Not a Subscriber? » Click Here to sign up for the Tor/Forge newsletter

Back to Newsletter Archive

Tor/Forge May 2009 Newsletter

In This Issue

Keyholders #1: This Side of Magic by Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones

A Dragon, a Rat, and a Unicorn walk into a juice bar…

Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones recently sat down for an interview with three of their characters from their new series, Keyholders. The characters wanted to know how the authors write together. It was all new to them, considering Dracula is a dragon, Kirin a unicorn, and Buttercup a rat from the Other Side of Magic.

Dracula: Tell me about turkberries?

Debbie Dadey/Marcia Thornton Jones (DD/MTJ): What would you like to know?

Dracula: Where to get them? How to grow them? Can I smush them up and make turkberry juice slush?

Kirin: Cool it, dragon-breath. This isn’t about you.

Buttercup: Kirin’s right. Let me start.

Dracula: <Snort>

DD/MTJ (waving away a cloud of dragon smoke): We’d be happy to talk about our new series. We had great fun writing it.

Buttercup (pulling on her whiskers): How did you find out about us? After all, we’ve been hiding safely on the Other Side of Magic for centuries.

DD/MTJ: Well, like all good stories, we started with two important words.

Dracula: Turkberry juice?

Kirin: Oh, for crying out loud. Would you forget about turkberries?

DD/MTJ: A-hem. The two words we always start with are, “What if?”

Kirin: That’s it? Two little words and you end up with a magical realm that includes an evil boggart queen who’s determined to take over the real world?

DD/MTJ: Exactly. We started by asking, “What if there really was magic? What if magical animals could link with normal everyday kids? What if an evil queen was trying to take over the world?

Buttercup: What do you mean, “what if?” Of course there is magic. If there wasn’t, I wouldn’t be here.

DD/MTJ: Good point. It was such great fun when you appeared at the end of the first book, This Side of Magic. Of course, Natalie isn’t very thrilled about having a rat for a lifelong link.

Kirin:  Natalie is a bit of a . . .

Dracula: Brat!

DD/MTJ: Dracula! Natalie is a Keyholder, along with Penny and Luke! They’re very important.

Kirin:  Dragon-breath is right. Natalie is a bit of a diva. I mean, who does she think she is? She wanted to use my tail as a dishrag!

DD/MTJ: Sounds like we may have two divas in our story.

Buttercup: Ahem. May I remind you and the readers that Natalie is my link, and I’ll thank you to talk nicely about her.

DD/MTJ: Sorry, Buttercup. You’re absolutely right. After all, it’s up to Natalie, Penny, and Luke to save the world from being taken over by the evil boggart queen in This Side of Magic and The Other Side of Magic. Their adventures continue this fall with Inside the Magic and The Wrong Side of Magic. You can find out more by visiting us at and

Kirin: The Keyholders do have help, you know.

DD/MTJ: Of course they do! The Keyholders series tells the story of three kids who find out that they have been chosen to keep magic out of the real world with the help of three very magical links. A dragon . . .

Dracula: Me! Me! Me!

DD/MTJ: A unicorn. . .

Kirin: That would be me.

DD/MTJ: And a rat . . .

Buttercup: Yours truly.

Dracula: You know what would be good with those books? A big bowl of turkberries.

Everyone: Will you please stop talking about turkberries?

Dracula: <Snort>

Debbie Dadey’s and Marcia Thornton Jones’ new Keyholders series launched on April 28 with This Side of Magic (978-0-7653-5982-7; $3.99) and The Other Side of Magic (978-0-7653-5983-4; $4.99). See the trailer here.

Eve of Darkness by S.J. Day

What if?  Two little words that created the world of S. J. Day’s Eve of Darkness

That’s the core question that sparks story premises. In the case of the Marked series, that simple question blossomed into hundreds more that all together created a heroine and world that continually surprise and delight me.

What if an ordinary person was suddenly sucked into a heretofore unknown preternatural underground? What if she was completely mortal, with no fangs or claws or magical tricks? What if she had a close family unit, a great job, and an upscale condo on the beach in Orange County, CA—all of which would be jeopardized by her new life—but which she wasn’t willing to give up? What if she wasn’t trained in combat techniques, was terrible with knives, and had no clue about the skills of her new supernatural entities? What if everything was stacked against her—she’s an agnostic forced to work for God, a woman mentored by two former lovers, and a newbie with a big target stuck to her back because she’s important to important people?

The what ifs also enabled me to explore different perspectives on familiar Biblical stories. What if Cain wasn’t really all bad? What if Abel wasn’t totally good? What if the archangels are as famous and powerful in their mortal guises as they are in their celestial lives? The more I researched, the more it all fell into place. The more questions I had, the more answers I found. Some projects seem to take on a life of their own and the Marked series definitely did that for me.

The books were so much fun to write. The process was an experience unlike anything I’ve known before. Though Evangeline Hollis is an ordinary person in an extraordinary world, she is a force to be reckoned with because she makes her liabilities work as strengths—for instance, her agnosticism gives her a unique take on her new world. As a writer who considers herself more of a narrator than a creator, I have been amazed by her resourcefulness in getting out of the amazing amount of trouble she runs into. She manages to come out on top every time using mulish determination and keen intelligence. It’s easy for me to say that Eve is my favorite of all my heroines.

So... now it’s your turn to answer a question. What if you picked up Eve of Darkness on your next trip to the bookstore? Would you enjoy Eve’s adventures as much as I enjoyed writing them? I’d love for you to stop by my website and let me know!

Eve of Darkness (978-0-7653-6041-0; $6.99) by S.J. Day was released from Tor on April 28. The Marked series continues this summer with Eve of Destruction (978-0-7653-6042-7; $6.99) and Eve of Chaos (978-0-7653-6043-4; $6.99).

Haunting Museums by John Schuster

Secret Artifacts and Truly Haunting Museums

By John Schuster

What is it about museums that send tens of thousands of people through their doors every year? Is it the “touch me” kiddie-centric exhibits? Is it the chance to look at someone else’s valuables, or the opportunity to stand before the odd and unsettling? Or are we tantalized by a supernatural pull that draws us to certain special and, sometimes, cursed artifacts? While books and movies, from Preston and Child’s Relic to the blockbuster Night at the Museum and the forthcoming sequel Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian, have offered glimpses of these little-known mysteries, Haunting Museums reveals the secrets behind many of the world’s most memorable artifacts, those whose legacies refuse to die.

In the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Carnegie Museum lie the heads of two dinosaurs who, if they could talk, would tell you that they have been given the wrong bodies. In the Dearborn, Michigan, Henry Ford Museum rests the captured final breath of arguably America’s most prolific inventor, Thomas Alva Edison. In a wing of the Washington, D.C., Smithsonian Museum of American History sits a surviving piece of a Mormon temple originally seen in a vision by Joseph Smith—a building which survived several man-made and natural disasters. In the Chicago, Illinois, Field Museum stand the remains of two immense lions, called demons and named The Ghost and The Darkness for their almost preternatural skills at hunting humans in 1898 East Africa.

Other objects deal with things science can not easily explain away. John Dee’s occult tools and the “cursed” remains of an ancient Egyptian mummy hold a special place in the British Museum’s collection in London. In other instances, the museums themselves are focal points of mysteries, including the Fall River, Massachusetts, house where Lizzie Borden’s parents met their untimely ends under their daughter’s axe and the deck-plates of United States aircraft carrier Hornet, anchored off Alameda Point, California, which, some say, are still haunted by crew members lost in long-ago battles.

From the contents of Smithsonian Institution in the nation’s capitol to the Voodoo Museum of New Orleans, Haunting Museums is fun reading for tourists, families, and all students of the mysteries of the world.

Haunting Museums (978-0-7653-2292-0; $14.95) by John Schuster was released from Forge on April 28.

One Second After by William R. Forstchen

New Releases

Click here to view all new releases


Click here to view all events

Preview Chapters

God’s Children
by Harold Coyle

Keyholders #1: This Side of Magic
by Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones

Keyholders #2: The Other Side of Magic
by Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones

Eve of Darkness
by S.J. Day

In a Time of Treason
by David Keck

Singularity’s Ring
by Paul Melko

Hell on Earth
by David L. Porter with Lee Reeder

Zoe’s Tale
by John Scalzi

The Dragons of Babel
by Michael Swanwick

Slan Hunter
by A.E. van Vogt and Kevin J. Anderson

Manga Previews

  Avalon: Web of Magic Book 9
by Rachel Roberts

  It Takes a Wizard
story by Thomas Hart, art by Sean Lam

Featured Videos

  Book Trailer: Keyholders Series

  Blood Groove Trailer

  Dan Dos Santos paints Brandon Sanderson’s Warbreaker

Offer of the Month

Giveaway: Frozen Fire by Bill Evans and Marianna Jameson

Enter for a chance to win a free copy. 50 copies will be awarded.

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. You must be 18 or older and a resident of the 50 United States or D.C. to enter. Promotion ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on 5/18/09. Void in Puerto Rico and wherever prohibited by law. For Official Rules and to enter, go to Sponsor: Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.

Green by Jay Lake

Halo: Contact Harvest by Joseph Staten

Apocalypse 2012 by Gary Jennings, Robert Gleason, and Junius Podrug

The Dragons of Babel by Michael Swanwick

The Mystery of Grace by Charles de Lint

City of Fire by Thomas Fitzsimmons

Bones of the Dragon by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman

The Breath of God by Harry Turtledove

Busted Flush edited by George R. R. Martin

Ender in Exile by Orson Scott Card

Halo: The Cole Protocol by Tobias Buckell

Territory by Emma Bull

The Ancient by R. A. Salvatore

Inside Straight edited by George R. R. Martin

Confessor by Terry Goodkind

Paul of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Visit us online @

Back to the Top

Copyright ©2006-2009 by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.
Tor and Forge are trademarks of Tom Doherty Associates, LLC, and are registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Facebook FriendFeed Goodreads Google Reader LibraryThing MySpace StumbleUpon Twitter Tumblr Wordpress YouTube