Tag Archives: tor

Author Interview: Stephen R. Lawhead

2040D016-DE0C-4F3D-94DE-CFB3ECA53A64Lisa (@ Over the Effing Rainbow), Jorie (@ Jorie Loves a Story) and imyril (@ One More) are delighted to bring you WYRD AND WONDER, where they plan to celebrate all things fantastical throughout the month of May!


Today I am interviewing Stephen R. Lawhead, author of the new fantasy novel, In the Region of the Summer Stars, first book in his latest series: Eirlandia.

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DJ: Hi Stephen! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Stephen R. Lawhead: Hi, DJ. It’s a pleasure to be here. I’ve been writing professionally for over 30 years, so many readers will already know that most of my books tend to be placed on the fantasy and science-fiction shelves of the various bookstores. For anyone curious about the more mundane details, I usually direct them to my official website: http://www.stephenlawhead.com, or my Facebook page.

DJ: The title of this new book, In the Region of the Summer Stars …. I think I remember a book by that name, and it’s about King Arthur. What gives?


SRJ: Actually, I think maybe your book is called Taliessin Through Logres and The Region of the Summer Stars. I have it, too, in fact. (As well as an old vinyl LP by an Irish group called The Enid.) These are two brilliant epic poems by the genius writer Charles Williams. For me, that phrase conjured up the sort of Otherworld feel I wanted for Eirlandia and, fortunately, there is no copyright or trademarking of book titles, so I felt free to use simply because it’s such a beautiful and evocative phrase, and one I repurpose and put to good use in the story.

Eirlandia is set in the great golden age of Ireland’s mystical past—part history, part fantasy, but totally inspiring. It is loosely based on the kinds of events, characters, culture, and life you find recorded in Ireland’s legendary Lebor Gabála Érenn, or more often called, The Book of Invasions which records a seeminly never-ending series of invasions of the island by various tribes and races—including faéries, and the Tuatha Dé Danann. Both of these folk come to the forefront in my tale. Continue reading

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Author Interview: Alex Bledsoe


Today I am interviewing Alex Bledsoe, author of the new fantasy novel, The Fairies of Sadieville, final book in the Tufa series.

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DJ: Hi Alex! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Alex Bledsoe: I’m originally from Tennessee, and eight of my thirteen novels are set there. I started writing as a journalist, and published over fifty short stories in various small press magazines and journals before my first novel, The Sword-Edged Blonde, came out in 2007. I’m married with three kids, and now live in a Wisconsin village famous for having wooden troll statues scattered around town.

DJ: What is The Fairies of Sadieville and then the Tufa series about?


Alex: The series is about a race of exiled faery folk who live in Appalachia. For the most part they’re indistinguishable from human beings and only show their magic in their music.

The Fairies of Sadieville begins with the discovery of a silent film from 1915 that shows a Tufa girl dropping her glamour and revealing her true faery nature. Through this, the vanished coal town of Sadieville is rediscovered, and with it a possible way for the Tufa to return to their homes in Faeryland…if the queen who exiled them will allow it.

DJ: What were some of your influences for the Tufa series?

Alex: A whole bunch of disparate and random things mentally clicked together to create the Tufa. Growing up in Tennessee, I heard many stories about the people of the mountains, including groups steeped in mystery and danger. Then, in the late 90s, I attended my first National Storytelling Festival in Jonesborough, TN, which is the ancestral home of my dad’s family in Appalachia. The idea of writing about that area really grabbed hold of me then, but it took a long time to sort out exactly what I wanted to do with it. Immersing myself in the music of the region, both classic and current, really helped, and music became one of the foundations of the Tufa. Continue reading

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Author Interview: Tessa Gratton


Today I am interviewing Tessa Gratton, author of the new fantasy novel, The Queens of Innis Lear.

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DJ: Hi Tessa! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Tessa Gratton: Thanks for having me! This is my adult fantasy debut, but I’ve been writing young adult fantasy since 2009–I have two series, The Blood Journals and The United States of Asgard, as well as two books for teen writers about writing fantasy. I have my degree in Gender Studies, and thanks to growing up in a Navy family I’ve lived on several continents and traveled all over the world.

DJ: What is The Queens of Innis Lear about?


Tessa: It’s a feminist fantasy re-imagining of Shakespeare’s King Lear, and is about the different ways love and family can be poisoned by toxic patriarchy, about different forms of strength and how we make terrible choices thinking they’re for the best. There’s war, romance, international politics, violent magic and talking trees.

DJ: What were some of your influences for The Queens of Innis Lear?

Tessa: Besides Shakespeare? LOL. I wanted QUEENS to feel both epic and intimate, where dynasties and family histories weave and tangle in tragic ways, which is something that I admire in writers like Juliet Marillier, especially her Daughter of the Forest series, everything N.K. Jemisin has done, but for this her Dreamblood series in particular, Anne Rice in The Witching Hour, and Melina Marchetta’s The Lumatere Chronicles. Continue reading

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Author Interview: Steven Brust


[photo by David Dyer-Bennet]

Today I am interviewing Steven Brust, author of the new fantasy novel, Good Guys.

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DJ: Hey Steven! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Steven: Coming back to this question after doing the others, no, thank YOU. This turned out to be really fun. And as for me, I’m a Minnesotan; we don’t like to talk about ourselves.

DJ: What is Good Guys about?


Steven: I’ve always loved teams. There’s a term I first heard from Elizabeth Bear: “competence porn,” the pleasure of watching someone do something he or she is skilled at. With a team, there’s the additional pleasure of seeing how they fit together. That’s one reason we all loved “Leverage.” We did all love “Leverage,” right? So Good Guys is about a team whose job it is to investigate, and sometimes deal with, abuses of magic. And of course, they each have different skills.

DJ: Could you briefly tell us a little about your main characters? Do they have any cool quirks or habits, or any reason why readers with sympathize with them? Aka What makes them compelling?

Steven: What makes them compelling to me (I don’t know if they’re compelling to you, of course) is the way their particular skills manifest, and the way in which their personalities are expressed through their skills, and their skills are expressed through their personalities. Did that make sense? Two cooks might be equally good, but their approaches can be very different depending on their character: methodical or exuberant, careful or daring. Sometimes the way someone approaches a craft will be in line with other aspects of personality, other times it will be the opposite. I love playing with that stuff. Continue reading

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Author Interview: Sue Burke


Today I am interviewing Sue Burke, author of the new science-fiction novel, Semiosis.

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DJ: Hi Sue! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Sue: Hi DJ! Beyond what it says in my bio, I always wanted to be a writer, even as a child before I learned to read. I worked for a long time as a journalist and loved that job. But I always loved science fiction, too, and after a while, I decided to try writing that. Now, twenty years later, my first novel is being published. I couldn’t be happier and more excited.

Science fiction draws me in because of the kinds of questions it can ask. In this novel, I ask about intelligence: how can different kinds of intelligence coexist? How will they inevitably misunderstand each other?

DJ: What is Semiosis about?


Sue: A small group of humans arrives at a planet to found an agricultural colony. Soon they discover the planet has its own dominant life forms that have their own demands. Can the colonists afford to agree? The story continues from one generation to the next as they try to survive and adapt to their new home and its inhabitants.

DJ: What were some of your influences for Semiosis?

Sue: When my houseplants began misbehaving, I discovered how horrible plants are. A vine called a pothos wrapped around another and blocked all light and killed it, and a philodendron tried to sink its roots into a neighboring plant. With a little research, I learned that, as one botanist put it, “All plants of a given place are in a state of war with respect to each other.” And plants are armed and deadly. For example, the strangler fig, a jungle plant, grows on an existing tree, using it as a prop, and when the fig is strong enough, it strangles the tree and takes its place.  Continue reading

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Can’t-Wait Wednesday: Medusa Uploaded (Medusa Cycle #1) by Emily Devenport

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they’re books that have yet to be released. It’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Medusa Uploaded (Medusa Cycle #1) by  Emily Devenport

(May, 2018 by TOR)

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Author Interview: Ken Scholes

Today I am interviewing Ken Scholes, author of the, Psalms of Issak series, whose first four book are being re-released in a bundle for Nook, Kindle, and Kobo on August 15. The first volume of the Psalms of Isaak, Lamentation, was published by Tor in 2009 and the fifth anf final volume, Hymn, comes out in December.

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DJ: Hey Ken! Thanks for agreeing to do this interviews! 🙂

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Ken Scholes: Thanks for interviewing me, DJ. My name is Ken Scholes. I’m a speculative fiction writer among other things. I broke into print back in 2000 through the short story market and then, after winning Writers of the Future, I started writing novels. My series, The Psalms of Isaak, is what I’m best known for – I’ve been working on it for over a decade and the final book comes out in just a few months.

DJ: What is Psalms of Issak series about?

Ken: The world’s largest, most important city is suddenly destroyed and a key group of witnesses to that city’s fall are pulled into a labyrinth of intrigue as war erupts and various factions seek to solve the mystery of Windwir’s destruction. As the series progresses, the characters learn that they are part of a larger world – and a broader web – than they realized as they are changed by their experiences. Of course, it starts with a king finding a metal man weeping in an impact crater and goes from there….

DJ: What were some of your influences for Psalms of Issak series?

Ken: I was heavily influenced by more writers than I could list – Bradbury certainly at the top of that list. And in the early years of the series, watching Ron Moore’s re-imagined Battlestar Galactica, J.J. Abram’s Lost and Joss Whedon’s Firefly all had impacts on me when it came to storytelling. I was also influenced a great deal in my early years by Dungeons and Dragons and a host of other TSR role-playing games. Continue reading

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Book Review: Hellknight (Pathfinder Tales #32) by Liane Merciel

Hellknight (Pathfinder Tales #32) by Liane Merciel

Publisher: Tor

Publication Date: April 5, 2016

Edition: Paperback, 432 pages

Genre: Dark Fantasy, Mystery

Rating: 3.5/5

Do I want to read more Pathfinder Tales? HELL YES.
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The Friday Face-Off: Just Then Flew Down a Monstrous Crow

Welcome to The Friday Face-Off, a new weekly meme hosted by Books by Proxy. Join us every Friday as we pit cover against cover, and publisher against publisher, to find the best artwork in our literary universe.

The Friday Face-Off: Just Then Flew Down a Monstrous Crow

The Last Mortal Bond (Chronicles of The Unhewn Throne #3) by Brian Staveley










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Book Review: Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear

Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear

Publisher: Tor Books

Publication Date: February 3, 2015

Edition: Hardcover, 350 pages

Genre: Steampunk, Western, LGBT

Rating: 3.5/5 Rating

The tastiest steampunk novel you’ll read!
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