Last Outsider Cookie + Giveaway

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This is the last Outsider cookie before it’s out and completely available to the masses (Not yet! You say. We’ve been on a cookie less diet for more than a month! How can you be so cruel!) Unless you’ve already pre-ordered it then… *thumbs up*

Not to worry I haven’t cut you off completely and won’t leave you guys to survive of the crumbs of this last Songhay-filled cookie (like chocolate chips but better 😉 ). I’m hosting a giveaway!

To enter is pretty simple, from now until the Twenty-third either leave a comment telling everyone your favorite dystopia is and why. Once you’ve entered one lucky winner shall receive books, 1, 2, and 3 of the Outsider Chronicles. 🙂

For now, enjoy some cookies!

Itadakimasu!

The image of a familiar dream was just beginning to flicker into view when she heard the soft tinkle of glass hitting glass and felt a cold shadow press against her body.

Five heartbeats passed between the time it took her to sweep his feet out from underneath him, grapple him to the ground and press a knife to his throat. She opened her eyes.

“Songhay.”

He swallowed delicately.

“I thought you were asleep,” he finally managed to say.

“I was.” But her time in the Box had turned her into a very light sleeper. “What are you doing here?”

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Interview Time! Character interview with Jools Clayworth of The Sanctum Trilogy by Madhuri Blaylock

With the new book in The Sanctum trilogy out right now (a totally awesome book by the way, you should go check it out). I decided to do something different this time– or at least different for this blog– and host a character interview with one Jools Clayworth, Class A Warrior and Acting Head of The New York Academy. Also one of my favorite characters because she’d just awesome like that. 😀

Full name: Jools Gabrielle Clayworth

Age: 18

Occupation: Class A Warrior for The Sanctum, Acting Head of The New York Academy

KNR: Tell us a little bit about what happens in The Boy?

I feel like it’s a treatise of sorts on dealing with loss, the devastating effects loss can have on you and how everyone handles loss differently.

I’m sure Wyatt would say it’s all about him becoming more perfect than he already was, but for me, THE BOY is about coping and overcoming and loving and ultimately, growth. On so many levels, from the most basic, where you see me step into Sam’s shoes and start leading our Academy to the more subtle, like when Ryker forgives Dev (which I’m not supposed to know, but I’m totally nosey and manage to get all sorts of information out of Madhuri) (she likes me best, you know).

KNR: What is the Sanctum? What are Magicals?

Currently, The Sanctum is going to mean different things to different people, depending on their agenda. Ideally, The Sanctum was created by the gods to oversee Magicals and keep humans in the dark about the supernatural lives existing right under their noses, on their blocks and sometimes in their very own homes.

Ask a Breslin and they’ll tell you The Sanctum is a means to achieving dominance over all of us, warriors and Magicals alike. Ask Carter Breslin and he’ll tell you The Sanctum is his premier torture chamber in the basement of The London Academy.

Ask Wyatt and he’ll tell you The Sanctum is an upstanding and vital organization meting out justice for all Magical-kind. Ask Ryker and he’ll tell you The Sanctum is nothing but a bunch of blood-thirsty, murderous fools.

Personally, The Sanctum represents what we are and how we should always strive to improve. Yes, we protect Magicals and humans, but we can do a better job of it, we can be more just and less brutal. We are the fine line between Magical and humankind and maintaining that balance in an honorable manner should be our primary goal, as the gods intended when they created us.

What was your other question? Oh yeah, what are Magicals? Basically, that’s just Sanctum lingo, a catch-all term we use for any non-human being, from demons, vampires and werewolves to faeries, trolls, imps and the like.

KNR: You’ve recently become Acting Head of the New York Academy, can you tell us a bit about what a day as Acting Head is like?

Hell mixed in with a lot of ass-kissing, cajoling and threats. Ha! I kid, but not really.

It’s tough.

I’m young and I’m not Wyatt. And everyone expected that next to the words “Head of The New York Academy” would be the name Wyatt Clayworth. So I’ve spent a lot of time having to prove myself to our allies. And as much as I hate to admit it, having Ryker around has helped tremendously. He seems to iron out all of my wrinkles, stepping in whenever I get testy, saying just the right thing and putting everyone’s minds at ease.

I’m working on being better at that aspect of the job, but for him, it just comes naturally.

Right now, I’m so caught up in creating this coalition to take on the Breslins, that the other aspects of running The Academy are still being handled by my dad. Of course, Sam has rejoined us, so I imagine she will help Dad, but right now, he’s been handling the day-to-day with the Magicals. He’s my right hand and I love him.

KNR: What do you think people would be most surprised to learn about you?

I love a good rom-com. And I had a fling with a werewolf.

KNR: List five things you can’t live without.

My crossbow, a good pair of jeans, scotch, mint ChapStick…and Ryker

But if you tell him he made my list, I swear to the gods, I will kill you.

KNR: If you weren’t a part of the Sanctum what do you think you would be doing?

Practicing Shindo, no doubt. Dark magic, black arts. Making The Sanctum crazy because if I’m not in The Sanctum, I’m pretty positive I’m doing something to make them chase me around constantly, so I can fight them all the time.

It’s in my blood. I’ve got to fight. I can’t really imagine a life where I don’t have a blade around my hips and that crossbow on my back, you know?

Did you think I was going to say something like own a brownstone in Brooklyn with Ryker and have a bunch of babies?

Ha! Not likely.

KNR: What do you feel is your best characteristic? Your worst one?

Best characteristic, easily my killer instinct. I’m one of the best warriors in The Sanctum, if not the best now that Wyatt is gone and Ryker never liked being a warrior anyway.

My worst? You should have asked Wyatt since he’ll have a nice, long list for you of all my annoying qualities. Personally, I think I’m freaking awesome, but if I have to pick something, probably those rare moments when my bratty side rears its head.

KNR: Lastly, can you give us all a tiny hint at what’s going to happen in Book III?

No way.

Madhuri will kill me.

 

[Le sigh, I had to make an attempt :)]

Aside

Review of The Boy by Madhuri Blaylock

Dun dun dun! The Boy, book II in The Sanctum trilogy by Madhuri Blaylock’s is finally out (by the way did you know you can download the first book, The Girl for free on Amazon now? You didn’t? Well, go on. I’ll wait).

Since The Boy was so awesome (and sexy! :3) I’ll leave a review for your enjoyment, and be on the look out for a character interview with Jools Clayworth (so you better start reading The Sanctum right now and earn your hipster bragging rights).

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Review

I enjoyed the first book in The Sanctum trilogy but I enjoyed the second one even more. The Boy by Madhuri Blaylock starts off pretty much where The Girl left off. Wyatt is dying from a mortal wound inflicted by Max Breslin and Dev has brought him to the Ramyan hoping he can be saved.

Back in the Sanctum world Jools is now acting head of the New York branch, Darby’s her usual Southern Vampire self, the Breslins are a-plotting and a-scheming, and someone is impersonating Ryker, killing Magicals left and right.

The action never stops as the plot and tension builds leaving the reader holding their breath during each chapter.

The Boy is actually one of the few series where I find myself enjoying all the characters and even those I might have been cold toward in the previous book I’m starting to warm up to.

The writing’s excellent and while The Boy doesn’t end with a cliffhanger this time I can hardly wait for book three.

I loved it. Madly.

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Book Giveaway!

 

In a couple of days on Twitter (April 30th to be exact) I will be revealing the cover of Madhuri Blaylock’s The Boy (Book 2 of The Sanctum Trilogy) in all it’s awesomeness. But while you wait :p you can join the raffle for a chance to win one of five e-copies of The Girl AND The Boy and earn hipster bragging rights while are you’re friends will be left just wishing they were as cool as you.

So join The Sanctum and follow me @KNRwrites to get a peek of book 2:The Boy

 

#Areyouinthesanctum?

 

In THE GIRL, Madhuri Blaylock introduced readers to the world of The Sanctum, one corrupted by greed and savagery and hellbent on achieving a single goal: destroying the prophesied hybrid. When one of its most celebrated warriors questioned his allegiances, age-old secrets were unveiled and violence erupted. The journey becomes more perilous and intense as the trilogy surges forward with

 

THE BOY

 

Can you cross the plains of death, collect every piece of your soul and make it back to the land of the living?

 

And if you complete the journey, will your loved ones welcome your return?

 

The Ramyan have been answering such questions since the creation of The Sanctum. A mysterious sect of Magicals, haunting the blank spaces of time and memory, they serve no one but themselves and their higher purpose. They exist on a plane removed from earthly matters, shifting easily between the living and the dead, moving in time to the beat of their own drummer.

 

At least they did. Dev and Wyatt change all of that when the prophesied hybrid lands on the steps of Rinshun Palace, seeking help for the wounded Class A Warrior. That decision alters lives and sets old agendas back on course. But at what cost to Dev and Wyatt? And does that really even matter?

Interview Time! Patrick Wong, author of Balancer++

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I love when I stumble across a really awesome book (with a really gorgeous cover btw), that I want to push to all my friends (then promis serious bodily harm if they don’t read it :D), but i’ve come to realize I also like learning about the minds who write such really awesome books.

So without further ado:

 

>>How would you describe Balancer to those who haven’t read it yet? 

It’s a Coming of Age Paranormal story about a suburban teen who must learn the consequences of the unusual gift she has been given.  Every action has a reaction. Every life saved is a life lost.

>>How did the idea for Balancer come about? 

Past history is full of cultures that have practiced the concept of sacrificing one living thing for another.  What if that practice was a legitimate way to heal someone? 

That’s the base mythology behind Balancer…I expanded on that idea to see how an ordinary teen might react in the modern world.

>>Any plans for a sequel?

Absolutely – Book 2 of The Final Deity is in heavy-draft right now…I have over 45 chapters completed.  It’s coming soon!

 [Yay!!!]

>>When did you first realize that writing was something you wanted to do?

I’m a full-time software developer, so there’s definitely more left-brain in me than right-brain. And I didn’t plan on writing a novel, but the Balancer story kept playing in my head about 2 years ago and I couldn’t stop it.  So I started writing at night. 

I love movies, and I began developing Balancer as if it were a screen-play rather than a novel.  So if Balancer feels more like a Movie, that’s why…Balancer should’ve been a movie before it became a book.

>>Who are some of your writerly crushes?

I grew-up with JRR Tolkein, and Stephen King. 

When my kids were younger, we went through a major Harry Potter phase and read JK Rowling in the evenings. (actually, we’re still in that Harry Potter phase…can’t wait for the Universal Studio expansion to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter)

Most recently, my daughter suggested the Legend series from Marie Lu, and Maze Runner from James Dashner.  Both good suggestions.

>>What’s you’re usual writer’s schedule like? Are you an Outliner, or do you let the characters lead you where they may? 

Most of my writing happens between 11pm-1am.  

And I’m definitely an Outliner – probably due to my computer background – I like to have some structure to work against.

>>Movie time! Who would you want cast for Balancer movie?

Nicole – I’m a believer in casting unknowns into lead roles  (like Daniel Radcliffe for Harry Potter).  So Nicole would go to an undiscovered talent. (My daughter has volunteered!)

 

But Nicole would be surrounded by established stars…

Amy Madigan – Emma Fanning or Chloe Moretz
Dr Lucy Aaronson (Nicole’s mom) – Helen Hunt
James Aaronson (Nicole’s dad) – Kevin Costner
Professor Jim Barnard – David Tennant (the 10th Doctor Who)
Professor Anthony DuBois – Harrison Ford? Sean Connery?
Ben Owens – Nolan Gould (Modern Family)
Senator Campbell Jennings – John Goodman
Drake Jennings – younger Alex Pettyfyr 
 
Don’t forget to check out Balancer by Partick Wong!