Blog Tour: The Bloodprint by Ausma Zehanat Khan

 

 

Title: The Bloodprint
Author: Ausma Zehanat Khan
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Publication Date: October 3, 2017

Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy

Touring: October 2-October 13, 2017

 

The author of the acclaimed mystery The Unquiet Dead delivers her first fantasy novel—the opening installment in a thrilling quartet—a tale of religion, oppression, and political intrigue that radiates with heroism, wonder, and hope.

A dark power called the Talisman has risen in the land, born of ignorance and persecution. Led by a man known only known as the One-Eyed Preacher, it is a cruel and terrifying movement bent on world domination—a superstitious patriarchy that suppresses knowledge and subjugates women. And it is growing.

But there are those who fight the Talisman’s spread, including the Companions of Hira, a diverse group of influential women whose power derives from the Claim—the magic inherent in the words of a sacred scripture. Foremost among them is Arian and her apprentice, Sinnia, skilled warriors who are knowledgeable in the Claim. This daring pair have long stalked Talisman slave-chains, searching for clues and weapons to help them battle their enemy’s oppressive ways. Now, they may have discovered a miraculous symbol of hope that can destroy the One-Eyed Preacher and his fervid followers: The Bloodprint, a dangerous text the Talisman has tried to erase from the world.

Finding The Bloodprint promises to be their most perilous undertaking yet, an arduous journey that will lead them deep into Talisman territory. Though they will be helped by allies—a loyal ex-slave and Arian’s former confidante and sword master—both Arian and Sinnia know that this mission may well be their last.

 

Ausma Zehanat Khan is the author of The Unquiet Dead, published by St. Martin’s Press/Minotaur Books, and winner of the Barry Award, the Arthur Ellis Award and the Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award for Best First Novel. Her widely acclaimed second novel, The Language of Secrets, was published in 2016. Among the Ruins, her third mystery was published in February 2017. She is also at work on a fantasy series, to be published by Harper Voyager, beginning October 2017. The Bloodprint is Book One of the Khorasan Archives.
A frequent lecturer and commentator, Ms. Khan holds a Ph.D. in International Human Rights Law with a research specialization in military intervention and war crimes in the Balkans. Ms. Khan completed her LL.B. and LL.M. at the University of Ottawa, and her B.A. in English Literature & Sociology at the University of Toronto.
Formerly, she served as Editor in Chief of Muslim Girl magazine. The first magazine to address a target audience of young Muslim women, Muslim Girl re-shaped the conversation about Muslim women in North America. The magazine was the subject of two documentaries, and hundreds of national and international profiles and interviews, including CNN International, Current TV, and Al Jazeera “Everywoman”.
Ms. Khan practiced immigration law in Toronto and has taught international human rights law at Northwestern University, as well as human rights and business law at York University. She is a long-time community activist and writer, and currently lives in Colorado with her husband.
Connect with her at her website: http://www.ausmazehanatkhan.com or on social media

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Did the Bloodprint represent deliverance or deception?
            There were
only three among them who would be able to read it, even if by some fortuitous working
of fate, Arian was able to find it. Herself, Ash, and Ilea.
            And why
would the Black Khan help them? Solely for the sake of the Sacred Cloak?
She raised her eyes to his
face.           
            “You do not
seek the Bloodprint for yourself, Excellency? You were the one who thought
to—intercept it.”
            Thief, her
eyes called him. And liar, as well.
            “Rukh,” he
reminded her.
            She
pretended to soften. “Rukh, then. You said you have proof of the Bloodprint.
Are you able to read the Claim? Is it true you were schooled in the High
Tongue?”
            A glimmer of
amusement in his eyes suggested he fully understood the things she hadn’t expressed,
her private dismissal of his character.
            “I’m not as
fluent as the Companions of Hira.” He made a small bow to Ilea. “But neither am
I ignorant.”
            No, Arian
thought. He wouldn’t be. And he’d evaded the more important question. She
returned to it.
            “You do not
expect to retain the Bloodprint, if I am able to retrieve it?”
            “If you are
able to retrieve it, all of Khorasan will be at your feet.”
            “That is not
why I pursue it.”
            It was
important to her that she convince him of this, though she couldn’t have said
why.
            His eyes
narrowed, as if he’d grown tired of her.
            “A Companion
who does not seek power, perhaps because she wields it so wholly.” There was a
caustic note in his voice. “The Bloodprint doesn’t matter to me. I have taken
the Cloak as payment, it will serve me well enough.”
            His words
challenged her to deny him.
            Arian didn’t
think twice.
            “It isn’t a
prize to be bartered.” She turned to Ilea, prepared to risk the High
Companion’s wrath. “And the Cloak isn’t yours to cede. It belongs at Hira. We
are its rightful guardians.”
An indefinable expression
crossed Ilea’s face.
“It was the price I paid for
the Black Khan’s counsel. A counsel we desperately need.” There was a bitter
edge to her voice. “You’ve been away too long, in pursuit of your misguided
quest. I’ve had other priorities at Hira.” She made an impatient gesture with
her hand. “Either accept your Audacy, or refuse it. I will not countenance
further debate.”
Why not? And then
realization struck Arian. For all of her discouragement of Arian’s efforts with
the slave-chains, Ilea had expected
Arian to bring the Cloak to Hira. How else could she have known to make her
bargain with Rukh?
She had known Arian would seek it. And she had meant to trade it away.
            She was
swamped by a feeling of grief. How had she and Ilea come to this point?
            “Why do you
look so betrayed? You chose to pursue the Cloak for your own ends. I understood
it would serve a larger purpose.”
            “What
purpose?” Arian whispered.
             “The defence of Hira. The defence your actions
made necessary.”
            “My
actions?” Arian echoed the words without understanding their meaning.
            Ilea’s
response was cruel. She had found a way to strike back.
“Yes, your actions. Your unceasing war against the slave-chains has put
the Citadel at risk. The One-Eyed Preacher brings his war to Hira. And when he
comes, the Citadel will fall.”
            Arian
blanched at the words. Was the High Companion right? Had she brought
destruction to the Citadel? When everything she treasured was at Hira?
            “No,” she
said, grief in her voice. “That cannot be true.”
            The Black
Khan murmured something to Ilea, and the waters of the All Ways resumed their
careful dance. Ilea crossed her arms, pressing both hands to her circlets. She
waited impatiently for Arian to mimic the gesture.
“This is not an Audacy to
undertake only as it suits you. Our very survival is at stake—the lives of the
Companions, the sanctity of the scriptorium, the Citadel itself. Will you
accept this Audacy? Or does your courage forsake you at the outset of the war?”
This
isn’t the outset.
I’ve
been waging this war for a decade.
At too great a cost, she now
realized. But Arian accepted the Audacy’s rites. The time for dissent had
passed. She had no choice but to seek out the Bloodprint.
Or face the end of the
world.

Monday, October 2

Book reviewed at Reading Reality

Interviewed at Mythical Books

Book featured at I Smell SheepTuesday, October 3

Book featured at CGB Blog Tours

Book featured at T’s Stuff

Wednesday, October 4

Book featured at Comfy Chair Books

Interviewed at I’m Shelf-ish

Thursday, October 5

Book reviewed at Books for Books

Book featured at The Dark Phantom

Book reviewed at Good Family Reads

Friday, October 6

Book reviewed at Portrait of a Book

Book reviewed at BTH Reviews

Interviewed at Leigh Anderson Romance

Monday, October 9

Book reviewed at Bibliophile Ramblings

Book reviewed at BookStopCorner

Book reviewed at Ashley’s Bookshelf

Tuesday, October 10

Book featured at The Bookworm Lodge

Book featured at A Title Wave

Wednesday, October 11

Book reviewed at Morbid Romantic

Book reviewed at Natural Bri

Book reviewed at Thoughts on Books

Thursday, October 12

Book reviewed at Okbolover

Book reviewed at Lauren’s Crammed Bookshelf

Book featured at The Bookworm Chronicles

Friday, October 13

Book reviewed at GothicMomReviews

Book reviewed at Good Choice Reading

Book reviewed at Books Are Love

 

 


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