Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Hi Guys! Welcome to the tour for The Salamander Stone, and awesome YA fantasy novel that I get to share with you today!

The Salamander Stone
Published: 4.1.12 by Burst
Pages: 353
Amber discovers a conspiracy so earth-shattering it threatens the  whole of the human race. Forced to go on the run, it seems that she has enemies in every corner - some for her power, others see her as their savior - others still Seek her out of twisted love or simple lust. At the center of everything, the Salamander Stone Attracts more than earthly evil. A demon is after Amber as well, and his desires are unthinkable.

As a part of this fabulous tour I get to share a very fun guest post with you! This is one of the writing times that C.J. has. Read on!

Guest Post: Write What You Know 
- The Great God Elephant
“Always write about what you know.” Everyone agrees this is the number 1 tip if you want to be a writer. But what exactly do you know? Try this. Sit in front of a blank screen with pen poised. Close your eyes and think of a memorable event in your life. Visualise it. Colour it in (virtually). Hear the voices again. Breathe the smells. Feel the heat/cold on your skin. Now open your eyes and write. Just do it. No one’s going to see it but you. Open the floodgates and let it pour. And relax; you can tinker with it later.

I did this; I sat in front of a blank screen and thought about my childhood in Africa, which is one of the main locations in The Salamander Stone. It was a magical childhood. Here’s one true story from those days that poured onto the page.

The Great God Elephant
I stopped at the bend in the dust road, stooped down and slipped on my shoes. If I got in sight of the school with bare feet, and was spotted by a Nun, the wrath of God would descend. And worse, I’d lose my position as Head Girl. Suitably shod I tidied myself up, tucking in here, straightening there, and continued round the bend. And there it was, the low red corrugated-iron roofs of the Holy Cross Convent, Livingstone, Zambia. The best school in Livingstone, so we’d been told after my dad brought the family there from England. But to me it was a torture house.

Imagine sitting in regimented rows, back straight, chin up, not allowed to glance left or right without permission. That’s how our lessons were: a tedious series of learning-by- rote, broken only by the surreptitious snivelling of some badly bullied girl. I once – quite courageously – flicked my eyes to see my best friend Liz bowed over her book, huge tears dropping in globules on the page. Sister Louis-Michael had harangued her again, viciously, as only a Nun knew how. I found out, years later, that Sister Louis-Michael had a brain tumour. She was in great pain all the time she was teaching. But she sure did manage to spread that pain among her charges.

It was with thoughts of Sister Louis-Michael that I approached school that morning. I’d failed to learn last night’s set of history facts, preferring to laze about reading instead. Oh boy, was I going to suffer! But something was different that morning; I could see it as I got closer. It was as if the top of an ant hill had been removed and all the ants were running about in frenzied circles. The school had emptied and people were everywhere. What was going on?

And then I saw it. The school fence was down; the school gardens – the Nuns’ pride and joy – were trampled into a muddy mire. Fruit trees were broken and one of the outbuildings was leaning, as though a great weight had snuggled up to it in the night.

For one delicious moment I thought the wrath of God had truly descended, and this time aimed at the correct target. I even looked for the lightning bolt. Then I knew it was much better. Great piles of ordure told their own story, some still steaming, while the milling crowd carefully circled them in delicate shoes, noses averted. Only one animal on the planet marks its passing in that meaningful way: a herd of elephant had trampled through the school grounds in the night wreaking their own brand of havoc.

A herd of elephant! That delectable thought rolled around my mind, just as the elephants must have strolled around the grounds. And an even better thought followed: no school today. No test. No telling off. Nothing to do, and a whole glorious day to do it in. I kept the yipeeeeee strictly under wraps and rearranged my face into suitable misery, before joining the crowd in their incessant circling and pointing at piles of poo. And I inwardly thanked the great god elephant who had proved himself a worthy opponent of the bullies and the bigots.

Not long after, I pretended to step in the poo so I could take off my shoes and wiggle my bare toes in hot sand. I was heady with a feeling of freedom and rebellion. And who wouldn’t rebel when you have a herd of elephant leading the way?

Totally interesting right? Here's another cool tidbit for you. Check out this excerpt from the book, Salamander Stone!

Amber scrambled to her feet to face Meshak, but what she saw made her suddenly afraid. She backed away, expecting a blow. But he didn’t even need to raise his fists. His eyes caught hers and the blow struck anyway.


He didn’t speak but grabbed her wrist, pulling her towards the motor bike.

“Meshak,” she cried desperately, “Don’t!”

It was no use. Meshak was like some huge engine running through a program of its own. He wasn’t listening. He wasn’t seeing. He was not Meshak. He pushed her onto the bike and into the handcuffs clipped to the handlebars. Then he sat behind her, leaning over with his great weight and pressing her head into the tank until she was spread-eagled on it. He gunned the engine and the great beast roared.

She closed her eyes; it had all gone wrong. She shouldn’t have cried out for Khiza. If only she’d kept her temper, if only she’d thought before accusing him. She’d hurt him and now the evil had surfaced and it was all her fault. But where was he taking her? She thought she knew, though when the engine eventually slowed, it wasn’t the grounds of Charnwood she saw in the headlight. Amber could hardly believe it: they were back in Aberford.

A minute later she knew which house he was heading for. The iron gates stood open and they turned into the driveway. Meshak steered the bike around the back where a door stood ajar throwing out a blaze of light as if waiting for them. He cut the engine.

“Meshak,” she tried again as silence descended, “What are you going to do with me?”

But he wouldn’t speak. He unlocked the handcuffs from the bike and started to pull her inside the house.

“Meshak!” Amber was frantic. She sank to the ground and resisted him with all her strength. “Meshak, you promised. You promised you would never hurt me!”

He stopped and looked down at her with his blank stare. “Yes,” he said gruffly, “I promised, and I never break a promise.” He began walking again, dragging her behind him easily. “But I never promised that no one else would hurt you, did I, Amber?”

Whoa. That's a bit intense! I'm pretty intrigued! What about you? The last little goodie I have for your today is a GIVEAWAY. As part of this tour, you could enter to win...*drumroll*.... a $25 gift card! Sweet right?

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Thanks for stopping by the tour! Don't miss the other stops, which can be found HERE.


  1. Thanks for sharing the excerpt. The book sounds really interesting. Thanks for the giveaway

  2. Sounds pretty good! Thanks for the giveaway!


Heyo! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! I love to hear from my awesome-sauce blog readers. You just made my day! I try to reply to every comment I get so if you have a question check back later! Or just link me up to your blog (if you have one) and I'll visit you! Have a Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious day! <333 Inky

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