Category: Folklore and Mythology

Author Interview | Conversing with debut novelist, Julie Reece on behalf of her #Month9Books #YALit novel “The Artisans”!

Posted Wednesday, 20 May, 2015 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

Conversations with the Bookish badge created by Jorie in Canva

I honestly have been properly smitten with the book releases coming out of Month9Books, which is quite easy to understand if you follow the category threads for my book showcases & guest author features highlighting the new releases coming out of this Indie Publisher! When it comes to reading Gothic Literature, this is a topic I’ve explored on my blog as it has a tendency to be a genre I am quite intrigued by and readily find myself seeking out authors who write either Southern Gothic or Traditional Gothic Lit stories! And, of course, there is the realisation that I am still attempting to dig back inside Jane Eyre after picking it up for the first time in September 2013! One day. One day I shall find myself happily entrenched and will not re-emerge until I know how it all ends as it was originally written!

Late last year, I came across Sarah E. Boucher’s fairy-tale style of story-telling where she took on the legend, lore, and essence behind Beauty and the Beast. Becoming introduced to this style, I started to notice how many times I was being drawn forward into modern writer’s take on the classic fairy-tale story by re-aligning it inside their own worlds of fantasy and/or taking the lesser travelled historical fiction route. I have believed the key elements inside Beauty and the Beast, have always been arching back into the Gothic sub-genre sections due to it’s broodingly dark tone hanging over the Beast and the castle itself.

Part of the appeal for me to seek out these modern variants on the classics, is a step forward into reading fairy-tales as a previous #ChocLitSaturday chat already proved that more than two of us in our huckleberry circle of chatters are not meant to read the originals due to how dark and how horridly horrific they read on the page! I am finding enjoyment in seeing a new thread of chapters which pull back the dark horror side of the fairy-tale segments and instead fuse our imaginations into a story we can honestly enjoy reading without being on pins on what our eyes will drink in.

This is how I came to approach a yearning to read The Artisans and why I requested to be placed on the tour to host the author in an interview, such as the one your about to read below! I know each time I catch sight of a Month9Books title I dearly want to read, I will be hosting the author for a conversation or a guest post in lieu of reading the book(s) in print editions. It is my hope after six months from publication, I can start to query the books out of inter-library loan. I find I have quite a good bit of luck in this regard, as I recently queued up another Young Adult release I had yearned to read last year (not Month9Books) which was Snow Like Ashes. Until then, the Month9Books & Swoon Romance novels I wish to read in the near future will be populating my Riffle Lists!

As an aside, I was attempting to participate in the Book Blitz for this novel last week, but due to a variety of different reasons not worth mentioning I lost the hours to do so. However, in the end, it worked out for the best as I hadn’t realised there were ‘required bits to include’ as I was going to write a bit more about the book itself and why it entranced me to read it whilst giving the First Chapter a bit of a go too.

I received a copy of the ePub version of this novel (as this is a new compliment to hosting Month9Books blog tours), but as mentioned several times on my blog, I can only read novels in their full length in print. Therefore, the best I can do is settle inside the opening bits of the First Chapter or even a smaller portion of that if it is a chapter on the longer end of the spectrum. I consider these little ‘tastes’ prior to reading the novels in full. To understand what I mean, you might want to visit how I expressed my appreciation for another Fantasy novel for Middle Grade readers based on a Chapter Sampler. I will be separating my thoughts on behalf of The Artisans from this interview and publishing them (hopefully) lateron in the day.

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The Artisans by Julie ReeceBook Synopsis:

They say death can be beautiful. But after the death of her mother, seventeen-year-old Raven Weathersby gives up her dream of becoming a fashion designer, barely surviving life in the South Carolina lowlands.

To make ends meet, Raven works after school as a seamstress creating stunning works of fashion that often rival the great names of the day.

Instead of making things easier on the high school senior, her stepdad’s drinking leads to a run in with the highly reclusive heir to the Maddox family fortune, Gideon Maddox.

But Raven’s stepdad’s drying out and in no condition to attend the meeting with Maddox. So Raven volunteers to take his place and offers to repay the debt in order to keep the only father she’s ever known out of jail, or worse.

Gideon Maddox agrees, outlining an outrageous demand: Raven must live in his home for a year while she designs for Maddox Industries’ clothing line, signing over her creative rights.

Her handsome young captor is arrogant and infuriating to the nth degree, and Raven can’t imagine working for him, let alone sharing the same space for more than five minutes.

But nothing is ever as it seems. Is Gideon Maddox the monster the world believes him to be? And can he stand to let the young seamstress see him as he really is?

Published By: Month9Books (@Month9Books)

on 12th of May, 2015

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook | Public Library | Add to Riffle

Converse on Twitter via:

#TheArtisans & #YALit OR #Month9Books

Read More


Posted Wednesday, 20 May, 2015 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Spotlight of E-Book (ahead of POD/print edition), Chapter by Chapter Blog Tours, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Good vs. Evil, Gothic Literature, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Inspired By Author OR Book, Month9Books, Re-Told Tales, Stories on the Rise, Urban Fantasy, YA Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction

Month9Books Friday Reveal | “Joshua and the Lightning Road” by Donna Galanti #YALit

Posted Saturday, 16 May, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Month9Books Friday Reveal Team by Chapter by Chapter Blog Tours

Last Autumn, I had the happenstance to stumble across an Indie Pub of Children’s Lit focused on #MGLit and #YALit respectively, as well as an emerging new market for Romances set within YA and NA categories of interest (i.e. Swoon Romance). It was always my intention to participate more often in their Friday Reveals inasmuch as their blog tours, however, it is the latter I’ve been able to maintain with a bit more frequency than the Reveals!
Unfortunately for me, the hours dart off too quickly for the half dozen reveals I wanted to participate on, as the others I take a pass if the story itself isn’t one that I would read. I like to feature emerging new authors and the stories that re-invent genres and/or take established areas of literature to new heights of where fiction can enchant as much as educate the reader whose imagination is hungry for thought-provoking stories.
As it were, a lightning storm caused a few tech issues today, and this post is coming a bit later than planned – but as it was in-progress I decided late is better than never! I’m on the blog tour for this novel, and smiled when I saw the materials come in yesterday for today’s *big!* Reveal. Now, without further adieu, let’s get the bookish delights of joy hoppin’! Whilst acknowledging the ‘irony’ of how lightning played a role in my post being published!

Joshua and the Lightning Road by Donna Galanti

Published By: Month9Books (@Month9Books)

on 5th of May, 2015

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook | Public Library | Add to Riffle

Converse on Twitter via:

#JoshuaAndTheLightningRoad,#MGLit or #JuvenileFiction

#M9BFridayReveals, & #Month9Books

Read More


Posted Saturday, 16 May, 2015 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Cover | Notation on Design, Book Spotlight of E-Book (ahead of POD/print edition), Book Trailer, Bookish Films, Chapter by Chapter Blog Tours, Coming-Of Age, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Good vs. Evil, Illustrations for Stories, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Month9Books, Science Fantasy, Stories on the Rise

Stories in the Spotlight | The “Imago Chronicle series” by Lorna Suzuki #Histfic translated into a world of #EpicFantasy (by #CanLit author!)

Posted Wednesday, 4 February, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments


An unexpected encounter after #IndieChat with an Indie Novelist whose book series has been pitched and accepted into motion picture adaptation, led me on a bit of an unexpected foray into a series that is both challenging (as it is outside my comfort levels on one score) as it is empowering (as it is told from the point of view of a female warrior); thus I stumbled into the world of “Imago” by Lorna Suzuki.

Acquired Samplers By:

Chapter Samplers for her Imago Novels provided for free download by the author, Lorna Suzuki via her Smashwords Author’s Page. The samplers are complimentary of the author, Ms. Suzuki to encourage readers to become familiar with her writing style, character, and the breadth of where her fantasy novels will lead a reader to journey ahead of purchase. I was not obligated to post a review nor share my opinions of the chapter samplers I downloaded; as I elected to do this for my own edification. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

Why my curiosity was piqued: 

When I noted the series was referred to as being similar in style and voice as “Lord of the Rings” I knew it was quite the epic story; a High Fantasy with a compelling arc of narrative and driven by character. Character driven stories are my absolute delight to read, however, being that the lead protagonist is a warrior I was quite prepared to encounter a woman with an arduous past rife with potentially intense trauma and recovery; psychologically speaking, I knew most characters writ inside stories of this nature have an uphill climb to recover from what they were afflicted by in their lives.

Mind you the mash-up of saying this was a LOTR + 300 equates out to The Last Samurai; half of me wondered what honestly appealed to me personally as I would run in the complete opposite direction of the 300 film series even if I happily watched the first three Lord of the Rings per release month! (including a *midnight!* release!) There were sequences within the Trilogy (LOTR) films that were a bit mind-numbing (i.e. the battle scenes, for starters) but it was the overall journey of the characters that left me speechless and hungry for each new installment. My heart shattered at the conclusion, as despite knowing where Frodo and Gandalf would end their journey, it still uncorked my emotional heart’s ability to spilt out tears as the credits rolled.

No, what I think drew me to becoming curious about this series was the author’s approach to inspire a reader’s attention, which quite ironically has left her in a sea of controversial feedback! ?? I seriously do not understand the reading public at times. I am a firm believer in ‘more information upfront’ when it comes to stories and the contents of novels. A quick blurb or a shorter showcase (a traditional book review) isn’t going to sway me one way or another because the bones of the story are left to your imagination; that’s a dicey slope! How do you know if you are going to soak inside the story and/or appreciate the tone of the writer’s voice? What if the undertone is underlit too dark? What if there isn’t enough light to hold you into their vision?

I often lament IRL (and as the occasion arises virtually) the reason I was drawn to being a book blogger is because I wanted to blog my heart out about the stories that soak inside my imagination. I want to write down the bones and flesh out the pulse of what inspired me to ‘stay within’ the writer’s world. To cultivate an open conversation about what moved me, what staid with me, but most of all, how I was left impressed by the characters, the arc of the character’s journey, and what was left within me once the story was put down. (or you could read what I said on my Introduction Post!)

If something takes me ‘out of the story’ or if the pace and/or flow of the narrative itself is disrupted by an oppressively heavy amount of vulgarity (read my Review Policy) or there are choices where the level of (graphic) violence sickens me to my stomach rather than curates a plausible reason for inclusion (clarified: violence in moderation for sake of action/trauma/plot point/back-story etc; not explicit for explicitness sake!); then I will equally be as open about these ruminations as I am gushing about why the story left me with pieces of it’s essence firmly etched into my memory.

Like most readers, I have my own barometer — I have stumbled across stories that on the surface contradict what I wrote inside my Review Policy; as there are ‘exceptions’ to this rule of mine, as most will find they have their own exceptions to the general advisory of which stories they will accept whilst reading and which stories they cannot read, irregardless of the story’s best intentions to capture your interest. I attempt to keep an open-mind on which stories alight on my path, either due to the ‘timing’ of their discovery and/or the storyline itself; there are numerous inter-connections between one story to the next, to see the path of our reading lives intersecting with our path at a moment where a story was meant to be read or put down for another time. It is a mindfulness to become aware of stories giving us this tangible connection to the world’s creative conscience inasmuch as the art of the craft behind how the stories are written and revealed to us. Read More


Posted Wednesday, 4 February, 2015 by jorielov in Book Spotlight of E-Book (ahead of POD/print edition), Bookish Discussions, Bookish Films, Canadian Literature, Cliffhanger Ending, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Domestic Violence, Elves & the Elven, Equality In Literature, Fantasy Fiction, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Folklore and Mythology, Heroic Fantasy, High Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Inspiring Video Related to Content, Light vs Dark, Lyrical Quotations, Martial Art History, Methodology of Writing Science Fiction & Fantasy, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Psychological Abuse, Realistic Fiction, Sampler Chapters &/or Excerpt of Novel, Self-Published Author, Sudden Absence of Parent, Supernatural Creatures & Beings, Supernatural Fiction, Suspense, The Deep South, Trauma | Abuse & Recovery, Writing Style & Voice

Blog Book Tour | “The Savage Fortress” (Book 1: the Ash Mistry series) by Sarwat Chadda an adventurous #MGLit rooted in the mythology and culture of India

Posted Friday, 12 December, 2014 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Parajunkee Designs

The Ash Mistry series by Sarwat Chadda:

 Ash Mistry and the Savage Fortress (Book 1)

Ash Mistry and the City of Death (Book 2)

Ash Mistry and the World of Darkness (Book 3)

Published by: Arthur A. Levine Books an imprint of Scholastic (@Scholastic)

Available Formats: Paperback, Audiobook, and Ebook

Converse via Twitter: #AshMistry, #sarwatchadda, & #TheSavageFortress

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Acquired Book By: I was originally going to make my debut hosting for Diverse Book Tours with the Pig Park Blog Tour, however due to a complication my tour stop was cancelled. I am still going to be reading “Pig Park” and am hopeful I can still share the interview I had given with the author. However, this particular blog tour caught my attention immediately due to the fact it was rooted in mythology and the culture of India! I was selected to be on the tour and what was special about this blog tour is how the tour coordinators gifted seven hosts with a complimentary copy of the book “The Savage Fortress”. We were not obligated to post a review on the blog tour itself but were asked to express what drew our attention to the novel. I did not realise this initially which is why when I agreed to host the tour I accepted the book in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

Happily this marks my first blog tour as a hostess for Diverse Book Tours, a feat in of itself which is my continuing celebration of diversity and equality in literature. I joined the national campaign for #WeNeedDiverseBooks since it’s inception six months ago, and I have continued to show my support with tweeting about the diversity and/or equality I find in the stories I am reading. One step further is I secured permission to keep the badge in my sidebar before it became popular to do so, as much as I happily placed the Twibbon on my Twitter Profile. It is a cause knitted dear to my heart and if you click on the category “Equality in Lit” in my cloud or below this book review, you will be lead through all the posts which parallel on the topic.

In the New Year or shortly before I am looking forward to seeing the announcement of an idea Janet Ursel (@JanetUrsel) put together for all of us to participate in as it celebrates our passion for reading literature which not only gives us empathy for differences but a passion for reading a diverse array of stories. As 2015 comes into focus, you will be finding me blogging more about stories which champion the reason we have the national campaign as I have always been drawn to these stories myself! I simply have a lot to share and quite happily have a growing community of bookish souls who agree with me!

Inspired to Read:

It might not be widely known amongst my friends, but I have a particular interest in The Mummy films as I happen to adore mythological story arcs which curate an adventure for the characters! The films deal with Ancient Egypt and are a great example of how you can combine live-action with CGI effects and never feel as if the two were used too much or too little! I love the balance but I also loved how the series of three films pushed my envelope of what I consider ‘adventure’ and what technically the rest of the world considers ‘horror’! Laughs. For me, they were a brilliant psychological suspense motion picture trilogy with the key advantage of giving me just enough suspense and wicked adventure!

My reading life runs concurrent to my film life on the level that I am always quite open to seeking out stories which implore me to read them; even if I believe at the jumpstart of finding them they very well could be ‘a challenge’! When I devoured the information about the Ash Mistry series on the author’s website and then re-read the book synopsis for The Savage Fortress for a third time, my gut instinct told me I was going to be ‘okay’ reading this because how seriously intense could it get for a Middle Grade novel? Right? Says the book blogger who was afraid of the spiders in the Harry Potter films! Laughs.

The Cooper Kids Adventure series is one of the best bookish joys of my childhood because I was able to tag-along with an archaeologist (yes, I positively considered becoming one in real-life!) and go on these epic adventures with him! I loved the historical aspects of the series, and who even knew they continued it past the initial books I originally had read? It is on my long term list of bookish goals to find copies of the missing books I do not have as I would very much like to find out what happens! This is a clue that I am a booklover through and through, as I do not oft let go of a book even if I cannot read it as quickly as I would prefer! I am the same person who spent a decade chasing down used copies of a favourite YA series (the Cassandra mysteries – if you know what this refers too, do leave me a comment!) and last year I finally sorted out the missing two novels in sequence past The Purple Door!

I had a good feeling about The Savage Fortress – even if part of me was telling my head how much I can get freaked out about certain things, my heart was telling me ‘you can read this! your going to love it!’ – thus started my bookish journey towards soaking inside the first novel of the Ash Mistry series! And, yet I have only disclosed half of my reason to read it! You see, I have had a dearly beloved appreciation and passion for the art, culture, and food of India! I spoke about this interest of mine whilst I blogged my ruminations on Losing Touch. I have mentioned at times I enjoy reading about World Religions but I am unsure if I mentioned this includes Hinduism and Buddhism? For all of these reasons I was wicked happy seeing this blog tour pop up as it truly felt like an unexpected gift of joy had alighted in my life! Read More


Posted Friday, 12 December, 2014 by jorielov in Action & Adventure Fiction, Ancient Civilisation, Animals in Fiction & Non-Fiction, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Trailer, Bookish Films, Brothers and Sisters, Children's Literature, Content Note, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Diverse Book Tours, Equality In Literature, Excessive Violence in Literature, Fantasy Fiction, Fly in the Ointment, Folklore and Mythology, India, Inspiring Video Related to Content, Juvenile Fiction, Literature for Boys, Literature of India, Middle Grade Novel, Siblings