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Friday, May 18, 2018

Blog Tour- THE VENERATE ORDER by Troy Dukart An Interview & Giveaway!

Hey everyone! I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the blog tour for THE VENERATE ORDER by Troy Dukart! 

I have an interview with Troy to share with you today! And make sure to enter the giveaway below!

Haven't heard of THE VENERATE ORDER? Check it out!

Author: Troy Dukart
Pub. Date: February 26, 2018
Publisher: Creativia
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 217
Find it: GoodreadsAmazonTBD
Strafe Rocknus has suffered hard losses in his life, but now things are looking up for the college graduate. 

He has a sizzling girlfriend, good friends and a bright career ahead of him. But one day, Strafe awakes in a mysterious cavern, discovers an ancient artifact, and unwittingly ignites a war that spans two worlds: his own, and one he never knew existed. 

With the abyss of the unknown before him, Strafe enters the swirling darkness. Desperate, he must navigate a new and hostile world on the brink of catastrophe, and learn the truth of who he is, while facing a darkness with the power to destroy everything Strafe has ever cared about. 

Soon, he will discover that his greatest strength comes from those he fights for.

Now on to the interview!

Hey Troy! First I want to say welcome to Two Chicks on Books I’m glad you could stop by for a chat! THE VENERATE ORDER sounds AWESOME and I can’t wait for everyone to read it!

For the readers: can you tell us a little bit about the THE VENERATE ORDER and the characters?

A: Thank you Two Chicks on Books for having me. It means a lot! Great to be here. To answer your question, The Venerate Order is a culmination of influences through-out my life, whether in cinematic, video game, or music form. It is a story of a young man named Strafe Rocknus in the year 2088. He discovers an ancient artifact in a cave he emerges in after almost drowning in a raging river. That artifact attracts the attention of a secretive organization who manipulates him and kidnaps his girlfriend. 

Strafe has no choice but to follow them through a portal and finds himself on a new planet on the brink of war.

How many books do you have planned for the series?

A: The sequel is out, it’s called The Venerate Redemption. The entire series will go four books. I’m currently working on the sequel to The Venerate Redemption and should be ready to release it next year!

Were any of the characters in the book inspired by people from your real life?

A: Absolutely. Strafe does take on a similar background to myself. Strafe has a spirit animal wolf named Brutus, whom is named after my dog I had for fourteen years. There is a lot of influence from the rock band Linkin Park, specifically the late Chester Bennington. The rest of the people are influenced from various cultures around the world. There are some with Asian influence, some with Middle Eastern, some European. I lived in Japan for a while so there is for sure a lot of their culture in these books.

Who was your favorite character to write? What about your least favorite?

A: My favorite character to write was surprisingly not the main character! Rousseau, one of Strafe’s allies in the book, is unlike anyone else. Most of the other characters are serious but Rousseau is the joker of the group. He finds humor in everything and loves to have a good time. He isn’t always the most confident but makes up for it with comedy. He talks with a British accent and has many secrets that will shock the readers. He’s also a Sky Pirate, so that’s always fun.

My least favorite character, if I had to pick one, would be one Zon. He’s cold and calculating and is kind of a jerk at times. He’s one of Strafe’s closest and strongest allies as well. Perhaps the mentally strongest of the group, he questions Strafe and the rest of the group constantly. He is a trained assassin and has a unique ability that he refuses to acknowledge. The reason I wrote him this way was Zon is the factual member of the group. He is slightly closed-minded and doesn’t trust people outside of his clan. Kind of goes against my thinking but his ideology is crucial to the story. I didn’t want a bunch of people that were the same. He’s just so different from me personally though.  

What is your favorite passage/scene in THE VENERATE ORDER?

A: In the beginning of the story, Strafe wakes up on a foreign battlefield, at the beginning of a battle. He stands with thousands of other soldiers ready to engage the enemy army in hand to hand combat. Despite his confusion, he musters up the strength and courage to fight, even though he’d never been in a fight in his entire life. He encounters one of the main antagonist on the battlefield which Strafe has a unique connection. One that will stay with him the entire series. It was really fun to write!

As for a favorite passage:
” These memories were as beautiful as they were painful. Like a rose garden, one had to be careful when navigating them.”

What kind of research did you have to do for the story?

A: This story had been in my head for years! I did look into European history to develop Rousseau and much of his story is influenced by the War of the Roses (WotR). WotR was a series of English civil wars for control of the English throne in the later 15th Century. It was cool to research and readers will encounter the War of the Violets.

For Zon, I researched Samurai and ninja histories to find his fighting style and weaponry. For most Samurai, it was not only the sword they had to master but the bow and arrow as well. As for the ninja side, I had to research ninja weapons like the kusari-gama. It’s a pretty wicked weapon that was used to immobilize opponents or strip them of their weapon. It has a sickle on one end and a chain attached to a ball on the other usually. Zon gets creative in combat when he uses it. Shocks Strafe most of the time lol.

Strafe is half Native-American, so I had to research that culture as well. Although he is part of a fictious Native-American group, it was fascinating to see how impressive and diverse Native American culture and history is. I’m from Minnesota, a state in the US which means “Clear Blue Water” in the Dakota language. Not many Sci-Fi/Fantasy stories include Native-Americans so I wanted to incorporate their unique culture and history and bring out their mindset into this story. It helped me create a character who has the strengths from two entirely different cultures and bring out the best in each.

Who is your ultimate book boyfriend/man crush?

A: Lol, I would have to say Edward from Twilight or Four from Divergent. As a heterosexual, I’m not into guys like that in real life but as a reader I enjoyed seeing how those two interacted with their female counterparts on screen and on the page. They both carried swagger and strength but were also  romantic and vulnerable. Their lovers, Bella of Twilight and Tris of Divergent were both strong women in their own rights but when they got close to their lovers, they were allowed to show their vulnerabilities too. I loved that. Those interactions were a great inspiration for how Strafe talks and deals with the women that are interested in him in the story.

What inspired you to write a fantasy series?

A: I would have to say the biggest inspiration came from a Playstation 2 video game called Final Fantasy X. I was blown away at how immersive and moving the world was. When I played that game as a young teenager, The Venerate Order really started to form in my mind. The main character of that game, Tidus, was someone I closely related to. He lost his father at an early age and struggled with his confidence, like I did for most of my early life. Despite his unfortunate past though he rises up to the monumental challenge of saving the world from a dangerous being called Sin with the help of a girl named Yuna and her friends.

I wanted to create a book that impacted readers the way that game impacted me. To give them the understanding that anything in life you focus on and put hard work into you can achieve. That if you don’t quit that you will overcome any challenge in your way.

Lightning Round Questions

What are you reading right now? Or what do you have on your TBR that you’re dying to read?

A: The Fates Divide by Veronica Roth (My favorite author and writing hero!)

What Hogwarts House would the Sorting Hat place you in?

A: Probably Hufflepuff because I’m a nice guy but I’d personally want to be in Gryffindor since I like to play sports.

Twitter or Facebook?

A: Facebook

Favorite Superhero?

A: Batman

Favorite TV show?

A: Big Bang Theory

Sweet or Salty?

A: Sweet 😊

Any Phobias?

A: Bugs and heights

Song you can’t get enough of right now?

A: “Leave your Love” by Tyler Carter

2018 Movie you’re most looking forward to?

A: Avengers: Infinity War

Thanks so much Troy for answering my questions! I can’t wait for everyone to read THE VENERATE ORDER!

About Troy:
Troy Dukart is the author of the Venerate Saga (The Venerate Order, The Venerate Redemption, sequels to follow).

Troy grew up outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota: Twin Cities. Troy is recognized by Toastmasters International as an Advanced Communicator Bronze and Advanced Leader Bronze.

He's lived in Japan as well as California. He loves to travel.

Make sure to stop by his website and sign-up for the newsletter to stay in the know!

Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive a finished copy of THE VENERATE ORDER, US Only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:
5/7/2018- Lauren is ReadingReview
5/7/2018- Confessions of a YA ReaderExcerpt

5/8/2018- The BookWorm DrinkethReview
5/8/2018- Here's to Happy EndingsExcerpt

5/9/2018- The Genre Minx Book ReviewsExcerpt
5/9/2018- Writer of WrongsGuest Post

5/10/2018- Zooloo book blogReview
5/10/2018- Mythical BooksGuest Post

5/11/2018- two points of interestReview
5/11/2018- Book-o-CrazeExcerpt

Week Two:
5/14/2018- Books a Plenty Book ReviewsSpotlight
5/14/2018- Reading for the Stars and MoonReview

5/15/2018- Paperback Princess- Interview

5/16/2018- BookHoundsInterview
5/16/2018- Book Sniffers AnonymousExcerpt

5/17/2018- Kat's BooksReview

5/18/2018- Books A-Brewin'Excerpt
5/18/2018- Two Chicks on Books- Interview

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