I am pleased to be a part of this book blitz organised by Xpresso Book Tours. Check out more about this book below along with an excerpt and guest blog. If you want to order the first book to get caught up you can grab it here.
The sequel to the genre-bending, hugely imaginative Death is but a Dream.
“There must always be a God of Wealth…”
Former police detective Callie Saunders shouldn’t be alive, but she’s been thriving with her new lease on life away from the machinations of the ancient Greek gods and goddesses.
Yet there’s always been someone missing from this little piece of paradise.
When a vengeful god kidnaps her son, she travels back to a world she barely understands to find him. A world where she must face humanity’s greatest enemies and her former lover. If she’s not careful, she’ll lose her soul again. And, maybe, even her heart.
In one of the dining room chairs, he sat, waiting. Our eyes connected across the room, and his milky-white eyes froze me in place. For a second, everything slowed down for us, as I was transfixed by the fact that he was in my house, sitting at my dining room table. Just like I had imagined so many times before, only under different circumstances.
He watched me, unblinking.
“What happened?” Plutus asked softly, although his voice held an undercurrent of tightly coiled tension. “Callista, where is our son?”
The ache in my heart stayed with me as I fell asleep.
In my dreams, I woke up, laying in a courtyard with an ethereal light. I’d woken up here before, back when Plutus and I were traveling across the country. I hadn’t been back here since I got pregnant and Plutus had to return to his duties in the Underworld.
Familiar, strong arms embraced me. In those moments, time slowed down. Lips met mine in a crash of contradictions and unanswered questions. I gasped against them, not ready to get my hopes up. That this was really happening.
“If I could…” he whispered. “If I could, I’d hold him tight and never let him go.”
A moment passed between us. A reminder of what we couldn’t have.
“Callista,” he said gently. “Tell him I said hi. Please.”
I chewed the inside of my cheek, but I nodded.
“Callista,” he said, his voice low. “Callista, I’m so sorr—”
I awoke with a gasp on the cot. I grimaced, feeling sore in unfamiliar spots. Paul stirred on his bed, and I quietly laid my head on the thin mattress. I stroked a hand along his arm, watching every bit of him.
I leaned in to whisper into his ear. I might have been angry at Plutus for everything, but I did know that there were things beyond our control. I understood it, but I didn’t have to like it or accept it. I did decide to give Plutus this peace offering, to let him know that I’d be okay, at least for now. And I wanted to assure Paul, even if it was just his subconscious, that somewhere, his father was thinking about him, that he was worried about him.
“Daddy says hi.”
“I thought you would have fought harder.” He flinched at that, turning his head away. “I thought, if not for me, for Paul.”
“Callista…” he started, but I couldn’t let him steer this conversation anymore.
“Are you trying to push me away?” I asked. This time, my voice hitched in my throat.
He didn’t answer.
“Look,” I said. I slipped my hand out of his. I couldn’t touch him. Not now. Not when there was an ocean of broken dreams between the two of us. “The only way I’ve been able to get through this—any of this—alone, is because I believe that you’ll be there for me on the other side. And I can’t do that if you…if you…don’t love me anymore.”
Once again, he didn’t answer. He just kept his head turned away from me.
“Don’t say that.” My voice was low. “Don’t you ever fucking say that Plutus. Because I can’t move on.”
“Tell me,” he said, his jaw tight. “Tell me why you can’t move on.”
The tears started to fall afresh. How could he not understand?
“Tell me, Callista.”
“I…” I started. “I love you, Plutus.”
He stilled. A thousand different emotions conflicted across his face, mostly a mixture of regret, pain, and despair. And a bit of love. I was surprised to find that, considering that up until a few seconds ago, I believed he had fallen out of love with me.
He pulled me to him, his lips crashing into mine.
“Say that again,” he groaned.
“I love you, Plutus. I still love you.”
I grew up watching Hercules and Xena on TV, which was my first foray into the world of Greek mythology. In that world, gods and goddesses played with mortals like you and me. There were elements of action, and there were elements of drama. Most of all, I remembered it being fun.
Move forward about ten years. I was in high school, and I was an avid Japanese manga fan. Back then, I wanted to draw my own comics. I drew a character and labeled her as Hades’ daughter. I created an entire world around that character and a young adult story to go with it.
Since then, I’ve evolved that story many times, to where it’s almost indistinguishable from the original idea.
It’s never left me though, so one day ten years after that first drawing, and nearly twenty years after watching my first Hercules episode, I sat down to write Death is but a Dream. And Life is but a Nightmare continues that story.
I will say, that while I spent a good deal of time researching Greek mythology, I have taken a few liberties in order to create a modern tale. Some of the characters are reimagined. For others, I chose the source that met my ends, even though I found others that said otherwise.
And then we come to the royal family of the Underworld. A lot of mythology says that Hades, as the God of the Underworld, was unable to produce offspring because Death can’t create Life. Some texts even said that the Furies were his children.
I did find an article that talked about Plutus, the God of Wealth, who was often confused with Pluto, the God of the Underworld, who was also in charge of wealth. Another source said that he actually was Hades’ son, which I honestly found to be pretty cool and a great foil to myths about the Underworld.
My wheels started turning, and that character played a big role when I started world building for the Elysium Legacies.
The Elysium Legacies are nearly twenty-five years in the making. And it feels so great to share with you. Happy reading!!
About Erin Hayes
Sci-fi junkie, video game nerd, and wannabe manga artist Erin Hayes writes a lot of things. Sometimes she writes books.
She works as an advertising copywriter by day, and she’s an award-winning New York Times Bestselling Author by night. She has lived in New Zealand, Hawaii, Texas, Alabama, and now San Francisco with her husband, cat, and a growing collection of geek paraphernalia.
You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org and she’ll be happy to chat. Especially if you want to debate Star Wars.
There’s a $25 Amazon Gift Card up for grabs in this international blitz-wide giveaway. Head to rafflecopter to enter.
Book & Buy Links
Title: Life is but a Nightmare
Series: Elysium Legacies #2
Author: Erin Hayes
Genre: Adult | Mythology | Urban Fantasy
Publication Date: 28 February 2017
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US