Posts Tagged ‘fantasy’

Book Details:

Book Title: The Sky Throne by Chris Ledbetter
Category: YA Fiction, 300 pages
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Month 9 Books
Release date: April 18, 2017
Tour dates: Sept 18 to Oct 20, 2017

Content Rating: PG + M (No f-words but there may be some mild profanity, and mild religious expletives such as “damn”, “hell” and “Oh God!”, some depictions of violence. No drug use or underage drinking. Some semi-mature themes – suggestion of sexual misconduct by certain characters, but not the actual performing of it.)

Book Description:

Duality dwells at every turn, and an adolescent Zeus will learn that all too well when Hyperion attacks his family on Crete.

When the dust settles, his mother is unconscious and his best friend left for dead.

Stacking epic insult upon fatal injury, Zeus discovers the woman who raised him is not his biological mother. But to ensure her safety while she recovers, a heavy-hearted Zeus leaves her behind to seek answers at Mount Olympus Preparatory Academia.

Zeus embarks on a quest to discover who ordered the attack on his home, avenge the death of his friend, and find his birth mother. When some of his new schoolmates vanish, Zeus’s quest is turned upside down, and the only way to make things right is to access the power of The Sky Throne, confront a most dangerous enemy, and take his life back.

On his way to becoming king of the Greek gods, Zeus will learn to seize power, neutralize his enemies, and fall in love.

To read reviews, please visit Chris Ledbetter’s page on iRead Book Tours.

Author Post: 

The Academic World of THE SKY THRONE

What makes THE SKY THRONE unique is that it is set in a time that is pre-human, where only deities exist. THE SKY THRONE follows the general plotline of the ancient text of Hesiod’s Theogony, which is the basis for the Hellenic Pantheon’s creation myth. I then scoured other pantheon’s creation myths in order to bridge the Hellenic versions with theirs as if they were occurring simultaneously. Even though my story focuses solely on the Hellenic pantheon, I do try to show the reader echoes of other happenings around the world. As such, the Hellenic gods interact with deities from all the other pantheons in what is called The Pantheon League.

The Pantheon League encompasses the scholastic systems of each mythical pantheon around the world, from the Aztecs to the Egyptians. The Hellenic system is named the Olympus Academic District. It’s comprised of six lower academies and two upper academies. The lower academies are situated on the islands of Limnos, Samos, Euboea, Crete, Kithira, and Kephalonia. The two upper schools are Othrys Hall Academy and Mount Olympus Preparatory Academy.

All godly students across Hellas were homeschooled until they turned thirteen, which is when they’d begin lower academy. Subjects studied included language arts, math, music, science, music, and physical fitness. Students also participated in competitive sports such as swimming, rowing, wrestling, running, and throwing. Upper academy curriculum consisted of such advanced classes as Metallurgy: Weaponry and Jewelry, Shapeshifting, Horticulture, Rhetoric, Creature Creation, Philosophy, Game Theory, Leadership, and Astronomy.

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Meet the author:

Chris Ledbetter is an award-winning author of short fiction and novels for young adults. “Jason’s Quest,” a short story retelling of the Jason and Medea Greek myth was published in the anthology, Greek Myths Revisited. His first full-length novel, Drawn earned him two awards, Library of Clean Reads Best YA 2015 and Evernight Publishing Readers’ Choice Award Best YA 2015, as well as a USA TODAY “Must Read” recommendation. His second novel, Inked, concludes that duology. The Sky Throne is his newest young adult novel. The second book in the series is set to release in 2018.

He’s a proud member of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) and a strong supporter of the Need for Diverse Books. He now writes and lives in Wilmington, NC with his family, including three cats.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ facebook ~ Pinterest

Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Oct 28

Prizes: ​

Grand Prize: One winner will get a signed paperback of The Sky Throne + $20 Amazon GC (open USA only)

First Place: Two winners will each get an ebook copy of The Sky Throne + $10 Amazon GC (open internationally)

Second Place: Two winners will each get an ebook copy of The Sky Throne (open internationally)

TOTAL: 5 winners

(Ends Oct 28)

CLICK HERE to enter!

Review by D. Lizer:

Although I don’t actively review these days, I was immediately interested in The Sky Throne by Chris Ledbetter. I love learning of various culture’s mythologies and Greek mythology I learned about in middle school, which seemed appropriate for this book. I don’t normally read YA but when something intrigues I find it fun to just go with it!

You’re introduced to the protagonist, Zeus, and get to experience the imaginative Greek island scenery and fantasy world building while his personality unfolds. He’s the raucous, prankster teen that you would expect knowing anything about the namesakes’ story. He is also an underdog in his current situation, neither excelling at school or carrying any of the prestige that we normally think of when envisioning Zeus. In this story he must work hard to become the god of legend, even though he might try a little too hard for eternal glory from the get go. All in all, he is easy to like and root for, particularly when he is standing up for people he wants to protect.

The pace of the story unfolds in a way that keeps you guessing and delivers the payoffs that are desired. The scenes lead you along and urge you to continue reading. Conspiracy among the ruling gods, death, betrayal, romance and battles, this story delivers all of it. Although The Sky Throne is a standalone story, it builds a world and leaves the door open to the next story in a way that I think many readers will enjoy. If you like imaginative, quick paced stories that bring to life old characters in a new way you should check this out.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Origins
H.A.L.F. Series Book 3
by Natalie Wright
Genre: YA SciFi Fantasy
Alien predators attack Europe. A deadly virus spawns an epidemic. And a
clandestine organization conspires to profit from chaos and forge a
New World Order.
In this heart-pounding finale of the
award-winning H.A.L.F. series, Tex, Erika and the rest are in a race
against time. For months they‘ve fought for their lives. Now they
battle to save us all.
Tex and Erika are fugitives again, running for their lives. But when Tex
falls gravely ill, a Navajo healer is his only hope for survival. Tex
emerges from the ordeal changed in body and mind but with vital
information: how to stop the predatory M’Uktah from destroying
those he has come to love.
Erika Holt seeks a respite from the constant threats to her life but she’s
not about to give up. As she and Tex launch a mission to shut down
the galactic highway used by the predatory M’Uktah, she grows closer
to her troubled half-human companion. But what about her on-again,
off-again boyfriend, Jack?
Jack Wilson, with his new friend Anna Sturgis, is determined to put an end
to the Makers’ schemes for world domination. Complicating matters,
an anti-viral that could save millions from an alien virus has been
stolen.
As both alien and human forces line up against them, the destiny of all
mankind is hand the hands of these young warriors. And time is
running out.
What Others are Saying about H.A.L.F.: ORIGINS:
The latest satisfying addition to the H.A.L.F. series has something for
everyone: exciting action scenes; great, complex love stories;
fascinating new aliens; and relatable teen characters fighting to
save the world and find their places in it.” ~Alyssa H., Content
Editor, Red Adept Editing
The Makers
H.A.L.F. Series Book 2
“Conflicts with alien races are given enormous depth in this engrossingly
written science fiction novel.” ~
Forewords Clarion Reviews


Roswell. Area 51. The X-Files.
You’ve seen the aliens known as “the
Greys” in movies and on T.V. But what if everything you think
you know about them is wrong?
And what if the Greys are only the beginning?
On a nondescript planet on the far side of the galaxy, the M’Uktah have
evolved from a wolf-like predatory creature into a highly advanced
species that has mastered intergalactic travel. They are cultured.
Refined.
And hungry…
Wright’s epic and much anticipated follow up to her multiple award-winning
debut Sci Fi novel
H.A.L.F.: The Deep Beneath:
The Deep Beneath,
Runner Up in the Beach Book Festival
Finalist, Wishing Shelf Book Awards
Semi-Finalist, Kindle Review Book Awards and Library
Journal pick for curated Shelf-e library collection
The Deep Beneath
H.A.L.F. Series Book 1

Can a Human-Alien Hybrid, Created to be a Weapon, Save us from a Secret
War we Don’t Know is Coming?

Library Journal eBook Selection

H.A.L.F. (Human Alien Life Form) #9 is the product of genetic engineering, the
union of human and alien DNA. Created to be a weapon in a secret war
we don’t know is coming, he proved too powerful to control. He has
lived for seventeen years in an underground lab, sedated and trained
to be a cold-blooded killing machine.
But H.A.L.F. 9 has escaped the lab and the sedation has worn off. He has
never been more alive. More powerful. Or more deadly.
While H.A.L.F. 9 revels in his newfound freedom, Erika Holt relaxes in the
desert with friends. But a typical Saturday night soon erupts into
chaos when fate brings her together with H.A.L.F. 9. Erika is forced
to make a choice that will irretrievably change her life. If she
chooses to help H.A.L.F. 9 escape, her fate will become intertwined
with his in what will become an intergalactic adventure. Little do
any of them know that their actions trigger a vast New World Order
conspiracy which began after the UFO crash in Roswell in 1947. Will
H.A.L.F. 9 be reeled back in, once again forced to do the bidding of
the Makers? And will any of them survive the dangers of The Deep
Beneath them?

Award-Winning Sci Fi Appropriate for the Entire Family

  • Silver Medalist, Wishing Shelf Book Awards
  • Semi-Finalist, Kindle Review Book Awards
  • Runner-Up, Beach Book Festival Awards
  • Library Journal choice for the curated Self-E Library Collection

˃˃˃
What Readers Say About The Deep Beneath:

“The action is great, and the scene with the alien spaceship was crazy
good. I found the ending to be quite surprising. It definitely made
me want to read the next one to see what happens both above ground
and below. I recommend this to all fans of sci-fi adventures.”
~C.J. Anaya, Best Selling Author of The Healer Series
“Once I began, I couldn’t put it down. It’s well-written, fast-paced, and
the characters are believable. I highly recommend this book and
anxiously await book 2!” ~M. Williams
“Extremely exciting and fast-paced story that sucked me in its sci-fi vortex and
wouldn’t let me go. H. A. L. F. 9 is probably my favorite alien
hybrid of all time. Can’t wait for the next book!” ~Ms. I Read
to Escape
Natalie is the author of the award-winning science fiction series H.A.L.F.,
and The Akasha Chronicles, a popular young adult fantasy
trilogy with over 2 Million reads on Wattpad. She lives
in Tucson, Arizona with her husband, teen daughter, and two cat
overlords.
Natalie spends her time writing, reading, geeking out over nerd culture and
cool science, and meeting readers and fans at book festivals and
comic cons throughout the western United States. Natalie appears
frequently on radio, podcasts and vlogs such as The Speculative
Fiction Cantina, Front Row Geeks and iHeart Radio.

The Four Seasons of H.A.L.F. by Natalie Wright

 

If you were a season, what season would you be? Are you a fiery, passionate summer? A cool, calm winter?

I had not considered this in terms of my characters while writing, but I recently wondered what seasons are my characters?

Erika Holt, the main character of the H.A.L.F. series, has a fiery nature. She’s passionate about causes but nothing brings out her fire more than someone messing with the people she cares about. She’d go to the ends of the Earth—and beyond!—for her friends. Erika represents the heat of summer.

Tex, aka H.A.L.F. 9, personifies the changeable nature of fall. One minute the weather is mild, the next blustery. In autumn it’s like the weather is trying to make up its mind. Tex can seem that way as well, but maybe it’s because he’s still trying to figure out how to be human. Fall may be unpredictable, but we love it anyway. That’s how Erika seems to feel about Tex too!

Of all the characters you’ll meet in the H.A.L.F. series, I think Anna Sturgis is like the cold breath of winter more than any of the others. With her icy blue eyes and golden curtain of hair, she looks like a “winter,” and her personality matches. It’s not that she’s a cold person. Jack gets to see her personable side. But Anna is cool and collected, reasoned and logical. In short, she is often everything that Erika isn’t. Can Jack fall for a winter girl after being so in love with a summer?

Speaking of Jack, he is a spring breeze. With his sun-kissed curly blonde locks, laid-back flip-flops and loose-fitting jeans, Jack is like a shoot of bright green new growth poking up through the soil. He’s a peace-loving, guitar-strumming lover not a fighter. Jack faces life and death situations throughout the H.A.L.F. series. After stepping over dead bodies on the battlefield, will his sweet spring nature endure?

Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
In celebration of the release of ORIGINS, the third and final
book in the H.A.L.F. series, all pre-order customers have the
opportunity to receive the following exclusive goodies:
  • A full-color, digital book extra, Lost Chapter and Cut Scenes.
    This book contains the author’s commentary on cut scenes as well
    as photos illustrations. This book is only available to pre-order
    customers.
  • A video retrospective of the H.A.L.F. series, complete with
    “soundtrack” for the series, an author interview, and tons of
    photos and illustrations documenting the series.
INSTRUCTIONS:
It’s simple to obtain the goods. All a customer has to do is:
  1. Buy the book in any format. Digital, paperback, hardcover, or audiobook,
    and at any retailer.
  1. Email a copy of the receipt (again, in any format—photo, screenshot,
    email receipt, etc.). Email the receipt to:
    half.origins.book@gmail.com
That’s it. The author or her representative will follow-up and send the
customer the awesome goodness of free gifts!
Additionally, every pre-order customer that avails themselves of the pre-order
giveaway will automatically be entered into the ORIGINS
Launch Mega Giveaway and have the chance to win the following:
  • GRAND PRIZE: 1 Winner will receive the following: $100
    Amazon Giftcard + Signed, Hardcover copies of the entire 3-book
    H.A.L.F. series + branded book swag, including metal bookmarks,
    complete set of H.A.L.F. Character Trading Cards®, keychain, and
    buttons + non-branded, retail swag themed to the book. Retail value
    of this prize is $240+
  • FIRST PRIZE: 1 Winner will receive: $25 Amazon Giftcard +
    Signed, Paperback copies of the entire 3-book H.A.L.F. series +
    branded swag (as listed above) + non-branded swag. Retail value of
    this prize is $75+
  • 10 Runner-Up Prizes: 10 Winners will receive: A gifted
    copy of Amazon Kindle version of an eBook of the reader’s choice
    from among Natalie Wright’s published, single-book works (Emily’s
    House, Emily’s Trial, Emily’s Heart, The Deep Beneath, The
    Makers, or ORIGINS). Retail value of this prize if between 99¢ to
    $3.99 (depending on book chosen and price at the time gifted).
★.•**•.★ Soul Warrior Book Blast ★.•**•.★ 
15th to 17th September, 2017
 
 
The Age of Kali is a series of mythic fantasy novels by international bestselling novelist Falguni Kothari. The first book of the series, Soul Warrior, introduces readers to a fictional law-governed Cosmos made up of heavenly, demonic and human realms and its protagonist, Lord Karna, the legendary guardian of the Human Realm, who is coerced into training six godlings into demon hunters against a rising demon army. The series arc interlocks into a war of domination between the Light and Dark forces of the Cosmos and the race to control the one soul capable of total cosmic annihilation, demi-god Karna’s and Draupadi’s secret child.
 
 
Get Your Copy from AMAZON
 
 
 
 
Praise for Soul Warrior:
 

“A beautiful exploration of fantasy and mythology, Soul Warrior (The Age of Kali) is the latest release from Falguni Kothari and by any stretch of the imagination she’s delivered an awesome story. Rich, enchanting, evocative, she effortlessly blends an ancient Indian epic and South Asian mythology with grace and quiet elegance to create the canvas upon which her miraculous world finds form…. Beautifully written and enviably imaginative, Soul Warrior proves an exemplary example of Fantasy Fiction. Definitely deserving of your attention it is recommended without reservation!”
   —Book Viral 


“I loved the writing which… hit that nice spot between being evocative and descriptive and still keeping the story moving….It has a huge cast of fascinating characters, a deep and rich world and definitely something I’m interested in following.”
   —Fangs for Fantasy 


“I loved the way Ms. Falguni has shown an eye for the details scattered throughout the novel…. Will I recommend this book? Oh yes, and be assured you will grab the next one too just to know more about the Soul Warrior.”
   —Global Asian Times 


“The plot is intriguing, much in the tradition of a modern thriller…. Precisely sketched and nuanced with quirky detail, the characters enrich the story they inhabit…. The vibrant characters in the multi-hued setting are the stuff superhero animation films are made of. Soul Warrior engrosses and enthralls. A thumping good read, I would say.”
   —Of Prose and Poetry blog 




Read an Excerpt:

SHUNYA: NOTHING AND EVERYTHING



Kuru Kshetra Battlefield.
        Day 17 of the Great Kuru War, seven thousand five hundred years ago.

Death is hot.

That surprises me. I’d imagined death as cold and brutal. Merciless. But in truth, death is hot as blood, and constant like a heartbeat.

Thrum. Thrum. Thrum. My lifeblood ebbs to the rhythm. My head ripped from its torso by Anjalika, the arrow of death that burns even now with the energy of the sun. Struck from behind like some novice. Felled in battle by that lily-livered usurper the Heavens smile upon—Prince Arjun. Brother Arjun.

What have I done?

I harness the thought. Cease all reflection and wrench free of my mortal body. I soar up, up into the gloaming, snapping the ties that tether me to life. Dead, I have no use for ties.

“A matter of perspective, Karna, O son of my godsire.” The unearthly words strum through the air, and I quiver like a plucked bowstring, overcome as much by the voice as its blasphemous claim. 

“Bonds of devotion nourish the soul, brother.”

There is that word again. Brother. Unpleasant laughter wells up in me. Alive, I am abandoned, denied my birthright—Celestial or royal. Death, it seems, changes everything.

A bright, nebulous light brings forth Lord Yama, the God of Death, atop his divine mount. His elephantine thighs ripple beneath a silken dhoti, ochre and crimson of color, as he guides the mammoth water buffalo to a halt. An iron medallion sways against the God’s powerful cerulean torso, its center stone an ethereal blood orange.

Hypnotic. Pulsing with life. I am drawn to the stone.

“Piteous waste,” Lord Yama mutters, surveying the carnage of war far below us.

I trace the trajectory of his gaze and behold the battered remains of my army drenched in the evidence of its mortality. Is it true? Have we died in vain?

Words form inside me and I will them out. “Shall we go, my lord?”

“Ha! Impatient to be judged, are you? Anxious to have your fate revealed?” asks the Judge of the Hell Realm. His red-black eyes burn with intelligence and compassion in a blue-tinged face that is long and lean and hard. “Rest easy, brother-warrior. You are not bound for the Great Courtroom.”
Not bound for Hell? Where then? Fear has eluded me for so long that I take a moment to recognize it. 

A hollow-bellied feeling it is, as annoying as a bone stuck in my throat.

“My lord, I have done bad deeds…terrible deeds in my life. I have waged wars, this horrendous bloodshed, and all because my pride could not—would not abide rejection. I have sinned. I must atone for my actions.”

Lord Yama smiles in a way I do not like. “You have redeemed yourself admirably, Karna. You forfeited your life for the greater good today. The deed far outweighs any misguided ones. Be at peace, brother, and enjoy the fruits of your karma.”

There is but one place to enjoy such fruits—the Higher Worlds.

I’d rather burn in Hell for eternity. I say so. “I won’t live amongst the Celestials.” Coexisting with the very souls who’ve spurned me is unthinkable. Watching her—for she would surely reside in Heaven soon—will be eternal torture.

Yama shakes his head, the horns on his crown slashing to and fro. “I thought you might say that. Relax. Your destiny lies elsewhere.”

“Am I to be reborn then? Am I to begin a new life, and forget the past?” Pain, sharp as a blade, lances through me at the thought. Forget my past? My family? Even her? Was that my punishment? To forget all that made me human?

It must be so. For have I not betrayed them as surely as I’ve betrayed my prince regent?

“Human rebirth is not your destiny, either. You are chosen, brother. Your war skills are needed for a higher purpose.” The God slips off his mount, his garments rustling in agitation. “This unjust war has pushed the Cosmos to the vortex of a cataclysm. Tomorrow, the Kuru War will end. Fearing its outcome, the Celestials rolled the Die of Fate and have unwittingly bestowed on Demon Kali untold powers.” Lord Yama bares his fangs in disgust at the foolish gamble. “Imagine the havoc that asura and his minions will wreak on the weak if left unchecked. The Human Realm must be safeguarded during Kali’s dark reign.”

I can imagine the horror only too well as I have battled with evil all my life. But I am done with wars. 
I am done with defeat. I won’t waste another lifetime fighting.

“With due respect, my lord, I am not the man for this task.”

“You are not a man at all,” Yama thunders, fists shaking. “You are the son of Surya, the Sun God. Accept that you are no ordinary soul.”

I say nothing. I think nothing. I feel something but I squash it down.

Lord Yama’s thick black brows draw together. “Demon Kali will try to pervade every particle of good that exists in the Cosmos, beginning with the corruptible Human Realm. Once he obliterates all of humanity, he’ll set his sights on the Celestials. Kali will not stop until he’s destroyed our way of life. But you can stop him. You are light to his darkness. Do you understand now why you had to betray him? Your beloved humans need you, Karna. I need you. Our father believes in you. Claim your rightful place in the Cosmos.”

Impatiently, Lord Yama removes the iron medallion from his neck and holds it out. The vermillion sunstone glows as if its soul is on fire. Nay! It is my soul that is on fire.

Indescribable energy curls through me. I gasp, though not in pain. I shudder and feel myself grow large, grow hot. Was this rebirth?

I am strong, full-bodied and lethal once more. Then I roar as light bursts forth from my very core and I throb with glorious, blinding power. When I come to myself, my world has changed again. Bubbles of color shimmer all around me: cobalt and saffron, azure and rose. By karma! They are souls. Infinite floating souls.

“Behold the spectrum of life: the worthy, the notorious, the righteous and the sinners.” The God of Death’s soul was a worthy sapphire blue with a tinge of silver. “Your duty, should you choose to accept the office of the Soul Warrior, is to hunt down the red-souled asuras and crush them. Whatever you decide, I wish you a long and successful Celestial existence, Karna,” Yama booms out and vanishes into the purpling sky.

The parley has stunned me. The world of color holds me in thrall. I was dead. Yet, now I am not. A new path lies before me. Unwanted, unwelcome, I insist on principle. I close my eyes. Open them to stare at the medallion cupped in my hand—a golden-hued hand at once familiar and not—and know myself for a fool. I do want this. It’s what I am.

Bastard-born. Rebel. Son. Husband. Father. Warlord. And protector. I fist the talisman, buoyed by its concrete warmth. This is who I am.

I am the Soul Warrior.

 
About the Author:
 
 
Falguni Kothari is a New York-based South Asian author and an amateur Latin and Ballroom dance silver medalist with a semi-professional background in Indian Classical dance. She’s published in India in contemporary romance with global e-book availability; Bootie and the Beast (Harlequin Mills and Boon) and It’s Your Move, Wordfreak! (Rupa & Co.), and launches a mythic fantasy series with Soul Warrior (The Age of Kali, #1)I’m embarrassed to admit how many social media accounts I own :

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