Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Toru Blog Tour! (+$50 Amazon GC Giveaway!)

Title: Toru -Wayfarer Returns
Series: Sakura Steam #1
Pages: 274
Date Published: 2015
Publisher: Palantir Press
Format: Kindle
Genre: Steampunk
Source: Goddess Fish Blog Tours

A nation encircled by enemies. A noblewoman with everything to lose. A fisherman with everything to prove and a nation to save.

In Japan of 1852, the peace imposed by the Tokugawa Shoguns has lasted 250 years. Peace has turned to stagnation, however, as commoners grow impoverished and their lords restless. Swords rust. Martial values decay. Foreign barbarians circle the island nation’s closed borders like vultures.

Tōru, a shipwrecked young fisherman rescued by traders and taken to America, defies the Shogun’s ban on returning to Japan, determined to save his homeland from foreign invasion. Can he rouse his countrymen in time? Or will the cruel Shogun carry out his vow to execute all who set foot in Japan after traveling abroad? Armed only with his will, a few books, dirigible plans and dangerous ideas, Tōru must transform the Emperor’s realm before the Black Ships come.
~Try an Excerpt!~
“Omae wa dare da? Who are you? Whose ship is that? Why are you here?”
They forced Tōru to his knees.
He bowed down to the sand and spoke in the rough unhewn Japanese of a fisherman.
“Noble sirs, I am Tōru, of the village Iwamatsu, some days’ travel north of here. I was fishing with my father. A terrible storm destroyed our boat and cast us all into the sea. My father gave me a piece of wreckage to cling to as everything sank.”
Tōru struggled a moment, the words and flow of his native language catching on his lips after more than two years without a soul to speak with in Japanese. The memory of the storm and his last memory of his father that night rose up before him.
He steadied himself as the men listened intently, their swords never wavering from his throat, nor their gaze from his face.
He chose his next words carefully.
“That night was the last I saw my father. I was picked up by an American ship and taken to America.”
He bowed down to the sand again, easing between the blades.
“This night I am returning, to look after my mother. She has no other child to care for her, and no husband to feed her. The Americans brought me home, so I might do my duty by my mother and my people. I beg you, forgive me any crimes I may have committed by landing on your lord’s shore, and allow me please to return to my home.”
As he looked up into their eyes, he saw they would permit no such thing.
~Meet Stephanie!~ 
Stephanie is a writer based in the Victorian mining town of Leadville, Colorado, where she lives at 10,251 feet with her husband, five chickens, two bantam English game hens and one Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. After a former life in big cities-New York City, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Boston, Mexico City, Atlanta, Los Angeles and Santa Fe-she now enjoys the birdsong and quiet writing time she finds in Leadville. Her first novel draws on her experience living and working in Japan; her next historical novel is set in Mexico where she also lived for several years. As a Leadville local, she likes her Victorian attire spiced with a little neo-Victorian futurism and the biggest bustle possible.
 Stephanie will be awarding a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.


  1. Congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win :)

  2. Welcome to my blog Stephanie! I'm pumped to have you here! I love seeing Asian influences on Steampunk, as that seems like such an underappreciated culture in the genre!

  3. Hi Andra Lyn, thank you so much for hosting and making me feel comfortable on this first ever book tour!

    Yes, we Asian-setting Steampunk authors are a rare breed. In addition to my own humble offering, I would recommend to your readers interested in Asian Steampunk Ken Liu's "The Grace of Kings" trilogy (he calls it "Silkpunk"--vaguely Chinese world, dirigibles, palace intrigue, all good stuff) and Jeannie Lin's Gunpowder Alchemy/Clockwork Samurai books. Ken Liu is one of my favorite science fiction writers (and translators--check him out translating "The Three Body Problem" by Cixiu Liu, China's most beloved current science fiction author). Jeannie Lin made her name in historical romances set in China, and she's a lovely writer as well.

    I would love to see readers getting out of their comfort zones and checking out a bigger, more varied world! Phoebe Darqueeling, in her Steampunk focused-blog, talks about this issue of genre boundaries in her review of "Toru: Wayfarer Returns."
    If Steampunk is new to you, you might like checking out her blog as well--she knows all things Steampunk!

    Thanks again for hosting!


    1. Well you've definitely filled up my TBR Pile! Thanks for all the recommendations! I need to get back to my steampunk roots! I used to host a month-long steampunk got to be a lot of work so I stopped, but I miss my gearheads!

  4. I do need to read more steampunk!


  5. Thank you for hosting the giveaway. This looks like an interesting read. I hope that I win. Bernie W BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

  6. It's been a long time since I read a book with a Shogun. Love the location & time period.

  7. Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!

  8. Congratulations on your new book! My son and daughter are big steampunk fans.

  9. Joseph, I run Amazon giveaways (digital) and Goodreads giveaways (paperback) almost every month. Follow my publisher Twitter @SassaMargot and/or my Goodreads author page for notice of the next ones. I hope you win one. :-)

  10. Hey everyone,

    Just wanted to let you know I'm putting "Toru" on a $0.99 price promotion through the end of my book tour, so pop over to Amazon and snag your copy now. I am working on getting the price dropped on Nook, Kobo and iBooks as well. I hope you'll read it, and if you like it, post a review!