Friday, November 16, 2018

Visions of Zarua by Suzanne Rogerson - Book Blitz + Giveaway


Visions of Zarua
Two wizards, 350 years apart. Can they save the realm of Paltria from Zarua's dark past?





An ancient darkness haunts the realm of Paltria.
Apprentice wizard Paddren is plagued by visions of a city on the brink of annihilation. When his master dies in mysterious circumstances, the Royal Order of Wizards refuses to investigate.
Helped by his childhood friend, the skilled tracker Varnia, and her lover Leyoch, Paddren vows to find the killer.
The investigation leads Paddren down a sinister path of assassins, secret sects and creatures conjured by blood magic. But he is guided by a connection with a wizard from centuries ago - a wizard whose history holds the key to the horror at the heart of the abandoned city of Zarua. Can Paddren decipher his visions in time to save the Paltrian people from the dark menace of Zarua’s past?


Universal Purchase Link - Universal book link
 Visions of Zarua is only 99p for a limited time to celebrate the book birthday. 


Excerpt
Paddren is still trying to come to terms with his master’s death. It doesn’t help that the Royal Wizards refuse to admit Kalesh’s death is caused by something other than natural causes. Here Paddren is alone at Hawthorn cottage distraught after his master’s funeral...

Paddren rubbed his hands together and glanced at the study’s empty hearth. It was too much effort to get up and light the fire, so he huddled further into his cloak and reflected on Kalesh’s funeral earlier that afternoon.
He could still picture the old man’s benign face and recalled their first encounter when he was only seven years old. The wizard had caught him sketching a Nagra in his book instead of studying. When questioned, Paddren had confided that the terrifying creatures plagued his nightmares. Kalesh had smiled as he pocketed the drawing and promised to teach him how to banish his bad dreams. Soon after that, Paddren left Kranor Castle and moved into Hawthorn Cottage. The crude doodle was still pinned inside Kalesh’s journal.
As Paddren sat alone in the study, the irony struck him – that drawing of the Nagra had brought them together, now a Nagra of flesh and blood had torn them apart.
He swallowed the lump of emotion in his throat; he couldn’t afford to be sentimental if he wanted to find the wizard responsible for Kalesh’s murder.
Returning his attention to the journal spread out in front of him, Paddren flicked through the entries hoping to find some answers in his master’s musings. Seeing his own visions penned by Kalesh’s neat hand, Paddren’s exhausted mind teemed with unwanted images. His eyelids grew heavy and his head sagged against the desk as a vision reached out to claim him.
…He looked down at his wrist, seeing bright red blood pumping from the deep gash in his artery. Blood trickled down his hand and pooled around the hilt of the dagger clasped in his twitching fingers. He slashed the blade across his other wrist, though his weakened grip meant it took several sawing attempts for the artery to open. The dagger clattered to the floor. He lay back, and only then registered the presence of the wizards gathered around the bed, watching him, waiting for him to die…
Paddren pulled off the Royal Wizard’s gold band and checked his wrists - relieved to see it was only sweat dampening his skin. He shivered at the memory of the blade biting into his flesh. Rubbing his wrists, he contemplated the new vision. If Kalesh were still alive, they would’ve sat up all night recording every detail and discussing what it might mean.
The journal still sat in front of him. He closed the book and laid his hands on the leather-bound cover, picturing his master as he searched for a part of Kalesh’s essence imbued within the object. Anything that meant he wasn’t alone. All he felt was a dark, yawning emptiness where his master’s spirit would’ve been.
Paddren picked up the journal and disturbed the unopened letter hidden in its pages. It landed on his lap, the shaky script of the sender staring up at him. To Kalesh - Hawthorn Cottage.
A messenger had delivered the letter several days ago. He recognised the handwriting of the old wizard, Ogniss, and knew he should find the time to deliver news of Kalesh’s death to him in person.
Paddren hid both the journal and letter away, wishing he could banish them as easily from his mind. As he did, his hand brushed against the pouch of herbs stashed at the back of the desk drawer. He picked up the small drawstring bag, unleashing a waft of the astringent scent of fararoot, the crushed root that formed the main element in his vision-suppressing potion. It had taken months to perfect the dosage, and to add the right mix of purple lentah to counter the nausea it always induced. He longed to surrender to the welcome oblivion it would bring him, but he abstained to honour Kalesh’s memory. The old wizard had abhorred the use of anything that impeded Paddren’s visions. Maybe if he’d been stronger he could’ve learnt to harness the visions and found a way to give Kalesh the answers he’d been so desperate to find.
He shut the drawer and locked it, determined not to touch the herbs again. Instead, he would embrace the visions and hope they would somehow lead him to his master’s killer.
 



Author Bio –
Suzanne lives in Middlesex, England with her hugely encouraging husband and two children.
She wrote her first novel at the age of twelve. She discovered the fantasy genre in her late teens and has never looked back. Giving up work to raise a family gave her the impetus to take her attempts at novel writing beyond the first draft, and she is lucky enough to have a husband who supports her dream - even if he does occasionally hint that she might think about getting a proper job one day.
Suzanne loves gardening and has a Hebe (shrub) fetish. She enjoys cooking with ingredients from the garden, and regularly feeds unsuspecting guests vegetable-based cakes.
She collects books, loves going for walks and picnics with the children and sharing with them her love of nature and photography.
Suzanne is interested in history and enjoys wandering around castles. But most of all she likes to escape with a great film, or soak in a hot bubble bath with an ice cream and a book.

Social Media Links –


Giveaway – Win 3 x Paperback Copies of Visions of Zarua (Open Internationally)
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Share:

2 comments:

  1. Thank very much for taking part in Visions of Zarua's birthday blitz today.

    ReplyDelete