Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Giveaway & Interview!! Author Dakota Banks!

A demon's assassin for centuries, Maliha Crayne has gone rogue, determined to save a life for every one she's destroyed in order to free herself from an eternity of enslavement, damnation, and excruciating torment. But as the powers that sustained her in the past fade, she is wary of trusting those closest to her-especially her lover, Jake. Should Maliha listen to her heart or the alarms going off in her head? Then her closest friends begin to disappear, one by one. Amid her anger, suspicion, and sorrow, she feels her life spiraling out of control.
Worse still, a beautiful, Renaissance murderess is recruiting Maliha as her new assassin. Maliha is turning into a lethal puppet with an evil Immortal pulling the strings, forced to kill innocents or see her missing friends die horribly. Suddenly trapped in a moral no-man's land, Maliha is damned if she does and damned if she doesn't…and time is rapidly running out.

Follow the Mortal Path with Maliha.
It’s the adventure of several lifetimes.

Our Interview with Dakota Banks!

Welcome to the blog, Dakota! Can you tell us a little bit about the inspiration behind DELIVERANCE? 
First, I’d like thank Julia and Rex Robot Reviews for the wonderful opportunity to visit this blog! 

Deliverance is book three of the Mortal Path series. Maliha Crayne, heroine of the series, was born in 1672. She was a wife and healer in the American colonies when she was falsely accused of being a witch by a jealous woman. While burning at the stake, Maliha was snatched from the flames by an ancient Sumerian demon and offered a chance at immortal life—if she agreed to serve him as an assassin. With her body afire, it seemed like a good idea, but hundreds of years later her conscience re-emerged. Rebelling against the demon, she became a rogue with the dual goals of redeeming her soul and eliminating all the Sumerian demons from Earth. She’s had to feel her way back to being human and opening her heart to friendship and love. 

The Mortal Path series is based on Sumerian mythology. I love studying cultures and mythologies of the world, and Sumeria’s is one of my favorites. The people of Sumer lived about 5,000-8,000 years ago in the land area that is now Iraq. They believed their gods came from another planet, Nibiru, that came close to Earth every 3,600 years. When the planet was in its close location, the gods came to Earth to look for gold. They stayed for hundreds of thousands of years, and returned to Nibiru on another one of its 3,600 year approaches. Ancient astronaut theories abound, due to artwork left by the Sumerians that seems to portray space ships, alien shapes, and diagrams of the solar system which the Sumerians couldn’t have known about. Next up, Alien Autopsy! One explanation among many for the end of the Mayan calendar this December is that Nibiru is approaching Earth again, and the Sumerian gods are coming back to judge how we’ve been doing in their absence. Hmm, I hope we measure up. That was probably way more than you wanted to know about Sumerian mythology.

Since Deliverance is urban fantasy, I needed a way to make all those past events relevant to our current time. So I imagined that when the Sumerian gods left Earth, seven nasty demons were left behind and still live; it was one of them that recruited Maliha. 

If Maliha Crayne had a playlist, what songs would she include? 
Since Maliha is nearly 350 years old, her playlist would reflect the music she came to love over her long lifetime as well as her current favorites. Here’s a small sample of her eclectic list. 
  • Antonio Vivaldi – The Four Seasons (1725) 
  • George Frideric Handel – Messiah (1742) 
  • Ludwig van Beethoven – Symphony No. 5 (1807) 
  • Giuseppe Verdi – Requiem (1874) 
  • Louis Armstrong – Stardust (1930) 
  • Elvis Presley – Heartbreak Hotel (1956) 
  • John Coltrane – A Love Supreme (1965) 
  • Bob Dylan – Like a Rolling Stone (1965) 
  • John Lennon – Imagine (1971) 
  • Grateful Dead – Brown Eyed Woman (1972) 
  • The Rolling Stones - You Can't Always Get What You Want (1973) 
  • Michael Jackson – Thriller (1984) 
  • Whitney Houston – I Will Always Love You (1992) 
  • Mariah Carey – Hero (1993) 
  • Celine Dion – My Heart Will Go On (1997) 
  • Rihanna – Disturbia (2008) 
  • Enrique Iglesias – I Like How It Feels (2011) 
  • Adele – Set Fire to the Rain (2011) 
  • Paul McCartney – My Valentine (2012) 
Who would you choose, from another series, to kick ass with Maliha Crayne? 
That would be another assassin, of course! Gin Blanco, from Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassins series, could partner up with Maliha for her missions. They both like edged weapons! Gin, though, is a bit hard and dare I say, bloodthirsty compared to Maliha, who’s focused on redemption. I don’t think redemption is even a fleeting thought in Gin’s mind. 

What is your absolute favorite scene in DELIVERANCE that you could *never* cut? 
Most of my favorite scenes have spoilers in them, but here’s one I absolutely love, showing a different side of Maliha. Let me set the stage. Maliha’s invaded the home of Victoria. Victoria has a ticket to an event Maliha needs to attend, so Maliha will knock out Victoria, take the ticket, dress in Victoria’s clothing, and go to the event pretending to be Victoria. Bartlett is a Golden Retriever, and Norman is Victoria’s absent husband. 

It was nearly time to leave. Maliha turned off the television and removed the prepared syringe from her briefcase. As she approached, Victoria eyed the needle. 
“My arms hurt and I’m hungry,” Victoria said. 
“I have to pee. You can’t leave me like this.” Maliha considered. Victoria wouldn’t like to be found in a wet bed. Norman wouldn’t like it. And I should care? She looked at Victoria, who had a pleading look on her face. Bartlett was flapping his tail against the bed. I’ll do it for Bartlett. He wouldn’t like a wet bed either—might get blamed for it. I can’t believe I’m doing this. If anybody ever finds out, I swear I will die of embarrassment. 
“Stand up,” Maliha said. Victoria, who’d been lying down for several hours, stumbled to her feet. 
“Hold still. I’m going to put the cuffs on in front.” Victoria swayed a bit but offered no resistance. With her hands cuffed in front, she could manage in the bathroom. 
“Potty break,” Maliha said, walking her over to the door. She pushed Victoria into the room and politely turned her back near the door. She could see the woman in a mirror, so she’d have plenty of warning if Victoria decided to attack her. 
“Hurry up.” “You’re making me nervous.” “Five seconds.” Ah. Success. With Victoria back on the bed, Maliha injected her. “Am I going to get high?” “No. Just relax.” When Victoria was sound asleep, Maliha uncuffed her, got dressed quickly, and went downstairs. Bartlett padded along with her. 
“Hey, you’re supposed to stay upstairs.” He sat down and looked at her expectantly. “You too?” she said. There was a leash hanging up by the back door. She took Bartlett outside, and when they came in, she opened the bag of dog food she’d brought and filled his bowl. “Can I leave now?” 

What kind of research did DELIVERANCE require? 
The better question might be, what kind of research didn’t it require? The Sumerian mythology that forms the basis of the series needs research, as do the locations Maliha travels to, the weapons and fighting actions that she uses, the latest technical gadgets mentioned in the book, surveillance techniques, surgery suites, security measures, comas, learning about urban running, making up an entire conspiracy that fit historical facts, the floor plan of the Art Institute in Chicago, the layout of a public square in New Zealand, what happens when a man takes a really hard kick to his privates, resorts in the Greek Isles, nasty historical villains, and waste treatment plants. I’m sure I left some things out. 

Can you tell us some of your favorite Urban Fantasy novels? 
I’m a fan of Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassin series, Patricia Brigg’s Alpha and Omega series, Kim Harrison’s The Hollows, Stacia Kane’s Downside Ghosts series, and Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files. I’m caught up on some of these series and not so caught up on others, but they’re always on my must-have list. 

Tell us about yourself! Three fun facts about Dakota! 
I love stuffed animals, especially Beanie Babies and (rolls eyes) take a favorite with me when I travel to hotels to keep on my nightstand. They pack well in a suitcase. 

I like spiders and snakes. 

One of Maliha’s favorite meditation images is actually mine. I use it daily. I first had it while under the influence of a dose of medicinal cocaine in a hospital before nasal surgery, years ago. That’s medicinal. Hospital. Surgery. Are we straight? 

Thanks for stopping by! Are there any other releases or works in progress that you're excited about? 
I’m working on Mortal Path Book 4, and I also have an adventure series for middle graders that my agent is submitting. You wouldn’t guess it from the Mortal Path books, but I also love writing for children, especially the 9-12 year age range. 

Thanks, Julia! I had a great time with this interview. 

 DELIVERANCE Book Trailer!

International Giveaway!
Dakota is giving away an amazing Mortal Path Swag Bag!! 
Swag bag containing: a tote bag, three signed books, pens, bookmarks and a calculator!
Giveaway ends April 21st, 2012.

To Enter: 
Follow Dakota online at any of the links below. Leave a comment on this blog post letting us know how you follow her for your chance to win the awesome swag pack!!

Winner- ANNE!

Dakota Online:


  1. I get to be the first one to comment, since I'm working late as usual and saw this post pop into existence! Thanks for the terrific interview questions, Julia, and the chance to visit Rex Robot Reviews (RRR). I guess I should go follow my own blog now... :-) Seriously, it was soooo kind to have all those links of mine posted--I want to suggest that everyone follow RRR if you don't already!

  2. I follow everything :D
    Thank you so much for this great giveaway!! :D

  3. following by twitter and goodreads, thanks for the chance :)

  4. Thank you so much for the great interview and giveaway from Dakota Banks. I would love to read these books, they look really good.
    I follow Ms. Banks via newsletter, her blog (GFC: June M.), FB (June Manning), Twitter (@JuneAnnM), and fan & review follower on GR (June Manning)

    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

  5. I like Maliha's playlist! Very versatile. And now you have me very curious to see what her meditation image is...medicinal, yup check. =)
    Great questions for Dakota RRR!!! Very fun interview to read!

    I follow Dakota's blog through email
    eyesofblueice (at) gmail

    1. Hey! When I say medicinal, I mean it. :-)

  6. I follow on twitter acm05 and Facebook Anne M.

  7. I follow on Twitter and facebook



    dlsmilad at yahoo dot com

  8. I follow on Twitter, thank you for the awesome giveaway! edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom

  9. I follow Dakota on FB-Michelle Bledsoe

    Thanks for the contest.
    koonie2888 at yahoo dot com

  10. The Sumerian mythology is new to me and I'm interested in learning more anout it and how it plays in Deliverance. Thank you for a super great giveaway.


  11. I got into the Beanie Babie craze myself. My mother and sisters and I camped out to get new ones...still have most of them, I can't part with them!!! I follow on all of the links (but you already know that...I am your stalker after all!!) (not the dangerous, freaky weird kind though!!)

    1. Beanie Babies! We must be sisters-by-magic. :-)

  12. Thank you so much for this awesome giveaway!
    I follow via: (FB: Ileana Alvarado) Twitter:(@Gisselle_Alv)GR: (Gisele)
    Blog: (Gisele Alvarado) Fingers crossed!

  13. I Fallow through goodreads (Gabriella Lawson). Thanks for the great giveaway!

  14. Hi! Thank you for the great post and giveaway! ;) Very awesome! Id love to read your books. They sound so good!!
    Website: Newsletter Subscriber
    Blog: GFC- shadow_kohler, Linky- Shadow Kohler, Email Subscriber
    Facebook: Shadow Kohler
    Twitter: LuvToRead09
    Goodreads: Fan and Friend- Shadow Kohler

    1. I can personally assure you that my books are excellent. ;-)

  15. I follow on fb! (kate s.)
    gokarter418 (at) aol (dot) com

  16. Great interview! This looks to be an exciting read. Please include me in your giveaway. I am following on Twitter as Meecee. :)

  17. I'm loving that this is international!
    I follow Dakota on her blog (Mel S) and on Facebook (Melissa Symonds)! :-)


  18. i enjoyed the interview! i follow Dakota's blog

    catherine c

    catherine0807 at hotmail dot com

  19. This is a great giveaway! I follow her on her blog GFC- Danasquare and fb Dana Cuadrado also on GoodReads Dana Cuadrado

  20. I read the first book, Dark Time, and absolutely LOVED it! I can't wait to read the next 2 books in this series!!

    Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
    elizabeth @ bookattict . com
    Follow Dakota Banks:
    Blog: GFC & Linky: BookAttict
    Facebook: Elizabeth Kotkiewicz Hyatt
    Twitter: @BookAttict

  21. Nice interview! I gotta say, I think I shivered when I read that you like spiders and snakes. LOL I think it's cute, though, that you take a Beanie Baby with you on trips.

    I'm subscribed to Dakota's website newsletter (under the email shown below), Blog (GFC: VanillaOrchids + email), Facebook (Pam Rosensteel), Twitter (@VanillaOrchids) and Goodreads (Pamela Rosensteel).

    Thank you for the giveaway. What an amazing gift pack. Does it make me weird that I got all excited when I saw the pens. :D I love pens. LOL


    1. What, you mean you don't like spiders & snakes? They're fascinating. :-)

      I love pens. And calculators. And bookmarks. And tote bags. Come to think of it, this Swag bag has everything I like in it, with the exception of a Beanie Baby and a bag of jellybeans. Maybe next time...

  22. Great interview. That's a really interesting playlist. I follow in Twitter.

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. i followed with linky: alicia marie ezell
    thanks for the giveaway and the great interview : )

    ame1184 at gmail dot com

  25. I follow on twitter: @LynnetteFaye
    Thanks for giveaway : )

  26. I follow on the following:

    Blog donnas Donna S
    Twitter @donnas1
    Goodreads Donna S

    bachcus76 at myself dot com

  27. I follow Dakota all the ways .Ilove her books thank you for this chance to win.Have a fantastic week.
    wanda f and Goodreads
    wanda flanagan

    Twitter @lilblupixie

  28. Hi!

    I follow with Twitter (@leannessf) and on Goodreads (Leanne Goon or leannessf)!

    leannessf at gmail dot com

  29. Following Dakota via

    Blog Llehn Lesley Cheah
    Twitter @lesleywyrites
    Goodreads Donna Llehn


  30. Great interview. I love the series.
    Will be following you on twitter @ecocat


  31. Hi Dakota!! i hope i'll win this one *praying.. praying.. praying*

    i follow you by GFC (sienny), GR (sienny) and FB (sienny zne)

  32. Awesome interview and giveaway! Thanks so much! I loved this series and I can't wait for book 3 ;) I follow by Goodreads: erin f

    Have a wonderful day!

  33. Are you people following RRR too? I'll send Maliha after you if you aren't. Just kidding. Sorta.

  34. I'd love to get a chance to win this cool prize.


  35. Thanks for another nice interview :) I follow Dakota on her blog, and on Twitter. xAurianx.

  36. Great interview!
    I follow on her Blog, Twitter-@SweepingMe, FB-Mary Reiss, GR-Mary Reiss

    mary_reiss @

  37. follow on fb Marlene Breakfield

  38. great and i'm a fb follower - eli yanti, twitter follower - eli_yanti

  39. I follow everything too under Becky Johnson & @beckyhjohnson.

    Awesome giveaway thank you.

    beckyhjohnson79 [at] yahoo [dot] com [dot] au

  40. Sounds like a great read!

    FB: wendy dee
    GR: books4me
    Twitter: books4me2
    email subscriber

    books4me67 at ymail dot com

  41. Sounds like a great read
    I follow
    Twitter Pamk258
    Facebook Pam Harmon Kinsey
    newsletter subscriber.
    scrtsbpal at yahoo dot com

  42. Just fabulous thank you!!

    Follow Dakota on Blog & Goodreads: Mary Preston


  43. I follow Dakota on FB, Twitter Goodreads and thorugh her blog tour :-)

    Thank you for the fantastic and generous giveaway!

    stella.exlibris (at) gmail (dot) com

  44. This comment has been removed by the author.

  45. I follow Dakota via twitter @vbooklife :)
    Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

    Vikki @ V's Book Life

  46. Follow via Twitter and Facebook!

    Thanks for another amazing giveaway!


  47. Great interview! Thanks so much for the chance.
    I follow all the ways. Im signed up for the newsletter.
    Facebook as Natalie Cleary
    Twitter @natcleary
    Goodreads as nat cleary
    GFC as nat cleary


  48. I follow via twitter :)

    ticklebear2 at yahoo dot com

  49. *waves* I pretty much stalk Dakota. BAHAHAHAHA
    I follow her website and blog by email, on facebook as Brenda Hyde, and twitter as Moonsanity

    wayfaringwriter at gmail dot com

    I do follow RRR and have a for a long time:)

  50. I follow via Goodreads & facebook as Michelle McMichael and twitter as Mich_McMichael

    mmcmichael79(at) googlemail(dot)com

  51. I follow on goodreads - Tanja
    tanjavrljic AT gmail DOT com

  52. I follow Dakota on Twitter (@NoraAdrienne)
    I'm also on her e-mail lists also NoraAdrienne

  53. I follow Dakota everywhere!

    Blog: molly.frenzel
    Twitter: @dg_molly
    Facebook: Molly Nudo Frenzel
    Goodreads: Molly Frenzel




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