Monday, December 3, 2012

Blog Tour: Giveaway + Interview with Amy Lignor (author of The Angel Chronicles)

I'm the December 4th tour stop for the Gilded Wings blog tour :)

As part of the read-along, here's my portion of the excerpt:

Anya shook her head. She never liked it when one person had the power to either improve life or make you suffer. She was from the old school, as her babushka used to say, and believed there was only One who was honest enough to decide her destiny.

“There was a bad one here yesterday. Made my heart sick, it did.” Joe rested his large body against the wall. “A young woman was waiting here. Polish, I believe. Her fiancé was supposed to come get her. He’d sent for her a while back and she was really excited to finally meet him.”

“But...that’s a wonderful thing,” Anya remarked.

“Should’ve been. But the man sauntered in here, took one look at her and changed his mind. He walked out—just like that,” Joe said, snapping his fingers. “Man said he thought she’d be better looking and he didn’t want her. Poor girl was shipped back to Poland today.”

“That’s terrible!” 

“Aye. Maybe the best thing for her, though.” 


“It might be better to live in a country that’s mean to everyone, instead of living with a man who’ll take it out on her and no one else ‘til she dies.”


Amy Lignor began her career at Grey House Publishing in northwest Connecticut where she was the Editor-in-Chief of numerous educational and business directories.

Now she is a published author of several works of fiction. The Billy the Kid historical The Heart of a Legend; the thriller, Mind Made; and the adventure novel, Tallent & Lowery 13.

She is also the owner of The Write Companion, a company that offers help and support to writers through a full range of editorial services from proofreading and copyediting to ghostwriting and research. As the daughter of a research librarian, she is also an active book reviewer.

Currently, she lives with her daughter, mother and a rambunctious German Shepherd named Reuben, in the beautiful state of New Mexico. 

Find her on:

Today, we have Amy Lignor here at Bookcase to Heaven™ for an in-depth interview. 

Hi Sel, thank you for having me on your blog; I really appreciate the chance to ‘meet’ your fans!

Glad to hear that, Amy!


Why did you decide to write a series based on angels? Why not vampires, werewolves or fey?

LOL. Well, that’s a two-parter, really. One: The characters of Until Next Time and Gilded Wings have been with me for a long time. I suppose people could call Matthew my ‘imaginary friend’ that I found in my head when I was 13 and going through a rough time of losing my grandfather. The other part is far less emotional, but more of a personal choice. I’ve been known to say that - as a reviewer who reads about forty books per month - the ‘fanged ones’ have worn me out. Twilight certainly opened the door wide for that specific fantasy character, and I am thankful that with that came the acceptance of other ‘creatures’ like angels, but I have a feeling vamps and werewolves will never be in my future.

Then, what sets your novel apart from the other YA books about angels?

When it comes to Matthew and Emily, the most unique part about them is the fact that they aren’t the ‘fallen,’ or the ones kicked out of Heaven or struggling to get back in, etc. They are very much a team that loves their home - their home loves them - and their struggles come from real life, when they are assigned as heroes. I love to put them in history - real locations, historical places, with real people, etc. - to see how they would do in any certain age or time period. But the love they have for what and who they are is never questioned.

Well, that's true. Too many angel-themed YA novels are about fallen angels. I guess it's refreshing to see angels with hope and love, rather than angsty aggressive ones (cue: Patch)!

What is the one thing you want your readers to take away after reading Gilded Wings

I want them to literally be taken back in time and see the way the Gilded Age was - from the very cool things that happened to the very disturbing treatment that occurred. I have a feeling they will note that not much has changed in the long run. I want them to see how Matthew and Emily handle that - the good and the bad - and how they deal with the love and sacrifice of it all, but also really enjoy the adventure at the same time.

That is interesting! Most of the angel-themed YA fiction are set in the present. Glad to hear that THE ANGEL CHRONICLES is tackling angels from a whole new world and perspective. 

As readers, we often picture characters in our heads. This time, I'd like for you to illustrate to us how the characters actually looked in your mind. If this series is adapted into a film, what is your dream cast? 

This is going to sound a lot like Rowling, but the supporting cast are the big ‘celebrity’ guns in my mind. Gabe and Mike have always been Kiefer Sutherland and Colin Firth - those voices are unforgettable. Mark would have to be Johnny Depp or Robert Downey, Jr. because they own that seriousness, but also that wink and a smile, enjoying life. When it comes to Emily and Matt, to me, that would have to be a worldwide search for the ‘unknown.’ I would like them not to be Hollywood celebrities because that innocence and those wide eyes at being part of a ‘dream’ is necessary for the angel/warrior team to bring to the table.


I’m really curious, why is your Goodreads profile picture that of a lion?

The New York Public Library has always - and always will be - my muse. That building and those lions - Patience and Fortitude - are what make my mind run. I would actually be extremely pleased to work there or even live in their basement, because that place is such an inspiration. I also use that lion in a very prominent way in my action/adventure series (Tallent & Lowery) which will appear on December 1st. Not to mention, using my own picture would scare readers away. Did you ever see the three witches at the beginning of Macbeth? I’m the one in the middle. LOL.

Teehee, that witch?! It's okay, witches charm me ;) So, if you had the chance to be anybody in this world, even fictional characters and historical personalities, who would you choose?

There are so many. I am a huge fan of wanting to discover how the human mind works - especially the minds of writers. Being Jane Austen and seeing what she saw (and finally knowing who Mr. Darcy really was) would be cool; as well as someone like Poe. Up there in that head of his were nightmares and tales the likes of which no one has ever seen since, so it would be very interesting to be him and know how he thought of all that - what he saw, the people he knew. Writers fascinate me.

You fascinate me too *winks* Do you prefer tragedies or happily-ever-afters?

I don’t like tragedies. Some are extremely well-written, but unless based in history, I’m not really a fan. Most likely, because if I want a tragedy all I have to do is turn on the news. Happily-ever-afters? They’re certainly more fun and entertaining, but I really like the mysteries that cause people to think - the puzzles that can be a true thrill ride!


You cited Jane Austen as one of your influences amongst many others, how has she influenced your writing? Also, have you gotten to meet any of the authors who influenced your writing since you've been published? (excluding Jane Austen, of course ;)

Jane Austen is an inspiration because she was a writer during a time period where women were not accepted as such. I mean, her father was used to get her beginning stories published because she could not. She was an observer of life and she questioned everything from male versus female to wealth versus poverty to society standing, etc., and I like that. She was a tough chick when tough chicks weren't welcomed. The greatest thing in real life is that I was sent a response from Dean Koontz, who is one of my favourites  I had never sent a ‘fan’ letter before, yet I did for Odd Thomas and he sent a response in the mail about how my humor made him fall off the couch. That was extremely cool and is now framed! As far as meeting in person, I swear I haven’t been out of the house it what seems like years because the writing took over. But moving back to NYC in February, I hope to run into a great deal of friends that I’ve met with over Skype. Thank goodness for technology!

I roger that! If not this interview wouldn't have happened :) 

Can you remember the time when you first knew you had to become an author? Tell us about it.

My writing labs in grade school were the only thing I liked about school. We would be given our assignments due for the year and by Christmas I was done and wanted more. But it was when my freshman high school history teacher told me that my report was the absolute best and sent it into a contest where it won, that I knew writing was what I HAD to do. Our class had been assigned ‘Nicholas and Alexandra’ to read and watch videos about. That’s one of the reasons the opening scene of Gilded Wings is set in Russia during their time period. The girls in class picked Alexandra and the boys picked Nicholas, and I picked Rasputin. I thought he was the most intriguing and powerful character. After that, I couldn’t keep my mind on anything but the stories I wanted to tell (which did not make my Math, Science teachers - or parents - very happy!)

But, I bet that you had your humanities teachers tickled!

Last question: anything you have to say to the aspiring writers out there.

I’ve heard so many stories being an editor and helping out debut authors and such, that the advice is always the same (and sounds so ‘advertising slogan’). But I really say not to give up! Receiving ‘no’ form letters after sending out a query is beyond hard and disappointing, but taste is relative. And what one agent or publisher doesn’t like, another may absolutely love. So never take the ‘first words’ you get back as gospel - because they’re not. Also, make sure you find an editor. All writers need one - even the best have them, because after writing and reading your book over and over again, you will never be able to correct everything. So make sure the book is a ‘team’ effort.

Thank you so much for having me here today!

Thank you for giving my questions so much thought, Amy!


Until Next Time: The Angel Chronicles, Book 1 Summary

How does a girl choose between the one who steals her heart and the one who owns her soul?

Matt and Emily were created for a specific job. Raised and trained as the ultimate angel/warrior team, they are sent down to save, defend, judge and forgive, depending on the 'life' they've been assigned. What they don't realize is that the power of human emotions, such as love, anger, passion and fear can take over even the best of souls, causing them to make mistakes and follow paths that lead to confusion and heartache.

When the reason for their training is finally revealed, the angel/warrior team find themselves thrust into a world they know nothing about. Matt takes over the life of Daniel, a young man with a great deal of baggage. Emily becomes Liz, a girl living in a remote village who relies on nothing more than her own strength to survive. A violent storm erupts one night, and framed in the window of Liz's establishment is a frightening face. Let in by the soul of a Good Samaritan, the two visitors bring with them a past full of secrets that could literally change an angel's path and a warrior's plans.

From murder to redemption, this angel/warrior team must find a way to keep the faith they have in each other in a world that's ripping them apart.

Gilded Wings: The Angel Chronicles, Book 2  Summary

The Beloved Angel-Warrior Team from Until Next Time Returns!

When Matt and Emily are sent on their second mission they have no idea how truly dark human nature can become...

Emily never wanted to face humans again. With the heartache that went on down below, she’s still trying to figure out how to save souls that don’t deserve saving. The only one she wants to see again is Jason - the young man she fell in love with who became the soulmate she simply can’t forget...

Matt was trained to protect and defend the souls down below. Longing to feel the heartfelt emotions that come from being human, Matt wants nothing more than to have just one life - one chance - to live and love the girl of his dreams...

The powerful team find themselves in a brand new century, living in the Gilded Age of New York City. Emily takes over the body of Anya, a young Russian girl who arrives on Ellis Island after a hideous tragedy. There she meets up with a strangely familiar young man by the name of Drew Parrish, who helps Anya survive in an unknown world of luxury, snobbery and…obsession.

What Anya’s inner angel doesn’t know is that the soul she loves is also back. This time around Jason goes by the name of Max Carrow. Once a quiet and kind boy, he’s now part of the ‘Four Hundred Club,’ and wants nothing more than to be among the most admired as he climbs the shaky ladder of society’s elite.

As two worlds merge, Emily and Matt struggle under the weight of their “Gilded Wings.” Not only will they have to figure out who they should fight to save, but they must also face a romantic choice that could destroy them both. 

Published November 1, 2012.

Buy on:
Kindle | 
Nook | iBookstore | Smashwords | PDF

Giveaway (Aw, yeah!)

Check out the rest of the blogs who are touring with us ;)

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  1. Sel, thanks for hosting Amy for such a wonderful, in-depth interview. What a treat! Thanks again for the fantastic post. We appreciate it! :)

    1. Glad you dig it :) Thanks for having me as part of the tour too!

  2. Sel, thank you for the interview - I had a great time and I am really excited to be a part of your awesome site!

    1. Thanks, Amy! I had an equally awesome time too :D


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