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An Unending Curiosity

Valena D'Angelis
Valena D’Angelis Author Interview

Tempest of Bravoure follows a runaway mage who must face a false king while also facing her own demons. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling story?

My first, almost innate answer is Star Wars. I loved the movie Rogue One and wrote my story around the same emotions that I got from the movie. I wanted Star Wars in a D&D-inspired setting. I am a huge fan of “fighting is the only choice we’ve got.” I love to see heroes go through hell and back, develop bonds, fight side by side for a cause bigger than them. There is a certain selflessness to it that I admire, being ready to give your life for the freedom of your sisters and brothers.

Ahna is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character development?

I wanted to create a powerful yet vulnerable heroine. There are not enough epic fantasy books where a woman with that kind of history takes on such a crucial mission. Ahna’s past makes her who she is today, the good and the bad. She carries a lot of shame, but she keeps on fighting, because her moral compass and ideals are stronger than the pain she endured. Ahna relies on logic and knowledge to solve most of her problems today, but she does become emotional when things get too difficult. Despite what she’s been through, she has an unending curiosity for everything mysterious. She gets a kick from the unknown. Though she will never admit it to herself, Ahna wouldn’t be able to live without the thrill of adventure.

What were some themes that you wanted to focus on in this book?

Fighting for a doomed cause while still having the hopes to succeed. The rebels knew the chances they’d win were close to none, yet they kept on going, because it was better than not fighting. We live brave. We die free. That is Kingdom Ascent’s motto. One other theme was dragging your past and owning it. We all have secrets. We all have done things we regret. Some of us carry a history we loathe. But it doesn’t define who we are. We make our own identity, and there is always a way to redemption. Well, maybe not for Xandor!

This is book one in your Tempest of Bravoure series. What can readers expect in book two?

Book Two, which is coming out next week, will follow Ahna on her next quest to find the lost magi. She believed them and her husband to be dead after the war, but she has just found evidence that they might have saved themselves. This story will be very different from the first one. Kingdom Ascent was about unity and freedom, while Castaway is much more about moving on, inner conflict, finding a way back home and all the challenges that come with it. There is a stronger focus on the characters and what they have to deal with after the end of a war that tore thousands apart.

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We live brave. We die free. 

Darkness has fallen upon the golden kingdom of Bravoure. Once the beacon of an alliance uniting four races, Bravoure is now under the oppression of an elven prince from beneath the surface. Not even the Dragonborn from prophecy was able to stop him from conquering the land. Ahna, a runaway mage, rises above the decades of grief and returns to the fight, where she joins the united soldiers of the Resistance. Despite her origins, she is accepted by these brave heroes who will never let their differences stand in the way of freedom. She and the rebels soon embark on a covert mission to save the kingdom, but the past and the secrets she keeps will soon come knocking, and Ahna will face her demons as she faces the false king.
Tempest of Bravoure: Kingdom Ascent is the first book of the Tempest of Bravoure series.

Voice of a Crimson Angel Part I: Persecution

Voice of a Crimson Angel Part I: Persecution (Reverence Book 5) by [Landeros, Joshua]

The fifth installment of the Reverence series, Voice of a Crimson Angel, by Joshua Landeros is both an intimate and thrilling look at the lead up to his debut military science fiction series. Julissa Marconi’s life was pulled apart after her husband went into a coma. Her relationship with her daughter is on the brink of falling apart, friends have disappeared from her life, and the only solace she finds is at the bottom of a bottle. This all changes when Dr. Neeson offers her an open door to change her life and with the help of allies like Captain Halsey, and she grabs the opportunity to fight. The ever-scheming Chancellor Venloran has his own designs afoot for the expansion of the United Nation Republic.

With this new trilogy Landeros is giving background and context for his series, while also showing that the ever present villain of Venloran has been around for a long time in all of his power. If you’ve already read all the way up to Ballad of Demise, then this is another superb excuse to dive back into this torn apart world of super soldiers and war.

Landeros still manages to deliver on his strengths of dialogue and action. The beginning of this novel might start slow, but it picks up that familiar fast pace I have become accustomed to from this writer. Still heavily leaning into the military science fiction legacy, Landeros uses this to full effect in the near future of the United States and pushes it further with the backstory development of characters we haven’t either met or gotten fully developed in past stories.

While, the ending clearly makes room for a sequel, the novel itself is still satisfying on its own merit. It will be a treat to see where this new series goes and if there is something new waiting for us at the end, which we can hope. This stage setting series should please fans of the books and of science fiction in general with the way it keeps to the best tropes, while making fresh the well trampled ground of such narratives. Landeros keeps pushing his world deeper and expanding the horizon of both the characters and story line while managing to give readers a ride they won’t soon forget.

Pages: 207 | ASIN: B079H4FBKS

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