Francis Knight to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Guest Interviews. Fade to Black (Rojan Dizon 1) will be published on February 26, 2013 by Orbit.  You may read Francis' Guest Blog - Women in SFF and how they shaped my life - here.

TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery.

Francis:  Thanks for having me. It’s a pleasure to be here

TQ:  When and why did you start writing?

Francis:  I started briefly in 2003. I was struck down with ME and desperately bored of daytime TV, and couldn’t afford many books. So I tried my hand at writing down some of the stories in my head. Sadly, the ME got worse and I had to give up for 3 years, but came back to it in 2007 and decided to do it properly.

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

Francis:  I have to have everything set out before I start. Tea has to be there, definitely! I can write almost anywhere though, I don’t need silence, although if my husband is watching a film in the same room…Also, I don’t stop during drafting. Instead I insert notes such as XXthis pub needs a nameXX or XXresearch guns! Could he hit that from here?XX and go back, search for XX and fix those later. First, I just need to get the story out, or I get bogged down and don’t get anywhere.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Francis:  A pantser, definitely. I start with A Character in A Situation and go from there. I usually have an idea about tone or atmosphere, and perhaps a detail or two about the world. Everything else grows as I write it.

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

Francis:  Not procrastinating for sure! I’m fine once I sit down and get the first couple of sentences out, but getting to that point…my husband says he can tell when I’m at a tricky section of the book, because I start doing housework with more zeal than usual.

TQ:  Describe Fade to Black in 140 characters or less. 

Francis:  Fantasy noir – Bladerunner with mages instead of replicants. Dark and cynical, with a twisted kind of hope.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Fade to Black?

Francis:  Like most of my ideas, it wasn’t just one thing. A combo of wanting to write something different (for me anyway) – first person, male viewpoint. Add in a non fiction article I read, a random comment on a forum, various other influences and bang. It’s never just one inspiration for me – it’s when they all get together and mash up that it gets fun.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Fade to Black?

Francis:  Not much, to be fair, other than all the fiction I’d read previously – researching story if you will. I did a little into early guns and electricity, that’s about it.

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

Francis:  Rojan was the easiest. He just kind of fell out of me. It probably helps that we’re both cynical – me not so much as him, I’m glad to say! But it did mean I got to unleash my inner snark. Jake was perhaps the hardest. She’s a very self contained character, but underneath…she’s burning with injustice, not for her, but for the people she loves. At the same time, she’s desperate for approval from the Goddess she believes in utterly. She’s survived a lot, but what it’s left her is very messed up in the head.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Fade to Black?

Francis:  I think the scenes where Rojan meets Pasha and Jake, though any scene with Dendal in was hugely fun to write.

TQ:  What's next?

Francis:  Oh, I’ve got a couple of projects on the go, but nothing I can talk about yet! Possibly more stuff set in the same world…

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Francis:  Thank you!

About Fade to Black

Fade to Black
Rojan Dizon 1
Orbit, February 26, 2013
Trade Paperback and eBook, 384 pages

From the depths of a valley rises the city of Mahala

It's a city built upwards, not across - where streets are built upon streets, buildings upon buildings. A city that the Ministry rules from the sunlit summit, and where the forsaken lurk in the darkness of Under.

Rojan Dizon doesn't mind staying in the shadows, because he's got things to hide. Things like being a pain-mage, with the forbidden power to draw magic from pain. But he can't hide for ever.

Because when Rojan stumbles upon the secrets lurking in the depths of the Pit, the fate of Mahala will depend on him using his magic. And unlucky for Rojan - this is going to hurt.

The cover for Before the Fall (Rojan Dizon 2), which will be out in June:

Last to Rise (Rojan Dizon 3), the final novel in the trilogy, will be published in November 2013.

About Francis

Francis Knight was born and lives in Sussex, England. When not living in her own head, she enjoys SF&F geekery, WWE geekery, teaching her children Monty Python quotes, and boldly going and seeking out new civilizations.

Website : BlogTwitter @Knight_Francis

The View From Monday - February 25, 2013

Happy last Monday in February! There are many books out this week after a few light weeks. You may find a printable PDF shopping list for this week's releases here.

There are four debuts out this week:

Gideon's Angel by Clifford Beal,

Dreams and Shadows by C. Richard Cargill (Fiction Debut),

Fade to Black (Rojan Dizon 1) by Francis Knight,


The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow by Rita Leganski.

Clifford Beal, Francis Knight and Rita Leganski are featured in the 2013 Debut Author Challenge.

From the 2012 Debut Author Challenge featured authors - Winterblaze (Darkest London 3) by Kristen Callihan and Froggy Style (F***ed Up Fairy Tale 2) by J.A. Kazimer.

From the 2011 Debut Author Challenge featured authors - Devil May Care (Speak of the Devil 2) by Patricia Eimer

February 26, 2013
The Isis Collar (tp2mm) Cat Adams UF - Blood Singer 4
Oz Reimagined: New Tales from the Emerald City and Beyond John Joseph Adams (ed)
Douglas Cohen (ed)
F/SF - Anthology
Edge of Dawn Lara Adrian PNR - Midnight Breed 11
The Death of Antagonis David Annandale SF - Warhammer: 40,000: Space Marine Battles
Gideon's Angel (D) Clifford Beal HistF
The Teleportation Accident Ned Beauman Hist/N/SF
The Golden Age of Death Amber Benson UF - Calliope Reaper-Jones 5
Angels of Vengeance (h2mm) John Birmingham AH/PA/Th - Without Warning 3
Existence (h2mm) David Brin SF
Wards of Faerie (h2mm) Terry Brooks F - The Dark Legacy of Shannara 1
The Lord of Castle Black (ri) Steven Brust F - Viscount of Adrilankha 2
Winterblaze Kristen Callihan PNR - Darkest London 3
Dreams and Shadows (Fiction D) C. Robert Cargill F
Path of the Incubus Andy Chambers F - Warhammer: Dark Eldar 2
The Third Gate (h2mm) Lincoln Child H/Th
The Savage Boy (e) Nick Cole SF
Van Horstmann Ben Counter F - Warhammer Heroes
Guardian of Night Tony Daniel MSF
Devil's Bargain Tony Daniel SF - Star Trek: The Original Series
Eve of Chaos (ri) Sylvia Day UF - Marked 3
Mortal (tp2mm) Ted Dekker
Tosca Lee
F - Book of the Mortals 2
How To Seduce an Angel in 10 Days Saranna DeWylde PNR - 10 Days 3
The Road of Danger (h2mm) David Drake SF - Lt. Leary 9
Devil May Care Patricia Eimer PCom - Speak of the Devil 2
A Crown Imperiled (h2mm) Raymond E. Feist F - Chaoswar Saga 2
Immortally Embraced Angie Fox UF - Monster M*A*S*H 2
Heart of the Demon Cynthia Garner PNR - Warriors of the Rift 3
Black City Christina Henry UF - Black Wings 5
Hell to Pay Matthew Hughes UF - Hell and Back 3
Secrets of the Fire Sea (h2mm) Stephen Hunt F/SP - Jackelian 4
Froggy Style J.A. Kazimer F/FT/Hu - F***ed Up Fairy Tale 2
The Order (h2mm) Nate Kenyon F - Diablo III (game tie-in)
The Wind Through the Keyhole (ri) Stephen King F - Dark Tower
Fade to Black (D) Francis Knight UF - Rojan Dizon 1
The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow (D) Rita Leganski F
Age of Voodoo James Lovegrove SF - Age of 5
Warriors (h2tp)
George R.R. Martin (ed)
Gardner Dozois (ed)
F/SF - Anthology
Shadow on the Sun (ri) Richard Matheson H
First Casualty (e) (ri) Mike Moscoe SF - Jump Universe 1
Mountain Echoes C.E. Murphy UF - Walker Papers 8
Between Two Thorns Emma Newman UF - Split Worlds 1
Last Days Adam Nevill H
The Forerunner Factor (tp2mm) Andre Norton SF - Forerunner Omnibus
Shadow Blizzard (h2mm) Alexey Pehov F - Chronicles of Siala 3
The Last Jedi Michael Reaves
Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff
SF - Star Wars
Dead Letter Day Eileen Rendahl UF - Messenger 3
Immortal Ever After Lynsay Sands PNR - Argeneau 18
The Dog King (e) John Scalzi SF - The Human Division 7
Beauty Awakened Gena Showalter PNR - Angels of the Dark  2
Trickster Jeff Somers UF - Ustari Cycle 1
The Mongoliad Neal Stephenson et al. F - Mongoliad 3
Seer: A Foreworld Sidequest (Kindle e) Mark Teppo F - Foreworld Saga
Night Resurrected Joss Ware PNR - Envy Chronicles 6

February 27, 2013
Superheroes Rich Horton (ed) SF/F - Anthology

February 28, 2013
The Monkey's Other Paw: Revived Classic Stories of Dread and the Dead Luis Ortiz (ed) H - Anthology
The Willful Princess and the Piebald Prince Robin Hobb F
The Very Best of Barry N. Malzberg Barry N. Malzberg SF/F - Collection

D - Debut
e - eBook
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
ri - reissue or reprint
tp2mm - Trade to Mass Market Paperback

AH - Alternate History
F - Fantasy
FT - Fairy Tale
H - Horror
HistF - Historical Fantasy
Hu - Humor
MSF - Military Science Fiction
N - Noir
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PCom - Paranormal Comedy
PNR - Parnormal Romance
SF - Science Fiction
SP - Steampunk
Th - Thriller
UF - Urban Fantasy

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Cover Revealed - Romulus Buckle & the City of the Founders by Richard Ellis Preston, Jr. - February 24, 2013

Yesterday, Richard Preston Ellis, Jr. tweeted about the cover for his upcoming debut, Romulus Buckle & the City of the Founders. This is the first novel in Richard's The Chronicles of the Pneumatic Zeppelin series. The cover art is by Eamon O'Donoghue.

I really like this cover. It has gorgeous Steampunk elements. I can also tell the novel is set in California by the Sunset Blvd street sign. Sunset Blvd is mostly in Los Angeles.

More about this author and novel in the future.

Romulus Buckle & the City of the Founders
The Chronicles of the Pneumatic Zeppelin 1
47North, July 2, 2013
Trade Paperback and eBook

In a post-apocalyptic world of endless snow, Captain Romulus Buckle and the stalwart crew of the Pneumatic Zeppelin must embark on a perilous mission to rescue their kidnapped leader, Balthazar Crankshaft, from the impenetrable City of the Founders. Steaming over a territory once known as Southern California – before it was devastated in the alien war – Buckle navigates his massive airship through skies infested with enemy war zeppelins and ravenous alien beasties in this swashbuckling and high-octane steampunk adventure. Life is desperate in the Snow World – and death is quick – Buckle and his ship’s company must brave poisoned wastelands of noxious mustard and do battle with forgewalkers, steampipers and armored locomotives as they plunge from the skies into the underground prison warrens of the fortress-city.

Captain Romulus Buckle must lead the Pneumatic Zeppelin and its crew of never-do-wells on a desperate mission where he must risk everything to save Balthazar and attempt to prevent a catastrophic war which could wipe out all that is left of civilization and the entire human race.

What do you think?

2013 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - February 2013 Winner

The 2013 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars winner for February is Gillian Philip's Firebrand with 33% of the votes cast. Firebrand (Rebel Angels 1) was published by Tor Books in the US on February 19, 2013.  The cover artwork is by Steve Stone.

The final results:

The February Debut Covers

Thank you to everyone who voted, Tweeted, and participated. The 2013 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will continue soon with voting on the March 2013 Debut covers.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Interview with Ariel Djanikian, author of The Office of Mercy - February 23, 2012

Please welcome Ariel Djanikian to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. The Office of Mercy, Ariel's debut novel, was published on February 21, 2013.

TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery.

Ariel:  Thank you! It’s great to be here.

TQ:  When and why did you start writing?

Ariel:  I’m the daughter of a poet, so I guess it’s no surprise that I began writing poems as a tiny kid. (One was about worms getting smooshed on the sidewalk after a rain.) As I got older, I would write stories and illustrate them, and take immense pleasure in these creations. Eventually, writing became an essential way to speak to and listen to the world—and that hasn’t changed!

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

Ariel:  I write my first drafts by hand—preferably in spiral Mead notebooks with yellow, college-ruled paper. About four years ago, these notebooks went out of stock, and I was devastated. When they returned, I ordered boxes of them. Now I have enough notebooks to last me till the end of time. (Also, the Mead company thinks I’m running an office supply company out of my house.)

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Ariel:  Early on, I’m a plotter. There’s a special thrill in writing an outline, having the possibilities and complications mapped out. Inevitably, though, the story will take a direction that I couldn’t have foreseen until once I’m deep into the world.

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

Occasionally I have days when I throw out many, many pages and start fresh on a chapter or story. Invariably, I end up with something much better, but those moments are still frustrating.

TQ:  Describe The Office of Mercy in 140 characters or less.

Ariel:  Natasha lives in a happy, idyllic utopia that “mercifully” annihilates people outside. She’s always believed killing is right. Until now.

TQ:  What inspired you to write The Office of Mercy?

Ariel:  I’m obsessed with imagining the perfection of science, law, and how we organize our days. The America-Five settlement grew out of these thoughts. It’s a bright, cheerful safe haven in a messy, chaotic universe. Of course, it’s a quietly sinister place too. And that’s what really pulled me into this novel: A young woman who can see through the polish to the horror that keeps her society in tact.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for The Office of Mercy?

Ariel:  Early on I read popular biology books about achieving immortality. I also would turn to writing by people like Peter Singer and Steven Pinker when I was thinking about ethics: how we know that good is really good. But once I got going, the research stopped. You have to trust yourself to internalize the good stuff.

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

Ariel:  When writing Natasha I could let my feelings, attractions, repulsions, and curiosity guide me. She’s determined and vivacious, and I felt a real connection to her. Jeffrey (who is her mentor and love interest) was harder. He’s more secretive with his feelings. Though now, with the book finished, I feel extremely close to him.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in The Office of Mercy?

Ariel:  It’s Natasha’s job to track and eventually kill people who live outside the settlement. At one point, everyone’s celebrating one of these mercy killings, or “sweeps,”—there’s even a nice dinner and music—but Natasha finds herself strangely unable to engage in the fun. It’s the moment Natasha realizes that she’s being pulled in two directions: between her loyalty to the settlement’s cause and her grief over the death of innocent people.

TQ:  What's next?

Ariel:  I’m writing a prequel to The Office of Mercy, the story of the young, spirited iconoclasts who created the Storm. It’s been exciting and a little scary too, because I know the book has to end with an act that’s so huge and devastating.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Ariel:  Thank you for having me!

About The Office of Mercy

The Office of Mercy
Viking Adult, February 21, 2013
Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages

A thrilling debut of a postapocalyptic world for fans of The Hunger Games

Weaving philosophy and science together into a riveting, dystopian story of love and adventure, The Office of Mercy illuminates an all-too-real future imagined by a phenomenal new voice in fiction.

Twenty-four-year-old Natasha Wiley lives in America-Five—a high-tech, underground, utopian settlement where hunger and money do not exist, everyone has a job, and all basic needs are met. But when her mentor and colleague, Jeffrey, selects her to join a special team to venture Outside for the first time, Natasha’s allegiances to home, society, and above all to Jeffrey are tested. She is forced to make a choice that may put the people she loves most in grave danger and change the world as she knows it.

The Office of Mercy is speculative fiction at its best with a deeply imagined, lush world, high-stakes adventure, and romance that will thrill fans of Suzanne Collins, Margaret Atwood, Justin Cronin, and Kazuo Ishiguro.

About Ariel

Ariel Djanikian is a Philly native who's also lived in Ann Arbor, MI, Madison, WI, and Irvine, CA. Her newly adopted city is Chapel Hill, NC, where she lives with her husband and daughter. Her writing can be found in The L Magazine and The Paris Review Daily. The Office of Mercy is her first novel.

Website  :  Twitter @ArielDjanikian  :  Goodreads

Friday, February 22, 2013

Guest Blog by Joshua Alan Parry, author of Virus Thirteen - February 22, 2013

Please welcome Joshua Alan Parry to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs. Virus Thirteen, Joshua's debut, will be published on March 26, 2013.

Pink Girl in a Cruel World

Modest is not normal.

In my novel, Virus Thirteen, you will meet a young woman named Modest. She is a frail, albino-white girl, with pink hair, and the vertical pupils of a feline. Her hair is not dyed and her eyes are not contact lenses. Her troubles are more than skin deep, however; much deeper - on the molecular level. She is the end result of genetic tampering that is rampant in the futuristic setting of this book.

Mankind has long had this problem. Since poor Prometheus gave us fire, perhaps misguidedly judging by our track record, we have been systematically using new technology, untested, with the utmost vigor, blinded to potential complications. Someone invents radiography? We take x-rays of each other until we're full of cancer and growing extra limbs. Atomic energy? We put it in convenient packages and drop it on cities. Genetic engineering? We engineer Modest.

Modest is one of the many freaks living in the post-genetic modification era. Thanks to government regulations, no longer are genetic engineers allowed to modify the human genome for purely aesthetic purposes. They are limited to genetic manipulations that are medically indicated, like the insertion of cancer-proof genes and the removal of genetic defects. Tormented by her body, her bizarre eyes, and hair, Modest is reminded daily of the choices she did not and could not make. I’m referring to multi-generational consent, a novel idea, only necessary in a universe of altered genomes, where a parent’s choice infringes on their child’s. Altered genes would pass down through the generations like drunken tattoos, each generation cursing their predecessors, “Why do I have this hideous tattoo of a frog on a lily pad beneath my right breast? Gee…thanks a lot great-grandma!”

To call this "playing God" is cliché, but a suitable one. There is only one thing certain: once the technology exists, the unscrupulous among us will use it. Then and only then, will the negative consequences be apparent. It’s not entirely science fiction either. We can already select which embryo we would like to carry to conception based on its genetic material. You can even choose the sex of your baby. If these options were available, would you pick your child's gender? What about their eye, hair, or skin color? Do you have the right to? If I picked a specific trait, then my child could certainly be unhappy about it; but if my child received such trait by random chance, only the dice of probability is to blame. I wonder if selecting certain traits would lead to an inevitable dissatisfaction with the child? When I pick green eyes and black hair, will I regret not sticking with the classic Aryan formula of blue eyes and blonde hair? I know, at this point, asking these questions is similar to asking which type of flying car will best suit my personality. They are silly questions today, but perhaps these things are not as far off as we think. In that case, I’ll take a black, flying convertible with extra rocket boosters and I think I’ll leave my children’s genetic future to fate.

About Virus Thirteen

Virus Thirteen
Tor Books, March 26, 2013
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

An irreverent and contagious thriller from debut author Joshua Alan Parry

Scientists James Logan and his wife, Linda, have their dream careers at the world’s leading biotech company, GeneFirm, Inc. But their happiness is interrupted by a devastating bioterrorist attack: a deadly superflu that quickly becomes a global pandemic. The GeneFirm complex goes into lockdown and Linda’s research team is sent to high-security underground labs to develop a vaccine.

Above ground, James learns that GeneFirm security has been breached and Linda is in danger. To save her he must confront a desperate terrorist, armed government agents, and an invisible killer: Virus Thirteen.

About Joshua

JOSHUA ALAN PARRY is a medical resident at the Mayo Clinic. He received his medical degree from the University of Texas Medical School at Houston and holds a B.S. in molecular and cellular biology from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was also captain of the ice hockey team. Over the years, he has worked as a guide for at-risk youth in the Utah wilderness, a metal worker in Montreal, a salmon canner in Alaska, and a molecular genetics intern. He was raised in Keller, Texas.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Interview with Evie Manieri, author of Blood's Pride, and Giveaway - February 21, 2013

Please welcome Evie Manieri to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. Blood's Pride was published on February 19, 2013 in the US. You may read Evie's Guest Blog - Female Characters in Fantasy: Sword Length Isn't Everything - here.

TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery.

Evie:  Thank you very much for having me! It’s a real pleasure to be part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge.

TQ:  When and why did you start writing?

Evie:  I started writing when I was a kid, and I never really stopped. Our elementary school librarian had this lovely idea to laminate little ”books” written by students, and make cards for the card catalogue so that other students could check them out just like real books. My book was about dragons. I’d like to think that my writing has improved since the second grade. My drawing… not so much.

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

Evie:  I try to keep my hands busy while I’m not actually typing, to stay focused while I’m thinking. Sometimes I’ll keep my knitting in my lap and pick that up; if the knitting project is too complicated, I use worry beads, or the little felt sculpture of a fox my daughter got me for Christmas. I can’t write sitting at a desk, either. I sit curled up in an armchair or on one side of the couch, like a cat, eating Pepperidge Farm Goldfish from a bowl. Yep, that’s me - a typing, Goldfish-eating cat with borderline OCD.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Evie:  I’m a plotter in denial. I tell myself I can’t work unless I know exactly where the story is going, but then I never stick to what I’ve worked out, not even remotely. I’m also constantly revising backwards as I go along. It’s not an efficient process, and I don’t recommend it. It’s like knitting a sweater while someone’s unravelling it from the other end.

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

Evie:  The biggest challenge is to stay emotionally connected to my work. It can be very hard to keep myself open in that way, particularly when my outside life is stressful, or when I’m dealing with something that’s too close to my own unresolved stuff. At the same time, that’s when the best work happens. The instant I lose that closeness – when the writing becomes about moving chess pieces around on a board - I get frustrated. Those are the times when I should just take a break, but I’m usually too stubborn to do it.

TQ:  Describe Blood's Pride in 140 characters or less.

EvieBlood’s Pride is about an epic rebellion, but one in which the action takes place on a very personal level – or put another way, a fantasy novel as told by an unabashed shipper.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Blood's Pride?

Evie:  Blood’s Pride really started with the character of the Mongrel. I had this image of her appearing out of the desert. I didn’t really know much about her story at first, but I felt very connected to her, and knew it was one I wanted to explore. She and her world evolved together after that, along with other characters who had their own stories to be told. The more deeply I went into it, the more discoveries I made, until it all wove together strand by strand.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Blood's Pride?

Evie:  I researched different things here and there – details about biology, climate, flora and fauna, all sorts of other things that came up as I was working, often only tangentially related because I was curious or procrastinating – but since this is a wholly invented world, my research informed my choices more than it dictated them.

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

Evie:  Frea was by far the easiest character to write. She is a juggernaut, all straight lines and fury. She doesn’t allow herself the slightest bit of introspection, so her resolve never wavers. Harotha was the hardest because she’s just the opposite. She’s conflicted in so many ways, at any moment she could go off in a dozen different directions. Harotha and I also share some significant flaws, and that makes it harder to stay open to her than some of the others.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Blood's Pride?

Evie:  One of my favorites is Isa’s scene in her mother’s tomb. It’s a pivotal scene about 2/3 of the way through, so I can’t give away much more than that. It was extraordinarily difficult to write from her point of view at that moment, but as a result, I think the scene is as raw and visceral as it should be. That’s also the scene when Daryan shows us the man he’s capable of being: compassionate, intelligent and with all the strength of his convictions. I fall a little more in love with him every time I read it.

TQ:  What's next?

Evie:  I’m working on the next book in the Shattered Kingdoms series, Fortune’s Blight. It picks up right where Blood’s Pride ends, and opens up an even wider world for us to explore.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Evie:  Thank you so much for letting me stop by!

About Blood's Pride

Blood's Pride
Shattered Kingdoms 1
Tor Books, February 19, 2013
Hardcover and eBook, 528 pages

Rising from their sea-torn ships like vengeful, pale phantoms, the Norlanders laid waste to the Shadar under cover of darkness. They forced the once-peaceful fisher folk into slavery and forged an alliance with their former trading partners, the desert-dwelling Nomas tribe, cutting off any hope of salvation.

Now, two decades after the invasion, a rebellion gathers strength in the dark corridors of the city. A small faction of Shadari have hired the Mongrel, an infamous mercenary, to aid their fledgling uprising—but with her own shadowy ties to the region, she is a frighteningly volatile ally. Has she really come to lead a revolution, or for a more sinister purpose all her own?

This thrilling new epic fantasy is set in a quasi-Medieval Mediterranean region, drawing together the warrior culture of Vikings, the wanderlust of desert nomads, and the oracles of ancient Greece. Evie Manieri's Blood's Pride is an intricate, lush fantasy novel full of taut action, gut-wrenching betrayal, and soaring romance.

About Evie

Evie Manieri has always been fascinated by intricacy. Her studies in medieval history and theater inform her writing, and when not weaving together the threads of her plots, she can be found creating airy lace shawls or singing Renaissance polyphony. The only thing she likes more than a thunderstorm is a really violent thunderstorm. Evie lives in New York City with her husband, her daughter, a drowsy dog and a badly spoiled parakeet.

Website : Facebook : Twitter

The Giveaway


What:  One commenter will a hardcover copy of Blood's Pride (Shattered Kingdoms 1) from The Qwillery.

How:   Answer The Qwillery's Question: 

One of your favorite novels with a strong female main character or characters?
Which cover do you prefer - US or UK?
US                                                       UK
Please remember - if you don't answer the questions your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)   Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

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

There are a total of 3 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry) and Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry).  This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook or Twitter mentions. You MUST leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Thursday, February 28, 2013. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*