EOLYN Book Blast and Giveaway

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Today’s the day! Eolyn, Book One of The Silver Web trilogy, is now available on Kindle. If you haven’t already, you can purchase your copy here.

We’re celebrating the release of Eolyn with a book blast and giveaway. To enter for a chance to win a $15 Amazon gift certificate, visit any (or all!) of the sites below. Many thanks to Goddess Fish Promotions for organizing this event.

Participating web sites in Eolyn’s 2016 Book Blast and Amazon Gift Card Giveaway:

1: The Avid Reader
2: Stormy Nights Reviewing & Bloggin’
3: 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy Too!
4: A to Z Reviews
5: Around the World in Books
6: Author C.A.Milson
7: BooksChatter
8: Cover2Cover
9: Deal Sharing Aunt
10: Hope. Dreams. Life… Lovel
11: Lilly’s Book World
12: Stormy Vixen Book Reviews
13: Mama Reads Hazel Sleeps
14: Natural bri
15: Nightstalker and Nightshades
16: Queen of All She Reads
17: Readeropolis
18: Robyn Bachar: Paranormal and Sci Fi Romance Author
19: Romance That’s ‘Out Of This World’
20: Room With Books
21: Sapphyria’s Book Reviews
22: Sharing Links and Wisdom
23: StarAngels Reviews
24: The Snarkology
25: Tina Donahue Books – Heat with Heart
26: Two Ends of the Pen
27: Wake Up Your Wild Side
28: Welcome to My World of Dreams
29: Harlie’s Books
30: BookSkater

About Eolyn

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Cover art and design by Thomas Vandenberg

In a land ravaged by civil war, the Mage King Kedehen initiates a ruthless purge of the magas. Eolyn, last daughter of the magas and sole heiress to their forbidden craft, seeks refuge in the vast and impenetrable South Woods. When she meets the mysterious Akmael, heir to the throne of this violent realm, she embarks on a path of hope, seduction, betrayal, and war. Desire draws Eolyn toward Akmael’s dark embrace, but fate binds her to Corey of East Selen, a cunning mage whose ambition challenges the limits of love and loyalty.

Can she trust either man?

Hunted in a realm of powerful wizards and brutal deceptions, Eolyn must find her own path to freedom or she will burn on the pyre.

Join the adventure! Purchase your copy today. 

Kirkus Reviews EOLYN

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A peak at the forests of Talamanca that inspired the South Woods.

Good news came in late last week when Kirkus released its review of the second edition of EolynThe review credited Eolyn with a “dreamlike, fairy-tale ambiance,” “immersive political machinations,” and “grand battles”. Interestingly, they weren’t too happy with the transition between these elements, but that’s okay. Overall, the story got a stamp of approval thanks to its “strong heroine” and “weighty themes.” I was pretty stoked. Read the entire review on Kirkus if you’d like to know more.

This is Eolyn’s second proper editorial review, the other having come from Publishers Weekly, back when we released the first edition in 2011. Here’s part of what they said:

“Though Eolyn becomes the hope of a rebellion, she never has to carry the whole weight of the story; Akmael, the ‘witch’ Ghemena, and other characters develop many intriguing facets. Gastreich allows her heroes to have flaws – including moments of cowardice – and some victories bring new sorrows. Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes will satisfy fans of traditional epic fantasy, with a romantic thread.”

I thought it interesting that while both reviewers recognized certain hallmarks of the story – namely, political machinations and grand battle scenes – Publishers Weekly seemed pretty psyched about those aspects of the novel, while Kirkus not so much.

It’s certainly true that the first book of The Silver Web undergoes a change in tone midway through, when Eolyn abandons the South Woods and returns to her people. The South Woods is intended to be a place of childhood fantasy, magic, and fairy tales. As Eolyn grows up and moves into the larger world, part of that magic is inevitably left behind, even eroded under a cruder reality of power games, betrayal, and intrigue. This transition was deliberate on my part; whether or not I pulled it off well will, of course, be the decision of every reader.

I do believe there’s a part of childhood magic that stays alive in our hearts, no matter how far we stray from the fantasies of our youth. Throughout The Silver Web trilogy, the South Woods symbolizes this magic. No matter how far Eolyn and her cohorts stray from the forest, it remains an enduring foundation of love and friendship, a refuge to go back to when the burdens of the world become to great.

That at least one reviewer regretted Eolyn leaving the South Woods behind is, in my mind, a reflection of the very powerful role the forest has in this story, almost as a character in its own right. I count that as a success, even if it occasionally causes some complaint.

Of course, the final verdict on this and other aspects of the novel will soon be in the hands of all readers, when the second edition is released this Thursday, March 31st. Interested in drawing your own conclusions about Eolyn’s “strong female protagonist” and “weighty themes”? Awesome! Eolyn is available for pre-order now. I look forward to hearing what you think!

I’m So Excited!

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OMG – I can’t believe it! We’re just one week away from the release of the second edition of Eolyn on Kindle. I’ve been working so hard for so long toward this goal, it’s hard to believe it’s actually happening. Nerve-wracking, too.

Despite the excellent track record of this novel (strong editorial reviews, enthusiastic readers), I’m still anxious about how it will be received the second time around. What if new readers don’t appear? What if my current readers don’t like the changes I’ve made? What if there are a million typos that somehow got missed during editing, proof-reading, and spell-checking? What if? What if? What if…?

Goodness. The anxiety of an author is never-ending.

It’s moments like this that I go back to a piece of advice given to me by a woman shaman, years ago when I started my first baby steps down the long winding road of publication:

Trust in the fate of your story. 

On March 31st, Eolyn takes to the sea once more, after having been in harbor for several months. She’s had her hull repainted (thank you, Thomas Vandenberg!) and her interior redone; useless ballast thrown overboard and more modern equipment added. New sails hang from her shining masts. She’s swifter, sleeker, ready (I hope!) to challenge the storms ahead.

And she’s no longer alone. Two more ships that make up her small fleet will soon follow.

Eolyn‘s second debut will be celebrated with a book blast organized by Goddess Fish Tours. A full list of participating blogs is available on the Goddess Fish Tours web site. Visit any of these blogs on March 31st, and you can enter a giveaway for a $15 Amazon gift certificate! In addition, tour hosts can participate in a random giveaway of an additional $10 Amazon gift certificate. Interested in hosting? Great! There’s still time to sign up.

To all of you who have supported me in this journey: Thank you! I hope you will find it’s been worth the wait. Stay tuned over the next several weeks. We are in for some exciting times as we celebrate the second edition of Eolyn. There’ll be blog tours, giveaways, and more surprises along the way. Enjoy the magic!

Anxious to secure your own copy of Eolyn? You can pre-order today!

Art as Social Change

Missed my regular post last week, but I’m going to make it up to you today with this little gem from Bioneers. It’s a video of Climbing PoeTree at the Bioneers event Art as Social Change.  I found their performance deeply moving; I hope you do, too.

I’d call Alixa Garcia and Naima Penniman modern magas, and I think they are, but I also feel the magic of Galia in their voices. The Galian wizards are spoken of in books one and two of The Silver Web, but readers don’t actually get to meet them until the last installment of the trilogy, Daughter of Aithne. Theirs is a vibrant magic of fire, earth, and sea. I get the feeling that Garcia and Penniman draw their inspiration from the same sources. Enjoy.

Now Scheduling Book Blast and Virtual Tour for EOLYN, Book One of THE SILVER WEB

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Goddess Fish Promotions is handling the book blast and virtual book tour for the release of Eolyn, Book One of The Silver Web trilogy. The Book Blast is scheduled for March 31, celebrating the release of Eolyn on Kindle. The Virtual Tour will run April 18 through May 6, coinciding with the release of the print edition in early May.

Both tours will include a random drawing for a $15 gift certificate from Amazon. In addition, hosts will be eligible to participate in a random drawing for a $10 Amazon gift certificate.

Interested in being a host? Fantastic!! Please visit the Goddess Fish Promotions web site to sign up and find out more. The Book Blast will consist of a single day of promotional posts across the internet. The Virtual Tour will include guest posts and interviews, according to the preference of each blog host. I’d love to stop by your site for a visit, so don’t be shy about signing up!

Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below.

About EOLYN, Book One of THE SILVER WEB 

In a land ravaged by civil war, the Mage King Kedehen initiates a ruthless purge of the magas. Eolyn, last daughter of the magas and sole heiress to their forbidden craft, seeks refuge in the vast and impenetrable South Woods. When she meets the mysterious Akmael, heir to the throne of this violent realm, she embarks on a path of hope, seduction, betrayal, and war. Desire draws Eolyn toward Akmael’s dark embrace, but fate binds her to Corey of East Selen, a cunning mage whose ambition challenges the limits of love and loyalty.

Can she trust either man?

Hunted in a realm of powerful wizards and brutal deceptions, Eolyn must find her own path to freedom or she will burn on the pyre.

Spring is Coming

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Not so spectacular yet, but come back in a week and these daffodils will be in full bloom. Winter is foiled, once again.

Yesterday, during a lengthy walk along Tomahawk Creek, I came across these daffodils, among the first green buds to emerge this spring. The season is changing; we all can feel it, even the plants. Especially the plants. Spring is coming.

I’m celebrating this year’s spring in a special way, with the release of the second edition of EolynThis is deliberate timing, symbolic  in that it has to do with my protagonist’s name.

There are two stories about the origin of Eolyn’s name. One is the story of how I, the author, named her. The other is the story of how Eolyn’s mother, the Maga Warrior Kaie, brought a child into the world during the worst of times.

Friends and followers are probably aware by now that I named my protagonist after Eowyn, the shield maiden of Tolkien’s classic work, The Lord of the Rings. But The Lord of the Rings doesn’t exist in Eolyn’s world, so Kaie’s inspiration for naming her daughter had to come from somewhere else.

Kaie named her daughter after Eostar, the holiday that marks the start of spring. This was a deliberate and meaningful choice. Eolyn was born during one of the darkest periods of her people’s history. A long and difficult internal war had left the kingdom in near-ruin. The purges were gaining momentum, and as the Mage King exacted vengeance on his enemies, no maga was safe from the pyre.

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Now available for pre-order on Kindle.

Soon all women practitioners would be dead or in exile. Kaie saw what was coming. She knew the glorious tradition of her sisters in magic would soon meet a brutal and bloody end. She knew there might be no one left to teach her daughter the ways of women’s magic.

Still, even though the world as she knew it was falling apart, Kaie saw hope in her daughter. The promise of a new spring, the reflection of life’s indomitable spirit, even in the face of utter destruction. The stubborn emergence of daffodils, time and again, over a barren winter landscape.

“Your name is Eolyn,” Kaie said, the first time she held her baby daughter in her arms. Because spring is coming.

Was Kaie’s hope well-placed? In just under thirty days, you’ll have the chance to find out for yourself.