Monday, 10 November 2014

Blogger Book Fair Day 1: M. R. Graham

In the Shadow of the Mountains (The Books of Lost Knowledge)

Supernatural/Paranormal | Young Adult

In the twilight of the year 2003, a stranger arrives in the tiny town of Burns, Colorado. Whispers begin to fly as bodies appear, savagely mutilated, throughout the neighborhood, and the responsibility falls on two monstrously unprepared high school students to uncover the truth before the undead can destroy their hometown.

Chris Doyle is a slacker and a sci-fi geek, barely eking through his senior year of high school; Aaron Margolis is a child prodigy who could have graduated at age twelve if his parents had let him. They have never had anything in common until a woman is murdered and Aaron comes asking for Chris’s help – he is seeing Texans who cannot be real.

Then the high school’s English teacher disappears and is replaced by Daniel Leland, the sharp and reclusive newcomer, a man already convicted by public opinion. He says that he is a hunted man, and Aaron believes him, but Chris is not as sure. Doubts or no, Chris has no choice but to join up with the teacher when his best friend is kidnapped by superhuman forces, but this adventure is nothing like his comic books.

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The Medium (The Books of Lost Knowledge)

Supernatural/Paranormal | Adult

Lenny is good at teaching physics. He is good at fixing things, making friends, and not attracting attention. He is good at being a medium, helping spirits pass beyond the Veil. But as a vampire incapable of violence, he has always been a bit of a joke.

All it takes is a drink in a hotel bar, a stumble into the wrong place at the wrong time, to run him afoul of Sebastian Duran, a lunatic who controls other people’s minds better than he can control his own. Torn away from everything he knows, trapped and starved and under constant mental assault, Lenny’s best hope is Kim Reed, a wizard tasked with bringing down Duran. Kim cannot believe that Lenny is evil, but neither can she hide him, and while she battles for his freedom, Lenny is forced to confront his own potential for monstrosity.

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The Medium Excerpt


Lenny is good at teaching physics. He is good at fixing things, making friends, and not attracting attention. He is good at being a medium, helping spirits pass beyond the Veil. But as a vampire incapable of violence, he has always been a bit of a joke.

All it takes is a drink in a hotel bar, a stumble into the wrong place at the wrong time, to run him afoul of Sebastian Duran, a lunatic who controls other people’s minds better than he can control his own. Torn away from everything he knows, trapped and starved and under constant mental assault, Lenny’s best hope is Kim Reed, a wizard tasked with bringing down Duran. Kim cannot believe that Lenny is evil, but neither can she hide him, and while she battles for his freedom, Lenny is forced to confront his own potential for monstrosity.


Author Bio:


MR Graham is a native Texan who traces strong cultural roots back to Scotland, Poland, and England. A mild-mannered Latin teacher during the day, Graham transforms at night into a raging Holmesian loremaster and rabid novelist.

Though passionate about all scholarship and academia, Graham's training and true love lies with anthropology, particularly the archaeological branch.

Also, steampunk and vampires.

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Interview


When did you start writing?
Like quite a lot of other authors, I started writing pretty much as soon as I could hold a pen. In second grade, I filled something like eight black-and-white notebooks with a hideous, rambling Mary Sue epic directly ripping off the Unicorns of Balinor series. A couple years later, I followed it up with a hideous, rambling Mary Sue epic directly ripping off Star Trek: Enterprise, and in high school, I began the hideous, rambling Mary Sue epic that eventually matured into the Books of Lost Knowledge. It's been an arduous evolution.

What inspires your writing?
Everything. I carry a little notebook with me everywhere I go and jot down ideas as they hit me, be they from scenery or peoplewatching or just words in my head. I will also say unashamedly that I am inspired by the fiction I read or watch, and that a lot of my ideas are composed of preexisting tidbits, rearranged to form something new.

What is the best part about being a writer?
The best part so far has been the mind-blowing realization that there are at least a couple of people out there chomping at the bit to know what happens next, whether Lenny and Kim are going to be okay, what happened to Daniel to make him the way he is, whether there's something bigger going on in the shadows behind the action... These characters aren't just in my head, anymore. There are other people - besides me and a few immediate friends - who care about the figments of my imagination.

I remember a few very special books that made me cry, or scream in frustration, or jump out of my chair in triumph, and it's a sort of puzzlingly ecstatic feeling that I may have written one that does those things for someone else.

Is there something special or unique about you or your book you'd like to tell us about?
I'm not all that special. I live in a pile of books - some of which I wrote myself.
I'd like to think that my books are special. My approach to paranormal fiction isn't quite like any I've seen before. That is to say, My Vampires Are Different. They're not especially sexy, though they can be quite evil and quite dangerous or painfully inept. They're just flawed individuals trying to survive a flawed world.



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