Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Death Dragon's Kiss ~ Book Launch, Review, & Author Interview!


Kiser, T.K. (2017). Death Dragon's Kiss:The Manakor Chronicles Book #2. Saint Pancratius Press. 

Middle Grade to Young YA / Sci-Fi / Fantasy
157 pages


BLURB: Would you betray yourself for someone you love?

Carine and the princes are back in the second installment of the Manakor Chronicles: Death Dragon's Kiss.

The dragon Kavariel's continued absence from Navafort unleashes a new threat and from North Esten to the royal family, no one is safe.

Desperate for an answer, Carine, David, and Giles encounter stealthy creatures, journey deeper into Navafort, and teeter precariously at the moral edge of good magic and bad, all while shadowed by a mysterious girl from a foreign land.

But even as they band together to protect life and the kingdom, the biggest threat to everything is each other.
HALL WAYS REVIEW: In this second book in the Manakor Chronicles series, main character Carine is a little older, but she’s still struggling with her old magical demons. She recognizes that her magic (much like people do) has two main modes -- good and evil – and that the gray area between is sometimes difficult to navigate. Add to that the difficulties of being a teenager who may or may not be in love, and who has some self-doubt and feels unworthy and even inferior at times, and you have a believable protagonist, flaws and all. There is a large dose of teen angst this round, but it is a great balance to the superhero factor so that readers can enjoy realistic characters.

The book can stand alone, but readers will miss-out on a lot of awesome back-story by not reading The Firebrand Legacy first. Author T.K. Kiser provides some necessary references for readers so there is never any confusion about what’s going on – curiosity, perhaps, about what happened to get our characters to this point – but never confusion.

I really enjoy that despite Death Dragon’s Kiss being set in a clearly magical and fantastical world, there is also some science at play with the reminder that most myths are based on some fact. It’s a subtle addition to the story line that underscores that it’s okay to ask questions and not accept everything at face value just because others have done it that way. The story also reinforces to readers that doing the right thing is quite often not the easiest path to take and can be downright difficult. The struggles in the book are real.

As with book one in the series, the writing continues to be excellent in Death Dragon’s Kiss. Sentences and dialogue flow naturally and descriptions enable readers to have that “fly on the wall” feeling of being there, right in the middle of the action. Also in the same vein as book one, BAM! Book two has a FABULOUS ending that leaves readers hanging and chomping at the bit for more adventures! I cannot wait for the next book in this series (check out the Bonus interview below for some news).

There is no sexual content of any kind, but this book travels into coming-of-age range and feelings beyond the platonic are beginning to be explored, as are bigger, more serious themes and consequences of choices. Some scenes are intense, and death and devastation are more widely felt. Though the first book has a younger reader appeal, Death Dragon’s Kiss moves solidly into middle grade, young-young adult range.

Thank you to the author for providing me an eBook copy in exchange for my honest opinion – the only kind I give. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: T.K. Kiser writes young adult fantasy adventure fiction in Greenville, South Carolina. She loves stories about quests, battles, and good’s triumph over evil because they reveal things about real life. When she isn’t writing, she’s supposed to be writing, but instead procrastinates by bothering her husband and cooking allergy-free food. Her first novel, The Firebrand Legacy, was published on December 8, 2015. Author Links: 



Why did you choose to write fantasy?
I write upper middle grade fantasy adventure, and I love it. I love writing for 10 to 14-year-olds because I really believe in people that age. This is a time when childhood fades away; one decides who she really is, what kind of person she wants to be. I write fantasy because the power of beauty and love in the world is sometimes most easily explored as magic. Finally, I write adventure because life is an adventure. A book is a chance to examine your own life by living the most powerful moments in someone else’s for a while.

What cultural value do you see in books and storytelling?
Books help us learn from other’s mistakes; they help us practice empathy, putting ourselves in someone else’s shoes; they challenge us, giving us space and time to unpack aspects that may have disturbed or inspired us. Finally, books are social; you can share and discuss a book. Some people think stories are for escaping life, and there can be a time for that, but even more importantly, a good story gives us insight into our own lives.

How does your book relate to your life path?
I believe that nothing in life is pointless, that in fact there is a great destiny for each of us, if we choose to seek it. In The Manakor Chronicles, the whole magic system depends upon a call from the Etherrealm. Everything and everyone is made for a purpose; their fulfillment, peace, and joy depend on being attentive to that purpose and answering the call with courage.

What projects are you working on at the present?
I am working on The Manakor Chronicles Book #3 (!!!) and a spin-off book about a minor character whose story I can’t wait to share.

What’s your favorite quote?
I love Mother Teresa’s quote, “Do small things with great love.” A small thing, with great love, is no small thing at all.

Click for Hall Ways Review

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