Thursday, September 06, 2012

The Broken Lands, The Kairos Mechanism and a Book Launch Party

OK, I have lots to write, so I will try to put things in order:

1. The Prequel to The Boneshaker:

The prequel of The Boneshaker is finally hitting the shelves this week!

Here is a summary of the story, which takes place 30 years earlier than the Boneshaker, from Clarion Books:

A crossroads can be a place of great power. So begins this deliciously spine-tingling prequel to Kate Milford’s The Boneshaker, set in the colorful world of nineteenth-century Coney Island and New York City. Few crossroads compare to the one being formed by the Brooklyn Bridge and the East River, and as the bridge’s construction progresses, forces of unimaginable evil seek to bend that power to their advantage. Only two orphans with unusual skills stand in their way. Can the teenagers Sam, a card sharp, and Jin, a fireworks expert, stop them before it’s too late? Here is a richly textured, slow-burning thriller about friendship, courage, and the age-old fight between good and evil.

This story grabbed me as much as the first book and held just tons of wonderful historical and magical detail for me to go crazy with! Here are a few of my illustrations for this book:
He pushed open the door to reveal a room full of glass
jars twinkling in the light of scores of lit candles
Then the devil paused, fished about in his
waistcoat pocket, and held out his hand.
The man who entered then was tall and thin and deadly-looking.
The trip downriver to Norton's Point 
He and Walker sat cross-legged on the ground on opposite sides
of an empty crate with a deck of cards between them.

2. The Novella

For those of you who cannot wait to learn more about Natalie, the hero of The Boneshaker, there is good news too. To tide fans over, Kate Milford has written a novella, the first in the "Arcana" series that will accompany the full length novels:

 "The Kairos Mechanism" continues the story of Natalie, gives clues as to what might happen next, and a bit of background history to some of the mysterious characters we already met in The Boneshaker. Kate funded the writing, illustrating and printing of the book through a Kickstarter campaign, and it will be available exclusively through her website and on Espresso Book Machines throughout the US. Here's an excerpt from the summary from Goodreads:

September, 1913. The crossroads town of Arcane, Missouri, is a place where strange things happen, and lately those strange things have a habit of happening to thirteen year-old Natalie Minks. It's Natalie who first encounters the two boys who arrive in town seemingly out of nowhere, carrying a dead man between them. Odder still, a few of her older neighbors immediately recognize the dead man as a fellow citizen who's been missing for fifty years--and who doesn't appear to have aged in all that time. When another newcomer, a peddler called Trigemine, arrives in town, Natalie learns why the two boys and the peddler have really come to Arcane. And, of course, she realizes she has to stop them. 

I was very excited when Kate Milford asked me if would create the cover image for the book. Since this book stands on its own yet is related to the full length novels I wanted to try something a bit different and decided to work with paper silhouette. Here are a few of the first paper cuts and sketches:

The finished cover looks like this:

Then wonderful author/designer/illustrator Lisa Amowitz took over and turned the image into the beautiful cover you already saw above:

Oh, and there's a back vignette too:

3. The Party

And now finally the information about the book launch party: Kate will be hosting a party today at McNally Jackson's Book Store in New York to celebrate the release of "The Broken Lands" and to present "The Kairos Mechanism". If you are in the area drop by and pick up your freshly printed copies of both books!

back cover vignette of "The Broken Lands"


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