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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Virtual Blog TOur, Guest Post & Giveaway ~ Sons of Devils by Alex Beecroft


About Sons of Devils

British scholar Frank Carew is in Wallachia to study the magic generator on nobleman Radu Vacarescu’s land. There, his party is attacked by bandits and his friends are killed. Pursued by a vampiric figure, he flees to Radu’s castle for help.

Unfortunately, this is precisely where the vampires came from. If allowed, they would feed unchecked and spread their undeath across the whole Earth, but Radu maintains a shaky control over them and keeps them penned in his tiny corner of the country.

As Frank recovers from his assault, Radu finds himself falling for the young man. But loving Frank and not wanting to lose him leaves Radu vulnerable to his demons’ demands. Can he bear to let them feed on the man he loves? Or must he give in to their blackmail and set them free to feast on his entire country?




Guest Post from Alex Beecroft
I really like the idea of steampunk – of recasting some of those amazing Victorian era stories with a more advanced technology, but a technology with an aesthetic appropriate to the time. I can definitely see the appeal of getting together an adventuring party of an English gentleman thief, an American cowboy, a Japanese samurai and an elderly French pirate. (If this sounds oddly specific, it’s because it comes from this Tumblr post.) And then putting them together on a steam-powered dirigible and setting them off to fight crime.




The major trouble with this, for me, is that I don’t really like the Victorians. That’s a swingeing condemnation. I’m sorry! But it’s true – I have a prejudice against the Victorians in a similar way to the prejudice I have against the Tudors. Somewhere in the back of my head I have the Tudors marked down as a bunch of torturers and the Victorians pigeonholed as uptight Imperialists.

So the genesis of Sons of Devils and Angels of Istanbul came when I wondered if you could do steampunk in the 18th Century. I’m not claiming the 18th Century was somehow morally superior – just that I like it better.

Getting the appropriate level of technology into an era that would have to be called Sailpunk was never going to be easy. So I decided to revive magic instead, and to treat magic as if it was a natural force that the people of the 18th Century were only just beginning to study and learn to control.

But if magic had been around from the beginning of history, continually and reliably being used, (a) history would have been a lot different and (b) people would already know at least the basics of how to control it. I needed a way to justify having it as a recent and unknown phenomenon – and that’s how the Arising came about. If the Atlanteans had found a way to harness magic and built an infrastructure to support it in ancient times, then it would have stopped working when Atlantis was drowned – and it would have started working again when Atlantis returned.

That allowed me to have a setting where history had been the same as our own until very recently. Where people had only just started to notice their magical talents and were still trying to work out how to use them. It left me at the very beginning of a magical revolution, where scholars in every country were suddenly scrambling to understand the underlying principles of the magical arts, but where very soon people would begin inventing magical forms of transport and combat.

I don’t know about you, but I was quite excited about Sultan Mahmud’s idea of using large, robust flying carpets as aerial gun platforms. Any country that was the first to develop magical air power would have a heck of a tactical advantage.

Of course, a sudden flooding of magic into the world is likely to have had further reaching ramifications that nobody could have foreseen, and so my world is also filled with magical/paranormal creatures who have had an influx of power and ambition. It’s probably not going to surprise any readers who know what I’m like that I hate to write in a universe that only has humans in it. There are no elves in the Arising universe so far, but I’ve only just begun to feel out the shape of it, so there may well be elves in future, if people want more after reading about the strigoi. I am happy to say it’s a universe ripe for expansion. Providing the vampires don’t take over the world, of course, and I’m not telling you now whether they do or do not.


About Alex Beecroft

Alex Beecroft is an English author best known for historical fiction, notably Age of Sail, featuring gay characters and romantic storylines. Her novels and shorter works include paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary fiction.

Beecroft won Linden Bay Romance’s (now Samhain Publishing) Starlight Writing Competition in 2007 with her first novel, Captain’s Surrender, making it her first published book. On the subject of writing gay romance, Beecroft has appeared in the Charleston City PaperLA Weekly, the New Haven Advocate, the Baltimore City Paper, and The Other Paper. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association of the UK and an occasional reviewer for the blog Speak Its Name, which highlights historical gay fiction.
Alex was born in Northern Ireland during the Troubles and grew up in the wild countryside of the English Peak District. She lives with her husband and two children in a little village near Cambridge and tries to avoid being mistaken for a tourist.

Alex is only intermittently present in the real world. She has led a Saxon shield wall into battle, toiled as a Georgian kitchen maid, and recently taken up an 800-year-old form of English folk dance, but she still hasn’t learned to operate a mobile phone.

She is represented by Louise Fury of the L. Perkins Literary Agency.

Connect with Alex:


Giveaway

To celebrate the release of Sons of Devils, one lucky winner will receive a $10 Riptide credit and one ebook from Alex Beecroft’s backlist! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on March 18, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!



9 comments:

  1. Maybe that's why I haven't read as much steampunk as I'd expect...

    vitajex(at)Aol(Dot)com

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    1. Me too! I blame having to read too much Charles Dickens at school.

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  2. I haven't read many steampunk but it is certainly a unique genre albeit complicated.
    humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com

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    1. I haven't read a lot of it either, to be honest. I should really try it before I dismiss it like this.

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  3. LOL! I like the idea of Sailpunk...I actually enjoy reading steampunk a lot, there is something about the mixture of mechanics and magic that makes it very special. I'm so looking forward to reading Sons of Devils! And I'm glad to know it is an open university which can continue growing...
    susanaperez7140(at)Gmail(dot)com

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    1. Thanks, Susana! I actually have another two books this size plotted out already, and a couple more sitting around in concept after that, but we'll have to see how these ones do before it's worth writing the next.

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  4. Congrats and thanks for the post. The book and cover look great. I love your stories, especially ones like this with historical aspects, like False Colors and Capt's Surrender. -
    TheWrote [at] aol [dot] com

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  5. Thanks for the post. I'd like to think that steampunk could exist in eras other than just Victorian. But maybe that's the very definition of the genre?
    legacylandlisa(at)gmail(dot)com

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