Today we have a jam filled post for Jeff Altabef's Red Death. We will have info about the book and author. A great interview with Jeff, an exclusive excerpt form the book and lastly but not least my review of Red Death. Plus an awesome giveaway. Make sure to check everything out and enter the giveaway.
Happy Reading :)
Every child of Eden fears the Red Death. All those afflicted with the plague die young, their souls stripped away as punishment for ancient sins long forgotten. For centuries, Guardians have protected Eden from the Red Death by killing outsiders who stray too close. They must keep Eden a secret if they are to survive.
Seventeen-year-old Aaliss is a highly-trained and dedicated Guardian, but when her rather odd thirteen-year-old brother discovers a cure to the plague, her world is turned upside down. The discovery is a miracle, yet miracles are dangerous in Eden.
The corrupt, all-powerful High Priest brands Aaliss and her brother Wilky as traitors, forcing them to run. They seek refuge in the last place Aaliss thought she’d ever go—beyond the boundaries of Eden, and into the land of the Soulless. Here they must navigate a medieval world filled with witches, magic, and warrior kingdoms run by Elders who are only a few years older than her.
Aaliss yearns to return home to Eden, but she must protect Wilky at all costs. And when her heart tugs her deeper into the world of the Soulless, she questions everything she once believed, everything the Priests had taught her about those who live outside Eden—they are forever cursed, savage, soulless.
Has her soul been taken? Will she and Wilky fall victim to the Red Death, or might they die sooner in the center of a battle that threatens to tear apart the Soulless world? Or... might Aaliss finally find, against all odds, what her heart has yearned for all along?
Thanks for offering some extra questions for our bloggers Jeff! First, what’s your favorite meal and drink?
Coffee and chocolate! I'm not sure what that says about me. My favorite time to write is in the morning so coffee is a no-brainer. My mind can't start to function without my first cup of Joe. I also like to write in coffeehouses from time to time when I need a little more energy and can feed off of those around me. So when in Rome!
I have a pumpkin stuffed with tootsie rolls on my desk. It's a terrible habit that I quit from time to time, but it keeps coming back. I just grabbed another one! I'd like to say my favorite writing food is something healthy like kale, but I won't lie, and I hate kale!
Some of our staff have a love hate relationship with chocolate and coffee too! I bet that’s pretty common with our bloggers too. Now, the next question is tough, but do your best! Who was your favorite Character to write in Red Death?
This is such a hard question to answer. I really feel such a close connection to all of these characters, that choosing one is a bit of a "Sophie's Choice." I loved to write Piers. I thought he was such a deep character and certainly Aaliss was a lot of fun. She's a really strong character that most people love. The Viper and the High Priest were also a lot of fun. I always love dwelling on the nasty characters, but my favorite character to write was probably Wilky. I did a bunch of research before starting to make sure I captured someone with his condition just right. In many ways, he's the real hero of the series. Now I feel bad that I didn't mention Eamon or P'mina. Argh!
For such a tough question you did a really good job of explaining why so many characters in Red Death are loveable. Last but not least, and it may be another head-banger...who are your favorite authors?
This is a tough question too! I love a wide variety of genres. Really everything from thrillers (Dean Koontz), to historical fiction (Bernard Cornwell), to mysteries (Jonathan Kellerman) and even horror (Steven King). In the Young Adult genre I really like the characters Sarah J. Maas writes in the Glass Throne series. They come across as strong and memorable. I absolutely loved the End of Days series by Susan Ee. Her dystopian world and the use of angels was totally brilliant. I love the first person voice Joelle Charbonneau writes in the Testing Trilogy. She was a huge help when writing the Chosen Trilogy. Still, if I had one writing wish and could write like anyone, I'd choose Christopher Moore. He makes writing funny characters and situations seem effortless. I love his books!
Chapter 5 – Eamon
Eamon studied the faces around the campfire, worry etched on his own as he wondered whether this would be the last time they would all gather together. He sat between his two older brothers, King Dermot and Prince Fintan. Dermot had lived six winters more than Eamon had, and Fintan one, yet he was the planner and worrier. Often he wished he could be more like them, but he never stopped fretting about tomorrow, the next season, the next winter. All the council members, twelve in total, joined them this night, forming a loose circle around a campfire that had started to lose its intensity. They met in the Courtyard, in the middle of the Stronghold, a small city protected by a sturdy stone wall. The Stronghold stood in the center of Dermot’s kingdom between the Outpost to the north and the Settlement to the south.
When Eamon realized everyone had stopped talking and were looking at him, he remembered what they had been discussing. “We’ll have to slaughter more cattle this year. The tribe’s grown since last winter.” The answer was obvious to him.
“The herd’s also added numbers this year, my Lord,” added Keenan, the Cattle Master. Built broad and strong like a steer, he had been Cattle Master for three years, and Dermot trusted him. “I reckon we could cull the herd by another twenty over last year and still maintain the size.”
All eyes turned toward Dermot. His reign had already lasted six years, almost an eternity. The Sword of Power lay across his lap, a long sword so heavy that it required two hands to wield it in battle. Its blade gleamed in the firelight, and the many rubies in the gold and silver hilt sparkled brilliantly. An inscription, written in a language no one understood, ran down both sides of the blade and glimmered in the firelight. The smithies could no longer make a weapon like the Sword of Power. That knowledge had been lost. They made other swords, fine ones, victorious ones, but none so grand. Only the King could wield the Sword of Power, the tribe’s finest.
I really didn’t know what to expect or if I would like it going into this book. But I really enjoyed it. We get a colorful and complex dystopian world that is really well written and easy to dive into. The characters were great and had a great backstory and were easy to relate to. Far in the future the world is divided into groups or tribes. One major one is the people in and controlling Eden. A religus group that are govern their people with religion and fear. But they also have secrets. Big Secrets. Secrets they don’t want people to know. Outside Eden we find kingdoms and tribes that are run by magic and witches. We also have the Red Death, a disease that has wiped out a big part if mankind. And is still a great danger. The book is multiple point of view, which is nice because we got to see everyone’s going on, every tribe and group. Which made it so much easier to follow everyone and the story. Overall, great book and I had a hard time putting it down .I’m excited to see what happens next. I rate it 4 ★
Jeff Altabef is an award-winning author who lives in New York with his wife, two daughters, and Charlie the dog. He spends time volunteering at the writing center in the local community college. After years of being accused of “telling stories,” he thought he would make it official. He writes in both the thriller and young adult genres.
In the Young Adult genre, Jeff co-authored the Chosen Trilogy with his teenaged daughter, Erynn. The Chosen Series has won multiple awards including the 2015 Readers' Favorite Gold Medal for Best Coming of Age Novel, the 2015 Beverly HIlls Book Award for Best YA Fiction, and a Mom's Choice Award.
As an avid Knicks fan, Jeff is prone to long periods of melancholy during hoops season. Jeff has a column on The Examiner focused on writing and a blog designed to encourage writing by those who like telling stories.
You can sign up to Jeff Altabef’s newselter and get a FREE short story at: http://www.jeffaltabef.com/
Check out these great prizes from author Jeff Altabef, including a six month Kindle Unlimited Subscription!