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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

COVER REVEAL: Thorn Of The Night Blossoms by J. C. Kang

Official Author Website

Back in September, Fantasy Book Critic was generous enough for me to post not one, but two articles revealing the cover of my then-new release, Masters of Deception.

And, with the cover, I might have been a little deceptive.

No matter how amazing Amalia Chitalescu’s cover was, I wanted to hedge my bets. I had just learned about another artist, Binh Hai, and commissioned him to do another cover.

Like the Dragon Songs Saga, I had planned to run a split test in Facebook Ads to see which one would get the most clicks. Binh had way too many projects on his plate, and while he came up with an amazing sketch, the progress was too slow.

This features the half-elf Jie and the Indian paladin Sameer.

The deadline came and went. I stuck with Amalia’s cover, and haven’t looked back. However, I still had an outstanding project with Binh, and I decided to have him swap the male character to Tian, a popular male in the Dragon Songs Saga.

I hate to say it, but Binh was very slow. I didn’t get the final project until half a year after the original due date.

I had always planned to eventually do a collection of prequel short stories about these two characters, and decided this would eventually be the cover.

Then in January, I started writing what was meant to be a 5,000-word short story about Jie, ten years before the start of The Dragon Songs Saga, when she is training in an upscale red-light district. The story ballooned to 27,000 words, and became Thorn of the Night Blossoms. I asked Binh to switch the male character out for the other main character, Lilian, and switch to a nighttime background. However, I never expected him to finish on time, so I commissioned Sutthiwat Dechakamphu, who’d done work for my author buddies, Bryce O’Connor, ML Spencer, and Eric T. Knight.

This was his concept:

And the final:

But, Binh came through.

… and now I had a chance to do a Facebook ad split test. I played around with zooming in with the characters, bringing them closer, tinkering with the background.

And THIS won out:

Pre-order Thorn Of The Night Blossoms over HERE

Official Book Blurb: In the legendary Floating World, wars are waged with wit, the strongest soldier can be bound with threads of silk, and flesh is the currency by which life, death, and freedom can all be purchased.

Half-elf Jie doesn’t mind her temporary assignment as a Night Blossom in the most sought-after house. It’s perfect cover for her real work as an assassin in the emperor’s service, and keeps her close to one who matters most. Her life belongs to her clan, but her heart lies with clan junior, Lilian.

Lilian’s talents trade stealth for sensuality, poison for poetry. With looks as sharp as any blade, she can coax information from any man, and still leave him paying for the pleasure. She’s enthralled many a noble, none more important than the warlord who can calm a brewing insurrection. Only her sweet whispers can secure his obedience to the throne.

But now, his increasing abuse has Jie seeking a new assignment for Lilian—even if it means their separation. When killers target clan sisters, and the seeds of rebellion find fertile soil in the Floating World, Jie must choose between loyalty and love.



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