Tours

Blog Tour: Ulrik by Wendy L. Anderson @RRBookTours1 #RRBookTours #Ulrik

Welcome to the book tour for Wendy L. Anderson’s latest novel, Ulrik! We have an exclusive excerpt for you and a chance to win a digital copy of the book!

Ulrik by Wendy L. Anderson
Genre: Fantasy/ Time-Travel Romance
Publication Date: February 24th, 2021
Publisher: Infinity Publishing

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Drowning when his ship went down in a vicious storm, Ulrik the Viking thought it was the end. Instead, he awakens on a new and brutal Earth. Believing he was banished to this strange land by the gods as punishment, he faces the mountainous wilderness alone.

Tessa, a lonely and broken-hearted woman, dies in her sleep on her 85th birthday. She too awakens surrounded by the frightful and the unknown. Both are mysteriously thrown into new bodies facing new lives, new hopes, new dangers, and new desires.

Cast through time and other dimensions, fate has given Ulrik and Tessa a second chance at life and love. They must survive on a ruthless new world against a brutal warrior race determined to use them to conquer extinction and enter into the age of metal.  All that stands against them is ULRIK!

Ulrik sat on the bank of a cool stream that ran down the mountain where he usually hunted. He watched as the water trickled over smooth rocks and sprayed the moss-lined bank. Down the mountainside, the stream narrowed and was eventually joined by another river, widening to become a rushing, roaring froth of cold, crystal blue water flowing swiftly over rapids. His gaze followed the stream as it meandered off into the distance and gently widened into a deep slow-moving river. He listened to the different sounds the water made. The roar, as it cascaded down the waterfall further uphill, to the trickle of the stream over moss-covered rocks, and finally the faint pounding of distant rapids. The forest was raucous with sound and full of breath-taking sights.

The forest’s majesty was lost on him today. Ulrik was bored. He reached for a stone and tossed it into the stream then stood, grabbed his spear, and walked up the hill toward the lake at the bottom of the waterfall. He decided he had better find something for his supper and thought fish sounded as good as anything else.

Memories swamped him as he recalled all the times he had fished with his brothers as a young man. Those thoughts led him to contemplate, for the hundred thousandth time, his current solitary situation. By his count, it had been around two years that he lived alone in these mountains in this strange place. Being banished by the Gods he knew, enraged him and his loneliness made him feel like less of a man. Two years without speaking to another soul or without seeing another human’s face made him angry. He cursed, kicking at a stone in his path. The stone shot forward, struck a tree, and fell uselessly to the ground.

“By Odin and all the gods! I wish I had a woman!”

He cursed out loud and continued stomping up the path until he came to his usual fishing spot at the lakeside. He hefted his spear and waded into the lake, not even bothering to remove his boots.

The warm spring wind blew across his face. As he had a hundred times before, Ulrik stood still, slowed his breathing, and searched the deep emerald depths for the flicker of a silvery tail. Quick as lightning he stabbed down and, wrenching his arm back, pulled an impaled fish out of the water. He grasped the wriggling tail, pulled it from the spear blade, and threw it to the bank of the lake where it flopped, struggling to breathe as its life leached away.

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Hello, I’m Wendy L. Anderson. I am a fantasy author! I will also reveal that my fantasy writing has a bit of romance thrown in. There is action, adventure, magic, danger, and intrigue in all of my books.

My first foray into the world of writing was my five book Kingdom of Jior epic fantasy series. I have created an entire world full of fantastic and noble beings and it all begins with book one Of Demon Kind. Most of my reviewers have found this book series surprises them with its uniqueness.

One thing I love about writing fantasy is world creating. Would it be bad of me to admit that I love to escape into the worlds I make up rather than face the one I’m in?

I am a pantser which means I write by the seat of my pants and do not use a formal outline, process, or formula to write. I just sit down and start typing an idea I have or a scene that pops into my head and I just go from there. I also use many themes in my writing because they are my favorite things and places and they just happen. Being born in Colorado, it should not come as a surprise, that I love the mountains. I also love winter, forests, waterfalls, hot springs, crystals and jewels, prisms, and anything medieval. Knights, chivalry, swords, and honorable quests inspire me to write these fantasy adventures. Those favorites appear often in many of my stories, but I am always pushing the boundaries and I do try to expand my writing horizons.

In addition to my five book fantasy series, I have written a stand-alone Viking story titled, A Cut Twice as Deep. This is a beautiful tale I saw in a dream and is about twin sisters who only have each other in a world where women are not particularly valued. They have grown up serving their tyrant of a father when suddenly they find out that they have been given in marriage to the highest bidders. Forced to separate and travel great distances they are parted so that their father may increase his wealth and power. This story has everything danger, intrigue, and romance, and did I mention Vikings? I test the waters of historical fiction with my special brand of fantasy thrown in. A Cut Twice as Deep is an emotional tale of sisterly bonds and finding love in a land where blood and ice reign.

I once read, and perhaps you have heard the saying, that a true writer needs to write it is in their nature just like a painter needs to paint or a sculptor needs to sculpt. That is me. When it comes to writing, I live by Winston Churchill’s wise words, “Never, never, never, never give up.”

 I hope you have enjoyed this ramble. You can learn more about my books and my writing on my website http://www.wendylanderson.com. Be sure to subscribe and feel free to contact me about anything you’d like to know about me and my fantasy writing.

Until then… Enjoy the fantasy!

Wendy L. Anderson is a Colorado native and mother of two boys. She has an English Degree from Regis University and writes books, short stories and poetry. Wendy is a devout reader of the classics, fantasy, sci-fi and historical fiction. She has decided it is time to write down the fantasies from her own mind. Writing about everything from fantastical worlds to the stuff of her dreams she takes her stories along interesting paths while portraying characters and worlds she sees in her mind’s eye. Her goal is to deviate from common themes, write in original directions and transport her reader to the worlds of her creation.

March 15th
Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com
Books Rambling and Tea (Guest Post) https://booksramblingsandtea.com/
Phantom of the Library (Review) https://phantomofthelibrary.com/

March 16th
Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com
Nesie’s Place (Spotlight) https://nesiesplace.wordpress.com
Bonnie Reads and Writes (Review) https://bonniereadsandwrites.wordpress.com/
Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

March 17th
@brendajeancombs (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/brendajeancombs/
Dark Whimsical Art (Review) https://www.darkwhimsicalart.com/blogs/news
Lunarian Press () https://www.lunarianpress.com/

March 18th
Sophril Reads (Spotlight) https://sophrilreads.wordpress.com
The Faerie Review (Spotlight) http://www.thefaeriereview.com
Book Dragons Not Worms (Review) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1

March 19th
@bookishkelly2020 (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/BookishKelly2020/
Inked & Blonde (Review)  https://inkedandblonde.blogspot.com/
The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Spotlight) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

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Reviews · Tours

Blog Tour: The Littlest Dinosaur by Bryce Raffle and Steven Kothlow @bryceraffle @RRBookTours1 #RRBookTours #TheLittlestDinosaur

Welcome to the tour for the most adorable story, The Littlest Dinosaur by Bryce Raffle and Steven Kothlow, illustrated by Tessa Verplancke! We also have a fantastic giveawayDigital Prize Packs which include the ebook copy of the book, two desktop wallpapers for the computer, two cell phone backdrops, plus three printable activity pages including colouring two book pages and a maze.

The Littlest Dinosaur
by Bryce Raffle and Steven Kothlow
Illustrator: Tessa Verplancke
Genre: Children’s Literature
Publication Date: November 2, 2020

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Ty, The Tyrannosaur just wants to make a new friend.

Sadly, the other dinosaurs are all afraid of his sharp teeth! So Ty must go on an adventure to find a dinosaur brave enough to be friends with a Tyrannosaur.

International Giveaway!!!

To win a digital prize pack which includes the ebook copy of the book, two desktop wallpapers for the computer, two cell phone backdrops, plus three printable activity pages including colouring two book pages and a maze, click the link below to enter!

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I received a copy of this book from the Author and R&R Book Tours, in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Oh my goodness this was such a cute book.

The lesson of this story is you should not judge a person by their appearance.  

This is so important for children to learn and I know a few adults that would benefit from this too 🙂

Essentially this story is about Ty who wants to make friends but when he approaches other dinosaurs they see him and run away.  No one gives him a chance to even talk to them until he finds the Littlest Dinosaur.  The LIttlest Dinosaur and Ty become friends and when the other dinosaurs see them together they realize they might have acted rashly.   I won’t tell you why you have to get the book to see.  

Bryce Raffle was the lead writer for the video game studio Ironclad Games. He also writes stories for young adults and designs book covers.

Steven Kothlow is making his debut as a children’s book writer. He hopes to tell many more stories that help spread a message of diversity and inclusion especially in children’s literature.

Tessa Verplancke is a sound designer by day and an illustrator by night. She lives to tell stories through as many mediums as possible.

March 8th
Reads & Reels (Review) http://readsandreels.com
Didi Oviatt (Review) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com
I Smell Sheep (Review) http://www.ismellsheep.com/
@geauxgetlit (Review) https://www.instagram.com/geauxgetlit/
Lunarian Press (Review) https://www.lunarianpress.com/
@_yay_books (Review) https://www.instagram.com/_yay_books/

March 9th
Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com
@dreaminginpages (Review) https://www.instagram.com/dreaminginpages/
Bonnie Reads and Writes (Review) https://bonniereadsandwrites.wordpress.com
Book Dragons Not Worms (Review) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1
@kathreadsya (Review) https://www.instagram.com/kathreadsya/
Michelle Meng’s Book Blog 4 (Review)  http://michellemengsbookblog4.simplesite.com/
Books Teacup and Reviews (Review) https://booksteacupnreviews.com/

March 10th
B is for Book Review (Spotlight) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com
Jessica Belmont (Spotlight) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/
@jodys_ig (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/jodys_ig/
Books Rambling and Tea (Review) https://booksramblingsandtea.com/
@joanna.zoe (Review) https://www.instagram.com/joanna.zoe/?igshid=1xipr7pa6a9zl
The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com
@brendajeancombs (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/brendajeancombs/

March 11th
The Invisible Moth (Review) https://daleydowning.wordpress.com/
@devoured_pages (Review) https://www.instagram.com/devoured_pages/
Ruby Red Romance Review (Review) https://rubyredromancereview.com/
Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/
@bookishqueendom (Review) https://www.instagram.com/bookishqueendom/

March 12th
Nesie’s Place (Spotlight) https://nesiesplace.wordpress.com
Tsarina Press (Spotlight) https://tsarinapress.com/blog/
Book Review Crew (Review) https://thebookreviewcrew.com/
Dash Fan Book Reviews (Review) https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/
Sophril Reads (Review) https://sophrilreads.wordpress.com
Bookish Laura (Review) http://www.bookishlaura.co.uk/

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New Releases · Promotions · Tours

Blog Tour: A Conventicle of Magpies by L.M.R. Clarke @lmrclarkeauthor @RRBookTours1 @castrumpress #RRBookTours #AConventicleofMagpies #Bloodskills

I am thrilled to share this amazing new book! A Conventicle of Magpies is the first book in the Bloodskills duology, and today we have an exclusive excerpt for you, and a chance to win a signed copy of the book!

A Conventicle of Magpies by L.M.R. Clarke
(Bloodskill Duology #1)
Genre: Gaslamp Fantasy/ Adventure/ Steampunk
Publication Date: January 6th, 2021

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Rook is a thief, and entirely unapologetic about it as she’s determined to do anything to ensure her mother and siblings survive the squalid and dangerous streets of Stamchester.

Rook slips in and out of the homes of the ruling elite of Stamchester, the Avanish,like a shadow taking what she needs without regret.

Why should she? Had the Avanish not stolen her own people, the Saouiasei, from their own homes years before and transported them across the ocean to Stamchester to work as virtual slaves?

And, now the Avanish had no more use for Rook and her people, where they not determined to dispose of them?

The Avanish had already laid waste to a swathe of Saouiasei homes, a region which had become known as ‘The Scar’, in an attempt to drive them out?

However, Rook was not the only person hiding in the shadows. A far more dangerous figure was haunting the filthy streets of Stamchester striking fear into Avanish and Saouiasei alike; Billy Drainer, a serial killer who not only murdered his victims but drained them of every ounce of their precious, life giving blood.

For within blood was a highly sought-after commodity, the ability to enhance a person’s natural abilities through the art of Bloodskill. To be faster and stronger than a normal person was something those with money were willing to pay handsomely for.

‘A Conventicle of Magpies’ is a fast-paced gaslamp fantasy adventure set in a Victorian-inspired world. Perfect for fans of Charlie N. Holmberg’s Spellbreaker and Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell.

Safe and sound in the Magpie’s Nest, Rook divested herself of her corseted dress and heels and returned to the comfort of a shirt and trousers. The young woman fell into an armchair, threw her booted feet onto the battered coffee table, and plucked up a newspaper. Even though she’d been out all day, she hadn’t seen the latest in the Stamchester Review. As she scanned the page, Rook shook her head, and a lock of black hair fell over her face.

YET ANOTHER BLOODLESS CORPSE

At two o’clock this morning, a police constable came upon the scene of yet another gruesome murder. The body, which has not yet been identified, was found on the southbank end of the Buxridge Bridge. Like the other five bodies found in similar circumstances over the last few months, the corpse appeared to be drained of every last ounce of blood. Suspicion for this killing falls once more on the elusive fiend known only as Billy Drainer, although Inspector Kip Kerstammen declined to comment on this observation.

Rook licked her thumb and flicked to the next page. Inches and inches of news stretched through the broadsheet, as always full of sensationalism and very little fact. Only two parties enjoyed Stamchester’s string of murders: so-called Billy Drainer himself, whoever he was, and the newspapers. Both made significant gains from the events. News was always a profitable commodity in Stamchester, but blood was more valuable than gold. Those corpses weren’t bloodless for no reason.

A cough came from the doorway. Rook glanced up from the grim columns. A slim figure stood in the doorway, a tiny girl at the end of her teenage years. Pigeon stood in the low doorframe that led to the main Nest bar and jerked her head. The action sent her mass of dark curls tumbling to one side.

GIVEAWAY!!

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Click the link below for a chance to win a signed edition of A Conventicle of Magpies

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I received a copy of this book from the Author and R&R Book Tours, in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

A Conventicle of Magpies is the first book in the Bloodskill duology by L.M.R. Clarke.

This is a Gaslamp Fantasy story.  Gaslamp fantasy takes the historical elements from Victorian London and has a science twist.  

This story takes place in the town of Stamchester. A generation ago the Avanish have conquered this area and they brought the  Saosuíasei people over to work for them.  Now the government wants to rid itself of the Saosuíasei people. What they have not counted on is the Conventicle of Magpies and the Shadow Jaguars. 

This story was amazing!  Being a lover of steampunk I knew I would love a gaslamp fantasy novel.  And just look at that cover.

Once I got going in this book I found it hard to put down.  I was sucked into this world fully, the storytelling is wonderful and I was able to picture this setting with ease.  I loved Rook and Kestrel’s friendship and all of the mystery surrounding Rook’s family. I can not wait to find out more about all of these characters in book 2.  

Something is mentioned casually towards the end of the book so I am hoping to see an alliance form in the next book!

I’m LMR Clarke, though you can call me Rain, and I’m a writer from Northern Ireland. I’m thirty-something, a parent, and a teacher. I love books and I also draw.

I’m an enby (non-binary) and am still finding my way! My stories are all about identity and acceptance and trying to find your place in the world.

LMR ClarkeTwitter | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

February 1st
Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com
Books Rambling and Tea (Review) https://booksramblingsandtea.com/
Debjani’s Thoughts (Spotlight) https://debjanisthoughts.wordpress.com/
Phantom of the Library (Review) https://phantomofthelibrary.com/
@brendajeancombs (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/brendajeancombs/
The Faerie Review (Spotlight) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

February 2nd
Gwendalyn’s Books (Review) https://gwendalynbooks.blog/
I Smell Sheep (Review) http://www.ismellsheep.com/
Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com
Nesie’s Place (Spotlight) https://nesiesplace.wordpress.com
I’m All About Books (Spotlight) https://imallaboutbooks.com/

February 3rd
Rambling Mads (Review) http://ramblingmads.com
@better_0ff_read (Spotlight w/ Review to follow) https://www.instagram.com/BETTER_0FF_READ/
@joanna.zoe (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/joanna.zoe/?igshid=1xipr7pa6a9zl
@_ebl_inc_ (Review) https://www.instagram.com/_ebl_inc_/The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/the_magic_of_worlds/

February 4th
Book Review Crew (Review) https://bookreviewcrew.blogspot.com
Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/
Sophril Reads (Review) https://sophrilreads.wordpress.com
@dreaminginpages (Review) https://www.instagram.com/dreaminginpages/

February 5th
@ypsylynn (Spotlight w/ Review to Follow) https://www.instagram.com/jypsylynn/
Bonnie Reads & Writes (Review) https://bonniereadsandwrites.wordpress.com
The Invisible Moth (Review) https://daleydowning.wordpress.com
Michelle Meng’s Book Blog 3 (Review) http://michellemengsbookblog3.simplesite.com/
@hoardingbooks.herdingcats (Review)  https://www.instagram.com/hoardingbooks.herdingcats/

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New Releases · Tours

Blog Tour: The Book of Uriel by Elyse Hoffman @Project613Books @RRBookTours1 #RRBookTours #TheBookofUriel

Congratulations to author Elyse Hoffman on the release of her absolutely stunning novel, The Book of Uriel! 

“The Book of Uriel is a heartbreaking blend of historical fiction and Jewish folklore that will enthrall fans of The Book Thief and The World That We Knew.”

Read on for an excerpt and a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card!

The Book of Uriel by Elyse Hoffman
Genre: Historical Fiction/ Jewish Fiction/ Jewish Folklore/ Holocaust Fiction
Expected Publication Date: January 26, 2021
Publisher: Project 613 Publishing

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In the fires of World War II, a child must save his people from darkness…

Ten-year-old Uriel has always been an outcast. Born mute in a Jewish village known for its choir, he escapes into old stories of his people, stories of angels and monsters. But when the fires of the Holocaust consume his village, he learns that the stories he writes in his golden notebook are terrifyingly real.

In the aftermath of the attack, Uriel is taken in by Uwe, a kind-hearted linguist forced to work for the commander of the local Nazi Police, the affably brutal Major Brandt. Uwe wants to keep Uriel safe, but Uriel can’t stay hidden. The angels of his tales have come to him with a dire message: Michael, guardian angel of the Jewish people, is missing. Without their angel, the Jewish people are doomed, and Michael’s angelic brethren cannot search for him in the lands corrupted by Nazi evil.

With the lives of millions at stake, Uriel must find Michael and free him from the clutches of the Angel of Death…even if that means putting Uwe in mortal danger.

Demons Without the Devil: How To Write Demons and Angels From A Jewish Perspective.

To say that Judaism has contradictory opinions regarding demons and angels would be an understatement. From a Christian point of view, telling a story involving angels and demons is made at least somewhat easier by the presence of Lucifer, the fallen angel, an opponent of God. But in Judaism, Satan never fell. The figure of Ha-Satan (literally Hebrew for “the Adversary”) which in Christian tradition became synonymous with evil is, in Jewish myth, little more than a heavenly lawyer who is, at his worst, a pessimist. HaSatan works in the Heavenly Court, and he does not cause sin, not directly at least: in Jewish thought, HaSatan is the equivalent of Mr. Slugworth from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: an employee of the big guy who tempts people to sin in order to test them, but is not actually devilish in nature.

So if you, like me, happen to be a Jew wanting to tell a story about angels and demons, you now face a problem: in Judaism, the devil does not exist. So how are you going to write a demon/angel story without the devil as an antagonist?

Fortunately, while demons are never actually mentioned in the Torah, there is a relatively rich Jewish tradition of demonology. Within the Talmud—the over 1000-page book of Jewish oral law—we are even told that while there is no devil, there is a king of the demons, a creature known as Asmodeus (sometimes also called Ashmedai). Asmodeus, despite his title of Demon King, is not quite a ‘devil’ figure. His first and arguably most villainous appearance in Jewish lore is in the Book of Tobit, where he kills the seven husbands of a woman named Sarah out of jealousy, but was eventually defeated by her eighth husband, Tobias. However, later tales from the Talmud portray the so-called demon king as, at most, obnoxious and even occasionally helpful—-teaching King Solomon humility in the old story of The Beggar King and setting a drunk man on the correct path in the Talmud. Asmodeus, then, is less of a Satan-like figure and is, in fact, surprisingly humanized throughout Jewish lore.

More devilish is his partner—Lilith. Lilith is said to be the first wife of Adam, created like him from the dust of the earth and cast out of Eden after she and her husband had an argument in which she refused to submit to him (the exact nature of this argument varies from tale to tale and often ventures into NSFW territory.)  she fled from the Garden of Eden (or was banished depending on the version.). Lilith is regarded in Jewish lore as the mother of all demons, a woman who slaughters human babies and seduces weak men away from their paternal and marital duties, and alternatively the wife of either Asmodeus or, alternatively, the Angel of Death.

Lilith, having a more fleshed out backstory and being more vicious than Asmodeus, appears in more works than the King of Demons—especially in darker stories, often involving adultery, witchcraft, and a child-murder. Lilith has the potential of being problematic if she is not handled with care; her backstory is laden with misogynistic overtones and undertones, as she is cast from Eden for refusing to ‘submit’ to her husband, turning her into a monster who ‘entraps’ weak but good-hearted men and who kills the descendants of her ex-husband out of pure spite. If reworked, however, Lilith can not only act as a frightening demonic figure but one with a tragic, sympathetic backstory that many feminists have latched onto. It is notable, however, that despite being regarded as a demon queen, the mother of demons, and despite being more wicked than her husband Asmodeus, Lilith is not herself a demon—she is a human woman, the first human woman in fact, and while that fact perhaps doesn’t say great things about Jewish lore’s opinions on women, it does demonstrate that throughout Jewish lore, humans are often portrayed as more evil than any demon.

The final creature in Jewish folklore that comes close to the Christian concept of the “Devil” is not a demon, but an angel, specifically the Archangel of Death, Samael. While some Jewish sources and scholars describe Ha-Satan and Samael as being the same person, many others separate the two. As with most Jewish lore, Samael’s characterization and backstory vary from tale to tale. Some stories describe him as the father of Cain, some post-Christian myths adopt a Luciferian take and say that he was the serpent who tempted Eve to eat of the Forbidden Fruit, and some take that a step further and describe him as a fallen angel who married Lilith.

Generally, however, these are from more Christianized stories and myths, and most folklore merely regards him as a dark angel—still within the Heavenly Court, but not a figure to be trifled with. Several stories even state that Samael, in addition to or even prior to being the Angel of Death, was the Guardian Angel of Esau, the brother of Jacob and traditionally considered the father of the enemies of the Jewish people. This generally puts him into conflict with the Archangel Michael, who in Jewish tradition is the guardian angel of Israel, and many times the two angels will come to blows over their respective nations. In this way, Samael represents not only death, but the specter of anti-Semitism who fights with Michael over the fate of the Jewish people—a tradition I utilized in my upcoming novel, The Book of Uriel.

Samael is certainly a backstory grab-bag of an archangel, and he offers a wide array of potential for any author seeking to write angel/demon stories from a Jewish perspective. If one feels better keeping with a more Luciferian fallen angel perspective, Samael offers the opportunity to write that without mischaracterizing poor Asmodeus. On the other hand, any one of his backstories—father of Cain, Guardian Angel of Esau, loyal servant of God with a nasty job—can potentially offer a sympathetic, interesting, even tragic villain. While most Jewish folklore does not make him a devil, Samael, even when he remains loyal to God, is significantly more dangerous than even the King of Demons.

If all of this seems confusing, you’re not alone! The diversity of the Jewish experience means that these folkloric figures range in character from friendly anti-hero to terrifying villain, from tragic fallen figure to ruthless monster. Their backstories are never consistent, their relationships to one another and other figures good and evil shift depending on the source.

There is no uniform mythology, which can be imposing to a writer. But all these contradictions and shifting backstories can be a blessing: it offers freedom to write what you want without stepping on any toes. Since these demons and angels are never or only briefly mentioned in the Bible, an author can pick whatever backstory suits them, whichever characterization will make their story better, and run with it while being fully backed up by existing lore. If you want a lot of freedom in what you write and how you write it while still having a lot of lore to fall back on, Jewish mythology is a great place to look! And if you want to add a lot of humanity and feature a lot of sympathetic villains in your angel/demon story, Jewish lore has a ton of lore bricks to build with.

If you’re interested in writing angel/demon stories from a Jewish perspective, the best thing to do is read some myths and get inspired! There’s a lot out there! I recommend anything by Howard Schwartz, especially his book Tree of Souls: The Mythology of Judaism to get started! Lilith’s Cave also provides a lot of demonic Jewish lore to look at! The online Jewish Encyclopedia is a bit confusingly written, but pretty comprehensive. Gertrude Landa’s Book of Jewish Fairytales and Legends is free on kindle. Louis Ginsberg’s Complete Legends of the Jews is quite comprehensive and also free on kindle! Those are some bulk resources, but there are a lot of stories out there, and stories from a European Jewish perspective vary a lot from Mizrahi or Sephardic stories. Give them a read, pick whatever speaks to you, and go tell a great story!

GIVEAWAY!!

For a chance to win (International) a $25 Amazon gift card, enter the giveaway HERE!

Elyse Hoffman can write a lot of things, but finds her own story dull and difficult. She has been interested in the Holocaust and Nazi Germany since she was thirteen. Her somewhat morbid fascination is purely intellectual and emotional. She advises you to be careful when signing contracts. You never know where or when you may end up.

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Tours

Blog Tour: The Kompromat Kill by Michael Jenkins @FailsafeQuery @RRBookTours1 #RRBookTours

Welcome to the blog tour for The Kompromat Kill by Michael Jenkins, another riveting spy thriller from The Failsafe Query series!

The Kompromat Kill by Michael Jenkins
(Standalone)
Genre: Thriller/ Espionage/ Action/ Spy Thriller
Publication Date: June 2019

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‘They were preparing for decades – now it’s time to take them down……’

Hiding overseas with a price on his head, Sean Richardson is tasked to lead a deniable operation to hunt down and recruit an international model and spy. Moving across Asia Minor and Europe, Sean embarks on a dangerous journey tracking an Iranian spy ring who hold the keys to a set of consequences the British Intelligence Services would rather not entertain.

As Sean investigates deeper, he uncovers dark secrets from his past and a complex web of espionage spun from the hand of a global master spy. As he inches closer to the truth, the rules of the game change – and the nerve-wracking fate of many lives sits in his hands.

The second in a set of spy thrillers that have been expertly crafted with stunning plot lines, magnificent locations, and twists that leave you gasping for air. Perfect for fans of Frederick Forsyth, Robert Ludlum, Tom Clancy, and Scott Mariani.

*Each book is a stadanlone adventure

‘Russia and Iran are our immediate threats,’ Jack stated. ‘Now, shall we start?’

Jack tapped a couple of buttons on the audio-visual console before a screen lowered itself at the end of the room, the lights dimmed automatically and a picture of a middle-aged man lit up the room. In his forties, Sean thought. Baby-faced appearance. He looked scared. The picture certainly gave that appearance. Sean could see it was a photograph taken by a surveillance team and it seemed to have been taken in London.

‘This is Sergei. A Russian GRU colonel who was a walk-in ten months ago.’

‘Bloody hell. A live walk-in. To where?’

‘A rural police station in Sussex. He covered his tracks well enough. He’s the GRU lead officer for their illegals programme. A massive catch.’

Sean sat forward and leant on the table in astonishment. The last time he had met a Russian sleeper agent, a woman called Natalie, she’d nearly killed him in a shootout in France. ‘An incredibly lucky catch I’d say. Is he kosher?’

‘He is. I’ve made sure he is by running him myself. I’ve used him on a few operations to make sure he’s not swinging both ways and, so far, he’s come out clean. He’s ready to trust now and we’ll provide him with full defection status once we get what we need from him. A deal we agreed on.’

Sean smiled, rubbed his chin and sipped his coffee, using two hands around his cup. ‘You’ve been plotting again Jack. This bloke better be one hundred percent legitimate, else I’m out.’

‘Well, you can judge him for yourself. You’re about to meet him. He’s sitting outside.’

Jack pressed a button on the console and the door opened. Sergei walked in accompanied by a chaperone, a tall brunette who looked more like a professor than an intelligence officer.

‘Sergei, this is Sean, a good friend of mine,’ Jack said, pouring water for both of them. Neither man stood to shake hands. Sean didn’t feel it was necessary, and a respectful nod sealed the introductions. Nothing more was said but an unspoken connection was made between the two men.

Sean wondered why on earth a senior GRU officer had handed himself in to MI5 after running sleeper agents for Mother Russia probably for a decade or more. The risk to his life if he was caught was immense.

‘Sergei, can you let Sean know about the mission you’ve been working on please?’

A pause. Then a wry smile from Sergei before he started to talk in immaculate English, with no sign of an accent. ‘I was instructed by Moscow to find a bomb-maker in Britain.’ He stopped abruptly, turning to Jack to check he had permission to carry on. Jack gave an indiscernible nod. ‘Not just any old bomb-maker,’ Sergei continued. ‘An ex-military one. An expert who could make the most complex of explosive devices.’

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I started climbing at 13, survived being lost in Snowdonia at 14, nearly drowned at 15, and then joined the Army at 16. Risk and adventure was built into my DNA and I feel very fortunate to have served the majority of my working career as an intelligence officer within Defence Intelligence, and as an explosive ordnance disposal officer and military surveyor within the Corps of Royal Engineers.

I feel privileged to have served for twenty-eight years in the British Army as a soldier and officer, working in Defence Intelligence and Counter-Terrorist Bomb Disposal operations, rising through the ranks to complete my service as a major. I served across the globe on numerous military operations as well as extensive travel and adventure on many major mountaineering and exploration expeditions that I led or was involved in.

I was awarded the Geographic Medal by the Royal Geographical Society for mountain exploration and served on the screening committee of the Mount Everest Foundation charity for many years. It was humbling after so many years of service when I was awarded the MBE for services to counter-terrorism in 2007.

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New Releases · Tours

Book Blitz: Heir of Lies by Mallory McCartney is FREE (ebook) from December 25-29, 2020 @MalMcCartney @RRBookTours1 #FreeBook #KindleUnlimited #HeirofLies #BlackDawn #Fantasy #YABooks #RRBookTours

Heir of Lies, the exciting first installment in the bestselling Black Dawn series by Mallory McCartney is FREE! From now until December 29th (Midnight PST) Heir of Lies will be free to download for Kindle!

Don’t miss out. Download your copy today!

Heir of Lies by Mallory McCartney
(Black Dawn #1)
Genre: YA Fantasy/ New Adult Fantasy
Release Date: April 20th, 2020

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“Hope was a dangerous thing. It could consume every dream and make them take flight, becoming wild daydreams in one’s heart and mind. Or hope could incinerate everything you thought you knew, burning you down to your core, leaving you raw and exposed for the world.”

Emory Fae has only known one thing—life at The Academy, a school for those who have special abilities. Following in her parents’ footsteps, the pressure to uphold their dream falls on her and one of her best friends—Adair Stratton. An outcast and feared by most, Adair longs to break away from the expectations dictating his future. With whispers of dark magic spreading across Kiero, Adair starts to doubt The Academy is all it seems.

An unexpected visit ignites new tensions as the roguish king from across the Black Sea, Tadeas Maher of the Shattered Isles, and his heir, Marquis Maher, sail to Kiero. Notorious for their pirating and wrath, for the first time in years, they demand the Faes listen to their proposition for a new treaty. Caught in the middle of politics, Adair and Emory, with the help of their best friends Brokk and Memphis, search for the one thing that matters the most—the truth.

Their world is tipped upside down as unlikely alliances are made, and war ravages Kiero. Through the throes of betrayal, lies, hidden magic, and love, Adair is faced with a life changing decision. Will he fight or bow to the darkness within?

But, Adair’s decision will change the course of Kiero forever, setting in motion irreversible destinies for everyone at The Academy as Emory Fae rises as heir.

Mallory McCartney currently lives in Sarnia, Ontario with her husband and their three dachshunds Link, Lola and Leonard. When she isn’t working on her next novel or reading, she can be found day dreaming about fantasy worlds and hiking. Other favorite pastimes involve reorganizing perpetually overflowing bookshelves and seeking out new coffee and dessert shops.

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New Releases · Promotions

Blog Tour: The Haunting of Gallagher Hotel by K.T. Rose @kyrobooks @RRBookTours1 #RRBookTour

We are thrilled to share this amazing new novel by K.T. Rose! The Haunting of Gallagher Hotel just proves that ghost stories are perfect any time of the year! 

Read on for an exclusive peek and an amazing giveaway to enter! 

The Haunting of Gallagher Hotel by K.T. Rose
Publication Date: November 5th, 2020
Genre: Supernatural Horror/ Paranormal

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Pride and greed infect the soul, anchoring the dead to Gallagher Hotel.

When Chris, a master thief, and Riley, a contract waitress, get mysterious invites to an exclusive party at the haunted Gallagher Hotel, they discover that there is more at play than simple celebrations.

Hidden truths are revealed, and all hell breaks loose. But the “party” has just begun.

Now, Chris and Riley face their demons as they fight to survive a hellish nightmare full of spoiled secrets, carnage, and vengeful spirits lost to the hotel dating back to the turn of the 20th century.

Will they survive the night? Or will their souls be devoured by the most haunted building in Michigan?

Chapter One

She’ll never forget the day she died.

Torches lit up the town square, illuminating scowling and shouting faces. The townspeople launched stones and spit, pegging Trudy’s arms and face as she trudged through the abhorrent mob. She cringed when a pebble struck her cheek. Pain erupted, shooting through her face like lightning striking the earth.  

Deputy Hill yanked her arm, leading her through the narrow path the townspeople created. Fists balled, Trudy groaned as the rope around her wrists dug into her skin. Her bare feet picked up glass shards and debris from the cobblestone path as she shuffled along.  

She glared around at the angry faces and recognized the men, women, and children of Holloway. She’d done more for them than any God before her. Many of those people owned the very businesses that lined the stone slab she marched across that night. Building and financing the rows of wooden businesses lining the town’s square accounted for half the things she’d done for Holloway. She fed the hungry, made clothes for cold children, and taught woman’s independence. The ever-growing list of the townspeople’s wants was endless. At one point, she didn’t mind the busy work. Fulfilling dreams of the once poor town kept her boisterous and distracted from her bitter reality. Trudy was Holloway’s personal shepherd, making the people her needy sheep.  

Hands snagged at her lavender tea gown, adding dirty prints to the blood drops and grime from the beatings in that putrid cell. She glared at the bare-faced man towering over her. The brim of his deputy hat cast a thick shadow, hiding his dark eyes and pale face.  

Deputy would miss her. She was sure of it. He got off on the assaults that bruised her face. His heavy fists pounded her bones and scraped her skin until she confessed. And even after her confession, he continued with his evening visits, slamming her body into cinder block walls and passing off open-handed blows to her nose, cheeks, and eyes.  

Trudy sighed. A bath with lavender and Epsom salt sounded good for the swelling. She didn’t realize how bloated and purple her once beautiful, fairly smooth skin had become until she passed by the picture window in front of the town’s jail just before they began her walk of shame. Her dark hair matted to her forehead, washed by sweat and blood. Her plump lips were chapped and bloated with bruises.  

Even then, her face pulsed with intense hurt. Pain shot through it whenever she winced. 

The sea of convictions roared, growing louder as she drew closer to the opposite end of the square.  

“Adulterer,” yelled a woman. 

“Traitor,” screeched a boy. 

“Murderer,” said a pot-bellied man. 

Their accusations sent a sickening jolt through her bones. She watched the path underneath her slowing feet, fighting back the tears. 

How could they turn on me like this? 

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K.T. Rose is a horror, thriller, and dark fiction writer from Detroit, Michigan. She posts suspense and horror flash fiction on her blog at kyrobooks.com and is the author of a suspenseful short story series titled Trinity of Horror, an erotic thriller novel titled When We Swing, and A Dark Web Horror Series. She also writes supernatural and paranormal horror novels and short stories. 

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