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Monday 14 November 2016

ℚ♫ The Bulls of War: Chronicles of the Andervold Thrones [1] - E.M. Thomas

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about The Bulls of War (, Rokhish Press, 404 pages), a Epic Fantasy Adventure, book one of the Chronicles of the Andervold Thrones series.

"The characters are ones that you want to know more about... and there is plenty going on throughout the plot to keep readers interested. With a whole bunch of action, a decent amount of romance, and plenty of other things as well, it's a book I would recommend... Overall, really good." - Readers' Favorite

|| Synopsis || Teaser: KCR Preview || Author Q&A || About the Author || Giveaway & Tour Stops ||

A very warm welcome to E. M. Thomas; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter!

Here at BooksChatter we love music; do you have a music playlist that you used in The Bulls of War, or which inspired you whilst you were writing it?

"I actually listened to a few lists like this [one below] off and on – great motivation for writing epic fantasy!"
What was the inspiration for The Bulls of War?
"Several sources of inspiration – I am a huge fan of the epic tale, be it film, print, or otherwise. I am likewise a devout history buff, specifically focusing on Ancient Rome and Greece. Thus, when I put pen to paper in creating the epic fantasy The Bulls of War, it was the perfect chance to marry those interests."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"Certainly some characters take traits from me, but for the most part, I tried to make each one distinct from the next – hence the lengthy appendix attached to the end of the novel, which is really only a fraction of the supplemental material I produced.

My interest in ancient history is also reflected in this novel, as the world itself is inspired in large part by the Late Roman Empire."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for The Bulls of War - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"The Bulls of War, as you might suspect by its title, is a story of war and conflict in a variety of forums – by the sword on the battlefield, by the wit in the halls and temples of the Capital, etc. Thus, it seemed fitting that the cover should capture the utter chaos of battle."
Why should we read The Bulls of War and what sets it apart from the rest? What makes your book unique?
"This book is in many respects more akin to a historical fiction than a classic fantasy novel. While the world of Andervold (in which Bulls takes place) is obviously fictional, the land would look fairly familiar to a 2nd or 3rd century Roman. Moreover, the focus at the outset of the tale isn’t based in a complex magic system, notwithstanding some non-Earth-like elements in other parts of the story. I find an apt comparison to Bulls is George Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire with a twist of Ancient Rome (instead of late Medieval England)."
Can you tell us something quirky about The Bulls of War, its story and characters?
"The citizens of the Rokhish Empire will have names that ring quite familiar to students of Latin. Indeed, some early drafts inadvertently reflected actual Roman names. For some of the other races, however, the challenge in creating an unrecognizable language was more acute, the influences more diverse; that process made me appreciate those books and programs that have undertaken the same task."
Who would you recommend The Bulls of War to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"I think this book appeals to both fantasy fans and historical fiction fans. Specifically, those fans that like layered characters, multiple yet interwoven plot strands, and big, bloody battles. If there’s any disclaimer I would put out there (and some of my reviewers have said the same), it’s that I don’t pull any punches when presenting war and conflict. Much like Braveheart, Gladiator and movies of similar ilk, I get descriptive in the midst of the fray, doing my utmost to make you feel like you are shoulder to shoulder with the soldiers I’m describing. While I try very hard to avoid delving into gratuitous violence, readers should take caution nonetheless – I’m not trying to blindside anybody! Again, to hearken back to A Song of Ice and Fire, if you can handle those books, then you can easily handle my Andervold series."
If you could / wished to turn The Bulls of War and the Chronicles of the Andervold Thrones series into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"I love this question. For Kyrus, I picture a younger Jason Isaacs or Tim Roth. For Tyghus, a younger Christian Bale or Daniel Day-Lewis; someone more contemporary might be Sam Heughan. Antinax would be well-suited by Anthony Hopkins. Connie Nielsen or Caitriona Balfe should be Tygha; Lena Headey or Susan Sarandon should be Wollia.

As for directors, I’d like someone with a proven track record of handling the historical or fantastical epic. I.e., Peter Jackson, Michael Mann, Ridley Scott, and so on."
What do you like to write and read about? Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"I primarily write fantasy and historical fiction, and yes, those are my favorite fiction categories. I’ve said it before, but I think it’s really important to not only write in the categories you like to read, but to really study why it is that you like certain subject areas."
What is your writing process?
"At the risk of providing a free plug to the person who created the approach, I use what’s called the “snowflake method”. At its core, it’s a method of gradual outline expansion prior to writing the actual novel: starting with the very basics of a story (just one sentence), you then then create a paragraph from that sentence, then create multiple paragraphs, until before long you have a fully fleshed out outline for your novel. In tandem with that, the method stresses the creation of character biographies, again using a method of gradual expansion: first age and appearance, then filling out their profile with as much detail as possible (family tree, motivations, fears, likes/dislikes, telling the story from their point of view, etc.).

While some find the method too restrictive, I find it to be just the opposite for my personality. I swear by it."
What is in store next?
"The first full-length book to follow The Bulls of War will be Fortress of the Sun, a historical fiction about ancient Greece – specifically, the battle of Corinth in the third century B.C. Fortress takes place within a larger historical arc for which I intend to write several more volumes. A sample is available on my website, for those interested.

In the nearer term, I will be releasing short stories set in the world of Andervold. I’m excited about these, as they will add several point of views to some of the events that took place in Bulls, to go along with some unrelated stand-alone tales from Andervold.

Bulls, of course, is only Book I of the Chronicles of the Andervold Thrones, and its sequels are fully fleshed out and ready to go."
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"For many years, I had a pair of hilarious little bearded dragons, which for the uninitiated are a type of mid-sized Australian lizards that have become immensely popular in the USA. They were full of personality, as their breed has a reputation for possessing dog-like traits (i.e. owner recognition, reasonable intelligence, playful). They kept me company for hours on end while I wrote in my den, and though I recently lost the last of them in October, some fun memories remain."

The Bulls of War
Available NOW!

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Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Unknown said...

Thank you so much for hosting! Great looking site!

Nikolina said...

I am really enjoying following this tour, thank you for all the great blog posts and excerpts!