Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Guest Post with Kendare Blake

Photo Content from Kendare Blake

Kendare Blake is an import from South Korea who was raised in the United States by caucasian parents. You know, that old chestnut. She received a Bachelor's degree in Business from Ithaca College and a Master's degree in Writing from Middlesex University in London. She brakes for animals, the largest of which was a deer, which sadly didn't make it, and the smallest of which was a mouse, which did, but it took forever. Amongst her likes are Greek Mythology, rare red meat and veganism. She also enjoys girls who can think with the boys like Ayn Rand, and boys who scare the morality into people, like Bret Easton Ellis.


Print Length: 337 pages
Publisher: Tor Teen; 1 edition (September 10, 2013)
Publication Date: September 10, 2013
Sold by: Macmillan
Language: English


“Blake presents a gory, thrilling vision of the twilight of the gods, in all their pettiness and power, while letting readers draw their own messages and conclusions.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

“This new series from one of the best up-and-coming horror/suspense writers around updates Greek mythology but offers far more than a Percy Jackson retread. Blake's spunky and imaginative narrative illuminates the personalities of the gods, especially Athena, who's gone a bit punk and is endowed with wry humor.... This edgy first installment maneuvers forces into position; readers will want to stay tuned.” —Kirkus Reviews

“The gods' world, while contemporary, is violent and laced with bizarre circumstances and powers, but Cassandra's is a normal adolescence in spite of her clairvoyance. It is Cassandra's visions that align their two worlds, creating the series debut's ultimate drama and tension, which promises to play out in subsequent Goddess War adventures.” —Booklist

“This is Kendare Blake we're talking about, so people die, and there are terrible sacrifices. It's a great start and, of course, the cliffhanger ensures that I will be impatiently waiting for the sequel.” —USA Today

I love that you have a lot of humor and sarcasm in your books! I love laughing out loud and really loving a character's humorous side. Is that something that comes naturally with a character? Do you plan the amount of humor to include in a book? Do you ever cut some humor to keep a darker tone overall? 

It absolutely comes naturally. I didn’t think there would be much humor at all in Antigoddess, except perhaps the ironic kind. But then Hermes showed up. Irrepressible Hermes. And he managed to sneak it in, even in the most dire of situations. I don’t think this sort of thing can be planned, or forced. The character has to show up and speak naturally. Not all of them are going to be funny. Not everyone is funny. Everyone is funny sometimes, and to varying degrees, and so it goes with characters.

I’ve never written a scene and thought, “whoa, I need to lighten this up.” In fact, the scenes that are dialogue heavy are almost never changed. Because how can I change them? That’s what the characters said. It feels like rewriting history if I take the words out of their mouths and turn them around.

This sounds hokey I know, but characters are real people. They have their own histories and motivations, so when they speak, I never have to put the words in their mouths. This made it particularly difficult for ANTIGODDESS, being aware of the characters’ histories and motivations and knowing that many readers wouldn’t be. It was tough to walk that line, let them do their thing, and then keep it understandable through exposition and inference. But I hope I did okay!

If you could introduce one of your characters to any character from another book, who would it be and why?
It would be Athena and Anna. And then I would make snide comments about one to the other, so maybe we could find out who would win in a grudgematch.

What decade during the last century would you have chosen to be a teenager?
The one I was in, probably. I get the technology, but I also get to remember what it was like before that technology was really smooth.

1. Save my two classmates who died.
2. Skipped slightly less during my senior year. No wait. I’d skip the same amount.
3. Tell all my friends their boyfriends blow.
4. Get to know all different people.
5. Not get locked in that locker, that one time. My fault, for getting in, in the first place.
6. Nominate my brother for homecoming queen.
7. Savor the cafeteria flavor. It wasn’t all bad.
8. Talk to my teachers more. Get to know what they really wanted me to learn.
9. Take my driver’s test fewer times. Like way fewer.
10. Ride the bus more.

The Goddess War begins in Antigoddess, the first installment of the new series by acclaimed author of Anna Dressed in Blood, Kendare Blake. 

Old Gods never die…

Or so Athena thought. But then the feathers started sprouting beneath her skin, invading her lungs like a strange cancer, and Hermes showed up with a fever eating away his flesh. So much for living a quiet eternity in perpetual health.

Desperately seeking the cause of their slow, miserable deaths, Athena and Hermes travel the world, gathering allies and discovering enemies both new and old. Their search leads them to Cassandra—an ordinary girl who was once an extraordinary prophetess, protected and loved by a god.

These days, Cassandra doesn’t involve herself in the business of gods—in fact, she doesn’t even know they exist. But she could be the key in a war that is only just beginning.

Because Hera, the queen of the gods, has aligned herself with other of the ancient Olympians, who are killing off rivals in an attempt to prolong their own lives. But these anti-gods have become corrupted in their desperation to survive, horrific caricatures of their former glory. Athena will need every advantage she can get, because immortals don’t just flicker out.

Every one of them dies in their own way. Some choke on feathers. Others become monsters. All of them rage against their last breath.

The Goddess War is about to begin.

Kendare Blake's Antigoddess is a creatively fresh take on mythological gods and goddess set in the modern world. Athena, the goddess of wisdom, is slowly being consumed and transforms into a bird from the inside out since her sacred animal is the owl. Her brother Hermes is also on a steady pace towards his demise. They have no clue as to why all gods are beginning to die but are determined to get some answers. Trying to find the cure of their own eradication, it leads them to Cassandra Weaver, a young girl in New York that has the gift of prophecy. She ultimately holds the answers in saving the gods, but she doesn't even know it. Along with Odysseus, Athena and Hermes must join up with Cassandra in order to fight death.

Readers who are fans of mythology or even ones who have the bare basics of it will find the story to be captivating. It is safe to say that gods are suppose to be immortal, but just the thought of them dying for some unknown reason presents a magnetic appeal that is difficult to pull apart from. The interactions of the gods were beautifully written. Their own way of slowly dying was excruciating to read especially the moments that Athena pulled one of her feathers out. The book does contain some graphic scenes but it has become one of Blake's signature style (Anna Dressed in Blood).

The originality that this book delivers brought out well-detailed and amazing writing about mythology. Blake's direction for the plot is solid and it is evident that there is so much more to the story. Gods and goddesses have always been the same in most mythology books. Blake manages to give them complex personalities that somewhat gives them some human traits. The thought of losing their invincibility never crosses our mind but Blake puts them in situations that degrades their statuses. Facing death, these gods and goddesses are now more emotional, vulnerable and liable. Blake's story tells us a pivotal lesson about humanity.

Diving into this book without any background of mythology will not get you lost in the shuffle. Blake provides the right amount of details to give readers enough that don't feel too overwhelming. The ending culminates to a pivotal epic scene that only opens up a doorway for more to come. The Gooddess Wars series is one that many readers will adding to their "can't wait to read" list.

You can purchase Antigoddess at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you KENDARE BLAKE AND TOR for making this giveaway possible.
3 Winners will receive a Signed Copy of Antigoddess by Kendare Blake.
5 Winners will receive a Surprise ART Bookmark by James Vallesteros.
September 25th Wednesday JeanBookNerd REVIEW & GUEST POST
September 26th Thurs
day Book Scents EXCERPT
September 27th Friday Sassy Book Lovers SPOTLIGHT
September 27th Friday I am Reader SPOTLIGHT
September 28th Saturday Beneath the Cover REVIEW
September 29th Sunday The Book Addict GUEST POST
September 29th Sunday Magic of Words EXCERPT
September 30th Monday Ya-aholic REVIEW
September 30th Monday Word Spelunking THIS OR THAT
October 1st Tuesday Annie Brewer Writes MUSIC PLAYLIST 

October 2nd Wednesday Sabrina’s Paranormal Palace REVIEW & FAVORITE THINGS
October 3rd Thursday Rose’s Book Corner DREAM CAST TENS LIST
October 4th Friday Fiction Freak INTERVIEW
October 5th Saturday TTC Books and More REVIEW
October 6th Sunday Tsk Tsk What to Read REVIEW & TENS LIST
October 7th Monday Me, My Shelf and I REVIEW
October 8th Tuesday Chapter by Chapter REVIEW
October 8th Tuesday James Vallesteros ARTWORK


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