This post is dedicated to the awesome author Sarah-Jane Lehoux and her Sevy Series. I first met Sarah-Jane through Facebook and was honoured to be asked to host a guest post and Giveaway by her as part of her Sevy Series Blog Tour. She's giving away an entire ebook set of The Sevy Series, which I think is stupendous - something not to be missed! See the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post for your chance to enter.
I decided to read the first book in this series, Thief, and write a review before you get to Sarah-Jane's guest post. Don't worry though - I won't be giving away any spoilers!
Author Bio:Sarah-Jane Lehoux has always had a passion for storytelling. From grade school tales of cannibalistic ghosts, to teenaged conversations with God, to her rebellion against adulthood with fantasy kingdoms and fairy magic, she has attempted to share her love of the quirky and unconventional with her readers.
She currently resides in Southern Ontario with her husband and her horde of Machiavellian cats. In addition to her own writing, Sarah-Jane works as an editor and freelance cover artist.
Happily Ever After Doesn't Come Without a Price
In the crumbling city of Eloria, there are two indisputable facts. First, everyone has a dream. Secret, seemingly unattainable, altogether irresistible, it is the kind of dream that aches and, at times, burns. For most, it will forever remain a teasing enigma, but there are those for whom dreams grow into obsession. Which brings us to the second indisputable fact: everyone has a price. Protestations of morality have little meaning when confronted with the all-consuming passion of the soul. Better judgment is pushed aside for the chance to obtain the unobtainable. The only question remaining is just how much a person is willing to sacrifice in order to get what they want.
Sevy has always been a quick study in the wicked ways of Eloria. Since childhood, she has eked out a living for herself with the help of her sticky fingers and her indomitable spirit. She has no qualms about taking what she desires, and when the unrequited love of her life is mysteriously murdered, Sevy will stop at nothing to get him back. Elvish black magic, necromancy and demonic pacts are of little consequence if it means she can once again have her beloved at her side. But is she willing to murder her only friend to get the job done?
Is there a line that even this selfish, self-proclaimed bitch is not prepared to cross?
My Review of Thief by Sarah-Jane Lehoux
Sevy is a young girl who lives on the streets of Eloria, eking out a living by stealing, doing whatever she can to stay alive. Street-wise and cunning, Sevy knows a mark when she sees one – but she also knows a pimp. Her best and only friend Trena has taken up with a gorilla whom Sevy knows is going to exploit her – but all Trena can see are the benefits. Sevy is determined to steal enough so she can rescue Trena from the ape’s clutches, but her life takes an unexpected twist when the mark she targets turns out to be even savvier than herself. Her growing infatuation with this man, and his apparent attraction to her, throw Sevy into the deepest love, and also the deepest fury, she has ever known. Demons and black elvish magic combine in one of the most treacherous and evil-bitch antagonists I have ever encountered in a fantasy novel . It’s doubtful that even Sevy’s smarts and hard-won skills can save the lives of her lover and friend.
There is plenty of action, tension and emotion in this fast-moving fantasy novel. You won’t be able to draw your breath!
Ok - now that you've heard what I think of Thief, it's time to hear from the author herself. In this post, she talks about how she finds the right balance in her writing.
Over to you, Sarah-Jane!
How Much Is Too Much?Gratuitous. Sounds like it should be a good thing. I mean, free stuff is awesome, right? Wrong. When it comes to storytelling, being gratuitous will cause more harm than good.
What kind of gratuitousness am I talking about? Anything. Everything. Sex. Violence. Cursing. Eating. Sleeping. Whining. Whatever. Do a quick Google search on the definition. Go on; I’ll wait.
Back? Okay, see the third meaning? “Unnecessary or unwarranted.” That’s what I’m talking about. We’ve all read books/seen movies where there has been a scene that makes us roll our eyes and wonder why anyone thought it was a good idea to add it in. Sex for the sake of sex, violence for the sake of violence, cutesy, lovey-dovey behavior for the sake of being cutesy….all it does is turn the reader off and tarnish what was otherwise a great tale.
The universe I’ve created with The Sevy Series has been described as gritty and realistic. I don’t shy away from hard subject matter, but I like to think that I come at each scene, even the R-rated ones, with some class. After I finish the first draft, a HUGE part of the editing process is seeking out the unnecessary, the out of place, the gratuitous, and reworking until they fit into the vision I have for the story.
Sure, sometimes bucket loads of gore is called for—Taratino wouldn’t have a career without them—but for most stories and story-tellers, less will always be more. It’s all about finding the right ratio between being authentic to your universe and being respectful to your readers.
Great post, Sarah-Jane, thank you!
Below are the covers and blurbs for Shades of War and Masquerade, Books Two and Three in the Sevy Series:
Shades of War:
There is More Than One Road to Redemption
Sometimes the past can't be forgotten. Sometimes the truth refuses to be buried. And sometimes the dead won't stay dead.It began as a simple request: Journey to the Northern Jungles and bring a wayward son back to the safety of his farm and family before the racial tension that is building between humans and dark elves erupts into civil war. But life is never simple for Sevy, and she soon finds herself entangled in a bloody battle of good versus evil, love versus hate.Old friends and enemies reunite, familial bonds are broken, and loyalty is tested. And in the midst of the steamy, sultry jungles, the ghosts of a serial killer's victims come out to play. Sevy, as petulant and irascible as ever, must overcome her personal demons in order to expose a madman and bring peace back to the kingdom. But just how much of her sanity must she sacrifice to help her friends? And how can she save anyone when she can't even save her own soul?
Masquerade:Never Trust a Liar, especially when they're telling the truth.
Starting over isn’t easy, especially when the world isn’t ready for you to change. Sevy, thief turned assassin turned mercenary, isn’t having any fun adjusting to a normal, law-abiding life. Luckily for her, an old partner in crime arrives with an irresistible proposition: a getaway to a tropical island, an adventure of a lifetime, and an amazing friendship ready to blossom into an even more amazing romance.Things are looking up for Sevy. That is, until a pack of maniacal fairies with a taste for human flesh arrive on the scene.
Now she must unravel a web of magical intrigue hidden behind the outwardly idyllic atmosphere of the islands of Belakarta. Nothing is as it seems, and no one can be trusted. Trapped under the spell of a handsome and mysterious stranger, Sevy must fight fairies and tricksters to regain her freedom.
Or spend an eternity as a sorcerer’s plaything.
The books look great, don't they? I certainly think so - which is why we're doing a fantastic Giveaway of an entire ebook set! Yes, that's right - the entire Sevy Series as an ebook set! See the Rafflecopter Giveaway widget below to enter.
And if you don't get lucky in the Giveaway, or you simply can't wait, here are the links to purchase the series on Amazon:
Shades of War http://www.amazon.com/Shades-War-Sevy-Sarah-Jane-Lehoux/dp/148485716X/ref=la_B003VH11VG_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1368296808&sr=1-4
<a id="rc-f0acc31" class="rafl" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/f0acc31/" rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a>
I am delighted to announce that the winner of the Sevy Series eBook Set Giveaway is: