Welcome, one and all, to our NIGHT STUDY blog tour post! Read on to find out more about the sequel to SHADOW STUDY, including an interview with author Maria V. Snyder, and a giveaway (open internationally)!
About NIGHT STUDY
Release Date: January 26, 2016
Ever since being kidnapped from the Illiais Jungle as a child, Yelena Zaltana's life has been fraught with peril. But the recent loss of her Soulfinding abilities has endangered her more than ever before. As she desperately searches for a way to reclaim her magic, her enemies are closing in, and neither Ixia nor Sitia is safe for her anymore. Especially since the growing discord between the two countries and the possibility of a war threatens everything Yelena holds dear.
Valek is determined to protect Yelena, but he's quickly running out of options. The Commander suspects that his loyalties are divided, and he's been keeping secrets from Valek... secrets that put him, Yelena and all their friends in terrible danger. As they uncover the various layers of the Commander's mysterious plans, they realize it's far more sinister than they could have ever imagined.
About SHADOW STUDY
Release Date: February 24, 2015
Once, only her own life hung in the balance…
When Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. She survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia.
Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands—and protect her relationship with Valek.
Suddenly, though, dissent is rising. And Valek’s job—and his life—are in danger.
As Yelena tries to uncover her enemies, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked.And now she must find a way to keep not only herself but all that she holds dear alive.
About the Author
Maria V. Snyder changed from being a meteorologist to a novelist in 1995, when she began writing to keep her sanity while raising two children. Since then, she has published numerous freelance articles in magazines and newspapers, and teaches fiction-writing classes at the local college and area libraries. The classes give her the wonderful opportunity to encourage fellow writers, and to keep improving her craft.
Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Maria always had a fascination with big storms. Dreaming of chasing tornados, Maria earned a bachelors of science degree in meteorology at Penn State University. But she discovered, much to her chagrin, that forecasting the weather wasn't one of her skills. In order to chase tornados you had to predict where they might form. Creating fantasy worlds where she has complete control of the weather was more agreeable to her.
Maria's research on food-tasting methods with an expert chocolate taster, her husband, turned out to be a delicious bonus while writing Poison Study.
Maria has a brown belt in Isshinryu Karate, and enjoys playing volleyball and the cello. Traveling in general and via cruise ship in particular are her biggest distractions from writing. Maria has traveled to Belize, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and through the Panama Canal.
Maria lives with her husband, son, daughter and yellow lab, Hazelnut, in Pennsylvania where she is at work on more LUNA novels. She also earned a master's degree in writing fiction from Seton Hill University.
Readers are welcome to contact Maria at the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can find out more about Maria here:
Q&A with Maria V. Snyder
RNSL: The world of the Study series is so deep and wide now, how do you keep the details (about characters, plot, etc.) straight?
MVS: I have a couple things I do to help me keep all the details organized. For each of my novels, I have an old fashioned notebook where I write down all those details for the book, including the story's timeline and all my research notes. I also have an Excel spreadsheet that has details for all my characters from the books. That spreadsheet is a wonderful resource. I can't take any credit for that as Natalie, one of my readers, put it together for me. She also did one for each of my other series as well! The last thing I do is just refer back to the book. I keep a copy of all my books next to my computer.
RNSL: Authors are so connected to social media now. How much do you let fan reactions affect the decisions you make when you write?
MVS: I really enjoy interacting with my readers, but I let the story develop without worrying about their reactions. However, I do think about them when I'm writing. I smile and think, “Oh, they're going to love this.” Or “I hope they don't kill me over this.” :) And I did write more Study books for them.
RNSL: From your first book to this one (your 14th novel!), has your writing style or method changed, and how?
MVS: I don't think my style has changed, but I have started writing from multiple POVs in my books and doing third person because I wanted a challenge and I really like showing what's going on with the other characters in the books. My method is about the same. I still use the notebooks. However, when my kids were little, I wrote when they were at school. Now, I write at night and love it.
RNSL: We love hearing about the things that inspire you from the real world that end up in your Ixia/Sitia stories. Has Night Study added any new hobbies or interests to your list?
MVS: I've learned quite a bit about plants, including cross breeding and grafting techniques for Night Study. It's doubtful the knowledge will help me as all my attempts to grow green things has resulted in failure.
RNSL: What's your preferred writing fuel right now?
MVS: Decaffeinated English Breakfast tea for when I'm writing and then, if I hit my word count for the evening, a glass of red wine to celebrate.
RNSL: You dropped the biggest bombshell at the end of Shadow Study! Do you think it accomplished what you set out to do?
MVS: I knew I wanted to reveal that bombshell near the end of the novel. I really didn't plan to make it the very last line, but when I reached that point in the story, it felt right. And I think it was fun for my readers since it's not quite a cliff-hanger—the main plot/story was resolved, but it gave them something they'd been hoping for and something to think about while waiting for Night Study.
RNSL: Will the next Study book be the last, and if so, how do you feel about the series ending/rolling along?
MVS: Dawn Study will be the last for Yelena and Valek. Yelena's journey was the focus of the first three books and these new ones are a bit more focused on Valek's journey. And that's a good thing—I think writing more about them I would have to raise the stakes so much it would be like “jumping the shark.” There are a few characters—Reema, Teegan, Fisk, Heli, and Quinn—that I would like to explore more and might write a few books about them—no plans yet as I usually like a break and a chance to do something new before I return to a world.
RNSL: The cover changes in tone from Shadow Study to Night Study--I like them both, but prefer the direction Night Study is going in. Can you discuss the changes?
MVS: Yes I can! The reason is I had more input into Night Study's cover! I expressed my concerns about Shadow Study's US cover to my new editor—I really wished they hadn't put a model on the cover—not that she wasn't beautiful, but her makeup was so over the top, it appeared as if she had a black eye! So when they were designing Night Study, I was able to give the art department more feedback.
RNSL: Were there any other book or series ideas percolating while you worked on Night Study? If you can't share details, can you discuss what it's like for you to have multiple ideas vying for attention?
MVS: I generally concentrate on one book or story at a time—I can't work on a short story in the afternoon and a novel at night. I have to stop one to work on another. However, I do get ideas and I write them down when they come to me. When I have time between projects, I explore those ideas. Right now I don't have any set plans for what's next, which is kind of scary! I have three different novel ideas and I'll see which one of those my publisher will be interested in (if any!).
6 Winners will receive a finished copy of NIGHT STUDY, US Only.
4 winners will receive a finished copy of NIGHT STUDY, International.
Blog Tour Schedule
1/18/2016- Dark Faerie Tales- Interview
1/19/2016- The Bibliophile Chronicles- Review
1/20/2016- Two Chicks on Books- Guest Post
1/21/2016- The Moonlight Library- Review
1/22/2016- Read Now Sleep Later- Interview