End of the Lie (Anastasia Phoenix #3) by Diana Rodriguez Wallach Blog Tour with Interview :)

End of the Lie (Anastasia Phoenix #3) by Diana Rodriguez Wallach
Publication Date: March 4, 2019
Publisher: Entangled Teen

With her harrowing tale of espionage and near death experiences finally out in the open, Anastasia Phoenix thought things would be better. That she and her friends had outsmarted Department D, the criminal empire her parents helped create.

She thought wrong.

Former friends have turned to enemies, causing more innocent lives to get swept up into the dangerous world her parents created. Now it’s up to Anastasia to stop the damage before anyone else gets hurt—or worse. She embarks on a treacherous trail from Poland to Prague, and old rivals emerge at every turn. But when the final confrontation occurs, will she be too late to protect the ones she loves… or even herself?

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[Looking directly into the camera. Footage released by Phillip Stone Media, Inc.]

“Hi. My name is Keira Phoenix, and I am the daughter of international criminals. In May, I was kidnapped by a man named Craig Bernard who, at the time, I thought was my boyfriend. We had met weeks before at a bar in Boston. The anniversary of my parents’ death had just passed, so I was upset when he showed up, acting nice. [She scoffs, rolling her eyes.] I invited him to a party I was hosting, then later that night he drugged me and took me from my home. “I don’t remember the abduction—one minute I was in my bed, the next I’m waking up on an airplane, my head pounding and my hands bound together with plastic cable ties. [She rubs her wrists.] I was held captive in Italy for months, by armed guards, and I had no idea why. Eventually, I learned that Craig Bernard and all of the men involved in my kidnapping used to work for my parents. Only not as engineers for the Dresden Chemical Corporation. They were spies. All of them, especially my mom and dad. It turns out that my parents, along with Randolph Urban, CEO of Dresden, conspired to create a criminal enterprise known as Department D, which stretches back long before I was born. We have photographic proof that my parents were involved in the assassination of Italy’s Prime Minister Aldo Moro in 1978, and we have a journal, in my father’s handwriting, and eyewitness testimony that proves he was involved in the fake terrorist plot that defamed nearly a half dozen Islamic women in London two years ago along with the reporter who covered the story, Julian Stone. “I believe I was taken by enemies of my parents as payback for their past criminal activity. Evidence of my time in captivity is undeniable. [For the camera, Phoenix holds up a proof of life photo with a church bulletin, and a posed photo of her body in the trunk of a car.] I was rescued by my sister, Anastasia, and her friends, who acted alone, because the Boston P.D. refused to listen to them, for reasons none of us understand. After my rescue, my sister, her friends, and I made statements to Italian law enforcement and the CIA, and I was instructed to stay in hiding for my own protection. But I was never safe. No one around us is safe. Tyson Westbrook, a seventeen-year-old friend of my sister’s, was murdered recently as a way to get to us, to lure me and Anastasia out of hiding. When that didn’t work, when we continued to fight, these people poisoned one us—Marcus Rey, son of Dresden executives Carlos and Rosario Rey. “They’re picking us off one by one, and we don’t know how high up the corruption goes. Our parents were hired by world leaders to create propaganda for decades. Now these same people are covering up their crimes against us—including kidnapping, poisoning, and murder. They’re trying to silence us, take us out, and prevent us from exposing the truth behind Department D and its shell corporation, Dresden Chemical. “We won’t stay silent anymore. “We won’t stay in hiding. “And we won’t trust law enforcement to act on our behalf. “That’s why I’m coming forward now. I’m telling my story, in my own words. I need the world to know what’s going on, so hopefully no one else gets hurt. “I’ve learned a lot about my parents recently, and you will, too, over the coming weeks. They did a lot of bad things. I know that. And they might even still be alive. [She cocks her head.] I’ve heard the rumors, like you, but I swear, if they are, I haven’t seen them. “However, I am certain that the only way my sister and I will ever be safe is if we bring down the Dresden Chemical Corporation and its corrupt underbelly, Department D. We need to take back our lives and stop paying for crimes we didn’t commit. “My name is Keira Phoenix and I survived Department D. But will you?”



Diana Rodriguez Wallach is the author of the Anastasia Phoenix series, three YA spy thrillers set to debut beginning in March 2017 (Entangled Publishing). She is also the author of three award-winning young adult novels: Amor and Summer Secrets, Amigas and School Scandals, and Adios to All The Drama (Kensington Books); as well as a YA short-story collection based on the Narcissus myth, entitled Mirror, Mirror (Buzz Books, 2013). In 2011, she published a highly regarded essay in Dear Bully: 70 Authors Tell Their Stories (HarperCollins). It was the only essay chosen from the anthology by Scholastic to be used in its classroom materials. Diana is featured in the anthology, Latina Authors and Their Muses (Twilight Times Books, 2015), and she is currently on staff as a featured blogger for Quirk Books. In 2010 Diana was named one of the Top Ten New Latino Authors to Watch by LatinoStories.com, and she placed second in the International Latino Book Awards. She is an advisory board member for the Philly Spells Writing Center, and is a Creative Writing instructor for Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Talented Youth. She holds a B.S. in Journalism from Boston University, and currently lives in Philadelphia.

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By Diana Rodriguez Wallach, author of End of the Lie, book three in the Anastasia Phoenix series.

What inspired you to write your first book? 
I’ll warn you, this story is kind of strange. I started writing my first novel because I had a dream one night that I was a young adult author, and I dreamt the concept for an entire series of books. Seriously. When I woke up and told my husband, he reminded me of a vacation we took five years earlier through New England.
We had stopped in Salem, MA to see the witches’ houses. While there, I decided to visit a psychic (when in Rome, right?). So I sat down and the psychic immediately said, “You’re a writer.” And I was; at the time, I was a reporter. I told her this, and she asked what I wrote about. Intentionally trying to be cryptic (I mean, she is a psychic, shouldn’t she already know?), I told her that I wrote about “business.” She swiftly said, “No. I see you writing books, little books, like children’s books.”
I had never considered writing a book before. But after the dream, and my recollection of that psychic encounter, I figured it was “a sign.” So I sat down and started writing my first novel.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life? 
Yes! This probably surprises people because Anastasia Phoenix is a series of spy thrillers. But I can actually trace the first spark of inspiration for this series back to some people I met in high school. I was attending a college fair in Philadelphia, and I was listening to students talk about Boston University. One kid was glowing about the professors—Pulitzer-prize winners from the Boston Globe, The Washington Post and The NY Times. Then he spoke about a former communist spy for Czechoslovakia during the Cold War, Lawrence Martin-Bittman, who taught budding journalists how to tell if they were being fed false information or “fake news.” While I never got to take Bittman’s class, years later when I decided to attempt an international thriller packed with super spies, that story came back to me as if it had always been waiting. I wanted my world of espionage to be focused on a unique specialty that offered me some creative freedom, and disinformation fit the bill.
I met with Lawrence Martin-Bittman years ago, and we had a fascinating conversation that led to many of the espionage elements in my novels. Sadly, he’s since passed away, but I named a CIA agent in my books after him, Martin Bittman.

What books have most influenced your life most? 

I’m a child of the ‘90s, and I was obsessed with Christopher as a teen. I read everything from Chain Letter, to Remember Me, to Fall Into Darkness. I would completely geek out if I ever met him in person. He made me love the YA genre, and he’s one of the reasons I write for YA now.

What book are you reading now? 

I just finished reading Stephen King’s It. Yup, all 1,138 pages! I’m working on my first YA horror novel, so I wanted to get a sense of what a masterpiece in the horror genre looked like. It was inspiring.

Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members. 

The Latino community. My first novel, Amor and Summer Secrets, is set in my dad’s hometown of Utuado, Puerto Rico. That novel placed second in the International Latino Book Awards, and since then I’ve received so much support from Hispanic readers and book reviewers. Last year, I was on the cover of Al Dia newspaper in Philadelphia to celebrate the launch of Lies That Bind. One of my blurbs for Proof of Lies is from bestselling Latina author Alisa Valdes, and I’ve been featured on many Latinx author lists. I feel like the publishing community is actively expanding the diversity of children’s books, and while there is still a ways to go, the community of authors in this genre is working hard to support one another.

Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)? 
Yes! I love to travel. All of my books have settings both in the U.S. and abroad, and all are based on places I’ve visited. So PROOF OF LIES is set in Boston, Tuscany, Rome and Venice. LIES THAT BIND is set in England and Rio de Janeiro. And END OF THE LIE is set in Boston, Poland, Germany, and Prague. I even try to include local festivals in each book that I personally attended. In LIES THAT BIND, Anastasia and Marcus attend Bonfire Night in England, and in END OF THE LIE they stumble upon Wet Monday in Poland. These were such unique experiences that I’m glad I was able to capture forever in my novels.


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