#BlogTour: Spring by Lele Iturrioz @LeleIturrioz @XpressoTours #Review

I am so pleased to be taking part in the blog tour for Spring by Lele Iturrioz. This is the second installment in the young adult fantasy series Seasons Within and this series is such a fresh take on the genre. You can follow the rest of the tour via Xpresso Book Tours.

If you missed my review of Book One, you can catch it here. Season Within is also 99p for the duration of this tour, so it’s a great time to get started on this series.

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Description

Gaia finally knows who she is and what she’s meant to do. It’s only been a few weeks since the earth element woke in her. Now that she’s embracing her role as Mother Nature, she must journey with her group of power-wielding friends in a race against time to get back home before Azazel reaches them.

With the awakening of a brand new element, her true past with Edan, a dangerous decision that could change the very essence of who she is, and a traitor among her group, the broken road back to Terra will be a test of strength.

After all, even if Gaia doesn’t know it, war is closer than she thinks.

Spring - Tour Banner

Review

I re-read Seasons Within right before picking Spring up, this isn’t something I usually do but I am so glad I did as Lele Iturrioz has created such a vivid and vibrant world by reading both books back to back I was able to become fully immersed and remember all of the details from the first book before discovering what was to come in the second.

Now that Gaia knows who she truly is, and what her destiny is she works with the six to accomplish it. As they make their way to gates that will take them back to Terra, facing the beasts that Azazel sends in their past she realises her true strength.

I will admit to being surprised at how calmly and easily Gaia accepts her fate. She’s 18 and she takes it on with little more than a shrug. I’m not saying this wouldn’t happen but I expected a little more resistance. I’m in my thirties, and that kind of responsibility would send me into a tailspin!

This book despite having some absolutely epic fight scenes which I was completely invested in, was very much about the relationships. Helping us learn more about the people, getting to know them and learn to love them.

Gaia and Edan grow closer, finally, and learn how to navigate between being a couple and their responsibilities within the team and to each other. There are some hilarious moments between them as well as some truly beautiful moments.

Priyam is an epic character, how she fits into this cast of characters is wonderful. Her friendship with the Australian weapon’s expert Floyd is the best thing in this book and I’m rooting for a relationship to blossom between these two.

Pratt is a character I want to know more about, I have no idea if he is trustworthy, but I like him, a lot. I like the way he talks and acts, I find him funny and mysterious and I want to see more of him and I would love to see him interacting with the group, especially given the big fall out with Edan.

There is a lot of focus on nature in this book, but there is a lot when you look between the lines about human nature in this book, about how people treat each other.

My only gripe was that it ended very suddenly, I know it’s part of a series and the story will continue soon, but it just felt like there was no closure on this book.

Many thanks to Lele Iturrioz and xPresso Book Tours for the eARC to review this novel, these were my honest opinions.

Rating

About Lele Iturrioz

Major geek by day, hermit writer by night! Love books, sugar gliders and everything that comes in a delicious taco.

I’m the author of the YA fantasy  series, Seasons Within

I spend my time writing,  planning on  writing, reading, drinking coffee like there was no tomorrow, MMA and chilling with my friends and loved ones.

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Book & Buy Links

TitleSpring
SeriesSeasons Within #2
Author: Lele Iturrioz
Genre: Fantasy | Young Adult
Publisher: Acorn Publishing
Publication Date: 1 September 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback
Pages: 402
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US

#Review: Made in the Image of the Goddess by Chantelle Griffin @Legacy_Zyanthia

Description

Saranon glanced up at the dragons as they flew overhead. The hour of darkness covered them as she watched on. She waited as Pennie examined the stone. It formed part of the shield locking them inside the camp. Shouts rang out on the other side. ‘Is that Galven?’ Pennie asked.

She nodded in reply. A twig broke on the muddy ground. ‘We have company,’ she said.

A lone sorcerer. Just one, but that was enough to give them away. Pennie ran for fear of being caught, while Tasha stood gazing out into the distance, ‘One day that will be us.’

Enter an epic tale of sword and sorcery. More than two hundred years ago a powerful sorceress freed her people then vanished. As time passed truth turned into myth and myth became legend. The time has come again. Saranon must claim her rightful place before Zyanthia falls.

Review

The first book in the Legends of Zyanthia series, Made in the Image of the Goddess see’s Saranaon take on the powers of the Angeon a powerful sorceror. But at just 15 and having been a captive most of her life she struggles at managing the power and now she is exiled from her home and away from her friends and so she needs to find someone to train her and somewhere to call home.

Her quest see’s her crossing borders meeting new people, and running from and to wizards.

Saranon was a wonderful blend of powerful sorcerer and confused teenager. Chantelle Griffin found the balance between the two so that she didn’t become this cocky powerful kid like can sometimes happen in this novel. She was unsure of herself but over time came into her powers and learned what she needed to do.

Different characters came and went through the book and sometimes I felt some were so fleeting that I hope in future books they come back as I really connected with some of them. Anthony and Jedd were two such characters, they both offered Saranon a lot of help at different points in the story and I felt so connected to them and would love to see them again and see their characters develop further.

Pennie and Jacob are childhood friends of Saranon who I think are destined to play a larger role in her story, Pennie especially seems to have her own motives and these don’t necessarily run parallel to Saranon’s but she is an interesting character and I feel like there is a bigger story surrounding Jacob and his involvement with them both.

Mitch is a wizard, a human who can do magic, and he becomes accidentally bonded to Saranon. but it’s not all sweetness and light and he is a few years older than her.  I really liked Mitch and I’m looking forward to learning more about him, I feel like he has a lot of hidden depths and could be the one person who can do the best job at helping Saranon achieve her potential.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, the fighting, the magic, the dragons it all came together in a wonderful introduction to this world and I am really looking forward to what comes next.

A huge thank you to Chantelle Griffin for my signed copy of this novel so that I could read and honestly review it. I will be treasuring it!

Rating

About Chantelle Griffin

Chantelle Griffin - Author ImageTales of sword and sorcery captivated Chantelle from a young age. Reading until all hours of the night to find out what would happen to the characters. There was just one problem the story would finish far too soon. Hidden away in the distant past the life of a fantasy writer began. The real life struggles have been a saga all of their own for author. Chantelle was born in Tasmania, Australia. Her dreams haunted her from an early age. Vivid tumultuous dreams carrying adventure and danger. It took the author into a fantasy world filled with sorcery and treachery. The story continues to captivate her writing.

 

Book & Buy Links

TitleMade in the Image of the Goddess
Series: The Legacy of Zyanthia #1
Author: Chantelle Griffin
Genre: Young Adult | Fantasy | Epic Fantasy | Sword & Sorcery | Magic | Dragons
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 17 March 2017
Review Format: Paperback
Other FormatseBook | Hardcover
Pages:  226
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones | Foyles | Book Depository | Speedy Hen | Wordery

#BookBlitz: When Smoke Rains Down by Cecelia Earl @authorcecelia @shanannigans81 #Giveaway

I am pleased to be a part of this book blitz organised by R&R Book Tours. Check out more about this series below. There is also a giveaway that you don’t want to miss.

Description

In the aftermath of an explosion and Homecoming battle, Julia tries to form some semblance of a routine: work, study, visit her brother. Unable to confide in anyone about her double life of being both human and angel, and fearful she’ll bring death and destruction to those she loves, she pulls away from her family and best friend.

When demons once again start to show up at every turn, seemingly bringing about her brother’s deepening depression, she demands her sword from Nicholas. Ever the stern Guardian Angel, he forbids her from using it. Isolated, she takes protecting her brother into her own hands.

Thrust into a dark world of conspiring demons, Julia is in more danger than she ever imagined possible. To stop evil from spreading and overtaking those she loves, she’ll have to seek out the one person she mistrusts most.

Enter a complex world where humans, demons, and angels collide, all battling to rule the Earth. For readers who enjoy young adult paranormal romance and dark fantasy. Fans of City of Bones, Hush Hush, Unearthly, Halo, and Hidden Wings will be captivated by this unique take on angels and demons.

When Smoke Rains Down is Book Two in the Kingdom Come series. Book Three, the final installment, will be out Summer 2017.

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About Cecelia Earl

Cecelia Earl - Author ImageCecelia Earl graduated with a degree in education and has been teaching ever since. She’s a wife, a mom of three boys, and an owner of a magical laundry pile that never stops growing. She lives near enough to Green Bay, WI that her refrigerator is always stocked with cheese, and the first colors her children learned were green and gold. She’s a teacher by day, a mom always, and a writer in her sleep, but that’s okay because being an author is a dream come true. She writes angel books for young and youngish adults. If you feel young, she writes for you—whether or not you feel particularly angelic.

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Giveaway

  • Giveaway Button$10 Amazon Gift Card

Blitz-Wide Giveaway

Book & Buy Links

TitleWhen Ash Rains Down / When Smoke Rains Down
SeriesKingdom Come
Author: Cecelia Earl
Genre: Young Adult | Paranormal | Fantasy
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 4 January 2017 / 31 May 2017
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback
Pages: 312 / 282
Buy Book 1: Amazon UK | Amazon US
Buy Book 2: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#Review: Legion by Julie Kagawa @Jkagawa @HQstories

Description

The legions will be unleashed. No-one can stand against the coming horde.

After witnessing a powerful sacrifice, Ember Hill knows that nothing she was taught by dragon organisation Talon is true. About humans, about rogue dragons, about herself and what she’s capable of doing and feeling.

In the face of great loss, Ember vows to stand with rogue dragon Riley against The Order of St. George and against own twin brother Dante—the heir apparent Talon, who will soon unleash the greatest threat dragonkind has ever known.

Talon is poised to take over the world, and the abominations they have created will soon take to the skies, darkening the world with the promise of blood and death to those who will not yield.

Review

It is getting hard to write these reviews now without giving anything away from previous books! So, if you haven’t made it this far in the series you can dip back to one of my earlier reviews by using the links here…

Book 1 Talon
Book 2 Rogue
Book 3 Soldier

Picking up right from where we left off at the end of Soldier, Legion is by far the darkest book so far in the Talon series. The anxiety I felt while reading this book was palpable and the feeling of having no idea which direction the book was going to go at any given time was intense.

Julie Kagawa continuously puts our daring characters in some intense and increasingly dangerous situations. As we start to uncover the real plans behind Talon, and why Ember is so important to them.

Only the first book in this series has really felt like a YA novel which has been great for me, the subsequent novels and this one especially have most definitely been urban fantasy with intense fighting and darker storylines. Our characters don’t talk or act like teenagers and I quite often forget their ages until occasionally reminded.

In this novel we are given quite a lot of background from Dante’s perspective to help us understand what happened to make him so loyal to Talon and why he turned on Ember. For me it helped a lot of puzzle pieces slot into place which have been floating around since book one so I was really grateful for the clarification.

As for Ember’s relationship with Riley and Garrett, this book is intense, and while she choose who I hoped she would she does make a decision in this book. Which I am pleased about as the whole love triangle thing was getting a bit tired.

Overall, this is by far my favourite of the series so far, probably because of it’s far more adult and brutal feel, I’m very much looking forward to the next book which I sense may be the last book in the series.

A huge thanks to Julie Kagawa and HQ for the eARC of this book in return for my honest review.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleLegion
SeriesTalon #4
Author: Julie Kagawa
Genre: Urban Fantasy | Young Adult | Romance | Dragons
Publisher: HQ
Publication Date: 25 April 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Hardcover | Paperback | Audio
Pages: 384
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones | Foyles | BookDepositorySpeedyHen

#BlogTour Legacy of the Mind by H.R. Moore @hr_moore @XpressoTours #AuthorInterview #Giveaway

Today I welcome the Legacy of the Mind tour to BrizzleLass Books. Written by H.R. Moore, this romantic fantasy sounds like a great read for young adults and I really wanted to share this novel and the fantastic interview I had with the author. It’s also free on Amazon this week if you fancy picking it up, see the buy links below for more.

Description

Anita has never been ordinary, she’s stuck out like a sore thumb her entire life; not only can she see the energy of others, a rare skill, but she’s won every Body challenge she’s ever entered. So when the powerful, good looking Descendants, Marcus and Alexander, mysteriously arrive in Empire, her difference attracts and keeps their attention.

Once in Empire, the sudden death of ruling Body Descendant, Christiana, sets in motion a number of events; a quest for the treacherous Austin to find the girl Christiana had been looking for; a challenge where Anita stands out more vibrantly than ever before; a perilous dip in the world’s energy; and a dangerous belief among the people that they will never truly be free. Powerful factions soon form within the ruling elite and when a trusted friend and mentor reaches out to ask for Anita’s help, she has to make a choice; help her friend and betray the one she loves, or do nothing and watch the people starve.

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Author Interview

Welcome to BrizzleLass Books and thanks for taking the time

1 Tell us something about you that your bio doesn’t already give away

Um…I have grade 8 singing, love horse-riding, drinking tea (especially whilst eating cake), and gardening, particularly growing vegetables as then I can eat them (seeing a theme?!).

2 You’ve lived in a lot of different places, have they helped influence your inner writer?

Definitely.  I draw a lot of inspiration from the different places I’ve been to or lived in, and often I’ve found going somewhere new can spark a fresh idea or bring out a totally different perspective.

In Legacy of the Mind, Empire and the surrounding area is inspired by small Scottish towns, Kingdom is inspired by St Andrews (where I went to University), and the countryside is inspired by Devon (where I spent most time growing up).  Many places in the Wild Lands are based on either places I’ve travelled to, or on amazing photographs I’ve seen, and this helps me have a really clear vision about the places I’m writing about.

3.Legacy of the Mind is your debut novel, what can you tell us about it?

Legacy of the Mind is for people who enjoyed books like Twilight, Divergent or The Hunger Games.  There’s action and adventure, a good helping of romance, but balanced out by a sinister side and underlying problem for the protagonists to solve.

I wrote it because I love getting swept up in a good YA romance with a solid story line and wanted to see if I could create one too.

4. What would you have done differently within your writing process if you had the chance to write it again?

I would have been more disciplined, especially about starting the next book in the trilogy.  It’s really easy to procrastinate instead of getting on with writing, and there’s something especially daunting / easy to put off about starting a whole new book.  I think I could have cut down the overall writing time considerably if I’d just been a bit stricter!

5. What did you edit out of the book that was good but just didn’t fit?

I planned really carefully before I started writing, so most of the big plot editing happened at this early stage.  I originally had a load more skills and Gods, but quickly realised this would have been really difficult to manage and wouldn’t contribute that much to the story, so whittled it down to three.

6. How do you choose your character names?

It’s a bit like naming a baby – lots of babies!  For Legacy of the Mind, right at the start, I had a brainstorm of all the names I liked and thought appropriate to the world (they had to be relatively traditional and a bit ostentatious for most of the characters) and used that as a list to work from.  For Anita, she had to be a bit more down to earth and ordinary, and Cleo has a more exotic personality, so Cleopatra seemed to fit.  The Gods needed to be removed, so their names have a more ancient, biblical sort of feel to them.

I guess I have an idea of how I want the characters to feel, and the names need to feel right too – it’s more of an art than a science.  And, apparently, I have a preference for names beginning with the letter ‘A’.  I never knew it, but for some strange reason, most of the new names I think up start with ‘A’!

7. Is there a character you particularly love within the novel we should look out for? And why?

Bas.  He’s great and is totally underrated by Anita; it’s just so unfair.  Because of Anita’s perception of him, he can come across as a bit weak, but when you think about everything he does, his position, and the knowledge and skills he has, he’s a really great catch and any girl would be lucky to have him.

8. How long did it take you to write this novel?

About a year.  And then I had to learn about the publishing industry and self-publishing and all the stuff that goes along with it, so it was published a few months after I finished.

9. What does success in the publishing world look like to you?

I think this is a really difficult question as publishing is such a hard industry.  There are so many books being both traditionally and self-published and it’s tricky for any author to get meaningful cut through.  For me, I felt a huge thrill the first time someone I didn’t know read Legacy of the Mind and gave me a 5 star review.  I guess that felt a lot like success!

10. Finally, If you could choose an animal to represent you what would be?

Hmm…tricky.   Maybe a monkey?  Don’t ask me why.

About H.R. Moore

Harriet was born in Germany in 1987, the family returning to the UK, to Dorset shortly afterwards. She lived there until she was 5, her grandfather teaching her the basics of cheating at cards and swindling chocolate, her mother starting to instil a (some would argue) unhealthy relationship with cake, and the neighbours demonstrating that some people don’t understand cherry blossom is there to be picked, mixed with mint and water and sold as perfume.
Then there was Scotland; stealthy guinea pig breeding, riding horses, advanced cards, more cake, then to Devon and school in Exeter. She loved maths in the early years, but by the time she got to A Level, Sociology was her favourite subject, opening her eyes to things she’d never before considered, namely, nobody is really right, nobody is really normal and primary socialisation has a lot to answer for.

At the age of about 12, Harriet started rowing for Exeter Rowing Club. This quickly took over her life and before too long she was clad in lycra, training 6 days a week and competing at events around the country.

After finishing her A Levels, Harriet went to university in St Andrews, studying Philosophy for two years, then switching to Management. She was particularly interested in the ‘people’ elements of her course and especially the areas concerning how people create and react to change. After four very civilised years by the sea, she ventured to London, to foray into the strange world of insurance (surprisingly, more interesting than you might think), where she currently works as a Project Manager.

Harriet has recently moved to Hertfordshire with her husband Chris and baby Atia. When she isn’t doing DIY, writing, editing, eating, taking photos, or imagining how much better life would be with the addition of a springer spaniel, she occasionally finds the time to make hats.

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Giveaway

  • Giveaway Button$20 Amazon gift card
  • ebook copy of Legacy of the Mind

Book & Buy Links

TitleLegacy of the Mind
SeriesThe Legacy Trilogy #1
AuthorH.R. Moore
Genre: Fantasy | Romance | Young Adult
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 2 January 2014
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback
Pages: 261
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#BlogTour: Rise of the Branded by Scott Keen @widopublishing @XpressoTours #GuestPost

I’m so pleased to welcome Scott Keen to my blog today, he has written a great post about how he has developed his worlds, including the maps (you know I love maps, right?). This is a really interesting post that anybody with an interest in fantasy should love. Rise of the Branded looks like a fascinating epic fantasy, and if like me you like to start at the beginning you can pick up book one, Scar of the Downers here.

If you want to follow the rest of the tour you can check out the stops over at Xpresso Book Tours.

Description

Pursued into the wild by the soldiers of Ungstah, former slave Crik and the other freed Downers encounter the magical and terrifying nature of their world. They face spectral Shepherds, man-eating Rukmush, and the ancient giants of the earth. When two of their group are captured, Crik is distraught and powerless.

Meanwhile back in the city, Durgan, former Captain of the King’s Guard who allowed Crik and his friends to escape from Ungstah, is now a Downer, one of the Branded. Amid the murmurings of an uprising among the Branded, Durgan just wants to be left alone to search for his missing son. But in the process, he discovers how dark the powers of Sulfus the king truly are. Durgan must take a stand in the coming war between the Branded and the powerful armies of Sulfus.

To kill any hope of escape for the city’s Branded, the army comes after Crik and his friends to make an example of them. The answers for Durgan, Crik and freedom for all Downers lie hidden in the dark recesses of the Northern Reaches, in the treacherous places Crik and his companions are about to enter.

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Guest Post

Over the years, I’ve written several blogs about the different steps I’ve gone through in building a fantasy world, specifically mine. Frankly, an entire a book could be dedicated to the subject of world-building. For sake of time and space, however, I’ll keep this relatively short.

I remember the day I finished reading The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien. I was in graduate school studying Script & Screenwriting. I was already a fan of Tolkien’s works, but I had never really thought about creating my own fantasy world until I read that book. Here was the whole creation and history of an imagined world that could (and did) spawn countless beloved stories and characters. Magic was interwoven into these myths that had its own order and rules. It all fit! Taking The Silmarillion with the whole of Tolkien’s work, nothing appeared arbitrary. The stories and characters seemed to grow organically.

Now, when I had finished reading the book, I thought to myself, “I could do this. It doesn’t seem too difficult.” Nothing, however, could have been further from the truth. It wasn’t until I started writing fantasy did I discover just how difficult building a world would be.

Rise of the Branded is the second book in the Scar of the Downer Series (the first book being Scar of the Downers). When I began writing this series nearly ten years ago all I had was a character named Crik (though at the time, his name was Child.) The only thing I knew about him was that he was a slave, an untouchable, owned by a cruel master named Kilvar. But the question still begged to be answered: In what kind of world would he live?

Before I could answer that, I needed to figure out one other thing. What was Crik’s story? Once I discovered that, I would build my world around it. So, I asked myself, “What does Crik want?”

The obvious answer was freedom. He wanted to be free from Kilvar and Ungstah, the city in which he lived. But he needed to go somewhere, so I had to give him a place not only to run from, but to run to, and that is when I came up with my first map. I sketched one out in about five minutes. It was very rough indeed, but it was the beginning of something much larger. (The one below was drawn a year or two later.)

The foundation of a house is usually in the dirt. The same goes for world-building.  I had to know where my characters were going. I had to build their homes and histories. So, as the story grew in scope, the world (and map) grew as well.

You can see the progression of the maps over the years.

  

When you look at the maps, the dots are obviously cities or villages. Many of them weren’t put there arbitrarily. As I added places on the map, I did so with an idea of what these places were and how they came about. It’s no different in our own world. Every place has a history, a story, and the same goes for the fantasy world.

Take Wester Village as an example. It is the dot in the middle of the map. In the first chapter of the book, Scar of the Downers, two men, Andevin and Fordon, visit it. I wrote a brief backstory about why this village constructed its wall in a much earlier draft of the book. It was edited out, but it still formed the world. Here is an excerpt:

People of the village began dying in the mountains as they searched for jewels. This led to stories of the mountain men and their dogs that smelled only blood. Fear spread, inducing the people of Wester Village to gather a small army to march north into the mountains. There, a battle took place known as the Battle for the Ice Jewel. The men who fought in it never returned, but stories told in whispers did.

Before long, the number of men who came in search of this treasure declined. The growth of the village stopped and its population waned. Mountain men, growing more confident, roamed the Eastern Foothills and the Koba Valley, slaughtering all they encountered. The village shrunk back in fear and constructed the wall that still stood to Andevin’s day. Two gates occupied opposite ends of the village; one faced west, the other east. However, the wall and gates may have kept out the dogs and the mountain men, but the fear those creatures infused still found a way to enter.

Knowing how your land and cities were born is paramount if you want to create a world. I believe it gives stories their depth and their authenticity, even if the reader never sees it.

About Scott Keen

Scott grew up in Black River, NY, the youngest of three children. While in law school, he realized he didn’t want to be a lawyer. So he did the practical thing – he became a writer. Now, many years later with an MFA in script and screenwriting, he is married with four daughters, two of whom he home schools.

 

Book & Buy Links

TitleRise of the Branded
Series: Scar of the Downers #2
Author: Scott Keen
Genre: Fantasy | Young Adult
Publisher: WiDo Publishing
Publication Date: 22 November 2016
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback
Pages: 292
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones

#BlogTour: Standing Ground by Alice Rachel @AliceRachelWrit @XpressoTours #GuestPost #Giveaway

It’s a pleasure to welcome Alice Rachel to the blog today as part of her tour for Standing Ground the second novel in her Under Ground series. It’s a dystopian romance series for young adults and in the guest post today Alice talks about how she has gone about creating a virus for this world. It’s a great read so I hope you enjoy it.

If you would like to catch up with the series you can grab book one here.

If you want to follow the rest of the tour you can check out the stops over at Xpresso Book Tours.

Description

When the authorities strike to regain control over the riots in Eboracum City and use drastic measures as retaliation against the civilians, the citizens are forced to fight back to survive. A virus has spread through the Underground, taking down the refugees one by one, soon contaminating the rebels. If Thia wants to save the ones she loves, she will have to retrieve the cure, quickly. But certain decisions are costly, and not all actions are free of consequences.

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Guest Post

Creating a virus in a dystopian world

There IS a virus in Standing Ground! How did you know? *winks*

Mmmm, creating a virus… Well, that was tough because I know nothing about medicine or science.

I decided to choose a virus that already exists (pneumonia) and have scientists modify it a bit to make it more difficult to detect and deadlier.

The other virus in the novel is the West Nile virus, which isn’t common in New York State right now, but in a world where the temperatures have risen and more insects may be present, it could be a possibility.

I had to do research about the virus, how it spreads, what the symptoms are, how deadly it is, and how it can be cured.

These two viruses are mentioned in Standing Ground.

But there is a third disease mentioned in the series, which affects some members of the lower class: dysentery.

It’s a sickness my grandpa talked about a lot because he and many others suffered from it when they were kept in concentration camps. My grandpa said he only survived because he ate charcoal, and a friend of his died because he refused to eat it.

Though there is no charcoal mentioned in my stories, dysentery is present in Terrence’s short story and it’s one of the sicknesses plaguing the lower class.

Going back to pneumonia.

What was interesting to me was linking the characters in a way that is only apparent if one reads all the stories.

In one of my short stories that work preludes to Standing Ground, a character loses his job because he refuses to work on the disease. He realizes the government of New York State is trying to create this monster pneumonia, and he refuses to be a part of that.

Then in Standing Ground, another character related to that same man dies from that same disease.

I like placing little clues and links like this throughout the series.

Obviously, I cannot say who the characters are. The readers will just have to see for themselves.

Finally, another aspect of the series that has to do with diseases is how skilled one of my characters (Willow) is with plants and flowers. She would probably know how to heal a wound with the right herbs or what to eat to overcome some sickness. That’s actually mentioned in Standing Ground where her skills would be needed.

I hope that covered the topic. Thank you so much for inviting me on your blog.

About Alice Rachel

Alice Rachel is the author of the YA Forbidden Romance/ Dystopian Romance Series “Under Ground.”

Her time is divided between teaching French, writing, reading, drawing, and spending time with her hubby and guinea pigs.

Alice loves talking to readers, so send her a message…

   

Giveaway

Giveaway ButtonClick on the image to head to rafflecopter to enter the tour-wide international giveaway to win:

  • A Paperback copy of “Under Ground,” “Losing Ground,” and “Standing Ground” with the new covers. (Please, note that SG will get its new cover later in April)
  • $20 Amazon gift card

Good Luck!

Book & Buy Links

TitleStanding Ground
SeriesUnder Ground #2
Author: Alice Rachel
Genre: Dystopia | Romance | Young Adult
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 27 October 2016
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback
Pages: 558
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