Thursday, September 24, 2015

**GIVEAWAY** Interview with Donna Augustine + Review of her new novel The Wilds

I'm so happy to welcome back an author whose become a friend and my new fantasy go to.
She and I are chatting about her debut novel in her new Urban Fantasy series, The Wilds. Enjoy our chat and my review and then stick around because Donna is offering one autographed print copy for a giveaway.

Publisher: Strong Hold Publishing
Release Date: 08/30/2015
Length: 350pp
Buy It: B&N/Amazon


I met a Plaguer today, one of the very few who survived the last outbreak of Bloody Death. She said horrible things about me and my companions. We all called her crazy afterward and claimed this was the reason they needed to be locked up. They spread lies that could hurt our fragile world, nearly brought to extinction 150 years ago.
But here's the catch: she was right about me. I have a niggling fear that she was right about my friends, as well. What if the Plaguers are right about the people in charge? What if they are right about everything?
This book is for all the Plaguers, the truth sayers branded and marked as liars, often hunted and sometimes forgotten. This book is for the girl who was right.

The Giveaway is for one
Autographed Print copy of
The Wilds US ONLY
Thanks Donna!
Good Luck!

Please welcome back to the blog an author who’s become an instant favorite of mine, Donna Augustine.
Donna, tell us a bit about your first in the new series, The Wilds.
Thanks for having me back!
The Wilds revolves around Dahlia. She’s a Plaguer, one of the few who survived a virus that wiped out a large portion of the human race. There’s a strong prejudice against Plaguers because people have a hard time believing that they don’t still carry the virus. Plaguers also have visions, which unnerve most people. Because of this, she’s been locked away from the rest of the world for the majority of her life. Finally she manages to escape with the aid of Dax, who brings her into the Wilds, the vast majority of North America that is ungoverned and completely wild at this point.

Readers will find themselves in a barely recognizable post apocalyptic world.
Do you know all about your worlds from the get go or do they progress with the stories?
I had a pretty firm idea of what this world was before I started, probably the clearest vision I’ve ever had. I was dreaming of this world and making notes while I was still finishing up the Karma Series so it was pretty well developed before I ever started writing.

How many books are planned in the series?
I keep saying three of four. Four is probably a safer bet but this one could go longer. There’s a lot of story to tell and when I look through my notes and plot points I wonder how I’ll even fit everything into four.

Do you already know how it all ends?
Yes. I always know the end of what a series is going to be before I start but there’s always grey areas in the middle. I know the destination but not the exact route.

The Wilds are most of what is left of the US, with the exception of a few “countries” one of which is Newco.
Is Newco, the country that Dahlia is from, a remnant of before or was it created after the plague?
That’s a good question and probably something I should’ve included within the story! Newco was formed after the plague struck. In my mind, it was a nickname for the New England Coast.

Will we be visiting more “countries” in future books in the series?
The way it’s currently laid out, yes. But things could change! The end is set but sometimes a better way to tell a portion of the story might pop in my head.

Your characters have a pulp-fiction/comic-book superhero called Moobie whom they emulate.
How did he come to be a part of this series?
Wow, another really great question! When I thought about the role models that Dal would have, there weren’t really any good ones. What if you had no one to look up to as you were growing up? What would fill that hole? I remember being a kid and watching Wonder Woman. I’d spin in a circle as fast as I could and then pretend to save people. What if you grew up having only this one character to look up to and no one else? How much more powerful would that influence would be?

Is he based on anyone in particular?
He’s sort of like a dystopian James Bond.

This has a mix of YA/NA and Adult fantasy.
What genre are you calling it?
This is such a mishmash of genres I’m not sure what to call it myself. To make it harder, it’s going to evolve as it goes. I’d say by time it’s done, it will be firmly rooted in adult dark fantasy. As for what it is now, I’d say you labeled very accurately as a YA/NA and adult fantasy.

Donna can you tell us a little about book two and when (I’ll be anxiously awaiting it) it will be available?
It’s going to be released in January.
As far as what’s in it, I don’t like to get too spoilery but Dal’s character is going to have a lot of growth. You’ll also get to find out more about the Dark Walkers and there’s going to be some explanations on Tiffy and her friends.

Thanks so much for talking to us about the new novel.
Good luck!
Thanks for having me! This was a great interview!

My Review
Donna Augustine’s dark, in the not too distant post apocalyptic future debut to her new series is a fantastic fast paced urban fantasy/thriller with a bit of a coming of age/loss of innocence storyline added for good measure. Her excellent world building sets the perfect stage for not only this installment but for future books as well. Her dialogue is the ideal match for the tenaciousness of her amazing ever evolving, well-developed stars and sensational co-stars, and her timely, quick shots of humor helps defuse the intenseness of the nail biting read. Donna thanks for this extreme rollercoaster ride, can’t wait for the next one!

One Hundred and Fifty years ago 95% of the population was annihilated by a devastating plague called The Bloody Death. After the initial outbreak, the disease would reemerge every decade or so and wipeout more of an already dwindling population leaving a world in ruins. After a while there were rumors that a tiny number of those inflicted survived only to suffer from psychotic delusions. But the survivors (Plaguers) knew the darkness they saw in those they called Dark Walkers was the truth.
At the age of four one such survivor, Dahlia Franks was left at an asylum for the criminally insane by her parents. Now at eighteen she just wants to survive until she finds a way to free herself and those inmates she considers friends from the Dark Walker fiends at the facility. Then one-day her savior comes in the guise of a government inspector and suddenly she’s free for the first time in fourteen years. She knows he’s hiding something, but freedom is worth any secrets he’s keeping, even though she can’t help wondering what he ultimately wants and can she afford to give it?

Connect with Donna - Website - Facebook - Twitter

Donna Augustine’s lifelong ambition was to become the crazy cat lady. Unfortunately, when family allergies cut short her dream of living in a house full of furries, she turned her ambitions toward writing. Combining her love of fantasy, scifi, horror and romance, she tries to string together interesting twists on urban fantasy.
A native of New Jersey, when she isn’t writing or over dosing on caffeine, she can occasionally be spotted in disguise at the local dog park.

Today's Gonreading item is:
a collection of Alice in Wonderland
themed gifts because this novel will
make you feel like you've fallen down
the Rabbit Hole. Click HERE for the buy page

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This sounds really good. I love dystopians and the idea of Plaguers. Thank you for sharing and as always fantastic interview. You have me excited.

  2. This is one of those authors who's books I own but have yet to try. I need to change that because they all sound fantastic!

    1. Yeah Ali, now you just need more hours in the day right!

  3. This novel would be captivating and intriguing. I haven't read a book by Donna but would enjoy this story greatly. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  4. A fictional character as a role model for another fictional character, that's a great addition/quirk! Good catch, D!

  5. Oh wow at the world building and set up. I don't think I would do well in that world lol Sounds like a great read (totally having a giggle over the cover though)

    1. I know but the cover really relates well with the story.
      Happy Friday Anna!

    2. that's good at least :D I'll never forget the other cover with it though. heh

    3. Oh Wow, I didn't see another cover, did we discuss it on the group? Maybe while I was on vacation

  6. I have not yet had the pleasure of reading her. I stress, yet! Thank you for the fun interview, it makes me want all 4 books NOW! lol Also, thank you for the giveaway, and a chance to win this awesome sounding book! =)

    1. Hi Tiana, thanks for stopping by and commenting. Good Luck!

  7. I most certainly have read Donna Augustine's writing. She is amazing! I know I will love anything with her name on it; I preorder all her books. The Wilds did not disappoint!! Looking forward to more Dal & Dax. :)

    1. Hey thanks for the comment dawn, I know I can't wait for more too!