Saturday, 6 October 2012

Review & Character Interview: Daughter of the Red Dawn Alicia Michaels

I am a real fan of YA fiction and fantasy, so when the opportunity arose to work with Alicia, I jumped at the chance. It's such a pleasure having Alicia Michaels visiting us on her virtual book tour; the more I discover about her, the more amazing amazing I realise she is.
Her new release Daughter of the Red Dawn is such an amazing book, but I'm getting ahead of myself!

In Alicia's stop with us, you will find a wealth of teasers and discover that little bit more about this wonderful author and her new release including; a character interview with the beautiful Adrah, a couple of sneak peek excerpts, a little bit about the lovely author, our review (of course) and a fantastic giveaway! And breathe...I know how exciting and jam-packed full post. Enjoy! Bex
(GIVEAWAY at the end of the post)

Title: Daughter of the Red Dawn (The Lost Kingdom of Fallada Book One)
Genre: YA Fantasy/YA Romance
Length: Novel
Publisher:  Anchor Group
Description: These are dark times in the land of Fallada, and I fear that they will only continue to grow darker. Only the return of those we’ve lost will even the score.
It will begin with first line of the prophecy, which foretells of a red sun over the desert sky…
            --Adrah, Queen of the Fae

On the outside, seventeen year-old Selena McKinley is like any other teenage girl. Yet Selena has always felt as if she doesn’t belong and is counting the days to graduation and her freedom from the small town that makes her feel so out of place, when the arrival of a stranger turns her world upside down. Selena will learn just how different she is and the truth of where she comes from.
A lost princess, they call her, the catalyst for a war involving a world that Selena was taken from as a child. An evil queen obsessed with her own beauty with a plan to enslave the human race.…the notion seems so silly, yet Selena knows in her heart that it is true. Then there is Titus, the shape shifter whose blue eyes and claims of destiny hold her heart captive. Can Selena find the strength to do what she must while following her heart?

Release Date: October, 2012

How amazing is this video! Now check out our review too!
Daughter of the Red Dawn is immediately engaging. The introduction of the main character Selena effectively captured my attention with the successful description of her personality and characteristics. No doubt there will be many young adult readers who will be able to relate to her character.

Selena is a highly likeable young woman at the fringe of society and at the brink of so many changes. It's these many unforeseen changes that makes Daughter of the Dawn such a compelling read. The action introduced to the book starts pretty early on and continues in pace and action. There's always a fear when there's so much action at the start of a book that it could easily fizzle out creating a lull; however, there most certainly are not any lulls in this book. The action, teamed with the character developments, especially the blossoming relationship between Selena and Titus, builds superbly well at a controlled pace with a lovely descriptive narrative.

The ending successfully sets up the reader for the next installment in this series, and creates a tidy ending, maybe even a little 'too tidy'. However, as the first installment to a YA fantasy series, Alicia Michaels has done a marvelous job.

Character Interview 

In preparation for writing the Lost Kingdom of Fallada series, I had to do a lot of research. I mean, I had to make sure that I was able to accurately document the wonder and beauty that is Fallada. There are so many wonderful things there, that I know I won’t be able to include them all in one book. Good thing there are going to be seven!

For this book, though I thought it would be best to really get to know the woman responsible for the mission of the Brothers Grimm, which is to find the seven lost princesses of the kingdom. This is a very personal quest for her and she cares about it very much. When I met with her, we sat down and had a very insightful conversation and I am glad to be able to share that with you today.
First off, I was stunned by her beauty. Queen Adrah is tall, nearly seven feet, if not more. Long, white-blonde hair falls to her ankles and whispers around her as if it as a life of its own. Her eyes, like those of all Fae, are green and change shade according to her mood. Right now they are a pale green and hint at her comfort level with me and current state of peace. Her secretive, Mona Lisa smile hints at the mystery and wisdom that is Adrah. I am both comfortable and nervous around her at the same time.
Alicia: Hello Adrah! It’s such an honor to be invited to your home, Osbel Tower. It is so beautiful here!

Adrah: Thank you, Alicia. Osbel Tower was a labor of love. It was built for myself and the Royal Fae court. From here we are able to watch all that goes on within our kingdom.

Alicia: Speaking of which, why don’t you tell me a little about what’s been going on in Fallada?

Adrah: Our world is now seeing its darkest time in all of our history. It saddens me to see my beloved Fallada in such a state. The queen of the West, Eranna, has made it her mission to become the sovereign ruler of the entire kingdom, as well as the human world. She finds humans to be weak and pitiful, and thinks to rule them. She is a vain woman, obsessed with her own appeal and envious of anyone who displays more outer or inner beauty than her. She does not take kindly to any threat to her power. In an attempt to keep any of the royals from rising up against her, she has banished our seven to the world of men. My mission is to see them returned to their thrones.

Alicia: That sounds like quite an undertaking. Some would say impossible. I hear that you have some help, though, in the form of the Brothers Grimm. Pardon me for asking, but aren’t they dead?

Adrah: Ah, that is what they wanted people in the world of men to think when they crossed over into our world. You see, before we had to close our world away from yours because of the treachery of humans, people were allowed to come and in and out of Fallada at will. Unfortunately, the greed and violent natures of men ruined it and we had to separate ourselves. The Brothers Grimm have been our friends for a long time and we knew that we had nothing to fear from them. When they requested to live out their last days in Fallada, we allowed it. They have been gifted with immortality until the mission is complete.

Alicia: That’s incredible! I never would have thought such a thing was possible.
Adrah: Anything is possible for those who believe.

Alicia: Well said, Your Majesty, well said. Now, tell me a bit about Selena, the first of the seven princesses to be found.

Adrah: Ah, Selena. Perhaps you know her as Red Riding Hood? When I gifted her the red cape and hood she was reluctant to wear them but soon found it useful and is now never seen without it. She is quite a spitfire, our Selena. She was reluctant at first when told who she really was and that she was to be the beginning of Fallada’s revolution. It was hard for her, learning all at once that she is not only a princess, but the catalyst for a war, but she has adjusted nicely. She has become more than we could have ever hoped.

Her story is an inspirational one. A girl that never fit in anywhere in her life, has finally found her place. I do hope that you readers will have a chance to find out for themselves where the tale goes. It is truly an honor to have you telling it.

Alicia: The honor is all mine, Your Majesty. Thank you for talking with me today!

Sneak Peek Excerpts:

Excerpt 1:

As Selena contemplated taking another lap around the field, she turned and found the lone figure of a boy standing at the edge of the meadow, which was ringed by cedar trees. Her eyes widened as she took him in from head to toe: impossibly black hair falling into his eyes, stony features, long legs, and slender form. In his skinny jeans, Converse sneakers, black t-shirt, and sleek sunglasses, he was unlike any other guy she’d ever seen in Twin Oaks, where Wranglers and large belt buckles were the dress code.
He raised his chin slightly in acknowledgement and Selena stood rooted to the spot, unable to move or even utter a sound as the boy stepped into the tall grass. The sun glinted off of his black hair, giving it a slightly bluish tinge, and his dark sunglasses mirrored her reflection to her as he closed the distance between them. The grass seemed to part to make way for him, and Selena couldn’t make her legs function as he approached.
He is strange, she thought as he stopped in front of her with his hands in his pockets. But strange was good. It meant that she was now one of two people that didn’t belong in Twin Oaks.
“Hey,” he said.
One word, but Selena couldn’t help but notice the silky smooth tone of his voice. He smiled, showcasing a row of perfectly straight, white teeth. The canines were a bit on the long side but she liked them. She also liked his pale blue eyes, which he revealed by pushing his glasses up into his hair.
“Hi,” she answered back breathlessly. She tried to smile, but her lips wouldn’t move. She fiddled with the strap of her backpack instead.
“I’m Titus,” he said, rocking back and forth on the balls of his feet.
“Selena,” she answered.
“Pretty name,” he said. 
“Thanks. I like your glasses.”

I like your eyes. I like your hair. I like your skin. 
Selena bit back the words, embarrassed by her almost instant crush on the cute stranger.
“Are you new in town?” she asked, trying her best not to gawk at him and failing miserably. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen you before.”
“Not that new,” he said with a shrug. “I’ve seen you around a lot, at school, on the track field, at the Dairy Queen.”

Selena’s eyes widened in surprise. “You have?”
He nodded, a sly smile spreading across his face. “Oh yeah. When I saw you today walking through this field I thought, ‘now’s the perfect chance to get to meet the prettiest girl in Twin Oaks’.”
Selena couldn’t help but laugh at that one. Prettiest girl in Twin Oaks? Hadn’t he laid eyes on Allyson, the cheerleader with the biggest boobs a teenage girl had a right to have? Or Janelle, who’s long, perfectly shaped legs had earned her the honor of being captain of the dance squad? Or what about Trisha, whose hair was that perfect shade of blond that most girls had to buy a box of hair color to achieve?
This guy obviously didn’t get out much.
Selena snorted. “Yeah right.”
“It’s true,” he said, taking another step toward her. Selena felt her hands shaking as he reached up to stroke a lock of her straight, red hair. “Besides, you’re different and I like different.”
“You must be the only guy in town that does.”
He laughed. “Would you believe me if I told you that we were two of a kind? That I’m as different as you are?”
Selena frowned. “What do you mean?”
He leaned even closer, his nose nearly touching hers as his grin widened. His white teeth flashed in the sunlight, the sharp canines displayed proudly.
“I saw you,” he whispered. “Running.”
Selena clutched her stomach as she felt nausea welling up in her. From the expression on his face, it was obvious that he didn’t mean to say he’d seen her on the track at school. How could she have been so stupid? She hardly ever allowed herself the freedom to run uninhibited in broad daylight. She had thought herself alone, completely oblivious to the watching eyes of a boy named Titus.
What to do?
Titus’ smile was blinding, a flash of white teeth that left her stunned while she tried to find words … any words … even ‘please don’t tell my secret and make me end up on the six o’clock news, or on a lab table with a bunch of tubes coming out of my body’.
Her mouth opened, but nothing came out. As panic gripped her, Selena could think of only one thing to do.

Excerpt 2:

“So, your parents let you walk home alone every night?”

Selena shrugged. “Not every night. I only work four days a week.”
“That’s not what I meant and you know it.”
“Look, it’s just me and my grandmother and we don’t have a car. Besides, this place is the size of a dime. Everything’s within walking distance and everybody knows everybody.”
Titus laughed, shoving his hands in his pockets as they walked. They were back in the field where they’d met earlier that day. She wasn’t sure why, but ever since he’d shown up at Dairy Queen, her nerves had been standing on end. Once again, his presence was putting her intuition on high alert. As they walked through the tall grass, she glanced over at him and studied his profile.
He was even more stunning in the moonlight, with the dim glow of the night on his pale face and dark hair. His eyes almost glowed. Selena lowered her eyes as he looked up at her just in time to catch her staring.
“I take it you don’t like it too much.”
“Seriously, I hate it here. I’m counting the days to graduation. I’m buying a car, putting all my stuff in the back of it, and getting the hell out of Ole Dirtpatch.”
“That’s my nickname for it. Don’t tell me you like Twin Oaks. I can tell by looking that you’re not from around here. You’ve got the look of a city boy about you.”
He stopped, bringing her up short beside him. He turned to face her and a wistful expression crossed his features.
“Not exactly,” he said. “My home is beautiful though. There’s nothing like it in the whole world.”
“You miss it.”
He nodded. “Yes.”
“What happened? Why did you have to leave?”
“It’s complicated.”
“You don’t want to talk about it.”
“Do you want to tell me what happened to your parents?”
“Point taken.”
He pressed his lips together in a firm line and turned to lead her on. Selena loped along beside him, her insides burning with curiosity. Despite the nervous tension he created in her, she couldn’t help but want to know more about him. What was that saying about curiosity killing the cat? Yeah, that was pretty much where she was headed.
“My parents died in a car crash when I was a baby,” she blurted. “There is no other family so Gram took me.”
“I had to leave my home because of a war,” he answered. “My parents are now prisoners of that war and it is unlikely that I will ever see them again.”
She’d known he had an exotic look about him. A war that had imprisoned his parents meant he was from another country. But where?
Selena gasped, her throat clenching with emotion as she looked back up at him. His face was etched in agony, the blue eyes lowered and filled with sadness, the corners of his mouth turned down and pinched. She reached out to grab his hand. His fingers were icy against her warm ones.
“I’m so sorry.”
He looked down at her, his face grown harsher in the moonlight, the glint in his eyes deadly. Selena’s heart skipped a beat and her breath caught in her lungs, but she didn’t flinch as she met his narrowed gaze with her wide-eyed one.
“You shouldn’t be here, with me,” he said, his voice a low growl.
Selena frowned. “But you—”
“I saw you earlier Selena, running through this field. You were so … ” he trailed off, his Adam’s apple bobbing as he swallowed, “ … beautiful. If only you knew the power you possessed, how important you are, and how dangerous I am to you…” he paused again, groaning in frustration and tearing his gaze away from hers. “Run, Selena.”
“What are you talking about? What are you saying?”
His voice was animalistic this time, a roar that shook Selena to her very core. He leaned toward her, barring his teeth as another primal growl rumbled through his chest. Selena was sure that his canines lengthened, glistening behind his lips in the moonlight.
Scared to death, Selena gladly took his advice.
She turned on her heels and ran from Titus for the second time in one day.
Once home, Selena was grateful to find that Rose had gone to bed for the night. She checked all of the doors and windows to be sure that they were locked before fleeing to her room. She closed the door and sank to the floor, Titus’ words whirling through her mind like a Texas twister.
If only you knew the power you possessed … how dangerous I am to you.
So she hadn’t been exaggerating. He’d told her with his own mouth that he was a danger to her. And to think, she’d almost ignored her intuition and allowed herself to be alone with him in an empty field at night. The situation had ‘horror movie’ written all over it.
But then, curiosity reared its ugly head once again. If Titus was so concerned about hurting her, why had he come to the Dairy Queen that night? Why pursue her after she’d run away from him this afternoon? How was he this cute, charming boy one minute and a menacing psychopath the next?
One thing as for sure, Selena did not have any interest in finding out.
Well, maybe just a little. 

The Author

About the Author:

Alicia Michaels has always possessed a vivid imagination and strong ambition. At the age of 12 she decided that she wanted to be a writer, and promptly went about penning her first novel. Years later, she is releasing her first Young Adult Fantasy series based on the fairy tales as written by the Brothers Grimm.
When the Army wife and mother of two isn’t taking care of her home and family, she’s reading, writing, or arguing with the characters in her mind. She also enjoys cooking, movies, and music. Oh, and a good cup of coffee.

Stalker Links:

 Prize List 
2 lucky winners will receive a $10 Amazon gift card
5 lucky winners will receive Ebook copies of Daughter of the Red Dawn
Please let us know what you think about this post and Daughter of the Red Dawn. Are you looking forward to it?

 >>>>>>>>>a Rafflecopter giveaway<<<<<<<<<

Where to next?

October 1: The Romance Writer’s Reads
Promo Post, Extended Excerpt, Giveaway, Guest Review

October 3: Candace Shaw
Promo Post, Interview, Extended Excerpt

October 5: Sapphyria’s Book Reviews
Promo Post, Extended Excerpt, Giveaway

October 6: Bex N Books
Review, Character Interview, Giveaway

Review, Guest Post, Giveaway

Promo Stop, Review, Giveaway

October 24/25: Book Lovin’ Mamas
Review, Guest Post/Giveaway

Review, Guest Post, Promo

Promo stop/Giveaway


  1. I would really like to read this book! It sounds fantastic!

    1. Thanks Maryann :) It really is fantastic.

  2. Sounds excellent cant wait to give it a whirl :)

    1. Maybe a double review is in order :)

  3. Thanks for the exciting excerpts

    1. Thanks for taking the time to read the post. The excerpts are pretty amazing.

  4. This book looks really good! I love anything that is Fae... I can't wait to read it!

    1. I hope you manage to get to it soon. It's pretty awesome.

  5. Thank you bex n books, I have already read and reviewed this book. Its fantastic.

    1. Thanks for taking the time to read our post and comment <3

  6. I have never read anything with Fae in it....I would love to start. Her book sounds so GOOD!

    1. Thanks Natalie. I hope you get chance to read it soon.

  7. This looks like a interesting book

    1. It's most definitely worth your time Lisa.

  8. this book sounds really interesting, love the character interview, those are always fun to read :)

  9. Interesting! And, as always, thanks for the giveaway! <3


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