Thursday, September 28, 2017

Review: The Sky Throne by Chris Ledbetter with Interview and Giveaway

The Sky Throne 
by Chris Ledbetter
Month 9 Books
April 18, 2017
YA Fantasy
300 pages

Tour dates: Sept 18 to Oct 20, 2017

Content Rating: PG + M (No f-words but there may be some mild profanity, and mild religious expletives such as "damn", "hell" and "Oh God!", some depictions of violence. No drug use or underage drinking. Some semi-mature themes - suggestion of sexual misconduct by certain characters, but not the actual performing of it.)

Duality dwells at every turn, and an adolescent Zeus will learn that all too well when Hyperion attacks his family on Crete.

When the dust settles, his mother is unconscious and his best friend left for dead.

Stacking epic insult upon fatal injury, Zeus discovers the woman who raised him is not his biological mother. But to ensure her safety while she recovers, a heavy-hearted Zeus leaves her behind to seek answers at Mount Olympus Preparatory Academia.

Zeus embarks on a quest to discover who ordered the attack on his home, avenge the death of his friend, and find his birth mother. When some of his new schoolmates vanish, Zeus's quest is turned upside down, and the only way to make things right is to access the power of The Sky Throne, confront a most dangerous enemy, and take his life back.

On his way to becoming king of the Greek gods, Zeus will learn to seize power, neutralize his enemies, and fall in love.

To read reviews, please visit Chris Ledbetter's page on iRead Book Tours.

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Zeus and mythology collides with modern day teenage spice to create a fast-paced and engaging read.

Zeus isn't exactly an ideal student, gets kicked out of school thanks to his row of pranks and is faced with house arrest and goat tending as a punishment when he gets home. After sneaking out one night to attend a bonfire, he returns to an unexpected attack by an Elder deity, Hyperion, which leaves his best friend dead and his mother injured. Still fighting grief, he learns that the deity was actually after him. At the Olympus prep school, he hopes to find answers no one seems to be able to give him, but instead, is caught up in the middle of a conflict, which threatens more than just the school or him.

The author has created an intriguing world by mixing aspects of Greek mythology with those of a modern day, teenage world, while still keeping the setting based in ancient mythology. Zeus is presented as a teenage boy with tons of potential, but has enough rough spots to make him difficult to handle. He's a prankster and a woman's man. . .kind of. The Greek gods, according to mythology, weren't exactly moral or nice, and many of Zeus' traits are hinted at in this teenage version, but in a way, which still makes him likable and easy to cheer for. Especially when he starts to learn what he's capable of and the plot shifts into action pure.

There is never a boring moment, and the tension and action build through-out the book, creating a wonderful climax toward the end. Although some aspects mirror the mythology, other scenes and happenings follow their own imagination. This makes the story unpredictable and offers several unexpected twists and turns. The plot flows well and adds the layers neatly. There's even a bit of romance, which fits well to Zeus' character and holds its own surprises as well.

The world building was well done in so far that it's easy to picture the scenes and characters. The first chapter doesn't flow as smoothly as the later ones do, simply because there is a lot of name dropping. Although this draws direct connections to the mythology, it's a bit heavy for readers not completely familiar with the material. Mythology fans, however, will grasp it up and feel right at home. The mixing of the modern into the ancient setting makes for an interesting background with aspects readers can easily relate too. Still, at times, this combination clashes and comes across a little forced.

All in all, this was a fun read with lots of exciting moments and tension. Young mythology fans are sure to enjoy this and will be disappointed only because the story comes to an end.

Watch the Trailer: 


Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

My ideas generally come from a lot of different places. I observe people constantly. I pick up on things in the news. But mostly I write stories that I would’ve read in high school. I write for the reluctant readers out there.

When did you write your first book and how old were you?

I began writing in 2006 when I was 36 years old. Late bloomer, I know.

What do you like to do when you're not writing?

When not writing, I coach my daughter with soccer or play video games with her. Or read. Or binge watch Marvel shows.

What does your family think of your writing?

My family is very, very supportive. I’m grateful for this.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

How much frickin’ hard work it is to put out a good story. I never thought it would be easy, per se, but I’m not sure I was quite prepared for how difficult it would be. It took me nine years and six manuscripts before I published my first story.

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

I’ve written three short stories and nine or ten full novel manuscripts, many of which may not see the light of day. I can’t really say I have a favorite. That’s like asking someone who among their children is their favorite. Haha.

Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?

I hear from some readers, and they have all been positive. I do read my reviews. Some say that you shouldn’t. But I have a pretty thick skin. And I do learn from even the reviews that aren’t five stars. They can’t all be five star, amiright?

Have you even been sent fan art?

I actually have only received one piece of fan art. It was fabulous!

What do you think makes a good story?

Everything begins with the characters. The most exciting plot means nothing if the reader doesn’t care about the characters. But after that… a story can never go wrong with a quest, a mystery, and a countdown.

What is that one weird quirk about yourself, that no one else knows?

I must eat Skittles when I revise. I can’t think clearly without them.

And here he is. . .

Chris Ledbetter is an award-winning author of short fiction and novels for young adults. “Jason’s Quest,” a short story retelling of the Jason and Medea Greek myth was published in the anthology, Greek Myths Revisited. His first full-length novel, Drawn earned him two awards, Library of Clean Reads Best YA 2015 and Evernight Publishing Readers’ Choice Award Best YA 2015, as well as a USA TODAY “Must Read” recommendation. His second novel, Inked, concludes that duology. The Sky Throne is his newest young adult novel. The second book in the series is set to release in 2018.

He's a proud member of SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators) and a strong supporter of the Need for Diverse Books. He now writes and lives in Wilmington, NC with his family, including three cats.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ facebook ~ Pinterest

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Ends Oct 28

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