Hello, US and Canada, on your Defiant Peaks Publication Day!

I’ve been wondering how to do a book-giveaway to celebrate Defiant Peaks hitting the bookshelves and just lately, there’s been a very interesting game doing the rounds of writers, where readers ask for a sentence from a story the author hasn’t actually written (yet).

This strikes a particular chord with me because as I was writing Defiant Peaks, I had to curb repeated impulses to tell some of the stories going on in the background as these events unfolded, not least because that would have distracted from the main plot and the points of view would have been all wrong. You’ll see what I mean when you read Defiant Peaks.

So how about you ask me for a snippet from an unwritten story? Everyone can play, and I’ll give away two books to the best suggestions, one to celebrate the US edition and one to celebrate the UK publication on 6th December. So you have time to think of a good question and I have time to come up with some good answers. It doesn’t have to be an Einarinn story you’re asking about, and if the winners already have the full Hadrumal Crisis trilogy, I’ll happily substitute another of my books.

How does that sound?

US publication 27th November 2012
Read the book and find out exactly what Archmage Planir is doing here…[/caption

Author: Juliet

Juliet E McKenna is a British fantasy author living in the Cotswolds, UK. Loving history, myth and other worlds since she first learned to read, she has written fifteen epic fantasy novels so far. Her debut, The Thief’s Gamble, began The Tales of Einarinn in 1999, followed by The Aldabreshin Compass sequence, The Chronicles of the Lescari Revolution, and The Hadrumal Crisis trilogy. The Green Man’s Heir was her first modern fantasy inspired by British folklore in 2018, and The Green Man’s Quarry in 2023 is the sixth title in this ongoing series. Her 2023 novel The Cleaving is a female-centred retelling of the story of King Arthur, while her shorter stories include forays into dark fantasy, steampunk and science fiction. She promotes SF&Fantasy by reviewing, by blogging on book trade issues, attending conventions and teaching creative writing. She has served as a judge for major genre awards. As J M Alvey, she has written historical murder mysteries set in ancient Greece.

15 thoughts on “Hello, US and Canada, on your Defiant Peaks Publication Day!

    1. My profits were still marginal. Kellarin folk simply didn’t have much coin to spend on luxuries like Tormalin wine.
      I looked up from my ledger as Ryshad came in. “What can I buy by the sackful for copper pennies in Kellarin and sell on the mainland for a silver mark for a handful?”
      ‘Shall we go and see?’ he suggested dourly. ‘Halice says that one of her men swears he’s seen a fugitive from Lescari justice get off a ship in Vithrancel.’
      No wonder he looked grim. Ryshad was supposed to net such scum when the tall ships stopped at these mid-ocean islands.

  1. What is warlord Daish kaida reaction to the news when he hears about the wizard attacking the isle when he finally hears about it givin his past history

    1. ‘These people have no dealings with magic?’ Ocufa Eriti twisted his gnarled hands together with unconscious longing for the tome of metallurgical lore.
      ‘Any mageborn are sent into exile,’ Kheda assured him. Best not to mention the different enchantments which the folk of the mainland’s frozen north can call on.
      As the Ocufa warlord chewed his beard in the nut palm’s shade, Risala approached to unobtrusively tuck a message slip into Kheda’s hand. He unrolled it as the old man wrestled with his conscience.
      He read and reread the words with disbelief. Anger burned through his incredulity to be swiftly doused with fear. Would this inexplicable wizardly folly see the war which he had long dreaded now destroy his people?

    1. ‘Will you ever grant us a university charter?’ Prudence and courtesy alike deserted the scholar goaded by exasperation.
      Emperor Tadriol pursed his lips. ‘You say that your students feel the occasional brush of distant Artifice—’
      ‘Kellarin’s Adepts are naturally interested in our aetheric studies.’ Mentor Elnion waved that away. ‘And I’ve no doubt that Suthyfer’s ties with Hadrumal see word passed on to scholars in Vanam and Col who use their enchantments to glance this way. With a university charter, we could formalise the proper exchange of knowledge.’
      The Emperor raised a hand to quell both the scholar and the Sieur Den Dalderin scowling ferociously at the end of the table.
      ‘Can you be certain that the sheltya are not watching your ambitions?’ Tadriol enquired coldly. ‘Those adepts of the remote mountains? Do you really wish to draw the attention of Artificers whose rumoured power terrifies the hardiest and most brutal miners of Gidesta?

  2. I’d like to see an ambassador from the Ice Islands trying to visit the Tormalin king in hopes of securing aid after the end of _Assassin’s Edge_.

    1. ‘What have you got there?’ Bythel gaped as the Haze Dancer’s crew dumped a short, skinny man bound in netting on the quayside along with their boxes of fish.
      ‘Found him half drowned in a sinking cockleshell.’ Lyas cracked his knuckles with satisfaction.
      ‘Mountain man?’ Bythel leaned closer, seeing the captive’s blond hair amid the weedy meshes.
      ‘He’s a runt if he is— Saedrin’s stones!’ Lyas swore as the trussed-up man vanished to leave the net sagging emptily onto the dock.
      ‘You’ll regret doing that to a wizard.’ Bythel was caught between apprehension and amusement.
      Mystified, Lyas shook his head. ‘No wizards to be found in the Mountains, any more than seafarers.’
      ‘Then where did he come from?’ Bythel looked nervously out to sea.

  3. – and over on LiveJournal, CE Murphy says:

    I think I’d like a sentence from that science fiction epic about the aliens who finds the ravaged remains of planet Earth and must decide whether to resurrect/save the failing human species or let nature take its course–which would give them the home planet they desperately need after their own has been destroyed by planetary warfare.

    “Her skin shifted from the blue of concentration to contemptuous grey as she turned from the console.
    ‘There is such arrogance in your merciless argument. What of the possibility that we might learn lessons from these survivors, to help our own race avoid such disaster?’
    Treacherous chromatophores sent a wash of yellow humiliation from his crest to the tip of his tail.

  4. Okay, competition results time. The overall winner is Adrianne – because this is the one story I have never thought of writing. Isn’t it a brilliant idea?

    As for everyone else, I love the way that your familiarity and enthusiasm for Einarinn means that you’ve already thought of questions and plot lines which you will see addressed, if only in passing, in Defiant Peaks. And that’s as much as I will say until you’ve read the book.

    Apart from Catie Murphy who threw me the sort of out-of-genre challenge we writers just adore setting each other. 🙂

    So, prizes. You know what, I had such fun doing this that I reckon everyone deserves a book. Adrianne can have more than one as overall winner.

    So if you all email me – juliet dot mckenna at gmail dot com – (you can decode that okay, so I don’t have to post a live link for the spambots?), we can discuss what books you would like and how I can get them to you.

    Incidentally, ebooks of the Lescari and Hadrumal trilogies are available as well as hardcopy, and the ebook of The Thief’s Gamble is now out, with The Swordsman’s Oath to follow soon.

    Thanks for entering!

    And I will now do an actual post about this, to make sure everyone sees it.

      1. Isn’t it just? And wouldn’t seeing the past ten years events in this world from an Ice Islander’s perspective be interesting? How would the Tormalin Emperor respond to such an approach? Would that be some sort of catalyst for Tormalin study of Artifice?

        *sits firmly on hands to avoid reaching for pencil and paper to start an outline*

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