Tag Archives: Fantasy

Author Interview: ‘The Chronicles of Terlan: Daedala’ by Dañiel L. Garcia

About the Book:

The Chronicles of Terlan describe the lives of the inhabitants of the forgotten continent Terlan, which is rumoured to be guarded by dragons. These tales tell of the time before, and during the events, leading to Terlan’s destruction. Among these witnesses is Asmada, a former member of a Triumvirate of Immortals that ruled Terlan in centuries past. He seeks revenge and searches for the path to regain his lost power. Unwillingly drawn into these events are Dae and her family. After catastrophe leads her life to ruin Dae joins forces with Asmada. Together they traverse Terlan seeking the aid of like-minded individuals and the guardian dragons to help defeat Prometh, leader of the soldiers of the Light, and to restore Terlan’s peaceful balance.

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Purchase Links:

Amazon – UK / US

Author Interview:

1: Tell us a little about yourself and what got you in to writing?

I’m German/Puerto Rican, born in Germany. I grew up reading my father’s sci-fi and fantasy books, comics, and watching Star Trek. I remember starting to write during the time when roleplay forums were popular; writing stories in threads and such. Sadly I lost touch with that when going to university, then I rediscovered writing several years ago. I had come up with my own background for a character in a game, and since that story didn’t let me go during my studies in Japan I decided to turn into a novel.

2: Do you have a favourite time and place where you write?

Depends when I have time. At first it was when the mood struck me because I was busy with my studies. But afterwards I planned a few hours in the evening to keep at it. So usually afternoons. If I’m just doing a rough outline then I usually sit-in during the orchestra rehearsals at the local university. Otherwise at home or wherever it’s quiet.

3: Where do your ideas come from?

If it’s for a sci-fi story then usually from reading an article. Otherwise I might just see something during the day that gives me an idea or that helps me flesh out a part of a story. Otherwise I try to think about how my stories should naturally progress or what the characters would do in a situation.

4: Do you have a plan in your head of where the story is going before you start writing or do you let it carry you along as you go?

I think it’s a mix of both. I either have an overarching story I’d like to tell with a beginning and end, then I try to write out how I get there. Sometimes I have specific scenes and situations in my head, then I try to figure out how I could connect those into something larger.

5: What genre are your books and what drew you to that genre?

My main focus are sci-fi and fantasy, as a general setting. I usually don’t quite think in hard lines of genre since I might like to write a story that involves something like AI, but may be a romance or a thriller. Because I read quite a lot of fantasy and comics as a child I always liked to read things that are just able to exist in your imagination. Sci-fi I like due to reading Asimov’s robot stories, and watching Star Trek. I like stories that go into how we deal with new technology or how it evolves and is used in the future.

6: What dream cast would you like to see playing the characters in your latest book?

I haven’t thought much about that. At least not for all characters of The Chronicles of Terlan. I need to say that I intentionally tried not to be too detailed in describing any ethnic features for the characters, because I wanted them to be open for anyone. So there can be no debate about this character needs to be from here or from there.

For Dae/Daedala I had thought about having two actresses play her. One for the beginning of the book, and another for the later parts. I’d definitely like to see Zoe Saldana as Daedala, even though she would have to wear make-up again. A close second would be Danai Gurira.

For Jo I could imagine the Rock playing him because I think he could pull of the “you know I’m just acting like a barbarian” type of thing with a wink and keep it serious.

7: Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors?

Since my life has gotten complicated during and after university, not as much as before. But my favourite English authors, since childhood, are Douglas Adams, Piers Anthony, and Isaac Asimov. For Japanese I like Uehashi Nahoko and Hideyuki Kikuchi. I recently managed to read Patrick Rothfuss’ Kingkiller Chronicles. I like his style of writing and now consider him to be my unofficial rival. His writing impressed me a lot, so I’m somewhat jealous and want to get mine to be at least as good as his, haha.

8: What book/s are you reading at present?

I’m currently trying to catch up with my backlog of Japanese books. I just finished a Kindaichi K≈çsuke detective novel from Yokomizo Seiji, and recently started the third book of Uehashi Nahoko’s Kemono no S≈çja (The Beast Player) series. I also have a Vampire Hunter D novel by Hideyuki lying around.

9: What is your favourite book and why?

Definitely the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Complete Edition. All the five original books together. The reason is that they describe to you just how unfair and illogical the universe or world can be, and that not everything is as you expect it to be. And that things that we consider normal are just as nonsensical, when viewed from a different perspective.

10: What advice would you give for someone thinking about becoming a writer?

Besides to be rich and let other people write for you? Writing is the fun part, letting your imagination go and just putting into words. Critiquing, editing, and revising are the hard parts I think, especially if you’re self-publishing. You probably won’t have all the finances to get everything done like a traditional publisher, so it can be frustrating at times to get everything going.

11: What are the best Social Media Sites for people to find out about you and your work?

You can find me on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads. If you’re just interested in the blog, you can find that at my website. I usually write about the work on my current projects.

Website: www.daniel-l-garcia.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Author.Daniel.Garcia

Twitter: @Author_D_Garcia

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/14245901.Da_iel_L_Garcia

Amazon page: www.amazon.com/Da%C3%B1iel-Garcia/e/B014G8PONY

 

 

About the Author:

Dañiel L. Garcia was born in Bitburg, Germany into a German/Puerto Rican household. Growing up with Star Trek, fantasy books, and American comics from his father he began reading from an early age. There is photographic evidence of his father holding a child in one arm while holding a book in the other, so it is indeed hereditary.

After a short run in with computer science Dañiel matriculated at the University of Trier, initially studying Japanology and Computational Linguistics. He slowly leant towards a major in Japanology with two minors in English Literatue and Media Science, specialising in Film.

The year of study in Japan reopened his eyes to writing and he began work on his “Daedala” story. In 2015 he graduated Magister Artium (~Master of Arts). Having already written most of the manuscript before starting his Magister thesis he continued to write after finding his day job. Inbetween he managed to self-publish his first work, the short story “Just For A While”.

Next to writing his book, he also worked as a freelance translator, and occasional animator. He is inspired by classic science fiction and fantasy themes, and likes creating characters with their own unique abilities and flaws.

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Book Review: ‘Spellcaster’ by George Bachman

Title: Spellcaster

Published: 3rd April 2017

Publisher: Sublime Ltd

Author: George Bachman

Facebook: www.facebook.com/OfficialBachman

Twitter: @OfficialBachman

 

Synopsis:

In a turn-of-the century England steeped in steampunk and magic, Christine learns her life-threatening illness stems from her paranormal visions. During the London Season, Allie, her beloved sister and the family heir, seeks a noble match while she searches the occult underground for answers. But the only witch who can help will not do so unless Allie marries her beau, an impoverished aristocrat, so that the illicit pair can share Allie’s wealth.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book involving time travel. Well in a way it does as you have reincarnated souls needing to travel back to their past lives to finish a quest they were on to stop a great evil.

Christine has always felt different, mainly with the things she can do – a witch’s craft growing perhaps? Right from the start she feels the need to search for two people – Rodham and Valerie – though she doesn’t really know why, just that she needs to. She keeps calling on different spirits to help her quest, each stronger than the last, to try to find them. Seems in a way she is also connected to someone Rodham knows. Spirits reincarnates perhaps? So whom have they really gone into? Seems this is where Sir Thomas comes into play – her past life. Seems these past lives have merged with the present ones and might even be able to manipulate them into doing things to help their cause – no matter the trouble it causes.

She also seems to get weird feelings about certain people or situations but doesn’t really know what to do about them when they come about. Could this really be her or is it more to do with Sir Thomas? In his time magic is around more openly and this could be what she is drawing her feelings from. Could bad feelings be because the people she meets have past souls she, or more precisely Sir Thomas, knew.

One of the things that might be more her past self’s doing than her own is helping Lord Serton woo her close friend Allie. The reason isn’t for true love but more to do with what Lady Kinloss can gain and help her with if the match is set. From this moment on Christine has almost been charged with seeing all those close to her wed by her friends and Allie’s sisters. A job she may wish she never agreed to help with. Might get a lot of matches but are they happy ones? Allie’s it seems might not be. Whether she can find a way out of it though only time will tell.

This is where the story becomes a two in one, with reincarnation playing a part and time going forward and back. I found at times though that I was never quite sure whose head I was in. So it might have benefited with names at the top of chapters so you could understand quicker whether you were inside Christine’s head or Sir Thomas’s. The story shifts to focus more on Sir Thomas near the end than Christine. She was almost a means to an end to get him back to where it all started so he could defeat a great evil.

The great evil to be defeated in the past before the future is lost is Hane, a Spellcaster who seems to be ruling by an evil hand. His actions saw a turn of events lead those around into a darker future. His followers seem to have gone into their future selves to try to stop Sir Thomas – aka Christine – and Rodham – aka Edmund – from getting the key back to their time along with an urn. Both needed in taking the spellcaster and his followers down. Once the master fails his kingdom soon crumbles. Let’s see if our time travelling souls can get the job done.

I found this book a bit hard to get into to begin with. Mainly due to the amount of characters being introduced that surrounded Christine. Just when you think the story is going one way it changes course. Now this is actually where the story picked up a bit better. When you go back to the past lives and see how they fair in their quest. Can they save the day to take down an evil ruler? Only time will tell. I feel it could have been split into two books with the first half being closed off a bit better when the stories focus shifts. One had closure but the other is left open. Seems once a mind has merged it’s hard to break completely as they are still plague by what they had to do to get the job done.

3 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

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Author Interview: ‘Escape from Yesterday’ by Frederic Petrovsky

About the Book:

The ultimate time travel adventure! ESCAPE FROM TOMORROW follows Den, a seventeen-year-old who has been a servant in Castle Kuthalds all his life. Den struggles with sexual awakening, and finds himself drawn to Oshana, the Vizier’s strong and alluring daughter. When this forbidden love is discovered by the cruel and obsessive Vizier, he becomes enraged. The Vizier incarcerates Den in the notorious Zakaz prison, and begins a campaign of murdering a generation of his subjects. To set things right, Den is brought to an ancient underground civilization of monstrous shape-shifters that sends him back in time. The plan fails, and Den is transported to an even earlier time. But during both visits to the past, Den inadvertently interacts with himself. This sets in motion a series of perilous escapes in three separate time periods—three different Dens, Oshanas, Umbras, and Viziers.

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Purchase Links:

Amazon – UK / US

Author Interview:

1: Tell us a little about yourself and what got you in to writing?

I was born in Memphis in the shadow of Graceland, the great grandson of a street peddler, the grandson of a corner convenience store shopkeeper in the poorest part of town, and the son of an insurance agent. Writing seemed an impossible, terrible thing . . . until I started doing it. To me, it’s the most precise and difficult art forms.

2: Do you have a favourite time and place where you write?

I write in stolen moments here and there. Waiting for a plane. Five minutes during work. Grocery shopping. I drop these small fragments into my phone and clean them up later. I’m an insanely slow writer.

3: Where do your ideas come from?

I’m afraid of being bored. And I’m afraid of my readers being bored. I tend to look for strange ideas that need to be explored so that they no longer seem bizarre. I write books I’d like to read.

4: Do you have a plan in your head of where the story is going before you start writing or do you let it carry you along as you go?

I start with a premise and start writing. If it continues to hold my interest and if the characters seem worthy, I will keep at it. I usually only know what’s going to happen a chapter at a time. I try to create interesting situations with three-dimensional characters who will tell me what they want to do next. Creating an outline or plot seems artificial and fake.

5: What genre are your books and what drew you to that genre?

My books span genres. Science fiction, fantasy, speculative science. Oh, I also wrote Bill Clinton’s private diary he kept while seeing Monica Lewinsky.

6: What dream cast would you like to see playing the characters in your latest book?

I don’t dream that big.

7: Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors?

Yes, I am always reading. Gabriel Garcia Marquez. John Cheever. Raymond Carver. Philip Roth.

8: What book/s are you reading at present?

In Calabria, by Peter S. Beagle

9: What is your favourite book and why?

Hands down: One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Simply put, it’s the best book I’ve ever read.

10: What advice would you give for someone thinking about becoming a writer?

Don’t do it unless you can’t live without it. Then rethink it. Rewards are rare.

11: What are the best Social Media Sites for people to find out about you and your work?  

I have a terrible website at www.fredpetrovsky.com

 

About the Author:

Fred Petrovsky’s first novel, Frank, was published by Time Warner in 2001. His other novels include Don’t be Cruel and The Clinton Diaries. His work has also appeared in Midstream, Arrive, and The Ritz-Carlton Magazine. He holds an MFA from the University of Arizona.

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Book Review: ‘The Magicians Workshop Volume One’ by Christopher Hansen and J.R. Fehr

Title: The Magicians Workshop Volume One

Published: 8th November 2016

Authors: Christopher Hansen and J.R. Fehr

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Magiciansworkshop

Twitter: @HansenFehr

 

Synopsis:

Everyone in the islands of O’Ceea has a magical ability: whatever they imagine can be brought into existence. Whoever becomes a master over these powers is granted the title of magician and is given fame, power, riches, and glory. This volume of books follows the journey of a group of kids as they strive to rise to the top and become members of the Magician’s Workshop.

Layauna desperately wants to create beautiful things with her magical powers, but all she can seem to do is make horrible, savage monsters. For years she has tried to hide her creations, but when her power is at last discovered by a great magician, she realizes that what she’s tried to hide might actually be of tremendous value.

Kai just wants to use his powers to have fun and play with his friends. Unfortunately, nearly everyone on his island sees him as a bad influence, so he’s forced to meet them in secret. When one of the creatures they create gets out of control and starts flinging fireballs at their town, Kai is tempted to believe that he is as nefarious as people say. However, his prospects change when two mysterious visitors arrive, praising his ability and making extraordinary promises about his future.

Follow the adventures of Kai, Layauna, and a boatload of other characters as they struggle to grow up well in this fantastical world.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book with a number in the title. Seems some have gifts stronger than others but if you don’t have a colour pulled at the ceremony it will be for nothing. Each tale is different from the last but you know that eventually all players will be pulled into the same place. To what end is unclear, only time will tell.

We start with Layauna, a young magician coming into her very powerful powers. Hers seem to be haunting monstrous projection spells though, ones she can’t control yet. It’s a good thing that her grandfather, a very powerful magician, is taking her to the magician’s workshop to train then. Takes a while before we come back to her story and when we do it seems she’s in a loop of how she started, a dome that creates it. Trying to change what happened and control what she creates instead of them being too powerful after she’s created them. With how things pan out it’s not going too well to begin with and she’s been at it a while. Seems her creations might be able to become solid. A dream gift to others but a nightmare to her with what they can do. Nightmare is right; as that’s the kind of things she creates. Just needs longer to control them.

We then start to follow Kai and his friends Talia, Snap, Weston and Luge. Something that draws Kia apart from his friends is that he has a finger of a flame on his hand that won’t ever go out. They all seem to be good at projection spells with knowing what they want to create and being able to control them. Well to a point anyway. Creating a monster for a game is one thing but when it gets out of hand trouble is on its way. Could it affect his flame? People on the island think he’s trouble and after a game gone wrong, could they be right? Seems punishment was cast all round with a projection that got out of hand. Shouldn’t punish too harshly though as it seems the island is suffering due to a lack of a magician and these kids might be the future. So lets see if these creative kids have some colours on the day.

Thought Snaps dad Limmick was a right laugh. His reaction to the kids projecting something they shouldn’t have isn’t anger its ore, as he is so impressed with what they can do. Jade, Kai’s grandmother was interesting too. The fall of her husband and son, Kai’s father, put a dark mark on the family. Kai knows if he doesn’t become a magician he can’t pull them out of their misfortune. Something tourists pay good money to see so silver lining in a little way until time changes their fate.

Kaso has magic inside him too but because he’s an orphan he can’t take part in the colour ceremony until he’s 19, 3 years away. He has the ability to create warmth, which seems handy when the cold comes in. He has a younger brother he longs to protect, Coby. If he goes to region 2 he can go in the ceremony where everyone is already convinced he will have a colour and become a magician. Should he really trust strangers to get him and his brother there though? Eccentric poozers they may be but lets hope they keep their word.

Kalaya and her boyfriend Jaremon seem to be in training mode for her. He’s a mage already, his colour being green. She’s about to go to the ceremony to see the puller. Now she may be able to create things its just the colour of them that’s causing her trouble. Funny thing is that none of them really touch anyone else. You may project the feeling of touch but not many do and to physically touch is unheard of. Join later to see her in the testing stages to receive coins. More coins you have the more freedom you have to practice projections. Also helps with chances at the ceremony with getting a colour.

Let the ceremony begin. Looks like a lot of interesting young characters are about to start training at the magicians’ workshop. Time for a new era of magicians it seems. Emotions seem to play a part in what these kids can do when the time comes to test at 16. An interesting read that does draw you in but there are quite a few main and side characters to try to follow. Maybe when more are linked together it will be a little easier to follow where they might be going and how their lives are going to change forever after the colour ceremony starts. Volume 2 it seems holds all the clues.

4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the authors for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Shadow Eyes’ by Dusty Crabtree

Title: Shadow Eyes (Book 1)

Published: 2nd September 2016

Author: Dusty Crabtree

Facebook: www.facebook.com/dustycrabtreeauthor

Twitter: @dustycrabtree

 

Synopsis:

Iris thought she could ignore the shadows…until they came after everyone she loved.

Seventeen-year-old Iris Kohl has been able to see both dark and light figures ever since a tragic incident three years ago. The problem is, no one else seems to see them, and even worse…the dark figures terrorize humans, but Iris is powerless to stop them.

Although she’s learned to deal with watching shadows harass everyone around her, Iris is soon forced to question everything she thinks she knows about her world and herself. Her sanity, strength, and will power are tested to the limits by not only the shadows, but also a handsome new teacher whose presence scares away shadows, a new friend with an awe-inspiriting aura, and a mysterious, alluring new student whom Iris has a hard time resisting despite already having a boyfriend. As the shadows invade and terrorize her own life and family, Iris must ultimately accept the guidance of an angel to revisit the most horrific event of her life and become the hero she was meant to be.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book about angels. You, along with Iris, might not know they are there to begin with as dark shadows are what she sees first but there has to be balance to everything so light is on its way.

Iris has struggled with a gift that was awoken within her at a dark time in her past. From the moment she opened her eyes the first time to see shadows lurking around those she loved she was scared. She has been afraid of them ever since and has no real clue as it what they are, just that she knows they aren’t good. For three years she has hidden this secret, along with a darker tale from her past. One we don’t learn of until she is ready to face it head on. Now with seeing shadows everywhere, most around people but some flouting close by, she would naturally be drawn to someone who has none or better yet seems to flow lightness from them instead.

From the onset we see a close friendship with Nicole and Lexi but sometimes friends can be fickle when guys are involved. She never really noticed much of the guys in school but slowly and surely the shy advances of Josh get to her. With him comes a group that connects with her friends too. Date night with a crowd of six it seems with some pairings happier than others – Iris and Josh, Nicole and Tyler and Lexi and Sam, though really Lexi has no interest in him at all. Starting something new and exciting with Josh is one thing but when a mysterious stranger comes on the scene it soon causes her to doubt her feelings. Patrick is someone very sure of himself, a classic flirt, so she can never be sure if he is playing or does want to get close. Not that it should matter when she starts dating Josh but the shadows seem to like playing games and he could be in their sights.

So Patrick is appealing due to not having shadows round him and with Josh getting more you can see where it might lead. He’s a master at flirting but do his actions ring true or are things not as they seem? With the new group broken it tears the girls apart but true friends are ever close at hand with Lexi and their new friend Kyra. Iris knows there is something different about her with the fact that she seems to emit light so bright it pushes back the shadows. You can tell she wants answers but perhaps isn’t ready to ask the right questions. Kyra has a calming feel about her and Iris knows she can trust her from the first moment they meet. Just happens to be in the class with her new teacher Mr. Delany. Another enigma it seems as he too, sometimes just with a look, can push the shadows back.

The shadows seem to have a game plan and Iris is at the centre of it, she just doesn’t know she’s playing. Strange things are happening around her to those she cares for and she feels helpless to prevent them. You know she suffers from anxiety but don’t know its source at first. Something happened on her 14th birthday and it forever changed her. Its not just darkness in her life she has to cope with but her families too. The more they seem to struggle the bigger the shadows become. Darkness surrounds them and until she finds her inner light she is powerless to stop them down the dark paths they are on – not their choosing but have they been pushed to go a certain way. Manipulation and whispers seem to be a key part to the shadows. Ones you need to stay clear of.

Side characters I liked were Lexi, Kyra and Hanna, Iris’ sister. They seemed to always be able to bring light and happiness back into the room. Kyra seems to be a bit of a ninja in disguise with some skills that come in handy when Iris needs them most. Her other sister was a bit harsh to her regardless of what she had gone through, especially when you know everything. Is it really her though or the shadows whispers causing her to act a certain way? The same goes for others really. Can they find their own way back? Do they even want to?

It’s an interesting supernatural mix with the everyday worries of teenage angst. Who to trust and who to push away? The line is never clear. You need to look deeper to see to someone’s soul to find the real them trying to get out. Family drama, crushes gone wrong, friendships tested and a fight between light and dark, good and evil. Which way will she be pulled and can she find the correct path to go forward? Only time will tell.

4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

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