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The Anna Blanc Mysteries Book 2 Audiobook Blog Tour

Audiobook Series Tour: The Anna Blanc Mysteries by Jennifer Kincheloe

Author: Jennifer Kincheloe

Narrator: Moira Quirk

Length: 10 hours 52 minutes

Series: Anna Blanc Mysteries, Book 2

Released: Dec. 6, 2017

Publisher: Jennifer Kincheloe

Genre: Historical Fiction Mystery

Los Angeles, 1908. In Chinatown, the most dangerous beat in Los Angeles, police matron Anna Blanc and her former sweetheart, Detective Joe Singer, discover the body of a white missionary woman, stuffed in a trunk in the apartment of her Chinese lover. Her lover has fled. If news gets out that a white woman was murdered in Chinatown, there will be a violent backlash against the Chinese. Joe and Anna plan to solve the crime quietly and keep the death a secret. So does good-looking Mr. Jones, a prominent Chinese leader who has mixed feelings about helping the LAPD and about Anna. Meanwhile, the Hop Sing tong has kidnapped two slave girls from the Bing Kong tong, fuelling existing tensions. They are poised on the verge of a bloody tong war that would put all Chinatown residents in danger. Joe orders Anna out of Chinatown to keep her safe, but to atone for her own family’s sins, Anna must stay to solve the crime before news of the murder is leaked and Chinatown explodes.
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Jennifer has been a block layer, a nurse’s aid, a fragrance model, and on the research faculty at UCLA, where she spent 11 years conducting studies to inform health policy. A native of Southern California, she now lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and two teenagers. She’s currently writing book three in the Anna Blanc Mystery series. Book two, THE WOMAN IN THE CAMPHOR TRUNK, is coming out in Fall of 2017 from Seventh Street Books.
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Narrator Bio Moira grew up in teeny-tiny Rutland, England’s smallest county, which is fitting as she never managed to make it past five feet herself. Moira’s work spans the pantheon of the voiceover world: plays for BBC radio, plays for NPR, video games, commercials, television promos, podcasts, cartoons, movies and award winning audiobooks. She’s won Multiple Audie Awards, Earphone Awards, as well as Audible’s prestigious Book-of-the-Year Award. She has lately set foot in front of the camera again, appearing in “Pretty: the Series” and the Emmy-winning “Dirty Work.”
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    I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Jennifer Kincheloe. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.
Q&A with Narrator Moira Quirk
  • How did you wind up narrating audiobooks? Was it always your goal or was it something you stumbled into by chance?
    • A director I work with on plays for BBC radio introduced me to a producer who was looking for a young, female British narrator, so it was serendipity meets preparedness really.
  • A lot of narrators seem to have a background in theatre. Is that something you think is essential to a successful narration career?
    • I don’t think there are any real rules in performance. Just be good, or be compelling, preferably both. Obviously, you get better by doing, so be it theatre or improv or stand-up or reading out loud every day, just keep doing that.
  • What type of training have you undergone?
    • My degree is in English and Drama, so kind of the perfect degree for an audiobook narrator. I also attended Central School of Speech and Drama, and then went on to perform in theatre, improv, and stand up. I hosted for Nickeleodeon in my twenties and then went into animation and videogames and the voice-over world. Then I found my way in to plays for BBC Radio and LA Theatreworks… and then audiobooks.
  • How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for narrating?
    • I’m fortunate in that I have quite a varied voice-over career: cartoons, videogames, radio plays, film and TV, in addition to audiobooks. Also, and I don’t quite know how, but I have managed to always go to a studio with at least an engineer with me to record books. The digital age is great and everything, but it means that so much is done remotely, or in home studios. It can feel a little isolated this brave new world. Yes, I know everyone says, “You can go to work in your pajamas!” I just don’t know if I rate pajamas that highly.
  • What are your favorite and least favorite parts of narrating an audiobook?
    • It is the absolute worst when you are sick and coughing or blowing your nose at the end of every paragraph. It is the best when you are flying through the pages because you really get the author’s rhythm and syntax and characters.
  • What would you say are your strongest narration abilities?
    • I love characters! And I really love characters with accents! Accents have always been my bread and butter.
  • How did you decide how each character should sound in this title?
    • The simple part is just going off the author’s description. Then I decide, based on the author’s style if I’ll give a “full character” or an idea of the character- am I creating a play where I play all of the characters, or am I a narrator giving an idea of the cast? Then you get into logistics. If you have a group of characters of a similar age and demographic how do you differentiate them? What is sustainable? What is distinct? What is truthful? And how might the character’s sound change depending on their arc? This is all part of my decision making. Also, as a female, I have to decide how to approach the male voices. For me, I generally try to initially establish the ‘maleness’ but really emphasize their character, so that as I continue I can focus on making them interesting and truthful with an idea of maleness and avoid that full basso profundo which always reminds me of that scene in The Life of Brian: “Are there any women here?!”
  • What types of things are harmful to your voice?
    • Screaming. Yelling. Using unusual placements of the voice. Talking out loud for unnaturally long amounts of time… Wait? What?
  • Has anyone ever recognized you from your voice?
    • Yup
  • How does audiobook narration differ from other types of voiceover work you’ve done?
    • a) It’s way longer
    • b) It’s way, way longer
  • What’s next for you?
    • I have a couple of YA titles coming up. I am hoping I have a Jane Austen set in the very near future because I do love lit-er-a-ture. Very Good, Jeeves should be airing soon for BBC radio where I play Stiffy Byng. I adore Wodehouse.
Giveaway
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My Review: https://willowwritesandreads.com/2020/02/14/the-woman-in-the-camphor-trunk-by-jennifer-kincheloe-book-review/

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Something Wicked This Way Comes Audiobook Blog Tour

Audiobook Blog Tour: Something Wicked This Way Comes by William Todd

Author: William Todd

Narrator: Ben Werling

Length: 5 hours 35 muntes

Publisher: William Todd

Released: Nov. 14, 2018

Genre: Horror

August 1888. Jericho Mannion is the captain of an old, cash-strapped steamer named the Orion. He’s been steadily losing money to his competitors, the railways. When he finds out from his first mate, Tal MacTavish, that the next passage across Lake Erie has only a few passengers, his hopes sink of ever getting out of debt. But Providence has smiled upon him. Though the passenger list is small, they have almost a full cargo hold, thanks to William Ross and the university he works for. Ross is the team leader of a university archeology dig tasked with retrieving the debris from a meteorite crash in western Ohio. He is quite anxious to get his find back to the university for study and is willing to pay Jericho double the fare for his team and cargo for a straight shot across Lake Erie from Toledo, Ohio to Buffalo, NY. Jericho becomes suspicious when Ross refuses to divulge the contents of his cargo and the haste in which he wants to cross. Desperately needing money, Jericho reluctantly agrees when Ross finally offers him triple the fare; he will take him and his cargo on the nonstop 14-hour trek across the lake. But what few people on the ship know is what was initially thought to be a meteorite crash turned out to be an alien craft. The crates in the cargo area hold the remains of the ship. And what no one knows, not even the university team, is that something in those crates is still alive. Now, in a growing storm, alone in the middle of the lake, people are turning up dead. Who will survive the crossing when something wicked this way comes?
I have been writing online since the early 2000’s, primarily writing horror stories in the style of Poe and Lovecraft. I was the 2nd most popular author on the website storiesbyemail.com for two years before moving on. I had my first book, a Victorian era horror compilation called Bumps in the Night, published by Mystic Moon Press just a week before they closed their website and never saw my hard work pay off. Afterwards I took publishing into my own hands, became an Indie author and haven’t looked back. My first self-published book was Dead of Night, another compilation of Victorian horror stories, published September 2016 by Createspace and on Kindle by KDP. After its publication I left my comfort zone for mystery and wrote a short story about Sherlock Holmes in the Conan Doyle style. I loved it so much I then did a longer story A Reflection of Evil, both published in 2017 through Createspace and KDP. I have just release Beyond the Gossamer Veil, another compilation of both Victorian and modern supernatural/horror stories and am in the beginning stages of my third Sherlock Holmes installment.
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Narrator Bio Ben is an award winning actor and voice over professional, who has performed all across the United States. From Shakespeare to Neil Simon, he has displayed a versatility and diversity in the characters and dialects he has portrayed. Ben received the Joseph Jefferson Award for Leading Actor as abusive talk show host Barry Champlain in Eric Bogosian’s TALK RADIO, and was nominated for Best Supporting Actor as Prosecutor Villeforte in Alexander Dumas’ THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO, also in Chicago. He has worked with an extensive list of theaters in Chicago over the last three decades: Steppenwolf, Bailiwick, Famous Door, Next, A Red Orchid, Raven Theater, First Folio, Writer’s Theater, Buffalo Theater Ensemble, as well as Utah Shakespeare Festival, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Indiana Repertory, Madison Repertory, and Allenberry Playhouse in Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania. He is an Ensemble member of Shattered Globe Theater in Chicago. For almost a decade he was the voice of the Adler Planetarium, hosting live shows and pointing out the stars, planets and constellations on the big dome. Ben has an eponymous weekly vlog on YouTube, that he films, produces, edits and narrates. He lives in Chicago with his wife Amy, two dogs and three cats.   I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by William Todd. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.
Q&A with Author William Todd
  • Tell us about the process of turning your book into an audiobook.
    • I never used to even think about how a book would sound as an audiobook…until I finally had one done. Now, I do. The story is most important, whether read or heard. I a bad story is a bad story. But I am more cognizant now when I write with how a phrase might sound read aloud. I think my audiobooks now are much easier on the ear then my first ones because of that. And my narrator, Ben Werling, I’ve used on every story. He’s great and has a wide vocal range. He makes turning a book into audio so much easier on me. I think we’re a good team. I basically give him my manuscript with some simple directions as to accents, maybe weird words that might pop up, since I write typically late Victorian era material, and he does the rest. He does a chapter at a time and sends them to me to okay. We rarely have to redo anything. I am truly lucky because the process, at least for me, is very simple with Ben at the helm.
  • Was a possible audiobook recording something you were conscious of while writing?
    • Because audiobooks are so prevalent and getting more and more popular by the day, I think you have to be conscious of it becoming an audiobook while writing, especially if you plan on using that format. And I think an author is selling himself short if he doesn’t at least consider putting his creations on audiobook. It is another channel to garner readers and followers…and revenue.
  • How did you select your narrator?
    • I put up three pages of my book for narrators to “audition”. I listen to each audition and pick the best one. But because Ben and I have such a good working relationship, ultimately, he gets my jobs. It is not only because he is such a good narrator. I write Sherlock Holmes and gothic horror. At least for the Holmes stories, I prefer having the same Holmes and Watson in each of my stories. Ben has been hands down the best Holmes and Watson I have found so why would I switch? I don’t think my readers would like that, and I know they would hear the difference.
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • I am. Until I land on the best-sellers list or get a movie deal, I have a job to pay bills and raise my family. I drive 45 minutes one way. Sometimes, that hour and a half is the only time I have to myself, and the perfect way to spend that time is listening to audiobooks. There are just times in this hustle and bustle life where cracking open a paperback is not possible. But your ears are always available to listen.
  • Is there a particular part of this story that you feel is more resonating in the audiobook performance than in the book format?
    • I might have to say all of it, but there’s a reason. Well, okay I’ll narrow it down to the final scenes of the book during a storm. But the reason I say all of it is because Ben employs subtle sound effects in the background much like the old radio stories. There is one part of the story where there is a storm, and the thunder and lightning in the background of the narrations lends itself perfectly to the feel of the scene.
  • How did you celebrate after finishing this novel?
    • I usually don’t. I breathe a sigh of relief, take a few days off to unwind, then jump right back in. I usually have several ideas floating around in my head or jotted down on paper. I’ll pick one, let it percolate then start the process all over again. Being an indie author and all that entails, you rarely have down time. I’m a bit OCD. Just like Monk on the TV show who has to touch things as he walks by them, my fingers have to constantly be tapping on a keyboard. I’ll celebrate when I’m dead.
  • What gets you out of a writing slump? What about a reading slump?
    • For both it is the same–just do it. It is very easy for life to get in the way of writing. And it’s also very easy to fall out of the habit of writing. Mowing, cleaning, doing things with family, work, prepare for holidays, just plain being lazy (guilty as charged), etc. You have to make the time. This just happened to me where I wrote nothing for over two weeks, and I have deadline to have a Holmes story written by the end of the year for a publication next year. I had been under the weather and busy with life on top of that. There were times where I could have written but didn’t. The good habit of writing almost daily had been broken. But for me, all it took was forcing myself to sit at the lap top and writing a few sentences. Those few sentences ended at ten pages. Same with reading. Even if you have to force yourself, do it. If you love to read and love to write, just the mere act will set you right again. At least it does for me.
  • Have any of your characters ever appeared in your dreams?
    • That is where I usually get impetus for my stories, so yeah. Many characters I’ve come up with have appeared in my dreams. The trick is finding the story in which they will appear, especially when I might be working on more than one story at a time.
  • Do you have any tips for authors going through the process of turning their books into audiobooks?
    • Be picky in who you choose. The narrator is 50 percent of the audiobook, the other 50 percent being the story itself. I have heard many good stories butchered by bad narration.
  • What’s next for you?
    • I am finishing up a compilation of Sherlock Holmes stories that should be out sometime in the first half of 2020.
Dream Cast
Author William Todd’s Picks For Something Wicked This Way Comes
  • Jericho Mannion – Ryan Gosling
  • Tal MacTavish – Sam Heughan
  • Claire Mannion – Jayd Johnson
  • Charlotte Gordon – Emma Stone
  • Charlotte’s son Benny – Gavin Warren
  • Billy – Noah Jupe
  • William Ross – Gary Oldman
Giveaway
Win $20 PayPal Cash
Something Wicked This Way Comes Giveaway: $20 PayPal Cash https://widget.gleamjs.io/e.js Feb. 9th: Dab of Darkness Book Reviews The Book Junkie Reads . . . A Wonderful World of Words Feb. 10th: Audiobook News Blog Locks, Hooks and Books Books, Tea, Healthy Me Feb. 11th: Bookmark and Fork Eileen Troemel I’m Shelfish Feb. 12th: Jazzy Book Reviews Super Booked! Krit’s Book Reviews Feb. 13th: eBook Addicts Willow Writes and Reads T’s Stuff Feb. 14th: The Clipped Nightingale 4 the Love of Audiobooks Texan Girl Reviews Feb. 15th: Nesie’s Place 2 Girls & A Book

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Jane Austen's Dragons Book 2: Longbourn Audiobook Blog Tour

Audiobook Series Tour: Jane Austen’s Dragons by Maria Grace

Author: Maria Grace

Narrator: Benjamin Fife

Length: 9 hours 38 minutes

Series: Jane Austen’s Dragons, Book 2

Publisher: Maria Grace

Released: Dec. 4, 2019

Genre: Epic Fantasy

Darcy thought his problems were over when Pemberley hatched and successfully imprinted on humans. But baby dragons prove far more difficult than any dragon lore prepared him for. Only Elizabeth Bennet’s notes offer him any help. When his imperious Aunt Catherine takes matters into her own hands, things take a turn for the worse and Pemberley’s life hangs in the balance. He desperately needs more of Elizabeth’s help, but she ignores all of his requests. Elizabeth, though, has problems of her own. After the Bennet family dragon sent Pemberley away, life at Longbourn was supposed to return to normal and Elizabeth get on with the all-important business of marrying the heir to her father’s estate. Except that he is the last man in the world whom she could ever be prevailed on to marry – a bumbling, addle-pated dragon-hater who demands she gives up the dragons she lives for. Can she, with the help of her dragon friends, find her way back to Pemberley before they both suffer their fate from the Dragon Entail? Jane Austen meets Anne McCaffrey’s Dragon Riders of Pern. A must-listen for Pern fans.
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Five time BRAG Medallion Honoree and #1 best selling Historical Fantasy author, Maria Grace has her PhD in Educational Psychology and is a 16-year veteran of the university classroom where she taught courses in human growth and development, learning, test development and counseling. None of which have anything to do with her undergraduate studies in economics/sociology/managerial studies/behavior sciences. She pretends to be a mild-mannered writer/cat-lady, but most of her vacations require helmets and waivers or historical costumes, usually not at the same time. She writes gaslamp fantasy, historical romance and non-fiction to help justify her research addiction.
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Narrator Bio
Benjamin Fife has always had a passion for learning. With a mind that remembers all sorts of numbers and useless trivia, he regularly wins local radio shows and enjoys confusing people with sci-fi quotes. Fife grew up in Southeast Idaho. He attended college at Idaho State University, where he met his future wife in their music theory class. They have been married nearly 20 years and now have six children and a whole menagerie of animals. When their oldest daughter was three or four years old they started reading aloud from novels every night at bedtime, and have continued the tradition ever since. The family loves exploring various worlds and topics through Fife’s wonderful reading skills, which get better every year. They all have his Christmas Carol voices memorized (and the older kids are known to quote along with portions), since he has read it to them every December. Benjamin enjoys all kinds of sci-fi and fantasy – both books and shows, is an extreme eclectic music lover, and prefers his chocolate to be of the 90% cocoa variety. Above all, he loves to be with his family. He loves recording audio books, and is delighted to tell people, “I’ve finally found what I want to be when I grow up!”
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  I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Benjamin Fife. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.
Q&A with Narrator Benjamin Fife
  • When did you know you wanted to be an audiobook narrator?
    • Going way back to 8th grade (‘92?) – in my speech class we were required to do a read aloud from a book for the class. I chose the novelization of The Empire Strikes back & did the iconic scene where Darth Vader reveals (SPOILER ALERT) he is Luke’s father. I did it complete with a jar for the Vader echo. Still love that scene. Fast forward a few years & when I met my wife, we started reading aloud to each other. I started thinking about doing it then (early 2000’s), but life was busy happening. We had our first kid in 2003 & from about the time she was 5 or 6 years old, we’ve taken turns picking what we wanted to read as a family every night. We’ve read silly, serious, Fiction, non fiction. I found it somewhat maddening when I read Jane Eyre to the kids – The oldest couldn’t have been more than 11 or 12 – and the two oldest girls were able to guess the plot points before they happened. Right down to (Spoiler alert) “I Bet his wife will jump off the Roof.” Though we do sometimes take turns, I’ve probably read 4/5ths of the books at least. I didn’t really know how to get into doing audiobook narration, but I knew it was something I wanted to do.
  • How did you wind up narrating audiobooks? Was it always your goal or was it something you stumbled into by chance?
    • Almost exactly 2 years ago, I got home from work one day & my wife said, “Hey, you should check out this ACX thing.” That night I set up my account. The next day I attended an uncle’s funeral. When one of my cousin’s I hadn’t seen for probably a decade asked me what I’ve been doing, after the normal update of job, kids etc, on a whim I said “And I narrate Audiobooks.” My first official audition was for one of his books (Prior to the conversation, I didn’t know he was an author). For the record – My audition was abysmal & he thankfully went with a different narrator – however, next month I’m recording Walls of Glass for him (J.W. Elliot) My audition for that one he said was head and shoulders above anything else he got.
  • Did you find it difficult to “break into” audiobook narration? What skill/tool helped you the most when getting started?
    • Short answer – No, not really. I would say the best tool & skill that has helped me to move forward continually & exponentially, is passion though. I LOVE narrating. I LOVE storytelling & bringing books to life. My wife told me I should put on here years & years of practice as well.
    • A lot of narrators seem to have a background in theatre. Is that something you think is essential to a successful narration career?*
    • I took Drama for 3 years in High School & I’ve always had a dramatic flare. I’ve never been cast for more than a bit part though, but it’s also not something I’ve ever tried to actively pursue. The acting ability of a narrator is essential however, and now that I am narrating, I’m using a lot of the skills I developed in Kay Jenkins’ Drama class more than 20 years ago. I’ve also always enjoyed improv games that I initially learned in that class. There are 2 main schools of thought I’ve found in audiobook narration – That of the “Strait read” or that of the “Characterized Read.” I’ve listened to both & by far I prefer the latter, but my imagination can fill in the blanks on a strait read as well.
  • What type of training have you undergone?
    • Aside from my 3 years in drama studying dialects & the 12 guideposts, I sang in choirs in college at Idaho State University & University of Idaho – both under some brilliant conductors – Scott Anderson (ISU), Rager Moore (U of I), and Dan Buckvich (U of I). Scott & Rager’s rehearsals were more of a group vocal lesson. Dan’s was in a VERY large jazz choir & he was amazing at getting hundreds of people to enunciate incredibly clearly. Years later, my wife & I ran a music store and I had a number of private lessons with Paul Harms, who had been principle tenor of the LA opera theatre for many years. Paul was a very nuts & bolts vocal instructor.
  • How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for narrating?
    • I haven’t gotten incredibly burned out on anything yet. Sometimes I get a little bored in the editing process. If I do find myself getting burned out on something, I’ll take a break from it. I also find a good way to keep my skills up & enthusiasm up is to keep auditioning for new titles. The downside of that (sort of) is that if I get selected for all of them, I’ll be booked for a decade or so. But I also don’t audition for something unless it interests me at least a little.
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • ABSOLUTELY! When my wife & I were in college, we delivered newspapers ridiculously early & would frequently check out books on tape from the library. I’ve gone up & down with listening, much more UP of late. My day job is a 40 minute commute, so it’s perfect for listening. When I can the dayjob, I’m going to be healthier though, because I still want my listening time so I’ll be walking for that time each day instead. I’ve listened primarily to classics on Librivox up until recently (in the last 2 years I’ve listened to or read the complete works of Charles Dickens). I now am trying to listen to an audiobook a week from a newer narrator/author. I try to review everything I read & listen to, so I listen to at least some of it at 1x speed. If it’s non-fiction, I’ll pump the speed up to about 1.9 & if it’s fiction I listen at about 1.3.
  • What are your favorite and least favorite parts of narrating an audiobook?
    • I hate waiting. (Inigo, Princess Bride). Waiting to find out if I get picked for the book, waiting for my schedule to free up so I can get to the one I REALLY want to narrate, waiting for the author to get me back any changes, waiting for ACX to approve it & make it live, waiting to see if anybody likes it.
    • I pretty well love everything else though. But I’m not incredibly fond of when an author is Uber picky in the editing process. I did one (no disclosure here as to what it was/ who wrote it, etc) that if I read “Said [character]” instead of “[Character] said,” they wanted me to fix it. In that book the author gave me basically one correction a minute, some of which were due to their writing errors. Not gonna lie, I got burned out on that title. That being said, I think my accuracy has improved from the experience.
  • What would you say are your strongest narration abilities?
    • I’m a really good storyteller. I love doing it & creating characters with the author. One thing I like to do with authors is kind of assemble who they would cast as such and such a character. With this series, we just kind of went with the BBC production cast & created the dragons as unique characters – Though come book 3 – Thalia is kind of channeling James T Kirk a little. One of my favorite minor characters I ever voiced in a book was Rabbi Wheaton in Father of the Bride of Frankenstein. He was Ben Stein as a Rabbi. Feel free to check it out.
  • What’s next for you?
    • Preserve, Protect & Defend – by Cameron Taylor
    • Their Greatest Game – Chronicles of Theren book II by C.D. Tavenor
    • Gather the Children (Book II from Earthbound) by Mari Collier
    • Walls of Glass by J.W. Elliot – This is by my cousin & is a great book designed to tear down barriers.
    • A Proper introduction to Dragons (Jane Austen’s Dragons prequel)
    • The Fringe Candidate by Bradford Swift
    • Those are the ones I’m currently under contract for at least. I’m definitely looking forward to Maria Graces dragon treatment of Persuasion that will be coming out this spring we hope. I might push a project or two down the line to squeeze it in when she’s ready. There’s a lot more in the pipeline beyond that too. Currently in talks with one author about doing a 12 book series he wrote 30 years ago.
    • And the other thing that is on the “what’s next for you” horizon. Quitting the Dayjob. That’s been my goal from 2 years ago & in the last year, I’ve waffled a bit about how soon, but I’m on the sooner rather than later side of things & I’m blessed with a partner who is incredibly supportive of me in this. A little over a year ago, I was feeling a little down because I hadn’t landed anything new recently & I got my royalty check from one month for like $5. I asked her if she was really ok with my still going with it. She told me she’s never seen me happier, so even if I never make anything with it, I’d better stick with it. She’s awesome.
  • Bonus question: Any funny anecdotes from inside the recording studio?
    • Speaking of Ms. Awesome… In the middle of narrating Longbourn – as Lizzie is fleeing Hertfordshire – I was rather into the narration at about 9:30 pm. My studio is a converted prebuilt shed outside our home (If anyone can guess why I call it Rex Iter studio, let me know & I’ll send you a free code to ALL of my books that I still have codes for). It has one little window right off of where I stand to record. So, emotionally fraught chapter, dark & quiet outside. My studio is not quite soundproof, so I’ll hear the occasional thing happening outside. I heard a couple of little bumps or something. So my subconcious brain is going, “If it affects the audio, I can do a retake, but I’m doing really well with this part and will just push on through.” Then I hear the bump-tapping again & look up. Ms. Awesome with Gowron Eyes watching me in the window. Normally, I scream like a girl when startled. What got recorded is a cry of utter terror, followed by her coming in & laughter. Enjoy. This just sums up our relationship. https://soundcloud.com/user-29643215/lonbourn-blooper-reel
Top 10 List
Narrator Benjamin Fife’s ‘Top 10 Reasons for Voicing Jane Austen’s Dragons’
  1. I love being able to do British accents.
  2. I love Jane Austen
  3. I love Classics
  4. I love Dragons
  5. I love stories that mash 2 things together that wouldn’t normally be found alongside each other.
  6. I frequently will use “head Canon” to explain in my brain how many things that are traditionally thought of as fiction, could in fact be fact. Stargate. Star Trek. Wizarding World. The Free Kingdoms. Dragons. The Force. All True. Pemberly is still alive & runs the Westminster Dog show with the Darcy’s Descendants.
  7. Maria Grace’s Writing is Superb.
  8. I blame Sherilynn. She introduced me to Jane Austen.
  9. Timothy Zahn hasn’t called me yet to record his books.
  10. Being able to voice Dragons is positively delightful. How can anyone resist?
Giveaway
Prize: Custom Statue of the Dragon ‘Pemberly’
Jane Austen’s Dragons Giveaway: Custom Statue of the Dragon ‘Pemberly’ https://widget.gleamjs.io/e.js
View the full 21-day schedule here!

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My Review: https://willowwritesandreads.com/2020/02/10/longbourn-dragon-entail-by-maria-grace-book-review/

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Posted in Promotional Blogs

Jane Austen's Dragons Blog Tour (Book 1)

Audiobook Series Tour: Jane Austen’s Dragons by Maria Grace

Author: Maria Grace

Narrator: Benjamin Fife

Length: 8 hours 11 minutes

Series: Jane Austen’s Dragons, Book 1

Publisher: Maria Grace

Released: July 2, 2019

Genre: Epic Fantasy

England is overrun by dragons of all shapes and sizes. Most people are blissfully unaware of them and the Pendragon Treaty that keeps the peace between human and dragon kind. Only those born with preternatural hearing, like Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet are able to hear and converse with dragonkind. When the first firedrake egg laid in a century is stolen from Pemberley, the fragile dragon peace teeters on collapse. Darcy has no choice but to chase down the thief, a journey that leads him to quaint market town of Meryton and fellow Dragon Keeper, Elizabeth Bennet. Elizabeth shares a unique bond with dragons, stronger than anything Darcy has ever experienced. More than that, her vast experience and knowledge of dragon lore may be the key to uncovering the lost egg. But Elizabeth can’t stand Darcy’s arrogance and doesn’t trust him to care properly for a precious baby firedrake. After all, he already lost the egg once. What’s to prevent it from happening again? Can he win her trust and recover the stolen egg before it hatches and sends England spiraling back into the Dark Ages of Dragon War? Jane Austen meets Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern. A must-listen for Pern fans.
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Five time BRAG Medallion Honoree and #1 best selling Historical Fantasy author, Maria Grace has her PhD in Educational Psychology and is a 16-year veteran of the university classroom where she taught courses in human growth and development, learning, test development and counseling. None of which have anything to do with her undergraduate studies in economics/sociology/managerial studies/behavior sciences. She pretends to be a mild-mannered writer/cat-lady, but most of her vacations require helmets and waivers or historical costumes, usually not at the same time. She writes gaslamp fantasy, historical romance and non-fiction to help justify her research addiction.
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Narrator Bio
Benjamin Fife has always had a passion for learning. With a mind that remembers all sorts of numbers and useless trivia, he regularly wins local radio shows and enjoys confusing people with sci-fi quotes. Fife grew up in Southeast Idaho. He attended college at Idaho State University, where he met his future wife in their music theory class. They have been married nearly 20 years and now have six children and a whole menagerie of animals. When their oldest daughter was three or four years old they started reading aloud from novels every night at bedtime, and have continued the tradition ever since. The family loves exploring various worlds and topics through Fife’s wonderful reading skills, which get better every year. They all have his Christmas Carol voices memorized (and the older kids are known to quote along with portions), since he has read it to them every December. Benjamin enjoys all kinds of sci-fi and fantasy – both books and shows, is an extreme eclectic music lover, and prefers his chocolate to be of the 90% cocoa variety. Above all, he loves to be with his family. He loves recording audio books, and is delighted to tell people, “I’ve finally found what I want to be when I grow up!”
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  I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Benjamin Fife. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.
Q&A with Author Maria Grace
  • Do you believe certain types of writing translate better into audiobook format?
    • I’ve had narrators doing both non-fiction and fiction books for me and it has all worked. I believe that if it reads well—it’s engaging and interesting and hard to put down—then it will also listen well. But narrating excellent audiobooks is a really skill than not every narrator has.
  • Was a possible audiobook recording something you were conscious of while writing?
    • I thought a little about the possibility of doing audiobooks with the dragon series, but I was honestly so caught up in the complexities of creating the world that I didn’t really process he whole audiobook potential until much later.
  • Were there any real life inspirations behind your writing?
    • Definitely, though I will absolutely not be naming any names! I will say this difficult people are far more likely to wind their way into my stories than easy-going, delightful ones. Large, old, dragons to be rather cranky. Apparently I know a lot of real life dragons if you now what I mean. LOL
  • What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as “cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”?
    • Being a research nerd and a college prof for 16 years, I’d point to the research that says audiobooks tap the same parts of the brain as reading does. That’s pretty good evidence to suggest that there’s no cheating involved in audiobooks!
  • How did you celebrate after finishing this novel?
    • By starting the next one. This particular story required a three book arc to tie up all the plot points (though each book had a definite plot of its own). So I was itching to start the next one once I’d launched the first.
  • In your opinion, what are the pros and cons of writing a stand-alone novel vs. writing a series?
    • Hands down, I prefer to write series. I love the opportunity to hang out with the characters over a long period of time and really get to know them. Series offer the chance to create far deeper and more complex worlds and stories and I just love that.
  • What’s next for you?
    • Another book in the series! Seriously, I’m half way through the fifth book right now and hoping to have it done in March! If you’d like to keep up with news about it you can find me on RandomBitsofFascination.com.
Top 10 List
Narrator Benjamin Fife’s ‘Top 10 Reason to be A Narrator’
  1. Sometimes I get information before the general public
  2. I become intimately familiar with each book I narrate, going through it no less than 3 times total in a relatively short period of time.
  3. Ego. I love hearing that people love my work. The Positive reviews have far outstripped the negative & I’m able to learn from the negative, improve & run with it.
  4. Last year I read probably twice as much as any other single year of my life because I was narrating all the time. I get paid to read books! How cool is that?
  5. Catharsis. Not with every book, but many of the books I’ve performed have had some pretty emotional chapters that in performing them, I feel amazing after having done so. Kind of something I’ve discovered as I’ve gone that’s an extra bonus.
  6. I only have to do what I want. If a project doesn’t appeal to me in some way, I don’t audition for it.
  7. Happier than I’ve ever been.
  8. Flexible work schedule.
  9. I get to be in on the creative process with some truly brilliant people.
  10. Vicarious Adventures. I’ve yet to be outside of North America. Like book lovers since the world began, I experience so much through the worlds created from the minds of those truly brilliant people I’m able to work with.
Giveaway
Prize: Custom Statue of the Dragon ‘Pemberly’
Jane Austen’s Dragons Giveaway: Custom Statue of the Dragon ‘Pemberly’ https://widget.gleamjs.io/e.js
View the full 21-day schedule here!

Plugging you into the audio community since 2016.

Sign up as a tour host here.

Review: https://willowwritesandreads.com/2020/01/25/pemberly-mr-darcys-dragon-by-maria-grace-book-review/

Thank you for reading!

Maximize your reading options with Kindle Unlimited. Maximize your reading time with Audible Membership.

If you’d like to contribute to my page, please send it to my Paypal. Any amount is very appreciated. Thank you! And thank you for reading my blogs. I’m honored to have you as a reader!