Today we have the Elemental Reality Blog Tour stopping by! I recently had the opportunity to read and review Elemental Reality (Elemental #1) by Cesya MaRae Cuono
Howdy, folks! A super big thank you to Brea for allowing me to join you to promote my newly released e-book Pandora’s Box, book one in the Road to Hell series, available now at Decadent Publishing (www.decadentpublishing.com)! When writing Pandora’s Box I mixed things up a bit, sometimes crafting new, unheard of creatures from my imagination and at other times using mythical creatures with established lore behind them. The crow was one of the mythical creatures with a legend behind it.
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a crow? For me, aside from the black birds that scavenge, it was the mystical belief that they are omens of death.
In Pandora’s Box, I needed something that could deliver a riddle from a higher power about the future. So, I did a little bit of research and my focus soon centered on the crow, which is similar to the raven. It appears in mythology as a soothsayer, as a creator and cleanser and as omens of death. Okay, so I wasn’t completely wrong, but neither did I know near all of it.
Among the North America tribes the crow was considered as the guardian of the sacred law that could see not only the past, but the present and the future. Ah, just what I needed, a soothsayer that could easily be used in my story to deliver a riddle about future events.
In Celtic lore, the battle goddess Morrigan would shapeshift into either a crow or a raven and they were both seen as allies and companions.
Medieval fairytales saw the crow as birds of parental devotion and it was said that the crow led the migration of storks. Medieval Christians thought the crow was a sign of the devil because of its scavenging conduct, but it was also an icon of fidelity because it was thought that crows did not seek a new mate when its mate died. Magical properties were given to the crow as well, which included the skill to foretell the future, dismantle the past and to educate humans about how to mix humor, playfulness and love.
So, what do you think? Do you believe in the magical elements of crows? I had fun using the crow as a magical creature that shapeshifts into a beautiful woman with birdlike qualities and clothing made of feathers. To read how that turned out, scroll to the excerpt below.
Leave a comment for a chance to win a Pandora’s Box Coffee mug, but PLEASE leave your email address so I can contact you if you’re the winner!!!
Thanks for having me with you today, Brea!!
Where you can stalk me–not really!–but I would love to meet and interact with you:
Road to Hell series FB Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Road-to-Hell-series/112564408814796?ref=ts
Pandora’s Box Blurb:
What happens when your son turns homicidal overnight and your husband disappears on his way to work? Do you cower in fear or fight for your life? Madison Wescott fights against the odds. Distrustful of a God she doesn’t believe in, she finds herself face-to-face with a world she didn’t know existed and discovers her own soul is darkened with demonic connections.
Phoenix Birmingham bursts into Madison’s life in a whirlwind of sarcasm and sexual appeal. A hero for the masses–and for her jaded heart–but few will ever know the sacrifices he has made or the sacrifices to come. Discovering her entire life has been influenced by multifaceted paranormal beings, Madison is determined to defeat the apocalyptic blueprint fate has decreed, but only one man dares to challenge the supernatural forces manipulating them. Even with Phoenix’s aid, can destiny be denied? Or will demonic design prevail while they pay the crucial price with their souls?
In a small, sleepy Alabama town the battle for mankind’s liberty has begun…
Madison sat up straight and her feet plopped to the wooden floor as a crow landed on the rail. Nix set the bottle of liquor beside his foot and moved to the edge of his seat.
The crow shifted into a woman with almond-shaped eyes and long hair, both as black as a crow’s feather. She possessed a body to die for, dressed in a black cat-like-pantsuit. Well, no, that wasn’t quite accurate. The pantsuit wasn’t made of cloth, but rather a seamlessly flowing feathery substance. A glossy, black feather floated across the porch and came to rest across Madison’s bare foot.
“You’ve been found worthy of the crows,” the woman said, her voice as melodious as a bird’s warble. “Keep the feather secure, and if you ever need assistance, grip it in your hand and consider our help a one-time deal.”
“Lucky me.” Pushing out of her chair, she heard Nix rise beside her. She palmed the dagger he had given her. In the paranormal world, things could turn on a dime, and she trusted no one. Not even a shape-shifting crow. She grew weary of feeling defenseless as each new supernatural entity arrived on her doorstep. Grew restless sitting and waiting on them to come after her.
Crow shuddered like she’d seen a bird do, her feathery black hair buzzing with the movement. “I came with a message only.”
“You’re an omen of death,” Nix snarled, glaring.
Startled, Madison peeped at him, his posture alert, pistol gripped tight in his hand.
“Sometimes, yes,” Crow agreed, looking him up and down. “You’re cuter in person, Phoenix Birmingham.”
“You….” He made a face of disbelief, “You know my name?”
Crow clucked her tongue at him and swiveled her head to stare at Madison. She blinked slow, like a bird assessing its prey. “The boy has risen from the puppeteer’s hell. Evil has been dismantled from his past. His future isn’t set in stone. The choice is his. A blood-father born of Hell will test the mettle of his son again, yet the boy owns his future.”
Chills scattered across Madison’s body. “What does that mean?” She glanced at Nix, feeling more than a little paranoid.
If you wish to read more of Pandora’s Box before purchasing it, go to my website to read the first chapter for free: www.gracenmiller.com.
Here’s another six sentences from FORESHADOW, book one of the Shadow Imperium series:
Today’s “Why I Love Wednesdays . . .” is all about a favorite book couple. At the risk of repeating myself and posting massive spoilers, I’m going to tell you about Garion and Ce’Nedra from The Belgariad and The Mallorean by David Eddings.
If you’ve been following my “Why I Love Wednesdays . . .” posts, you’ll know how much I love David Eddings’ works, particularly The Belgariad and The Mallorean (in case I haven’t mentioned this before, they’re technically companion series, set in the same world and with many of the same characters, but several years apart). I’ve already expressed my love for Ce’Nedra (if you missed that post, you can find it here). Now it’s time to share about Ce’Nedra’s relationship with Garion.
Garion is the main character of The Belgariad and one of the main characters of The Mallorean. He and Ce’Nedra first meet when they are fifteen. They hate each other at first. Garion thinks Ce’Nedra is a spoiled brat (which she kind of is) and Ce’Nedra thinks Garion is an uneducated peasant (which he basically is). They have screaming fights and she treats him as her servant. They eventually begin to become friends when Ce’Nedra takes it upon herself to teach Garion how to read. Garion’s aunt, Polgara, cautions Ce’Nedra against playing with Garion’s emotions, although Ce’Nedra insists that she feels nothing for him.
Ce’Nedra finally realizes her feelings for Garion when he goes away for a time to retrieve a magical object that’s been stolen. She’s been left behind and she finds herself missing him. When he returns, she goes into a fit of jealousy when she sees him with another girl (who is in fact his cousin).
When they reach the end of their quest, Garion and Ce’Nedra are both surprised when Garion is revealed to be the long-lost Rivan king. Ce’Nedra catches the implication of this, although Garion doesn’t. There has been a long-standing treaty that one day an Imperial Princess of Tolnedra will marry the Rivan king. This means that they have to get married.
It isn’t until Garion has to leave on a dangerous quest to kill an evil god that Ce’Nedra finally decides that she wants to marry him. She leads an army to distract the disciples of the evil god to help insure Garion’s safety.
The two are eventually married at the end of The Belgariad series. The Mallorean series begins with the abduction of their child. Garion, Ce’Nedra and many others must go on another quest to retrieve the child. Throughout it all, Garion basically has to keep Ce’Nedra sane. After all, what mother wouldn’t go crazy if someone kidnapped their son?
Through all ten books of the two series, I enjoyed the development of Garion and Ce’Nedra’s relationship. They may fight, they may drive each other crazy, but they always manage to work it out. It’s funny what lessons we can take from books sometimes.
Today we have a guest on the blog! Mary Duke is visiting with us to talk about Solstice Publishing, where she is the Marketing Director.