Thursday, December 13, 2012

Crown of Phoenix Series in Review-Giveaway! {Online Book Tour}

Crown of Phoenix Series 

Presented by First Rule Publicity

Book One – The Night Watchman Express

Orphaned Miriam has always been terrified by the sound of THE NIGHT WATCHMAN EXPRESS as it hurtles by her house. The sound of the train gives her nightmares of an underground factory, and a laboratory where brutal experiments take place. 

During the day she has very different problems. Her new guardians, the Marchpanes, have arrived with their son, Simon, to live in Miriam's house. The Marchpanes are plotting to take over her dead father's business. 

As they are both strong willed and stubborn, Miriam and Simon develop an instant dislike for each other. They have to work together, however, in order to solve the mystery of what the Marchpanes are doing with Miriam's inheritance.

As they come closer to learning the truth, Miriam is kidnapped and put on THE NIGHT WATCHMAN EXPRESS, and Simon must try to rescue her. In doing so, he will have to confront his own parents and the evil forces behind them.

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Book Two – Devil’s Kitchen

In The Night Watchman Express, Miriam and Simon were kidnapped and thrown on the strange train... Now in Book Two of The Crown Phoenix series, they arrive at the terrifying destination known as Devil's Kitchen.

There they will face human experiments in a laboratory known as The Infirmary. 

Miriam will be forced to work in an underground factory.

Simon is held in a luxurious prison by jailers who are as beautiful as they are deadly...

And their courage will be tested to the breaking point.

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Book Three – The Lamplighter’s Special

Lizzie and her sister are forced to work in a huge manor and on a steamship to support their family. 

They are caught up in several mysteries:

The squire’s oldest son cannot leave the attic
An old typewriter seems to move time and space
A passenger hides in a secret room
A beautiful visitor is plotting against them

And Lizzie discovers that she has a strange, new ability.

She and her sister must discover the secrets of The Lamplighter’s Special before their enemy catches up with them.

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About The Night Watchman Express, The Devil's Kitchen, The Lamplighter's Special

Ever since my first taste of Steampunk which have to give a nod of approval at Kady Kross’s Steampunk Chronicles (The Girl in the Steel Corset, The Girl in the Clockwork Collar) and since then have an interest in any novels bearing Steampunk elements. The Nightwatchman Express when signed up for this Online Book Tour promised to have a stamp of Steampunk as well.

Later once began reading The Night Watchman Express knew with certainty had made a magnificent decision. Alison DeLuca twirls to vibrant life the life of young Miriam Pearson a millionaire’s daughter who soon loses her father. Her new guardians turn out to be greedy for her inheritance. They also bring along with them their son named Simon and Simon’s friend Neil. While Neil is nice the same doesn't apply to Simon. Simon and Miriam’s animosity soon surfaces adding to Miriam’s mounting new limitations to her privileged life. Good things don’t stay horrible for long with the arrival of Mana Postulate whose Miriam’s new governess.

Honestly of all the books out there The Night Watchman Express is perfectly marketed as a Steampunk adventure. It is most definitely a story of adventure with some very three-dimensional characters that are almost like they could be written out of real life. The characters because of that are extraordinary in engaging. Miriam is a favorite that grows and evolves. Simon is another favorite with his intelligent mind. Neil too with a kind manner he always holds. Finally there is Mana who is a firm but elegant governess. 

The Crown Phoenix series is a new favorite one! While hardly touches on any increasingly High Fantasy elements there are small glimmers of it. But know what makes it stand out is that we get a definite Gothic Steampunk adventure vibe from it.
Recommended alright for readers who like something new.
Overall: Amazing read!
Genre: Steampunk, Adventure

The Devil's Kitchen
Previously in the Night Watchman Express we unfortunately were witness to Simon and Miriam's kidnapping through The Night Watchman Express. In The Devil's Kitchen Simon and Miriam attempt to survive in different surroundings from their previous lives without losing hope. Mana and Neil now reunited are out trying to rescue Miriam and Simon from their horrendous fates. Yet, danger looms dangerously everywhere especially with a new increase in consumption of a very nasty tonic by the Pearson Company. 

Alison DeLuca have by now realized what sets her writing apart and that is when you read whole passages no matter if they are not filled with great secrets or incredible occurrences is still filled with interesting moments. She just knows how to always keep the story going and adds fully to each of her books. It is a great quality to be found in an author. So much so that consider Alison DeLuca my favorite  author as of recently. One of my favorites and glad First Rule Publicity introduced me to her work.

The Devil's Kitchen brings Simon, Miriam, and Neil's adventures to a close from the evil of The Cantwells.  Yet it isn't the end since there is more! More in The Lamplighter's Special which would see a return to Lampala. Exciting most definitely!
Overall: Amazing read!
Genre: Steampunk, Adventure

The Lamplighter's Special

Have to apologize that have no review available but recently had my Kindle Fire HD on December 3, 2012 stolen and The Lamplighter's Special of all three books is the only one available from Kindle's Edition (e-book)  so couldn't finish reading. Therefore couldn't review.

Yet will say this from what read up to 20% it was pretty good with Miriam, Simon, and Neil much more grown up. Also instead of a focus on them we get a glimpse of Neil's long-lost family but especially his three sisters.

About the Author

AlisonDeLuca is the author of several steampunk and urban fantasy books.  She was born in Arizona and has also lived in Pennsylvania, Illinois, Mexico, Ireland, and Spain.

Currently she wrestles words and laundry in New Jersey.

Author Interview
Questions and Answers

1. What is something readers are sure to enjoy from reading your books?
If readers enjoy adventure and characters who slowly, against all odds, become friends, they’ll like the Crown Phoenix series. I didn’t make things easy for my little troupe of characters: Simon gets Stockhold Syndrome and falls in love with the person who is torturing him to death, Miriam is imprisoned underground and has to work for a horrifying sect that practices human experiments, Neil is lost at sea, and Mana – well, a lot happens to her as well.

These adventures cause the characters to grow (and grown together) in ways they never could have expected.

2. In your books, Steampunk is a big element present. What is your interest in it and when did you discover it?

I began reading Steampunk before it was called that, when I was 8. I loved Verne, Wells, and Conan-Doyle; my mother bought me their books in an Acme Supermarket promo and I was hooked.
Modern steampunk adds so many elements – more tech of course, with automotons and airships. One brilliant example is Infinity Bridge – you can see how the author played with time travel and sentient clockworks in that book.

Another lovely thing is the emergence of ethnic characters in steampunk books. (I think we have JK Rowling to thank for that – she quietly included people of color throughout her series.) As I wrote the Crown Phoenix book, I knew I wanted to include main characters who were from the islands.
Mana is my lovely governess from Lampala – she was dignified, intelligent, beautiful, and she had to face the overwhelming prejudices of the Edwardian era. That was difficult to write, but it had to be done.

3. What are some movies and or books that you’re anticipating, Alison?

Since I have an 8 year old daughter, I had to miss Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter. Yes, I really want to see that. Ditto Tintin – I am the only Tintin fan in my household, so I have to sneak my fix. I’m looking forward to seeing Oz, the Great and Powerful and The Hobbit – can’t wait for that! I loved that book when I was growing up.

Speaking of books, there are loads I want to read in 2013 – The Night Circus, Miss Pergrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and There are Spiders in this Book : 
Seriously, Dude, Don’t Touch It. The last one wins for the title alone.

4. The hard little things and easy things about writing in your opinion?

Hm. The hardest thing is being in the middle of a great scene and having to stop because the phone rings, or my kid wants a drink, or I have to pay bills … it’s difficult to go from my make-believe world or the real one at times.

The easiest thing is interacting with other writers and editors. Authors are, for the most part, lovely, supportive people. I’m overwhelmed by the level of support I've received from friends that I've never met in person.

5. What has really inspired you to write in general?

As a kid, I used to make up stories constantly – when I wasn't reading, that is. We moved a lot, and I didn't have a busy social life. Both parents worked, and my sister and I were latch key kids. So, we spent a lot of time on our own and had to invent our own amusement. Mine was making up stories.

6. On being an Author: What's your writing like for you?

I begin to write as soon as my kid gets on the bus. I love to spend a few hours in the morning writing a chapter or so, after I do a blogpost to get warmed up. Then I take care of admin chores – helping other authors, taking care of my writing collaborative website, and – if I’m lucky – cleaning the house. It’s a very, very busy lifestyle, but I couldn't imagine doing anything else.

7. On you as a regular person: What are your favorite pastimes?

I love to read, obviously, but I also love to ski. When I’m on the slopes, everything disappears except the snow and my skis. I’m a big baker, so I’m gearing up to bake hundreds of cookies for the season.

And when I’m not busy, reading is the top of my list. A beach or a roaring fire and a new book equals pure heaven.


 Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for review from First Rule Publicity from the author as part of a virtual book tour. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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