Welcome to Two Chicks on Books!!!

Thanks for stopping by! I'm here to share all things Bookish and also news about Movies, TV Shows, and even Video Games I love! I love to read your comments :)

Monday, May 27, 2019

Blog Tour- THE VENERATE SALVATION by Troy Dukart With An Excerpt & Giveaway!



I am stoked to be hosting a stop on the blog tour for THE VENERATE SALVATION by Troy Dukart ! I have an excerpt to share with you today check it out and enter to win the giveaway below!

About The Books:


Title: THE VENERATE SALVATION (The Venerate Saga #3)
Author: Troy Dukart
Pub. Date: July 9, 2019
Publisher: KDP
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 298
Find it: GoodreadsAmazon
READ FOR FREE ON KU!

The Venerate Salvation is the third book in the Sci-Fi / Fantasy, New-Adult series, The Venerate Saga. It follows The Venerate Order and The Venerate Redemption. The main themes of the book revolve around mental health awareness, women’s empowerment, government corruption, and family.

Fans of the book series Divergent and I am Number Four as well as the video game series Final Fantasy will love this book. The story is written from a dual point of view of Strafe, the main character, and Yessa, his estranged girlfriend. Readers will see the story from each side, see how each character evolves throughout the tale, and get to decide on who they think is right.

Strafe and Yessa, along with Strafe’s twin-brother Zixin and their wolves, return to Earth after ending an apocalypse on the distant world of Eternia. They believe they have found peace, but when the demons of Zixin’s past begin to torment him, his mental health begins to deteriorate rapidly. Strafe notices Zixin inflicting self-harm and waking in screaming nightmares daily. The race to find a solution and heal his brother become Strafe's priority while avoiding the threat of the remaining Federation forces. On top of that, Strafe's weapon, the God Blade, remains shattered from his final battle on Eternia and is a shell of its former self. He no longer carries the power he once did.

The situation is complicated by Yessa's yearn to find her parents who she believes were abducted by the Federation. As a former prisoner of war, she is steadfast in her mission to rescue them from the same fate. She finds hope through the newest and most advanced military branch ever created, the Space Force. Internally conflicted, Yessa will make the most difficult decision of her life; leave or stay. This one choice could mean the end of her relationship with Strafe or the death of her parents.

Unknown to the three of them, something else followed them home.

It is hunting them relentlessly and leaving a trail of blood and carnage in its wake. The only people who seem to know what’s going on are a mysterious hacktivist group called the Salvators. Strafe questions their end goal but has no choice but to trust them to save his brother. On top of all that, a virus begins to spread globally, turning anyone it comes into contact with into crystalized monsters called Slates. Unless Strafe and Yessa crack the code on who unleashed it, everyone they know will fall.

The real question is: How do you deal with pain that nobody can see?

Title: THE VENERATE REDEMPTION (The Venerate Saga #2)
Author: Troy Dukart
Pub. Date: March 2 2018
Publisher: Troy Dukart
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 252
Find it: GoodreadsAmazon
READ FOR FREE ON KU!

Strafe and his friends have become the most wanted fugitives in the world. They have no other choice but travel to Crotona, to convince Eternia’s leaders of their innocence before they are hunted down.

But first, they need to stop the Senti from gaining the powerful Guardian Key. Guided by a mysterious visitor in his dreams, Strafe and the group press on, despite the danger. But even with their new-found powers, will it be enough to take down their ruthless adversary?

As tensions in the realm reach a boiling point, lives are on the line at every moment. Strafe is getting closer to freeing his family and getting back home, but it will only come with great sacrifice. He will face the greatest challenges of his life, and fight against not only an enemy, but an ideal.

Strafe must rely on his friends and instincts to guide him. His fate is in his own hands... but he doesn't have to fight alone.

Title: THE VENERATE ORDER (The Venerate Saga #1)
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 excerpt!



CHAPTER 1
Strafe
It's been a year since I returned to Earth. So much had changed. The Geo-political climate had gotten, uncomfortable to say the least. Something had the militaries around the globe on high-alert. I felt our battle might not be over. Personally, every day is a struggle. A struggle to keep my family alive. It's been a lot to take in.
In the blink of an eye, I crossed through the portal with Zixin, Yessa and the three Whitecloud pups, which transported us back to the cave I found the God Blade. Flickers of light from the sword's orb caught my attention before it went translucent. It was as if the soul of the weapon faded away, leaving only a skeleton. The tattoos that identified us three as Guardians changed to dull scar-tissue, no longer with any vibrant color. Our power, gone.
The horrors of war can haunt a person for years after the last bullet is fired. Same way with words. Zixin lived in a nightmare his whole life, and now that it was over, his body and mind weren't handling it well.
A few days passed since we got back to Earth. My brother worried me. He drifted in and out of day-dreams; he had trouble concentrating. When we offered him food, he didn't eat much. Often times I would see him curled up in a ball, shivering and sweating heavily. If there was a loud noise or something startling, it agitated him easily. Whenever there was a crowd, he withdrew from interacting with anyone. Something hurt inside him. There was deep mental trauma that needed to be addressed.
We had to take him somewhere off the grid. The decision was to hide on my tribe's reservation in Minnesota. It'd be far away from the eyes and ears of Federation informants.


In about five days we made it across the country via train.
It was good to have the Whitecloud puppies with us. They were the one bright spot we had going for us at the moment. As we made it to St. Paul, we all got in a taxi. We rode north while enjoying the green grass and cool fall weather. Unlike California's golden hills and warm ocean breeze for sure.
The change was nice.
Finally, we got to the Sky Water reservation near Bemidji. Upon arrival, we were greeted warmly. Even though Yessa was not Native American, they welcomed their new visitor in the traditional way, with gifts. We were given a trailer to sleep in and food to eat. An ancient custom, asking for nothing in return. An Indian gift.
Once we settled, she began to research the Federation and gained insight into the company's goals and reach around the globe. Their power and influence shocked us.
“Strafe, check this out,” Yessa said pointing at the computer screen.
With a blanket in hand, I walked over and draped it on Zixin as he slept on the couch, then turned to her “What is it?”
“I can't believe how many incidents the Federation has been involved with this past year. They had their hand in almost everything. Politics, economy, the web, and government. They're like a virus, spreading and gaining footholds in everything that runs the world,” she shook her head in disbelief.
I put my hand on her shoulder, “When we figure out who we can trust, we will expose them. Their crimes will not go unanswered. But for now, I need to make sure my brother is healed. He tosses and turns in his sleep and I can tell the psychological damage he incurred has taken a toll on him.”
Turning my head towards Zixin, Yessa put her hand on mine, “This is what you were fighting for, what we all were fighting for. You saved him.”
One of the pups had become smitten to me. He loved to be held like a baby in my arms. I named him Goliath. Soon they would be bigger than we were, so we needed to enjoy their infancy.
Holding Goliath and bouncing him gently, I said, “Thanks, Yessa. I'm glad you're with us.”
She smiled and hugged her pup, which she named Esper, short for Esperanza. It meant “hope” in Spanish. Esper loved getting pet and kissed Yessa's cheek. Their bond was strong. The third pup didn't have a name yet. Zixin didn't give him one. He tried to get close to Zixin, but would usually get ignored or pushed away gently.


Sometimes at night I would hold Brutus's collar and rub my fingers over it. His death was still so fresh. While I was looking out the window one night, Yessa caressed my back.
“He'll always be with you,” she consoled.
“You're right, it's so hard to accept he's gone. I miss him so much,” I said.
Suddenly, Zixin awoke in screams and he jumped off the couch. I rushed over to comfort him. “Zixin! Zixin, it's alright! It's just a dream!”
“Ahhhh, these damn nightmares! I can't even take a nap without getting one,” he mumbled between breaths.
“It's not your fault what happened to you, for all those years. It was... you're safe now. Nobody will hurt you here,” I almost said Barzakh, but remembered Zixin's reaction when I did last time. Even mentioning the demon's name brought trauma. Every time he heard the name “Barzakh,” he wanted to cut more of the flesh off his severed arm. His paranoia convinced him at times that the demon might still be inside his body.
Once we calmed him down, I stepped outside with Yessa and the Whiteclouds to get some fresh air. The leaves were beginning to turn colors and the wind was cooler every day. Variety was my spice of life, but she didn't care for cold weather. Living in California can spoil a person.
“What are we gonna do Strafe? A professional needs to look at him. These reactions are only getting worse,” Yessa said.
“Maybe there's someone here on the reservation that can help,” I concluded.
“How long are we going to be here? While we wait, the Federation is gaining power. I can't sit by idly by while that happens.”
“I know Yessa,” I stroked her face, “I want to stop them too. Tiras told me, before I left him behind in that prison cell in Yuwheria, that they have my mother in Europe somewhere. We have to be extremely cautious moving forward because if he knew that, then he probably was communicating with his people back here on Earth somehow. They would no doubt catch us if we're reckless. I can't imagine what they might do to my mom.”
“You're right.”
Letting the pups play in the yard, I prepared dinner. My brother was on my mind 24/7. I noticed that he was cutting himself as small scars on his legs and arm began to appear. Dots of blood coagulating over them provided the evidence of his actions.


The next day, the three of us walked over to the Chief 's house to introduce ourselves. After knocking on his door, the Chief welcomed us inside with a big smile. Written on a wooden block on his desk read 'David “Blackrock” Walker.'
He stood over 6 feet high and was a middle-aged man who had many wrinkles. Like a cowboy, he wore jeans and a jean jacket but also many Native American beads around his neck. His long flowing black hair was braided. As Chief, he was responsible for the care of over 40,000 people on the Sky Water reservation. Our audience had been one he requested himself.
His office was decorated with beautifully carved wooden eagles, bears, and other animals of northern Minnesota. The carpet on the ground showcased a red eagle along with horses and a lush forest alongside a flowing stream. The smell of freshly smoked tobacco emanating from a pipe gave the room a welcoming feeling; tobacco was shared among the Sky Water Tribe to signify unity and peace. Walker sat in his chair and took a few puffs from the pipe.
“Hello, my friends, welcome to Sky Water land. Please take a seat,” Walker motioned to three leather chairs by his desk.
“Thank you,” Yessa said.
Sitting down in front of Mr. Walker, Zixin's eyes lighted up for the first time since we got back. He loved all the Native America memorabilia.
“You like this stuff huh son?” Walker asked.
“Yes, it is very calming, I like being here,” Zixin said while avoiding eye contact. Seemed he was a bit shy.
Honestly, it was the first time he looked alive.
“Well good! They have been passed down in our tribe for many generations. Helps me remember what I'm fighting for,” he grinned before turning to us, “So, what brings you to our land?”
We explained as best we could what had taken place on Eternia. Everything from the cave, the Federation, the Slates, to Guardian, from both of our sides. Walker listened intently to our story.
Afterward, we continued the discussion.
“So, you're telling me that your mother is in danger and you're afraid you'd be hunted unless you stay here?” Chief asked.
“Yes sir, we didn't know where to turn to. That's why we came here, to ask for your protection and to help us find her,” I explained.
“My parents might be too, I never got a chance to tell them I was safe,” Yessa added.
“Before you got here, I had our people look into your backgrounds,” Chief said out as he turned his monitor, “It seems as though your mom and dad were very involved in search efforts for you Yessa.”
Pulling a newspaper from inside his desk, he showed an article from the New Santa Barbara Times that explained how Yessa's parents organized a city-wide hunt for her. Although they never found her, they pin-pointed back the Federation's involvement and went after them. They both went missing three months ago.
“Where are my parents?!” she shrieked as she brought a hand to her mouth.
“Taken,” Zixin whispered as he rocked back and forth.
“Damnit, just like ours,” I said as I pounded the desk.
“Be calm child, for the moment there is nothing you can do. What I recommend is that you meet with our lawyers and go about pursuing the Federation LEGALLY,” Chief emphasized, “Any other way and you will end up missing too.”
“I can't just sit here and wait. I was taken. I was victimized. That's not gonna happen to them because of me,” Yessa stormed out of the office.
It was best to let her go.
“Zixin, do you mind giving the Chief and me a moment?” I asked.
“Give you a moment, give you a moment,” Zixin murmured as he walked outside. He brushed his hand across every Native artifact he could on his way outside.
“Poor man,” Walker shook his head while taking a puff from his pipe.
“Yes,” I put my head down, “I'm afraid he's in much worse condition than I thought. Is there a doctor here he can see? Someone who can help treat him?”
“We have a licensed psychologist that works with the reservationist here. Unfortunately, there are many people that have problems with mental health that keeps our doctor busy. Our job is to take out the stigma of talking about it. Damn shame, but she does amazing work. I'll make sure Zixin sees her as much as she's available. He seemed pretty intrigued by our culture. Maybe you can start there,” Walker advised.
“I'm interested in learning more myself. Yessa is anxious, understandably. Undeserving of this,” I said.
“You may find peace here, from the Federation and the world... but you will never find your mother if you do nothing. I pray our ancestors to speak their wisdom to you through the wind. Please let me know if you need anything,” Chief said as he followed me out. As I opened the door, he handed me a beaded wooden necklace. Bright colored beads of different hues blended nicely together. There were tiny leaves carved into the wood.
“Thank you, for everything.”
Walker gave me a strong handshake and hug; afterward, I exited outside. Sitting on the porch wearing an old Native Poncho that he found, Zixin looked out into the distance. It had a design of an eagle in bright colors.
“Keep it brother, it suits you,” Walker complemented.
He smiled; the first time I'd ever seen him do that. We walked back with the Whitecloud pups to the trailer. After we ate dinner, it was time to go to sleep.


In the morning, the sun creeped in through the blinds and danced on my eyelids to wake me up. Walking out to the kitchen area, I found Yessa was on the computer. Dark lines around her eyes gave away she'd been up for most of the night. As I stretched and got out of the bed, I went over to her and gave her a hug.
“Find anything?” I asked.
“No, but I think I found some people who can,” she said. On the screen was on a recruiting website for the military. It read,
“JOIN THE SPACE FORCE AND REACH FOR THE STARS.”
“Space Force? Didn't you say you had enough of those people?” I said.
“They have eyes all over Strafe. There's no place the Federation can hide from them,” Yessa told me.
“How is the Space Force going to help us find those bastards and our family?” I asked her.
“I've been researching them and they have the ability to travel anywhere in the world in thirty minutes via Space Suits. They control all the space assets of the U.S. Government and we can use them to locate whatever we want,” Yessa stated.
“I don't think they're just going to cater to your agenda Yessa, they aren't hiring people for that,” I informed her.
She signed and rubbed her eyes before looking back to me, “And what? Just sit here and do nothing? Strafe, I don't like it here. I... can't stay,”
“Zixin is in no condition to be moving around constantly, let alone fight against a group of crazy zealots. He needs time to heal, and this is the safest place,” I responded.
She looked at me with a frown and said, “I leave for officer training tomorrow...”
The news shocked me to the point I almost lost my balance. “WHAT? How come you didn't discuss this with me? Yessa, you are my ONLY ally besides our pups and Zixin. And I... don't want to lose you again.”
A tear fell down her cheek. I went to console her but she put her hand up to stop me, “Strafe, you need to do what's in the best interest for you and your brother. I need to what's best for me and my family,” Yessa insisted.
“I thought we were in this together? I'm... I'm sorry I got you involved in this. I'm sorry for everything. But when we went through that hell on Eternia, fighting that war, I was doing it to save you. There are other ways of going after them,” I was explaining before she cut me off with watering eyes,
“Strafe, I ask you take care of Esper while I'm gone. It will be hard for her to be without me, I already know. If you love me, you will let me do this.”
I dropped my head into my hands. My heart ached at the thought of losing Yessa. She meant so much to me; my mind was in a panic. I tried to think of anything I could say to stop her decision. “I don't wanna lose you,” my eyes watered when I looked back at her.
Her lips curled and she had to fight back from sobbing, but gently shook her head “no.” Giving into her decision, I let out a sigh, wiped my tears, and slowly sat in my chair. “If this is what you want, I won't stop you. I will be here until Zixin is cured. I promise to take care of Esper for you,” I sniffled.
“It's not your fault Strafe. When I find my parents, I will come back to you. I swear it,” she said.
Walking over to me, she wrapped her arms around my shoulders. We embraced for a long time. There was no way to know how long she'd be gone.
“Yessa,” I said, wiping a tear.
She grabbed my hand.
“If you find my mom, let me know.”
Yessa nodded. We had slept in the same bed the past few nights, but she slept on the couch that night. The next day would be hard for everyone.


Waking up at sunrise, I found an empty couch with Esper sleeping at the foot of it. Zixin was looking out the window while scratching the scarred skin of his left armpit. Losing his arm didn't seem to affect him much, but he had trouble performing basic tasks like tying his shoes. Chief fixed this by giving him some moccasins to wear. One had an eagle stitched on the top, the other a bear.
I walked around looking for Yessa but she was nowhere to be seen. There was a note near the microwave,

Sorry to leave without saying goodbye. Please know that this is something I have to do on my own. Guard our family. I love you Strafe.

XoXo

Yessa.







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:

1 winner will receive a the complete VENERATE SAGA, International.




Tour Schedule:
Week One:
5/20/2019- BookHoundsExcerpt
5/21/2019- words_on_the_shelvesReview
5/22/2019- The Books I ReadReview
5/23/2019- The Bookworm DrinkethReview
5/24/2019- Here's to Happy EndingsExcerpt

Week Two:
5/27/2019- Two Chicks on BooksExcerpt
5/28/2019- The Reading Corner for AllReview
5/29/2019- Rhythmicbooktrovert- Review
5/30/2019- Literary PortalsReview
5/31/2019- Dazzled by BooksExcerpt

Week Three:
6/3/2019- Mythical BooksExcerpt
6/4/2019- Books a Plenty Book ReviewsExcerpt
6/5/2019- Bean's BookshelfReview
6/6/2019- Confessions of a YA ReaderExcerpt
6/7/2019- Good Choice ReadingSpotlight

Week Four:
6/10/2019- Jaime's WorldExcerpt
6/11/2019- Kat's BooksReview
6/12/2019- Lone Tree ReviewsExcerpt
6/13/2019- Smada's Book Smack- Spotlight
6/14/2019- ParajunkeeExcerpt

Week Five:
6/17/2019- Owl Always Be ReadingExcerpt
6/18/2019- JB's Bookworms with Brandy MulderExcerpt
6/19/2019- Smada's Book SmackReview
6/20/2019- Moonlight Book ReaderReview
6/21/2019- Zooloo's Book Diary- Review

2 comments:

  1. Thanks For.. Sharing Information...Your website is very nice..

    This is Sarkari Result From India.. Click Here To Open link and Get Your Latest Jobs, Admit Cards, Result, ANswer Key & many more.. thanks..

    Nice Site...............

    Sarkari Result
    Sarkari Results
    sarkariexam
    Sarkari Result 2019
    sarkariresult
    sarkari job
    sarkariexam result
    sarkari naukri in up
    rojgar result
    sarkari result in hindi

    ReplyDelete
  2. I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.
    Sarkari Result

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...