Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour & Giveaway for Quest of Fire: Succession & The Gathering Dark by Brett Armstrong, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!
ABOUT THE BOOKS
Series: Quest of Fire #0.5
Author: Brett Armstrong
Publisher: Expanse Books
Release Date: November 10, 2020
Genre: Christian Epic Fantasy
Synopsis: Son of the Northern Realm’s Defender, raised among the dwarfs of Ordumair, Meredoch was anticipated to succeed his father. Some whispered he would bring the longed-for peace between Ordumair and their ancient foe, Ecthelowall. All of that changes when Ordumair’s Thane is killed and Meredoch and his family are exiled. From prestige to poverty, the young boy must chart a new course. As the years pass and the idol that was his father’s legacy tarnishes, his past threatens to resurface. An artifact of immeasurable worth to Ordumair is found and if recovered by the cruel Elder Ulster it means disaster for those Meredoch cares about. Battling creatures he believed only myths and racing Ulster’s minions to the prize, Meredoch must face the truth of his place in the world and claim his right of succession.
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Title: The Gathering Dark
Series: Quest of Fire #1
Author: Brett Armstrong
Publisher: Expanse Books
Release Date: June 24, 2020
Genre: Christian Epic Fantasy
Synopsis: Jason is an expert at running from his past. But when it catches up, he finds himself hiding in a peculiar inn listening to a tale from centuries past. The story is Anargen’s, a teen who is pulled from all he loves to follow his oaths of loyalty to the fabled King of the Realms. Together with his mentor, Cinaed, he rides north on a special quest to mediate peace talks between ancient foes—the men of Ecthelowall and the dwarfs of Ordumair. Nothing goes as planned. Many on both sides of the dispute despise Anargen’s Order. Worse, an arcane evil has returned to the North. This “Grey Scourge” seeks to ruin the peace talks and ensure a lost treasure held by the dwarfs is never found by those for whom it is meant. As Anargen’s story unfolds, Jason begins to wonder whether it is truly just a fable. He soon finds himself drawn into the conflict Anargen faced. A battle which has shaped and can destroy his world.
Hello Brett! Thanks for stopping by so we can get to know you better!
Which of your Published or Unpublished books is your favorite, and why?
This is going to sound terrible but my favorite is always the one I’m working. Or at least that’s the one that grips me tightest. Every book is special to me though, because there are deeper currents unique to each. Plot, characters, and world-building (especially world-building) are important to me, but I always want there to be something extra that will resonate with a reader long after that last page is read.
How do you pick your character’s personalities or looks?
Sometimes people I know inspire parts of a character, sometimes it’s people from history or that I see out and about, and other times characters are based on what kind of person the events I know from a story would shape. Plot, characters, and setting are continuously shaping one another, so usually whatever my character started as at the outset isn’t exactly who they are at the end.
On a lighter note, for the looks, I like to sketch and usually discover neat things about characters’ looks that way. Quest of Fire in particular has been benefitted from that process.
What is your favorite genre to read? What is your favorite genre to write? And why are they your favorites?
I’m pretty much a sucker for a good sci-fi story, though I read all over the genre spectrum. It’s tougher to choose one genre as my favorite to write, though I’m enjoying Quest of Fire, because I get to blend historical and fantasy, and I enjoy both very much. I’m that kid who used to read the history text books for fun. I suppose I like reading sci-fi and like historical fiction and fantasy for the some of the same reasons, in all of them you can be transported to these other places that are on the surface incredible and unreachable, but at the same time are at their core usually very much like our own world.
What inspires you the most?
I would say the Lord gives me inspiration. The particular mechanisms vary from story to story. I will say that music can really get me into the writing mood. Different songs trigger the urge to write different stories. And in ways that barely even make sense to me. haha
Once an idea takes root, how long does it take you to write it down? Do you use outlines?
It usually depends on how far I am from something I can type or write on and if I can focus on it. By the time something has taken root days or months could have passed, because I really have to see a scene unfolding and then I like to get a sense of where that scene could lead next before I commit to it. For a long time I wrote fully via discovery, just knowing the general start middle and end, but especially with something as big as Quest of Fire (I have seven books planned), I’ve been doing a bit of outlining so that I can keep to a path without drifting too far into the woods so to speak.
Do you have a favorite author? Or someone whom you would say has influenced your writing style?
If I didn’t say Tolkien and C.S. Lewis I’m sure a few readers would raise their eyebrows. Some other are Daniel Defoe, H.G. Wells, Robert Louis Stevenson, and on the more recent side Suzanne Collins. Though I’d like to think I take little insights from every work and author I read.
What are your hobbies other than writing?
Reading, drawing, gardening, and watching movies have always been favorite pastimes for me. I also dabble in video games (I really enjoy Elder Scrolls style RPGs, I just never have the time to get into them as much as I’d like). Mostly I do whatever my little boy wants to do.
Do you have a genre that you would never write?
I would say it’s unlikely for me to write horror, comedy, or romance, because I feel like I’m too clumsy to be romantic, too stiff for comedy, and too obvious to be scary. Though my wife is really holding out hope for a romance novel from me. I’ve also learned to never say no to a good story when I find one, because there are great stories in every genre, and who am I to say no to a story the Lord leads me to?
What is one thing you would say has had the greatest impact on your writing?
Faith in Christ. Each book I write is dedicated to God’s glory without Whom there would be no words worth writing. When I look at things I try to see beyond the mirror darkly to what the Lord would have me to see of His eternal reality.
Lastly, what was your favorite book growing up?
I had a whole host of books growing up that were important to me or meant something special at particular age. But the first book I know for certain that I really liked was Wobbles the Witchcat. I really liked cats as a kid and the book was written by Mary Calhoun, which was my maternal grandmother’s maiden name. She passed away shortly after I was born and I think every time my mom read it to me it meant something special to her and I picked up on it. I checked it out of our public library so often that when it came time to retire the book from their collection the children’s department librarian gave it to me to keep.
I loved the answers you gave to my questions Brett and I am sure my readers have enjoyed getting to know the man behind the pages. Thank you again for stopping by!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
(1) winner will receive a story inspired prize package including: • One copy of The Gathering Dark and Succession (Winner’s choice print or e-book) Custom signed bookplates for each if print chosen • One copy of Wardrobes, Wizards, and Halflings: A Faith in Fiction Devotional (Winner’s choice print or e-book) • Two pieces of book swag (winner’s choice from bookswag pics) • Flash Drive with Digital print of previously unreleased The Gathering Dark artwork, MP4 of Quest of Fire’s theme music “Lament for Father” and Digital poster “The Making of Wirgerd” describing the visual and story development of Succession’s monstrous villain!
Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway will begin at midnight October 26, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on November 2, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.
Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.
Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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