“Liz Delton is a wonderful steampunk author who infuses her novels with action, humor, whimsy, and charming characters set in a unique fantastical world.”
Elizabeth Chatsworth, Author of The Brass Queen
This was one of my absolute favorite books to write, and it’s definitely got one of my favorite cover designs! I’m already working on writing book #2, The Thief’s Amulet, and just started messing around with the new cover–because if I’m going to procrastinate writing, I might as well do it with another writing-related project, right?
“A fast paced tale of mystery, sisterhood, and tea.”
H.L. Burke, Fantasy Author
“If you enjoy steampunk or mystery adventure stories, then I recommend reading The Alchemyst’s Mirror. It was a mix of Indiana Jones and Sherlock Holmes, but with two sisters leading the story.”
The Plum Report
To keep on celebrating this book, I’m going to start releasing some of the recipes featured in the blog tour, but with more pictures! When I decided to include “tea shop recipes” in the blog tour, I test baked all of them. Today I’m going to share a really yummy one, Elliot Everturn’s Raspberry Crumble Bars.
The Recipe: Raspberry Crumble Bars
Flour- 1 Cup Oats- 1 Cup Baking Powder- 1 tsp Brown Sugar- 3/4 Cup Butter- 1/2 Cup (1 stick) Raspberries- 2 Cups (fresh or frozen) Lemon Juice- 2 tbsp White Sugar- 1/2 Cup Flour- 2 tbsp
Mix the flour, oats, baking powder, and brown sugar in a bowl.
Melt the butter, and stir it into the mixture until crumbly.
Pour two thirds of the mixture into an 8×8 pan (or pie dish)
In a small bowl, mix the raspberries with the lemon juice, white sugar, and flour.
Spread the raspberries evenly across the crumble in the pan.
Sprinkle the remaining crumble on top.
Bake at 350F for 35 minutes
Cool and cut into squares
Top with lemon glaze: Powdered sugar with a dash of lemon juice added until it reaches desired icing consistency.
I’m an immortal magician who only wants a peaceful life with his fiancée. My elemental nemesis was soundly beaten—so I thought—but now she’s back and plans to reign over all humans in the guise of a resurrected Aztec deity.
She will do anything to sway her followers.
Every day, more people are drawn to her earth-worshiping cult at the cost of their lives. Can I stop this self-proclaimed goddess before the entire city is under her dominion?
Release date: November 6, 2020 Sub-genre: YA Epic Fantasy Content rating: PG- 13
The end is here.
Satinka and her friends have finally made it to the Five Stars of the North. There is nothing left but to rescue Memnyir and face Sunne in a battle to the death. In this thrilling conclusion, the team confront Sunne and Āni in a fight they know could cost their lives. The Age of Mankind is tested, and the battle of gods and dragons commences. One way or another, the War of the North will be won, and the fate of the world decided.
Release date: November 6, 2020 Sub-genre: Urban Fantasy Content rating: PG-13
Following a narrow escape from the secret world of warring shapeshifters, Ellie St. James works at building a new life under an assumed identity—until Carter Ballis, head of security for mob boss and shifter leader Sean Costas reenters her life, bringing the perils of his job with him. This time, it’s not just Ellie’s life at stake, but Carter’s too, as Sean’s rivals close in on them both. Far outmatched, Ellie refuses to crumble when it comes to protecting those around her. However, when a partial translation of the magical Stones of Fire, coupled with a terrible misunderstanding, thrust Ellie into the gravest danger she’s faced yet, even the Talos himself may not be able to reach her in time…
Release date: November 10, 2020 Sub-genre: Urban Fantasy Content rating: PG
In the battle to save the world, things have taken a fatal turn.
The elite mages have succeeded in getting ahead of Kashmeru’s shadow army, but now the power has shifted, and the good guys have taken a hit. It’s up to Jae and the rest of the crew to outwit the Pishacha and take back what they’ve lost.
Loyalties are tested and resilience pushed to the limits, as the war continues between the divine and evil.
Release date: November 11, 2020 Sub-genre: Steampunk/Gaslamp Fantasy Content rating: PG
An invention gone wrong. A city buried in snow. And she only has ‘til Christmas to make it right.
Aurelia Sundon has an idea for a brilliant invention that will ensure her family’s financial future. But the elite inventor’s guild has imposed a ridiculous deadline for invention applications: Christmas Day. With only four days until the deadline, Aurelia thinks she can finish it in time.
Until her old love Frederick Grandville steps back into her life when he enters the competition with his own invention. Frederick could be the downfall of Aurelia’s career. Again. But when his invention goes out of control, the wondrous snow it brings down on the ever-sunny city of Soldark turns into an outright blizzard.
With a broken promise between them, she’s not so sure she wants to help him. But the clock is ticking, the snow is getting deeper, and Aurelia must find a way to team up with her rival or risk losing her one chance at a better life.
Release date: November 15, 2020 Sub-genre: Upper Young Adult Content rating: PG-13
When a heist goes terribly wrong and the binding spell holding 17-year-old Neva’s powers at bay is shattered, the half-human thief knows she’s in trouble.
Neva has always hidden her Da’Valian heritage while working risky jobs to make a name for herself and serving at her family’s tavern, but she won’t be able to hide much longer. She can either risk the safety of those she cares about or seek out her mother’s people to gain control over her emerging powers.
The Da’Valia are beautiful, brutal creatures created by the god of war, and the austere Da’Valian soldier Astiand reluctantly agrees to take Neva to his clan under his protection. She makes unexpected friends, including the handsome fighter Emiliand, and a new enemy in the clan’s ruthless leader.
Spying on her guardian, the sly heroine quickly discovers just how deep she has stumbled into a dangerous, developing clan feud.
Will she be able to embrace who she is in time to keep her loved ones safe?
Akira Renée is screwed. Everything that she’d been trying to stop from happening has happened and there’s no turning back. She is now the most wanted witch of the Scarlet Court and has become a beacon of both power and poison.
On the hunt for the Three Relics that could save her and her people, Akira must also outrun the Damned Witches who seek to claim her and her soul. And time is running out.
With the help of Kaden Starling, a handsome Fae warrior who makes her heart race and thoughts blur, Akira struggles to keep a clear head, whilst she tries to save the city from the brink of destruction.
Release date: November 19, 2020 Sub-genre: Fairytale/Dystopian Content rating: PG-13
A savior has awakened. But she might just doom them all.
After Aurianna foils a deadly plot to destroy the capital city, the people believe she has fulfilled the prophecy and prevented the civil war.
However, when Aurianna returns home to the future, she realizes her attempts to thwart the catastrophe failed. Nothing has changed. Yet despite everything, the Arcanes still insist the prophecy is woven into her destiny.
Now Aurianna must work to determine how and where the real event will occur, all while still trying to control her elemental abilities. The fate of time itself is at stake if she can’t learn to control her powers.
The timeline will be forever stuck in an endless loop.
Uncovering the shocking secrets of her own past threatens to shatter Aurianna’s already fragile balance between power and self-restraint. These secrets have the potential to rip apart her connection with the people she now holds dear.
A tragic set of events leads to a battle of wills and a horrifying revelation that threatens to destroy her heart . . . and her home.
She might be the savior. But time is literally counting on her.
Release date: November 23, 2020 Sub-genre: Mythology Content rating: G
Zaz’s life just got weirder.
With her dad long gone and a mom who lost touch with reality long ago, all she wants to do is finish her internship and make enough to look after herself. So when her best friend gives her a statue of justice, the last thing she needs or expects is for it to come alive.
Will she be what a goddess needs to fight evil? Or will the scales tip toward darkness forever?
Release date: November 24, 2020 Sub-genre: Paranormal Content rating: PG-13
On her twentieth birthday, Lynnie Russell—just a little ol’ thing from down in Havana, Arkansas—falls in love under a full silver moon. When she wakes up the next morning naked and caked in blood, Lynnie is faced with a horrifying truth. She’s death incarnate. In a race to unearth what she’s become, Lynnie must hide her beastly thing from those she loves most. If only to keep them alive. When an unexpected ally offers help, how can she refuse?
Release date: November 30, 2020 Sub-genre: Urban Fantasy Content rating: PG
Veronica “Ronnie” Moon’s father was known as one of the best Nightwatchers around. When he mysteriously disappears during a mission, Ronnie’s sole purpose is to find out what happened to him.
Enter Moonshadow Academy: the school for young mages training to become licensed Nightwatchers
Here, Ronnie will put her skills to the test. But she’ll have to face more than just elemental magic lessons, self-defense training and weapons forging. Students are going missing, demons are breaking through the barrier, and a traitor might be hiding at the academy. Could everything be related to her father’s disappearance? Ronnie’s in pursuit to find out!
I’m so excited to share this book with the world. It was my favorite book to write so far, and I think you’ll like it too. Petra and Maisie will be back in another Everturn Chronicles book, coming out in March 2021.
Don’t forget to check out the book’s Blog & Bookstagram Tour all week, with lots of fun things like recipes from the tea shop, interviews with me, and there’s even a giveaway for a hardcover copy.
I’m so excited for the release of The Alchemyst’s Mirror on October 27th! This steampunk/gaslamp fantasy novel is the first in the Everturn Chronicles, but is a standalone story, so you don’t have to worry about cliffhangers or catching up for the next book.
Check out all the stops along the Blog & Bookstagram tour with some great features; this post will be updated daily.
C.O. Bonham’s blog~ featuring a review of the book and a recipe for chocolate strawberry scones
The person who designs it earns “points” with each sale which can be redeemed for a gift certificate, which is pretty cool. Adagio also rewards points for purchasing tea, and leaving reviews.
These seven teas are all mentioned in The Alchemyst’s Mirror
I first started by making a list of all the teas mentioned in the book. There happened to be seven, which was perfect considering all of the implications of the number seven in alchemy. Two of the teas are the favorites of the main characters. Petra’s is Hazelnut Midnight, and Maisie’s is Rose Oolong.
Next I went to Adagio’s Signature blend creator. Here you have to choose at least 2 teas to blend. You can also add fun little additions like rose petals, orange peels, (you can even add sprinkles if you want!). So then I figured out what each tea was made out of.
Then there needs to be artwork!
I will say when I received the tins, the designs were much darker than the original art, so I’ll have to keep that in mind for the future! But the sample tines (which are only $5 each) are a very adorable size and perfect for trying a sample or giving as a gift.
Each tea gets its own product page, and you can purchase them in the sample tin size, the 3 ounce pouch, or a 5 ounce tin.
This is a blend of a vanilla oolong tea with a lychee rose green tea, with extra rose petals. I thought the lychee would add a little something extra to the rose flavor. Oolong tea is about halfway between green tea and black tea in terms of caffeine.
Why gunpowder? Not just because it sounds cool and steampunky, it’s actually a type of green tea. Gunpowder green tea is named so because of the shape of the tea leaves after they’ve been processed, forming little pellets. Here it’s blended with blood orange herbal tea, with extra orange peels added.
Did you know that chai just means “tea”? It’s come to be known for spicy cinnamony type teas these days, and the Scitican Chai is a blend of spiced apple chai and masala chai. In the world of The Alchemyst’s Mirror, Scitica (I pronounce it “skit-ika”) is one of the other countries that the Everturns often refer to in regards to exploring for interesting artifacts. This is made with black tea, so it has some caffeine.
This is another tea named after a country in the world of the book- Amaryllia. It’s fairly close to Adonia, where our main characters live, only a three day journey by ship. The tea isn’t just a mint tea, it’s green tea blended with vanilla and chocolate flavors as well as spearmint and peppermint. Green tea is usually about 5-10% the amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee.
A classic “breakfast” tea, this is a blend of an Irish breakfast with straight rooibos tea. Rooibos is sometimes called a red tea, and originates from South Africa, giving the tea more of a reddish hue.
This is one of the plainer, straight-up teas of the collection, and a black tea with caffeine.
Petra Everturn’s favorite tea, this is a blend of mostly black tea, with some hazelnut flavor. It’s bold and simple, with a good amount of caffeine (black tea is usually equal to about 20% the caffeine in a cup of coffee)
It’s also based off of one of my favorite teas, too!
A sweet and fruity tea, extremely low on caffeine, this is a blend of white tea with a peach herbal tea. Adagio’s herbal teas always have lots of flavor, and this peach one even includes pieces of apple, mango and pineapple.
What do you think? Are you a tea drinker? Or would you ever make a tea blend for your own fandom?
To celebrate the release of my two upcoming steampunk stories, I’ll be hosting a virtual book launch party via Facebook Live! Join us Tuesday, November 10th at 8pm EST for giveaways, tea drinking, book reading, and more fun.
I’ve been in a reading slump for a while now. I don’t know whether I’ve just been busy with my new fall releases, or if it’s the social/political/health climate, or what. But I finally finished a book!
I chose this one because H.L. Burke writes fun and snarky characters, and I figured it would keep my interest until the end. And it definitely did. So today I have a book & tea review for you; keep reading to see which tea I chose to go with it and why!
Key points: 🌇 Awesome world building 👥 Great characters 🎭 Theater 🪄 Magic ⚙️ Steampunk 🥐 Pastries 🐌 Snails
Having read this author before, I knew I was going to be in for a fun yet heartfelt tale. And it was set in a theater, with characters who can do magic? Sign me up.
Leo and Muse find a home in The Curiosity Theater, their respective “knacks” (little magics) giving them jobs as a dancer (Muse can levitate) and a professional audience member (Leo can influence other people’s emotions).
When the theater becomes in danger of closing after a tragedy, their livelihoods, their home, and their happiness are all threatened.
Leo is a great main character, her scruples about using her knack on other people an excellent point of character development. And her love of pastries… Comes close to her growing love for another certain someone at the theater.
There are so many interpretations of what the title could really mean as you read the book; there is so much heart in this story and these characters. I definitely found myself actually smiling the last two chapters.
Where do the snails come in? I’ll let you read it to find out!
“Yes, people need food and shelter and goods and services, even buttons, but they need art as well. They need to smile and laugh and cry and see ideas expressed in ways that make them think and feel. They need The Curiosity, or at least what it stands for.”
– (Paxton) H.L. Burke, The Heart of the Curiosoty
☕ The tea: Rooibos Lemon Cloud by Adagio Teas
Tea choice inspired by the somewhat magical pastry shop that Leo frequents, this tea has a bold rooibos flavor with the right amount of creamy lemon. Great hot in this cool weather!
I’m careful not to oversteep this tea, because as with most rooibos teas, the hearty rooibos will overpower any flavor if left too long. I also like to use my disposable tea bags, because, again, the rooibos flavor can get intense, and I’m far too lazy to clean my usual teamaking stuff with soap everytime I use it!
The only thing this tea could be wanting is maybe some lemon peels for added flavor and vibe. But it’s a great decaf tea for anyone who likes lemon, with a hearty rooibos base.