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Blog Tour: A Q&A with Kelly Gay, a review of (118.) The Hour of Dust and Ashes, and a giveaway...

September 1, 2011
I'm so excited to be part of the blog tour for Kelly Gay's The Hour of Dust and Ashes

kelly gay
About the author:
Kelly Gay is a two-time RITA Award finalist, a 2010 finalist for Best First Book from the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance, and a recipient of the North Carolina Arts Council’s fellowship grant in Literature. She also writes a YA series as Kelly Keaton. Kelly lives in North Carolina.

Find Kelly online at her website, her blog, on facebook, and on twitter.

*squeal* Kelly took some time to answer some questions for us. How lucky are we?? *grin*
 
drey: Hi Kelly! Thank you for taking the time to visit drey's library and answer some rambly questions for me... :)  
Kelly: Hey Drey! Thanks for having me!

drey: Do you listen to music as you write? If so, what's on the writing-Charlie-Madigan soundtrack playlist? How does this differ from the writing-Ari soundtrack playlist? :)  OR do you prefer to write in quiet?  
Kelly: I usually write without music. I tend to get distracted by lyrics. But I do sometimes listen to music to get into a certain mood. I did that a lot with Ari's books, but not so much with Charlie -- and I'm not sure why that it is... Hmm.

drey: What inspired your world--the blend of Atlanta and portals into other dimensions? 
Kelly:  My love of mythology and ancient civilizations. I 'm very inspired by the notion that there is a grain of truth (if not more) in ancient myths and legends, that there was some kind of truth, or personal experience, or witnessed event that inspired the myths we know today. And in my case, the idea is that the beings from Elysia and Charbydon were the inspiration and basis for many of the world's ancient myths of gods and demons. 

drey: Are you as kick-ass as Charlie is? How much of her is based on you or someone you know?  
Kelly: Yes, but only in my mind! Physically I couldn't hold a candle to Charlie. She'd kick my ass in a heartbeat. Picture me going, "Ow! Stop it! That hurts!". But that aside Charlie and I are very much alike in terms of force of will and our love of family. I draw on a lot of those protective feelings that I have for my own daughter when I write certain scenes. I might not be physically trained to take down bad guys, but put my kid or family in danger and I'd stop at nothing to protect them, and Charlie is no different. Charlie isn't really based on anyone I know or myself even, but more of someone who I'd admire and root for and relate to in many ways. 

drey: Did you research Charlie's fight scenes? How/where?  
Kelly: To some extent, yes. Mostly, I just see the fight in my mind and try to show it on paper. Sometimes I'll get hung up on details and will turn to research or ask my resources (you know like, what does a bone breaking in a certain part of your body really sound like) or I enlist my kid to reenact a move to see how my arm bends or if something is even possible. She relishes those moments (which usually involves me saying something like, "Not *that* hard!") and somehow we always end up on the floor laughing.  

drey: What's going on with Charlie and Hank? Is there any chance for a something between these two? Pretty please? 
Kelly: Haha! I wish I could tell you everything. I think Charlie and Hank are noticing and considering each other on a level they never have before, but the timing really stinks for Charlie as well as Hank with his past coming to light. But I promise there is more to come on them both in the 4th book.

drey: Where do I get my own hellhound? I love Brim!  
Kelly: Well, if Emma has her way and rescues every hellhound she can find, you'll have more than enough to chose from! Just head to Atlanta's Candler Park and listen for the howling. ;-)   

drey: I'm on my way! Every girl needs her own hellhound...

When can I get more Charlie?  
Kelly: The 4th book comes out next summer. So a year, but I hope it'll be worth the wait! 

drey: I'm pretty darn sure it will be! Gotta find out what happens with Hank... Can't wait! *grin* Thank you so very very much for stopping in today!

the hour of dust and ashesAbout the book:
To save her sister, she must stop a silent killer. . . .

Protecting Atlanta from the off-world criminals of Underground is tough enough, but now Detective Charlie Madigan and her siren partner, Hank, learn that the addicts of the offworld drug ash have begun taking their own lives. Ash makes humans the perfect vessels for possession, and something or someone is leading them to their deaths. Charlie is desperate to save her addicted sister, Bryn, from a similar fate.

As New Year’s Eve approaches and time runs out, Charlie makes a deadly bargain with an ancient race of beings and embarks on a dangerous journey into hellish Charbydon with Hank and the Revenant Rex to save Bryn and make it back before it’s too late. Only, for one of them, coming home means facing a fate worse than death. . . .

Title: The Hour of Dust and Ashes (Charlie Madigan #3)
Author: Kelly Gay
ISBN-13: 9781451625479
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, 2011
Purchase at IndieBound, Amazon, The Book Depository
Source: Pocket Books

drey's thoughts:
The job never stops when you're Charlie Madigan. Now that the fate of the world is in good hands (for the time being!), she's got to track down the reason ash addicts are committing suicide, preferably before anything happens to Bryn... In the course of her investigation, she finds that not all is as it seems, and the fate of the world may not be quite as happily-ever-after as she'd thought. 

Charlie is one of my favorite female characters in an urban fantasy. (Now why does that sound like an award category? Hmm...) She's not perfect, but she'll do the right thing no matter what it takes--and if it involves her family or her friends just doing the right thing isn't going to be enough.

In this third installment she goes all out to help her sister and in doing so finds out that there's so much out there she doesn't know. She gets to meet sylphs (eek!) and go to hell. Literally. How much more fun can she have? Shall we talk about the shadowy creature who shows up whenever she uses her power? Or how about Hank's past--that comes back to bite him in the behind, as pasts are wont to do? Never mind that he didn't do anything wrong.

Juggling everything takes a lot out of Charlie, and the ending leaves even more for her to pick up in book four. Which I want to get my hands on, like right now!

drey's rating: Excellent! Kelly Gay does not disappoint with the action in The Hour of Dust and Ashes, or with the story and character development. And I love that her cover girl's covered up (except for the lil' midriff shot in The Better Part of Darkness)!


Have you read The Hour of Dust and Ashes? What did you think? And if you haven't, here's a chance to win a copy for yourself!

Giveaway!
The publisher has generously provided two copies of The Hour of Dust and Ashes for you, if you live in the US (no PO Boxes, please)! To enter, fill out the form below. Good luck!

5 comments:

holdenj said...

I enjoyed the Q&A with Kelly very much. And the info about her interest in mythology too. I have seen you praise these books before, must get started!

drey said...

Julia, you should pick these up--they're one of my favorite series (and yes, I know I have a lot of 'em!)...

krystal-larson said...

Thank you! This book sounds great :)

drey said...

Thanks for stopping by, Krystal! :)

Denise Z said...

I would love to read this book. Thank you for the giveaway opportunity.

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