Thursday, 8 May 2014

Fledgling Blog Tour - Guest Post and Secret Word #15

Title: Fledgling
Author: Nicole Conway
Release Date: April 29, 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC

Can one boy stand between two kingdoms at war?

Jaevid Broadfeather has grown up as a wartime refugee, hiding from the world because of his mixed racial heritage. He feels his future is hopeless, until a chance encounter with a wild dragon lands him in Blybrig Academy—a place usually forbidden to anyone but the rich and royal. But Jaevid’s case is special; no dragon has voluntarily chosen a rider in decades, so the proud riders of Blybrig must begrudgingly let him join their brotherhood despite his bloodline. Lieutenant Sile Derrick, a sternly tempered man with a mysterious past, becomes his instructor and immediately takes a peculiar interest in Jaevid’s future.

While struggling through the rigorous physical demands of training, things begin to go awry. Jaevid witnesses the king’s private guards kidnapping Sile in the dead of night. When none of the elder riders are willing to help him, Jaevid begins a dangerous adventure to save his instructor.

Everything Jaevid learned at the academy will now be put to the ultimate test.

Dragon Tales: Monsters of Myth

The dragons of Maldobar weren’t always so commonplace. Once, they were thought to be creatures of myth and legend, rarely seen inland by anyone at all. They lived wild on the eastern coasts, far away from human eyes. They nested on the steep cliffs overlooking the dark, stormy seas, where no one could reach their eggs—well, except for one lingering threat. Their only natural enemy, called shrikes, are another flying predator from the jungles of Luntharda. They are much smaller, but also much faster in flight. They are fond of stealing dragon eggs and hatchings as an easy meal. That is, if they can make it past the fire-breathing parents. But few people ever saw dragons in the wild. They were secretive, dangerous creatures who only made contact with humans in defense of their nests. This usually ended with villages being burned, farms being destroyed, or worse.

But in the thick of a great battle, the dragons became something much more than a terrifying myth. Things were looking grim. Knights and soldiers were dying by the thousands. All seemed lost, until a dragon appeared through the smoke of battle. He was the first dragon to choose a rider—a lone knight—and the two fought together to turn the tide of the battle. That was how the dragonriders began. They became a symbol throughout Maldobar of power, freedom, and victory. More dragons appeared and chose riders. A brotherhood was formed, and at their center was the creed that said anyone who was chosen by a dragon, no matter his race or social standing, was destined to join their ranks and must be allowed to join them.

I knew what she meant. Every spring, Ulric packed up his tools and materials onto a wagon, and left for Blybrig Academy. The new riders started their training just as the weather was getting hot, and Ulric had to take molds and build brand new saddles for them. It was when he made most of his money, but it also meant that he’d be gone for a while. He was always completely exhausted when he came back. In a month, the snows would melt in the Stonegap Pass, and Ulric would start packing his tools again. If any other knights wanted a saddle from him, they’d have to get it before he left, or wait until after spring.

About the Author

Nicole is the author of the children’s fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES, about a young boy’s journey into manhood as he trains to become a dragonrider. She has completed the first two books in the series, and is now working on the third and final book.

Originally from a small town in North Alabama, Nicole moves frequently due to her husband’s career as a pilot for the United States Air Force. She received a B.A. in English with a concentration in Classics from Auburn University, and will soon attend graduate school.

She has previously worked as a freelance and graphic artist for promotional companies, but has now embraced writing as a full-time occupation.

Nicole enjoys hiking, camping, shopping, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. She also loves watching children’s movies and collecting books. She lives at home with her husband, two cats, and dog.
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