Joshua Palmatier — SHATTERING THE LEY


SHATTERING THE LEY Hits the Shelves!


First, I’d like to thank Magical Words for having me as a guest for the next four weeks.   I hope to bring everyone some interesting reads about plot, character, my crazy writer’s life, and of course point out that I have a NEW BOOK!  Yes, this month marks the release of SHATTERING THE LEY, the first book in a new series being published by DAW Books under my real name, Joshua Palmatier.  This first post is all about the new book, since it’s already on the shelves (with a release date of July 1st).  So let’s all get LEY-ed!  *grin*

Back in the 80s, it seemed like every fantasy novel at least mentioned the magical ley lines that connected the world, usually anchored at stone monuments, like Stonehenge and whatnot.  Back then, I vowed I would NEVER EVER write a novel involving ley lines.  *coughcough*  Well . . . I did.  But it’s not like all of those novels from the 80s.  My thought was, what if the people in this world discovered the ley lines . . . and then used them as their power source?  What if they built up a complex society where instead of using electricity or steam or coal, they tapped into the ley lines instead?  What would that society by like after a hundred years?  And from that thought, you get SHATTERING THE LEY.

It’s mostly set in the city of Erenthrall, a massive sprawling cityscape of districts with their own unique characters, all powered by the ley.  Think New York City or London, but with ley as the science . . . that’s Erenthrall.  Except of course there’s a fantasy slant to everything.  DAW is calling this a “blended” fantasy, because it has elements of science fiction in it (hence the beautiful cover art), but it is still firmly grounded in the fantasy genre.  So, that’s my setting.  I think it’s unique.  It certainly sparked my imagination, and I hope it sparks yours.  All I needed were some great characters and the story centered in Erenthrall took shape . . . but I’ll save the character discussion for a later post.

In the meantime, drool over the cover art, read the cover copy, and then try not to stumble over yourself getting your hands on the book.  I think it’s a wild ride.  Even Publisher’s Weekly thinks so!  *grin*


Cover Copy:

Erenthrall—sprawling city of light and magic, whose streets are packed with traders from a dozen lands and whose buildings and towers are grown and shaped in the space of a day.  At the heart of the city is the Nexus, the hub of the ley line system that powers Erenthrall and links the city and the Baronial plains to the rest of the continent and the world beyond.  The Prime Wielders control the Nexus with secrecy and lies, but it is the Baron who controls the Wielders and the rest of the Baronies through a web of brutal intimidation enforced by his bloodthirsty guardsmen and unnatural assassins.

When the rebel Kormanley seek to destroy the ley system and the Baron’s chokehold on the continent, two people find themselves caught in the chaos that sweeps through Erenthrall and threatens the entire world:  Kara Tremain, a young Wielder coming into her power, who discovers the forbidden truth behind the magic that powers the ley lines, and Alan Garrett, a recruit in the Baron’s guard, who learns that the city holds more mysteries and more danger than he could possibly have imagined . . . and who holds a secret within himself that could mean Erenthrall’s destruction . . . or its salvation.


Palmatier (the Throne of Amenkor trilogy) kicks off an epic fantasy series with this complex tale set in a world where wonders are accomplished by manipulating the magical energy of ley lines.  Over several years, the city of Erenthrall–home to the miraculous Nexus at the heart of the ley system–is imperiled by the abuse of ley power and the dissident priests of the Kormanley.  Caught up in the growing conflict are Kara, whose ability to manipulate the ley earns her a swift promotion through the ranks of the Wielders, and Allan, one of the ruthless Baron Arent’s enforcers.  As Erenthrall endures disruptions, blackouts, rebel uprisings, and political infighting, tension rises until catastrophe seems imminent.  Palmatier lets the story build slowly, introducing a sprawling cast and fascinating setting, before explosively upsetting the status quo.  This initial installment feels like build up for the rest of the story, but still delivers a compelling adventure.  –Publisher’s Weekly


BenTateAuthor Bio:  Joshua Palmatier is a fantasy writer with a PhD in mathematics.  His upcoming novel SHATTERING THE LEY (July 2014, DAW) is the first book in a new series, set in the same world as his “Throne of Amenkor” series.  He is also the founder of the new small press Zombies Need Brains LLC, which will focus on producing quality science-fiction and fantasy themed anthologies.  It’s first anthology release will be CLOCKWORK UNIVERSE: STEAMPUNK vs ALIENS, currently in the production phase, to be released sometime before July 2014.  Joshua has also published numerous short stories in various anthology.  Find out more at and

Social Media Info:
Joshua Palmatier:
Twitter:  @bentateauthor
Zombies Need Brains:
Online Store:
Twitter:  @ZNBLLC


6 comments to Joshua Palmatier — SHATTERING THE LEY

  • That really is beautiful art, Joshua. And congratulations on the terrific reviews your book is getting. Looking forward to reading this!

  • Razziecat

    Oh this sounds intriguing! And that is a kick-ass cover! Can’t wait to read this one! Nice to have you here, Joshua. 😀

  • TwilightHero

    Looks – and sounds – awesome. 🙂

  • Hey, David, thanks! I hope you enjoy it.

    Razziecat: I absolutely love the cover. Probably the best one yet for any of my books, except for maybe the mass market cover for WELL OF SORROWS. I think it captures the idea behind the setting of the book perfectly.

    TwilightHero: I think it is awesome, but I’m biased. Let me know what you think if you check it out!

  • Joshua, I just got my copy via Kindle. It feels as if your world and the spec fiction / SiFi that I grew up with, and a totally modern fantasy are nicely blended here. It’s hard to blend so many elements and get just that right *feel*. I’d love to see the first 3 or 4 paras next time you come here. I’ve read them they are so perfect for the genre. I wonder if we can make that happen?

    I think this cover rocks, and I am looking forward to reading. 🙂

  • Faith: Hmm, I believe we can get the first 3 or 4 paragraphs in there for the next installment. I’ll email you. And yeah, the first chapter I wrote of this book (which happens to actually be in the middle of the book) was basically an experiment to see if I could capture the feel for the city and the character Kara that I wanted.