Renegade by Mallory McCartney Blog Tour with Excerpt and Giveaway!

The time for Kiero’s reign in prosperity is over.”

Six years before the Black Dawn Rebellion, Adair Stratton and Emory Fae are following in their parent’s footsteps and living at The Academy, a home for those who are gifted. The pressure to uphold the future of their parent’s dream falls on them. An outcast and feared by most, Adair longs to break away from the expectations dictating his future. Even if Emory tries to make him see differently. An unexpected group of friends keep him there, but as whispers of unexplained disappearances start reaching from the capital, Adair starts to doubt The Academy is all it seems.

An unexpected visit ignites new tensions as the roguish king from across the Black Sea, Tadeas Maher of the Shattered Isles, and his heir, Marquis Maher sail to Kiero. Notorious for their pirating and wrath- for the first time in years, they demand the Fae’s listen to their proposition for a new treaty, holding the news of Nei’s father’s abrupt death over them. Caught in the middle of politics- Adair and Emory, with the help of their best friends Brokk and Memphis search for the one thing that matters most- finding out the truth.

In this gripping prequel to Black Dawn, their world is tipped upside down as unlikely alliances are made. War ravages through Kiero and is torn apart by acclaimed Kings. Through the throes of betrayal, lies, hidden magic and love, Adair is faced with a life changing decision- to fight or to bow to the darkness within him. 

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He collided back into the present so hard he rolled over and emptied the contents of his stomach. Gasping for breath, he threw up his iron walls, sealing them tight, and the well of voices quieted until it was just him, only to notice how silent outside the tent was. The hairs on his arm rose as he silently stood, slinging his pack over his shoulder and unsheathing his weathered sword. Everything made sense. How hard Tadeas pushed them to reach the capital, how loud they were being. It was practically ensuring Cesan would come sniffing. To fall into the king’s trap. Only for Tadeas to kill him with no chance of justice. To hear both sides.
Rage ripped through him of how fast Roque had risked them all, had bent to the claim of being King. What did Cesan know? What was Roque afraid would be found? Cold sweat soaked through his shirt as he pushed the thoughts down for now. The firelight danced outside, and he could see Brokk and Alby’s silhouettes, their voices a low murmur. That’s when he heard the howling. Distant at first, like a humming in the night. Then drawing unnaturally closer, faster, the sounds of hundreds. He shot out of the tent, taking in his friends bathed in the glow from the fire, all of them frozen. It was the same effect as losing all sense of clarity. The lurching panic, and then helplessness, as you grappled to hold onto anything.
The screaming started first at the north end of the camp. Brokk stood, all color draining from his face. Memphis spun, taking in the nightmare forming. Their bodies were like sleek armored plates, gleaming and muscular. Their elongated torsos were like serpents, twisting and flexing as they propelled forward with long black legs. Their bald bodies shimmered like water against the firelight, reflecting their drooling maws and inky teeth. Their orange eyes gleamed with madness as they cut down through tents and bodies. He had heard of creatures of dark ancient magic before. Ones that were told to children to keep their fears heightened and curiosity in check. But as he saw the first monster rip the throat out of one of Tadeas’s men, this was the farthest thing from bedtime stories of old.

Utter chaos broke out as Brokk threw himself forward, shifting in one motion, as his colossal paws thundered, shaking the earth. Alby drew his sword, and immediately became invisible. Roars rose from the creatures as he assaulted them, unseen. Heart thundering, Memphis drew his own. Everything moved in slow motion. He felt himself take in the numbers of the monsters as they poured into the camp, their rage and their might crashed into their own. It was a battle of tyrants. Yelling, he bounded forward, his ability already two steps ahead of him, reacting in his fear. His talons exploded, slashing their dark minds, grasping their will, their bodies, holding them still as Brokk made his landing blow. He ducked. Slashed. Growling, thrusting his blade forward. His ability cut and unbound the creature’s minds. He was a darkened duet, of body and ability, the two forces creating a lethal harmony. Their inky talons, and severed bodies filled his senses as he heard The King of the Shattered Isles roar.  



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Mallory McCartney currently lives in Sarnia, Ontario with her husband and their three dachshunds Link, Lola and Leonard. When she isn’t working on her next novel or reading, she can be found day dreaming about fantasy worlds and hiking. Other favorite pastimes involve reorganizing perpetually overflowing bookshelves and seeking out new coffee and dessert shops.

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What inspired you to write your first book? 
Thanks for having me! The idea for Black Dawn came to me in grade eight, its hard to say exactly where it came from, but it stuck. I would talk to my cousin for hours, about the world and the characters there. The original manuscript named, “Kiero” I finished going into grade nine, and then left alone for seven years. It was in the last three years my husband and cousin/ best friend, pushed me to re write the story, and that’s where Black Dawn Rebellion was born.

Do you have a specific writing style? 
I feel like part of the journey of becoming an author is finding your voice. I know I adore writing epic fantasy, with multiple POV, but as you learn more, your craft grows. I think one of the best things is to look back on your first projects, remembering and seeing your voice and style in those works, to see how they progress throughout the years. I am looking forward to seeing how my style grows throughout my career. 

How did you come up with the title? 
Renegade’s title came to me about two years into writing the story. This book was first planned as a novella, but once I got into it, the idea grew and I knew I had to dedicate a full novel to it. Anyways, I was working on Brokk’s chapter, and there is this moment, when his character realizes his world is crumbling around him, and him being so loyal and trusting, he really doesn’t know how to re define himself without the structure of the Academy. Writing this chapter all I could think internally was “be the renegade Brokk! Push yourself!” My characters really dictate their storylines, taking me to some unexpected places, but in the hours writing this part, Renegade stuck.  
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? 
The importance of friendship. Renegade ripped my heart out writing the story of how Adair became the villain, he got so lost within himself and his pain, that he allowed the darkness in him to dictate his future, and by closing himself off from his friends, his isolation became his monster. I hope that readers will take away and remember that there are always resources to reach out if you are feeling alone, or need help.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life? 
There is very little that is based on events, except for some parts of how Adair feels. This year I was diagnosed with general anxiety disorder, and finding solace in my writing, I poured those days I was feeling alone, or isolated, scared and angry into Adair’s character.

What books have most influenced your life most? 
There are so many! But the big ones are Harry Potter, The Song of the Lioness series, 
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Sarah J Maas for sure! I adore and respect Sarah’s world building and would love to be able to sit down and talk to her about her craft!

What book are you reading now? 
Dear Evan Hansen by Val Emmich (which is also my favorite musical) and I am LOVING it

What are your current projects? 
I’m currently working on a couple of things! Finishing the third book in the Black Dawn series, Kingdom of Broken Iron is first on my list. I am also working on some new projects, one being a new ya series that I drew inspiration from Spawn and Sleeping Beauty. I am also working on a contemporary stand alone novel.

Do you see writing as a career? 
I absolutely do! Writing is my passion, and I’m excited to see where it will take me!

Can you share a little of your current work with us? 
I would be happy to! This is from my new ya series (currently untitled).

“ The lights danced across the room, flashing in time with the music pounding like a heartbeat. Silver, golds, blues, oranges, reds – ribboning around the sea of churning bodies, washing away any distinctive features, turning everyone into shadows. Smirking, sipping my drink, the whiskey burning down my throat, warming my belly. Bobbing my head, looking around the basement that usually held rows upon rows of merchants and goods. But tonight, the underground world was stripped of the bleakness, jack o lanterns lining every possible inch of wall, accompanied by tables of candy, laced punch, and savory appetizers. Blinking against the assault of smells drifting across the dance floor, I flicked my gaze up, the bats fluttering through the night sky, a thousand blazing stars flaring down at them. The mini full moon acted as mood lightning- my mom’s signature with her magic. Taking another sip, I adjusted my leather jacket, slipping into the crowed. Bodies crushed against my own, jumping, swaying, as they DJ manipulated the energy. There was always this moment, where it wasn’t hundreds of different souls, but just one churning mass with the music, and you lost yourself to it. For one second, I wasn’t the prince of Harrow, I was just another addition to a memory, to a night that no one would forget.”

Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)? 
I am starting to within Ontario! Of course I would adore to do tours outside Canada, but we will see what the future brings! 

Who designed the covers? 
Cora Graphics- and she is AMAZING!!!

Do you have any advice for other writers? 
No matter what, never give up. The road to publishing is different for every author, but if your dream is to get there, never stop writing. Draw encouragement from friends and family and writing groups, it can feel lonely pursuing a career as an author, but there are amazing resources out there!

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers? 

I will never be able to thank my readers enough but THANK YOU. From the deepest parts of my heart and gratitude for believing in Emory’s story and the world of Kiero. Thank you.


Giveaway Details:
  • Two (2) winners will receive a signed copy of Renegade by Mallory McCartney (INT)


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