Monday, July 16, 2012

Heirs of Prophecy Blog Tour: Guest Post & Giveaway

Today I'm thrilled to be kicking off the Heirs of Prophecy blog tour, hosted by Kismet, with a guest post from author Michael Rothman and a fabulous giveaway! First, let me tell you a little bit about Michael's book, Heir of Prophecy, which is also book 1 in the series:

The Riverton family had been enjoying a simple summer vacation when, through a fluke of nature, they found themselves in a strange new land.

The Riverton brothers quickly realize that in this world, they have gained unusual powers. Powers that their parents fear will attract the attention of Azazel himself - the merciless wizard who brutally controls this world.

The two brothers soon learn that an ancient prophecy has finally been initiated by their arrival in Trimoria. As the heirs of this prophecy, they are destined to lead the armies of men, dwarves, elves, and even a misfit ogre against the prophesied demon horde.

Only one thing stands in their way.

The evil wizard who has learned of their presence, and has sent assassins to wipe them from existence.

Purchase from: Goodreads | Amazon | IndieBound | B&N
View the book trailer HERE


Heroes vs Villains- Which one is more fun to write and why?

What can I say, I am partial to villains in a story, but I think being a villain is oftentimes a misunderstood thing. 

For instance, if I told you that a man came out of nowhere and violently attacked somebody right in front of you, immediately ran away – leaving that person lying on the ground injured or possibly worse. That person might be thought of as a villain, right?

What if I told you that this person who attacked had learned his victim had threatened his family and was planning on killing them, so when he attacked the victim, he was truly just trying to protect his family.  So now the label of villain can be a bit harder to place on him, right? Maybe the victim was the real villain?

What if I told you that this person who attacked the stranger had gained information that was wrong, and the victim was really completely innocent? Well, the poor victim is clearly not a villain, but the attacker “thought” he was doing a good thing. The label of villain becomes kind of muddy.

Sometimes being a villain is a matter of perspective. Most good villains do not believe they are doing evil, even though most others might believe that they are.

In the stories I have written, of course we have both people we might label as “good” and others as “bad”. As an author, the challenge is to keep the character’s motivation distinct and believable from the perspective of the character. 

I’ve found that I enjoy writing the villain roles because at the end of each novel, I lead you down a path that oftentimes makes you question the opinions that you had formed of some of the characters. Somewhat like my prior example of the person attacking a stranger, with my villain in HEIRS OF PROPHECY, Azazel – you certainly are hit in the face with the prologue and can immediately form an opinion of what he is like. A deliciously unpleasant character with unknown motivations, and someone that others cower in fear from. By the end of the story, you might find yourself wondering a bit more about that character, and you definitely realize that not all things are ever as they seem.

I suppose that is what I enjoy about writing. It allows you to reel out a storyline that someone follows, and if you do things correctly, you allow for the reader to immerse themselves in the myriad of ups and downs that are wholly unexpected and provide for the entertainment that readers oftentimes clamor for.


Book II in the Prophecies series

The TOOLS OF PROPHECY is the second volume in an epic saga which describes a prophecy that has placed the Riverton brothers in the lead roles of a struggle to save their world from being overrun by unspeakable horrors. This destiny requires that they face off with the demons that nearly destroyed their world over five centuries ago.

In the first book, the population of wizards had been practically eradicated by the former tyrant. The Rivertons are now charged with creating an Academy of Magic, recruiting qualified students, and furthering their own training with secrets that have long been held by the reclusive elves.

Despite their youth, a mysterious spirit has engaged them in an epic struggle to gain mastery of their newfound skills, help raise and train two armies, and stay alive long enough for their final showdown with destiny.

The only things that stand in their way are the assassins hired to destroy them and the Demon Lord’s minion who holds a personal grudge and intends to witness the young boys’ deaths.

About the Author Website  | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook

I am an Army brat and the first person in my family to be born in the United States. This heavily influenced my youth by instilling a love of reading and a burning curiosity about the world and all of the things within it. As an adult, my love of travel allowed me to explore many unimaginable locations. I participated in many adventures and documented them in what will be a series of books, the first of which you have just read.Some might put these books in the Fantasy genre, and I never had issues with this label. After all, the adventures were, without any doubt in my mind, fantastic. I simply quibble with the label of "Fiction" that some might put on these tales. These tales should be viewed as historical records, more along the lines of a documentary.I've learned one thing over the years. Magic is real. Keep exploring, and you too will find your magic.- Mike Rothman

The Giveaway:

Through out the duration of the Heirs of Prophecy blog tour, Michael is giving away 1 Kindle to one lucky blog tour follower! This giveaway is open to residents of the US & Canada only. To enter, please fill out the form below (which will be also be featured on each of the participating blogs).

a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Be sure to follow the rest of the tour via Kismet's Heirs of Prophecy Tour Page.

Don't miss my reviews for Heirs of Prophecy and it's sequel, Tools of Prophecy here.

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: Author Interview w/ Derek the Ghost from the Scary School Series

Happy Middle Grade Monday! Today I'm thrilled to have Derek the Ghost from Scary School on Mundie Kids to talk about his first two books in his series, Scary School

Hi Derek! Thank you for stopping by Mundie Kids today. How would you describe your Scary School series in 5 words or less?

Hilarious, spooky, super-fun, wacky, book series all kids should read.  I may have to check Webster's on that last word.

Being a student at Scary School, you have a variety of interesting characters who attend there with you. Which of those characters do you enjoy hanging out with the most?

As the reader finds out, I'm actually an 11-year-old ghost who haunts Scary School and writes about all the terrible, wonderful, hilarious things that go on there, so I get to hang out with all the students. My favorite student to hang out with would have to be Petunia, whose half-flower half-girl and is completely purple from head to foot. She's the only student at Scary School who reads the Scary School series, so I think she's the coolest by far. She also loves to read just as much as I love to write. Since I'm a ghost, none of the bees that fly around her hair can sting me, so I'm also one of the only kids who can hang out with her. 

 Author Derek, what's one of the things you and Derek the Ghost have in common?

Derek the Ghost is basically an 11-year-old dead version of me, so we should have pretty much everything in common. What's more interesting is what we don't have in common. One of the big differences is I have mass and Derek the Ghost does not. Derek the Ghost is invisible most of the time, whereas I've never even been able win a game of hide-and-seek. Also I can interact with objects, while Derek the Ghost just passes through all matter.

 What was one of your favorite scenes or chapters to write?

My favorite chapter to write in the first book was probably Chapter 6 - Dr. Dragonbreath's Rules, which is also the scariest chapter in the book. It starts off very ominously: At 8:00 am on the first day of school, there were thirty kids in Dr. Dragonbreath's class. At 8:12 am on the first day, there were only two kids in Dr. Dragonbreath's class. After that, it was a lot of fun playing with that tension for the rest of chapter and keeping the reader on the edge of their seat.  

Most of the other chapters are much funnier than they are scary. In fact, Scary School just won the award as the "Funniest Middle-Grade Book of 2011" from Children's Literature Network, so you know there will be a lot of laughs. 

Congratulations on that award! Can we except to find more books in this series being released any time soon?

Yes! Scary School #2: Monsters on the March just came out on June 26, 2012 and Book 3 will be coming out June 2013. Hopefully, there will also be a bunch more after that as well. I also have a very funny new book called Principal Mikey that we're currently shopping, plus I'm starting up a couple new projects - one is an older YA book that will be kind of an adventure story through great cinema, and also a new middle-grade series about the wackiest town in the world.

Thank you for stopping by today Derek!

From the Author:
For more information on Scary School and all my other books, I invite everyone to visit - it's a super-fun website! You can play a video game on it, and if you win, you will receive the weirdest trophy ever! Plus you can tour the school, meet the students and faculty, watch some cool videos, and even unlock the "Secret Last Chapter" but you'll only know how to do that after you finish reading Book 1 of Scary School!  

About the Author:

Derek is an eleven-year-old ghost who haunts the classrooms and hallways of Scary School, writing down all the spine-tingling often hilarious things that go on there. Despite his ghostly state, Derek still enjoys reading comic books and hopes to one day become a master ninja. If that doesn’t work out, he will continue to share the fun of this very special, very secret school, so all kids can experience the scariest school on earth. Derek the Ghost communicates through the first-time ghost whisperer Derek Taylor Kent, who is a writer and performer in Los Angeles, California.

About the Books:

Scary School
By: Derek the Ghost
Released on: June 21st, 2011
* browse inside

You think your school's scary?

Get a load of these teachers:
"Ms. Fang," an 850-year-old vampire
"Dr. Dragonbreath," who just might eat you before recess
"Mr. Snakeskin"--science class is so much more fun when it's taught by someone who's half zombie
"Mrs. T"--break the rules and spend your detention with a hungry "Tyrannosaurus rex"
Gargoyles, goblins, and Frankenstein's monster on the loose
The world's most frighteningly delicious school lunch
The narrator's an eleven-year-old ghost
Join Charles "New Kid" Nukid as he makes some very Scary friends--including Petunia, Johnny, and Peter the Wolf--and figures out that Scary School can be just as funny as it is spooky - quoted from Goodreads

Scary School: Monsters on the March
By: Derek the Ghost
Released on: June 26th, 2012
As winners of last year's Ghoul Games, the students of Scary School are off to Monster Forest. School may be scary, but the forest has a few frights of its own, including:

Bearodactyls—so terrifying we can't even show you pictures of them
Princess Zogette, the Monster King's toad-faced daughter, who falls for Charles Nukid . . . hard
Captain Pigbeard, fearsome leader of the Monster-Pirates and Princess Zogette's fiancÉ (well, former fiancÉ, thanks to Charles)
And when Zogette follows Charles to Scary School, the Monster King and Captain Pigbeard raise their armies and chase after her. But the monsters have no idea who—or what—they're dealing with.

In this clever, funny sequel to the frighteningly hilarious Scary School, Charles, Penny Possum, Dr. Dragonbreath, and all the students and teachers prove that scary monsters are no match for Scary School! - quoted from Goodreads

You can learn more about this series and find out which of your favorite book stores has these books available by visiting Harper Collins Children's publishing site here.

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday is a weekly feature started by MG author Shannon Messenger and is a weekly post featuring an upcoming MG release, a MG Author Interview or a MG review. You can find out more about this series posts, and find links to author authors and bloggers who are taking part in this feature here. You can also my Must Have Middle Grade Reads feature on Mundie Moms
I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

Good children's literature appeals not only to
the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child.
~ Anonymous ~