Here’s the copy from the front flap:
In Masks, the first novel in The Masks of Aygrima, Mara Holdfast’s life changed forever. As the daughter of the Autarch’s Master Maskmaker, she had a clearly defined future: working with her father to make the Masks that must be worn by all adults–Masks imbued with a magic that would reveal any treasonous thought about the ruling Autarch. But when her own Mask cracked and fell to pieces during her Masking ceremony, Mara was exiled from everything she once knew. Rescued by an underground rebel group known as the unMasked Army, Mara was recruited to their cause when she learned the shocking truth about the Autarch’s reign. In a moment of crisis, Mara drew upon a volatile magical talent neither she nor her allies could understand or control.
In Shadows, Mara faces staggering new challenges as she struggles to master her terrifying, almost addictive ability to use all types of magic–and to rip magic from those around her to fuel her power.
When Chell, a young man from across the sea, is shipwrecked and washed ashore outside the rebels’ hidden base, it signals the first contact in centuries with the world beyond the borders of the Autarchy of Aygrima. But whether Chell and his people will help the unMasked Army or betray them to the Autarch is very much in question. His arrival, and Mara’s own need for answers that can only be found in the capital city of Tamita, sparks a covert mission to the seat of the Autarch’s power. It is there that an act of unspeakable brutality tips Mara dangerously close to madness…and in the midst of a desperate and bloody battle, she discovers just how horrifying her power can be…
Coteau Books has a great website with pages for all of their books…and the page for Book 2 of my YA fantasy series The Shards of Excalibur, Twist of the Blade, is now live! You can download a high-res version of the cover art and pre-order the print or ebook version right from that page.
Here’s the description:
Having saved the first Shard of the sword Excalibur from internet mogul Rex Major (aka Merlin), Ariane and Wally are on the lookout for the second. Wally’s worried that the power of the first Shard is already changing Ariane, giving her the strength to do both good and evil…and when she seriously hurts his bullying sister Flish, it seems he might be right.
Twist of the Blade releases to the public on September 15…just in time for my appearance at Word on the Street in Saskatoon!
A month ago I posted the first chapter of Shadows, the second book in The Masks of Aygrima. Now we’re just about a month from the actual release of the novel, and so, as promised, I’ve posted a second chapter.
Watch for a chance to win an autographed copy of the novel, coming as soon as I have some copies to offer…
My daughter Alice (newly fledged teenager) is a big fan of Wattpad, and has begun posting her own writing there (alicehasreadit is her account, and trust me, the kid’s got promise). I’ve poked around at it and thought it might be an interesting place to try to snare a few new readers, so by way of giving it a go, I’ve created an account (EdwardWillett) and have begun serializing Andy Nebula: interstellar Rock Star:
If you need incentive, check out this recent review on Amazon from Hard Sci-Fi Guy:
“I was expecting this book to be a tongue in cheek novel about a bunch of weird aliens and, instead, the author gave me a great story with a plot that me wondering how it would turn out. Definitely give it a try.”
Heed his advice!
I had a great signing of Song of the Sword Chapters Regina on Saturday–lots of people stopped to talk, and sold about a dozen books over the three hours, which is pretty good for these sorts of things.
Next Saturday, June 28, I’ll be in Saskatoon, reading and signing at McNally Robinson at 1 p.m., then moving over to Indigo for 4 to 6 p.m.
Hope to see you there!
RT Book Reviews Magazine has named Shadows one of its “Top Picks” in Fantasy for August, with a glowing 4 1/2-star review (the same rating given to Masks, which was also shortlisted for Best Fantasy Novel of 2013 in the RT Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Awards).
The review isn’t online yet (although as you can see, I have a copy forwarded to me by my Penguin publicist), but I couldn’t be happier with it. Written by Annalee Schuck, it says:
“Fans of Masks will not be disappointed with Blake’s amazing sequel, Shadows. The magic continues in this enthralling adventure, grabbing the readers’ interest and holding it until th final page. Each chapter brings a new twist in the already sensational story. Blake creates the perfect mix of adventure and romance as the main character, Mara Holdfast, struggles to come of age in a world that is quickly changing. Mara’s struggle is relevant to readers of any age.”
Shadows comes out on August 5.