Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank T.J. Klune for stopping by today.
Title: Withered + Sere (Immemorial Year #1)
Author: T.J. Klune
Publisher: DSP Publications
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Genre: Apocalyptic/dystopian, Bisexual
Once upon a time, humanity could no longer contain the rage that swelled within, and the world ended in a wave of fire.
One hundred years later, in the wasteland formerly known as America, a broken man who goes only by the name of Cavalo survives. Purposefully cutting himself off from what remains of civilization, Cavalo resides in the crumbling ruins of the North Idaho Correctional Institution. A mutt called Bad Dog and a robot on the verge of insanity comprise his only companions. Cavalo himself is deteriorating, his memories rising like ghosts and haunting the prison cells.
It’s not until he makes the dangerous choice of crossing into the irradiated Deadlands that Cavalo comes into contact with a mute psychopath, one who belongs to the murderous group of people known as the Dead Rabbits. Taking the man prisoner, Cavalo is forced not only to face the horrors of his past, but the ramifications of the choices made for his stark present. And it is in the prisoner that he will find a possible future where redemption is but a glimmer that darkly shines.
The world has died.
This is the story of its remains.
The Future of the End of the World
Okay, chances are if you’re reading this, you’ve already read Withered + Sere. If you did, great! I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did writing it. There’s a possibility you’re glaring at this blog post right now, mumbling death threats at me given that unfortunately timed cliffhanger that ended W+S. And it probably didn’t help that the excerpt for Crisped + Sere included at the end only added to the mystery of what Lucas is exactly, and just how important he is to the Dead Rabbits.
If you didn’t read it but plan to, for the love of god, don’t read this post yet. There are spoilers about W+S throughout. Legit, I’m not even kidding. Proceed at your own caution. Seriously. Go away until you’ve read the book. Then I will welcome back with open arms and whisper in your ear that I love you.
Where was I?
Aw yes. Cliffhangers.
Because I’m a bastard.
I know this day and age, we’re all about instant gratification. We want the things we want and we want them now. Our stories should be wrapped up in neat little bows, and we shouldn’t be left with a billion questions and why the hell would you even do that, Tj?!?!?!?!?
If you’ve followed along with this blog tour or heard me speak about W+S in the past, you know it was initially meant to be one book. I planned on telling Autumn/Winter, and maybe someday, writing a second novel of Spring/Summer, if I thought there was another story there.
But W+S became bigger than I ever expected it to be. To do it justice, the story of Lucas and Cavalo, of Bad Dog and SIRS, had to be split into two. This decision was made after I’d already submitted the story as one book to my publisher.
But there already was a natural place to cleave the book in half. Looking back, either by a stroke of luck or maybe some sort of subconscious effort on my part, part one, Autumn, was almost a completely separate type of story than part two, Winter.
Autumn (which eventually became Withered + Sere) is cerebral. It’s showing the deconstruction of a man named Cavalo, whose sanity is no longer a sure thing. I don’t think it has been for a very long time. With everything he’s gone through, with all that he’s seen, I don’t think he’s capable of being completely sane. And that shows partly through his actions, partly with those he chooses to surround himself with. To me, he almost reads like a borderline sociopath. I suppose that can be open to interpretation, but whatever he is, he’s not sane. I think that much is clear.
Winter (which is Crisped + Sere) is a war novel. It clocks in at over 100K words, and if I had to guess, I would say maybe half that are action scenes. In fact, it could probably be argued that the last half of the novel is one gigantic action scene, starting with Cottonwood and extending to a place in the north: Dworshak. (Hint: you can google Dworshak, which is real and in Idaho. It might even give you a few clues as to where the story is headed.) There is sex and violence and then more sex and more violence. The romance between Cavalo and Lucas, however twisted it may be, comes to the forefront.
It was strange, really, seeing just how easy it was to split the book. But in the end, it made sense to do so, even if you do have to wait for the pay off. But good news! Crisped + Sere is done, the edits are finished, the cover has been completed (and if you thought the cover of W+S was epic, you haven’t seen anything yet. A little hint: the same photographer did it, Kyle Thompson (he also did the cover for Into This River I Drown), and it’ll feature Lucas in all his glory).
In fact, the only thing we’re waiting on now are the illustrations that Blake Dorner is doing. At the time of me writing this blog post, he’s completed three of the six, and they are fucking glorious. There is one scene that I absolutely needed him to draw involving a moment between Lucas and Cavalo and he absolutely nailed it. And speaking of getting nailed, he’s also illustrating one of the sex scenes. So. You know. Pr0n.
Even better? It doesn’t end on a cliffhanger! There’s a firm resolution where most questions are answered. See? I’m not a complete bastard.
A few things:
–Since Crisped + Sere is a novel about war, there will be casualties. Fair warning.
–Bad Dog will not be one of those casualties. I’m a bastard, but I am not a monster.
–It’ll be out in…August. No firm release date yet, but I’ll reveal it with the cover probably sometime after my next book, Wolfsong, comes out in June.
–Patrick is a terrible person who will do terrible things. He’s probably my favorite villain I’ve ever written. And you will hate him for what he’s about to do.
–Wookie Cry Face
–I will be writing Books III and IV, Spring and Summer, and even though there is a clear ending to Autumn/Winter, there are breadcrumbs I’ve left behind that show where the next two books will be headed. You’ll have a good idea of what’s to come.
–The titles for book III and IV will pull from the same poem described in W+S and C+S, ‘Ulalume’ by Edgar Allen Poe, which was a big inspiration for these books. I referenced a small stanza in W+S, but you can read the whole thing here:
Can you figure out what they’ll be called? Should be pretty obvious, if you think about it.
If you’ve read the book, thanks. If you’ve followed along this blog tour and read my inane ramblings, thanks for that too. (Can you believe this is actually the first blog tour that I’ve ever done in all my years being published? Crazy, right?) I’ve said it before, but I think it bears repeating: thank you for supporting my work as you have. Because of my readers, I’m able to do this gig full time now, and I will be eternally grateful to all of you. As long as you keep buying my books, I’ll keep writing.
Until next time,
About the Author
When TJ Klune was eight, he picked up a pen and paper and began to write his first story (which turned out to be his own sweeping epic version of the video game Super Metroid—he didn’t think the game ended very well and wanted to offer his own take on it. He never heard back from the video game company, much to his chagrin). Now, over two decades later, the cast of characters in his head have only gotten louder. But that’s okay, because he’s recently become a full-time writer, and can give them the time they deserve.
Since being published, TJ has won the Lambda Literary Award for Best Gay Romance, fought off three lions that threatened to attack him and his village, and was chosen by Amazon as having written one of the best GLBT books of 2011.
And one of those things isn’t true.
(It’s the lion thing. The lion thing isn’t true.)
Facebook: TJ Klune
Withered + Sere Blog Tour:
April 12 – MM Good Book Reviews
April 13- My Fiction Nook
April 18 – Just Love Romance
April 19 – Divine Magazine
April 19 – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
April 19 – The Novel Approach
April 20 – Kimi-chan Experience
April 21 – It’s About the Book
April 21 – Love Bytes
April 22 – Prism Book Alliance
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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