Interview with Lissa Bryan: Dominion

dominion-large-blog-tour

Release Date: December 3rd 2016

Published by: The Writers Coffee Shop

Genre: Fiction, Dystopian

Available from:

Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, iTunes, Powells, AbeBooks and TWCS PH

~~GIVEAWAY~~

Click HERE to Enter

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~~SUMMARY~~

A generation has passed since the pandemic known only as the Infection ended the world as we know it. In a little town in the Appalachian Mountains, Taylor has known only a harsh and brutal struggle for survival in a land littered with the rusted-out remnants of a lost world. By day, she labors in a coal mine. In the evenings, she tends a secret collection of beehives, and uses the honey to pay for lessons in survival skills, such as hunting, fishing and collecting herbs. Her home is a single room in a crumbling old motel, and her only companion is a pet box tortoise named Go she’s had since she was a child.

When her town is destroyed by a vicious gang of raiders known as the Nine, Taylor escapes with Dylan, the son of the mayor. Their only plan is to head south and escape the Nine’s vast territory, avoiding areas contaminated by meltdowns and industrial pollution where mysterious illnesses plague the residents.

Dylan has never known hunger or hardship and struggles to learn survival skills. He’s never known a woman like Taylor either. He tries to pay her back by teaching her to read and telling her the stories passed down from the world of Before.

They certainly didn’t plan on falling in love. Taylor fights it every step of the way, because in her world, any emotional attachment is dangerous. She’s been taught since childhood that love slows you down, makes you weak. But the feelings growing between them cannot be denied.

Taylor finds herself slowly breaking every one of her hard-learned rules of survival. She discovers that perhaps some of those things she’s always fought to avoid are the very things that make life worth living.

. . . And death shall have no dominion . . .”

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Hey, Sis. It’s been one busy year. I can hardly believe Dominion is coming out.

Me, either. It’s been a tumultuous year, but it’s finally here.

gibson-girls

I love the cover. Tell us about the art and artist.

I can take no credit for this cover. It was all the creation of the amazing T.M. Franklin.

Covers are always one of the most difficult parts of the process for me, because I’m not really a visual kind of girl, and finding appropriate images to use as a basis is… well, it’s a struggle.

I finally found some things I thought might work, and T.M. valiantly tried to make the ideas work, but they just never panned out. Neither of us were really satisfied with them. Then, one day, T.M. said, “How about we try something like this,” and presented her vision of the cover to me. I was just totally blown away. Not only was it terrific art, but it captured the mood perfectly.

 

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It’s great that the model representing Taylor on the cover isn’t wearing ridiculous clothing. Did you have to commission the cover in order not to have the heroine wearing barely-there disco bondage gear and stilettos?

Oh, lord… If you look through the available “post-apocalyptic” images out there, you’d get the impression that girls are going to be running around after the end of the world dressed like they’re headed to the club. T.M. had to do a bit of “paint work” on the model she used for this image because she was originally wearing a tank top. We also had to crop her hair. A woman wouldn’t have much time to tend long, flowing tresses in the Wasteland.

A bit of advice for anyone who’s survived the end of the world – wear sturdy pants and a sensible shirt. Scratches get infected, after all, and how do you expect to outrun the roving hordes of bandits in heels?

 

As a fan of Dylan Thomas, I’m intrigued by your title. How did you choose it?

 

Dylan is named after Dylan Thomas, and his sister, Emily is named for Emily Dickinson. Dylan recites Death Shall Have No Dominion to Taylor, and if you look closely through the book, you’ll see allusions to some of the lines stirred in here and there.

The book is about Taylor deciding her fears will have no dominion over her, just as much as she won’t let the Nine have dominion.

found on Pinterest

found on Pinterest

 

How did you end up writing a post-apocalyptic series?

I’ve always loved post-apocalyptic stories because they get down to the essence of what humanity is about. Stripped of our luxuries, our daily worries, and even the laws of our society, what kind of people will we be?  Is it really like Yeats said, that the center does not hold? What about the people who refuse to give up on that “center?”

 

 

You’ve said before that you see the world in your story before your characters show up. How did this post-apocalyptic world generate?

Justin and Carly had been clamoring in my mind for a long time. I think I mentioned to you in our first conversation that I was thinking about writing a post-apocalyptic fic. That was this story. But Carly and Justin weren’t people I could change into fic characters comfortably. Justin, in particular, had a very strong voice in my head, and Carly —well, you know how stubborn she can be.

Taylor’s story developed out of this, as I thought about what Justin said in the first End of All Things book about feudalism becoming the order of the day. I thought about how society would struggle to rebuild itself without a centralized government. Towns would be their own city-states. Criminals would start banding together, too. Justin and Carly encountered one of these kinds of groups in the second book, but the Nine is the evolution of that. What happens when the criminals start truly organizing their own society? What would be their guiding principle? Strength, of course – but how would they keep any kind of order? Even bandits have to have a system of order for their group to function.

I was also thinking of the panem et circenses philosophy of Juvenal. The lower ranks have to have entertainment, and more importantly, hope that they can climb the ladder themselves. Hence, the Gatherings where there’s gladiatorial-style battles for membership and rank. Taylor and Dylan see one of these from a distance.

The people that once bestowed commands, consulships, legions, and all else, now concerns itself no more, and longs eagerly for just two things – bread and circuses!

Decimus Iunius Iuvenalis (Juvenal) 55 – 127 AD

Jean-Léon Gérôme's painting of The Christian Martyrs Last Prayer. Photo: WIKI

Jean-Léon Gérôme’s painting of The Christian Martyrs Last Prayer. Photo: WIKI

 

But like Rome, the Nine have a critical weakness when they get spread out too much…

 

Who’s your favorite well-known dystopian fiction writer? Mine is Ursula K. LeGuin, although Margaret Atwood runs a close second.

There are so many, it’s hard to make a choice. I’ve read three copies of The Stand to tatters, and will soon have to replace the copy I have. The pages are literally falling out. (I need to start buying library editions of my favorites for durability.) Oryx and Crake, Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, Orwell’s 1984, A Canticle for Lebowitz, Octavia Butler’s Parable series, Brave New World by Huxley, Dies the Fire, I Am Legend, On the Beach… Oh! A new favorite – World War Z. There are just so many!

the-stand-stephen-king

 

Tell us an insider secret about the story.

Go the tortoise is really an Animagus. Okay, just kidding. But wouldn’t that be cool? To give them their own shape-shifting wizard who could conjure up food and repair shoes with a wave of his wand?

Okay, maybe some people figured this one out—Taylor is named after Taylor Swift.  I gave her an ability I’ve always wanted to have – to be able to sing.

 

go-the-tortoise-dominion

 

You’re an eclectic writer. Is there a new story percolating in that busy brain of yours, and if so, what’s the genre?

Right now, the one I’m writing in my head is about a woman with supernatural healing powers. She works as a midwife, and is famous because none of her laboring women have ever died. Queen Mary calls for her during her first “pregnancy.”

 

Ooh, another Historical-Paranormal! Always love chatting with you. Is it time for us to take over the world yet, Brain?

I think now would be a good time, honestly. I solemnly swear, I will be a benevolent Ruler of the Entire World. Well, maybe. I’m still considering tarring and feathering for those who dog-ear books.

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~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

lissa-alternate-picLissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot . . . though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.

She is the author of five other novels, Ghostwriter, The End of All Things, its sequels, The Land of the Shadows and Shadows Have Gone, and Under These Restless Skies.

~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~

Facebook * Website * Twitter

Praise for The End of All Things Series

Hope, love, and the strength of the human spirit are the backbone of this surprisingly uplifting offering from Lissa Bryan. ~ CBL Book Reviews

The End of All Things is more about hope and second chances, and I very much enjoyed the tale …. highly recommended for all fans of apocalyptic fiction. It’s a well-written book with excellent pace, plot, and best, it has real soul. ~ Jade Kerrion, Goodreads

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New Release: The End of All Things Box Set by Lissa Bryan

 

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The End of All Things Series by Lissa Bryan

Giveaway

For your chance to win one of….

$10 Amazon Giftcard

An e-Copy of The End of All Things Series

A Paperback Copy of The End of All Things Series

An e-Copy of Ghostwriter

A Paperback Copy of Ghostwriter

CLICK HERE

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The End of All Things by Lissa Bryan

(Book 1)

Category: Dystopian

Publication Date: January 24, 2013

Available From: TWCS * B&N * iTunes * Amazon * Kobo

Summary

TheEnd_Low-Res_CoverAfter a terrible virus ravages the planet, Carly Daniels, one of the few survivors, hides in her apartment in Juneau trying to survive the best she can with only occasional forays to gather food. With her is Sam, a wolf puppy she found starving on the streets. He becomes her companion and a reason to continue when giving up sometimes seems like the more attractive option. Still dazed with shock and grief, she hopes for the world to go back to normal soon.

She is discovered by Justin, an ex-soldier who is intent on making his way to Florida before the winter sets in. Justin coaxes her out of her hiding place and convinces her to join him on his journey, because a warmer climate will be their best chance against the extremes of Mother Nature.

Together, they begin a perilous journey through a nation laid to waste by the disaster. Challenges abound along the way. The weather, injury, and shortage of supplies all help to slow them down. In time, they discover that they aren’t the only survivors. Some are friendly but some have had their minds destroyed by the high fever. Then there are those who simply take what they want, leaving Carly and Justin with no choice but to defend what is theirs.

But their journey is not without joy and love. Together, they face every struggle, including an unplanned pregnancy. Despite the perils of bringing a child into a world of chaos, their baby is a new beginning for themselves and a symbol of hope for the other survivors they find along the way.

This is the story of their journey to find a place to begin a new life, and a home in each other.

Goodreads

………………..

Tales from the End by Lissa Bryan

(4 Short Stories / Companion Pieces)

Category: Dystopian

Publication Date: February 4, 2014

Available From: TWCS * B&N * iTunes * Amazon * Kobo

Summary

Tales-From-The-End-Low-Res-CoverFrom the author of The End of All Things comes a collection of short stories about the Infection that swept around the globe, decimating the population, and leaving behind a small number of survivors, unprepared to deal with the brutal new world which had replaced the one they’d known.

The Horsemen

L.A.’s mayor has declared quarantine to try to halt the spread of the Infection. Pearl sets off across the city to buy supplies, but already the world is changing. Something strange is in the air. The Horsemen are coming …

Veronica

When Veronica’s mother doesn’t come home from work and no one answers the phone when she calls for help, a nine-year-old girl is thrown into the chaos of a world coming to an end. Veronica decides it’s up to her to find her family. “Veronica” is the story of a little girl’s courage in the face of the end of all things.

“I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”

They called her Shadowfax– the mare Carly and Justin found on their travels. But before she was found by Carly, the retired dressage horse was known as Cloud. An unusual tale of the end, told through the eyes of a confused and lonely horse, left in her pasture.

Birthday

A previously-published bonus story. Carly knows Justin has never celebrated his birthday, and after society crumbled, no one knows what date it is, anyway. But she wants to do something special for him. Celebrating the little things helps them keep hope alive, and as a blizzard rages outside, a small gesture of love warms their home.

Goodreads

………………..

The Land of the Shadow by Lissa Bryan

(Book 2)

Category: Dystopian

Publication Date: August 21, 2014

Available From: TWCS * B&N * iTunes * Amazon * Kobo

Summary

The_Land_of_the_Shadow_Low-Res_CoverAfter surviving the Infection and a perilous journey through the wasteland that was once the United States, Carly and Justin have found a safe home in the isolated town of Colby.

Even so, balancing the duties of survival and a growing family isn’t easy. As they emerge as leaders, they face difficult questions about justice in a lawless land, basic human rights, and freedom in a world where strength defines worth. More than ever, they have to rely on one another for strength and support during the darkest of times.

The Crisis is far from over. Their fences won’t keep the world out forever, and a new threat is emerging—a gang of predators who see the town as easy pickings. When danger looms over Colby, Carly must decide how far she’ll go to protect those she loves.

It’s a journey down the long and broken road through The Land of the Shadow.

Goodreads

………………..

Shadows Have Gone by Lissa Bryan

(Book 3)

Category: Dystopian

Publication Date: March 26, 2015

Available From: TWCS * B&N * iTunes * Amazon * Kobo

Summary

Shadows-Have-Gone-Low-Res-CoverCarly Daniels knows what it is to suffer loss. She knows what it is to sacrifice. In the two years since a pandemic virus—known only as the Infection—decimated humanity, she’s made choices she never could have imagined. She’s condoned violence in the name of peace and done the unthinkable in the name of mercy. But with Justin at her side, she’s also learned there’s nothing she can’t face and nothing she wouldn’t do to protect those she loves.

But now another threat has arrived in the form of a uniformed man driving an army truck, claiming to represent the remnant of the United States military. Someone has set their sights on their community . . . and on Justin. The struggle to defend their little homeland is far from over, and the visitors may have brought more danger with them than just their weapons.

The shadows are closing in. Carly has to find out whether she has the strength to stand on her own when all of her support has fallen away. What remains when the shadows have gone?

Goodreads

………………..

Ghostwriter-3-years

Ghostwriter by Lissa Bryan

Category: Supernatural

Publication Date: October 11, 2012

Available From: TWCS * B&N * iTunes * Amazon * Kobo

Summary

Ghost_Writer_Low-Res_CoverUnemployed, with her savings dwindling, Sara Howell thinks things are looking up when she lands a ghostwriting job and rents the affordable island home of her favorite author, Seth Fortner, who mysteriously disappeared in 1925.

Strange things happen, making Sara wonder if Seth ever left. When she finds an old trunk of Seth’s letters, she delves into a world she never imagined, filled with love and a family curse it seems only she can break.

Goodreads

………………..

Author Bio

lbryanLissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot…. though only in her head.

Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.

Goodreads * TWCS * Twitter * Facebook * Website

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Interview with Lissa Bryan: Shadows Have Gone Giveaway

 

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PRESENTS. . .

Shadows Have Gone

Book 3 of End of All Things Series

by Lissa Bryan

Shadows-Have-Gone-Hi-Res-Cover

Release Date: March 26 , 2015

Genre: FICTION / Dystopian/ Romance / General

ISBN e-book: 978-1-61213-375-1

Available from: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

~~SUMMARY~~

Carly Daniels knows what it is to suffer loss. She knows what it is to sacrifice. In the two years since a pandemic virus—known only as the Infection—decimated humanity, she’s made choices she never could have imagined. She’s condoned violence in the name of peace and done the unthinkable in the name of mercy. But with Justin at her side, she’s also learned there’s nothing she can’t face and nothing she wouldn’t do to protect those she loves.

But now another threat has arrived in the form of a uniformed man driving an army truck, claiming to represent the remnant of the United States military. Someone has set their sights on their community . . . and on Justin. The struggle to defend their little homeland is far from over, and the visitors may have brought more danger with them than just their weapons.

The shadows are closing in. Carly has to find out whether she has the strength to stand on her own when all of her support has fallen away. What remains when the shadows have gone?

Goodreads * Add to Want To Read List

~~AN INTERVIEW WITH LISSA BRYAN~~

Jess: Holy cow, woman. This is our third interview in a month. It actually feels like we’re socializing on a regular basis!

Lissa: And you still want to talk to me. It’s a marvel.

I will always want to talk to you. All right, Trouble. What are we going to talk about today?

“The time has come,” the walrus said, “To talk of many things. Of shoes, of ships, and sealing wax, of cabbages and kings.”

Father Theo's Blog

Father Theo’s Blog

Hmm… Seems to me that the walrus cried before gobbling up his oyster friends, no? And you say I like to torture my readers. Do you know how many times you had me in tears during this book? I was beta reading and had to record comments while dying. My kids actually came to see what was wrong with me at one point!

Yeah, you love it, don’t ya!

Actually, no… I’m not a sadist like you, darling. 🙂 I don’t really enjoy torturing my readers, so it’s not intentional. I feel the same pain. When a character dies in one of my stories, I lose them, too. I never hear their “voice” in my head again. I wouldn’t kill off someone unless I was sure the story required it. Several times, I’ve attempted re-writes in my head to try to find a way around a death, but it almost inevitably leads me back to the same point.

You just had to kill off somebody I love, didn’t you.

In this case, yes. I loved that character, too, but the death only made sense, if you think about it. Life in the Wasteland would be brutal and pitiless.

In the name of Verisimilitude, I may forgive you someday. Just this once. So, you’ve been traveling again. Find any really creepy abandoned buildings to wander about in?

The schedule so far hasn’t permitted much exploration, but I’m going to try to squeeze some in.

2013-03-23 12.09.08 The End Lissa

Photo by Lissa Bryan

2013-04-06_The End Lissa

Photo by Lissa Bryan

 

I have been following your exploits. I live vicariously through you.

If the Apocalypse hits for reals, do you have plans?

You mean besides curling up on the floor and crying?

Hey, that’s my plan!!!

I’m not sure I would make it, honestly. I talk a good game, but I don’t have Carly’s moxie. I am very much a spoiled 21st century girl who needs her creature comforts. “Roughing it” for me is staying at a hotel without room service.

Tell me about it. Every time my kids ask if we can camp or fish, I start stammering, make an excuse and run away.

no camping

I had to start a fire from scratch over at my grandmother’s house last winter, and I was dismal at it. I found myself having to stop and say, “Okay, Lissa, if Carly can do this, so can you.” It took me several tries to get the blaze going. Justin would surely have chided me for wasting matches.

I can start a fire, only because we have a fire pit out in the yard. But Hubbs likes to dump green or wet wood in there (it’s convenient). That ticks me off.

You would laugh so hard if you could see my office right now. There was a really good sale on, so I picked up all sorts of treats the fam likes, but if I were to leave the goodies in the kitchen they’d be gone in a day. So I have 6 boxes of cookies, a huge bag of mini chocolate bars, some chips, nachos, popcorn and a 40 box package of Kraft Dinner in here. The wine is conveniently close. If the zombies show up tomorrow, I have stuff to barter. Do you stow food in sneaky places? Do you hide the yummy Cheezits from others?

I’ve discovered the hard way that if I hide things, I forget where I put them. Hilarity ensues.

But then you find hidden treasure. That’s what I tell myself, anyway. 🙂

Lost-items

I do have survival-type stuff, but not because I’m prepping for the apocalypse. What I’m thinking of is natural disaster and a short-term interruption in the flow of supplies. So I have gallons of water, a case of peanut butter, survival food bars (which taste abominable, but are light in case of evacuation), a supply of necessary meds for the humans and pets, and various weather gear. My household could survive comfortably for a week or two if we were cut off by a flood or tornado. Albeit, I’d be extremely grumpy because of the lack of tea.

I only keep survival supplies on hand during the summer. Well, we do have supplies in the trunk of the van, in case there’s a blizzard. I figure there are a lot of hands in the house and in an emergency they can all help carry something. It’s probably a bad plan. LOLOL!

!cid_9725685E07654F2FA8A3B2AD7AE3FA6C@user6mzwul6dyw

Unlike me, you aren’t a foodie. But you like your tea. I’ve never asked you what your favourite kind of tea is.

English breakfast – as black as my soul, and strong enough to tan hides, but sweet enough to induce diabetic coma in an elephant. “One lump or two?” Are you joking? Leave the sugar bowl and go get another.

I can drink my tea without sugar, but I put a lot of it in my coffee. We need to have a cuppa tea. And maybe, watch some Vikings.

I’ve told you: getting us together would likely destroy the earth.

Then we’ll do it when we’re old.

by Merja's Dreams -flikr

by Merja’s Dreams -flikr

 

I love the book.

Thank you. I love it, but I also hate it, because it means saying goodbye to Carly and Justin. I’m going to miss those two, especially hearing Justin’s “voice” in my head. Carly is so upbeat and optimistic, but Justin is more like me with his sarcasm and dark humor.

 

Depositphotos_12160317_XXL The End Lissa

I’m thinking and sporadically working on other “Wasteland” books, and maybe Carly and Justin would pop up in my new characters’ travels. That would be neat.

Well, you know where to find me when it’s time for a beta reader. 😉 Good spending time with you, Sis. Thanks for joining me. xoox

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

bc1e2-lissabryan2

Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot…though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.

She is the author of four other novels, Ghostwriter, The End of All Things, its sequel, The Land of the Shadows, and Under These Restless Skies.

 

 

 

 

~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~

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Praise for Shadows Have Gone

“I laughed, I cried, I was gently amused, but what could I expect? Times are tough, no one is trustworthy and yet there is a sweet innocence about some characters that hit you right between the eyes; they are always so positive and wanting to see the best in others. Once again, Lissa Bryan has taken the handoff from a previous book and run with it at breakneck speeds with barely a misstep in sight!” – Dianne

Goodreads Review

 

~~OTHER TITLES IN THE SERIES~~
Ω
After a terrible virus ravages the planet, Carly Daniels, one of the few survivors, hides in her apartment in Juneau trying to survive the best she can with only occasional forays to gather food. With her is Sam, a wolf puppy she found starving on the streets. He becomes her companion and a reason to continue when giving up sometimes seems like the more attractive option. Still dazed with shock and grief, she hopes for the world to go back to normal soon.
She is discovered by Justin, an ex-soldier who is intent on making his way to Florida before the winter sets in. Justin coaxes her out of her hiding place and convinces her to join him on his journey, because a warmer climate will be their best chance against the extremes of Mother Nature.
Together, they begin a perilous journey through a nation laid to waste by the disaster. Challenges abound along the way. The weather, injury, and shortage of supplies all help to slow them down. In time, they discover that they aren’t the only survivors. Some are friendly but some have had their minds destroyed by the high fever. Then there are those who simply take what they want, leaving Carly and Justin with no choice but to defend what is theirs.
But their journey is not without joy and love. Together, they face every struggle, including an unplanned pregnancy. Despite the perils of bringing a child into a world of chaos, their baby is a new beginning for themselves and a symbol of hope for the other survivors they find along the way.
This is the story of their journey to find a place to begin a new life, and a home in each other.

 

Ω

Tales from the End Book 1.5

The Horsemen
L.A.’s mayor has declared quarantine to try to halt the spread of the Infection. Pearl sets off across the city to buy supplies, but already the world is changing. Something strange is in the air. The Horsemen are coming …
Veronica
When Veronica’s mother doesn’t come home from work and no one answers the phone when she calls for help, a nine-year-old girl is thrown into the chaos of a world coming to an end. Veronica decides it’s up to her to find her family. “Veronica” is the story of a little girl’s courage in the face of the end of all things.“I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”
They called her Shadowfax– the mare Carly and Justin found on their travels. But before she was found by Carly, the retired dressage horse was known as Cloud. An unusual tale of the end, told through the eyes of a confused and lonely horse, left in her pasture.Birthday
(A previously-published bonus story.) Carly knows Justin has never celebrated his birthday, and after society crumbled, no one knows what date it is, anyway. But she wants to do something special for him. Celebrating the little things helps them keep hope alive, and as a blizzard rages outside, a small gesture of love warms their home.
Tales of courage, tales of survival… Tales from the End.
Ω

The Land of The Shadow Book 2

After surviving the Infection and a perilous journey through the wasteland that was once the United States, Carly and Justin have found a safe home in the isolated town of Colby.Even so, balancing the duties of survival and a growing family isn’t easy. As they emerge as leaders, they face difficult questions about justice in a lawless land, basic human rights, and freedom in a world where strength defines worth. More than ever, they have to rely on one another for strength and support during the darkest of times.

The Crisis is far from over. Their fences won’t keep the world out forever, and a new threat is emerging—a gang of predators who see the town as easy pickings. When danger looms over Colby, Carly must decide how far she’ll go to protect those she loves.

It’s a journey down the long and broken road through The Land of the Shadow.

 

 

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Review + Giveaway: Shadows Have Gone by Lissa Bryan

 

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PRESENTS. . .

Shadows Have Gone

Book 3 of End of All Things Series

by Lissa Bryan

Shadows-Have-Gone-Hi-Res-Cover

Release Date: March 26 , 2015

Genre: FICTION / Dystopian/ Romance / General

ISBN e-book: 978-1-61213-375-1

Available from: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

~~SUMMARY~~

Carly Daniels knows what it is to suffer loss. She knows what it is to sacrifice. In the two years since a pandemic virus—known only as the Infection—decimated humanity, she’s made choices she never could have imagined. She’s condoned violence in the name of peace and done the unthinkable in the name of mercy. But with Justin at her side, she’s also learned there’s nothing she can’t face and nothing she wouldn’t do to protect those she loves.

But now another threat has arrived in the form of a uniformed man driving an army truck, claiming to represent the remnant of the United States military. Someone has set their sights on their community . . . and on Justin. The struggle to defend their little homeland is far from over, and the visitors may have brought more danger with them than just their weapons.

The shadows are closing in. Carly has to find out whether she has the strength to stand on her own when all of her support has fallen away. What remains when the shadows have gone?


 

~~EXCERPT~~

“There’s other news,” Justin said. “We made contact with a man driving an army truck.”
“The army?”
“Someone with the army?”
“There’s an army?”
“Whose army?” Pete’s voice rang above the excited babble.
“That’s the right question,” Justin said. “Whose army? He might have been wearing a uniform and claiming affiliation, but I have my doubts.”
“He claimed to be from the US Army?”
Claimed,” Justin said, stressing the word hard. “And his claim had a few inconsistencies. I was in the Army, and I know. Whatever this guy is a part of, it’s not the army as we knew it.”
“What did he want?”
“Said he was out scouting and saw the smoke. He agreed to leave a message outside of Clayton if his people want to get in contact with us again. And I would imagine they will.”Shadows-Have-Gone-3D-Paperback-eReader
“Last thing we need is another fight,” Grady said. He took off his hat and wiped the sweat from his forehead. “You think they know where we are?”
“General area. We wouldn’t be that hard to find if someone was really searching for us. If they’re really army, then yes, they know exactly where we are as we speak. But as I said, I have my doubts.”
“Think it will come to a fight?” Pete asked.
Justin scratched his chin. “I really can’t say. What I can say is that we always need to be prepared for it, prepared to defend what is ours.”
“What if they really are the army? Would we be America again?”
“Wait. When did we stop being America?”
“America is dead.” This came from David, his voice as blunt as a dropped stone. “We all saw it die two years ago. I don’t know what we are now, but the Constitution sure ain’t in effect anymore. There’s no government. There’s no social contract holding us together. That’s what America was, you know—a collective agreement of the people. Now we’re just—” He sliced a hand through the air.
“If the army is still active, that would mean there is a government, which would make this still America,” Grady said. “They’d be the government’s representatives, establishing order.”
Justin shook his head. “You’re thinking way too far ahead. Even if they are US Army—and that’s a very big if—they don’t have control of the whole country. There is no centralized government, no law enforcement. They’re not coming to rescue us.”

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REVIEW:

If you like adventurous, apocalyptic action stories, do not miss this series. And this volume is the best of the three.

I was lucky to beta edit every book in this series and this instalment is an emotional roller coaster. It has all the feels! I honestly don’t want to tell you anything about it because I’m loathe to give anything away.

You will respect Carly. You will fall in love with Justin. Kaden and the folks of Colby will impress you. I adore Pearl. What more can I say? It’s for sale now, so go and grab it!

Lissa will be back here for an interview on Tuesday, March 31st. I do hope you’ll come back to hang out with us.

Happy reading!

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

bc1e2-lissabryan2

Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot…though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.

She is the author of four other novels, Ghostwriter, The End of All Things, its sequel, The Land of the Shadows, and Under These Restless Skies.

 

 

 

 

~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~

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Praise for Shadows Have Gone

“I laughed, I cried, I was gently amused, but what could I expect? Times are tough, no one is trustworthy and yet there is a sweet innocence about some characters that hit you right between the eyes; they are always so positive and wanting to see the best in others. Once again, Lissa Bryan has taken the handoff from a previous book and run with it at breakneck speeds with barely a misstep in sight!” – Dianne

Goodreads Review

 

~~OTHER TITLES IN THE SERIES~~
Ω
After a terrible virus ravages the planet, Carly Daniels, one of the few survivors, hides in her apartment in Juneau trying to survive the best she can with only occasional forays to gather food. With her is Sam, a wolf puppy she found starving on the streets. He becomes her companion and a reason to continue when giving up sometimes seems like the more attractive option. Still dazed with shock and grief, she hopes for the world to go back to normal soon.
She is discovered by Justin, an ex-soldier who is intent on making his way to Florida before the winter sets in. Justin coaxes her out of her hiding place and convinces her to join him on his journey, because a warmer climate will be their best chance against the extremes of Mother Nature.
Together, they begin a perilous journey through a nation laid to waste by the disaster. Challenges abound along the way. The weather, injury, and shortage of supplies all help to slow them down. In time, they discover that they aren’t the only survivors. Some are friendly but some have had their minds destroyed by the high fever. Then there are those who simply take what they want, leaving Carly and Justin with no choice but to defend what is theirs.
But their journey is not without joy and love. Together, they face every struggle, including an unplanned pregnancy. Despite the perils of bringing a child into a world of chaos, their baby is a new beginning for themselves and a symbol of hope for the other survivors they find along the way.
This is the story of their journey to find a place to begin a new life, and a home in each other.

 

Ω

Tales from the End Book 1.5

The Horsemen
L.A.’s mayor has declared quarantine to try to halt the spread of the Infection. Pearl sets off across the city to buy supplies, but already the world is changing. Something strange is in the air. The Horsemen are coming …
Veronica
When Veronica’s mother doesn’t come home from work and no one answers the phone when she calls for help, a nine-year-old girl is thrown into the chaos of a world coming to an end. Veronica decides it’s up to her to find her family. “Veronica” is the story of a little girl’s courage in the face of the end of all things.“I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”
They called her Shadowfax– the mare Carly and Justin found on their travels. But before she was found by Carly, the retired dressage horse was known as Cloud. An unusual tale of the end, told through the eyes of a confused and lonely horse, left in her pasture.Birthday
(A previously-published bonus story.) Carly knows Justin has never celebrated his birthday, and after society crumbled, no one knows what date it is, anyway. But she wants to do something special for him. Celebrating the little things helps them keep hope alive, and as a blizzard rages outside, a small gesture of love warms their home.
Tales of courage, tales of survival… Tales from the End.
Ω

The Land of The Shadow Book 2

After surviving the Infection and a perilous journey through the wasteland that was once the United States, Carly and Justin have found a safe home in the isolated town of Colby.Even so, balancing the duties of survival and a growing family isn’t easy. As they emerge as leaders, they face difficult questions about justice in a lawless land, basic human rights, and freedom in a world where strength defines worth. More than ever, they have to rely on one another for strength and support during the darkest of times.

The Crisis is far from over. Their fences won’t keep the world out forever, and a new threat is emerging—a gang of predators who see the town as easy pickings. When danger looms over Colby, Carly must decide how far she’ll go to protect those she loves.

It’s a journey down the long and broken road through The Land of the Shadow.

 

 

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Character Interview: Justin from Lissa Bryan’s Land of the Shadow

 

The Land Of The Shadow

 

The End Of All Things II
By 
Lissa Bryan


Release Date: 21st August 2014
Genre: Dystopian
ISBN e-book: 978-1-61213-264-8
 
Available from: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

Summary:
After surviving the Infection and a perilous journey through the wasteland that was once the United States, Carly and Justin have found a safe home in the isolated town of Colby.
 
Even so, balancing the duties of survival and a growing family isn’t easy. As they emerge as leaders, they face difficult questions about justice in a lawless land, basic human rights, and freedom in a world where strength defines worth. More than ever, they have to rely on one another for strength and support during the darkest of times.
 
The Crisis is far from over. Their fences won’t keep the world out forever, and a new threat is emerging—a gang of predators who see the town as easy pickings. When danger looms over Colby, Carly must decide how far she’ll go to protect those she loves. 

It’s a journey down the long and broken road through The Land of the Shadow.

 

Character Interview:

 

Jess: Hello, Justin. It’s good to see you again. Things have changed a lot since last we spoke. How are you?

Oh, it’s you again. You’re that author who said she had a crush on me last time, aren’t you?

 

Jess: I have a soft spot for you, but I don’t hit on married men. You’ve settled down and I’m glad to hear it. How’s the family?

Well, the family’s bigger, as you might have noticed. We have a son now: Kaden. Seems strange to say I have two kids. I never thought I’d make much of a father, and here I now have a toddler and a teenage boy. Sometimes, I’m not sure which one of them is the greater challenge.

 

Jess: Oh, yeah, tell me about it! Each has its own set of unique challenges. I suspect your definition of family has changed since last year.

I think most of our definitions have had to go through a change. “Family” is the people you love, plain and simple. We’ve had all sorts of families here in Colby, and they make it work, as long as they have that love to hold them together.

I guess you could say I’ve gone through some changes myself to be saying something like that. I never really thought family and love were all that important before Carly came into my life, but she’s helped me to see that it’s the thing that holds all of human society together.

 

Jess: You lead a community now, with Carly. Tell us about Colby.

We’re growing. We’ve got almost thirty people in our town now. Carly and I tell people that we’re co-leaders, but really, it’s more like I’m vice president. What’s amazed me the most is watching how Carly has grown into the role of leader. I always knew she had talents and smarts, but it’s like she was born to do it. She’s had to make some very hard choices, as I think you know, and there’s been a price she’s had to pay for it. But she’s strong. Stronger than she knows.

 

Jess: Yes, she is. How does your community function?

By the skin of our teeth, honestly. It’s been hard. Our farming hasn’t been as successful as I’d hoped, and so we don’t have a lot of food. Trade’s been bad, too, because people are starting to avoid this area on account of the rumors there are some bad guys in the area, preying on travelers.

Still, we’re getting by. We’re going to make it. We just figured out how to get a tractor going using a wood gasifier for fuel, and that will help. And despite small squabbles here and there, we’ve got good people in this town. They’re hard workers and they care about making this community work.

Carly has faith that we wouldn’t have been brought this far just to fail. She’s certain our destiny is to lay the groundwork for the future, like we’re the founding mothers and fathers of the next chapter of human history. You ought to hear her. She gets all poetic when she talks about it.

In any case, I’m glad she’s so confident. I don’t want her worrying about this stuff. She has enough on her mind with running the town.

 

Jess: People must lead very different lives now than they did before the Infection. What’s normal now that would have been thought extraordinary then?

I mentioned that family groups have changed. We’ve got families comprised of several adults instead of just a pairing… gay, straight, bi, different ethnic groups… no one blinks an eye any more. The kids all seem happy and healthy, and that’s all that matters.

I know one thing that bothers Carly is that kids aren’t getting to go to school. We’ve got them working alongside the adults these days. Maybe one day we’ll have the luxury of leisure time for formal education, but right now, we just don’t have the ability. Carly tries to encourage reading as much as she can. She was tickled pink to see Kaden reading Beowulf the other day.

 

Jess: As a leader, what is of most concern to you?

My first priority has to be security. Here’s the thing… You build a nice community with walls to protect it and start storing up food, and someone’s gonna want to take it from you. That’s just the way it is now. We have to defend what’s ours. But I can’t just hand someone a gun and say, “Here, go guard the Wall.” They have to know what they’re doing, or they’re going to get themselves killed. I’m trying to train them as best I can, but with the struggle of daily living, finding time for training is hard.

Food is my second worry. We’re just not getting enough calories out of the farming right now in comparison to the labor we put into it. I’ve done the math. Maybe the tractor will help with that. It’s a constant, nagging worry in the back of my mind, but we can’t concentrate on farming if we’re not safe and secure here.

 

Jess: What values and skills do you want to pass on to the next generation?

Right now, the focus has to be on giving them the skills they’ll need to survive. It’s a harsh and cold reality, but a lot of that social stuff and academic stuff has to take a background role. Carly’s doing what she can to fill the gaps, but I know she worries about what kind of future we’re building. She wants to do this right, you know?

 

Jess: It’s important to get it right. Mistakes are so costly. I’m going to ask you this again, because I’m wondering if your answer has changed: Will humanity survive?

If Carly has anything to do with it, yes. That woman has more determination than any human being I’ve ever seen.

 

Jess: I’m glad to see that you and Carly have made so much progress. I’m rooting for you!

Thanks. If Carly were here, she’d tell you we’re going to learn from our mistakes as a society and build something even better for the future. And I’m actually starting to believe it myself.

 



Author Bio: 
Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot…though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.
 
She is the author of three other novels, Ghostwriter, The End of All Things, and Under These Restless Skies.


Connect with Lissa Bryan on: Facebook, TwitterBlogand Goodreads
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Praise for The Land of The Shadow:
 

“What a ride! Carly and Justin are people that I’d like on my side, and on the side of my community. I highly recommend this to anyone who wants a story that will keep you glued to your reader or flipping pages in a paperback just as quickly as you can.”Kathie Spitz 

If you haven’t already, check out-
The End Of Things Book I
By 
Lissa Bryan
Available from: AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

 

 
 
 
 

 

Cover Reveal: The Land of the Shadow by Lissa Bryan

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PRESENTS. . .

Cover Reveal

for

The Land of the Shadow

by Lissa Bryan

The_Land_of_the_Shadow_Hi-Res_Cover

Release Date: August 21, 2014

SUMMARY

In the highly anticipated stand-alone sequel to The End of All Things, Lissa Bryan returns readers to a world devastated by disease, and the breakdown of modern society.

Two years after a horrific virus swept the globe, decimating the world’s population, Carly Daniels and her husband, Justin, have made a safe home in the isolated southern town of Colby. Protected by fences and a vigilant population, the residents there had somehow managed to keep the Infection out. Until the sight of Carly and Justin’s healthy baby girl convinced them it was safe to allow Outsiders in.

Now, in the wake of fresh losses, the small band of survivors struggles to rebuild a community. With only nineteenth-century technology to aid them, they must learn skills long forgotten to provide for their basic needs. Each day brings new challenges, and every choice they make affects their long-term survival. While Carly and Justin adjust to a growing family, and to their roles as community leaders, they must rely on one another for strength and support when they face difficult questions.

Carly has to decide how to move forward in a world where equality, justice, and freedom from tyranny are no longer guaranteed. And when new threats emerge, she has to decide what she is willing to do—and how far she’s willing to go—to protect what she has worked so hard to build.

When the end has come and gone, it’s a journey down a long and broken road through The Land of the Shadow.

EXCERPT

Justin was in the barn when he heard Carly scream, and the sound of it almost stopped his heart. It was a sound of sheer terror, a sound that could only mean . . .

He didn’t finish the thought. His brain clicked into action mode, based on training and instinct, pushing his own fear aside.

Justin jumped to snatch the pump-action shotgun mounted on pegs above the door and ran harder than he’d ever run in his life, pumping the weapon to chamber a round. He prayed as he ran. He didn’t know to whom he was praying, nor for what, but he prayed just the same.

Rounding the corner of the house, he saw Kaden and Carly running toward a goddamn big alligator in the front yard. Sam darted around its sides, snapping.

Justin caught up to Kaden just as the beast decided that Carly’s direction was a better avenue of escape than the path blocked by the snarling wolf and the two running men. It charged right at her, its mouth wide, tail thrashing in its wake. Carly jumped for the porch, clutching at the post, her foot braced on the rail. Kaden charged up the steps and swept Dagny up into his arms, flinging open the screen door to scramble inside the house.

Dagny yelled something that sounded like, “No, kay!” as the keys tumbled from her hand to clatter on the floorboards. Justin heard her wail as the screen door slammed behind Kaden. But she was safe, and that was what mattered at the moment. Carly still clung to the porch rail, her eyes wide. Safe, too, Justin noted, as his mind switched over to seek-and-destroy mode.

The alligator kept running across the lawn and straight into the cornfield, surprisingly fast for such a large, awkward creature.

“Not the corn!” Justin swung wide to try to drive the reptile toward the road instead, but the alligator saw safety and concealment in the thick patch of tall green stalks. It charged into the patch, clearing a three-foot-wide path of broken stalks with every swipe of its thrashing tail.

A flash of movement from the left caught Justin’s eye, and Pearl jumped in front of the alligator with a shout, waving her arms to prevent it from charging deeper into the field. The gator hissed at her and brandished its gaping maw, but began to back away.

More people from the town, who had been drawn by Carly’s scream, ran across the lawn toward the corn patch. The confused alligator found himself surrounded, and he turned, crushing more stalks. Justin swore.

He caught Pearl’s eye and didn’t even need to tell her what he needed. She shouted and feigned a lunge to get the gator’s attention, and it swung around to hiss at her.

He darted to the gator’s side and aimed the shotgun at the back of its head. “Clear!”

“No, Justin!” Carly shouted. “Don’t!”

Justin groaned. His wife, the animal lover. Was she going to say something like, He can’t help he’s an alligator, and insist Justin transport the thing back to the swamp? He was already picturing wrapping the beast’s jaws with duct tape or something to avoid losing a goddamn hand in the process when she reached his side.

Instead, she pulled out the .45 she wore at her hip and blasted the gator three times in the head. It slumped to the ground, dead as Caesar.

“I didn’t want you to use the shotgun and tear up the hide,” Carly said.

God, he loved her. He felt a grin stretch his cheeks.

She turned toward the house but called over her shoulder to the staring townspeople as she ran to check on her baby. “We have meat.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lissa-Bryan

 

 

Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot…though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.


She is the author of three other novels, Ghostwriter, The End of All Things, and Under These Restless Skies.

 

 

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

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Under These Restless Skies Tour: Interview with King Henry VIII

Under These Restless Skies By 

Lissa Bryan 


Available from AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS

Summary: 
 
Will Somers has always thought himself unlovable. When he encounters a creature of myth and magic, he seizes the chance to finally have a wife and family of his own. Emma is a selkie—one of the immortal fae-folk of the sea—bound to Will by the magic of her kind, and eager to learn about life on land. She has to learn to adapt quickly to human customs, because Will is headed for the court of Henry VIII, to serve as the king’s fool. It’s a glittering, dangerous world, where a careless word can lead to the scaffold and the smallest of gestures is loaded with political implications. Anne Boleyn is charmed by Emma’s naïveté and soothing selkie magic and wants Emma for her own fool. Can Will protect his newfound love from the dangers that lurk in every shadow? Circa regna tonat: around the throne, the thunder rolls.

Author Bio:


Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medallist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist, who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot . . . though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.


 

 

 

 

Interview with His Majesty, King Henry VIII:

Ah, noble readers, today we are graced with the presence of His Majesty, King Henry VIII.

 Henry VIII 2

Good day, Your Majesty. How fare you?

Well as always, Lady Brown. Those of us chosen by God are rich in His blessings.

I understand you have recently received the gift of a fool named Will Somers. What is he like?

He’s an odd one, that Will Somers, and I speak not of his crooked back. He spends his free time in the company of that wife of his, and does not seek the company of other ladies, if you understand my meaning. Material wealth also seems to mean little to him. He gives away what coin he has— and not in bribes or gifts to seek advancement, but to the poor. Did you hear how he tricked Cranmer out of one hundred pounds? And what did he do with it? He went straight out of the house and distributed it to the poor at the gates of the archbishop’s palace.

I cannot understand it. Any man can be bought, but I have yet to find his price.

Are Will and Patch very different?

Patch is a “natural,” my lady. Surely you know the difference? His wits are addled. Cardinal Wolsey gave him to me as a gift before Wolsey’s … unpleasant situation occurred. Wolsey valued the fool highly, for whatever reason… Methinks Wolsey used to have him sing. But I have singers enough. Patch is far more amusing when the court is teasing him. ‘Tis almost as amusing as a bear baiting to watch him become befuddled. But Emma has spoiled that of late, marching in whenever she sees Patch upset and putting a stop to it. No matter. There are always other entertainments.

Will is an “artificial” fool, one who tells jokes and the like to entertain the court. His wit is keen, and he has a way of putting things into perspective for me that makes my troubles seem lesser. And so I indulge his fancies, such as setting someone free from prison or buying a cloak for a beggar.

detail937

Will is married, is he not? What manner of woman marries a fool?

As to why such a woman would end up as the wife of a fool, I can only conclude the girl’s father must have been deeply in debt, and sold her hand in marriage to Will. For a time, I thought Emma was half-addled herself, because she seemed to know naught of court life, or the way a woman should behave. Certainly, Emma’s father put little effort into raising her properly, because she does not know to drop her gaze in the presence of a man, or defer to him. Her manner is as bold as that of a man, and seems to feel herself equal to her husband. Will is so besotted, he seems content to allow her to wander about in that delusion.

Nor has she any notion of the natural order of the world. Just the other day, I espied her in conversation with one of the charwomen. I tried to explain to Will that it is unseemly for a servant of the queen to be seen in the company of such a lowly creature, but he merely shrugged and said she is kind to all. Bah, what can you expect from a fool?detail454

 

Is Emma Somers fair?

Long have I puzzled over this. She is not the most beautiful woman of my court, nor is she the most blessed by grace, or artful in manners. Yet there is something about her that draws my eye…

Your Majesty allows Will to call you ‘Uncle Hal’. Is it customary to grant servants such favours?

Fools are different, Lady Brown. They are somewhat between a relative and a pet. Formality cannot be expected from most of them, especially the witless, like Patch, and so they are excused from it.

Having lost most of my family, ‘tis pleasant to hear an endearment again. If only I could be so close to my own son, Henry FitzRoy, but the boy is sickly and cannot stay long at court. And my daughter … Well, Will says she may get her stubbornness from her father.

Court gossip has it that Will Somers promised Your Majesty that he would always tell you the truth. Is this true? Was his promise amusing?

Verily, methinks that man doesn’t know how to lie. And what is a promise to a fool, anyway? No more than a promise to a woman.

Does Your Majesty consider Will more than a servant?

I suppose he is ‘family’ of a sort, which is why I had him included in several of my portraits. I have given him a chamber of his own, but if he were unmarried, he would sleep with the hounds on the floor by the fire, as Patch does.

henrydetail9

It is just past the day of St. Valentine. What thinks the king of Cupid and his arrows?

I have been struck by the dart of love many times. Why, only recently, I noticed a fair maiden of the court, and it seems God’s will is leading me toward her…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 






Giveaway:

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Connect with Lissa Bryan on: 

Other novels by Lissa Bryan

 
                                                  Ghostwriter                The End of all Things
Short stories by Lissa Bryan

 

                                             Tales From The End   The Golden Arrow and The Butterfly

Coming soon The Land of the Shadow 

 

 
 
 
 
 

Tales from The End by Lissa Bryan Review & Sneak Peek

tales-from-the-endWhat would you do if society, as we knew it, ended? That’s the killer question in Lissa Bryan’s The End of All Things. I don’t go out of my way to read dystopian novels, but this book is one of my all-time favourites because it’s delivered with a big dose of compassion and hope.

Today, Lissa’s released a companion set of short stories entitled Tales from the End. If you’re a fan of this series, or if you simply enjoy dystopian fiction, go and snap it up. It’s the perfect complement to TEoAT.

*Ssh, don’t tell anybody, but I’ve been privileged to read the sequel*

Don’t ask me! I’m not telling you a darn thing. Our hero, Justin would shoot me.

Tales from the End is a set of four short stories. By the time I was five pages in, I was totally engrossed. Not many writers can hook you with a short story. Pearl, the character in the first, positively owns me. You’ll love getting to know her. The second story’s protagonist, Veronica, humbled me with her bravery. I got a big lump in my throat!

The third story is about a horse named Cloud. Her story begins sadly but ends on a hopeful note. And the last story is a bright flame in a dark place. Sweet, sweet Carly and Justin…

*sigh*

It’s a troubled time but one that bleeds compassion and hope. A Lissa Bryan story delivers that. Maybe that’s why I admire her so much and count myself so lucky to be her friend. So, what are you waiting for? Go and read it! And let me know afterward what you think.  🙂

 

From the author of The End of All Things comes a collection of short stories about the Infection that swept around the globe, decimating the population, and leaving behind a small number of survivors, unprepared to deal with the brutal new world which had replaced the one they’d known.

The End of All Things told the story of Carly Daniels and Justin Thatcher’s travels across a shattered nation in search of a safe place to settle, after the pandemic. But it was also a journey into love, and an affirmation of hope. Carly finds strength in her faith that things can be even better than they were before, that compassion and charity are not luxuries; they are what make us human. Life endures, and so does love. The End of All Things is only a beginning.

And now, Lissa Bryan gives us three new stories in Tales from the End.
Two of them are an introduction new characters from the upcoming sequel to The End of All Things, and the other two are a visit with old friends.
The Horsemen

L.A.’s mayor has declared quarantine to try to halt the spread of the Infection. Pearl sets off across the city to buy supplies, but already the world is changing. Something strange is in the air. The Horsemen are coming …
Veronica

When Veronica’s mother doesn’t come home from work and no one answers the phone when she calls for help, a nine-year-old girl is thrown into the chaos of a world coming to an end. Veronica decides it’s up to her to find her family. “Veronica” is the story of a little girl’s courage in the face of the end of all things.
“I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”

They called her Shadowfax – the mare Carly and Justin found on their travels. But before she was found by Carly, the retired dressage horse was known as Cloud. An unusual tale of the end, told through the eyes of a confused and lonely horse, left in her pasture.
Birthday

A previously-published bonus story. Carly knows Justin has never celebrated his birthday, and after society crumbled, no one knows what date it is, anyway. But she wants to do something special for him. Celebrating the little things helps them keep hope alive, and as a blizzard rages outside, a small gesture of love warms their home.
Tales of courage, tales of survival… Tales from the End.

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Excerpt:

Veronica made herself a bologna sandwich at lunchtime and ate it in front of the TV. The soap operas should be on now, but they were still showing the news. That guy her mom thought was so cute, Troy Cramer, was talking about how everyone was getting the flu. Lots of people were at the hospital, and they were closing schools in some places.

She put in another movie. By the time it was done, her mom should be home from work. She would tell Veronica that her car had broken down and she’d lost her cell phone or something, and be so proud of Veronica for taking care of herself. Or she would say that David had gotten sick, but it was a false alarm and everything was fine now.

Everything would be fine.

Five p.m. Any minute now.

Five thirty. Just traffic. Or David’s daycare teacher wanted to talk.

Six.

Seven.

Veronica sobbed as she curled up on the couch, crying like she hadn’t cried in years. “I want my mom,” she told the empty room.

She wiped her face with her palms and went into the kitchen. It was unavoidable now. She had to call her dad. She couldn’t spend another night alone. As she dialed, she remembered a book she’d read last summer called Pippi Longstocking. It was about a little girl who lived all by herself, and when she’d read it, Veronica had thought about how much fun it would be to have Pippi’s big house and all of that freedom. But now, such a fate seemed horrifying.

Her dad’s phone rang. And rang.

And rang.

His voice mail didn’t even pick up. She waited, because surely he’d see their number on the screen and pick up. He would pick up because she was letting it keep on ringing, and he’d realize it was something important when she didn’t hang up.

It kept on ringing.

Veronica thought she’d cried out all the tears she had, but she was wrong. She sobbed into the receiver, and those sobs turned into hiccups. She had to grab a paper towel from the counter to blow her nose, because she couldn’t breathe.

The phone stopped ringing, and a voice came on the line. Veronica sucked in a breath so fast she choked. She started crying again when it was just a recording saying that the other party wasn’t answering. Then there was just the hum of an empty line.

.¸¸•.¸¸.•´¯`• (¯`•♥•´¯)•´¯`•.¸¸.•.¸¸.
Tales from the End will be available February 4.

.¸¸•.¸¸.•´¯`• (¯`•♥•´¯)•´¯`•.¸¸.•.¸¸.

 

 
About the Author:

Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medalist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot…. though only in her head.

Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.

She is the author of two novels, Ghostwriter and The End of All Things. Her third, Under These Restless Skies, will be released on February 20, 2014.

 

Cover Reveal: Under These Restless Skies by Lissa Bryan

Coming soon, a new historical romance from Lissa Bryan set in the days of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, Under These Restless Skies.


Synopsis:

Will Somers has always thought himself unlovable. When he encounters a creature of myth and magic, he seizes the chance to finally have a wife and family of his own. Emma is a selkie—one of the immortal fae-folk of the sea—bound to Will by the magic of her kind, and eager to learn about life on land. She has to learn to adapt quickly to human customs, because Will is headed for the court of Henry VIII, to serve as the king’s fool. It’s a glittering, dangerous world, where a careless word can lead to the scaffold and the smallest of gestures is loaded with political implications. Anne Boleyn is charmed by Emma’s naïveté and soothing selkie magic and wants Emma for her own fool. Can Will protect his newfound love from the dangers that lurk in every shadow? Circa regna tonat: around the throne, the thunder rolls.

 


Release Date: February 20, 2014

And now, for the cover!

 

Excerpt:
They came to the doorway of the presence
chamber. Fermor gave his name to the steward.
The man flipped through a list. “Oh, aye.
Fermor.”
“Correct, my lord. I am come to bring His Majesty
a gift.”
“A fool, was it?”
Fermor gestured at Will. “And a fine one at
that.”
The steward did not seem impressed. “Go and come
again tomorrow. His Majesty is in a temper today.”
The king’s visit with his sister must not
have ended well. Fermor sputtered, panicking as he saw his chances slip away.

 

“ ’Twould seem the best time for him to be
regaled by a fool’s antics,” Will noted.
The steward stared at Will for a moment and
then gave a slight smile. “This way.” He led them through a tapestry-covered
door through the empty presence chamber. Will paused, awed by the sight of the
throne—the symbol of the king’s power—wide and heavy, gilded and jeweled, set
on a carpeted dais. Beside it was a smaller throne for the queen, and over both
were canopies bearing the coat of arms of each. The steward bowed to the empty
throne as they passed, and they copied him before continuing out into a smaller
gallery.
“Tarry here,” the steward instructed. “The
king is at cards with the Lady Pembroke. You will be called to him when he is
finished.”
Will’s stomach churned. He’d never felt less
amusing in his life, and his wits were logy. A horrifying thought occurred to
him. If he was unable to persuade the king to take him on, he wouldn’t be able
to keep Emma. He couldn’t take her with him if he returned to the comedy
troupe. Panic made his mind blank for a moment, and he did not hear his name
called. Fermor elbowed him, and Will stumbled to his feet and followed the
steward into a chamber.
Will didn’t have much of a chance to survey
his surroundings. He had an impression of tapestries over dark wood paneling
and the glitter of gold, but his eyes were on the floor in front of two figures
seated in x-shaped chairs. He knelt.
“Your Majesty, Lady Pembroke, if it pleases
Your Graces, I present Master Richard Fermor and Will Somers.”
“Rise,” the king said. Will stole a glance
at him and saw a large, but still muscular man with thinning reddish-blond
hair, dressed in a dark brown velvet doublet, ornamented with pearls and gold
frogs. The king had gained weight in the last few years, and to disguise it he
had widened the shoulders of his surcoats. Will had to admit the effect was
powerful. His large codpiece jutted up from the center slit of his doublet,
also meant to convey power, or at least, virility. His eyes were small, a
piercing blue-gray. Will caught a glimpse of them before he lowered his gaze to
the floor.
“So, Fermor, you have brought me a fool.”
The king’s voice was low and gruff, and he didn’t sound much interested. The
lady seated at his side wore a French hood and an initial pendant attached to
her strand of pearls, the letters “AB” twined together. She was garbed in a
dressing gown of brilliant scarlet, trimmed in ermine. It was casual raiment
only the highest nobility was entitled to wear outside their own bedchamber,
but Anne Boleyn was now royal in all but name. Just weeks ago, the king had
created her Marquess of Pembroke, the highest noble title in the land. She
patted the small dog in her lap.
“Aye, your majesty,” Fermor said. “If it
pleases Your Grace.”
“Well, fool, what can you do?”
Will was startled. He hadn’t expected the
king to speak to him. “I—I can juggle, Your Majesty,” he croaked. “I can make
jests, tumble, and sing a little.”
“Let us see it, then.”
Will’s hands trembled as he withdrew the
balls from his bag. “If it pleases Your Majesty,” he started. He straightened
his shoulders as best he could, and said in his haughtiest tone, “I, Will
Somers, am the best juggler in England.”
The king snorted and Will hoped it was from
amusement. He fell into his act, bragging about his abilities while seeming to
lose track of his juggling and keeping the balls in the air seemingly by
accident alone. He was grateful he had performed this particular act so many
times, because he thought he’d completely forgotten his lines, but they slipped
from his mouth of their own accord, and his limbs seemed to move themselves.
The king guffawed a couple of times, and he thought he heard Anne laugh at one
point. Will ended with one of the balls balanced on the tip of his nose, before
dropping it into his hands and sweeping low into a bow.

 

“Well done, Master Fool,” the king said, and
he seemed a bit more jovial than he had when Will first entered the room. Or
perhaps it was wishful thinking on Will’s part. “But tell me this: I have fools
already who can juggle and make jests. Why would I wish to have you at my
court? What have you to offer that they do not?”
The answer popped from Will’s mouth as
though he had rehearsed it. “Because I will do something none of your council,
lords and ladies, nor servants will do.”
The king lifted an eyebrow. “And what might
that be?”
“I will tell you the truth, Your Majesty.”
Fermor gasped. Anne burst into laughter.
“Oh, I do like him.”
The king cast an amused glance at her. “Is
that so, Master Fool? Then perhaps you are worth it, after all.”
“But you must make an oath to me,” Will
said.
The king’s eyes narrowed a bit, but he
calmed when Anne giggled at Will’s audacity. “What?”
“You must swear it, as the word of a
Christian king.” Will’s mouth was as dry as paper and his heart thudded in his
chest, but he continued. “You must swear to me, on your honor, you will never
hold it against me when I tell you the truth.”
The king stared at Will, his mouth agape,
and then he burst into laughter. He slapped his knee and elbowed Anne, who gave
him a sharp glance at being prodded by his arm, before she laughed along with
him as a courtier trained to echo the king’s mirth.
“You have my word,” the king said, as he
accepted a perfumed handkerchief from one of his serving lords to wipe away the
tears seeping from his eyes. “Or must I write it out and put my royal seal to
it?”
“Your word is sufficient for me,” Will
replied.
“I am flattered at your trust, Master Fool,”
the king said in solemn tones and burst into guffaws once again. “Go and have
my steward find you rooms. Have you a wife?”
“I do.” Will’s mind whirled. He hadn’t
expected this, and he didn’t want Emma to live at court, but there was nothing
he could do. Refusing lodgings offered by the king would be a gross insult.
“Bring her tomorrow,” the king commanded. “I
wish to see what the wife of a fool looks like.”
“Much like every other wife in England,”
Will said, and that sent the king into laughter once more.
“Go, and come back on the morrow.” The king
waved a hand at the steward. “Find him some decent garb, and some for Milady
Fool as well.”
Will bowed deeply and followed the steward
from the room. “And for you, Fermor,” he heard the king begin before the door
was shut behind them. Will’s knees gave out and he collapsed to the floor. His
head swam in sick circles. He sat back on his heels and looked up at the
steward. “Pray, pardon,” he rasped.
The steward gave a slight smile. “You are
not the first to react in such a manner.” He held out a hand and Will stared at
it in surprise. The steward was a lord, and here he was, offering a hand to a
baseborn commoner. Will took it, and the steward helped him to his feet and
drew him near.

 

“If ever a man needed to hear the truth,”
the steward whispered, “ ’tis that man in there.” He drew away again, and
his manner was once more brisk and officious. “Follow me.”
~.~


Links:

 

Find the book on Goodreads ~ Author’s Website ~Book Website ~ Author’s Facebook ~
Author’s Twitter ~ Author’s Youtube
 

The Nature of Ghosts

Do you believe in ghosts? Forty-seven percent of  Canadians do. That’s a couple of percent higher than citizens of the USA.

When I was sick as a toddler, my mother says she heard a baby crying. She’d check on me, but I was asleep. She felt the baby was trying to warn her. It took a long time for my diabetes to be detected because the family doctor took my symptoms lightly. Once I was diagnosed, the baby stopped crying. My mother still smiles fondly when she talks about it.

I’ve seen ghosts. I wish I wasn’t sensitive to them, because the ones I’ve seen are evil. My daughter, who loves horror movies, laughs at me because The Woman in Black freaked me out and she thought it was dumb. Lucky girl. I didn’t sleep for four nights afterward and when I did sleep, it was with a light on.

Woman in Black

Whoever wrote that movie has seen a real evil spirit.

 

 

 

There’s an interesting reality show on TV called The Dead Files. Have you seen it? It pairs a psychic (Amy Allan) with a retired New York detective (Steve Dischiavi). He looks into the history of a haunted house while she examines it for paranormal activity. After each conducts an independent investigation, the pair meets to exchange findings.

The thing that’s really cool about it is how their findings match up. And it’s spooky boo when he presents historical evidence supporting the ‘story’. But what I really like about this show, where I avoid watching others, is Amy.

The Dead FilesAmy has honed her ability to hear spirits convey their stories and invites them to speak to her, not through her. She claims there are good entities and evil ones, just as there are among the living. She says they’re stuck, doesn’t hesitate to call them souls and confirms that God and Jesus, when called upon, protect us from harmful spirits. You don’t hear that often out of the psychics on TV. She also says toying with the paranormal can hurt us, by giving evil a conduit to work through. That’s why hauntings often get worse over time.

 

 

The-Ghost-and-Mrs-Muir-PostersSome people, like my mother, say they’ve had positive encounters with friendly ghosts. And since there are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy, I’m going to agree it’s possible. Wouldn’t it be great if The Captain from The Ghost and Mrs. Muir was really-really-real? If you haven’t watched that movie, you should. Timeless romance. He’s all ranting-rude at the beginning and suave/noble by the end. Dreamy. *sigh*

 

I know another fictional guy like that. Lissa Bryan’s debut novel, Ghostwriter, showcases another romantic leading ghost, Seth Forster, who is an angry, frustrated spirit until a young fan of his writing, Sara Howell moves into his house, befriends him and sets about clearing the family curse. Of course, it’s a love story, and the plot twist alone makes it worth your time. This month, Ghostwriter is the monthly read at The TWCS Book Club, and Lissa attends weekly to answer questions. It’s a super opportunity to interact with her.

 

coverISBN (paperback): 978-1-61213-121-4
ISBN (ebook): 978-1-61213-122-1
Released October 12, 2012
Order from TWCS, Amazon, iTunes

Read the first chapter here.
See the trailer here.

So why would a good ghost not choose to move on? According to Amy, it’s either being prevented from leaving (by a living person, an evil spirit or its own past), or it’s protecting someone (living or dead).

 

The Shining Jack Nicholson

The Shining
Jack Nicholson

Bad ghosts? They’re here to make trouble. Make no mistake about that.

Think I’m crazy? Regardless, I’m bringing you a friendly warning for Halloween. Don’t disturb the dead.

 

 

 

 

Next time I post, I’m going to tell you a ghost story. Fiction or not? You decide. Then, leave me a comment. In November, I’ll tell you if it’s true, or a figment of my demented brain.

Apparently, most people think ghosts are benign. What do you think? Leave me a comment.