on March 6th 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Rebellion, Survival, War, Young Adult
Format: eBook, Paperback
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After seven grueling years of captivity in the Garden—a burlesque troupe of slave girls—sixteen-year-old Rose finds an opportunity to escape during a performance for the emperor. But the hostage she randomly chose from the crowd to aid her isn’t one of the emperor’s men—not anymore. He’s the former heir to the throne, who is now leading a rebellion against it.
Rayce is a wanted man and dangerously charismatic, the worst person for Rose to get involved with, no matter what his smile promises. But he assumes Rose’s attempt to take him hostage is part of a plot to crush the rebellion, so he takes her as his hostage. Now Rose must prove where her loyalties lie, and she offers Rayce a deal—if he helps her rescue the other girls, she’ll tell him all the Garden’s secrets.
Except the one secret she’s kept for seven years that she’ll take to her grave if she must.
Happy Book Birthday to Amber Mitchell and her debut YA fantasy novel, Garden of Thorns! From the first page to the last, Garden of Thorns pulls you in with its wonderful imagery and its strong relatable characters.
To celebrate her new release, I am so excited to share a guest post by Ms. Mitchell as she shares some advice from one of my favorite characters from her debut novel, Garden of Thorns, Rayce! Thank you, Amber! And at the end, be sure to check out the link to Amber Mitchell’s inspiration board on Rayce on Pinterest.
Rayce’s Tips for Joining the Rebellion
Delmar has become impossible to live in over the past 5 years. If the Zareeni rebellion hadn’t formed when it did, I doubt half of the towns surrounding Imperial City would have made it through the drought that has taken hold. That’s why we need able-bodied men and women to join our ranks and help us fight against the emperor and his antiquated beliefs that he only should decide what work you can do, who you can marry, what religion you’re allowed to practice, that the Blue Wall should keep us from our neighboring land of Varsha. For too long your coin has gone to feed his treasury and your dries have fallen on uncaring ears. Now is the time to fight for a Delmar we all deserve.
Since you’ve decided to join the Zareeni rebellion, here are a few tips you can follow in order to acclimate quickly:
- Know your allies– The people in your immediate squadron are the ones that will have your back in the thick of a fight. Know their names, their faces, their strengths and their weakness so that you can compensate. We are more than just soldiers in a war. We are people. The more you know about the men and women you are walking into a fight with, the greater your chances of survival.
- Question everything– Even question my orders if they don’t feel right. We didn’t start the rebellion to replace my uncle with another just like him. Notice your surroundings, trust your gut. If something seems out of place, don’t ever take that for granted. The emperor is smart and he’s betting we’re not. Let’s prove him wrong.
- Gear up– The only thing that has kept our rebellion afloat these past few months is the mineral Zarenite and our stunners. Thanks to our lead inventor, we now have the weaponry that allows us to stun our enemies but it only works when you inject the Zarenite underneath your skin. It reacts to your own heat and powers your stunner. The single most important thing you can do to equip yourself for the fight.
- Don’t leave a trail– Since our numbers are much fewer, secrecy is of the utmost importance. The Shulin Forest that surrounds us will do a good amount to cover our tracks back to the base but be diligent in keeping our base a secret. Most of our missions rely on the element of surprise. I n our base, it’s very rare to find uniforms. Common clothes allow us to stay hidden in plain sight.
- Remember to look for the light in the walls– Our base is like a labyrinth and it has been one of our biggest strengths. We chose this abandoned mine because of its confusing layout. Even if Sun soldiers find their way in here, they can’t survive the twist and turns in the rock and could end up wandering for hours. But if you ever find yourself lost, just touch the walls. With the Zarenite embedded in your skin and in the walls, it will always light your way back home.
- Anything worth doing is hard– War is bloody, it’s violent, it wears on the soul. But as my mentor, Oren, always says to me, anything worth doing is hard. It requires every ounce of energy you have. And what we’re doing is changing our world. So no matter how hopeless you feel, remember that every inch we fight to take is worth it. Every risk, every victory, means we are closer to building a world we can all be proud of.
In order to make a difference, we need to rise up and answer the call of the people. More than anything, that is what the Zareeni rebellion is trying to do. We have to give a voice back to the masses. You are not insects, you are the future. Thank you for joining us. Now let’s get out there and make a better world.