Tuesday, August 28, 2018

The Shattered Blades by Aidan Russell

The Shattered Blades
The Land of Nod: Book Three of the Judges Cycle
by Aidan Russell


GENRE: Fantasy (epic)



The rivers turn to blood and the mournful cry for judgment.

Reslo returns to his family in the forest of Miradep, but his quest is not finished, and he will not fail in his duty.

Gratas and Jerah return to the idyllic town of Dunkhau, their bodies wounded and spirits scarred by battle. But if they thought war was tiring, they must now face the unknown horrors of peace.


Excerpt Two:
The dizziness flared when the Dragon dropped Reslo into a puddle on a flat rock. He took a moment to catch his breath. He even sucked up a mouthful of the fresh rainwater from the puddle. He pushed himself to his feet, drew Moreathar, and faced the Dragon.

“Why did you take me away? How could you flee? I almost had Mdychi.”

Qa’sin spun to face Reslo. For a moment, the storm subsided as his great bulk and wings tossed aside the wind and rain. Eyes that glowed like dew-covered moss stared down on the Elf. The firelight within the Dragon grew brighter through his scars.

“Your father tried to fight me the first time we met. I see you’ve inherited his temper. Perhaps his stupidity as well.”

Reslo knew the Dragon was correct. It would be stupid to try to fight the titanic beast. Moreathar was a mighty sword, and Reslo a great warrior, but neither possessed the strength to defeat Miradep’s Dragon. Besides, they had no feud with him. If anything, Reslo owed the Dragon a debt of honor, as his children would after him.

“Why did we flee?” Reslo lowered his blade.

“Because you would have been killed,” Qa’sin said, “and I need you to help rid me of that scourge.”

“What scourge?” Reslo slammed Moreathar home in its scabbard.

“That… That Dragon, no… not a Dragon. That abomination…” Qa’sin sputtered and his serpentine tongue slithered as he stumbled through his words. “Among what remains of our people, it is called the Pythoness. The Witch Dragon is what it calls itself. We must kill it and end its desecration of this forest at last. It eludes me, hides from me. That is why I need you, warden, tracker, hunter.”


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Aidan Russell is a Marine Corps veteran living in Las Vegas. He spent his youth following the adventures of wizards and space demons and decided one day to write his own tales. His short fiction is available in the Never Fear and Uncharted Worlds anthologies. When not writing, he enjoys skiing and heavy metal.

Interview with Aidan Russell:
1. What is your favorite part of this book and why?

My favorite part of this book is actually all the parts in between all the fights and battles. The first two books of the series are non-stop fantasy action. In The Shattered Blades, we find our warriors without a war and a princess who wishes she could do more to defend her kingdom. Rather than questing around the land, the knights spend most of the story trying to stay busy within a small town back in their homeland. It allowed me to explore the characters outside the environment they had become comfortable with: the battlefield.

If I had to choose one favorite scene, however, I would have to break with what I said above and go with the final battle scene. While I did a pretty substantial outline for this book, the final fight scene took shape on its own. Not only did the characters take charge of their own actions, but I also got to do some world building and explore the history of Nod quite a bit. Also, there’s an angel and a dragon fighting in space…

2. If you could spend time with a character from your book whom would it be? And what would you do during that day?

If I had to spend the day with one person, it would probably be Princess Heiradra. She knows all the best places to get good beer and never has a dull night out.

3. If you could have been the author of any book ever written, which book would you choose?

I would probably choose The Stormlight Archive series by Brandon Sanderson. It is epic fantasy at an epic scale. It deviates from some of his other works in that the main focus is on the events and characters and doesn’t seem to be so dependent on the magic system so far. There’s still an expansive world and the magic still has a structured feel to it, so I’m looking forward to seeing where things go. It’s also great to see him break some of the “rules” and just write the story he wanted, which he can do. Because he’s Brandon Sanderson.

4. Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination?

Most of the characters are from my imagination, but a few key players started off as the characters of friends in a high school role-playing game. I took their races, classes, and a few quirks and then morphed them and made them something entirely new. I gave them backstories suitable to the Land of Nod and would cause for some great adventuring.

5. What made you want to become a writer?

In elementary school, we were given the assignment of writing some short stories. Mine was apparently as much of a masterpiece as a second grader could make, because mine was chosen to be given a cardboard cover with a binding made of colored duct tape. From then, I had always been thinking up stories and adventuring in the woods behind my house. When I discovered tabletop gaming, such and Warhammer and Dungeons and Dragons, things really took off. I finished reading Lord of the Rings and decided to draw my own fantasy map. From there, a story took shape and The Judges Cycle began!



Aidan Russell will be awarding a Kindle Paperwhite (INTERNATIONAL) to a randomly drawn
winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:

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  1. I love the answer to whom you would spend time with. What a great response. I look forward to reading this book. Audrey Stewart /

    1. Thank you! I hope you enjoy. If you go to Smashwords, iBooks, B&N, or anywhere that isn't Amazon (unless their price matching finally decides to catch up), you can pick up the first book, "Road of the Lost," for free. I have to warn you though, Heiradra's shenanigans don't kick in until the second book.

  2. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your blog!

  3. I love the blurb. Sounds like a great book