Tour of Ever After: an anthology review.

tOUR EA

Hello, today I have an another amazing anthology for you from the Fellowship of Fantasy.

Book Description:

36427032_2003913979653615_2197345443757686784_nRescue a princess, meet a mermaid, win your reward.

 The authors of the Fellowship of Fantasy tackle fairy tales from once upon a time to happily ever after. Explore twists on old tales and brand new magical stories. Meet feisty mermaids, friendly lampposts, and heroes who just might be monsters themselves.

 This fourth anthology from the Fellowship of Fantasy will lead you on a quest for entertainment and storm the castle of your imagination. So make a wish and enter the deep dark woods to find stories that will make you laugh, shiver, and maybe even fall in love.

 The best part is it’s free to download! (Paperback will cost you though.)

Amazon Purchase Link: https://www.amazon.com/Tales-Ever-After-Fellowship-Anthology-ebook/dp/B07FFMHM8M/

Books2Read Universal Link: https://www.books2read.com/u/bwYKry

Goodreads Listing: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40788623-tales-of-ever-after

The fellowship is also hosting: a Rafflecopter giveaway U.S. Only: (All books are paperbacks, and possibly signed.)

If you are not U.S. that’s okay there’s an International: a Rafflecopter giveaway (All books are ebooks of the winner’s file format of choice)

Now on to my review. I am not sure why I  agreed to review the whole collection. The stories are so short that you can’t really delve into them without spoiling it. But in keeping with my brand of turning your gears, I will provide the full list of stories with their description and why I think it will turn your gears.

Tales of Ever After Author Graphic

 *Story descriptions were written by the author of each story.*

 Cinders by Kendra E. Ardnek

When the fairy Jalia receives a plea for her aid, it seems a routine Cinderella rescue – until she only finds the family’s pet cats.

 Why it turned my Gears: The Cinderella mythos has been done to death. I thought it was impossible to produce an original Cinderella story, I was so wrong. Cinders will take your expectations and turn them on their head. Wonderfully original plot combined with lovable and witty characters.

 At The Corner of Elm & Main by H. L. Burke

A sweet-natured lamppost dreams of seeing the world. When magic grants his wish, how will he use it? 

Why it turned my Gears: An original tale about an ordinary everyday object that is granted mobility for one night. This doesn’t turn the thinking gear so much as the feeling gears. It has a heart touching ending with a satisfying payoff.

 Tears of the Sea by Savannah Jezowski

When Le Rae indulges her fascination with the forbidden sand walkers, she discovers more than danger in the shallow waters.

 Why it turned my Gears: An original tale reminiscent of The Little Mermaid, but the best part is that it isn’t a romance. It makes you think, simultainiously about being willing to open your mind to new ideas and people who are different from you, while also learning to be content with where you’re at and what you have. At least that was my take away.

 Steelhand by Ashley Capes

When a man with a mechanical hand hears a woman’s ethereal voice calling for help, he must brave the steel forest to rescue her from a foul Alchemist.

 Why it turned my Gears: Steam Punk Sleeping Beauty need I say more? Okay a little bit more. In the story the hero is told to take three random objects with him on his quest: a lemon, a tin soldier and an Axe. You’re never going to figure out how they get used. Very cool plot elements bring originality to a familiar favorite.

 King or Beggar by D. G. Driver

When a king’s spoiled, conceited daughter refuses and insults every nobleman asking for her hand in marriage, he stops giving her a choice.

 Why it turned my Gears: This is a retelling of a little known fairy tale called King Thrushbeard. As a child, the dollar store had fairytale VHS tapes. The one I watched to death was King Thrushbeard. Why I loved it I really can’t say. It might have had something to do with me figuring out the twist and being delighted that I was right. Thank you D. G. Driver for bringing this pleasant childhood memory back to life.

 The Girl Who Talked by Birds by Kristen S. Walker

A young girl’s already isolated existence is worsened by the emergence of strange abilities.

 Why it turned my Gears: Wonderful original tale about an ordinary girl who discovers she is special. Really cool human and bird interactions. I love that the birds are still very bird like and aren’t personified too much. I also enjoyed that it was light hearted in tone. Anyone who likes “origin” stories should enjoy this one.

 The Princess and the Stone-Picker by Sarah Ashwood

“Those whose eyes are nearest to the ground are those who see its treasures.” A humble stone-picker’s mysterious remark sends a spoiled princess pursuing answers.

 Why it turned my Gears: The inciting phrase of this story, can be taken literally or figuratively. Either way you interpret it, this princess’s discovery is one that we can benefit from.

 Wake the Moon by Annie Louise Twitchell

Demons laugh, light fades, and Jesse must battle his own darkness to wake the sleeping girl.

 Why it turned my Gears: Wake the moon is at first glance, based on sleeping beauty, but it has some native American overtones, so I’m not sure if there is another fable at play here. Either way this short story reads like a novel in terms of character growth and the amount of nuance added to the protagonists everyday life. I mean, Jesse listens to Owl City. Okay maybe I just gave it high marks for name dropping my favorite artist.

 The Greatest Adventure by J.M. Hackman

A beautiful slave girl, hidden Fire Diamonds, and a wily dragon give Firebrand Aideen Siriol his greatest adventure yet.

 Why it turned my Gears: I love Aideen. He has spirit and drive, and the princess may be dead, but gosh darn it, he came to rescue somebody. So that’s what he does.

 Third Princess by Emily Martha Sorensen

The youngest of three always succeeds after the older two fail. But what if the older two aren’t willing to fail?

 Why it turned my Gears: Okay so to love this story you have to understand that there is a fairy tale troupe of three sisters, and the oldest two are always either too stuck up or too lazy or too independent to be the one the kingdom needs. As the oldest of three I hate this troupe. So when I saw that, Third Princess was going to turn this troupe on it’s head I was excited. Also the oldest princess in this story is totally me.

 A Week after Midnight by Alex McGilvery

The prince is so shy he needed a ball to find a wife. What will he do when she moves in?

 Why it turned my Gears: I really loved the Prince being an introvert in this story, it explains a lot about the Cinderella tale. The story is unique in this collection, in that for an anthology titled Tales of Ever After, it’s the only one that picks up after “happily ever after.”

 Being Seen by Gretchen E. K. Engel

Just because Ilmara is invisible, doesn’t mean she doesn’t exist.

 Why it turned my Gears: If I was asked to choose one story from this collection to be turned into a movie. My choice would be, Being Seen. It invokes visuals in my mind that beg to be seen (pun intended). An invisible girl who dyes her hair and skin just to be accepted, it’s a powerful message.

 The Quest for a Wide-Awake Princess by Lia London

Prince Jack needs to find a suitable princess, but he’d settle for one who’s not snoring.

 Why it turned my Gears: If it’s not sleeping princesses, it’s one’s who want to sleep but can’t. This story is the funniest of the lot. Told in the grand tradition of farce, Puns abound and the gags are over the top. I really love the ending though. It’s a good twist to this original take on the sleeping princess troupe.

 How to Hide a Prince by E.J. Kitchens

Princess Fiona is destined to save a prince, but would kissing a talking frog free a prince, or curse them both?

 Why it turned my Gears: Who is the prince? The enchanted frog, or the boy who stopped Fiona from kissing it? This is the question that kept me guessing throughout the whole story. And the answer is as satisfying as the asking.

 Believing Fairytales by Arthur Daigle

Some fairy tales are true. The dangerous ones are partly true.

 Why it turned my Gears: What a twist! I want everyone to read this anthology just for this story. This is an original story about Nestor a young man who works at an ancient shrine. And when bandits break in searching for a hidden relic Nestor warns them that they have the story all wrong. IT will make you think and feel things that you never thought you could think or feel.

 The Loathly Princess of Edimor by L. Palmer

Princess Selene always gets her desire. When she asks to escape a marriage by transforming into a swan, the witch who helps her has other plans.

 Why it turned my Gears: The last is certainly not least in this fairy tale collection. From what I can tell L. Palmer’s story is an original story, but loosely inspired by the swan princess. I could be wrong. Anyway, the story is slightly humorous, with a good witch who just can’t get people to listen to her, a young man who finds the old woman his family has taken in preferable to the princess he is engaged too, and a princess betrayed, by literally everyone. But hey she had it coming.

 Also I forgot to mention that there is a Comment Giveaway:

The person who leaves the most comments across the blog tour will receive the chance to read special sneak peaks from several of the authors’ upcoming works!

This is usually where I would post the full blog schedule, but this doesn’t really need to be any longer so if you want to go back through and leave comments on any other post you can access them all from here: Tales of Ever After Tour. 

Not sure what to comment about?

Which of the Tales of Ever After are you most excited to read?

What is your favorite Fairy Tale? Did they forget to include it in the anthology? Tell us about it.

Mythic Orbits 2

 

Today’s blog post is super exciting for me. Not only do I get to tell you about the release of a great speculative fiction anthology, I have a story in it.

Mythic Orbits vol.2 contains my first published story under the pen name C. O. Bonham.

 

Mythic Orbits 2

This anthology collected the best available speculative fiction short stories written by Christian authors. Science fiction, fantasy, LitRPG, and other genres are included, whether the stories have openly Christian themes or characters or not, without requiring the stories to have any specific theme in common. This collection is clean fiction—no profanity, graphic sexuality or extreme violence.

In a series praised by both Tosca Lee, Kathy Tyers, and Kerry Nietz,  this anthology of eleven speculative fiction stories by Christian authors shines in science fiction, fantasy, horror, and LitRPG genres. Featuring Kat Heckenbach’s “Mark the Days,” this collection has something for every speculative fiction fan.

 

 

My contribution is the short story “Recalled from the Red Planet.”  The quick pitch is Left Behind on Mars. The long pitch is, this is in response to that guy who said,  “Revelation proves that man will never colonize space.” I don’t remember his name now, but it annoyed me enough to write a story about it.

If that isn’t tempting enough, this anthology also features stories from such greats as, Steve Rzasa, C.W. Briar and Kat Heckenbach.

Also I just discovered that I can include the Kindle sample right here in the body of my post. (Complete accident, I will never be able to repeat this.) Just hit the free preview button and enjoy Mythic Orbits vol. 2.

 

Kindle edition sells for: $2.99

The paperback pending. But I will let you know once it’s available.

I really hope you’ll give Mythic Orbits vol. 2 a try. If you do would you consider leaving a review on Amazon or Goodreads if you have an account. They really do help books get visablity.

And if you would like to give Vol. 1 a try you can find it at the link below:

Spice Bringer Cover Reveal

Today I bring you a tale of magic and mystery. The story is the magic; the mystery is, what will the cover look like?

Spice Bringer by H. L. Burke is the next release due out by the always awesome and never disappointing, Uncommon Universe Press. I am super excited for it. Read below to find out why?

From the Back cover:

cover reveal graphicA deadly disease. A vanishing remedy. A breathless journey.

 All her life, Niya’s known she will die young from the fatal rasp. She survives only with the aid of vitrisar spice and a magical, curmudgeonly fire salamander named Alk. Then an ambitious princess burns down the vitrisar grove in an effort to steal Alk so she can claim her rightful throne. Joined by Jayesh, a disgraced monk, Niya and Alk must flee to the faraway Hidden Temple with the last vitrisar plant, or all who suffer from the rasp will perish.

 But even as Niya’s frustration and banter with Jayesh deepen to affection, the rasp is stealing away her breath and life.

 For a girl with limited time and a crippling quest, love may be more painful than death.

***

Author PictureAuthor Bio:

 Born in a small town in north central Oregon, H. L. Burke spent most of her childhood around trees and farm animals and was always accompanied by a book. Growing up with epic heroes from Middle Earth and Narnia keeping her company, she also became an incurable romantic.

An addictive personality, she jumped from one fandom to another, being at times completely obsessed with various books, movies, or television series (Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, and Star Trek all took their turns), but she has grown to be what she considers a well-rounded connoisseur of geek culture.

Married to her high school crush who is now a US Marine, she has moved multiple times in her adult life but believes that home is wherever her husband, two daughters, and pets are.

 Social Media Links:

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/hlburkewriter/

Facebook Reader Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/hlburkereaders/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/hlburkewriter

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/burkesdragons/

Website: http://www.hlburkeauthor.com/

***

Doesn’t that sound amazing? It has everything! Adventure, danger, love against all odds, and a snarky animal sidekick. You want to know where you can buy it right?

What You want to see the cover first? You know You’re not suppose to judge a book by the cover. . .  right?

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Fine but I’m going to make you work for it.

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Well maybe not that hard.

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Behold!

SpicebringerCoverLarge

Isn’t it gorgeous? I bet you want to read it now don’t you?

Well it’s not out yet but you can pre-order at the links below:

Amazon Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Spicebringer-H-L-Burke-ebook/dp/B07FBRF6HD

Barnes & Noble Nook: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/spicebringer-h-l-burke/1129054660?ean=2940155709763

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/spicebringer

Apple iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1409446712

But you should really do this one:

Uncommon Universes Press – autographed paperback preorder: https://uncommonuniverses.com/product/spicebringer-autographed-paperback-preorder/

Regularly 17.99, autographed paperback preorders are 14.99 with free shipping discount (free shipping to US locations only). What a deal!

“But if we pre-order it, when can we have it?” you ask with big puppy dog eyes.

3DTrioGraphic - Preorder Announcement

“It Releases August 28th 2018!” I reply.

Don’t worry Spice Bringer will be back with a blog tour and pre-release awesomeness.

Renegade Skyfarer: a Dive in Review.

 

Welcome back, I’ve got another Dive in Review for you this time it’s a book that features steampunk goodness.

About the Book

The airship crew saved Ben’s life from a dragon, of all things.

When Ben wakes up, he has no memory of his family, his home, or how he got to this strange world. All he knows is what his new crew members tell him: the magical Barrier that protects their land is weakening. Unless they find the artifact that can repair it, all of Terrene will be destroyed and enslaved by the enemies beyond.

But when Ben suspects that danger may lurk closer than dragons or sky pirates, he has to decide: stay and fight with the airship crew, or focus on regaining his lost memory? If he leaves, he risks losing his newfound friends–but if he stays, he might never return home.

Welcome to Terrene–where dragons exist, the past haunts, and magic is no myth.

Welcome aboard the Sapphire.

AmazonBarnes & Noble

 

About the Author

During the day, Becky is a stay at home mom of two active little boys. When she has ‘free time’, she enjoys reading, writing, baking and sewing.

After many years of creative writing classes, writing fanfiction drabbles and daydreaming, it was high time to start writing her husband Mike’s story. She dove into the world of Terrene and hasn’t looked back—except for when she runs out of dark chocolate.

Any free time not spent in Terrene is typically expended on hosting dinner and game nights, running amok with the two little monkeys or watching nerdy movies with Mike.

WebsiteFacebookTwitterInstagramAmazon Author Page

Dive in review of: Renegade Skyfarer

Renegade Skyfarer by R. J. Metcalf is the first book in a new steampunk fantasy series.

There was so much going on in this book that I don’t know where to start.

I’ll start with the dragons because this what sucked me into the story. I loved the different dragon species. It’s like How to Train Your Dragon, each species has a special trait. But even better, they are also described like dinosaurs. Yes that’s right, this isn’t just a story with dragons. It’s like Steampunk Jurassic Park.

The flying ones are even called Terrors and Dactyls. Do you get it?

There are multiple view point characters. Captain Slate, his daughter Jade, the mysterious Blade, and an amnesiac named Ben.

My favorite was Ben, he is super sweet and his past is this huge mystery that just keeps you guessing. Also since everyone had to explain things to him, it was a great way to introduce world building without bogging down the narrative. I loved watching him get his memory back and learning his past. And yes the pay off is really good.

My second favorite character is Jade. Her father’s younger sister married a prince so that makes them nobility or something. He drags her to balls and tries to teach her to be a lady. Jade is never happier than when she’s soaring the skies working on her Airship’s engines. She doesn’t want to be a lady. She is most certainly not trying to marry a prince.

Being a princess is the last thing on her mind. She wants Zak, a dragon hunter on her father’s crew. Too bad he treats her like a kid sister. And while I generally dislike love triangles, I have to confess, I approved when she started hanging out with Ben.

This novel has so many secrets that even if you guess some of them there will still be twists a plenty to surprise you. Five stars, A+, and can I have the next book now.

Let’s Party!

Calling all book readers! Join author RJ Metcalf as we chat about her fantasy novel RENEGADE SKYFARER on July 6th from 8 PM to 10 PM EST (7 PM CST and 5 PM PST).

Grab your favorite drink and snack and be prepared for a fun time of chatting with RJ, games, and giveaways.

Special guests S D Grimm and Jamie Foley, Authorwill also be sharing their books and joining in the fun.

RSVP Here

 

Giveaway Time!

Want to dive into a new world or in need of a good book? Enter to win a signed print copy of Renegade Skyfarer, a Stones of Terrene notepad and pen, Notebook of Writing, and bracelet! (US only.)

>>> Entry-Form<<<

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, July 2nd

Tuesday, July 3rd

Wednesday, July 4th

Thursday, July 5th

Friday, July 6th

Saturday, July 7th

Monday, July 9th

Tuesday, July 10th

Wednesday, July 11th

Thursday, July 12th

Friday, July 13th

Saturday, July 14th

Monday, July 16th

 

Dive in Review of Priceless

 

Priceless Blog Tour

Today I’m excited to share a review of Janeen Ippolito’s new novella, Priceless. You may remember, not too long ago when I shared the cover revel for this book. Find it here.

Now that the book is out, I can share with you what I thought about it, and how much I loved it. But first important book stuff.

PricelessPriceless Back cover:

 A little ambition can turn into a lot of trouble, even for the city’s wiliest double agent.

 After years of rebel spywork in the dragon-human war, Nula Thredsing is ready to claim her legacy.

 As the Scepter of Commerce’s new liaison to dragons, she’s one step away from the old family seat on the city council. But during her first meeting with dragon diplomat Tiers Sunscaler, they are attacked by rogue dragons—one of them Sunscaler’s former tactical partner, who is bitterly determined to keep the sham war in action and turn the diplomat to his side.

 At the same time, Nula and Tiers discover a startling connection: an embermate bond. While a political marriage suits Nula, the bond’s side effects are obnoxious—and potentially deadly.

 Aided by an unexpected cat-dragon and a mysterious unicorn, Nula and Tiers must track down the rogue dragons before their dangerous bond tears them apart.

 Fortunately, Nula is used to impossible odds—and this time, she has a dragon on her side.

A steampunk fantasy novella with espionage, cat-dragons, snark, and a side of romance.

Author bio:

 Author Bio Pic for Uploads - FictionJaneen Ippolito believes words can (and should) transform worlds. She writes urban fantasy and steampunk, and creates writing resources, including the reference book World Building From the Inside Out and the creative writing guide Irresistible World Building For Unforgettable Stories. She’s an experienced teacher, editor, author coach, and is the leader of Uncommon Universes Press, a small science fiction and fantasy publishing house. She’s also the cohost of the podcast Indie Book Magic. In her spare time, Janeen enjoys sword-fighting, reading, pyrography, and eating brownie batter. Two of her goals are eating fried tarantulas and traveling to Antarctica. This extroverted writer loves getting connected, so find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and at her website: janeenippolito.com

 Social media links:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JaneenIppolito

Website: https://janeenippolito.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/janeenippolitocreative/

Facebook Reader Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/168444147251310/

Instagram: janeen_ippolito

Buy it at Uncommon Universes Press:  https://uncommonuniverses.com/product/priceless

If you buy it from UUP it’s autographed!

Amazon link:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CMG669P/

Other Online Distributors: 

https://uncommonuniverses.com/books/priceless-an-ironfire-legacy-novella/

Add it to your to read list on Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39942270-priceless

Dive in review of Priceless:

Priceless by Janeen Ippolito, takes place after the events of Lawless and should not be read first. Trust me there is a lot that hinges on the events of the first book. Priceless is also a novella, so it’s a fast read, and it will help with the Ironfire legacy cravings between Lawless and Faithless.

The main character is Countess Nula Thredsing , a minor character from lawless. I wasn’t sure if I would like this book as I didn’t care for her character in the first book. It turns out she just doesn’t like coming in second. Once she takes center stage her imposing personality becomes confidence and drive. Also her back story makes her much more sympathetic.

The best part of the story was all of the new elements to the world building. So you know how Lawless introduced us to Dragon Shifters? Well Priceless has Unicorn shifters. Like how awesome is that? Um . . . Very!

There is also a Cat dragon. Yes you read that right. A cat who is also a dragon. And this little dude is very sneaky. His name is Freckles and I want one.

He looks like this and you can meet him at the Indie Book magic facebook party tonight. (June 15, 2018). Click here to RSVP.

Launch Party That Includes Priceless

Dive in Review: All That We See or Seem

Hello, more fabulous content via Blog tours is coming your way soon.

But first a review of an amazing book that I read.

About the book:

All That We See Or Seem.jpg

 

Every night, seventeen-year-old Reeve Lennox finds herself under a noose.

By day she is a lady of Acarsaid’s royal house, daydreaming of adventure and love. But every night in sleep she wanders through a nightmarish city, an invisible witness to the screeches of monsters and the screams of their victims. Her only consolation is Bran, a battle-torn young man with a selfless heart and eyes that reflect the stars. 

Yet while Reeve falls deeper into her dreams, in truth she is engaged to Arden, a mercurial nobleman who has long been cured of his belief in love and breathes fire and flattery like other people breathe air.

Torn between two lives, Reeve struggles to remember what’s real. Until night and day collide, with a revelation that threatens all of Acarsaid.

Buy at: Amazon/Barnes & Noble/Kobo/Apple

Don’t forget to add it to your To-read shelf on Goodreads

About the author

 

Kristina Mahr head shotKristina Mahr devotes her days to numbers and her nights to words. She works full-time as an accountant in the suburbs of Chicago, where she lives with her two dogs and two cats, but her true passion is writing. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, reading, and waking up at the crack of dawn every weekend to watch the Premier League.

 

Dive In Review: All That We See Or Seem

“All that we see or seem may be no more than a dream.” this is the Edgar Allen Poe quote that opens the book. This is the perfect quote to inspire the title for this novel.

All that we See or Seem by Kristina Mahr is a unique take on the YA trope of “The dream Boy.”

Reeve is not a princess, but as the Kings niece, she’s the closest thing her kingdom has to one, which of course makes her marriage of political importance. Just when Reeve resigns herself to marriage to someone who at least won’t bore her to death, she meets Bran. To bad he only exists in her dreams.

But as she falls more in love with Bran at night it becomes harder to fake enjoying her engagement by day.

Do not let the Adventure, danger and mystery fool you. This book is first and foremost a romance. And it won’t take you till the end of the book to figure out who Reeve chooses.

If anyone wants to know why I say that, it’s because Reeve is not nearly curious enough. She asks very few questions about why this is happening to her. She takes almost no action and just goes along with it. She is just so caught up in the romance of it all. I really wanted her to be investigating and questioning people, trying to figure it out. But instead of trying to find out if Bran is even real she seems to think it’s pointless because she would never be allowed to marry him anyway.

So just be warned, there is plenty of mystery danger and magic, but this is above all a book about a young girl who just wants to be loved in a world where marriage little more than a political device.

All that we see or seem is a sweet YA romance with a dash of fantasy, until the last quarter of the book where the danger really starts to ramp up, and the answers to the burning questions start to come out.

Unfortunately the ending makes things difficult for everyone. Especially me, because I need to know what happens next.

*Though not part of the official blog tour, I was given a copy of this book for review purposes. The opinions expressed here are my own.*

 

 

After Blog Tour and a FANtastic Interview

Today I bring you a book from the darkside of fantasy, one that deals with death and the problems that arise when the dead do.

About the Book

“Some people might say that there are worse fates than death. In some worlds, perhaps that may well be the case. But in mine, it would be a lie. There is no greater horror than that which comes after death.”

On the streets of an ancient city, with creepers wandering at will and a mysterious assassin leaving corpses all over Pandorum, a young Spook with a dark secret will do anything to keep his brothers safe, even from forces that threaten to tear them apart from within. While others are searching for impossible cures from outlawed Spinners, Conrad Ellis III does not believe in fairy tales and miracles. But when he discovers a strange girl with shrouded ties to the Assassin, Eli is forced to leave the streets he loves and travel into the very heart of Pandorum in order to save a member of his family. With his health failing and the danger escalating, there is no escaping the inevitable truth. Today, he may hunt creepers.

Tomorrow, he just might be one.

Purchase on Amazon

Because this book is a little bit outside of my usual tastes I decided to pick the authors brain a bit to see what led her down this dark rabbit hole of walking dead.

FANtastic Interview with Savannah Jezowski:

Just reading the description is enough to give me chills. This is such an intriguing premise. Is there any one thing that you can recall sparking the idea for After, or the story world in general?

 YES. My husband and I were in a book store and all the books were about zombies. I wanted to write a book from a Christian point-of-view that explored the concept of the undead.

Yes there certainly is a lot of Zombie fiction out there, and almost none of it is Christian friendly. I think what troubles many Christian readers about speculative fiction, and horror in general, is when the stories are obviously not how things work. Example: the dead do not really walk. How does After support a Christian worldview?

 After is a fantasy world with mild elements that relate back to my Christian worldview. After takes place in a world before the Redeemer has come to change things. It’s a dark world. People are floundering in their faith. The emperor is oppressive. People are dying in darkness and wandering the Neverway. There is a Divine spiritual being called the Ever Father who orchestrates things behind the scenes. There is a man with strong magical gifts (called a Spinner) that is hinted to be something more than what he claims. Magical gifts could be compared to talents rather than blatant supernatural abilities. There is also a distinction made between the rights kind of magic, i.e. natural magic vs. dark magic. There are lots of little things that could relate back to my Christian worldview, actually.

 How do you imagine creepers fitting into a spiritual afterlife? Are they just reanimated bodies with no souls? Or are their souls trapped inside with/without a hope for redemption?

 Creepers are my idea what “living hell” might be like. When people die outside the Ever Father’s plan, their souls remain trapped in their decaying bodies and they wander the world with only fractured memories of their past. Always alone. Always in pain. I know it sounds kind of gruesome, but really it’s more sad. I don’t dwell much on the yucky zombie aspects lol. My main character doesn’t either. He hunts creepers, but he often catches himself feeling sorry for them.

Now that the meaty questions are out of the way, how about some fun?

If you ever got that coveted movie deal who would you cast?

Oh, that’s hard. I have so many favorite actors that would make the short list. I always thought Chris Hemsworth or Jason Momoa would be nice for Conrad. It needs to be someone kind of burly who can pull off a gruff role. For Ivan? I could go a bunch of different ways. For Fen? The girl from Pacific rim would be perfect. She pulled that role off with just the right amount of strength and fragility. And for Victor? Honestly, he’s the hardest of all because he’s so sweet and so innocent. I don’t think I would ever find an actor that I approved of 100%.

After Dream Cast (2)

That sounds like a great cast and I love the graphic you made.

Are you prepared for the Zombie apocalypse? Where would you make a stand and what is your weapon of choice?

Goodness, no, I’m not prepared. I’d probably hide in my basement with a baseball bat and die within the first few days.

Baseball bats can be an effective weapon, don’t underestimate yourself.

You have to live in your story world for one month: How do you pass the time? Do you survive?

Wow. I would love to live in my world, but honestly…it’s a dangerous place most of the time. I would love to spend some time with the Elllis and Jenks boys, but their house is rather cramped and they’re always squabbling. It might be more fun to spend my time at the Manor with Fen and the angels (the ladies of mercy). At least there I know I would be safe and would live long enough to get home again.

And now for the most important question of all: This is book one, what are your future plans for the series?

Wither, in the Five Enchanted Roses collection, is already set in the world of the Neverway. It’s a Beauty and the Beast retelling about some minor characters who show up in After. I’m also working on revisions for the sequel to After, a novella loosely inspired by Red Riding Hood and immediately following the events of Wither. So chronologically, it takes place five years after After. I’m planning to write at least two novellas and two more novels in the story world before moving on to other things.

 Sounds like there is a lot more to look forward too in the world of the Neverway. Thank you for talking to me today and sharing about your book.

About the Author

Savannah Jezowski lives in a drafty farmhouse in Amish country with her Knight in Shining Armor, a wee warrior princess, and two English Springer Spaniels. She is the author of When Ravens Fall and The Neverway Chronicles. Her work has been published in Ray Gun Revival, Mindflights and in the student publication of Fountains at Pensacola Christian College. She is also a featured author in Five Enchanted Roses from Rooglewood Press and Mythical Doorways from Fellowship of Fantasy. She likes books, faeries, writing hats and having tea with her imaginary friends.

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