Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway: Divided Fates (Immar & Stauros Trilogy #2) by Stephanie M. Allen

Welcome to my stop on the virtual book tour for Divided Fates by Stephanie M. Allen. This book tour was organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an excerpt from the book as well as a guest post from the author about her writing process. There's also the tour wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. Be sure to visit the other stops on the tour for more content. Enjoy!
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Title: Divided Fates
Series: Immar & Stauros Trilogy #2
Author: Stephanie M. Allen
Publication Date: April 26th 2022
Print Length: 348 pages
Genre: Fantasy
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Ten days after the battle in the north, the world of Erez has been thrown into turmoil.

Princess Isemay awakens - injured and weak - in a strange village. Branded an outcast because of her mixed heritage but forced to stay against her will, she must choose to conform to the sha’nidow way of life or face the consequences. When a mysterious stranger arrives with a heartbreaking message, Isemay’s hope abandons her to a fate far more destructive than she was prepared for.

Princess Alena finds herself the queen of the northern kingdom - powerful, adored, alone. Fighting inner demons of darkness, she travels south to visit her brother, now the king of Neilos. But fate will not allow her to find peace, and she must decide whether she will side with those she loves or the one who holds ultimate power.

Niri Flesh-cleaver, granddaughter to the elusive Choshech and heir to the nashech throne, has everything she could want - and yet her heart yearns for more. Torn between her mother’s orders and a forbidden love, she quickly realizes she cannot have both. Driven by brokenness, she will seek to destroy the one person she blames for Choshech’s demise - and find that perhaps her heart was the better guide all along.

Three women. Three separate journeys. One path to find that fate will divide even the closest of bonds.

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EXCERPT:
“Your Majesty, go!” Jeremy shouted as he shoved the king toward his stallion. “We can’t fight what we can’t see.”

Jordan murmured a prayer for Jori and Noam as he gripped Ryoma’s mane and mounted bareback. “Get to a horse!” he ordered as he slammed his heels into his stallion’s ribs. Ryoma shot forward into the night, his ears flat against his skull. Refusing to allow panic to shiver its way into his body, Jordan used his legs to guide his stallion, keeping his hand fisted in the horse’s mane. Echoing hoofbeats came from behind—as well as the flapping of several wings.

“Your Majesty, above you!”

Jordan lay forward against Ryoma’s neck as a shadow passed right where his head had been. “Who are you?” he shouted at the fleeing darkness.

A shrieking roar filled the night as another shadow blew above him.

He squeezed his heels against Ryoma, urging the poor horse to gallop even faster. They were among trees now. He could feel branches whipping him in the face as his stallion fled at a blinding pace. He couldn’t be sure, but it felt as though they were climbing.

He could no longer hear hoofbeats behind him and prayed that Jeremy hadn’t befallen the same fate as the other two men. The trees seemed to be providing some cover for he could no longer hear flapping wings close by. The night was pitch black as they barreled headlong over unfamiliar ground, driving further and further up the mountain.

A roar and a crash sounded from somewhere behind him as Jordan and Ryoma broke through the tree line. He gasped as the moonlight suddenly filled his vision. They were atop a mountain peak, streaking along an open space. He risked a glance behind to see another horse break out of the forest—a riderless horse.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Stephanie M. Allen graduated from California Baptist University in 2009 with a B.A. in English and a desire to share her imaginative stories with the world. She loves to write fantasy, particularly centered around young adults. Aside from writing, Stephanie loves to read, ride horses, and sing. She currently lives in Wyoming with her husband and two children.

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GUEST POST:
- What was your writing process like for this book?

This is the sequel to Dueling Fates, so I already had a good base for this book. I had the main characters, the world, and the basic storyline. As an author, I like to create story outlines with music. I have a Spotify playlist for every single book that I write. When I start the writing process, I will begin adding songs to that book's playlist. Those songs will change as I progress through the story, however I tend to find a theme for the book. I like to have songs that have a similar sound or are from the same soundtrack. For this particular book trilogy, the Game of Thrones soundtrack has heavily influenced my writing. Once I have a basic outline, I just begin writing. Oftentimes, I will change a character's story halfway through. This happened to both Savant and Alena for this book.

I also added a new character to this story. Niri, the nashech princess, was not supposed to be part of this story. However, as I began writing, I realized there was a huge missing component and after reading fantasy novels like Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas and Dark Fever by Karen Marie Moning, I started to realize I needed an anti-heroine in my story. Niri quickly became one of my favorite characters in this book. I loved fleshing out her story and writing a character that has to play the villain even if they don't fully believe what they are fighting for. Once her character came into the story, it felt much more complete and I was able to add onto the world that I'd already created. The nashech are a fun fantasy race that are a mixture of human and dragon, which isn't exactly a new concept, but I like the direction I took them in this story.

This book took me several months to write, much longer than I anticipated. It was quite an emotionally-draining book. It's the second in the trilogy, so there are a lot of loose ends to tie up in the third book. I liken this book to The Empire Strikes Back, one of my favorite Star Wars movie. There's a lot of bittersweetness here and it takes a very dark turn. However, my hope is that the readers will have a little hope after reading the very last chapter, which happens to be my favorite scene in the book. It was also a scene I never intended to add until I heard the song "Take It All" by Ruelle. When I heard that song, I saw the scene play out in my head and I knew I had to end the book with that. Overall, this is my favorite book I've ever written and I can't wait for everyone to read it!
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GIVEAWAY:
Stephanie M. Allen will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter. Good luck!

(All the Ups and Downs is not responsible for this giveaway, its entries, or the prize. Goddess Fish Promotions and the author assume all responsibility over this giveaway.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

88 comments:

  1. Looks like a interesting book.

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    1. Thank you! I really appreciate that.

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    2. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 8:44 AM

      Forgot to add my name on that reply LOL.

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  2. Sounds like a fantastic read with great world building!

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 8:44 AM

      Thank you so much!

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  3. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 8:46 AM

    Thank you so much to All the Ups and Downs for hosting during this book tour. I really appreciate it!! :)

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  4. Interesting cover for this fantasy read. I enjoyed reading the excerpt

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 11:20 AM

      Thank you! Yes, the artist, Suzanne, did such a wonderful job. She did the cover art for the first book as well.

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  5. this sounds like an amazing read

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 11:21 AM

      Thank you! I hope you decide to give it a chance :)

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  6. I love the cover - so very pretty.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 11:21 AM

      Thanks! Yes, Suzanne is an amazing artist!

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 11:22 AM

      Thanks! I hope you decide to give it a chance :) I'd love to hear your thoughts after you read the book.

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  8. Thank you for sharing your guest post and book details, I love the cover art and the synopsis and excerpt have intrigued me. Are there any more stories planned for the series?

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 11:43 AM

      Thank you. And yes! There will be one more book in this trilogy. I always envisioned a trilogy in my head and while I love long series, I don't like extending a story longer than it needs to be. I'm currently working on the third and final book and should finish the first draft by this August.

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  9. I enjoyed the excerpt. Thanks for the giveaway!

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 11:44 AM

      Thank you! I loved writing that particular chapter. It challenged me because it's split into two different perspectives.

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  10. I love the cover. Perfect for a fantasy

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 24, 2022 at 12:49 PM

      Thank you! Yes, Suzanna did an amazing job!

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  11. This sounds like an interesting book. I like the cover and excerpt.

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  12. This sounds like an interesting book and I also like the cover.

    abfantom at yahoo dot com

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 8:46 AM

      Thank you! I hope you decide to read it :)

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  13. Sounds like an interesting story.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 8:46 AM

      Thank you! I hope you decide to give it a shot :)

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  14. Great guest post and excerpt and Divided Fates sounds like a wonderful book to read! Thanks for sharing it with me and have a fantastic day!

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  15. I could use a fantasy read now to help me deal with stress.
    Thank you for sharing this with us.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 8:47 AM

      Awe, I hear you there! I hope you decide to give it a try so you can escape for awhile :) Thank you for your sweet comment.

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  16. My daughter would enjoy this book

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 8:48 AM

      I hope she does! :) Thank you for checking it out.

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  17. David HollingsworthMay 24, 2022 at 8:44 PM

    Happy Tuesday!

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  18. The book sounds interesting.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 8:49 AM

      Thank you for giving it some attention! I hope you decide to read it :) Thanks for stopping by.

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  19. I love the cover of your book! It looks like there will be much drama in this fantasy book. Thank you for this giveaway and Good Luck with this book and the next one in your trilogy series.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 8:49 AM

      Awe, thank you so much for the sweet comment :) It means a lot.

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  20. The excerpt is interesting. Thank you for sharing it.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 11:05 AM

      You're very welcome. Thank you for reading!

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  21. Do you have any advice for new writers?

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 11:07 AM

      Sure! The most important thing is to write what's in your heart. Don't follow trends. And don't be discouraged by people telling you "no". It took me YEARS to get "Dueling Fates" published. I even self-published my YA series because so many people told me "no". But I never quit. That's the best advice I can give. Never quit. And go to writers conferences if you can. You'll learn a lot, even if you don't get published or agented from them.

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  22. I hope you have a great day!

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 25, 2022 at 2:31 PM

      Thank you! You too :)

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  23. Divided Fates in the series Immar & Stauros Trilogy #2 by author Stephanie M. Allen sounds like a book that will captivate many readers.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

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  24. The book sounds very intriguing. Great cover!

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 26, 2022 at 8:13 AM

      Thank you! I appreciate the sweet comment.

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  25. The fantasy book "Divided Fates" looks fun to read and I think the cover is very eye catching.

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  26. David HollingsworthMay 25, 2022 at 6:53 PM

    Happy Monday!

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  27. What do you like to eat for breakfast?

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 26, 2022 at 8:15 AM

      Depends on the day LOL. I've been making it a point to eat healthier so I will usually cook eggs or toast or healthier recipes for breakfast.

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  28. How do you handle book plots?

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 26, 2022 at 8:16 AM

      I'm not entirely sure what you're asking. For my own books, I usually have a basic story in mind before I start writing a book. For other books that I'm just reading, most of the time I get angry or sad LOL. Depends on the author.

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  29. I enjoyed the synopsis and excerpt

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  30. I loved the synopsis & excerpt. I'm happy to know this is part of a trilogy so more to come,

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 26, 2022 at 10:03 AM

      Thank you! Yes, there will be one more. And all questions will be answered in that third book LOL.

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  31. sounds like a fun one

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 26, 2022 at 2:16 PM

      Thank you so much :)

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 31, 2022 at 8:50 AM

      Thank you! You too :)

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  33. My daughter would enjoy this book

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  34. David HollingsworthMay 26, 2022 at 9:17 PM

    I love the sound of this book.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 31, 2022 at 8:50 AM

      Thank you! I hope you decide to give it a chance :)

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  35. I'm going to have to read Dueling Fates first. I have my Summer reading ready

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 31, 2022 at 8:52 AM

      That's awesome! I really hope you enjoy them :)

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 31, 2022 at 8:52 AM

      Thank you :) Suzanne always does a great job.

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  37. Thank you for a chance to win!

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  38. Sounds like a great book. I like the cover.

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 31, 2022 at 8:53 AM

      Thank you! I hope you decide to give it a try :)

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  39. David HollingsworthMay 27, 2022 at 9:33 PM

    Happy Friday!

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  40. What is the first book that made you cry?

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    1. Stephanie M AllenMay 31, 2022 at 8:53 AM

      I would have to say "Where the Red Fern Grows" by Wilson Rawls. That book had me sad for hours afterward. And I didn't even start crying until that evening LOL. But it hit me deep in the feels.

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  41. Aside from this one, what giveaways have you hosted for your readers?

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