Risingshadow has an opportunity to feature a guest post by Gail Z. Martin. This guest post is part of the author's Hawthorn Moon blog tour.
In this guest post, the author tells about Exile's Quest, which is the fourth book in her Assassins of Landria series.
Guest post: Exiles, Fugitives, Outlaws—Heroes by Gail Z. Martin
The fourth book in my Assassins of Landria series—Exile’s Quest—came out in 2022, and it’s a pivotal point in the story of two unconventional King’s Shadows who risk everything to save the kingdom they’re sworn to protect.
The Assassins of Landria series is ‘buddy flick’ epic fantasy, with two best friends and their stalwart valet who break all the rules for the right reasons. The books in the series are also shorter than usual for epic sagas, with fewer point-of-view characters and intertwined plot threads. It’s got all the epic fantasy feels without the epic length, for people who love reading swords and sorcery but can’t commit to a big door-stopper of a book.
I’ve had so many people tell me at conventions that they gave up reading epic fantasy because they no longer had the time to immerse themselves in a big thick book. This series is for them—still rich with drama, characterization, intrigue and a dash of humor—but books they can read in a weekend instead of a month.
I’m currently working on Book 5: Outlaw’s Vengeance, which will come out in early 2023 and is the next-to-last book in the series. The first four books are available on Kindle, Kindle Unlimited (KU), paperback and audiobook.
Here’s the blurb for Exile’s Quest: A vacant throne. A dark mystic intent on the crown. Two fugitive assassins risking everything to save the kingdom that exiled them.
Rule-breaking, unconventional assassins Joel “Ridge” Breckenridge and Garrett “Rett” Kennar are caught between dangerous allies and deadly enemies as the future of Landria hangs in the balance. The council of regents controlled by the Witch Lord threatens the succession after King Kristoph’s murder. Rett escaped his brutal captors scarred in body and mind. Now he’s struggling to control the untested powers unleashed by his ordeal and dream walks to a hidden cloister full of forbidden magic. Falsely accused of treason, Ridge hunts the mage who damaged Rett and uncovers a terrifying new threat.
Can a desperate gamble by outlaws and exiles avenge the king and save the crown?
Exile’s Quest is an action-packed epic adventure filled with loyal friends, honorable fugitives, secret sanctuaries, hidden magic, and unexpected explosions.
About the author
Gail Z. Martin writes urban fantasy, epic fantasy, steampunk and more for Solaris Books, Orbit Books, Falstaff Books, SOL Publishing and Darkwind Press. Urban fantasy series include Deadly Curiosities and the Night Vigil (Sons of Darkness). Epic fantasy series include Darkhurst, the Chronicles Of The Necromancer, the Fallen Kings Cycle, the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga, and the Assassins of Landria.
Together with Larry N. Martin, she is the co-author of Iron & Blood, Storm & Fury (both Steampunk/alternate history), the Spells Salt and Steel comedic horror series, the Joe Mack Shadow Council series, and the Wasteland Marshals near-future post-apocalyptic series. As Morgan Brice, she writes urban fantasy MM paranormal romance, with the Witchbane, Badlands, Treasure Trail, Kings of the Mountain and Fox Hollow series. Gail is also a con-runner for ConTinual, the online, ongoing multi-genre convention that never ends.
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David Gullen's Third Instar was published by Eibonvale Press (it's the 7th chapbook the Eibonvale Chapbook Line).
About David Gullen:
SFF writer and editor, current Chair of the Milford SF Writer's Conference, and past judge for the James White and Arthur C. Clarke Awards.
Click here to visit his official website.
About Third Instar:
Mazehew didn’t like the Grand Parade where the kite-men flew beyond the Edge. He didn’t like the sky beyond the railings, a sky that reached up and out and also down. He didn’t like the utter absence of ground inches from his feet, the way the blue air faded to stars in the evening, up and out and also down. Most of all he didn’t like how the Edge made him feel – small, like nothing. Insignificant.
Third Instar is a vivid, evocative and ultimately dreamlike fantasy novella set in a city on the edge of the world in the most profound sense – a city filled with colour and life, against which David Gullen creates a beautifully universal tale of romance and almost mythical loss.
REVIEW: THIRD INSTAR BY DAVID GULLENRead more ...
Mark Howard Jones' Star-Spawned: Lovecraftian Horrors & Strange Stories was published by Macabre Ink in March 2022.
About Star-Spawned: Lovecraftian Horrors & Strange Stories:
In these twenty tales of the weird and twisted you will visit temples dedicated to the worship of dark gods spawned under the diseased light of long-dead stars; find yourself lost in damned places where truth and sanity vanish like mist in sunlight; meet strangers who make you pray that all you think you know is wrong; and discover that love is really just another gateway to unending despair.
You may even find confirmation of the dreadful fact that you are what you always feared you might be.
REVIEW: STAR-SPAWNED: LOVECRAFTIAN HORROR & STRANGE STORIES BY MARK HOWARD JONESRead more ...
T.R. Thompson's A Flame of Song was published by Odyssey Books in December 2021.
About T.R. Thompson:
Tom is an Australian speculative fiction writer. He lives in Belgrave on the outskirts of Melbourne with his wife and two young sons.
When not writing or reading he spends too much time gaming and taking long meandering walks through the forest that always seem to end up at a tavern.
Click here to visit his official website.
About A Flame of Song:
The cycle of fate turns on.
In the capital of Sontair, still reeling from the recent assassination, Daemi, Frankle and Heather are helping as best they can to retain some semblance of order and control. With them is Wilt, trapped now in cat form, but still connected to Daemi through their shared mind, enabling her to identify and hunt down those servants of the dark that still infest the city.
Far to the east, in the mysterious mountain prison of Pankesh, Higgs has been called back from the wash of the welds and returned to his human body. He finds himself under the control of the Novus, the source of the spreading darkness. The Novus uses weldfarers – those who can ride the welds – to alter events across time, and has been tracking Wilt and Higgs ever since their days in Greystone.
As the Novus gathers his forces and reaches through time and space to twist the world to his bidding the companions must journey across the Eternal Sea to finally confront the dark and face their fate...
REVIEW: A FLAME OF SONG BY T.R. THOMPSONRead more ...
T.M. Blanchet's Herrick's End was published by Tiny Fox Press in May 2022.
About T.M. Blanchet:
T.M. is a former reporter, editor, and award-winning humor columnist, as well as the author of the "Dog-Friendly" travel series from Countryman Press and The Cow Crashed in to the Moon: Messing Up Motherhood in 7 Easy Steps. She founded the nonprofit organization Operation Delta Dog: Service Dogs for Veterans in 2013.
T.M. is also a producer at A Mighty Blaze, an initiative created in 2020 to help authors and indie bookstores reach readers during the Covid-19 crisis, and the producer and host of A Mighty Blaze Podcast. She is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Click here to visit her official website.
About Herrick's End:
You did nothing. You were nothing. And so, you shall remain here, until the end of your days. As nothing.
Ollie's only friend disappeared a few days ago, and now, he's frantic to find her. But he doesn't have much to go on until a mysterious note arrives which reads:
"Still looking for your friend? I know where she is."
Unfortunately for Ollie, the trail leads to the last place he'd ever expect.
The kind of place where magic spills like blood, vengeance is merciless, and escape seems all but impossible.
Worse still, it soon becomes clear that someone - or something - was expecting him.
Now, time is running out.
If Ollie has any hope of ever seeing home again, he's going to have to summon every last scrap of courage, smarts, and tenacity he can find. And none of it will matter if he can't get some help. Fast.
Because Ollie might not know much about the vast underworld that's ensnared him, but he does know this:
He'll never make it out alone.
REVIEW: HERRICK'S END BY T.M. BLANCHETRead more ...