Sunday, July 27, 2014

Today's Kindle Daily Deals (July 27, 2014): Kim Harrison, romance, a Hollywood memoir, Sandman Slim and a middle grade fantasy



Here's today's Kindle Daily Deal, available for $1.99!

Ever After (The Hollows Book 11), by Kim Harrison.

Witch-turned-daywalking-demon Rachel Morgan needs to save the demonic realm of the Ever After in the eleventh entry in the New York Times bestselling Hollows series from supernatural adventure master Kim Harrison.

When Rachel sets off a chain of events that could lead to the end of the world—demonic and human—she must use her gifts to save those closest to her while preventing an apocalypse.
Satisfying and sexy, a visit to the Hollows will take readers on a wild journey that will capture their imagination. Fans of Charlaine Harris and Stephenie Meyer won't be able to resist Kim Harrison's alternative universe—urban fantasy Cincinnati complete with vampires, witches, and other enchanting creatures—where spine-tingling adventures and fast-paced action are the norm.

450 pages, with a 4.7-star rating from 935 reviews



Here's today's Daily Romance Deal, available for $1.99!

Hidden Secrets, by Carolyn Brown.

Kim Brewster’s ill-fated marriage was annulled so quickly that she thought she could keep the whole thing a secret…until she found out she was pregnant. But before her confession can blow a hole in the seemingly perfect lives of the Brewster women, her great-grandmother, Hannah, drops a bomb of her own. She’s selling her hotel and moving to a farm in Oklahoma—and all the Brewsters are coming with her. Kim is sure her grandmother, Karen, and mother, Sue, won’t go along with the plan, but Hannah can be very convincing. Soon the women are working the farm, selling their wares from a roadside stand, and finally feeling like a family.

And as the Brewster women’s lives take shape in ways they never expected, Kim may have found another shot at love. Luke thought he’d washed his hands of women, but when he stops by the vegetable stand and meets Kim, he’s instantly smitten. To find love, though, they’ll both have to dig past their hidden secrets.

257 pages, with a 4.5-star rating from 63 reviews



Here's today's Daily Non-Fiction Deal, available for $1.99!

The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made, by Greg Sestero.

The hilarious and inspiring story of how a mysterious misfit got past every roadblock in the Hollywood system to achieve success on his own terms: a $6 million cinematic catastrophe called The Room.

Nineteen-year-old Greg Sestero met Tommy Wiseau at an acting school in San Francisco. Wiseau’s scenes were rivetingly wrong, yet Sestero, hypnotized by such uninhibited acting, thought, “I have to do a scene with this guy.” That impulse changed both of their lives. Wiseau seemed never to have read the rule book on interpersonal relationships (or the instruc­tions on a bottle of black hair dye), yet he generously offered to put the aspiring actor up in his LA apart­ment. Sestero’s nascent acting career first sizzled, then fizzled, resulting in Wiseau’s last-second offer to Sestero of costarring with him in The Room, a movie Wiseau wrote and planned to finance, produce, and direct—in the parking lot of a Hollywood equipment-rental shop.

Wiseau spent $6 million of his own money on his film, but despite the efforts of the disbelieving (and frequently fired) crew and embarrassed (and fre­quently fired) actors, the movie made no sense. Nevertheless Wiseau rented a Hollywood billboard featuring his alarming headshot and staged a red carpet premiere. The Room made $1800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. One reviewer said that watching The Room was like “getting stabbed in the head.”

The Disaster Artist is Greg Sestero’s laugh-out-loud funny account of how Tommy Wiseau defied every law of artistry, business, and friendship to make “the Citizen Kane of bad movies” (Entertainment Weekly), which is now an international phenomenon, with Wiseau himself beloved as an oddball celebrity. Written with award-winning journalist Tom Bissell, The Disaster Artist is an inspiring tour de force that reads like a page-turning novel, an open-hearted portrait of an enigmatic man who will improbably capture your heart.

288 pages, with a 4.8-star rating from 225 reviews



Here's today's Daily Science Fiction/Fantasy Deal, available for $1.99!

Sandman Slim: A Novel, by Richard Kadrey.

“An addictively satisfying, deeply amusing, dirty-ass masterpiece.”
—William Gibson
“A sharp-edged urban fantasy, drenched in blood and cynicism, tipping its hat to Sam Peckinpah, Raymond Chandler, and the anti-heroes of Hong Kong cinema….A bravura performance.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“I couldn’t put it down.”
—Charlaine Harris

Sandman Slim has arrived—a wild and weird, edge-of-your-seat supernatural roller-coaster rider that propels author Richard Kadrey to the forefront of the fantasy, thriller, and a host of other literary genres. This spellbinding, utterly remarkable tale of a vengeful magician/hitman’s return from hell is part H.P. Lovecraft, part Christopher Moore, part Jim Butcher, and totally, unabashedly dark, twisted, and hilarious.

416 pages, with a 4.2-star rating from 416 reviews

The next three books in the Sandman Slim series are shown below in order, also at $1.99.





Here's today's Daily Youth Deal, available for $1.99!

Sky Raiders (Five Kingdoms), by Brandon Mull.

Adventure awaits in the Five Kingdoms—come and claim it in this start to a new series from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Fablehaven and Beyonders series.

Cole Randolph was just trying to have a fun time with his friends on Halloween (and maybe get to know Jenna Hunt a little better). But when a spooky haunted house turns out to be a portal to something much creepier, Cole finds himself on an adventure on a whole different level.

After Cole sees his friends whisked away to some mysterious place underneath the haunted house, he dives in after them—and ends up in The Outskirts. The Outskirts are made up of five kingdoms that lie between wakefulness and dreaming, reality and imagination, life and death. It’s an in-between place. Some people are born there. Some find their way there from our world, or from other worlds.

And once you come to the Outskirts, it’s very hard to leave.

With the magic of the Outskirts starting to unravel, it’s up to Cole and an unusual girl named Mira to rescue his friends, set things right in the Outskirts, and hopefully find his way back home…before his existence is forgotten.
Author One-on-One

Brandon Mull

Christopher Paolini
#1 bestselling author of The Inheritance Cycle Christopher Paolini interviews #1 bestselling author Brandon Mull about his new series, Five Kingdoms.
Paolini: What inspired you to write Five Kingdoms: Sky Raiders?
Mull: It’s hard for me to pinpoint where my stories come from. I get bored easily so I make up crazy stuff to cope with reality. Some of that stuff is useless, but some takes shape and becomes fun to revisit. I knew my sister-in-law Liz wanted a story with sky castles, so floating castles were one of the first ingredients I threw into the stew. I may not be able to detail the origin of Five Kingdoms, but I can explain what I was aiming to accomplish.
With Five Kingdoms, I wanted to bring together much of what I do best as a writer into one place. I wanted to merge some of the fun I put into Candy Shop War, with the discovery and adventure from Fablehaven, with some of the big world-building like I did in Beyonders. I wanted to create a world that opened up story possibilities I haven’t seen before.
The result is the Outskirts, where five different kingdoms are each governed by different types of magic. Some characters from our world get drawn into a fast-paced adventure that is sometimes scary and often strange but hopefully never boring.
Paolini: We’ve spoken before about your love of doorways, portals, and other such openings that transport you to strange and different places. That idea seems especially prominent in Sky Raiders. Is it something you thought about consciously when you were writing, or did it arise naturally from your interest in the subject?
Mull: Since my childhood, I’ve loved the idea of characters being transported to another world through a wardrobe, down a rabbit hole, over the rainbow, etc. As a kid, after reading the Narnia series, I sincerely wished for something like that to happen to me. I wanted to be king of some world and kill all the monsters and ride on lions and save everybody. When that didn’t pan out, I visited other worlds in my imagination instead.
With Five Kingdoms, I’m deliberately creating my most elaborate and varied world so far, and exploring it through the eyes of a character from our reality. Since each of the Five Kingdoms has different kinds of magic that work there, by the end of the series, readers essentially get to visit five new fantasy worlds in one.
Paolini: Many of your books feature characters who are siblings—specifically brother/sister—or who feel like siblings. In this case it’s Cole and Mira. Having a sister myself, I think you do a great job of portraying that sort of relationship. What is it, that you enjoy most about those kinds of characters?
Mull: I grew up as the oldest of five kids. I did and said nice, loving things to my siblings that I didn’t do or say to anyone else. And I did and said mean things to my siblings that I wouldn’t dare do or say to my worst enemies. And my siblings returned the favor in good and bad ways. We had each other’s back and we stabbed each other in the back.
Brother and sister relationships are complicated and interesting. They help ground characters and bring them to life in ways that many readers can identify with. I enjoy trying to capture the blend of silly banter, heated arguments, and real love and protectiveness that I remember from my own family relationships.
Paolini: It seems like you put a lot of thought into how the economy of the Five Kingdoms works. The sky raiders are scroungers, eking out a living on the edges of a very strange world. Much more interesting than just reading about kings and queens. How did you go about developing the economy and the society?
Mull: Some people think of fantasy as nonsense where anything can happen, but I’ve never seen it that way. To me, good fantasy doesn’t abandon reality. Instead, it creates a functional reality with different rules than our own. If my fantasy worlds make sense and feel authentic, the reader will have an easier time getting involved and caring about the story.
Part of the task involves figuring out the logistics of how the world works. Who governs it? How do they maintain control? Who supports them? Who dislikes them? Given the reality I have established, I try to think through how the fantasy/magical elements in the story would affect day-to-day life. I especially try to think how people would exploit different magical abilities or artifacts for gain.
Paolini: The magic in Five Kingdoms is really cool! I’d love to know more about why you chose this particular kind of magic and what its particular advantages/disadvantages are.
Mull: Each kingdom in Five Kingdoms has a different type of magic. Those in Sambria with magical talent can reshape reality as they desire. Only the most gifted can change reality in big ways and create beings called semblances that seem alive. Powerful shapers risk losing control and either becoming trapped in a nightmare of their own making or flat out destroying themselves and everything around them.
That type of magic seemed cool and dangerous, and gave an excuse for me to take readers to some very unusual settings. I had to be careful not to let the magic feel too powerful, so I made it very dangerous to tamper with living things, I made the magic work better in certain geographic locations than others, and I didn’t let any practitioners be flawless experts.
Paolini: Have you plotted out the series from start to finish? If so, how much does the outline change as you write?
Mull: I tend to daydream about my stories until I see them like movies in my mind. Then I convert that daydreamed adventure into written scenes. So I have a pretty firm blueprint at the start, but it evolves as I make discoveries along the way.
With Five Kingdoms, I know the kingdoms we’ll be visiting, and the main events that will happen. Many details will be added as I go.
Paolini: Who is your favorite character and why?
Mull: So hard to pick! I like Cole because he really cares about his friends and takes responsibility for them accidentally getting taken to the Outskirts as slaves. I think he is funny and grounded and tries hard to do the right thing.
Paolini: If you had to choose one magical item to use when raiding along with the sky raiders, which one would you choose?
Mull: Of the items in the book, I’d want Jace’s golden rope. It was an item that he claimed when scouting out a sky castle. The rope can get longer and shorter as needed. It responds to the will of the wielder, so it can reach out and tangle an enemy, wrap around a distant object, coil and spring the wielder forward, or curl up to cushion a fall. The golden rope’s extreme versatility would increase my chances of surviving a dangerous sky castle raid.

433 pages, with a 4.6-star rating from 147 reviews



Happy Reading!

Betsy

No comments:

Post a Comment