August 27, 2014

Blog Tour Review + Interview: Eternal Night by Carina Adly MacKenzie

And I'm back with another Paper Lantern Lit blog tour (two days in a row - but there won't be a third, much to my dismay). This time I'm here to try and tell you why ETERNAL NIGHT is one of the most addicting bits of fiction I've read in a long while.

But before I do that, here's a quick description of this delightfully dark paranormal tale...

Title: Eternal Night
Author: Carina Adly MacKenzie
Release Date: August 26th, 2014
Publisher: The Studio, a Paper Lantern Lit imprint
Page Count: 319
Source: eARC from The Studio by Paper Lantern Lit
(I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest
review. No favors were exchanged, my opinions are my own.)

First Reaction: Please may I have some more of this delicious, addicting book? Please?

Barnes & Noble | Amazon | iBooks 
Six young gods are hiding in plain sight among mortals, living secretly in cities across the world. From lavish penthouse soirees to pulsing underground clubs, for them, the party literally never ends. Until now.

On a hot June morning, the body of a beautiful girl is found floating in the rooftop pool of the Jefferson Hotel, her white-ink tattoos revealing the story of a life much longer than seems possible. Only the immortals know the truth: Nadia was the goddess of hope. Now she’s gone, and the world as they know it is ending. The Hudson River has turned blood red. Storms rage overhead. Mania is rapidly spreading across the globe.

It is up to the remaining gods—Lola, Dean, Weston, Mark, Nike and Peitha—to put aside centuries of betrayal and heartbreak, and stop the mysterious source of darkness that is taking over… before the sun sets forever.

Carina Adly MacKenzie, writer for The CW's hit series "The Originals," has penned a steamy, romantic, and ultimately redemptive story of forgotten gods, the persistence of hope, and the power of love to save us.


Told from six different points of view (six gods, one point of view for each), ETERNAL NIGHT tells the story of what happens when the shadows rise up in an attempt to undo the light's victory.

Dean, Weston, Mark, Nike, Lola and Peitha are gods living among men. The lack of faith has taken their power from them but their immortality remains, allowing them to reinvent themselves every few years and live forever. But living together isn't as easy as it seems. Peitha's run off to Vegas and the other five remaining in New York City barely speak. But when one of their own, Nadia, is killed and plagues start cropping up around both NYC and the rest of the world, the six know they have to put their heads together to stop the world from ending.

This book is interesting for a lot of reasons, but my favorite reason is the way all of the gods mentioned come from different mythology. Norse, Greek, Egyptian, Roman... all are included. It's a very different take than I've seen in most of YA and I like it from a religious studies stand point. While all of these traditions are distinctive and separate, ETERNAL NIGHT highlights how similar ideals presented themselves in the different major societies. And since people no longer believe in the gods, causing the gods in this book to lose their powers, even more interesting points are being made. I definitely dig the depth here.

But ETERNAL NIGHT isn't all about depth. It's also about action. The gods are trying to stop whoever's summoning these plagues and keep them from ending everything and they only have a few days to do it. They're also busy dealing with their internal squabbling while simultaneously trying to keep the world from ending. I mean, this guy's not talking to that guy, she's run away from him, they're pretending everything is okay between them... It's typical drama but with years more background and complexity, given the immortality.

And then there's the romance. While there's an obvious way the puzzle pieces can fit together, this book keeps you guessing by throwing mortals into the mix, inserting LGBT relationships and asking more philosophical and psychological questions than one might not think to find in a YA paranormal romance.

However, none of these things are what make this story so addicting (although they definitely help). My underlying obsession with ETERNAL NIGHT is because it reads like a CW show. (This makes sense because Carina Adly MacKenzie writes for the CW.) And, let's be real, I either go all in or not at all with my CW shows. I kept picturing ETERNAL NIGHT in a setting similar to Arrow - dark and set in a corrupted town with explosions and disaster at every turn. And some steamy kissing and drama thrown in for added goodness. Basically, if ETERNAL NIGHT got turned into a TV show/mini-series thing, I'd watch it so fast and it's all I'd talk about for days.

Bottom line: 
This paranormal debut is exactly what I wanted. It's fast-paced, dramatic, swoony, gripping, thought-provoking and everything else I didn't even know I could have from a paranormal romance but will expect from now on. Carina Adly MacKenzie has set a bar for me and I can't wait to see what she writes next. (Side Note: I'd watch The Originals, but I haven't watched The Vampire Diaries, but winter is long and it is coming, so who knows?)

But enough about me and my thoughts on ETERNAL NIGHT, let's hear from the author herself!

Working with PLL

"I had the best experience working with Paper Lantern Lit on this first book. I’ll admit – it wasn’t easy to write a complicated, mythology-driven book while working on a complicated, mythology-driven TV show. I only worked on Eternal Night on weekends, and sometimes it was hard to stay motivated, but Lexa, Rhoda, and Lauren at PLL kept me on track.

When I first signed on to work with PLL, I was worried that it would feel like Eternal Night was their book, and I was just writing it according to what they thought would sell. That wasn’t the case at all. The book has changed in a million ways over the course of writing it – characters have evolved, flashbacks have come and gone, and the ending has evolved. A week before my first draft was due, I threw out the last 100 pages and completely restructured the ending, rewriting those hundred pages in two days while I was visiting family in Australia. And everyone at PLL was really encouraging and understanding as we adjusted to the new story.

As with any collaborative endeavor, there were definitely disagreements over the course of the writing… the book is sort of a fusion of battles won and lost, but having to justify all the beats to an editor and defend my pitches made the book better. I think it also made me a better TV writer, because defending your pitches to the people who make decisions is hurdle number one in a writer’s room."

Carina Adly MacKenzie grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut, where she boldly defied the no-reading-at-the-dinner-table rule time and time again. After studying English at the University of Colorado at Boulder, Carina moved to Los Angeles to pursue a writing career. Carina was a television critic and entertainment reporter for, the Los Angeles Times, and Teen Vogue, among other publications. Currently, she spends her days obsessing over vampire sibling rivalry as a writer for The CW's new drama, "The Originals." She loves coffee, Twitter, and her little dog Pacey. Eternal Night is her first novel.

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So now everyone who loves excellent paranormal romance, please go download this ebook ASAP - kay, leave questions in the comments below, thanks, talk soon!