Thursday, April 15, 2021

Darkness Entrhoned and The Awakening by Stephen Zimmer - Book Tour

Get ready for a great new blog tour taking place from April 14-21 celebrating two new releases from award-winning author Stephen Zimmer!

This blog tour spotlights the latest Rayden Valkyrie Tale, Darkness Enthroned, and the latest Ragnar Stormbringer Tale, The Awakening! Readers of fantasy, heroic fantasy, sword and sorcery, dark fantasy, and action-driven tales will love these adventures featuring two iconic protagonists!

This blog tour features new posts, top ten lists, and reviews!

About the author:  Stephen Zimmer is an award-winning author and filmmaker based out of Lexington Kentucky. His works include the Rayden Valkyrie Tales (Sword and Sorcery), The Ragnar Stormbringer Tales (Sword and Sorcery) the Rising Dawn Saga (Cross Genre), the Fires in Eden Series (Epic Fantasy), the Hellscapes short story collections (Horror), the Chronicles of Ave short story collections (Fantasy), the Harvey and Solomon Tales (Steampunk), and the Faraway Saga (YA Dystopian/Cross-Genre).

Stephen’s visual work includes the feature film Shadows Light, shorts films such as The Sirens and Swordbearer, and the Rayden Valkyrie: Saga of a Lionheart TV Pilot.

Stephen is a proud Kentucky Colonel who also enjoys the realms of music, martial arts, good bourbons, and spending time with family.

Twitter: @sgzimmer
Instagram: @stephenzimmer7

Book Synopsis for Darkness Enthroned: In the heart of a frigid northern winter, Rayden Valkyrie takes refuge in the lands of the Sarvan people when a mounted column of Attun warriors is seen passing along the outskirts of their territory heading west.

Far from their steppe domain in the east, the Attun warriors are journeying into a remote, unpopulated wilderness, drawing great alarm from the Sarvans about their purpose. Learning of the situation, Rayden joins with a band of warriors from the area’s villages to investigate.

Following the tracks of the Attun warriors, they are led to the base of an enormous, ancient burial mound, where the trail vanishes abruptly. A mystery looms, and Rayden seeks to discover the nature of the burial mound and the reason why the Attuns have traveled so far from their homelands to enter it.

Darkness Enthroned is a stand-alone adventure that is part of the Rayden Valkyrie Tales.

Book Synopsis for The AwakeningFollowing the end of a brutal war, Ragnar Stormbringer travels across the sea channel to the west with the warrior Thorsalla to visit her brother’s new settlement in the fertile lands of Ulstara.

Coming upon a scene of total devastation, they find no bodies, but there are a large number of strange tracks heading in one direction and signs of a few survivors in another.

Ragnar will soon discover that some mysteries are the gateways to even greater ones.

The Awakening is a stand-alone adventure that is part of the Ragnar Stormbringer Tales.

Guest Post

The Inspiration Behind Darkness Enthroned and The Awakening, and the Hardest Part About Writing Them.

 I would like to thank Jazzy Book Reviews for having me here today, to share my thoughts on the inspirations behind Darkness Enthroned and The Awakening, and the hardest part of writing them.

First, I will take a look at Darkness Enthroned, which is one of the stand-alone adventures that is part of the Rayden Valkyrie Tales.  For this particular story, I wanted to show Rayden in a wintry, snow-filled adventure.  She hails from northern lands, but, so far, most of the tales that I have written so far involving her have been in temperate to desert settings (from the Dark Sun Dawn Trilogy to the other, currently available, Rayden Valkyrie Tales like Across Desert Plains and Blood of a Queen.)

Of course, over the course of her life journey, Rayden has had a lot of adventures in far northern lands, and I saw this as a good opportunity to bring one to the reader. So, for this tale, I had her sheltering with a tribe of warriors inspired by the early pagan, Slavic tribes that inhabited the forests of what is now Russia and the Ukraine. 

I also have a fascination with large, ancient burial mounds and the kinds of tales and myths that surround them.  Couple this with my deep interest in Nephilim lore, and I had the foundation for a plot that would work well in a remote wilderness gripped in the depths of winter. 

For The Awakening, I was very interested to tell a Ragnar story set in a Celtic-inspired setting.  I had a great experience writing Depths of Night, which is set in lands inspired by the Picts and their culture, but for this one I wanted to draw more from ancient Ireland for my setting the culture found within it.

This kind of lore is rich with possibilities, from great warrior champions, to dark magick and the supernatural, to sacred stone formations and Druidic practices, and I brought all of these elements to bear in the plot, setting, and characters of The Awakening.  From Necromancy, to the undead, to banshees and more, there was plenty to test Ragnar’s mettle and skill with.  The nature of the kings of ancient Ireland also gave me some good ground for the plot and setting, it led to the planting of seeds for future stories.

The hardest part about writing both The Awakening and Darkness Enthroned centers upon one primary area: the places of the stories within the context of the life stories of each of these heroic characters.  I have to give a lot of thought to where they are placed in the timelines of Rayden’s and Ragnar’s lives, in relation to what comes before and what follows these individual adventures. 

For example, with The Awakening, there are elements in an earlier adventure of Ragnar’s chronicled in Tears in the Snow that foreshadow this adventure, and also another one that comes between the two that I have not yet written and had published.  Tears in the Snow and The Awakening can both be read as stand-alone tales, but as they, and the yet-to-be-written story in between them, tell parts of Ragnar’s life, I have to keep a lot of things in mind when writing them.  Making sure that everything fits in the right places within the chronology of Ragnar’s life is, definitely, the most difficult part of the process, and it is the same challenge with the Rayden stories.

It is my hope that this has given you some insights into the particular inspirations behind these two stories, and the aspect I find the most challenging in writing them, and I invite you to join Rayden Valkyrie and Ragnar Stormbringer on their adventures through these tales!

Author Links:


Twitter: @sgzimmer

Instagram: @stephenzimmer7

Tour Schedule and Activities

4/14    Writer Groupie        Guest Post

4/14    Armed with A Book Review

4/14    The Book Junkie Reads   Top Ten's List

4/15    Jazzy Book Reviews         Guest Post

4/16    Bowen Greenwood           Review

4/16    Armed with A Book             Review

4/17    The Horror Tree  Guest Post

4/18    Book Lover's Boudoir     Review

4/19    Sapphyria's Books Review

4/20    Marian Allen, Author Lady          Top-Tens List

4/21    Amazing Gaming Productions Blog             Review

Links for Darkness Enthroned:

Kindle Version:

Barnes and Noble Link:

Links for The Awakening:

Kindle Version: and Noble Link:


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