Tuesday, December 31, 2013

It's the Grand Finale for Secrets Kept!!



On Tour with Prism Book Tours

The Secrets Kept Tour Grand Finale!

This tour explored the World of Nälu: 
Where a story with adventure, action, love, betrayal, and a quest takes place.
We visited sites, learned more about the cuisine, and were introduced to some fantastical characters.

12/9: Launch

12/10: Kelly P’s Blog - Guest Post

The five must see places of Western Nälu



The Nations of Nälu welcomes you to the western region of Nälu. Home to the elves, two of the dwarf clans, and the humans. Most likely you came by ship, so we will start with the beautiful land of Zurial...



What is a visit to a new land without exploring some of the cuisine? I don’t know about you, but I LOVE food and discovering new favorites. If you’ve been by my Facebook page, you probably have guessed that. Ha! Well, here in Nälu we have quite a variety. Today we’ll just look at a few favorites...

12/12: fundinmental - Guest Post

In the course of edits, Secrets Kept lost the opening chapter where we catch a glimpse of the Sacred Pearl. Hopefully, I’ll be able to share that scene with you all one of these days. But later in the story, we learn that the Sacred Pearl was kidnapped during the attack on Dagmar, the headquarters of the Guardians.



But what is so special about the Pearl?


12/13: Next Page Reviews - Review

This book is amazing! It's a gorgeous fantasy with lots of action-packed scenes and spellbinding paranormal and fantasy elements. It's a quick read (I need more!!) and is a definite page turner. It's unique, original, and gorgeously written, perfectly for any lover of good, descriptive fantasy.

12/13: Giveaway Breaking News - Guest Post

The defeat of Lord Stygian released the people, breaking the hold of the Tainted One, but she vowed to return. Who would stop her then? Who should rule the nations? What will become of the giants? Can they be trusted? The questions gave way to chaos, but Karasi, one of the lost rulers of Zohar, long imprisoned by the Tainted One and Stygian, brought peace again and established the first Guardian Circle. They were charged with guiding and teaching of the nations, so that history would never repeat itself, and the nations would never have to endure another oppressive rule such as Lord Stygian’s again...

12/15: Colorimetry - Review of Desert Rose

"This is an intro to how JL Mbewe's stories aren't all peachy happy endings, necessarily, how she delivers an entire world, finished and beautiful, with minimal words. With one short story, she gained a fan-for-life with me. (I'm stubborn, too... you're stuck with me now, JL!!) I love this book!!"

12/16: Katie’s Clean Book Collection - Guest Post

On the northern edge of the Prathae Plains lies an ancient forest. Wisps of a grey mist ooze between bent and wrinkled trees. Silvery cobwebs sway loosely among their twisting limbs like tattered curtains of the dead. A force lingers at the edge of the forest like the foul stench of a beast.



It breathes of dark magic and death...


12/17: Deal Sharing Aunt - Guest Post

Mystery surrounds the corrupted dagger of Raemoja, of course, those who created it, wouldn’t call it that.



Only the dwarves know how to “corrupt” a blade, strengthening it against things not of this world, but the dwarves did not make this dagger.




The dagger is a tool, and we cannot talk about the tool without learning about the one who crafted it...


12/19: I Am A Reader, Not A Writer - Guest Post

When Nälu was known as Talesri, there were only two dwarf clans. Klovan and Igazin, and they both spoke Tarôc...



During Stygian’s reign, the Klovan maintained a strong defense against the dwäza raids, but much of Stygian’s focus was on the Igazin...




[The Stozic's] capital city, Ta’vazi, is built right into the side of the mountain much like the ancient city of Petra in Jordan...



"I definitely found the title a perfect fit for the story. The MC, Ayianna, has had some secrets kept from her and then in turn must keep her own...



Overall, this was a good story. I really wanted to understand more about the prophecy and dagger and the role that Ayianna and her fellow companions will play, but I'll have to wait until the next book to learn more."


12/22: Mortal Moments - Guest Post

There are three distinct ethnic groups of elves in Nälu. The Esusamor, Saryhemor, and Wofsemor. They speak the common tongue of Nälu, their dialect of Zjótharyn, and most of the older generations are familiar with the ancient language of Táchil. Aside from the merfolk, they are the longest living beings in Nälu...

12/23: alwaysjoart - Guest Post

The feline shape-shifting race of Nälu: The Haruzo are split into two ethnic groups: The Plarzo in Bonzapur and the Rugazo in the mountainous region of Arashel...



Go to alwaysjoart to also listen to two songs representative of the music from Secrets Kept.


12/24: Mel’s Shelves - Review

If you enjoy fantasy, this is the beginning of a great series and I'm personally looking forward to reading the next book!



My Rating=5 Stars



12/26: Zerina Blossom - Guest Post

Across many watery miles and treacherous seas, is a land of mystery, great beauty, and wonder. Ragged mountains emerge from the depths and loom over lush, colorful gardens. Home to the glowing moonflower, healing waters, and dragons.



Here, you will find the Kaleki. The Sea-people. Otherwise known as the merfolk...



"Secrets Kept by J.L. Mbewe is a refreshingly brilliant and utterly sizzling beginning to an astounding epic adventure that emphasizes the innate desire in all of us to do what we fear the most – to truly live life to the fullest. I absolutely loved this story!"

12/29: Fictionally - Review

"I really liked the story, over all. I found it engaging enough that there were not many slow spots in it , which is good cause I read most of it in one weekend so I could have the review up by today.There's also fantastical creatures galore!"

12/30: Dalene’s Book Reviews - Review

"I really had fun reading this book. The characters were well developed and the world building was pretty good."

12/31: Grand Finale



desert-rose-3web
FREE right now on 
Amazon and Barnes & Noble!
Desert Rose
(A Tale of Nälu #1)



Secrets Kept
Secrets Kept 
by JL Mbewe
YA Fantasy
October 30th 2013 by AltWit Press


With a curse, she will build an army.

With the dagger, she will undo the last sacrifice.
But first the sorceress must find the secret keeper.


Torn from her homeland and thrust into a betrothal against her wishes, Ayianna learns her family has a deadly secret that now has her on the run. She joins forces with Kael, an embittered half-elf, and Saeed, an elderly High Guardian, to seek answers to her father’s death, the destruction of Dagmar, and the plains people’s bizarre behavior.

Ayianna discovers there is more at stake here than just her mother’s disappearance and her familial duty to her betrothed. The sorceress has cursed the plains people, and it is a race against time to release them before the sorceress resurrects an ancient evil.



Tales of Nalu

desert-rose-3web
Desert Rose
A Tale of Nälu #1

First short story published March 2013

Set thirty some years before the opening scene of book one.

Can a desert princess find love with a foreign king?

Johari lives in the shadow of her beautiful sister until a foreign king notices her, but in her haste to prove herself worthy of affection she finds herself compromised and on a difficult journey to make things right.

Dragon-Thiefweb
Dragon Thief

A Tale of Nälu #2

What if all you knew had been a lie?

The teaching of the Guardians has guided Semine’s footsteps since her infancy. When her mentor shows up with information contrary to what she’s been taught, she doubts her decision to follow in their footsteps. She must decide if there is life beyond what she has always known or embrace a new, mysterious path and reject the Guardians’ legacy.

Available at Amazon. Coming soon to Barnes and Noble.

indestructible final (436x640)
Indestructable

A Tale of Nälu #3

To what lengths would you go to the save the world?

Elothryn keeps the darkest secret of Nälu: The cursed dagger of Raemoja. A weapon powerful enough to release the greatest evil from the underworld. For generations, his family has lived without incident until now. The hunters have his scent and will stop at nothing to reclaim the dagger. Elothryn and his son flee, seeking help, but will they find it?

Available at Amazon. Coming soon to Barnes and Noble. 


NOW AVAILABLE: Tales of  Nälu (all three short stories in paperback) on Amazon!

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000026_00013]


Living life balanced between reality and dreams.

JL Mbewe - Author
Writing as J. L. Mbewe, Jennette is an author, artist, mother, wife, but not always in that order. Born and raised in Minnesota, she now braves the heat of Texas, but pines for the Northern Lights and the lakes of home every autumn. She loves trying to capture the abstract and make it concrete. She has two short stories published in The Clockwork Dragon anthology, and is busily creating worlds inhabited by all sorts of fantasy creatures and characters, all questing about and discovering true love amid lots of peril. Her debut novel Secrets Kept and her short stories set in the world of Nälu: Desert Rose, Dragon Thief, and Indestructible are now available. She is currently living her second childhood with a wonderful husband and two precious children who don’t seem to mind her eclectic collections of rocks, shells, and books, among other things.


For more information about her journey as a writer mama and all things creative please visit her at:



Tour-Wide Giveaway


Kindle Fire Prize Pack (US/CAN ONLY), which includes:
- Kindle Fire
- Chocolate truffles
- Paper backs of Secrets Kept and Tales of Nälu
- Awesome swag (key chain, bookmark, and poster)
Ends January 7, 2014





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Devil's Frost by Heidi R. Kling Cover Reveal




Every young witch looks forward to her first Solstice Stones. The pride of representing her coven against the warlocks. The rush from her first taste of dark magic.

But a few short minutes into the Stones, and Lily’s lifelong dream turns into a nightmare of pain and regret. Betrayed not once, but twice, her restraint snaps—with dire consequences. 

Lily is wracked with guilt and on the run from the powerful Congression, when her broken confidence is further shattered by an ugly secret from the past. As her options dwindle, Lily is forced into a distasteful alliance.

Will she be able to find her way back to the light? Or will darkness consume her before dawn's new day?



Devil's Frost will be releasing on January 21, 2014 by Coliloquy.
You can order Witch's Brew & The Gleaning at the following Retailer:





SEA (Putnam), a Gateway Readers Award Finalist & Northern California Book of the Year nominee, was a Summer 2010 Indie Next Pick and a Goodreads "Mover and Shaker":

BOOKLIST says, “Kling blends facts about Indonesian culture and the wake of the tsunami with a lyrical story of loss and daring to love again... Sienna’s loss, newfound courage and eventual acceptance of the changes in her life ring true in the satisfying and wholly believable first-person narrative."

VOYA says, "Kling captures the innocence and heartbreak of first romance superbly in this tender love story...this page turner evokes the harshness of disaster as well as the beauty of the young soul."

"SEA is a richly woven story as turbulent and beautiful as the sea itself, plunging us headlong into the depths of loss, devastation, compassion, and hope. A touching and romantic debut about the redemptive power of altruism and the heart's capacity for love. --Sarah Ockler, author of TWENTY BOY SUMMER

"From the first page of SEA, the reader is plunged into a world of love, loss, and hope. The heat between Sienna and Deni is mirrored in the steamy exotic setting of Indonesia...I couldn’t put this book down. Sienna is conflicted and compassionate...I truly loved this book and can't wait to recommend it to all the teenagers I know!" --L.K. Madigan, FLASH BURNOUT (William C. Morris Award winner)

WITCH'S BREW: SPELLSPINNERS 1(Coliloquy) is book one of nine in an "Active Content" new serial about estranged witches and warlocks set in a modern day beach town.


Social Media
   


Giveaway

SEXY MAGIC BASKET:
Black Orchid Perfume by Tom Ford 
L.I.L.Y Perfume by Stella McCartney 
Witch/ Warlock team bracelet
1 set of (4) Temporary Tattoos inspired by the series
1 author signed Spellspinners Bookmark
Spellspinners bundle (Books 1-3) (epub or mobi) 
5 copies of Spellspinners bundle (Books 1-3) epub or mobi 
5 signed bookmarks



Mistress of the Wind Book Blast and Giveaway with Author Michelle Diener



On Tour with Prism Book Tours

The Bookblast!!


Mistress of the Wind 300Mistress of the Wind
by Michelle Diener
New Adult/Sci-Fi Fantasy
Paperback, 342 pages
Expected publication: December 19th 2013


Bjorn needs to find a very special woman . . . 

The fate of his people, and his own life, depends on it. But when he does find her, she is nothing like he imagined, and may just harbor more secrets than he does himself.

Astrid has never taken well to commands. No matter who issues them . . . 

She's clashed her whole life with her father, and now her lover, the mysterious man who comes to her bedroom in darkness and disappears to guard his mountain by day as a bear, is finding it out the hard way. And when he's taken by his enemies, no one is prepared for Astrid's response. 

It is never wise to anger the mistress of the wind . . . 

A captivating and magical adult retelling of the fairy tale East of the Sun, West of the Moon.


Praise for Mistress of the Wind:
“Diener’s adaptation retains the familiar elements of the original, echoing both the structure and spirit of the classic, but true to form, she puts her own spin both the plot and the narrative, crafting an intricately alluring tale of self-sacrifice, steadfast devotion and enduring love.“ Flashlight Commentary

“The story is fast-paced and never boring, the world a beauty and Michelle’s writing so wonderfully detailed that I felt I was with Bjorn and Astrid on their journey.“ Book Bird Reviews

Author Michelle Diener takes this re-telling to another level. She doesn’t restrict herself to an East of the Sun, West of the moon retelling. Instead we are also given parts reminiscent of Psyche’s quest. Which just allowed for a much more richer story.  Paperback Wonderland

Mistress of the Wind

by Michelle Diener regarding her new book!

Mistress of the Wind is based on the fairy tale East of the Sun, West of the Moon. It's a fairy tale I've loved since I was a child, but it wasn't until I started seriously researching the origins and mythology of East of the Sun, West of the Moon in preparation for writing Mistress of the Wind that I discovered what a unique fairy tale it is in many respects.

Fairy tales are generally grouped into types by folklorists using the Aarne-Thompson classification system, and East of the Sun, West of the Moon is classified as AT-425A, in the 'husband' group of tales, which also includes Beauty and the Beast and Psyche and Eros.

What is unique about East of the Sun, West of the Moon, is that when the heroine goes in search of her lover, the people who help her along the way do not do so because of any action on her part. Usually in a fairy tale--in fact, almost across the board--an elderly, mysterious figure or animal will aid the hero or heroine because of an act of kindness they have shown, or because of a favor the hero / heroine has done first.

In East of the Sun, West of the Moon, the heroine is helped as if it is her due. This really sparked my interest, along with the magical flying horses that are lent to her, and the assumption by all concerned that the four winds will give the heroine their aid.

I approached the story with the question: why would this be so? Because I was writing a full-length novel off of what is, in my fairy tale collection, only 8 pages of text, I obviously had to make the story make sense. Quite often in fairy tales coincidences, strange happenings and the relationships between characters are never explained, but it is assumed the reader will accept them, even though there is no reason behind them. That obviously wouldn't work in a full-length novel. So I decided to explore all mythology relating to the wind, and came across the myth of the Wind Hag, and I just knew I had found the core of my story.

If you are surprised at the use of the Wind Hag as a powerful heroine, let me explain why the crone or hag is a powerful, rather than a pitiable or evil character. And she doesn't have to be old and ugly, either. The book Women Who Run with the Wolves by Dr Clarissa Pinkola Estes first introduced me to the idea of the hag as a force of power and self-determination. Estes looked at a number of fairy tales and myths across many cultures, at a time when the power of the feminine had a strong place in society. As the patriarchal Christian religion encroached on society across Europe, women who understood herbology, kept the (pagan) myths and legends alive and who were respected and whose opinions mattered within the social structure, were a direct threat to the new religion.

It was most certainly in the interests of the Church to demonize and undermine these women and what they stood for, and it is no coincidence that the stereotype of a witch is an old hag or crone. They certainly caught the brunt of the Inquisition's witch hunts, and again, that was no coincidence.

It felt right to weave the myth of the Wind Hag through East of the Sun, West of the Moon, even though it isn't in the original. It fit in some way that was really satisfying, and it felt empowering.

Because this is originally a Scandinavian tale, I used Norse mythology to enrich it, although I made a few of the magical creatures up, from a mish-mash of fairy tale creatures and myth.

One aspect of East of the Sun, West of the Moon which I love is that this is a tale where the heroine rescues the hero. I love how the heroine takes action, refusing to give up even in the face of impossible odds. East of the Sun, West of the Moon has one of the bravest, most proactive heroines of any fairy tale, and her journey is striking in how it can be read from a Jungian point of view.

The Jungian psychologist, Marie-Louise Von Franz, made a life's study out of fairy tales and how they relate to ego and our sense of self. I am in awe of her work. One of the points she makes about fairy tales is how they are reflections of our relationship with ourselves, and I found that true over and over again as I wrote Mistress of the Wind.

I love that the heroine cannot rescue the prince until she has travelled to all four corners of the world, and I saw that very much as an allegory for her needing to explore her strengths and come to understand her own power and worth before she could save someone else.

I wrote Mistress of the Wind continually awed and amazed by the depth and richness of the original tale, and so, while I've woven new things into the story, like the Wind Hag, Norse mythology and some of my own imagination, I also tried to remain faithful to the original tale. I wanted to respect the original, and honor it. And it was certainly a privilege to write it. I just hope I did it justice.

- Michelle Diener

Image of Michelle DienerMichelle Diener writes historical fiction. Her Susanna Horenbout & John Parker series, set in the court of Henry VIII, includes In a Treacherous Court, Keeper of the King's Secrets and In Defense of the Queen.

Michelle's other historical novels include Daughter of the Sky, The Emperor's Conspiracy and Banquet of Lies (loosely connected to The Emperor's Conspiracy).

Michelle's first fantasy novel, Mistress of the Wind, is set for a December 23, 2013, release.

Michelle was born in London, grew up in South Africa and currently lives in Australia with her husband and two children.


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International Giveaway:

$50 Amazon gift voucher 

5 copies of Mistress of the Wind, ebook or print, winner's choice.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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