Monday, May 5, 2014

Book Spotlight + Giveaway: Fledgling by Nicole Conway



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What better way to make a Monday more bearable than an awesome tour stop? Especially when that tour stop features dragons! Today's spotlight is on Fledgling by Nichole Conway, a book that speaks to my Fantasy loving heart.

Can one boy stand between two kingdoms at war?

Jaevid Broadfeather has grown up as a wartime refugee, hiding from the world because of his mixed racial heritage. He feels his future is hopeless, until a chance encounter with a wild dragon lands him in Blybrig Academy—a place usually forbidden to anyone but the rich and royal. But Jaevid’s case is special; no dragon has voluntarily chosen a rider in decades, so the proud riders of Blybrig must begrudgingly let him join their brotherhood despite his bloodline. Lieutenant Sile Derrick, a sternly tempered man with a mysterious past, becomes his instructor and immediately takes a peculiar interest in Jaevid’s future.

While struggling through the rigorous physical demands of training, things begin to go awry. Jaevid witnesses the king’s private guards kidnapping Sile in the dead of night. When none of the elder riders are willing to help him, Jaevid begins a dangerous adventure to save his instructor.

Everything Jaevid learned at the academy will now be put to the ultimate test.
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Sound like your kind of read? Mine too! Now please enjoy a guest post by the lovely Nicole Conway, featuring her Favorite Books with Dragons in them!

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Most of my favorite books have dragons in them! But two definitely stand out from the rest.

The first is Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher by Bruce Coville. It was my favorite book as a child, and it still holds a special place in my heart. I checked it out from the library over and over again until my mom finally bought a copy for me—which I still own! The idea of having a pet dragon to take to school mystified my nerdy little mind. I was recently able to communicate with Bruce Coville a little through Twitter, and was able to tell him how much I have enjoyed this book. I guess I get to check that off my childhood dream list too!

The second is Dragon Weather by Lawrence Watt-Evans. This is the book I always recommend to people who just haven’t found their love in a fantasy novel yet because it’s just that good. If you’ve never been a fantasy fan before, Dragon Weather will make you one. It’s so well-written and pulls you into the story right away. Everyone loves an underdog, and this book reminds me of the Count of Monte Cristo with dragons.

Unfortunately, my personal reading list has been kept short lately because of how much time I’m spending writing. I have been going back through some of my old favorite books and reading them in my spare time, though. I read Howl’s Moving Castle and The Changeling Sea once a year. Those are two of my favorite books of all time, so I never get tired of them. Next, I’ll probably start rereading Ovid’s Metamorphoses to help me find some new inspiration. The old Greek and Roman myths always get my creative juices flowing!

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Ready for your secret word for STOP 11?

Katalina Crookin was probably the only friend I had in the world. Her father was a very good blacksmith who worked with Ulric sometimes, helping him craft unique pieces that required a more skilled metalworker. They only lived about a mile away, so Katty and I had found each other inevitably. She was small and skinny, like I was, with a head full of wild gold curls. She had big dark blue eyes, and just about every inch of her face was covered in freckles. The other kids in town teased her and called her ugly. I knew it must have hurt her feelings, but she never let it show. And when the other kids would come after me, trying to cut my hair or throw rocks at me, she was always there to defend me . . . and no one could throw a rock harder or more accurately than Katty. She had blacksmith’s hands.

I shook my head at her, moving back to the window to peek outside again. The knight was getting on his horse already, dropping a purse of coins into Ulric’s hand before he rode out of sight.

“I don’t know. I don’t think he brought it,” I whispered back. Neither of us had ever seen a dragon before.


Nicole is the author of the children’s fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES, about a young boy’s journey into manhood as he trains to become a dragonrider. She has completed the first two books in the series, and is now working on the third and final book.

Originally from a small town in North Alabama, Nicole moves frequently due to her husband’s career as a pilot for the United States Air Force. She received a B.A. in English with a concentration in Classics from Auburn University, and will soon attend graduate school.

She has previously worked as a freelance and graphic artist for promotional companies, but has now embraced writing as a full-time occupation.

Nicole enjoys hiking, camping, shopping, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. She also loves watching children’s movies and collecting books. She lives at home with her husband, two cats, and dog.

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