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Blog Tour: Kingdom of Embers Author Interview & Giveaway!

Today it's my pleasure to introduce Tricia Copeland, author of Kingdom of Embers, the first in a fun YA fantasy series. Read on for an audio excerpt of the book, an interview with the author, a peek behind the scenes of audiobook creation with the narrator Amy Deuchler, and the chance to win a 3 month Audible subscription!

There's no review from me for this one, I'm afraid, but it'll be added to my wishlist! Check out some of the other tour stops listed at the bottom of the post for more exclusive features and full reviews.


Audiobook cover for Kingdom of Embrs by Tricia Copeland.

Author: Tricia Copeland.
Narrator: Amy Deuchler.
Length: 8 hours 18 minutes.
Publisher: True Bird Publishing LLC 2020.
Genre: Fantasy; YA.
Series: Kingdom Journals, Book 1.
Release date: February 1, 2017.

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Her pale skin and weird diet make her a target at school. If only they knew the truth about her feeding habits…

Seventeen-year-old Alena Scott is tired of pretending to be something she’s not. As an outlawed vampire-witch hybrid, she’s forced to abide by the oppressive secrecy imposed by her Vampire Chancellor mother. But she’ll have to ignore the rules when she comes face-to-face with a handsome, full-grown version of her childhood imaginary friend.

Shocked that he recognizes her as his own pretend play pal, the two embark on a quest to solve the mystery of their fantasized companionship. And as they unravel their entwined destinies, Alena realizes she holds the key to a curse which could free them all—or condemn witchkind to eternal suffering.

Can Alena and her impossibly familiar partner reverse an ancient spell before they’re sent to a mortal grave?

Kingdom of Embers is the first book in the enthralling Kingdom Journals YA urban fantasy series. If you like intriguing characters, shadowy magic, and a fresh twist on modern vampire storylines, then you’ll love Tricia Copeland’s heart-stopping tale.

Buy Kingdom of Embers to embrace a prophetic fate today!

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Tricia Copeland grew up in a hot, sticky, rural south Georgia town where pine trees and alligators ruled the landscape. Since then she’s moved west to the purple mountain majesties of Colorado. Her books span from the dystopian, paranormal, and fantasy, to coming-of-age and new adult romance genres. You can find more about her and all her books at www.triciacopeland.com.


Hi Tricia! Can you tell us about the process of turning your book into an audiobook?

TC: I searched for two years to find the right narrator for this story. Frustrated, I’d almost given up. Last fall at a book con, Amy stopped by my table and introduced herself. I spoke with her for a few minutes and afterwards looked up her work. I loved what I heard and contacted her immediately to talk about starting the narration. After the gave her the manuscript and character list, she sent me a six minute clip. I was hooked! I wanted more! I loved listening to my words come to live [sic]. I also thrive on learning new things, so while daunting, I feel so empowered by all I’m learning about the audiobook industry.

Was a possible audiobook recording something you were conscious of while writing? 

TC: In the future I think I will be more conscious of names and pronunciations. I will be more clear on how a name is pronounced to ensure ease of transition between ebook or paper copies and the audio versions.

How closely did you work with your narrator before and during the recording process? Did you give them any pronunciation tips or special insight into the characters? 

TC: My narrator read the manuscript and gave me a list of questions. I also provided her with a character bio sheet with a bit of history as to age, ethnicity, gender, etc. of my characters.

Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?

TC: I love that I can listen to an audiobook almost anywhere. Listening to books and podcasts helps me get through mundane chores like laundry and cleaning, dishes and cooking.

What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as “cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”?

TC: I don’t feel like audiobooks are cheating at all. I love the technology because I can listen in the car, on a run, or while doing chores.

Writing a novel can be a lengthy and exhausting process. How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for writing?

TC: Interacting with readers and authors keeps me excited and motivated. I love chatting about books, characters, plot, and hearing feedback and future ideas for my work.

In your opinion, what are the pros and cons of writing a stand-alone novel vs. writing a series? 

TC: I love both stand alones and series. I try to wrap up each of my series books so it can act as a stand alone as well as add a little bit of an OMG, what’s next! If I fall in love with characters and a storyline it’s hard to let them go. I’m always sad when I finish writing a book because I miss my characters.

Quiz time! What's your favorite:

Food - pizza.

Song - there are so many, anything with a good beat and inspiring lyrics keeps me grooving.

Book - Twilight, Cassandra Clare, Kristin & P.C. Cast, The Crystal Cave, Gone with the Wind, I love paranormal fantasy, light sci-fi, and dystopian, and when I’m feeling tired a good sweet romance.

Television show - The Vampire Diaries, Reign, The Originals, iZombie.

Movie - I love rom coms; The Holiday, Love Actually, Twilight movies.

Band - Bastille, The Fray, Imagine Dragons, Twenty-One Pilots.

Sports team - not a huge sports fan but always go back to my roots, GT Jackets.

City - Wow! Hard one - I loved NYC when I visited with friends and plan on visiting New Orleans this year, love Savannah, and Denver.

Are any of those things referenced in your work? 

TC: I make playlists for all my books! The Kingdom of Embers playlist top pick is Fire Escape by Andrew McMahon which can be found here.

What’s next for you?

TC: My narrator is starting the second book of the Kingdom Journals series and that audiobook will release this summer. I have a short story follow up to the Kingdom of Embers journals that will release later this year (fingers crossed). I’m also working on release materials of the second in a dystopian series for this spring. I haven’t decided whether to pursue writing another romance or another full-length extension of the Kingdom Journals yet. Both are swirling around in my head so we’ll see which one rises to the top.

Thanks for answering our questons, Tricia! Good luck with your upcoming projects!


Photo of Amy Deuchler smiling and speaking into a microphone.
Amy Deuchler is a Chicago-based voice artist and actor specializing in audiobook narration, e-learning, and radio or TV commercials. Amy is professionally trained in commercial and narration voiceover and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Marquette University and a Master's degree in Library and Information Science from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. In her spare time, Amy also enjoys reading, painting, designing lights and scenery for theatre, and biking. She lives with her boyfriend and their three cats just north of Chicago.


Hi Amy! When did you know you wanted to be an audiobook narrator? 

AD: I was listening to more and more audiobooks and I just kept getting the urge to do it.

How did you wind up narrating audiobooks? Was it always your goal or was it something you stumbled into by chance?

AD: I just researched until I found ACX, and on their website it talked about what you needed, how to do it and I just went for it. 

A lot of narrators seem to have a background in theatre. Is that something you think is essential to a successful narration career? 

AD: I don’t know if it’s essential, I have a very limited background from when I was in school. I love theater. However now I do find training very important. Getting an instructor for the type of narration you want to perform, attend seminars and classes in both performance and audio technology – you should really know how to use the equipment you are utilizing and some ‘employers’ will only accept your work if you are using certain technology.

What did your training involve?

AD: I am seeing a coach for non-fiction (Sean Pratt - @SPPresents) and another for fiction (Andi Arndt - @andi_arndt). Between the two a variety of topics in narration and the business of narration are covered. I see improvement every time I have a session, which is really encouraging, I am lucky that although I may not have years of professional acting or collegiate acting training I am able to utilize my coaches to help me improve and to learn more about what it is that I do.

We often hear that it takes 6x as long to record an audiobook as the finished product is to listen to. What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for narrating during such long projects? 

AD: For me it is a combination of things. Because of the performance aspect, if I am not feeling it, I try not to push through. I will walk away and do some of the many other things I am responsible for in real life. My hours are really flexible because I work out of a home studio, so sometimes it is just as simple as hanging out with the family. Other times, I find that listening to others narrate in the genre’s I work in really helps. Especially when they are good they will motivate me to want to get back in the booth.

What are your favourite and least favourite parts of narrating an audiobook? 

AD: My favorite is recording, getting to immerse myself into another world. I also love the read through of the book; it really gets me excited and helps me to plan out where I am going to go. I guess editing is my least favorite part, but only in comparison to the other parts, I love to do it, just not as much as performing or reading.

What about Kingdom of Embers compelled you to audition as narrator?

AD: It is exactly the story I would read as a consumer, and if it has my attention in that way then I want to audition because I know I will have fun with it while recording.

How closely do you prefer to work with authors? 

AD: I love having input from the authors, although every relationship is not the same. I do prefer it when even if they are not the ones who hire me, they have made the decision to have me be the voice of their book.

Who is your “dream author” that you would like to record for?

AD: Dream author – I think CD Reiss, I love her work!

If you could narrate one book from your youth what would it be and why?

AD: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – that book spoke to me in my soul on so many different levels I can’t even fully describe!

What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as “cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”? 

AD: Maybe to them, but as a mother of five kids, I know everyone does not learn the same way, receive things the same way and we are very lucky to live in a time that we have audiobooks as a way for people to enjoy books.

What are you working on next? 

AD: Project wise I am getting ready to dive into Stepping Stone, book 2 of The Stone Series, Asher Black by Parker S. Huntington, Stryker by Tess Oliver, Fighting Dirty by Sidney Halston, and Dark Love Part 2 by JB Duvane. 

Thank you for your insights into the audiobook world, Amy! I'm sure we'll be hearing more of you soon!


Kingdom of Embers Giveaway: 3-month Audible Membership


For more exclusive content, reviews, dreamcasts, and playlists, check out some of the other stops on the Kingdom of Embers audiobook tour.
With thanks to Audiobookworm Promotions for organising this tour.

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