Hello everyone! Today I am a stop on the blog tour for the book Absolution 🙂 I am happy to say that I will actually have TWO stops on this tour… Today, I will be doing a review, and an author interview, and MY GIVEAWAY!! There’s actually several giveaways, so that’s why I’ve said it this way. As always, if you click the tour banner, it will take you to the tour site, so you can see all of tour hosts and stops. There so many good things about this book. It’s a little hard to say so much with just a few sentences for you to get all the things about this book. Here’s the goodreads synopsis:
In 1947, a gangster murders private investigator Raymond Adams. In 2011, he’s brought back to life for 24 hours to solve the supernatural murder of a Hollywood Adult film star.
When the son of a Pit Lord is murdered in Hollywood, the celestial beings in charge of the Four Realms ask Raymond Adams to figure who did it and find the victim’s missing soul. Without memories of his life, he accepts the case to gain eternal peace. But the job is daunting:
24 hours to nab a killer…
24 hours to find a missing soul…
24 hours to unravel the victim’s exotic private life…
24 hours to stop a plot to send the universe into chaos…
With only the help of a possessed cop and a medium, Adams must trek through a Hollywood underground filled with pornography, prostitutes, the homeless, and sadists, along with supernatural monsters. But can he solve the case when his own haunting memories keep surfacing, telling him exactly what kind of man he was in life?
Sounds so intriguing right? It was. It starts off with Ray in the “abstract Realm” which you can think of like Purgatory. He isn’t at rest because he wasn’t good enough to go straight to heaven but not bad enough to go to hell, either. He also seems to have his life’s memories missing. He knows he’s dead, but not the other stuff. He is then given a chance to go back to the land of the living to help solve a crime committed against one of the “people in charge”. And so the story begins…
This is very well written. It’s like a detective crime scene story with supernatural creatures all over. You ride along with Mr. Adams-who in life was a private eye- and a cop, whom he has possessed with a fellow celestrial friend. Together they are led to a strip club with a stripper who is a medium-and then she goes along for the ride, too. Their dialog is hilarious sometimes, especially Ray, who doesn’t understand any form of technology, or slang terms, or all the new ways of life. I really like how at the end all the characters come together for one of those big surprising twists. No, I’m sorry, there will be no crazy cliff-hanger at the end of this one. And no, I will not spoil it for you.
I think my favorite character may be Jenn, the stripper/medium. First, she is whip smart, and knows how to handle her self, and isn’t afraid to use her looks and charms to get exactly what she wants. Second, she’s feisty, and I love that. Third, she also is part of that big ole’ twist I talked about and it’s pretty fantastic.
I must also say that the plot and weaving of the story line is pretty cool. There’s all these different celestrial beings that want Ray to either succeed or fail for their own reasons, and some are feeding him lines and giving him clues, but they really aren’t supposed to, and then he worries about who to trust and if they really are trying to help him. This was a fast read because nothing got boring or slow, and I would go with Adult readers as there are some graphic scenes and content. All in all, excellent, especially if you like mystery. 4 PAWS from me 🙂
Now I would like to welcome Mr. Louis Corsair for an interview!
Louis: Maghon was sweet enough to let me take up more of her blog’s space. The only thing I can do to repay her is by answering her very interesting questions.
Maghon: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated or did you always just know?
Louis: I didn’t always know I wanted to write. I always had a large imagination, which was a coping mechanism, but it never manifested as writing until I met Mr. Cunningham, one of my teachers in high school. The first creative piece I wrote was an in-between scene in the play by Arthur Miller, The Crucible. Mr. Cunningham liked it and gave me books about writing and Taoism. That year I decided that I would someday write.
Maghon: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Louis: If you mean the events and characters in the novel, then they were mostly the product of my imagination. I never try to copy a person and paste them on the page. It’s impossible for one–humans are much too complex to capture with just words alone.
I know, I know, writers are taught to “write what they know.” This is somewhat limiting. I prefer to write fiction that challenges my creativity and often this means exploring taboo and controversial subject matter.
Maghon: Did you know how things were gonna play out before you finished the book or did you just write until it flowed?
Louis: I think with genre fiction, you have to have a sense of where you are going. There is an enormous amount of planning involved, especially with a mystery. There were a ton of false starts to my novel. I mentioned to Franny that this is the second version of Absolution. The original version was only twelve hours long (if you’re familiar with the story or its premise you’ll know what this means). This helped me solidify its direction.
The longer version of the story was easier to plan. The scenes were easier to write too since I was familiar with its characters, most of them anyway. Lady Chris and Craig Deluxe were new additions.
Maghon: How did you come up with the concept of the Abstract Realm, and the “committee” leaders, etc?
Louis: It is the curse of the modern writer to want to be original. I wanted an urban fantasy that dealt with the afterlife, but I didn’t want Angels or Demons. I was looking for a fantasy world that was cyclical.
The Process, which determines where souls go, was there in the early version of the novel and it is in line with Taoist cosmology. It helped me build a meta-nature that is not at war with itself, like Heaven and Hell and Angels and Demons often are. The four realms are part of the same cycle of existence.
Since there is no war, the celestial beings running things had to be on the same side. They are the heirs to Elohim’s will, a noble ideal that never really understood human nature or how it could influence even a powerful being like the Executor.
But I think you wanted to know about the races. They had to be similar to other races of celestial beings that dominate urban fantasies. The Angelus, the Enigma, the Enforcers, the Pit Lords are the dominant celestrials. As far as actual “race” goes, they are members of the same family of beings. They all breed here on Earth for reasons that I’ll go into later.
Maghon: How do you chose when/which characters die in your books? Especially the main character in the beginning?
Louis: In my novel, I don’t approach death the way that say, George R. R. Martin does. This is the type of fantasy where death is a portal that takes your soul to different states of being in the cycle of existence. Even when characters die and their souls go to the Collective Whole to be recycled, they continue to exist at some level within newly formed souls.
Absolution starts with the main character’s death to introduce this view of multiple levels of being. So, characters die in the book and we get to speak with some of them later and we understand that some characters who have died long ago still exist–maybe not in the best of places, but they are there. Most writers are weary of trying this (unless it’s an established series like the Dresden Files). I mean, in a typical novel what can you do to the main character in the remainder of the story that compares to their death?
But what you want to know is how I decide which characters to not use anymore. That’s trickier. A murder brings Detective Adams back into the Realm of the Living. And I wanted this to be a definite end, the end of the victim’s existence. See the problem? With my view of death, the victim’s soul would simply move onto a different state of being. The solution was that I also had to make his soul disappear. And this solution created some of the other types of characters in the novel.
Maghon: Is this going to be a series, or have any continuations?
Absolution is the first instalment of the Elohim Trilogy. If I write future novels with Raymond Adams and Jenn and Harry, it must be as part of a new trilogy. Still, I don’t see this series going as long as the Nightside or the Harry Dresden novels have gone.
Maghon: How did you come up with the character Jenn, and did you do any research? LOL J
Louis: Oh, how I blush! I was in the army for eight years (which I’m sure some of you are tired of hearing about) and yes, my friends and I frequented nightclubs, bars, and the occasional gentlemen’s establishment.
I wrote Jenn to be the most stable character in the novel. If you notice, she doesn’t go through a story arc. Her world is very grounded in reality. But she is not perfect. I never wanted to create a female character that was perfect. I also didn’t want to write a character I would consider dating, you know, my perfect woman. I couldn’t handle Jenn or her sordid sense of humor.
Maghon: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Louis: There are too many to name. I am trying to rediscover William Faulkner and Hemingway. Richard Kadrey is fun (I read his first Sandman Slim book when I found out it had a similar premise to my own) and I think I’ll try Justin Gustainis. I’m also trying to find a female author to follow. After J.K. Rowling and Suzanne Collins, I’m left without alternatives.
Maghon: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your book?
Louis: I don’t even want to think about this question. I refuse to read my novel now just because I might want to go back and redo something; this is possible when self-publishing. The less I think of the book as something that can be changed, the happier I’ll be.
But, hmmm, the title. I should have googled “absolution” and “novel” to get an appreciation for the mountain of novels that share the same name. I won’t change it though. That’s final.
Maghon: What book are you reading now? Or what genre?
Louis: I am reading The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle. Currently, I’m trying to immerse my mind in fantasy that is surreal in nature to prepare me for the second book in the Elohim Trilogy, Ascension.
Maghon: Who designed the covers? And do you help with them? (it’s one of my favorite parts of the books)
Louis: The very gifted Timothy Lantz created my cover. Once he explained what he was trying to do–the vintage meeting the modern–I was hooked. I tried to help, but my ideas are mostly symbolic, which would have confused potential readers.
Maghon: If you could be one of your characters, who would you chose?
Louis: The victim, Giovanni. His was a different type of sacrifice, which I admire. I don’t know that I have the strength to do what he ultimately failed to do. But just to have the strength to try is admirable.
Maghon: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Louis: I think you should get together and have a bbq. The beer’s on me.
Hehehehe, Mr. Louis has no idea how much south Louisiana kids can drink… We’ll cause him bankruptcy if he offers free beer! LOL That was a great interview-maybe I’m biased because I got to ask the questions 🙂 But I want to thank Mr. Louis because he gave up his time, and answers, to me for sharing with you 😉 and, I know you’ve all been waiting, so let’s get to the best part!
Now I know I said I’m having a giveaway, BUT Mr. Corsair and Dark Mind Book Tours is also having A GIANT GIVEAWAY too, so I will tell you all about this now… My giveaway in an INTERNATIONAL e-book copy of Absolution to one winner. To enter, all you have to do is leave me a nice comment about something on this post. So, ya know, like say, HEY, nice interview, or HEY, I really wanna win a copy. You can get creative LOL I will pick a winner on July 4th, so that gives you almost a month to enter. Now, for the giant giveaway, there is a rafflecopter on the tour’s site that you can fill out to win all kinds of goodies. Go HERE and fill it out to be entered. That giveaway is ALSO INTERNATIONAL, so everyone can have a chance to win!! It’s a cool swag pack, so I think you should enter just because! LOL
I also want you guys to know that Absolution in e-book format if $0.99 for the whole tour! so from now until July 3rd, you can get it CHEAP!! 🙂 Here’s where you can find them…
Amazon UK (paperback)
Amazon UK (ebook)
Amazon US (paperback)
Amazon US (ebook)
Barnes & Noble
I would like to thank Mr. Louis Corsair, Dark Mind Book Tours, and of course, you guys, my followers, for stopping by today. I want to wish everyone good luck, with all the giveaways, and as always, Happy Reading my Gators!!