1. So, tell us about A WIZARD'S FORGE.
A Wizard’s Forge is about a young woman’s effort to recast herself as someone strong and powerful in order to wreak revenge of a man who stripped her of everything she cared about. The story follows a forge theme as Vic (short for Victoria) is forcibly taken from her homeland, sold into slavery, and then escapes and becomes a warrior known as the Blade. Meanwhile, there are many signposts that suggest she has a larger destiny, which begins to be fulfilled near the end of the novel, when she acquires some phenomenal telekinetic powers. So it’s an origin story, where a weak nobody becomes an empowered superhero, of sorts.
2. What makes it different from other fantasy series?
I think the fact that it’s a mashup of so many themes and tropes from speculative fiction sets it apart. It’s science fantasy set on a lost space colony, and it uses a lot of tropes from high fantasy, including a hero’s journey and a special talisman. As you’ve pointed out in your review, Vic resembles a “typical” YA heroine in the beginning of the book, when she’s a teenager. But the main focus of Vic’s story is how she copes with being a survivor of human trafficking and sexual abuse yearsafterward, when she’s an adult soldier.
3. What was the inspiration for the series?
Readers familiar with Anne McCaffrey’s Pern books may recognize the lost space colony setting, and Vic is sort of a combination of Lessa, the protagonist of Dragonflight, and Menolly, the protagonist of Dragonsong. Latha’s guild-based economy was also inspired by McCaffrey’s Pern, particularly the Harper’s Hall. The story also contains subtle echoes of the fairy tale Rapunzel.
The giant insects came out of my nightmares when I was a kid. The creatures from movies like Them! and Twenty Million Miles to Earth, which used to be shown on Saturday afternoons or late at night back on independent broadcast TV stations back in the 1970s, embedded themselves in my subconscious. As a result, I am both fascinated and horrified by insects. I used to work as a production editor for an entomology journal, where I learned a lot about their physiology. Believe it or not, I never read Robert Heinlein’s Starship Troopers, but when the movie came out, I thought, hey, it’s the Kragnashians!
4. A Wizard's Forge deals with some very dark and serious topics. Why did you decide to deal with them the way you did?
I’m a pantser so the dark themes developed as a natural consequence of the plot. Everything began with Vic being kidnapped by pirates and sold into slavery in a “be careful what you wish for” scenario. Vic is frustrated with the people in her homeland not taking her seriously or finding her attractive—and then she’s kidnapped and held captive by someone who is obsessed with who she is, or actually, who he thinks she will become. Lornk believes he knows something about Vic’s destiny, and his entire goal is to control her so she’ll fulfil it in a way that benefits him. He uses seduction and sexual abuse as tools to gain her compliance, but she escapes before he can finish the job of securing her devotion. Her personality is completely broken down, but it’s not rebuilt yet. Thus, she spends the rest of the novel trying to repair that damage.
5. Is it hard to write relationships in your book when there's such terrible trauma hanging over them?
Not really. I’ve thankfully not had to endure psychological abuse like Vic undergoes, but I can imagine how I would react if I did. She and I share a lot of traits, extreme reserve being first among them. Like her, I’m slow to recognize the interest of potential romantic partners and inclined to dismiss signals as either mockery or simple friendship. In Vic’s case, her first “romantic” experiences come in an extremely abusive relationship, so it’s even harder for her to accept normal, healthy romantic interest when she encounters it. She turns a blind eye to Ashel’s overtures because she doesn’t believe she’s worthy of his affection, and doubts he sees her in that light. Ashel has to explicitly declare his intentions for her to begin to see that relationship as a possibility, and then she still cannot acknowledge her own feelings for him.
6. How have readers responded to your work?
It’s been a roller coaster at times: people seem to either love it or hate it. Early on I had some negative reviews from readers who seemed to want a more black and white story, where Vic felt only hate for Lornk and wanted to kill him, period. They strongly disliked the fact that she has Stockholm syndrome, even though this reaction to her captivity and abuse is well documented in real life (just look up Stockholm syndrome or battered woman syndrome). However, I value those negative reviews because they’ve helped shape the book’s readership, steering people away who don’t want to read about those themes. As time has marched on, the response from readers has been increasingly positive. I’m also thrilled that male readers seem to like Vic’s story as much as female readers. I never set out to write a “woman’s story,” and I’m glad that men seem to enjoy it and get a lot out of it.
7. Would you consider your book science fiction, fantasy, or science fantasy?
It definitely straddles the divide between fantasy and science fiction, so is properly called a science fantasy. There is even a (pseudo)scientific explanation for the “magic” in the book, although Vic won’t learn it until the sequel.
8. Who is your favorite character after the lead?
That’s weighted 50/50 between Ashel and Geram. I love them both. Ashel was written to be a pastiche of a fairy tale prince, but I’ve worked hard to layer in complexity into his character and explore what is really going on inside the head of the nicest, most talented, best looking guy in the land. On the outside, he’s everything Vic isn’t: he’s completely at ease with himself and his place in the world, but we discover he harbors quite a few insecurities and inner demons—a struggle that will only get worse in the second book.
I love Geram because he’s so noble—he’s the kind of guy who would throw himself on a grenade to save a comrade, even if it was someone he disliked. Geram also will face some challenges to his nobility in the second book, which I hope readers will find intriguing.
9. What are the ups versus downsides of being an indie author?
I’m a controlling person with high standards, so I like being in charge of all the decisions. The downside is, I don’t always make good decisions—particularly when it comes to marketing—so some of my efforts haven’t been very successful.
10. Any tips for being an indie author?
Don’t try to get the editing done on the cheap. A good editor is hard to find, and you usually get what you pay for.
11. What do you think the key for writing female heroines versus male in fantasy are? You've been mentioned in other interviews to have strong opinions on the subject.
I have written a lot on this topic (for example, “Heroes, Heroines, and Heroism,” “What’s the Matter with Mary Sue,” a discussion of gender and heroism with Allan Batchelder, and “The Problem With Abandoning the Strong Female Character”), but the key to writing realistic female (and male) protagonists is simple: create people, not characters. (In fact, I think this rule applies to all characters in a book: protagonists, antagonists, and the supporting cast.) In other words, avoid stereotypes and flesh out each character to make him or her a three-dimensional human being. How do you do that? Here’s where the adage write what you know comes into play for the speculative fiction author. Base your characters’ personalities and behavior on real people you know or you’ve observed. (Tip: pay attention to how people talk and interact with each other in real life. Eavesdropping on strangers in restaurants, parks, and airports can be really enlightening.) I certainly don’t know any kings or queens, but I do know a lot about family dynamics and how parents’ and children’s ambitions and desires can clash and create resentment and disappointment as well as pride. That is the sort of thing authors should draw upon when creating characters.
12.What can we expect of you next?
I have some short stories coming out in various anthologies and A Wizard’s Sacrifice, the sequel to A Wizard’s Forge, should be out next year.
13. Do you have any other indie authors you'd recommend the works of?
I haven’t read very widely in the indie world—something I’m trying to rectify during this year’s SPFBO competition. I would recommend a few stand-outs (some of which your readers probably haven’t heard of):
C.C. Aune: The Ill-Kept Oath was my favorite read of 2016. It’s an Austenesque novel of manners, written in the style and language of the regency period, but in which two young women inherit a magical legacy from their dead parents and slowly become ensnared in the opening moves of a magical rebellion against the British crown. I love Aune’s prose—she’s one of the best writers out there, whether indie or traditionally published—and I love the way she tells this story in authentic detail.
Graham Ing: Ocean of Dust is a really good YA novel about a teenage girl who is pressed into service aboard a merchant ship in a world where the oceans are composed of an extremely fine silt and the ships are powered by the static charge moving through the dust. It’s a great seafaring adventure and coming of age story.
E.P. Clark: The Midnight Land is one of my favorite feminist novels. It follows a princess on an expedition to survey the northernmost reaches of her nation’s territory, in a land that resembles pre-Christian Russia. The princess is an underdog character who has a low opinion of herself, based on the abuse she’s taken from family members, but along this journey she discovers that the so-called weakness people criticize about her—her empathy—is actually an incredibly dangerous power. The story is filled with all sorts of interesting creatures from Russian folk lore, and the world flips gender relations upside down in some very creative and fascinating ways.
Rob Hayes: Everybody knows who Rob is, now that Where Loyalties Lie won last year’s SPFBO. I haven’t read that book yet, but I was really impressed with The Heresy Within. Rob is a great writer and I look forward to reading his later work.
C.T. Phipps: That guy ain’t too bad a writer. I did love his Wraith Knight with the love a thousand kittens and I’m excited to read Wraith Lord.
It probably won’t surprise you that I started to write ‘Cold Iron’ intending to write a novel about rival fencing masters contending for control of the nightlife of a city. In fact, that’s little to do with the eventual novel, which is deeper, more complex, and with some serious thought about violence and its consequences thrown in… The painting above, by my friend (and sword student) Keight MacLean, illustrates four of the principle characters.. and their swords.
In Cold Iron, there are rival sword schools, and a great many types of swords, and a fair number of sword fights. I thought it might be fun to blog about the swords themselves, and how they shape action, and maybe even character.
In the world of Cold Iron, the main action takes place in the ‘Empire’ which is roughly analogous to the late 17th century Venetian empire, if a whole lot of things were changed… If you want to learn lots about the world, feel free to read my ‘Guide’ which you can download for free at http://christiancameronauthor.com/index.php/the-long-war/artwork-resources/cold-iron-readers-guide/.
There are numerous types of swords, because the Empire contains several cultures and borders on several more. The sword types have, as in our world, been developed and refined by circumstances, both martial, as in the development of martial arts and armour, and fashion, which is sometimes just as practical or impractical. Carrying really big swords is clumsy and difficult unless you are on horseback; hard to draw in an alley, too.
And the Empire is old; thousands of years old, so you can assume they’ve already tried other swords, and used them and moved on.
The two main cultures of the Empire are the Byzas, who view themselves as the ‘original’ culture that built the empire, and the ‘Arnauts’ or ‘Souliotes’ who are a highland, cattle-raising people probably descended from the losers in an earlier series of genocidal wars.
And now, the swords.
The standard sword of both cultures is the ‘arming sword.’ This is a simple, single handed, straight, usually double-edged sword with a long-ish blade and a fairly simple hilt. This one has a complex ricasso to cover the hand, and a good, wide, sharp blade, and is very like the sword Dahlia usually carries. Who is Dahlia, you ask? She’s the dark-skinned, pale haired swordswoman (and mage) in the painting.
Note how wide and heavy the blade is. Not a rapier, but a kind of broadsword with a complex hilt, capable of punching though armour. Another variation might have even simpler hilt design; this is the kind of arming sword most of the characters use when fencing in the schools.
Byzas nobles, at least most of them, wear swords mostly to mark their status. They wear ‘small swords’ and many of them use these light, fast swords to fight duels and fight in the streets. The ‘small sword’ is a street weapon; not as useful as an arming sword or ‘side-sword’ for fighting on a battlefield, but much easier to carry.
These are slim but deceptively tough. Some have very wide blades close to the hilt, where the owner can make parries against a heavier sword, while having needle like points that can penetrate the best chain mail.
Souliotes (and their cousins in Atti across the straights) prefer a curved sword. Among the Souliotes it is called a Kilij.
The blade is light, but the reinforced point makes it a slashing sword with very good handling, and a trained swordsman can thrust with it as well.
Further east, among the Safiri peoples, it’s called a shamshir.
The Shamshir is lighter and faster than the kilij, but its close cousin, and in fact, the two names are almost interchangeable.
Even farther east is the magnificent land of Zhou; one of the main characters has traveled from there, and he owns, and wears, two different swords; a court dao like the one he’s wearing in the illustration at the head of the blog, and a battle dao. His battle dao is very similar to a 16th century Japanese tachi.
And finally, the protagonist has an old sword that’s too heavy for him. He bought it in a theive’s market in the heart of the city where he studies the Ars Magika; it’s probably a thousand years old, with an almost four foot blade. This clunky old weapon is all Aranthur can afford, which has certain consequences for him. Its old, but the steel is good, as he’s a big lad…
And note that rare, complex hilt on a two handed sword; a hilt that will cover your hands, and maybe keep you alive…
Listen, as you know, I love swords. I collect them, I fight with them, I teach their use. I wanted to write a novel where swords were at the heart of the action; there’s some swordsperson in jokes added to the fight scenes, and every fight scene is meant to portray or even teach a real-world sword lesson based on the manuals of the 16th and 17th centuries in our world from Portugal to China. But I want to stress that I built cultures to go with the swords, because straight or curved, single handed or two-handed, the swords design reflects the needs of the culture. Swords are never purely ‘efficient.’ Wear ability counts; people have different needs on horseback and on foot, in cities and in the countryside, at war or at peace; facing armoured opponents or unarmoured opponents. Steel matters too, and manufacturing capabilities; the techniques required to create a two-handed Italian long sword are very technologically different from the skills required to make a migration-era broadsword. In our world, steel quality determined the creation of the Japanese tachi and later the katana; steel-working techniques made central Asian swords mostly curved, and left Western European swords mostly straight. (I recommend the ‘Knight and the Blast Furnace’ by Alan Williams to anyone who wants to deep-dive into steel working as a cultural artifact.)
Swords. One of the ways I chose to build my world. I hope that you enjoy Cold Iron.
Published by Gollancz, 30th August 2018
Paperback £16.99 | eBook £8.99
Gripping and action-packed
fantasy with a historical twist.
Aranthur is a student. He showed a little magical talent, is studying at the local academy, and is nothing particularly special. Others are smarter. Others are more talented. Others are quicker to pick up techniques. But none of them are with him when he breaks his journey home for the holidays in an inn.
None of them step in to help when a young woman is thrown off a passing stage coach into the deep snow at the side of the road. And none of them are drawn into a fight to protect her.
One of the others might have realised she was manipulating him all along . . .
A powerful story about beginnings, coming of age, and the way choosing to take one step towards violence can lead to a slippery and dangerous slope, this is an accomplished fantasy series driven by strong characters and fast-paced action.
'Terrific medieval fantasy with three-dimensional characters, realistic battle scenes, intricate plotting and attention to the minutiae of medieval life.’ - JOHN GWYNNE
Miles Cameron is a fantasy novelist who currently lives in Toronto, Canada. He is a military veteran and has a degree in Medieval History.
His debut novel (The Red Knight), first in The Traitor Son novels, was one of the most acclaimed fantasy debuts of 2012 and nominated for the David Gemmell Morningstar award. It is followed by The Fell Sword, published in 2014.
I consider Mitchell Hogan to be one of the great fantasy authors out there, so when he asked me to host the cover reveal for his latest novel, Shadow of the Exile, I happily accepted, although this is something we rarely practice on BookNest.eu. But, before I show you the cover, let's see what Shadow of the Exile is about:
FIVE THINGS FROM HISTORY THAT INSPIRED THE WORLD OF
EMPIRE OF SILENCE
Those ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it, they say. Well I say those not-ignorant about history are doomed to borrow from it. I have been an avid student of history all my life, thanks to my father’s good influence and my having the good fortune to grow up in an era when the History Channel still knew what its own name meant. (Not that I have anything against Ancient Aliens, but would it kill them to make one documentary about the Byzantines?) Though I sometimes struggle to remember what I discussed in the morning come the end of the day, I have an annoying habit of subjecting my friends and family to stories about how the Spanish city of Zaragoza derives from the Latin “Caesaraugusta” and dates back to the first century BC; or how it seems the Terracotta Army of Emperor Qin Shi Huang may have been built with the help of Greek sculptors; or about how Charlemagne was penpals with the Caliph Harun al-Rashid (who once sent the Holy Roman Emperor an elephant). They’ve since learned to tolerate my ramblings, for which I’m grateful.
The world of Empire of Silence shows history repeating itself in small ways, though the overarching plot isn’t based on any historical event. The Sollan Empire is by its nature deliberately reactionary and traditionalist, with humanity having organized itself into a feudal hierarchy after an ancient war against artificial intelligence.
1. THE IMPERIAL CHANTRY DRAWS ON THE QING LEGAL SYSTEM AND THE SPANISH INQUISITION
More accurately, the Chantry is part Qing legal system and part the English-speaking world’s impression of the Catholic Church. The Chantry functions as a religious institution, but also as the Sollan Empire’s judicial system, prosecuting civil cases in addition to investigating religious crimes (most typically the possession or use of illegal technologies). In carrying out this judicial function, the Chantry’s inquisitors carry out surgical mutilations according to a strict index of appropriate punishments inspired by the practice of judicial torture during China’s Qing Dynasty, where magistrates were given full authority to torture those convicted of a crime or even in the pursuit of that conviction. Similar practices were carried out throughout the Byzantine Empire, where it was common practice to mutilate beaten political rivals in order to permanently delegitimize them in the eyes of the public.
Of course, the most famous case of a religion using techniques of systematic torture on heretics is the Spanish Inquisition, though the truth of the events are badly exaggerated and distorted by centuries of both the British and American wars against the Catholic Spanish Empire. Many of the horrors commonly associated with the Inquisition—such as the iron maiden—were never used, and most of the horror attributed to that violent, anticolonialist chapter in Spain’s history instead has its roots in wartime propaganda from the Spanish-American War and the struggles between Spain and Britain. However exaggerated the accounts of the Spanish Inquisition were, they remain excellent fodder for stories.
2. ROMAN GLADIATORS WERE PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES
Many people (not you, of course) still believe that Roman gladiators were all slaves and prisoners made to fight to the death and kill one another for the amusement of the Roman public. Certainly, many slaves and prisoners did fight to the death, or were killed by lions or tigers or bears, but the gladiators themselves were superstars. Training a proper gladiator was an investment of time and money, and while some gladiators were slaves, very many were freedmen or even citizens sponsored and paid to fight. And since gladiators were such a big investment, it would hardly do to go killing them left and right for the amusement of the commons. Rather, gladiators were superstars, and Romans would debate whether a secutor-style Gladiator could beat a retiarius, or vice versa—and with the same fervor of today’s baseball fans comparing stats. In the Sollan Empire, gladiators are similarly treated as celebrities, and only ever fight in smart armor that locks up as they take damage. But the Sollan peasants like a good death every now and then, and so the professional gladiators will often square off against the myrmidons—a combination of paid volunteer fighters and prisoners. The myrmidons don’t have the luxury of high tech armor, either. They might triumph by locking up their enemy’s armor, but make no mistake: for the myrmidon pit fighters, it’s do or die.
3. HADRIAN IS IN PART MODELED ON LORD BYRON
To say the English poet Lord Byron cuts a unique figure is to undervalue the term. Born with a club foot and a chip on his shoulder, he forced himself to ride horses and learned to box and swim. Something of a rebel without a cause, he fought for Greek Independence and died of fever at age 36 attempting to liberate that country from the Ottomans. Himself a nobleman, he resented rank. He was prone to sullen rages and thoughts of revenge, but was eminently likable and charismatic at the same time. He was also prone to racking up large debts and leaving behind jilted lovers and bastard children, and it’s often said that Ruthven, the main character of John Polidori’s The Vampyre, was based in no small part on Byron, who was Polidori’s friend. My hero, Hadrian, lacks Byron’s club foot and philandering habits (he’s also not a vampire, I’m sorry to say), but like Byron he’s someone not at home with himself. Like Byron, he puts little stock in the position he was born to—though he is happy to take advantage of the position when it’s useful. Like Byron, he despises authority: He’s a bit manic, and more than a bit melodramatic. He shares Byron’s love of ancient cultures and literature, and is an artist himself. Byron himself became the archetype of the so-called “Byronic Hero,” which features many of these traits, but when I started Empire of Silence it was that limping, half-mad poet I first thought of, not knowing that the man had already made himself a meme.
4. ARRANGED MARRIAGE IS A THING AGAIN
In order to secure alliances between houses, the genetically augmented noble class in the Sollan Empire has taken to arranging marriages once again. As in medieval Europe and elsewhere, both sons and daughters are married away where it is convenient for the families in question. But because the noble class tends to use gestation tanks to grow their children, these marriages are little more than contracts, and many noble couples—like their ancient and medieval counterparts—rarely even see one another. Moreover, these couples may be male/female, male/male, or female/female, regardless of the preferences of the two getting married—it all depends on what is convenient for the allied families. Because of this, most houses do not rest the criteria for inheritance on a child’s sex or birth order, but choose their heirs based on individual merit (as did the first four of the Five Good Emperors—including Hadrian—until Marcus Aurelius ruined everything for everyone).
5. THE SCHOLIASTS WERE INSPIRED BY THE EARLY CHRISTIANS...AND WERNHER VON BRAUN
My father grew up during the heyday of the Apollo program (sorry to age you, dad), and when I was little he would regale me with stories about the astronauts and the scientists who made it all possible. An engineer himself, he would tell me stories about Wernher von Braun, the Nazi-turned-NASA engineer who designed the Saturn V rocket that took us to the Moon. As a boy, the idea of this brilliant scientist changing sides after the war seemed very compelling. The scholiasts in Hadrian’s world are a set of monastic scientists who serve the Sollan Empire’s feudal lords. Like von Braun, their order began with technicians captured from the defeated Mericanii—the totalitarian system the Empire overthrew at its founding. Stripped of their reliance on machines, the scholiasts cultivated a series of mnemonics and learning techniques that help them serve as de facto replacements for computers in a world where artificial intelligence is banned. Science fiction fans will recognize echoes of Frank Herbert’s mentats in this, but this is where the early Christianity comes in. The scholiasts’ principle concern is the regulation of emotion and bias. The writings of early Christian fathers, like Origen and Evagrius, are similarly interested in banishing such passions. Evagrius in particular believed that such passions obstructed the faithful’s relationship with God. (His teachings, it should be noted, passed on through writers like Maximus the Confessor and Cassian before arriving with Pope St. Gregory the Great, who codified these passions as the Seven Deadly Sins). In a similar fashion, the scholiasts believe that their human senses and desires cloud their relationship to objective truth, and—like the early Christians and the Stoics who preceded them—they practice extreme self-restraint in order to strip away bias, desire, and subjectivity. Like Christian monks, they also preserve the literature and traditions of Earth’s Golden Age in massive libraries, such as the one on the planet Colchis where Hadrian is said to have left his diary (which begins with Empire of Silence), and like those early Christians preserved Latin well after the collapse of the Roman Empire, the scholiasts still use today’s English, even though the common language of the Sollan Empire is a pidgin of English, Hindi, and German (which I am not talented enough a linguist to have created much of).
Christopher Ruocchio is a debut novelist writing in the tradition of Dune and The Book of the New Sun. He is an editorial assistant working for a US publishing house, and lives in North Carolina, USA. You can learn more by following @TheRuocchio on twitter.
BookNest has once again the honor to be one of the 10 Judges in this year's SPFBO. As a matter of fact, we were so excited that we ended up buying some cosplay costumes. From now on, whenever we judge a book we will be dressed like this:
In a previous post on our Facebook Group, I announced that Dyrk Ashton, a fan favorite of our community, and Rob J. Hayes, the winner of last year's SPFBO, will join the BookNest.eu team for the first round of this year's contest. In this post I'll introduce the other members of our team, and how things will go down on our side.
Our initial batch of 30 books has been split into 6 groups of 5 books each. Dyrk Ashton and Rob J. Hayes will join our very own Michael McLendon, C.T. Phipps and Katerina Papasotiriou, as well as the guest Lynn Kempner (Grimmedian). Each one of them will read the 5 books assigned to them, review all of them (*without* rating them) and pick the best one among them, which will proceed to the second phase of the 1st round as a Semi-Finalist. That's right, you understood correctly - we will review all 30 books assigned to us! I (Petros) will then proceed to read all 6 semi-finalists and pick the best one among them to be our Finalist in the 2nd round of the SPFBO.
In the second round I'll be joined by Rita Sloan to read and review the Finalists of the other 9 Judges.
Here's the aforementioned groups, and the Judges assigned to them:
IMPORTANT UPDATE: Since several of our members read We Ride the Storm and found it to be *excellent*, we've decided to promote it as an *extra*, 7th Semi-Finalist.
Michael will still pick a Semi-Finalist from his remaining batch of 4 books.
Best of luck to all of you,
The BookNest.eu Team
A typical night might find me in front of the television watching a movie with my husband. If I got to pick the movies all the time, they’d be horror movies. While my husband has nothing against them, he gets tired of watching the “same old thing” all the time. (His words, not mine.) Not me, though. I could watch horror every night of the week and then some. I love the effects, the suspense, the tension (no matter how manufactured it is), and the experience as a whole. I love not knowing what I’m in for every time I choose a new movie. I love investigating the new mythos a horror movie presents to me, still operating within a framework we all understand, but putting its own spin on it. But I never used to.
Hello, I’m Jesse Teller, author of The Manhunters series.
Hi everyone, Petrik from Booknest here. Today I’m bringing you an interview with author R.F. Kuang, whose upcoming debut novel, The Poppy War, completely blew me away. I truly believe this book will end up being not only the best debut of the year, but possibly of all time.
To celebrate the release of The Empire of Ashes (The Draconis Memoria #3) by Anthony Ryan, one of my favorite series and authors respectively, I'm holding an International Deluxe Giveaway in which I offer all of his books (hardcovers) in one lucky winner! That's right, all you have to do is write a simple comment (make sure to include your email so we will be able to contact you) and you could win 6 brand new hardcovers! To make it even better, I'll also select 2 winners to get a 'The Empire of Ashes' hardcover from people who have shared our giveaway on Facebook and retweeted it on Twitter, so make sure you share and retweet for two extra chances to win!
The lucky winners will be selected and announced on July 2, 2018 (one day before the book's release) and the books will be shipped out the next day!