Friday, January 19, 2018

Blogtour: Cathadeus

Book Details:

Book Title: Cathadeus (Book One of the Walking Gates)

Author: Jeff J. Peters

Category: YA Fiction, 344 pages

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Wise Ink Creative Publishing

Release date: Dec 8, 2017

Tour dates: Jan 15 to Feb 2, 2018

Content Rating: PG-13 (fighting scenes)

Book Description:

It has been six hundred years since the Alchemists fused together men and beasts to form strong, mindless slaves. Now, their most vicious creations have attacked the mystical Walking Gates, slaughtering their Keepers and isolating their cities. Wounded in the brutal attack, Braxton Prinn’s mother is on the verge of death and he makes a desperate journey to find the reclusive elven master who can save her. But when he discovers an ancient magic, Brax is caught up in an even greater struggle and soon finds himself hunted for his power. Drawn into the chaos of an impending war and pursued by enemies on all sides, Brax must fight to save his mother and her race from slipping into darkness. Though his untamed magic may be the greatest threat of all . . .

What Readers are Saying about Cathadeus:

“Jeff J. Peters’ strong cinematic writing style allowed me to easily visualize the story and feel that I was right there alongside the characters.”

- Alison W.

“Jeff J. Peters’ writing is so smooth and easy to read – I can’t tell you how much of a pleasure it was…and how quickly you end up being drawn into the story because of it.”

- Amanda R.

“Cathadeus is the best kind of fantasy story - you get to learn along with a flawed main character while you get lost in a richly designed world. You can’t help but keep reading. A cleanly written pairing of characters you wish you could spend more time with and an enthralling world built around them. Cathadeus is the kind of story that plays perfectly off of your imagination, with characters grounded in reality to make it feel like you could really be there.”

- Ryan N.

“Jeff J. Peters definitely has storytelling skills...The story stayed on my mind when I wasn’t reading it. Young readers will be drawn in this imaginative story, while they relate to Braxton’s struggles with temper, insecurity, and young love. Cathadeus is dramatic, with an anxious tone—at times bleak, as the story keeps you wondering until the final battle if good will prevail.”

- Elizabeth C.

Buy the Book:

Read the Prologue

Review: Masterful storytelling! I loved the flawed characters, and the reality melds perfectly with the fantasy elements. It stays with you even after the last page, and I would gladly return to this world over and over!

Jeff J. Peters
Interview Questions for
Adventures Thru Wonderland

1. Who are some of your favorite authors?
Jeff: Tolkien would definitely be one of my top choices as he was my first introduction to fantasy. I also really like David Eddings’ Belgariad and Malloreon series, with his Belgarath story being one of my all time favorites. Other notable mentions are Terry Brooks’ early Shannara books and, of course, who doesn’t love J. K. Rowling and Harry Potter.

2. What is your favorite part of the writing process?
Jeff: Getting to create characters and events that are both interesting to read, and which share a greater idea, meaning or inspiration to others. Hopefully people reading Cathadeus will not only enjoy the adventure, but also gain something more from the overall experience.

3. If you could visit any world, where would you go first?
Jeff: Tough question. As much as I love fantasy, it can be a pretty harsh place to live in. So if I was just visiting, I’d probably choose Middle Earth, but if I was going to live there for an extended period, I’d select the Star Wars galaxy instead, and seek out a Jedi master.

4. Are you working on any other stories?
Jeff: I’m currently writing Sotchek, the second book in The Walking Gates series. This picks up a few months after the end of Cathadeus, and I’m focused on the first half of the story, with some later sections to tie in as well. I’m also writing brief sections of the third book, and have large portions of the story arc developed. Once I get the opening chapter for Sotchek polished a bit more, I hope to post it to my web site. I’ve received some terrific responses from my beta readers, so hopefully you’ll enjoy it as much.

5. If you could have brunch with any author, who would it be and what would you talk about?
Jeff: If I could go back in time, I’d probably select Tolkien, as I think it would be fascinating to talk with him about how he created his world and the various races that pretty much spawned the epic fantasy genre. If limited to present day, I’d select J. K. Rowling.

Sunlight touched the southern peaks of the Dragon’s Spine as Thrag completed his patrol. The morning was cold and snow still covered the ground. The exposed parts of the dwarf’s face were chilled and steam appeared whenever he breathed—but he didn’t care. He loved being in the mountains, and the sharp biting feeling on his rough skin was preferable to the heat in the mines.
Wiping the ice crystals from his beard, he lit his pipe and took a long draw before exhaling. The light crept into the clearing, and he turned to leave but stopped abruptly. A dozen yards away, barely visible in the snow, a dark shape broke the pristine white. Thrag covered his pipe and checked about. Convinced he was alone, he retrieved the small object and rolled it around in his hand, feeling the rough cuts from the crude instrument that shaped it. Even before he looked down, he knew what it was. A totem.
Moving quickly to the nearby river, he scouted its banks. He picked up a trail and followed it until he smelled their campfire. Two large, muscular beasts stood behind the flames and slightly to one side, another lying further back and to the left.
They occasionally entered the Spine to hunt, wearing totems for protection that never worked, and his kin always defeated them. There hadn’t been any significant intrusion in almost six hundred years—not since the Breath of the Dragon wiped out their valley.
“So what ya doing in the mountains?” Thrag mumbled to himself, studying their bull-like faces. They had furs and leather jerkins covering their human bodies, and their weaponry was too advanced for a hunting party. Sentries, he concluded. But for what?
He needed to find out and report in, and they were too dangerous to be left alone. Unstrapping his giant battleax from across his back, he loosened the throwing weapon in his belt. Clenching his jaw, he readied to charge, then stopped. He couldn’t see into the trees. Normally, he wouldn’t care, but this time he had to be sure. Someone had to report, and something about this already had his beard on edge.
Turning around, he put his back against the boulder where he hid and called. A long, peaceful sound echoed among the rocks. He knew the Mins would hear it, even though he was downwind, but he wasn’t worried—he’d been a ranger for more than sixty years and could imitate nature’s calls. His sound was strong and true, riding the wind between the mountain pines and craggy valleys before fading away. He repeated it a few more times, then waited. As expected, the Mins ignored it. Minutes passed, and he watched the trees. Then a branch moved. Against the wind. His companion was closer than he’d thought, as usual.
Time to go.
Thrag burst from the rocks, hurling his smaller ax at the Minotaur on the right as he sprinted across the clearing. The weapon hit the beast square in the forehead, felling him. The other Min grabbed its weapon and brayed loudly. Thrag leapt up onto a stump directly opposite the fire, using the smoke to obscure his approach, and launched himself at the beast. He came through the screen with his battleax held high above his head in both hands, yelling as he appeared. The creature raised its halberd to block the strike, but Thrag’s ax smashed into it, splitting the shaft in two. The Min stepped back to steady itself, but the dwarf wasn’t slowing. He landed in front of it, bringing his weapon around and striking diagonally across, hitting the Min below the knee and severing its leg. The creature bellowed a horrific call, falling onto its newly formed stump. The third Min was up now, a spear in hand and coming to the fight. It pulled its arm back preparing to skewer the dwarf, but a dark form hit it from behind, sending the creature hurtling past Thrag. The dwarf ignored it. He thrust the top of his weapon straight up, hitting the crippled Min under the chin and jolting its head back. Raising his battleax again in both hands, Thrag struck down with his formidable strength, burying the blade deep into the Min’s chest, killing it.
He turned to look for the remaining beast. It hung from the massive jaws of a giant, sleek, charcoal-gray leopard standing eye level beside him.
“About time you helped,” Thrag admonished, looking into his companion’s enormous eyes.
The leopard gently lay the dead Min down on the ground without making a sound and stared back at the dwarf.
Thrag rocked his head from side to side. “Well . . . thanks,” he said.
He cleaned his weapons and searched the camp, uncovering more tracks. Following them through the trees, he found another trail leading to the old ruins.
Crossing the flattened outer wall at dusk, Thrag hid among the long shadows and intricately carved broken stone buildings that had been cut from the mountain. He moved carefully between the fallen rocks, stopping at an open courtyard. Giant columns circled the perimeter, portions of the ceiling they once supported visible among the snow. Three heavily armed Mins stood in the center, their backs toward him, facing a man dressed entirely in black armor. Beyond them, two smaller servants waited, hoods covering their faces.
“. . . finish preparing yourselves. We attack at first light,” he heard the man say over the Mins’ heavy breathing.
It would take Thrag two days to return with reinforcements. Not enough time, he thought. He’d have to stop them himself.

He crept closer, then signaled to the leopard, and charged.

Meet the Author:

JEFF J. PETERS was born in South Africa and immigrated to the United States as a teenager, where he fell in love with all things fantasy. He obtained degrees in digital electronics and computer science and worked as an IT professional for more than twenty years. In 2014, he left his corporate position to focus full-time on writing. Cathadeus is his debut novel. He is currently working on the sequel.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Facebook

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