#Friday56 & #BookBeginnings: The Plague Diairies (+Giveaway!)

Fate is a line free will twists into a spiral.
- p. 3

For Friday 56:
"If ever there's a drop left in this box , or the King's, Miss," he replied.
"It tasted of smoke and cherries," I said.

He tilted the bottle to read the label."And rain. One of his favorites this one."
- p. 56


About The Plague Diaries by Ronlyn Domingue*: The astounding, epic conclusion to the Keeper of Tales Trilogy brings together the cryptic prophecy in The Mapmaker's War and the troubling mysteries in The Chronicle of Secret Riven--leading to an unforgettable reckoning between lies and truth. We are all born made of gold. Secret Riven--the mystically gifted heroine who now represses her uncanny telepathic power--works for the mysterious magnate Fewmany as an archivist in his private library. There, she stumbles upon the arcane manuscript that had vanished following her mother's untimely death. She suspects the manuscript contains a profound secret, and she is yet unaware of its link to a thousand-year-old war and her own family's legacy. The tasks before her are clear: Secret must finally learn what Fewmany wants from her as well as the meaning of a strange symbol she's dreamed of since childhood. At last, she must confront the questions haunting her and depart on a quest to find the truth about herself, her dead mother, and her fate--to unleash a Plague of Silences meant to destroy, and transform, the world as all have known it. A dazzling, genre-bending masterwork, The Plague Diaries illuminates the power of our choices, the scars they leave, and the wounds they heal. 

***

That first line is a gem. And the page 56 snippet is intriguing - words that draw me in, intrigue me, and eventually push me to read.

I've been a little quiet lately on the blog as life has taken some twists and turns. But I am well and I hope you all are too! It's uncanny that I got an email recently from the author of today's feature book, Ronlyn Domingue, who I "met" through the first book in this trilogy. I loved that first book that the second made its way to me ... and now, four years later, the third and final book is now here!

Ronlyn has a guest post (involves lots of paper and pens) and a GIVEAWAY. So please, join !

Links:

GIVEAWAY!

1 paper copy The Plague Diaries by Ronlyn Domingue
Open US

Leave a meaningful comment or question for Ronlyn in the comments below.
Tweet about this giveaway (leave link in comments).
Share on Facebook (leave link in comments). 

Get extra entries on Instagram:
Giveaway time! . . Do you love a good fantasy and magical story? I have read both of @ronlyndomingue's books in The Keeper of Tales Trilogy and now, book 3 The Plague Diaries is finally out! Don't worry, all books are standalone and can be read individually. Watch for her guest post on my blog soon (I'll post the link in my bio). . . To enter for a chance to win your own copy, all you have to do is follow the steps below. This giveaway is open US and ends on September 20th. The winner will be announced shortly after. 😃 This prize is kindly provided by the publisher. . . . To enter all you have to do is: ✅FOLLOW @guiltlessreader ✅LIKE this post ✅TAG two friends (or more) ✅For an extra entry, repost this pic with the hashtag #guiltlessreading ✅For an extra entry, leave a comment or question for Ronlyn on her guest post GIVEAWAY FACTS: -This giveaway is not affiliated with Instagram or sponsored. Book prize was provided courtesy of the publisher - Giveaway is open US only - Giveaway ends 20 September 2017 - Giveaway accounts are automatically disqualified
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{Guest Post & #Giveaway - US} Ronlyn Domingue: The Plague Diaries


Guest Post by Ronlyn Domingue Author of The Plague Diaries, Book 3 of The Keeper of Tales Trilogy

* affiliate link

I've had the pleasure of working with Ronlyn Domingue over the years promoting her trilogy, The Keeper of Tales. Way back in 2013, I stumbled upon her first book The Mapmaker's War in a Goodreads Giveaway. I was quite entranced by this story, with its folkloric storyline, its gorgeous descriptions and its unusual storytelling style. With my rave review, the author reached out to me in 2014 with her second book The Chronicle of Secret Riven. She even joined me for a guest post (where she revealed works that influenced her unique work). I am happy to be part of her journey as rounds up her trilogy with The Plague Diaries.

After Ronlyn published her critically acclaimed debut, The Mercy of Thin Air*, she squirreled away for several years to work on her next project. What was meant to be one epic novel became a trilogy that can be read in any order. The third book, The Plague Diaries, is out now—the story of a young woman named Secret, fated to release a plague to end an ancient pestilence. Her mythic call involves an arcane manuscript, a strange symbol, and a 1,000-year-old family legacy.

Today, Ronlyn shares how she wrote these books—a method used for thousands of years.

***

I’m a Virgo, which means my entire life is oriented to do things the most efficient way possible the first time.

Imagine my horror when I received instructions—a feeling more so than actual words—that I was supposed to write my second novel by hand.

“No,” I argued with the book, which wasn’t yet a book, just a bunch of notes and ideas. “That’s ridiculous. Why would I handwrite when it’s so much faster to type? I’ll just have to type it up anyway.”

The book would not relent. Every time I tried to write on a machine, nothing would come. Eventually, I squirreled away in a room with the curtains drawn. In two weeks, 26,000 words spewed forth, on letterpress-quality paper in purple ink.
Sideview of the Mapmaker's manuscript

My debut novel, The Mercy of Thin Air, was written on a computer. The words showed up, and tap tap tap, they appeared on the screen. It was easy to procrastinate on days I didn’t really want to write because I could go back to what I had, shifting commas, tweaking sentences, moving paragraphs.
I had no such luxury with this second book, scribed in bold ink. When I sat to write, I had picked up where I left off the day before. The manuscript became too messy if I tried to noodle with what I’d already written.

What surprised me most was the intimacy. I could sit curled up in a comfortable place and feel the words in a way I didn’t when I was at a keyboard. Mind, words, page, one world.

And it made sense, frankly. My second novel, which became the first in the trilogy, and the two books that followed aren’t set in our contemporary time. In The Mapmaker’s War: Book 1, Aoife, the mapmaker, lives in world similar to the Dark Ages. In The Chronicle of Secret Riven: Book 2 and The Plague Diaries: Book 3, Secret’s world resembles our Victorian era.

Pen and pencil ... 
In each book, there are references to pens and ink, tattered manuscripts and letters and old maps, things created through the direct touch of human hands.

All told, several purple pens, four boxes of Mirado Black Warriors, and a multitude of assorted other pencils gave their dark blood for these books.

In the end, I realized that handwriting the manuscripts didn’t take more time than if I’d typed them. These books had to be written the way they were. I could not impose my modern values on their world, their sense of time, and the way they chose to speak.

An attentive writer bows what the work demands and looks upon the resulting callous on one’s finger as a scar of honor.


About Ronlyn Domingue

Ronlyn Domingue is the author of The Chronicle of Secret Riven and The Mapmaker’s War, the first two books of the Keeper of Tales Trilogy. Her critically-acclaimed debut novel, The Mercy of Thin Air, was published in ten languages. Her writing has appeared in New England Review, Clackamas Literary Review, New Delta Review, The Independent (UK), Border Crossing, and Shambhala Sun, as well as on mindful.org, The Nervous Breakdown, and The Weeklings.

Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and ronlyndomingue.com.

About The Plague Diaries by Ronlyn Domingue*: The astounding, epic conclusion to the Keeper of Tales Trilogy brings together the cryptic prophecy in The Mapmaker's War and the troubling mysteries in The Chronicle of Secret Riven--leading to an unforgettable reckoning between lies and truth. We are all born made of gold. Secret Riven--the mystically gifted heroine who now represses her uncanny telepathic power--works for the mysterious magnate Fewmany as an archivist in his private library. There, she stumbles upon the arcane manuscript that had vanished following her mother's untimely death. She suspects the manuscript contains a profound secret, and she is yet unaware of its link to a thousand-year-old war and her own family's legacy. The tasks before her are clear: Secret must finally learn what Fewmany wants from her as well as the meaning of a strange symbol she's dreamed of since childhood. At last, she must confront the questions haunting her and depart on a quest to find the truth about herself, her dead mother, and her fate--to unleash a Plague of Silences meant to destroy, and transform, the world as all have known it. A dazzling, genre-bending masterwork, The Plague Diaries illuminates the power of our choices, the scars they leave, and the wounds they heal. 

Links:


GIVEAWAY!

1 paper copy The Plague Diaries by Ronlyn Domingue
Open US

Leave a meaningful comment or question for Ronlyn in the comments below.
Tweet about this giveaway (leave link in comments).
Share on Facebook (leave link in comments). 

Get extra entries on Instagram:
Giveaway time! . . Do you love a good fantasy and magical story? I have read both of @ronlyndomingue's books in The Keeper of Tales Trilogy and now, book 3 The Plague Diaries is finally out! Don't worry, all books are standalone and can be read individually. Watch for her guest post on my blog soon (I'll post the link in my bio). . . To enter for a chance to win your own copy, all you have to do is follow the steps below. This giveaway is open US and ends on September 20th. The winner will be announced shortly after. 😃 This prize is kindly provided by the publisher. . . . To enter all you have to do is: ✅FOLLOW @guiltlessreader ✅LIKE this post ✅TAG two friends (or more) ✅For an extra entry, repost this pic with the hashtag #guiltlessreading ✅For an extra entry, leave a comment or question for Ronlyn on her guest post GIVEAWAY FACTS: -This giveaway is not affiliated with Instagram or sponsored. Book prize was provided courtesy of the publisher - Giveaway is open US only - Giveaway ends 20 September 2017 - Giveaway accounts are automatically disqualified
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#BookmarkMonday: Unique Aussie Banksia bookmark


I couldn't stop clicking around in the Mods on Pods* Etsy Shop. Everything is made from the Banksia seed pods and look just how beautiful this bookmark is! Banksia grows in the bush of Australia -- so if you're looking for something distinctly Australian, I think you should pay this little shop a visit.

*Affiliate link

What do you think of this bookmark? Aye or nay?



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#BookmarkMonday is a weekly meme that started in 2009. Link up your bookmark below! Don't forget to share your love for bookmarks, whether yours or you dream of making them yours
  • Post about it on your blog / Twitter / Pinterest / Instagram and link up below.
  • If you're on Instagram please look me up: @guiltlessreader) tag me so I can comment!
  • Share your pic with the #BookmarkMonday hashtag on Twitter so I can go check it out! 
  • If you'd like to post on the #BookmarkMonday Pinterest Board, shoot me an email at readerrabbit22 at gmail.com and I'll add you as a contributor.

Link Up HERE!

#Friday56 &BookBeginnings: White Teeth


Early in the morning, late in the century, Cricklewood Broadway. At 06.27 hours on 1 January 195, Alfred Archibald Jones was dressed in corduroy and sat in a fume-filled Cavalier Musketeer Estate face down on the steering wheel, hoping the judgement would not be too heavy upon him.
- p. 3

For Friday 56:
Both women were momentarily embarrassed at what they were wearing, but, looking at each other gained confidence.
- p. 56


About White Teeth by Zadie Smith*:  On New Year's morning, 1975, Archie Jones sits in his car on a London road and waits for the exhaust fumes to fill his Cavalier Musketeer station wagon. Archie—working-class, ordinary, a failed marriage under his belt—is calling it quits, the deciding factor being the flip of a 20-pence coin. When the owner of a nearby halal butcher shop (annoyed that Archie's car is blocking his delivery area) comes out and bangs on the window, he gives Archie another chance at life and sets in motion this richly imagined, uproariously funny novel.

Epic and intimate, hilarious and poignant, White Teeth is the story of two North London families—one headed by Archie, the other by Archie's best friend, a Muslim Bengali named Samad Iqbal. Pals since they served together in World War II, Archie and Samad are a decidedly unlikely pair. Plodding Archie is typical in every way until he marries Clara, a beautiful, toothless Jamaican woman half his age, and the couple have a daughter named Irie (the Jamaican word for "no problem"). Samad —devoutly Muslim, hopelessly "foreign"— weds the feisty and always suspicious Alsana in a prearranged union. They have twin sons named Millat and Magid, one a pot-smoking punk-cum-militant Muslim and the other an insufferable science nerd. The riotous and tortured histories of the Joneses and the Iqbals are fundamentally intertwined, capturing an empire's worth of cultural identity, history, and hope.

Zadie Smith's dazzling first novel plays out its bounding, vibrant course in a Jamaican hair salon in North London, an Indian restaurant in Leicester Square, an Irish poolroom turned immigrant café, a liberal public school, a sleek science institute. A winning debut in every respect, White Teeth marks the arrival of a wondrously talented writer who takes on the big themes —faith, race, gender, history, and culture— and triumphs.

*** 

I'm a Zadie Smith noob. I've seen her books around and heard raves and of course, now I want in on the fun!

Have you read any Zadie Smith? Any book recommendations for me?


*Affiliate link

#BookmarkMonday: Harry Potter in mere leather


I don't think I could every get tired of Harry Potter. Ukraine company Mere Leather* on Etsy preys upon Potterheads in the nicest possible way with these amazing handmade leather corner bookmarks that any Harry Potter fan would love to own. I couldn't choose from the three but have a special affinity for Harry's eyeglasses.

*Affiliate link

Which design do you like most? Why?



Guiltless Reading

Generate your button code

#BookmarkMonday is a weekly meme that started in 2009. Link up your bookmark below! Don't forget to share your love for bookmarks, whether yours or you dream of making them yours
  • Post about it on your blog / Twitter / Pinterest / Instagram and link up below.
  • If you're on Instagram please look me up: @guiltlessreader) tag me so I can comment!
  • Share your pic with the #BookmarkMonday hashtag on Twitter so I can go check it out! 
  • If you'd like to post on the #BookmarkMonday Pinterest Board, shoot me an email at readerrabbit22 at gmail.com and I'll add you as a contributor.

Link Up HERE!
·
OLDER
© guiltless readingMaira Gall