CLOAK GAMES: TOMB HOWL now available!

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Nadia Moran saved the world and tens of millions of lives.

All it cost was her sanity.

But sane or not, Lord Morvilind has work for her to do. This time, he wants her to work with the brutal and murderous Rebels.

And unless Nadia is clever, the Rebels will start their revolution with her death…

-JM

15 thoughts on “CLOAK GAMES: TOMB HOWL now available!

  1. Fantastic – everything about it!

    Is she the most powerful human wizard ever now?

    P.S. Your proofreading was very good again. I only noticed 3 typos so I won’t bother with a proofreading pass. I actually do enjoy the book more with this lower level of typos.

    More Nadia! More Nadia! More Nadia! …

    1. Thanks! Glad you liked it.

      Nadia wouldn’t be the most powerful human wizard ever, but she’d definitely be in the top fifty.

      Gonna do GHOST IN THE RING before CLOAK GAMES: HAMMER BREAK.

      1. OK. I’ll never complain about you writing more Ghosts books, but Nadia has slightly edged out Caina as being my favorite series of yours at the moment.

        And perhaps I’m slightly worried. Ghosts Exile was soooo good and ended soooo strongly, that I’m having trouble imagining how you’re possibly gonna match the quality and excitement of those books. But, hey, you’re the one with the imagination, so I’ll just sit back and wait patiently for whatever you write. 🙂

        1. Let’s see – here are five previews of what GHOST NIGHT will be about:

          1.) Caina’s mother’s family. Caina’s mother was actually the youngest daughter of a family that’s like a cross between a sorcerous Mafia and the Death Eaters.

          2.) What does Caina do now? Hard to be a spy when you’re famous.

          3.) A ring, a dagger, a sword, an amulet, and a crown.

          4.) The Umbarian Order.

          5.) Sometimes history is like looking at an old, dusty skeleton. You look at it and think it’s dead, but then you poke at it and the skeleton sits up and reaches for your throat, and you realize that history isn’t quite as dead as you think. Some characters in GHOST NIGHT will learn that the hard way. 🙂

  2. Poor Nadia. I hope she finds some degree of balance. Mind you I’m not certain how sane I would be if put in the same place she was. Gah….. Some of the secondary effects… just nasty.

    1. She’s had a rough couple of books!

      Someone observed to me that if someone asked Nadia “what do you want?” she wouldn’t be able to answer the question. (Not counting curing Russell.) In the next few books, she’s going to have to figure out the answer to that question.

  3. I finished reading Tomb Howl and enjoyed it specially Nadia’s character growth. Nadia payed a damned high price for her power. No easy route for her unlike the wizards who borrow their power from the Dark ones. It was horrifying but not surprising that the elves decided to re-purpose eternity crucibles from torture chambers to training chambers. Frankly, I am surprised she isn’t completely wrecked and can still maintain a facade of normal behaviour.

    I like your Cloak Games series a lot – you haven’t introduced completely silly plot devices yet, unlike the Frostborn series and Nadia even being a wizard is strangely a more relatable human protagonist compared to your other characters.

    I have issues with the slightly risque cover art that does not show the protagonists face – I sincerely believe it is reducing your sales. This series should have been more popular. Also, elves and other creatures being immune to bullets makes absolutely no sense to me even from a fantasy perspective. Kinetic energy is mass * velocity squared and the energy has to go *somewhere* when a bullet hits a body. Maybe the elves are resistant to bullets but they certainly can’t be immune by default to hypervelocity bullets. (without some sort of shield, etc).

    1. Thanks! I’m glad you liked it.

      “Nadia even being a wizard is strangely a more relatable human protagonist compared to your other characters.”

      When I plotted out this series, I envisioned the protagonist’s plot arc as a villain who very unwillingly and gradually became a hero. Now that I’ve actually written a lot of it, Nadia’s character arc is more like Catwoman gradually turning into Gandalf.

      “This series should have been more popular.”

      Ah, well. The race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, but time and chance overtake them all.

      “Also, elves and other creatures being immune to bullets makes absolutely no sense to me even from a fantasy perspective.”

      I used to have a more detailed explanation, but I gave up and just say that Elves can only be hit by a +1 magic weapon or higher.

  4. I think the comparisons between Nadia and Caina are what make this series for me, those are my two favorite series you have and the fact that Nadia is a wizard while Caina has issues with all magic, Caina detests magical power while Nadia seeks it, and Caina has no family and fights because of it, while family is all that makes Nadia human.

    Also the fact there are no good guys in this series. That’s a weird thing to like but there you are. Your hero is a thief, her love interest is an assassin, her teacher is a sociopath, her queen is a tyrant and the freedom fighters are psychopathic marxists. That’s a difficult world to write. 🙂

    1. Matthew wrote: “…there are no good guys in this series.”

      I get the feeling that Jonathan (and certainly Nadia) would agree with you, but I strongly disagree. I believe that the fundamental moral of the universe, er, well, at for mammals on earth, is “take care of your own.” Nadia does that (Russell, Reardon, etc.), and in my book, that makes her a very good person. The only time Nadia every screws someone over is in pursuit of taking care of her own.

      1. Nadia’s moral evolution has been fun to write as well. By #7, she’s realized that she’s using Russell as sort of her Universal Morality License, and she’s worried about just how far she’s willing to go.

    2. “I think the comparisons between Nadia and Caina are what make this series for me, those are my two favorite series you have and the fact that Nadia is a wizard while Caina has issues with all magic, Caina detests magical power while Nadia seeks it, and Caina has no family and fights because of it, while family is all that makes Nadia human.”

      Nadia is like the anti-Caina! Or maybe Caina’s the anti-Nadia. 🙂

      “That’s a difficult world to write.”

      It is! 🙂 The tricky part is that the Elves aren’t all cartoon villains, and I don’t write CLOAK GAMES as a dystopia. In the spectrum of governments humanity has had throughout its history, the Elves are both better than some and worse than some. I think CS Lewis said it would be better to live under robber barons than omnipotent moral busybodies. The Elves are the occasionally neglectful robber barons, while the Rebels want to be omnipotent moral busybodies with death camps.

  5. Hmmmm maybe “good” is too generic. How about virtuous? Everyone who has power has a degree of ruthlessness to go with it that I think makes the world 3-D. But as JM said the bad guys aren’t cartoon villains. The closest has been dear old Rogomil, complete with mustache twirling monologues. And since he got one-linered before he died, that was appropriate.

    What’s nice is I don’t feel hopeless reading Nadia’s world (looking at you Song of Ice and Fire). Even after everything that’s happened to her, even being mostly crazy, Nadia still has people who love and support her. If he was nothing more than a sheep, James would have turned her over to Homeland. Russell and Riordan are both concerned for her, and Nadia hasn’t turned into an amoral lunatic like she basically has the excuse to.

    I AM looking forward to seeing who she finally breaks for, does she tell the Marneys? Russell? Does it start to shake their faith in the Elves? Will Morvilind help her keep from destroying herself or watch as she tries to fix it on her own? What will Tarlia do when she finds out the two scariest vassals she has decided they knew better than she did and made a human more powerful than she wanted? (Please don’t answer those here I will be sad).

    Also “omnipotent moral busybodies with death camps” needs to be the rebels motto. They could make T-shirts. Give out pamphlets. I’d laugh.

      1. Given that one of my series has armies of orcs engaged in battle over theological disputes, it seemed inevitable. 🙂

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