April 16, 2021

The Helm of Midnight Blog Tour: Excerpt + Giveaway

The Helm of Midnight
Author: Marina Lostetter
Release Date: April 13, 2021
Publisher : Tor Books; 1st edition
Language : English


A legendary serial killer stalks the streets of a fantastical city in The Helm of Midnight, the stunning first novel in a new trilogy from acclaimed author Marina Lostetter.

In a daring and deadly heist, thieves have made away with an artifact of terrible power--the death mask of Louis Charbon. Made by a master craftsman, it is imbued with the spirit of a monster from history, a serial murderer who terrorized the city with a series of gruesome murders.

Now Charbon is loose once more, killing from beyond the grave. But these murders are different from before, not simply random but the work of a deliberate mind probing for answers to a sinister question.

It is up to Krona Hirvath and her fellow Regulators to enter the mind of madness to stop this insatiable killer while facing the terrible truths left in his wake. 


"The Helm of Midnight transports readers to an intensely unique and creative world, with interwoven secrets and heart-pounding action. Bloody, ambitious, and absolutely riveting." ―Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter

"A mysterious and mind-ripping journey through the mystic depths of time and the darkness of the human psyche." ―Matt Wallace, author of the Sin du Jour and Savage Rebellion series

"Beautiful and vicious, The Helm of Midnight will snare you with its intriguing mystery and then enthrall you with its rich characters and inventive world." ―Megan E. O'Keefe, author of Velocity Weapon

You can purchase The Helm of Midnight at the following Retailers:
Melanie and Leiwood returned to the inn with sacks of minerals, chemicals, and dried herbs. As they walked, Leiwood seemed to drag his feet, which she found galling. Her impatience from earlier was restored posthaste.

Was he trying to exasperate her? Did he not see how important it was to restore the

equilibrium? The asymmetry fed on her nerves, tore at her muscles, weighed heavy in her chest. There was a struggle going on in every fiber of her body, demanding she cure the problem.

An image of a dead cat and a weeping, disheveled girl came to her mind, unbidden. It frightened her, and she vehemently shooed it away.

Back at the inn, Melanie didn’t want to wake her mother, so they went to Leiwood’s room instead. “Mortar, pestle,” she demanded, snapping her fingers at him. Obediently, he drew the tools from one of the bags. While she worked, he set out the rest of the gear: a small burner, some test tubes, a beaker, and the syringe.

Into the crucible went sulfur, calcium, and dried reishi mushrooms. She topped it off with a liquid catalyst that glowed an eerie, subtle green. “It has to rest for several hours,” she declared after thoroughly mixing the substances. “This cure demands time.”

Leiwood sat on his bed, giving her a sideways look. He’d been staring at her strangely since they’d gone out to get the ingredients. It worried her. Annoyed her. Disturbed her.

Just like his father, she thought harshly. Brutal man...killed my daughter’s cat.

Melanie pulled up short, confused by the thought—she wasn’t a mother. Within an instant, that confusion turned to fear as she tried to tell Leiwood about her wayward thoughts, tried to ask him if that was how it started—if this was, in actuality, what he’d meant.

Her lips parted, but her throat closed. She was shoved down in her own body, pushed, compressed, torn away from her own hands, her own voice. Something else was taking control.

She watched herself wander over to the fireplace and look deep into the red coals. “They say I’m a great healer,” her voice said.

No, no, no. This wasn’t happening—couldn’t be. It was a Magnitude Zero mask. Magnitude Zero. Third Tier. Harmless, useful. A healer’s mask.

Leiwood’s answer came tentatively. “Master Belladino was, yes.”

“I could cure any ailment,” her voice continued. “Save the dead from dying.”


My unfinished work. The thoughts weren’t her own, but they filled her brain, pushed out whatever she might be thinking. She was on the verge of panic, except her body didn’t think so. While her mind reeled, her body remained calm. She struggled with it—with him? With Belladino?—but their thoughts were sticky, mixing, intertwining. She didn’t know where the echo of this man’s life ended and where she began. I died before I could finish my work.

Copyright © 2021 by Marina Lostetter

Photo Credit: Jeff Nelson

The open skies and dense forests of the Pacific Northwest are ideal for growing speculative fiction authors–or, at least, Marina Lostetter would like to think so. Originally from Oregon, she now resides in Arkansas with her spouse, Alex. In her spare time she enjoys globetrotting, board games, and all things art-related. Her original short fiction has appeared in venues such as Lightspeed, Uncanny, and Shimmer Magazine. Her debut novel, NOUMENON, and its sequels, NOUMENON INFINITY and NOUMENON ULTRA, are available from Harper Voyager. Her first fantasy novel, THE HELM OF MIDNIGHT, is forthcoming from Tor. In addition, she has written tie-in materials for Star Citizen and the Aliens franchise. She is represented by DongWon Song of the Howard Morhaim Literary Agency, and she tweets as @MarinaLostetter.

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