Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Book Giveaway and Author Interview: Discordia by Morgana Gallaway

Discordia by Morgana Gallaway
In near future Las Vegas, Beatrice D’Angelo, a descendant of famed poet Dante Alighieri, receives a mysterious voice recording on her thirteenth birthday. What she hears is a story with incredible implications . . .
Several thousand years ago, a routine temptation goes awry and Mona—a young Hopi woman—saves the life of a snake who happens to be the adored pet of the demon Astaroth. Their encounter sparks a crisis for Astaroth, who breaks a cardinal rule of Hell and must prove to his fellow demons that he still has what it takes to be part of Hell’s inner circle.
Astaroth is tasked with tempting Mona’s soul into damnation across three of her lifetimes on the Purgatory (Earth), but in order to save his job and her soul, the two embark on a tour of Hell that will change them both forever.
In this bold re-imagining of Dante’s Divine Comedy, where our own Earth is the Purgatory and the Seven Deadly Sins are the temptations of a lifetime, a most unlikely friendship will shake the foundations of good and evil.
About Morgana, from her site 
Morgana Bridget Gallaway was born on a full moon in March, 1983. She grew up in Portland, Oregon, and learned to love books, bake cookies, and shoot guns. Woefully unpopular in high school, she overcame her dislike of social events to study at (and graduate from) the University of St Andrews in Scotland, where attendance at charity balls was just as important as lectures and exams.
Armed with a double degree in geography and international relations, she set forth to find a traditional job, only to discover that no one was interested in her knowledge of world capitals or her skill at navigating cocktail parties. It was then that she decided, on a suggestion from her mother, that she would write novels.
Inspired by her previous travels through the Middle East and Africa (and motivated by the idea of living on a few dollars a day) she moved to India and wrote her first novel, The Nightingale. Braving monsoons, over-friendly shopkeepers, intestinal disease, snow leopards, and immigration police, she persevered and emerged twenty pounds lighter, with a manuscript in hand.
Ever since, she has had the good fortune of being published and living in England, Texas, and Arizona. She is already hard at work on her next project.
--The Twitter version: tell us about your book in 140 characters or less.
It’s a re-mix of Dante’s Inferno when dissatisfied demon Astaroth falls in (sort of) love with Mona, the human soul he’s supposed to tempt.

--How did you get the idea for the story?
I had a really vivid dream about this gold-skinned demon stalking a human girl through Hyde Park, London, during the Victorian era. (My dreams always include fashion.) The demon was depressed that they couldn’t be together and he couldn’t offer her anything. The entire Inferno Trilogy began as an effort to tell the backstory of that poignant scene, but now it’s turned into a real epic.

--Which character would you most/least like to have dinner with?
I would love to have dinner with Astaroth. If you can get past the irredeemable evil part, he’s very entertaining.
I would least like to have dinner with the demon Gressil, because his body odor would really kill my appetite.

--What are some of your favorite books? Do you still have much time to read?
I try not to read anything while I’m writing—I’m too afraid another writer’s amazing story will taint my style! But when I’m in editing mode, I catch up on my giant stack of to-read books. I’m a huge fan of J.K. Rowling, Stephen King, and Jane Austen. One of my favorite things to do is get immersed in classic sci-fi series written long ago, like Isaac Asimov’s Foundation books or the Dune books by Frank Herbert.
--Do you have any other works in progress? Any teasers or release dates?
Currently I’m working on Mortal Coil, the second book of the Inferno Trilogy. I’m aiming to have it finished by early summer 2012. Here’s a little teaser:
By near-unanimous consent amongst demons, the most problematic gate of Hell was the one in London. It was uncomfortably close to several churches, and too many of the nearby streets were named after holy things, like Worship Street, Gracechurch Street, and a particularly offensive Bartholomew Lane.
Then again, there was Houndsditch, Crutched Friars, and my personal favorite, Wormwood Street.
One might even say that the geography of London was a battle between good and evil.”

--If a fairy godmother told you your life could be like a favorite book for 24 hours, which book would you pick and why?
That’s tough, because if I were immersed in the world of, say, Harry Potter (with magical abilities, of course!) it would be awful to have to leave it again after just 24 hours. I guess I would pick up a Time Turner and extend that day as long as possible.

--Do you need anything to write (music, coffee, etc)? Are there any songs on your playlist- songs that inspired you or that were playing while you wrote?
Absolutely. I make up playlists for every book I write, based on the feel and emotion of the story. For Discordia, the list includes a lot of dark stuff like Massive Attack, IAmX, Apocalyptica, Dead Can Dance … and even some Sting!
I also need good supplies of tea (and occasionally an energy drink).

--If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
I’d like to be able to shape-shift. It would be cool to experience life in a different form.

--Besides writing, what do you like to do in your free time?
I’m a bit of a computer game nerd (Civilization! Warcraft!) and I also love to cook. Whenever I feel tense or anxious, I go into the kitchen and make up some new recipe. It usually turns out pretty well, especially if I’m baking cookies.

--Is there anything else you want to add or say to your readers?
I’d like to thank my readers for reading! As an author, my favorite moments are hearing how one of my stories affected someone else—their worldview, their knowledge, or even brightening up an otherwise dull day.
Lightning round: this or that?
Vanilla or chocolate? Vanilla
Edward or Jacob? Edward
Hockey or soccer? Soccer
Ebook or paper? Paper
Salty or sweet? Salty
Beach or mountains? Mountains
Phone call or email? Email
Early bird or night owl? Night owl
Dog or cat? Dog
Messy or neat? Neat
Ninjas or pirates? Pirates

And now for the Giveaway:
-One print copy, US only

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I’m a writer, book lover, and your newest blog follower! My blog is Life of Lois Feel free to stop on by.


  2. Awesome interview, and I love Morgana's bio! I'm a fan of Dante's works (even got to visit his home in Italy), so I definitely give brownie points for anyone who can work him in to modern literature. Might just have to go check this one out. Thanks for the rec and the giveaway op!



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