Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Blog Tour: Peacemaker Review and Author Interview!

Title: Peacemaker
Series:  Peacemaker #1
Author:  Eva Gerald
Publisher:  Shine Publishing
Pages:  250
Format:  PDF
Source:  A copy was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!
Maya Voland doesn’t want to spend her senior year in the cold, isolated town of Shine, Vermont. Reeling from the death of her father and the discovery that her life is a carefully constructed set of lies, Maya wants to escape to a place where she can be invisible.

The residents of Shine can’t let Maya leave. She’s too important to their cause. A manipulator by nature, Maya was born with an extraordinary ability to influence the emotions and actions of others. Shiners will go to great lengths to train her to use those gifts to further their agenda, before other, more sinister forces intercede.

Shea Knightly has been waiting most of his life for Maya to come back home to Shine. He, too, has powers of persuasion and he’s never encountered a girl who can say no to his stunning looks and overwhelming charm. He’ll pull out all the stops to bring Maya into the fold.

Now Maya must decide—is the intense attraction she feels for Shea reciprocated, or is he just feeding her more lies to draw her into the dangerous world of the Shiners? Even if there is something real between them, what price is she willing to pay to make his cause her own?
Find Peacemaker online!
My Review:  This book was like nothing else I'd ever read.  The idea and concept was really interesting and drew me in the moment I began reading.  I loved exploring the world that Maya and Shea lived in and it was a lot of fun seeing all the different sides of their abilities and what it meant for their future.  While reading, I couldn't help but ask myself if I would be willing to deal with the restrictions put on their lives if it meant be able to do what they did.  

Maya was a strong character and I found her reactions to what what happening to her realistic.  She was easy to sympathize with and very likable - like she could be anyone in the world.  And while she felt like that on the page, she still held her own in the story and didn't fall to the wayside.  She was stubborn and stood up for herself and others and often put what was right before what she wanted which I admired.  

Shea was drool worthy!  I really loved him (even though I really didn't like him at first).  He was a sweet guy with a big heart.  I was happy whenever he was in a scene - he just brought it to the life.  The progression of their relationship was a little fast but I enjoyed it all the same.  I wish their had been a little more explanation on whether they considered themselves partners or a couple.  They acted like a couple but Maya always seemed to deny it when anyone asked.  

The plot was good and held my attention throughout!  There wasn't tons of action until near the end but their was a lot of world building and explanation on exactly how this place worked.  It set up a good platform for the books that are going to come next in this series!  I'm really anxious to find out what happens next!

Four Cards

I'm so happy to be able to welcome the amazing author of this book to the blog today, Eva Gerald!  She was nice enough to answer some questions about her writing process, her book, and herself!  

1.   When did you first get into writing and why?  Was there a certain author or book that inspired you in your writing career? 

I have always loved to read and when it came to my own writing great books both intimidated and inspired me. The first book I wrote was a children’s book, which I wrote for my oldest child when he was one. Soon after that I dedicated myself to writing a novel. At the time I was reading a lot of historical romances and absolutely adored Julia Quinn, so I tried my hand at a regency romance. It was an utter failure because I spent so much time researching the time period and England in general that the story line became lost and I never finished the book. The experience taught me that I needed to write about things and places that I know and concepts about people’s characters that I really wanted to explore. That’s when Peacemaker was born.

2.  Are you a panster or a plotter?  What do you do when you have writers block?

Surprisingly, I think I’m more of a panster. Despite the fact that I’m a logical, linear thinker by nature, and a lawyer by trade, I find that my characters take me on their own journey. My best writing flows from just allowing the characters to lead me where they may rather than working from any kind of predetermined structure.

When writing is a struggle I take a shower or go swimming. For some reason the calming effects of water always brings out my creative side. If it’s a problem that can’t be solved with water, I put my writing away for a bit and when I come back to it, I usually have a new perspective and am feeling inspired.

3.                  When you sit down to write, do you have a routine you go through?

No, I don’t have time for a routine. Unfortunately, writing is a luxury for me that I have to fit in whenever I can. I usually write very late at night after my kids go to bed and I’ve caught up on work from my day job and the house work is done. I tend to write on my laptop in bed or on the couch. There really is no structure or routine to it.

4.  What's the most difficult part of the writing process for you?

When I write I have to force myself to move on with the book rather than get caught up in reworking one part over and over again until it’s just right. When I edit, I struggle with letting some words, paragraphs or pages go even when I know it’s what’s best for the book as a whole. Sometimes I become unreasonably attached to the words I write.

5.  Do you listen to music when you write?  If so, what was the song that inspired you the most when writing Peacemaker?

I don’t tend to listen to anything while I write because I try to focus all of my attention on my characters who are rambling away in my head. However, often times when I’m listening to music throughout the day it will get me thinking about my book and provide me with inspiration. I have a soundtrack on my website that includes some of the songs that inspired me while writing Peacemaker. But there is definitely one that stands out as the theme song of the book. Home by Phillip Phillips sounds like it could have been written for Peacemaker.

5.  Peacemaker is such a unique story that grabbed my attention from the moment I began reading.  How did you come up with the idea for it?

I’ve always been a people watcher and an observer of life. I also spent many hours of my childhood watching the news and programs like 60 Minutes as these were the only programs that my parents permitted on school nights. So I was introduced early on to both the wonderful acts of kindness and the atrocities perpetrated by people throughout the world. For as long as I can remember I have wondered what motivated people to commit such acts. I also developed a fascination about people who had the gift of convincing others to follow them, whether it was down the road of good or evil. Peacemaker explores these concepts that have long been banging around in my head.

7.  Maya is very easy to relate to and like!  Did you base her off of anyone you know in your life?  Do you see any of yourself in her?

Well, let me put it this way, my friends and family see a lot of me in Maya. I don’t think I realized that I was channeling my seventeen year old self while writing it, but to some extent I guess I was. I think when you write in first person, it is difficult to detach yourself completely and I did work hard to recall my emotional state as a teenager, to ensure that Maya’s responses to all that life threw at her were realistic. And perhaps we do share a tendency to be a little sarcastic at times. 

8.  Shea is absolutely swoon worthy - I think I have a new book boyfriend!  Was he an easy or difficult character to write?  Why?

Don’t tell my husband, but I have a bit of a crush on Shea too. He was probably my most difficult character to write. I think men are always more difficult for women to write realistically without simply writing them as our ideal fantasy. But Shea was particularly challenging because he is all about quiet strength. The book is written from Maya’s point of view so it was difficult to portray the depth of Shea’s emotions while still staying true to his character.

9.  How long did writing Peacemaker take from the initial idea to the final editing process? 

About three and a half years.

10.  I really enjoyed reading Peacemaker and am so anxious to get my hands on book two!  Anything you can tell us about it? 

I’m so glad you enjoyed it. I’m already getting a lot of pressure to produce book two so I promise it won’t take three and a half years to write. I’m hoping to have it out within the next year. Book two will explain more about the Bonumites and Maya’s role in the community. Maya’s relationship with Shea will be tested by forces both within and outside the community and she will continue her quest to save her father. Some unsettling facts about Fallon will be revealed and, of course, you’ll get to know Ben better.

This or That?

Tea or Coffee? Tea

Skittles or MnMs? M&Ms

Sweet or Salty? Both. My favorite guilty pleasure is to eat potato chips and double stuff Oreos together.

Vanilla or Chocolate? Chocolate

Romance or Action? Romance

Rain or Sun? Definitely sun

About the Author!

Eva Gerald is a mother of two beautiful, active boys and an in-house attorney for a small software company. Needing to fill her endless hours of free time, Eva decided to write a novel. Three short years later, Peacemaker was ready for publication. Just in case she was tempted to go to bed at a decent hour on a regular basis, she decided to make it a series and is diligently working on the next book.

Eva lives in upstate New York with her supremely tolerant and supportive husband and two boys.

Find Eva online!

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