September 15, 2013

The Woken Gods Blog Tour: Guest Post

Welcome to my stop on The Woken Gods blog tour! Today I have an awesome guest post by the author to share with you!

The Woken Gods
Author: Gwenda Bond
Genre: YA Fantasy/Mythology
Release Date: September 3, 2013
Publisher: Strange Chemistry


The more things change…

Five years ago, the gods of ancient mythology awoke all around the world.

The more things stay the same…

This morning, Kyra Locke is late for school because of an argument with her father.

Seventeen-year-old Kyra lives in a transformed Washington, D.C., dominated by the embassies of divine pantheons and watched over by the mysterious Society of the Sun that governs mankind’s relations with the gods. But when rebellious Kyra encounters two trickster gods on her way home, one offering a threat and the other a warning, it turns out her life isn't what it seems. She escapes with the aid of Osborne "Oz" Spencer, a young Society field operative, only to discover that her scholar father has disappeared with a dangerous Egyptian relic. The Society needs the item back, and they aren’t interested in her protests that she knows nothing about it or her father's secrets.

Now Kyra must depend on her wits and the suspect help of scary Sumerian gods, her estranged oracle mother, and, of course, Oz--whose first allegiance is to the Society. She has no choice if she’s going to recover the missing relic and save her father. And if she doesn't? Well, that may just mean the end of the world as she knows it. From the author of Blackwood comes a fresh, thrilling urban fantasy that will appeal to fans of Neil Gaiman, Cassandra Clare, and Rick Riordan.

My thanks for the invite and being into a slightly different kind of guest post. Because THE WOKEN GODS is set in Washington, D.C., but a version that's been transformed by the gods' awakening, and particularly by the presence of the human Society of the Sun and the seven tricksters whose embassies are located there, I thought it would be fun to do a few posts spotlighting some of the real-life locales and how they changed in the book. Especially since I have lots of photos from my research trips there.

In this post, I'm going to take you a small tour of a few spots that feature prominently in the book at various times--including my favorite, the Library of Congress's Jefferson Building. Almost as soon as I decided to write a book about ancient gods in D.C., I knew I would have a no-longer-secret society and I knew I wanted them to be headquartered at the Library of Congress. (Fun fact: All the Society main offices around the world are located in libraries. They have all the knowledge, don't they?)
And, of course, no book set in D.C. would be complete without visiting the Mall and other landmarks. Without further ado, some photos, with relevant excerpts from the book...

Albert, I Love You

I reach the platform that houses the Academy's enormous bronze statue of Albert Einstein. He sits on a trio of steps, a sheaf of papers in one hand, looking a little thoughtful, a little sad. This was always the spot where Dad and I stopped to rest on runs.

 Neptune Getting Wet

We stop across the street, in front of the Library's main building. The front fountain is off, but water pools around the dark statue of Neptune. He's flanked by Tritons blowing into conch shells, calling the court of the sea. The Jefferson Building looms above us, covered in statues and busts and stone flouishes. Three arched entrances wait like dark mouths at the top of the stairs.

Jefferson Building, aka Society HQ

There had been a Society outpost here since it was built apparently, and when they announced they were taking over, that made sense. All those painted and sculpted gods everywhere, all those books full of hidden logic and forgotten knowledge. Conspiracy theorists had a field day.

In the Great Hall, a Torchbearer

Stained glass squares of blue and gold stretch high overhead. Rows of electric lights shine around windows on the upper levels. Marble stairways curve opposite one another, bronze ladies thrusting globe lights into the air at their bottoms. There's the great brass sun in the middle of the floor. I used to lay on it right before closing sometimes, Dad calling out the astrological signs marked out around me, telling me I was at the center of the universe.

In Which Our Heroine Rides a Glittery Fantastical Beast

And, finally, here's me at the Smithsonian's carousel -- if you want to know how it appears in the book, well, you'll have to read it. Thanks for letting me take you on a tour of THE WOKEN GODS D.C.!

Thanks so much for stopping by the blog and taking us on a virtual tour of D.C. Gwenda!
Gwenda Bond is the author of the young adult novels The Woken Gods and Blackwood (out now from Strange Chemistry), with Girl on a Wire coming in 2014 from Skyscape. Blackwood is currently in development as a TV series by MTV, Grammnet Productions, and Lionsgate TV. She is also a contributing writer for Publishers Weekly and regularly reviews for Locus. She has an MFA in Writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts, and lives in a hundred-year-old house in Lexington, Kentucky, with her husband, author Christopher Rowe, and their menagerie. Visit her online at or @gwenda on twitter.


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