Goodreads Sweepstakes: Long Black Curl by Alex Bledsoe

Long Black Curl by Alex BledsoeAbout Long Black Curl: Long Black Curl: a brand-new tale in Alex Bledsoe’s acclaimed urban fantasy series, where magic is hidden in plain sight and age-old rivalries simmer just beneath the surface

In all the time the Tufa have existed, only two have ever been exiled: Bo-Kate Wisby and her lover, Jefferson Powell. They were cast out, stripped of their ability to make music, and cursed to never be able to find their way back to Needsville. Their crime? A love that crossed the boundary of the two Tufa tribes, resulting in the death of several people.

Somehow, Bo-Kate has found her way back. She intends to take over both tribes, which means eliminating both Rockhouse Hicks and Mandalay Harris. Bo-Kate has a secret weapon: Byron Harley, a rockabilly singer known as the “Hillbilly Hercules” for his immense size and strength, and who has passed the last sixty years trapped in a bubble of faery time. He’s ready to take revenge on any Tufa he finds.

The only one who can stop Bo-Kate is Jefferson Powell. Released from the curse and summoned back to Cloud County, even he isn’t sure what will happen when they finally meet. Will he fall in love with her again? Will he join her in her quest to unite the Tufa under her rule? Or will he have to sacrifice himself to save the people who once banished him?

Enter for a chance to win here!

(Ends May 1)

Also, don’t forget to check out our other sweepstakes!

The Hum and the Shiver eBook is Now on Sale for $2.99

The Hum and the Shiver by Alex BledsoeAlex Bledsoe‘s Long Black Curl, the latest in the Tufa novels series, is due out on May 26. This month we are making it easy to get started with the series by releasing the first ebook, The Hum and the Shiver, for only $2.99.*

About The Hum and the Shiver: Named one of the Best Fiction Books of 2011 by Kirkus Reviews, The Hum and the Shiver by Alex Bledsoe is an enchanting tale of music and magic older than the hills. . . .

No one knows where the Tufa came from, or how they ended up in the Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee. Enigmatic and suspicious of outsiders, the Tufa live quiet lives in the hills and valleys of Cloud County. While their origins may be a mystery, there are hints of their true nature buried in the songs they have passed down for generations.

Bronwyn Hyatt, a pure-blood Tufa, has always insisting on doing things her own way, regardless of the consequences. Even though Tufa rarely leave Cloud County, she enlisted in the Army to escape the pressures of Tufa life—her family, her obligations as a First Daughter, and her dangerous ex-boyfriend. But after barely surviving a devastating ambush that killed most of her fellow soldiers, Private Hyatt returns to Cloud County wounded in body and in spirit. But danger lurks in the mountains and hollows of her childhood home. Cryptic omens warn of impending tragedy, and a restless “haint” lurks nearby, waiting to reveal Bronwyn’s darkest secrets. Worst of all, Bronwyn has lost touch with the music that was once a vital part of her identity.

Now Bronwyn finds the greatest battle to be right here at home, where her obligations struggle with her need for freedom, and if she makes the wrong choice, the consequences could be deadly for all the Tufa. . . .

Buy The Hum and the Shiver today: B & N Nook | eBooks.com | Google Play | iBooks | Kindle | Kobo

*sale ends May 1

New Releases: 3/3/2015

The Burning Dark by Adam ChristopherFlip by David LubarThe Goblin Emperor by Katherine AddisonHell or Richmond by Ralph PetersJack Cloudie by Stephen HuntMadness in Solidar by L. E. Modesitt, Jr.Monster Musume Vol. 6 by OKAYADOThe Pumpkin Rollers and The Buckskin Lin by Elmer KeltonThe Sacred Blacksmith Vol. 7 by Isao Miura and Kotaro YamadaShipstar by Gregory Benford and Larry NivenTranshuman by Ben BovaUnwrapped Sky by Rjurik DavidsonWisp of a Thing by Alex BledsoeWords of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson

See upcoming releases.

Tor Authors Take the Ice Bucket Challenge

If you’ve been on social media at all lately, chances are you’ve seen the videos. Someone announces that they’ve accepted the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and promptly gets a bucket full of ice water dumped over their heads. The resulting expressions of surprise and frantic jumping around are great entertainment for those of us watching.

Three Tor authors have accepted the challenge, helping to promote awareness of ALS. We wanted to gather all three of those videos for you in one handy place, so you can enjoy watching Brandon Sanderson, Alex Bledsoe, and David Brin get a dousing!

Brandon Sanderson

First up, Brandon Sanderson, the author of Words of Radiance. After watching this, we’re not entirely certain Brandon’s actually human. But we love an author who can keep working, no matter what!


 
From Brandon’s blog:

Now, the point of this challenge is that you either donate $100 to the ALS Association, or you do the ice bucket thing and donate $10. As I did the ice bucket thing, we’re choosing to donate $10 to ALS, and instead give the $100 to the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund in the name of Sir Terry Pratchett. I figured it would be worthwhile to spread the love from this charity drive around.

Click through to read the rest, including who Brandon nominated for the challenge!

Alex Bledsoe

Next up, we have Alex Bledsoe, the author of both the Eddie LaCrosse series, and the Tufa novels. For the ALS challenge, Alex got a little help from his boys—who don’t exactly have perfect aim. Close enough, though!


 

Our favorite part? “No, you didn’t miss!”

David Brin

Our final video for this roundup features David Brin, the author of Existence. I have to say, I think the way David handles the challenge is almost…Shakespearean. And the replay at the end is great!


 

Edited to add:

Dan Wells

And we have another Tor author taking up the challenge! Dan Wells, the author of the John Cleaver series, has a whole group of kids available to dump some very cold water on his head.


 

So: who’s going to take the challenge next? Have we missed any of our authors participating? And, finally, find out more about the challenge, ALS, and how to donate on the ALS Association website.

Throwback Thursdays: The Bar Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Welcome to Throwback Thursdays on the Tor/Forge blog! Every other week, we’re delving into our newsletter archives and sharing some of our favorite posts.

Back in June of 2009, the first book in author Alex Bledsoe’s Eddie LaCrosse series, The Sword-Edged Blonde, published. To celebrate the start of this fun and exciting series, Alex explained in the July Newsletter that his priorities, in writing a fantasy novel, are a little…flipped from most authors’. We hope you enjoy this blast from the past, and be sure to check back every other Thursday for more!

By Alex Bledsoe

A man walks into a bar.

If this happens in a science fiction or fantasy novel, the author has his job cut out for him. Not only does he have to describe the bar physically, but also its patrons. They might include aliens, ogres, trolls or elves, all of which can have any number of permutations. Then the drinks have to be laid out, and the money system enumerated. When all that’s done, the author might have enough imagination left to finally describe the man who walked in.

I’m unusual as a fantasy or science fiction reader, in that the details of made-up societies, worlds and cultures hold far less interest for me than the people (I include non-humans in that term) who inhabit them. I remember listening in wonder to another well-regarded fantasy author describe the elaborate monetary system he’d designed, and for which so far he’d had no use. It’s something I could never do.

When I wrote The Sword-Edged Blonde, I wanted to pare it down to the things I, as a reader, cared most about: namely, the people. Anything that distracted from them, and from the reader’s emotional commitment to them, I either left out or minimized. For example, many fantasy characters have names that, if not literally unpronounceable, at least challenge the tongue; I named my hero Eddie LaCrosse. Eddie’s office is, in fact, above a bar, one that is no different in feel and atmosphere from any you might walk into today. Eddie uses swords that, like modern guns, have make and model names, and the people speak in rhythms, patterns and tones that don’t try to sound “otherworldly.” There’s no time spent digressing into societal details that don’t apply to the immediate situation; this is not to belittle authors who do that sort of thing well, it’s just something I neither crave as a reader or excel at as a writer.

I did invent one term. Eddie is essentially a private investigator functioning in an Iron Age world. In our world, PI’s are known by various, vaguely derogatory terms: shamus, dick, peeper, etc. I decided that Eddie’s reality needed a similar term, and came up with “sword jockey.” To me it rings with the same thinly-veiled contempt as “gumshoe” or “snooper.”

The Sword-Edged Blonde (and its upcoming sequel, Burn Me Deadly) have been called high-fantasy stories written as if they were Forties pulp detective novels. That’s exactly my intent, but it’s not just an ironic stylistic choice; rather, it’s a sincere attempt to let readers connect with the characters by letting as few things as possible get in the way.

So the man (or woman) who walks into a bar in Eddie’s world could, hopefully, be you. And you’d be right at home there.

This article is originally from the July 2009 Tor/Forge Newsletter. Sign up for the Tor/Forge newsletter now, and get similar content in your inbox every month!

New Releases 11/26/2013

See upcoming releases.

New eBook Bundle: Swords Are My Business by Alex Bledsoe

Swords Are My Business by Alex Bledsoe

Swords Are My Business, a collection of four Eddie LaCrosse Novels, releases today!

About Swords Are My Business: In 2007, Alex Bledsoe introduced the world to Eddie LaCrosse, the hard-boiled but soft-hearted detective known as a “sword jockey” who, for twenty-five gold pieces a day, plus expenses, will take on any case short of murder for hire. Like Philip Marlowe in shining armor or Sam Spade with a sword, Eddie goes down his mean medieval streets trying to walk the straight and narrow in a crooked, twisting fantasy world.

Over the course of four novels, LaCrosse has encountered dragons, pirates, sea monsters, goddesses, ghosts, and magic, all the while keeping his cool and doing what’s right.

In this collection you’ll receive the complete text of the first four Eddie LaCrosse novels.

The Sword-Edged Blonde
When a childhood friend, now a king, asks Eddie’s help in clearing his queen of a murder charge, Eddie’s long-buried past refuses to stay hidden.

Burn Me Deadly
Someone will go to any lengths, including torture and murder, to locate the last remaining dragon eggs.  But dragons aren’t real, are they?

Dark Jenny
A poisoned apple sets off political turmoil that threatens to destroy an entire Camelot-like kingdom, and take Eddie with it.

Wake of the Bloody Angel
Eddie searches for the vanished pirate Black Edward Tew and his legendary treasure, but even the help of a tough former pirate queen may not be enough to save him from what he finds.

Swords Are My Business also includes a sample of the fifth Eddie LaCrosse novel, He Drank, and Saw the Spider.

See upcoming releases.

New Releases 11/5/2013

AND

A Centaur’s Life Vol. 1 story and art by Kei Murayama

See upcoming releases.

Not at San Diego Comic-Con Sweepstakes

Tor Books is heading to San Diego Comic-Con!

We hope to see many of you there. Stop by Booth #2707 to say hi or to participate in one of our many events and signings.

But for those of you who couldn’t make it out to California, we wanted to offer you the chance to grab some of the same amazing swag and books that we’re promoting at #SDCC. To enter for the chance to win one of these five prize bundles, leave a comment on this post telling us one fabulous thing that you’ll be doing this week while you are #NotAtComicCon. Whether you’re battling Dragon Army, matching wits with Tyrion Lannister, or chauffeuring your kids to soccer practice, we hope that you have a wonderful week.

Here’s a look at the prize:

And here’s a list of what’s included in each prize bundle:

    • Ender’s Game movie poster
    • Ender’s Game T-shirt and cap
    • Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
    • The Way of Kings quote magnets
    • Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
    • Article 5 by Kristen Simmons
    • The Eternity Artifact by L. E. Modesitt, Jr.
    • The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan
    • The Eye of the World: The Graphic Novel: Volume 3 based on the novel by Robert Jordan, written by Chuck Dixon, and illustrated by Marcio Fiorito and Francis Nuguit
    • Forge of Darkness by Steven Erikson
    • Girl Genius Omnibus Volume One by Phil Foglio and Kaja Foglio
    • Halo: Glasslands by Karen Traviss
    • Homeland by Cory Doctorow
    • The Hum and the Shiver by Alex Bledsoe
    • The Human Division by John Scalzi
    • Hunters of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson
    • Ironskin by Tina Connolly
    • Johnny Hiro: Half Asian, All Hero by Fred Chao
    • London Falling by Paul Cornell
    • The Omen Machine by Terry Goodkind
    • River Road by Suzanne Johnson
    • Sea Change by S. M. Wheeler
    • The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga
    • Wild Cards I edited by George R. R. Martin

Plus, one winner will receive this display exclusive – a Redshirts booth poster!

Redshirts SDCC Booth Display Poster

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. You must be 18 or older and a legal resident of the 50 United States or D.C. to enter. Promotion begins July 18, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. ET. and ends July 22, 2013, 12:00 p.m. ET. Void in Puerto Rico and wherever prohibited by law. Please see full details and official rules go here. Sponsor: Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.