Category Archives: Young Adult Books

Fantasy Book Spotlight: The Book Knights by J.G. McKenney @jgmckenney


Disclosure: This post contains compensated affiliate links and/or sponsored content. Click here to read more.

Fantasy (Arthurian, YA, Dystopian)


the book knights

From the award winning author of EON’S DOOR comes an Arthurian tale like no other.

When her parents are condemned to death by Morgan Fay for the crime of reading, Arti Penderhagen becomes a fugitive. Hunted by Mordred, the sadistic police captain who recites poetry to enhance his physical strength, Arti escapes to the Isle of Avalon, a sanctuary for outlaws. There she meets an old librarian named Merl who tells her about the Grail Tome, an ancient book in Morgan Fay’s possession that can alter the course of history. Can Arti steal the book in time to save her family?

THE BOOK KNIGHTS is a fantasy adventure in which knights wield words as weapons, librarians are wizards, and books can change the future.

$1.99 or Free on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon l Amazon UK l Amazon CA


Excerpt:

As the firestorm raged, her mind floated away from the horror. She was a young child again, sitting on her father’s lap, following his finger as it traced words on the page. She giggled and squirmed with excitement as the story unfolded, peeking ahead, eager to find out how the tale would end. Her mother leaned toward her from the adjacent chair, her smiling face awash in the light of the reading lamp. This is our secret, Arti. You can’t tell anyone. She could hear herself answer, I promise.

When the story was done, she reached across with her tiny hand and closed the book’s cover. She smiled up at her parents expectantly, waiting to say the ritual words together. And they lived happily ever after.

From somewhere in the cloud of her delirium, Arti Penderhagen heard the books on the shelves call to her, drawing her back to the present. Words echoed from their pages, guiding her hand along their bindings, showing her the way out.


About the Author:

jg mckenney

For his first novel, EON’S DOOR, J.G. (John) McKenney received the 2012 Reader Views Reviewers Choice Award, and was also a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award. John’s fascination with fantasy and adventure began at a young age when he discovered works like THE HOBBIT and THE CALL OF THE WILD. That early love of reading has matured into a need to tell stories that transport readers into worlds full of wonder and enchantment.

Website l Twitter


Paranormal Fantasy: Angels of the Knights – Fallon by Valerie Zambito @vzambito


Disclosure: This post contains compensated affiliate links and/or sponsored content. Click here to read more.

angels of the knights

Genres: Young Adult Paranormal Fantasy

Blurb:

When Fallon Angell died at the age of sixteen, her life changed forever.

The hallowed world of Emperica is everything she had ever hoped for as a mortal–immeasurable beauty, unconditional love and light. But, with affection for humankind still burning within her, she joins the Knight Caste to train as an angel warrior. As a Knight, she will give up her wings and return to the place that killed her to use her unique powers to search out and destroy the evil Kjin that roam the earth. As a Knight, she will stop at nothing to protect the mortals in her care.

The elders warn her that the path she chose will be a solitary one. That she will not have the same bond with humans as she once did. But, as far as she knows, the elders had never met Kade Royce.

When her duties place her in the path of the handsome former cop, emotions buried long ago rise to the surface and she is powerless to ignore the depth of her feelings for this young man. She knows instinctively that she has found what most people search their entire lives for.

Ignoring the risks, she invites him into her world of danger, but soon their lives collide with explosive consequence. As a result, Fallon realizes with heartbreaking despair that she can no longer hide from the painful truth. In order for Kade to live, she must destroy him.

add-to-goodreads-button


Buy Links:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Smashwords


About the Author: 

Valerie Zambito lives in upstate New York. A great love of world building, character creation and all things magic, led to the publication of her first novel in the epic fantasy series, Island Shifters in 2011 and the Angels of the Knights paranormal series the following year.

Other Titles by This Author:

Book One: Island Shifters – An Oath of the Blood

Book Two: Island Shifters – An Oath of the Mage

Book Three: Island Shifters – An Oath of the Children

Book Four: Island Shifters – An Oath of the Kings

Angels of the Knights – Fallon

Angels of the Knights – Blane

Angels of the Knights – Nikki (Coming Soon!)

Classroom Heroes


 

Connect with Valerie Zambito:

Website

Twitter

Facebook

Goodreads


YA Dystopian Spotlight and Author Interview: The Living and The Dead by Sara Furlong-Burr @Sarafurlong


Disclosure: This post contains compensated affiliate links and/or sponsored content. Click here to read more.

YA/Dystopian


the living and the dead

Dying is optional.
Living is forbidden.

The year is 2111, and scientists have discovered how to cheat death by extracting memories, thoughts, and personality traits from the dying, methodically implanting them into artificial bodies. At the time, it seemed too good to be true, never having to lose anyone to illness or time, and maybe it was.

Rejected as being nothing more than imposters of the living, the dead are shunned by society. Their families, friends, and neighbors, having grown to fear them, erected walls around their cities to keep them out. Over time, those cities were replaced with colonies overseen by governors to keep order.

At seventeen, Zaila Lockhart has only known isolation. Isolation from the world that extends both outside and inside her colony. As the daughter of the unpopular governor, she is the target of resentment, especially now that resources are becoming more scarce, since all trade between the colonies has been interrupted by a group marauders. Starvation seems imminent, and a war between the living and the dead over much-needed provisions looms on the horizon.

In search of food and other supplies, Zaila takes it upon herself to secretly venture outside her colony’s walls. Joined by Pax Muldoon, her only friend, the pair are ambushed by a group of scavengers. Identified as being the governor’s daughter, Zaila is brought back to the scavengers’ base in a city occupied by both the dead and their living sympathizers.

Zaila thought she knew everything there was to know about her captors, that the history being taught in the colonies was rooted in fact. But some lessons are better learned outside the classroom, where the living have grown to fear life, and the dead are the only ones truly living.

Free with Kindle Unlimited

buy1._V192207739_ amazon uk buy button 3


Excerpt:

Down the hall, the sound of doors opening and closing sent chills down my spine. Pax wrapped his arm around my trembling body and held me close to him, partly to comfort me and partly for his own comfort. “Get your knife ready,” he whispered.

“One step ahead of you.” The knife rested in my unsteady hand, ready for the action I’d hoped it would never have to see.

We held our breath when the footsteps left the neighboring room and approached ours. Through a small gap between the closet door and the door frame, a small grey glow appeared in the room, followed by footsteps that were suddenly rendered mute by the carpeted floor. More frightened than I could ever remember, I closed my eyes, willing the being to go away. But instead of heeding my prayer, the sound of boots on carpet continued to pulsate in my eardrums, narrowly beating out the sound of my own heartbeat.

And then the steps came closer, the glow more evident until it stopped. Too terrified to move, we remained still, even when the closet door began to open.


About the Author:

sara furlong

Sara “Furlong” Burr was born and raised in Michigan and currently still lives there with her husband, two daughters, a high-strung Lab, and three judgmental cats. When she’s not writing, Sara enjoys reading, camping, spending time with her family, and attempting to paint while consuming more amaretto sours than she cares to admit.

You can learn more about Sara at http://sarafurlongburr.blogspot.com, follow her on Twitter via @Sarafurlong, and read more of her ramblings via Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/EnigmaBlackKindle.


Author Interview:

Thanks for doing an interview! Could you tell our readers a little bit about your writing journey? You’re very welcome. My journey started about eight years ago. I’d had this idea for a dystopian trilogy involving superheroes in my head for several years and finally decided to begin writing it down, just to get the story out of my mind. In 2012, I decided to publish it (Enigma Black) on Amazon and was ecstatic when it was selected as a Kindle Book Review 2013 semi-finalist in the Sci-Fi/Fantasy category. I subsequently published the other two novels in the trilogy (Vendetta Nation and Redemption) in 2013 and 2014, respectfully. In 2016, I published The Living and The Dead, another dystopian novel, which will most likely turn into a series of its own.

How many books do you currently have published? I have four others books aside from The Living and The Dead, including a sci-fi/dystopian trilogy (Engima Black, Vendetta Nation, and Redemption) and a short story (A Second Chance) in the paranormal genre.

What has been your favorite book to write so far? Why? I would say Enigma Black, solely because it was my first book.

Are you currently working on a book? Will this be your next release? Yes, I’m parting ways with the dystopian genre for a bit and am in the middle of a contemporary romance entitled When Time Stands Still. I’m currently 50k words into it and hope to release it sometime late 2017 or early 2018.

What do you enjoy most about writing? I’m not great at expressing myself verbally and find that writing is the best way for me to express my thoughts and feelings. I also like the idea of being able to right wrongs and create worlds and situations in which readers can both relate and be entertained.

Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you deal with it? All the time. I think my writer’s block is more the product of self-doubt and striving for perfection than lack of content. I begin to doubt my abilities and over think things, which inevitably leads to frustration. To counteract this, I remind myself that the first draft is never perfect and to just write. I find that this invariably steers the ship in the right direction.

Have you ever had one of your characters take a twist you weren’t expecting and surprise you? Of course, I think that happens more often than not for writers. In particular, there is a character from the Enigma Black trilogy who I grew more attached to than any of the other characters (excluding the main character). In fact, I grew so attached to him that I thought about completely changing the ending I’d always planned for the trilogy as the original ending broke my heart.

Which of your characters is your personal favorite? Why? Zaila Lockhart from The Living and The Dead and Celaine Stevens from Enigma Black. Both are strong, independent women who stand up for what they believe in, even if it goes against the grain.

So far, what has been your favorite scene to write? Probably the ending scenes in Redemption, as they signified the end of a long and rewarding road for me.

What lessons have you learned since becoming a writer? Do you have any tips for new writers? I’ve learned that there’s always room for growth and improvement, and that I need to quit being so hard on myself. My tip to any future or new writers is to follow your dreams. Don’t get bogged down by the negative reviews (as they happen to everyone). Learn from your mistakes and keep pushing yourself.

If you were to recommend your books to a stranger, which book would you advise them to start with? Why? It depends. Since my books are essentially all in the same genre, I would probably recommend that if the reader is looking more for a young adult book that they start with The Living and The Dead, and if they want a more mature read, they should go for Enigma Black.

Now it’s time to get to know you! What are some of your favorite books and television shows? Movies? I like to read the same genre I write, dystopian novels with a hint of romance. As far as movies and television, I am a huge fan of The Walking Dead, Outlander, Orange is the New Black, and consider myself a bit of a Star Wars nerd.

If you had to sum up your life as a writer in ten words, what would you say? Insightful, frustrating at times, but always rewarding in the end.


Young Adult Fantasy Book Feature: Sins of the Fallen by Karina Espinosa


Disclosure: This post contains compensated affiliate links and/or sponsored content. Click here to read more.

Young Adult, Fantasy


sins of the fallen

add-to-goodreads-button

When seventeen-year-old Maximillion Taylor and his best friend, Jones go to a house party, he doesn’t expect to get kidnapped—much less by a succubus—and she’s not the only one on the hunt. Thrown into a world of angels and demons, where nothing and no one is what they seem, Max ventures to find his true identity and learn to fight the demons who pursue him. When his origin is revealed, it’s a race against the clock for a battle that will determine whether he can protect the ones he loves or succumb to his true nature.
Through lies, betrayal, love and pain, Max must prepare to face the demons before it is too late…

Buy this book now at:

buy1._V192207739_ amazon uk buy button 3


Excerpt:

What came next I didn’t see coming. Something was shining in Angela’s hand as she thrust it into the twin’s stomach.

A knife.

“They’re coming for him. They know. He’s not a secret anymore,” she gurgled out, and before I could react, she let out a loud shriek, sounding like a screeching bird but amplified. I covered my ears as they started to pop. When I looked up, there wasn’t blood oozing out of her, but a thick black liquid – and not just from the knife wound – it seeped out of her eyes, nose, mouth, even finger nails. The smell was even worse. The stench of decay filled the room and I tasted the bile rising up my throat. The shrieking stopped and Angela dropped whatever was left of her into the puddle of black liquid.

“What the-?” was all I could say before she crossed the room and pulled me up to my feet.

“Let’s go,” she said, but I couldn’t even move. My body felt heavy and I knew I was going to pass out. This feeling was getting too familiar, but I couldn’t dwell on it now. I was out.


About the Author:

Born in New York city, my family picked up and moved to South Florida when I was twelve. After high school I spent the next few years traveling and experiencing what life had to offer me. At twenty four years old, I’m back in South Florida in my third year of University-majoring in Communication studies. When not in the writing cave, I usually have my nose in a book or on Netflix, cut off from the world with a huge bowl of ice cream.

Facebook


Young Adult Fantasy Featured Book: In the Light of the Eclipse by Bryan Caron


Disclosure: This post contains compensated affiliate links and/or sponsored content. Click here to read more.

Young Adult, Fantasy, Mystery, Romance


eclipse_book_cover.jpg

Where God so loved the world, Heather (or as few have dared to dub her “the goddess of condemnation”) holds a much crueler hand over her inhabitants. Every seventeen years, under her ever-watchful eye, an eclipse renders her land dark, taking the soul of everyone over the age of seventeen to the land of the unknown nothing. In its wake, Heather bestows the gift of a child upon the land. Some believe this child has special powers; others believe she inhabits the souls taken by the eclipse. But no matter the belief, one thing is certain—without the child, the land would crumble.

Most accept the eclipse and live every breath with a love unmatched by any other. This is especially true of Zoe, whose seventeenth year of breath nears ever so close. Born under the eclipse, Zoe understands her life is a gift and that she will return that gift in kind—whenever that day may be (that is until she falls in love and discovers the dark secrets hidden in the heart of Heather).

Still others yearn for a longer life and curse Heather’s name. One such person was branded the name Kayla on her day of breath eighteen years ago. Unable to comprehend the meaning of such viciousness, Kayla believes such a sacrifice is unnecessary, even for the worst of mankind. Little does she know that a mysterious traveler may hold the key to ending the eclipse forever.

Zoe and Kayla are best friends.

This is their story.

Buy this book now at:

buy1._V192207739_ amazon uk buy button 3


Excerpt:  

From Chapter Two – A Secret Morning Swim

(Read Chapter 1 at http://publications.divinetrinityfilms.com)

On the morning that marked the beginning of Kayla’s eighteenth year of breath, Zoe got up an hour before the rooster’s crow and headed into Industry Quarters. She had never walked the streets at night before so it was a bit scary, but also quite amazing. The smell of baking bread was at its strongest and the bright glow of the full moon turned the artwork all around her into a fluorescent wonderland. It made it all the more brilliant to lie back in the shadows and watch a couple of kids turn paint into such beautiful pictures. She almost wanted to join them in taking brush in hand but she had something much more pressing to do, and time was of the essence.

Zoe inched her way through the slightly wilted bushes surrounding Kayla’s house and pressed her hands firmly on the glass of her bedroom window. Kayla never locked her window so it was quite easy to open and crawl in without rousing her, though she hoped the change in noise level from the roar of the machines didn’t do it for her. Thankfully, Kayla was still asleep when the room returned to silence. Zoe snuck up to Kayla’s bureau and shoveled her swimming suit, towel and a change of clothes into her pack, a task that took longer than expected (it couldn’t just be any old clothes; it had to at least look good together). When she was happy with what she had chosen, Zoe tiptoed back to Kayla’s bed and kissed her cheek.

“Wake up, sleepy,” she whispered into Kayla’s ear.

Kayla groaned and rolled over. “Go away.”

“Kayla, wake up,” Zoe said, shaking her shoulder.

When Kayla finally realized who it was, she sat up quickly and looked around as if her caretakers were hiding in the walls, waiting for just the right reason to take her to Quorum Circle for punishment. “Zoe,” she whispered. “What in Heather’s name are you doing here? What time is it?”

“It’s time to give you my gift.”

Each year, to mark the day of a person’s first breath, caretakers and friends would do something special for that person, from taking over that day’s chores to whisking them off to Serenity Lake for a grand snorkel, so long as it was something that was unique to the presenter of the gift. For this, the last gift Zoe would ever give Kayla, she wanted to do something more amazing than life. She pulled Kayla out of bed.

“What are you doing?”

“It’s a secret. Come on.”

Kayla felt a little blushed walking the streets of Industry Quarters in her sleeping gown, especially when they passed Henry (who had a not-so-secret crush on Kayla) sweeping flour out of his caretaker’s factory.

“Where are you two lovely ladies headed off to so early?” Henry said.

“No time to chat,” Zoe said, keeping from making eye contact. If she had, she would have felt obligated to stop, and Zoe was in far too much a hurry to do that. Henry did it for her.

“Just wait, I’ll come with.” Henry set the broom against the inside of the door and jogged after them. “Wait up.”

Now Zoe had to stop. “You can’t come, Henry.” Her hand was outstretched, keeping him from coming any closer. Kayla was pulled in behind her.

“Why? What’s the big deal?”

“I’m giving Kayla her gift. This is for her and I alone. So if you don’t mind…”

“Her gift? What could you possibly be giving her this early?”

“None of your business,” Kayla interjected. She stepped around Zoe, who felt a little honored and shocked (though she didn’t know why). “Now be a good little boy and get back to work. Go on.” She waved her hand. How Kayla could get away with that was beyond Zoe, even if Henry was a year younger than her (and no more than a couple of months older than Zoe, for that matter). Maybe she was using his infatuation against him.

Then again, maybe not.

“No. I want to see what this is.”

“We aren’t moving until you leave,” Kayla said.

“That’s fine. I have all day.”

“We don’t,” Zoe whispered to Kayla. She acknowledged her, but with only the slightest turn of her head so that Henry might not notice.

“I don’t want to have to get physical,” Kayla said. Her voice was strong, commanding. “But I will if I have to.”

“Do you promise?” Henry said, which disgusted Kayla to no end.

“Just leave us alone.”

“Tell me where you’re off to and maybe I will.”

“No.”

Henry shrugged. Zoe grew ever more irritated. The sun would be up soon; once it was, her gift would be ruined. If she weren’t such a lady (or had been taught to be such by her caretakers), she probably would have popped him one (or urged Kayla to, in the very least) just to make her point. Luckily, she didn’t have to.


About the Author:

Bryan Caron is a multi-talented, award-winning artist with works in several mediums, including print, film and design. After acquiring a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and an associate’s degree in computer graphic design, Bryan studied filmmaking and film editing while working at a performing arts studio in San Diego, California. He took this knowledge to write, direct and edit films under his banner, Divine Trinity Films. Soon after, he would team up with the Fallbrook Film Factory, a non-profit film consortium, to continue his growth in the areas of writing, directing and editing, all the while fleshing out his talents in fiction writing (publishing Year of the Songbird and Jaxxa Rakala: The Search in 2013), working as a graphic designer, and beginning his first blog: Chaos breeds Chaos.

His works as writer and director include the short films My Necklace, Myself (Best Screenplay, Short Film, 2009 Treasure Coast International Film Festival) and 12, the feature film Secrets of the Desert Nymph, and the commercial Charlie’s Ticket, which ran on dozens of television stations and in movie theaters in San Diego County to advertise the Fallbrook International Film Festival. Works as editor include the short film Puzzle Box and No Books, the first of several episodes he has edited for the online sketch-series, Treelore Theatre.

Bryan currently resides in Riverside County.

www.divinetrinityfilms.com

chaosbreedschaos.com

Connect with Bryan Caron:

Blog

GoodReads

Website

Facebook