It’s Friday, and that means we’ve got another delicious, fantastical story for you to consume this weekend! Zachariah Lars and the High Elf Mystery by Jonathan Lazar is a wild, witty, and gripping novella. You can purchase directly from us here!
Present Day: Saint Louis, Missouri, New World. Zachariah Lars—former Magi Police Officer turned Private Investigator—takes the cases that the Magi won’t touch. When Zachariah is visited by High Princess Mahtab of the African high elves, she tells him someone wants to assassinate her.
Zachariah must piece together the mystery of not only this stunningly beautiful African high elf, but also who is behind the assassination attempts on her life. He only has three days to accomplish the task. Mystery, intrigue, humor, magic, and foul language abound in this series by Jonathan M. Lazar.
Retailers: Direct, Amazon, B&N, Kobo, Target, IndieBound and more. Available by special order at your favorite local bookstore or library.
Help us spread the word by sharing the book with your fantasy-loving friends and family. It makes a great gift, and so would sharing this on social media, adding it to your list(s) on Goodreads, and leaving a review!
Jonathan Lazar was born in 1985 to the greatest generation that there is: the Nintendo Generation! The eldest of three male siblings, Jonathan is the only creative one. His brothers inherited the sports genes. Originally from the Chicago area, he has lived in Michigan, middle-of-nowhere Illinois, Saint Louis, and currently Tucson. When he’s not writing fantasy or science fiction; he draws, cooks, bakes, and stuffs his face full of sushi or pizza that he has made. He shares two Siamese cats with his husband, whom he met in college. Or rather – he would say – the Siamese cats (Ping and Pong) share them.
Want to learn more about this amazing book and its author? Check out an interview between A.R. and Kyanite Publishing co-founder Sam Hendricks that took place on Twitter this past week (below)!
Sam: Where did you get the inspiration for Forgotten Storm?
A.R.: I’ve always been an avid reader of anything romance, but paranormal romance was my passion. Vampires in particular. Over the years, I felt the vampire mythology shifted. Vampires could walk in the sun, eat food, they couldn’t teleport or use persuasion. They stopped feeding on humans and some even sparkled. I itched to write stories depicting the vampires I fell in love with; strong Alpha males with all the weaknesses and strengths inherent to a vampire.
Did you outline Forgotten Storm before writing it, or did you “fly by the seat of your pants” and come up with the plot as you went?
I’m a huge proponent of outlining. Now, that’s not to say I stick to it once I start writing, but I need that framework or starting point. Once creativity starts flowing, and the characters become living breathing beings to me, they control the direction they wish to go. That certainly happened with Forgotten Storm. Nicole and Logan shaped every element of the story.
Early readers are saying this is super steamy, but it also has an action-packed, fully developed dark fantasy plot that appeals to non-romance readers, too. How did you balance the two?
I wanted Forgotten Storm to be about more than just sex. I wanted suspense, intrigue, surprises, appealing side characters. &, of course, sex. What would a PNR be without hot steamy sex, but I didn’t want it to drive the story. I wanted Nicole’s world to be substantial, her conflict real. I hope I achieved that.
The romance in Forgotten Storm is laced with themes of power, control, and submission. Tell us a little more about that, and how it defines the relationship between the main characters.
Wow. That’s a tough question. For Nicole, she used physical pain to control her emotional pain. It helped her deal with the chaos in her mind, the trauma of her past. She is a fierce, courageous, strong willed woman. A fighter. In her day to day life, she demands complete control. Except for this one area. But Logan teaches her there’s a beautiful balance between pain and pleasure when it’s with someone you love and trust. I strived to show this power play as strong, NOT weak. Because Nicole is anything but weak or submissive. I needed those elements to be depicted in an environment of love, passion, and strength.
Forgotten Storm is the first in a series. Without giving much away, can you tell us what to expect from the next book? Is it already written? What about the rest of the series?
Book 2 is already written, just going through its final polishing stages, but the main focus shifts to another couple present in Forgotten Storm. In fact, many characters continue on through the series. But… some don’t. Book 3 I’m currently writing, and book 4 plays through my mind constantly, demanding to be written. Without revealing too much, I think of all the books in this series, book 4 will be my most challenging to write.
Join us as we explore ten different realms of magic, adventure, and excitement! From exploring ancient ruins to save a sickly child in The Hand That Holds to the classic sword and sorcery action of The Iron Sorcerer, this issue proves that high fantasy can provide a platform for a variety of entertaining, exciting, and thoughtful stories.
A new beginning to a beloved franchise.
Five novelettes, five short stories, ten amazing authors.
Almost 100,000 words, four times as many as our previous regular issues.
American socialite Richard Jericho is a world-renowned treasure hunter. British professor of archaeology Wilkins Chapman is his stoic compatriot. Together, the two have uncovered antiquities from South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. On their most recent trip to the jungles of Peru they discover something more than they expected. As the fabric of reality comes apart, the two must journey across the globe chasing clues. As one answer leads to more questions, they begin to piece together a puzzle older than primal memory itself.
And the more they part the veil, the more of what lies beyond the veil spills into our reality.
Praise for Parting the Veil
“Finished this gem in 5 hours…I just couldn’t put it down. The rich history and landscapes bring the imagery right to you and the descriptive horror had me reeling. Can’t wait for more of this story!” 5 Stars from Michael Nadeau on Goodreads
A quick trip down the gothic rabbit hole. This story includes aspects of Lovecraft, Verne and the Indiana Jones series, yet the author has a voice that is distinctly his own. Bass is excellent at combining craft elements we usually expect in literary fiction (strong character development,interiority, and carful attention to setting) while not taking away from the action (or fun!) Full disclosure: I was lent a digital ARC to review, but have an order in for my print copy – it’s that good. 5 Stars from Professor Cognome on Goodreads
There are very few writers today who can craft a world the way B.K. Bass can. It’s rich, it’s layered, and it’s enticing. The characters are real, the story is gripping, and you are a bit sad when you reach the last page. As much as I want to gush about my favorite this or that, even the slightest detail would lead to spoilers. Slow hand clap for Parting the Veil. 5 Stars from J.D. Sanderson on Goodreads
An Enthralling and Epic Adventure of Twists, Turns & Mystery! I was given an Advanced Reader Copy of “Parting the Veil” in exchange for an honest review. “Parting the Veil” is hands down one the best books I have read in a long time! I am so looking forward to the continuation of this epic adventure in Book II of this “Beyond the Veil” series and see what else this author will bring us in the future! Bass’s writing is sublime, rich, seamless, and not a word is wasted! This story is a snappy, yet rich, action-packed journey in the midst of the turmoil of the late 1930’s & is full of mystery and adventure. I found myself effortlessly enthralled by Bass’s “Parting the Veil” from the first sentence to the last, eagerly turning each page. This is not a book to miss if you enjoy fiction, adventure, history, mystery in any combination. BK Bass is most definitely an author to watch! He is a rising star! 5 Stars from Jill Squire on Goodreads
July 27th, 2019 – We’re proud to announce that we’ve partnered with World Anvil to create a unique new writing competition! We are thrilled to have been asked to not only participate in this process, but to be the publisher for the anthology that will be produced as a result. We look forward to showcasing the amazing talents of the World Anvil community.
What is World Anvil?
World Anvil is a website founded in October of 2017 by Janet Forbes and Dimitris Havlidis. It is a place where authors, table-top RPG (role playing game) dungeonmasters, and hobbyists can develop, maintain, and display fictional worlds in a wiki-style system. More than that, it is a growing community of almost half a million members all working together to advance their own worldbuilding and writing skills.
Did you say writing competition?
Yes! We are looking for the best speculative fiction novelettes from the amazing community of World Anvil members. This can be sci-fi, fantasy, speculative horror, alternative history, and so forth. While it is not required to have a detailed world associated with the story on World Anvil, it is encouraged. All entries must be in English to qualify. The word-count range we are looking for is 7,500 – 12,500. The deadline is September 21st, 2019. Winners will be announced on a World Anvil live stream on December 14th, 2019.
This is a very unique competition that encourages community involvement and is intended to showcase the talent of World Anvil members. All entries must be written on World Anvil using their Prose article template. It will not be possible to submit for this competition via email.
How does this work?
The first thing you’ll need is a World Anvil account, and it’s free to sign up! Once you’ve gotten logged in, you’ll need to create a world–don’t worry, it’s easy! After that, you can start your entry using the Prose template. Once you’re done writing, make sure the article is not a draft or hidden, save it, then click the button on the right side of the editor to enter the competition!
The Selection Process
The first round of the competition will be based on likes, so you’ll want to get involved with the community and promote your work. We recommend joining World Anvil’s Discord server to facilitate this.
Forty entries will be selected based on likes, after which they’ll be qualified and judged by the World Anvil staff. Of those, twenty finalists will be passed along to us for evaluation.
From there, we will select ten entries to be published in the anthology.
We will also select one that we feel has great potential to grow into something more, and the author will receive a contract offer for their own stand-alone book of novella or novel length.
What if we lived in a world where the government could assess your mental health, without any criminal activity or precursor, and commit you to a facility against your will? That’s the future Majanka Verstraete explores in Murder in Mind, led by a protagonist who’s been institutionalized after watching her parents murder. If you’re interested in science fiction, psychological thrillers, and/or dystopian futures, you may find yourself devouring this phenomenal story in one sitting.
You can purchase Murder in Mind directly from us, or from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or other online retailers. You can also request a copy at your local bookstore, you’ll just need the International Standard Book Number (ISBN). The hardcover ISBN is 978-1-949645-50-7 and the paperback ISBN is 978-1-949645-49-1.
You can support the author by adding the book to your list(s) on Goodreads, sharing it with your friends and family, and amplifying our posts on social media!
Our chat with Michael D. Nadeau, author of The Darkness Returns, A Lythinall Novel: Book One begins now! Thank you for hanging out with us on your big day! What else do you have planned to celebrate your release?
Michael: I’m having a book signing at my local Barnes and Noble (Manchester, NH) with some other authors (a lot more famous than myself I might add) and generally having a great day handing out coloring pages to kids there as well!
Us: That’s right! We wish we could be there to support you. We will be in spirit! 🙂
Michael: I could use a good couple of ghosts there with me to keep things light – LOL.
Us: Getting right into it, here’s a question submitted by Sam Hendricks. “The characters in The Darkness Returns are so real, and the world is so lived in, that at times I forgot I wasn’t really there with them. How long did it take you to build such a realistic world?”
Michael: I’ve been building worlds for so long in our weekly games that it just kind of happened without much thought. Steal a piece from this adventure, a castle from that one and it just fell into place. So really if you fall in love with Lythinall, you’re actually playing in all of our games and worlds reimagined in book form. Kind of surreal now that I think of it.
Us: That’s actually very surprising. Everything fits together so well, I would never have imagined it came together like that!
Michael: All I had to do was draw a rough map and it was like…”Oh yeah, I’ll use that piece here, and OH that story with the faeries I sent to my friend Kevin would fit there…”
Us: Your answers to that last question apply to this one as well, so maybe you can expand on it. This is a question submitted by one of your editors, B.K. Bass. “I know you’ve done a lot of tabletop roleplay gaming. How did that influence your writing and worldbuilding?”
Michael: It’s a huge influence. That’s how I started to tell stories after all. Once I started running games and realized I had to come up with details for the players I kind of found my little piece of heaven. It was like breathing clean air after living in smog. It was so much fun to create taverns and cities that sometimes that’s all we did, and when I learned to create Gods and pantheons, along with entire worlds…well let’s just say we went through our fair share of burning them down as well. And the fun part is that even my wife played. That’s who Shyi is in the beginning of the book. My beloved Shyi was her character. We had so much fun that writing just came as part of the deal. I started even writing short stories for my friends for gifts and such.
Us: That’s amazing. Speaking of characters, here’s a question submitted by another one of your editors, Sarah LaChance. ” If you had to pick only one of your characters to have a drink with, who would it be and why?”
Michael: Wow… Ok, I would have to say Karsis. Even though he is the personification of my oldest character, mixed with all the sarcasm I have bottled up inside of me at any three moments, I would love to just talk shop with him and see what trouble we could get into… epic.
Us: The Darkness Returns is the first novel in the series. Without giving away any spoilers, what’s next? Is the whole series already written? Do you have a plan for how many there will be? Will you ever open the world and let others write in it?
Michael: LOL! Well yes, the main story is all written so don’t worry I won’t let anyone hang. The next book is The Darkness Within where we see the rest of the Companions of Everknight and everyone meets in that great city. Then I have a set of short stories based on side characters and tertiary characters. explaining some of the little things in the other books. Then we move on to the finale, The Darkness Falls. War, bad guys, and a finish that gave me goosebumps and tears. I honestly can’t freaking wait for all of you to see it, and I have plans to pull a Star Wars thing. Go back and tell the companions stories and then jump back forward to the Kings messengers as well, maybe expand to the other nations around Lythinall.
*We’ll try and keep this updated as new questions are posted on Twitter (July 12th, 2019).
DK Marie: What inspired you to write The Darkness Returns?
Michael: Besides the role-playing? Well, I was telling a friend to find a job that included the things he liked to do and he turned it back on me saying that I haven’t done that. So I took a step back and said, “Shit he’s right.” So I decided to try my hand at a fully fledged story. Viola!
*Author Michael D. Nadeau will appear for a live interview on Twitter at 1:00 PM ET. Follow us there to read the transcript!
*Meet Michael and score a signed book at the Manchester, NH Barnes and Noble from 5-7pm! The event is also a benefit/book drive for the Manchester Public Library and will feature other authors.
You can order the book directly from us, or find it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and through other online retailers. Prefer to support your local independent bookstore? They’ll order in a copy at your request, all you need is the title and author name or ISBN, which is 978-1-949645-60-6 for the hardcover and 978-1-949645-61-3 for the paperback.
Thanks for supporting this talented author and our growing small business!
Volume 1, Issue 6 of the Kyanite Press is now available for pre order! CLICK HERE to be sure to get a copy from the first print run!
Returning to the feel of the first ever issue back in September of 2018; rather than having a single theme, we have assembled here a mixture of fantasy, science fiction, and weird tales. Everything from space travel to sword-wielding heroics can be found within these pages. One of the most wonderful outcomes of publishing the journal has been discovering a variety of stories with styles and themes we might have never otherwise dreamed of, and this issue showcases that.
The Kyanite Press is a journal of speculative fiction. Inside this homage to the pulp magazines of the last century you will find tales of science fiction, fantasy, and horror from some of the most imaginative authors in the genre. Every issue is packed with fiction and NO commercial advertising, just information about Kyanite Publishing books and authors! Explore amazing new worlds, travel to exotic realms, and delve inside the human mind in ways you will never see anywhere else!