The golden kingdom was a shining hope and a place for uniting races. Now it is under the oppression of dark and deadly forces. Prophecies couldn’t stop this dark prince from striving for power, and now he wants to rule all. Who can stop him? The runaway mage Ahna who is hiding something? The Resistance? Can the soldiers unite and take the kingdom back for good, or will secrets tear everything apart?
Tempest of Bravoure sets up a thrilling adventure novel that is brimming with imaginative characters. I love epic fantasy tales, and I love when people realize that they either need to fight the bad guy or the bad guy will oppress you until you’re all dead anyway. In these types of stories, you see human characters emerge and the power of the human spirit is tested. I thought I was going to like Ahna right away. Her character was written in such a way that even though you know she’s hiding things, in most cases, you would still want to root for her. I found her character slightly annoying sometimes and could understand why some of the other characters would fight with her (like Cedric). Other times I felt for her character and wanted to cry for her. With other characters and their sad fate, I did cry and felt that their ending was too painful, but it compelled me to keep going and finish the book to find out what happened to the rest of the characters. Cedric, in particular, was one character that made me cry because his character teaches you so much, and his story with Ahna was beautiful. This is definitely a story for readers who enjoy intriguing and well developed characters. There’s an interesting plot at the heart of this story, but I felt like the characters were the star of the show.
While I enjoyed the world building and intricate lore embedded in the world, I felt that the story got a bit confusing at times. In rare moments I wasn’t sure who was doing what and for which reasons. I bit more succinct exposition at the right moments would have provided some clarity. Otherwise, this is a fast paced novel that fits well within the epic fantasy genre. Author Valena D’Angelis has written a story that feels like there’s so much more to be explored. Highly recommended to fans of military fantasy novels.
Pages: 284 | ASIN: B08FXWDX3N
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Reign: The Assault of Lucifer Morningstar follows a powerful shifter as he defends the citizens of Florence from a satanic mob. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling story?
I have written two vampire mystery thrillers previous to Reign: Snow Blood (a 5-book series about the original vampire) and Moon Blood (a sequel to Snow Blood) along with a Prequel entitled, Kane – The First Blood Son. Reign takes characters from those two books as well as introducing new ones (spawned from characters in the first books). Reign Book 1 was a natural progression and is soon to be followed up with Reign – The Rise of The Lich (Book 2 of the Silver Blood Knight Series.)
Honestly, I was inspired because I wanted to create something quite different from the vampire/paranormal stories I grew up with and loved.
Reign is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind his character development?
All my books are narrated by either dogs or wolves. They symbolize loyalty, persistence, a fierce protective nature, and unconditional love for all who are family and friends. I strive to have people answer this question for themselves: If they can love us in this way, why can’t we do the same for each other?
What were some themes you wanted to explore in this book?
Obviously good vs. evil. But more importantly, as stated above, I wanted to show what unconditional love means… loving a person or creature for who he or she is, and not what we want them to be. I wanted to examine what it means to be loyal and how some things aren’t what we think they are.
This is the first book in the Silver Blood Knight series. What can readers expect in book two?
Our heroes will be given another almost invincible antagonist to battle. I’ll dive deeper into the inner workings of the heroic band, and they will have to contend with numerous surprise attacks from unexpected sources in book 2. Through it all, their love for and loyalty to each other will shine.
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The Literary Titan Book Awards are awarded to books that have astounded and amazed us with unique writing styles, vivid worlds, complex characters, and original ideas. These books deserve extraordinary praise and we are proud to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and imagination of these talented authors.
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Strands of Existence follows a woman who leaves her home and must piece together her memories while navigating a new world. What was the inspiration for the setup to this riveting story?
These sorts of questions are difficult for me as I’m very much a “pantser” when it comes to characters and plot. I see most things in my head in movie form. It always starts with the main character’s image and name. After some prodding, they start to reveal a little more about their nature which will, in turn, help me to make them into a more believable person and get a feel whether the story is going to have a happy or sad ending, or something in-between. I have conversations with them, or sometimes as them, trying to reason their positions on moral issues (which I’m sure amuses my neighbors as they see me prattling to myself in the garden).
Istrae is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character development?
I wanted to illuminate her hunger to belong and know more about herself and explore how much she would be willing to go through for such revelations. To me, she is a character that can become a hero or a villain in the course of the story, and I want the reader to know her intimately so her decisions make sense intuitively when we get to some darker issues later on in the series.
What were some themes that you wanted to focus on in this book?
Finding oneself, finding a place to belong, someone to belong to, and how much of all that is up to the person. The battle between wanting something and knowing that to get it you have to deprive someone else of something (which is probably an overarching theme for the series starting with smaller personal issues at first and progressing to a larger scale later on).
This is book one in your Strands of Existence series. What can readers expect in book two?
Book 2 (working title “Sea of Shadows”) will open up new parts of the city and the natural laws of the magic system more. We’ll dive a little into the world of Istrae’s love interest as Rime’s Guard with the army behind him steps into the light. Much of the book will focus on events just leading up to and happening during the civil war within the city. Hopefully, the next book will be out in 2021 either in late spring or early autumn.
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Strands of Existence: Island Girl follows a woman who is desperate to leave her home. Her home is an island that is feeling less like home and more like a prison. Her destination is the City of Light and Abundance. A city name that perfectly reflects her mental image of it. When her journey to the city ends in disaster, she arrives with scattered memories, and the city is not what she thought it would be. Can she learn the rules of her new life without attracting unwanted attention?
Author Aino Lahteva has created a detailed world that is grounded in reality, even though it is filled with magic and religion. This is a character driven fantasy story, with our protagonist Istrae, going through a slow evolution throughout the book that is consistently intriguing. She goes from almost marrying a man out of necessity and turns into a strong woman that embraces her destiny with vigor. The world in which this story exists always seems like there is deeper lore behind everything, and we’re only scratching the surface of a much larger story. Magic and religion is seamlessly blended into the world and the story in a unique way that elevates this book from a simple fantasy story and into an epic fantasy novel. While I heartily enjoyed the story I felt like the ending was not as fulfilling as I wanted it to be. This leads me to yearn for a follow up book, but I would have enjoyed a more complete ending.
Strands of Existence: Island Girl is a different type of fantasy story that breaks the mold of the epic fantasy genre in an entertaining way. I recommend this book to sword and sorcery fans looking for some romance added to the mix of a fantasy story that doesn’t overwhelm you with specifics and focuses instead on delivering human drama that is easily enjoyed.
Pages: 261 | ASIN: B08GS8XNQ6
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I thought the Tales of Elhaanai had a unique setup and an interesting premise. What were some sources that informed this novels development?
This story came to me in an actual dream. I woke Up early one morning with the visual of a heavily pregnant Alanna running for her life through a misty forest. I was in a place in my life where I felt stagnant, I had been praying to God for guidance. This is what I was given. And it stated me on a path I am excited to continue.
I enjoyed your intriguing and well developed characters. Who was your favorite character to write for?
I loved All my characters but I have had the most fun writing Akronius and Wleia.
What were some themes that were important for you to focus on in this book?
Faith was the primary theme I wanted my readers to grasp. Faith in the path you are meant to walk and also that where you begin does not automatically determine where you end up. You can decide which road you will take. We all have a great propensity for good or evil, we have to decide which will win.
This is book one in your forthcoming series. What can readers expect in book two?
Yes. Book two will be released in January and the ebook is available for preorder now. It gets a bit darker in book two, and some lines are clearly drawn while others are crossed entirely. Book three will hopefully be released in May 2021 as well.
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The Spires of Dasny follows a young woman who attends the Dragon Rider School, but faces more challenges than she expected. What was the inspiration for the setup to this riveting story?
The inspiration came from a few different directions. A few months before starting this story, I saw a picture of a dragon gliding over a rocky terrain. Such things also kick my daydreaming mind into gear. I have also been participating in a writing group where each month we write to a prompt with a given word count limit. It is amazing what stories are spurred on by such things. The book developed from writing from three or four prompts and I fell for the characters and decided to develop it into a book.
Seyra and Dreyth are intriguing and well developed characters. What were some driving ideals behind their character development?
What happens most of the time, when I begin writing something fresh and new, I see a mini movie of a scene in my head and begin writing. All I knew of Seyra is she had always dreamed of being a dragon rider. She held the dream so tight that the stories that enriched her life drove her up the Spires in her greatest time of need. Dreyth developed as a protector and best friend, often seeing things in Seyra she couldn’t see, both bad and good.
I appreciated how well defined the dragon lore was in your book. What kind of research and development went into developing them in this novel?
I refused to read many books about dragons when I wrote my first series, The Legend of the Dragon Child, for fear of my dragons appearing a carbon copy of other dragons. After getting that series out, I learned something. I think most fantasy writers have the same concepts of things we haven’t seen. I was amazed at how many things my books had in common with other books, such as dragon and human being able to communicated through their minds.
I became ravenous to read more books of dragon stories, so I’m sure a part of them resonates in my current writing. I am a panster by design. The thought of outlining a book is cringe-worthy and shoots up a brick wall in my mind. I simply sit each day, write the day’s date and when my fingers hit the keyboard, we’re off for a new adventure.
Will this book be part of a series? If so, what can readers expect in book two?
Oh yes! It is a series in the making! I just finished book two, handed it off to the editor and making the final decisions on the cover as I write.
Book 2 is a wild ride. There will be twists and turns and surprises around ever corner. I get goosebumps thinking of it. It takes place five years after Book 1 and the main characters have grown. The Dragon School is in full operation and is enjoying a peace in their kingdom–until something dreadful happens to shatter their world.
Book 3 is now in the works. Will there be more? It depends on what is accomplished in Book 3. In my mind I see it as a four to five book series but I’ll have to wait to see what happens.
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Tales of Elhaanai, by Nicole Thomas, is a mystical fantasy tale of power and betrayal. It is a book that follows the rightful heir to the throne of Elhaanai on a journey to regain his destiny. In the thirst for power, the King of Elhaanai is killed by his sister and is also after the life of the Queen of Elhaanai who is pregnant with a child. She gets cornered and shot with an arrow. However, she is determined to save her unborn child and so through a magical ritual, the Queen puts the soul of her child into a widow named Wleia, who herself is already pregnant. Wleia gives birth to twins. Sixteen years later, the son Eric and his twin sister from Wleia set out to regain the throne which was snatched from his parents and is his ultimate destiny.
Tales of Elhaanai is the first in a series of fantasy books by author Nicole Thomas. This novel delivers the perfect setup for a series that will be steeped in family rivalries and bitter battles for power. Nicole Thomas is a wonderful story-teller and immediately pulls you into the book with plot twists, magic, suspense, and much more, from the very start. The characters are well-written with a uniqueness to each of them. One of my favorites is Wleia who is wise and fierce but kind at the same time. She is the unsung hero of this book. However, Nicole still manages to not let the reader get lost in too many characters.
This was a very gripping read with the theme of good vs. evil embedded throughout. The novel is fast-paced and the character development is strong. Another central theme of the novel is Faith. Walking on the path of destiny to regain the lost destiny requires a lot of faith and it is well incorporated into this novel.
The writing is sharp for a first-time writer. Although I would have liked to explore the preceding life of the Queen and King of Elhaanai a bit more and in the beginning, it is a bit harder to make sense of where we are starting, the novel is still engaging for the rest of the story.
The words are crisp and clear and the ending leaves you wanting more. I believe Tales of Elhaanai can be enjoyed by both young adults and new adults alike. Tales of Elhaanai is a very entertaining fantasy novel that was hard to put down.
Pages: 130 | ASIN: B0874DYVJB
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