Flight of the Raven Blog Tour


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Today I have the pleasure of spotlighting Morgan Busse’s The Ravenwood Saga. I loved both of the currently released books in the series, and I can’t wait for book 3!

Make sure you read all the way until the end for a giveaway and a sale.

Flight of the Raven
(The Ravenwood Saga #2)
By Morgan L. Busse
Christian Fantasy
Paperback & ebook, 352 Pages
April 30th 2019 by Bethany House Publishers

Selene Ravenwood, once the heir to House Ravenwood, is now an exile. On the run and free of her family’s destiny, Selene hopes to find the real reason her family was given the gift of dreamwalking. But first she must adapt to her new life as wife to Lord Damien Maris, the man she was originally assigned to kill.

While adjusting to her marriage and her home in the north, her power over dreams begins to grow. As the strongest dreamwalker to exist in ages, her expanding power attracts not only nightmares but the attention of the Dark Lady herself.

With a war looming on the horizon and a wicked being after her gift, Selene is faced with a choice: embrace the Dark Lady’s offer, or search out the one who gave her the gift of dreamwalking. One path offers power, the other offers freedom. But time is running out, and soon her choice will be made for her.

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My Review:

I pre-ordered the audiobook and literally set aside the audiobook I was listening to so I could jump into this one right away. After the sort of cliff hanger ending of the last book, I’ve been impatiently counting down to this book.

This book was a bit different than what I was expecting, yet in some ways it was exactly what I was expecting. It had less action than the last book. Really only the ending had anything like the danger and tense scenes of the first book. I was expecting a lot of Damien and Selene falling in love and growing as people, and that’s exactly what I got and it was really well done and sweet and adorable.

Even though this book was in many ways slower than the first book, I still couldn’t stop listening. The struggle inside Selene is very compelling and Amara’s struggles were a good parallel.

There were a few doctrinal things I didn’t agree with, but overall I appreciated the Christian aspect of the book.

The ending was the best part of the whole book. Tense and heart-wrenching and totally sets up a dramatic finale in the third book. I’m already starting a countdown to the release of book 3

Other Books in the Series

Mark of the Raven
(The Ravenwood Saga #1)
By Morgan L. Busse
Christian Fantasy
Paperback & ebook, 352 Pages
November 6th 2018 by Bethany House Publishers

Lady Selene is the heir to the Great House of Ravenwood and the secret family gift of dreamwalking. As a dreamwalker, she can enter a person’s dreams and manipulate their greatest fears or desires. For the last hundred years, the Ravenwood women have used their gift of dreaming for hire to gather information or to assassinate.

As she discovers her family’s dark secret, Selene is torn between upholding her family’s legacy–a legacy that supports her people–or seeking the true reason behind her family’s gift.

Her dilemma comes to a head when she is tasked with assassinating the one man who can bring peace to the nations, but who will also bring about the downfall of her own house.

One path holds glory and power, and will solidify her position as Lady of Ravenwood. The other path holds shame and execution. Which will she choose? And is she willing to pay the price for the path chosen?

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My Review:

This book is amazing! Of course, I knew it would be since I’ve adored every single novel this author has ever written!

This one started off slow. But the sort of slow where the plot and worldbuilding are unfolding like a flower, one petal at a time. Just at the moment when I wasn’t sure where this was going, stuff started happening, deceptions upon deceptions and betrayals and plots and planned assassinations, and everything just got tense and crazy.

The worldbuilding is well done. Each of the Houses had their own personalities, and the author does a great job of writing clearly during the scenes where multiple houses are together and a great number of characters are introduced so that even someone like me who struggles with names didn’t get confused.

Damien was my favorite character from the moment he stepped on the page. His introduction in this book is simply epic. Gave me chills. I still think one scene with him early on is my favorite in the whole book for how spine-chillingly awesome it is.

Selene was also a really, well-done character. It would’ve been too easy for her to feel whiny or too passive, but the author does a great job of making the reader root for her.

This is a great start to this new series, and now I am even more eager for book two!

Also, I read most of this book via audiobook, and the audiobook version is well done. The narrator does a really good job!

About the Author

Morgan L. Busse is a writer by day and a mother by night. She is the author of the Follower of the Word series and the steampunk series The Soul Chronicles. She is a Christy and INSPY Award finalist and won the Carol Award in 2018 for best in Christian speculative fiction. During her spare time she enjoys playing games, taking long walks, and dreaming about her next novel.

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Tour Schedule

Tour Giveaway

1 winner will receive print copies of Mark of the Raven, Flight of the Raven, and a $20 Amazon gift card
2 winner winners will receive print copies of Mark of the Raven and Flight of the Raven
– US only
– Ends June 7, 2019

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Sign up for Cover Reveal, News, & More

This is going to be a rather eclectic blog post. It has been far too long since I’ve posted, and things have begun to pile up.

In April, I pushed really hard to finish the first draft of Midnight’s Curse, the sequel to Dagger’s Sleep. I’m happy to say I finished it! Even if it took writing 55k words in 32 days. Social media and posting on here took a back seat to writing all the words.

CampNaNoWriMo Stats

Since I finished the first draft and have been lining up all the stuff to release the book, it is time to do a cover reveal and announce a release date. Yay!

 Fill out the form below to join the cover reveal for Midnight’s Curse!

Why help with the cover reveal?

  • It helps an author launch a book on the right foot.
  • You get to see both the shiny new cover and the release date before anyone else.
  • You get this author’s sincere gratitude for being an awesome person. If I could give you all maple sugar cookies, I would.

The cover reveal is going to take place on May 17. That’s less than 2 weeks away. I know I’m cutting the time short, but life was too crazy for me to arrange this before now.

You don’t need to have a blog to participate. Any social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc). will work.

On that weekend, the preorder for Midnight’s Curse will go live on Amazon, and the Kindle version of Dagger’s Sleep is going to be on sale for $.99. So there will be a lot to celebrate!

Here’s the form for the Cover Reveal

I’m so excited to reveal this cover to all of you! Savannah Jezowski of Dragonpress Designs did this cover, and it’s amazing. She’s the same person who designed the new cover for Dagger’s Sleep, and as amazing as that cover is, I think the one for Midnight’s Curse is even more stunning.

RealmAward_2inchSpeaking of Dagger’s Sleep, it was announced a couple of weeks ago that Dagger’s Sleep is a finalist for a Realm Award for the Fantasy category. It is such an honor to see Dagger’s Sleep alongside all the other amazing finalists. You can see a full list of the finalists here.

 


Friend Features

Several books by author friends and acquaintances have released in the past couple of weeks, and I wanted to highlight a few here.

Flight of the RavenFlight of the Raven by Morgan Busse released on April 30. It is book 2 in her Ravenwood Saga and continues the story of Selene and Damien. It is Christian fantasy published by Bethany House.

I’m not going to say tons about it now since I’ll be posting about it (well, fangirling about it) as part of the blog tour at the end of May. But you can find my review here on Goodreads and here is the link to the book on Amazon.

I’ve enjoyed all of this author’s books and I can’t wait for book 3 in this series to release!

The Lady and the Wish by J.M. Stengl released on April 25. It is book 4 in the Faraway The Lady and the WishCastle series and is a retelling of the King Thrushbeard fairy tale. All of the Faraway Castle books are adorable fairy tale retellings, and I can’t wait for the next book in this series! If you have read Dagger’s Sleep or enjoy books like K.M. Shea’s Timeless Fairy Tale series, then you will want to pick up the Faraway Castle series.

Besides, isn’t that cover simply gorgeous?

Here is the link to find the book on Amazon and here is the link to my review on Goodreads.

RomanovFinally, today is the release day for Romanov by Nadine Brandes. It is a historical fantasy/retelling of Anastasia, and I’ve been dying to get my hands on it from the moment I knew she was writing this book. I haven’t started reading it yet, but I’m sure it is going to be as amazing as all her other books!

Here’s the link for the book on Amazon.

 

Congratulations to all of these authors on their recent releases!

Do you know of any other new releases that you would like to tell everyone about? Feel free to leave your recommendations in the comments.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for the cover reveal and release date announcement for Midnight’s Curse. I’m really excited to share this book with you!

Contest Results & Book Signing Memories

I could be mean and wait until the end of this post to announce the winners of the Name That Character contest. But, I’m not.

You all came up with such great names! It was sooooo hard to choose! 33 different people submitted names! Wow!

General GENERALS NAME shall henceforth be known as General Uriah Stewart. 

Congratulations to Emily Drown for the name Uriah and Addyson Huneke for the name Stewart.

Honorable mentions are Chloe L. for the names Tavish and McLain, and C.B. Cook for the name McGowan.

HE WHO MUST BE NAMED shall henceforth be known as Ian McCrae. 

Congratulations to Amy K. for the name Ian (she also came up with the name Tavish) and to Valerie S. for the name McCrae.

Honorable mentions are Jesseca Wheaton for the name Dunn and Josie Ophoff and Sierra Faith, who both came up with the name Jotham.

Congrats to all the honorable mentions and winners! And thank you everyone who entered! I’m definitely keeping this list of names, so you never know when I might use it again.


 

This past Saturday, I went to Indiana for a book signing, meet & greet, and book talk. About 20 people, both kids and adults, showed up. I had a great time chatting with everyone. I even managed to sound somewhat intelligent while answering questions. I doubt any of the kids getting their books signed realized that I was just as terrified to talk to them as they were to talk to me.

One of the questions I was asked was what books to I recommend. I should’ve been prepared, but I wasn’t completely. So here’s a better list:

My top 7 recommended Christian YA books

  • The Ilyon Chronicles by Jaye L. Knight. So far, 2 books and a novella are out, and book 3 releases in May. I already had the chance to beta-read it, and it’s amazing. 🙂
    • Genre: fantasy
    • Magic: None
    • Spiritual Content: Very well done and doctrinal sound. The Christian aspects are not so much allegory as a mirror of our own world.
    • Sexual Content: None besides a few hints at what men can do to vulnerable young girls. It is tastefully dealt with.
    • Violence: Some fight scenes. A few executions. Mild torture. Nothing above PG13 level violence.
  • The Makilien Trilogy by Molly Evangeline. This is actually the earlier pen name of Jaye L. Knight. This trilogy has more of an allegorical, basic good vs. evil feel to it.
    • Genre: fantasy
    • Magic: None
    • Spiritual Content: Well done. Mostly focuses on belief in God and trusting God through hard times.
    • Sexual Content: None
    • Violence: Some fight scenes and large scale battles. Mild torture. Nothing about PG13 level, though most of it isn’t above PG.
  • Out of Time series by Nadine Brandes. The first two books are out and the third book releases in October. I can’t wait. 🙂
    • Genre: dystopian
    • Magic: none
    • Spiritual Content: Well done. Focuses on pursuing God with the time you’ve been given and finding peace in God.
    • Sexual Content: Nothing besides a kiss, some mentions of attraction between a girl and boy, and one childbirth scene (tastefully dealt with).
    • Violence: This is a very intense book. The author recommends 14 and up, depending on the maturity of the reader. There are some maiming, deaths, intense action scenes, explosions, etc. Still, nothing is too graphic and sticks in the PG14 level.
  • Follower of the Word series by Morgan Busse.
    • Genre: fantasy
    • Magic: Yes
    • Spiritual Content: Pretty well done. The spiritual aspect is very much an allegory. I might not agree with everything, but the allegory really helped me think about the nature of Christ’s sacrifice.
    • Sexual Content: a clean PG13 level. One character is sold as a female slave and given to a guest for “entertainment” (but nothing happens). Past, impure actions are mentioned. It is all tastefully done.
    • Violence: PG13 level violence. Some battle scenes and violence like that.
  • The Bailey Baxter series by Kim Moss. A sweet, contemporary series that deals with the problems of a young girl growing up in a small town.
    • Genre: contemporary
    • Spiritual Content: pretty well done. There isn’t much spiritual aspect in the first book, but as the main character grows in her faith, the spiritual content of the books grow as well.
    • Sexual Content: some kissing. The fourth book has a few more mature themes since the main character is now graduating high school, but it is still clean and very tastefully done.
    • Violence: Very little.
  • Legends of the Woodlands by Angie Brashear. An allegorical fantasy series.
    • Genre: fantasy
    • Magic: Yes
    • Spiritual Content: fairly well done. It is very allegorical, so sometimes the spiritual part can be difficult to detect in the story part, and I don’t always agree with all the spiritual aspect part, but it is still a very encouraging and uplifting series.
    • Sexual Content: Clean. Some kissing. A lot of attraction between characters. This series is heavy on the romance part, though the romance is clean.
    • Violence: PG13. Some battles scenes and executions.
  • Tales of Goldstone Wood by Anne Elisabeth Stengl. A very dense, old-style fantasy-allegory.
    • Genre: fantasy
    • Magic: Yes
    • Spiritual Content: Well done. It is the type of series where each time I read it, I get more out of it. It is allegorical, so sometimes the the spiritual part can be hard to detect from the fantasy part.
    • Sexual Content: None
    • Violence: Some violence, but not much.

There are many more, but perhaps I’ll have to save those for another blog post. 🙂

Fun Fiction Friday – Follower of the Word series

I actually finished Morgan Busse’s Follower of the Word series a while ago but haven’t had the chance to spotlight it here on my blog yet.

Many of you in the Christian fantasy community have probably already read this series, since it released over a period of a number of years. I was actually kind of glad I didn’t stumble onto this series until late last year because I only had a few agonizing months to wait for the third book. For those of you who haven’t read it yet, you’re privileged that you can read the entire series without a wait! (Because trust me, you won’t want to wait!)

My Recommendation

If you’d been following my blog for a while, you’ll know I’m a big fan of Christian fantasy, and this series is Christian fantasy at its finest. The characters are all well-developed and the multiple POVs do not get confusing. I loved all the characters so much that I had a hard time picking a favorite. Once of the main characters is a reforming assassin, and all of you know how I like stories with assassins in them! 😉

There are two things that especially impressed me about this series:

1. Even the established Followers of the Word have struggles. Too many Christian books make it seem like things instantly get easy once a person follows Christ. That isn’t the case in real life, and it certainly isn’t the case in the Follower of the Word series. In fact from an earthly standpoint, things get a lot worse for the characters. Each character pretty much is called on to give up everything they hold dear to follow the Word. Things appear really dark. Faith is tested to the breaking point. Characters are forced to make choices they never thought they’d have the strength to make. Yet, the Word is still there for them, giving them the strength they need.

2. It has one of the best representations of Christ I’ve read. Representing Christ in fiction is extremely difficult. How does an author capture a glimpse of God on the page? C.S. Lewis’s representation of Christ in Aslan is probably the best I’ve ever read because somehow Aslan captures friendship and awe-inspiring power. The Word in the Follower of the Word series is a close second. The Word is a friend yet remains powerful and mysterious. The representation of how He bears our guilt really made me think about what Christ did to pay for my sins.

I highly recommend this series!

About the Books:

Book 1: Daughter of Light

As the Shadonae rise in the west and war threatens the north, a young woman discovers she is not human . . .

Rowen Mar finds a strange mark on her hand, and she is banished from her village as a witch. She covers the mark with a leather glove and seeks sanctuary in the White City. She lives in fear that if she touches another person, the power inside her will trigger again, a terrifying power that allows her to see the darkness inside the human heart . . .

But the mark is a summons, and those called cannot hide forever. For the salvation of her people lies within her hand.

Book 2: Son of Truth

The war in the north is over, but the war for all the Lands has just begun. As the Shadonae solidify their hold on the city of Thyra, Rowen Mar, the last Eldaran and savior of the White City, awakens to find herself hunted by those she has saved.

Meanwhile, the assassin Caleb Tala finds himself in the presence of the Word. The time of reckoning has come, and he must pay the price for all the lives he has taken. But in his moment of judgment, Caleb is given a second chance to change his life.

These two hold the power to save the Lands from the Shadonae. One must escape slavery, and one must choose to forsake everything before the world is consumed in darkness.

Book 3: Heir of Hope

The great city of Thyra has fallen and shadows spread across the land. Rowen Mar, the last Truthsayer, is taken before the Shadonae. But the Shadonae are not who she thought they were, and now they want to claim her as their own.

Caleb Tala, former assassin and prince, is now a Guardian of mankind. Exiled from his country, Caleb wanders the desert in search of his mother’s past and clues to who he is.

These are the last days of the Eldaran race. Rowen and Caleb must find their way along the dark path set before them by their ancestors: to heal what was wounded and love where hatred grows. But the road is narrow and the darkness beckons. If either of them fails, all will be lost…

And the human race will be no more.

About the author:

Morgan L. BusseI am a wife, mother, and author. I write Christian fantasy for adult market. My work is published with Enclave Publishing, the premier publishing company for Christian fantasy and science fiction.

Have you read the Follower of the Word series yet?