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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Muffins & Zombies ~ Dead Reckoning Blog Tour

Today I'm very happy to share with you some zombies and muffins, some zombie-muffins, maybe... or just a really great guest post from Rosemary Edghill and Mercedes Lackey, authors of Dead Reckoning (which you may recall I gave a HELLS YEAH I want to read this in a recent Coming Attractions post...)
This one is still firmly entrenched on my wishlist - maybe even more so after some of the buzz words in this guest post (zombie horde. bacon. Auto-Tachypode...)
But I'll let Rosemary and Mercedes convince you ~

Why [Not] Muffins (from Rosemary)
Cuisine of the Western Frontier. What did Jett and Gibbons eat? How did they cook it? {Okay, the original topic suggested was “muffins”. This is really the “why NOT muffins”? post….}

In a fantasy novel, you can rely on convenient inns. In an SF novel, you can reply on high-level food storage and preservation technology. In a lot of historicals, you can rely on the fact the action takes place in a city. In the “wild” West of 1867….

You’d better like beans.

There was a LOT of West, and most of it was (to Anglo and Colonial eyes) empty and unsettled, as well as being pretty much desert. If you wanted to eat, you’d better bring dinner with you. But oh noes! Food preservation techniques are still in their infancy, and they really haven’t figured out that whole “botulism” thing yet. There’s also the matter of how much it all weighs. In DEAD RECKONING, Gibbons travels with a kettle, a griddle, and sacks of flour and beans in her Auto-Tachypode. Jett, on the other hand, travels with coffee, corn meal, and a fletch of bacon in her saddlebags. Coffee, biscuits (or tortillas), bacon, and beans were the menu the west was won on: portable, durable, palatable, and mobile. On a cattle drive (where the menu was naturally supplemented by beef and surprisingly by doughnuts) or in a bunkhouse, the menu was nearly the same. Milk came from cans (there were few milk cows on the frontier), and so did fruits and vegetables (peaches and tomatoes were the earliest items to be successfully canned). It wouldn’t be until the Transcontinental Railroad linked San Francisco and Boston XX years later (in 18XX) that the Western menu -- as well as the West itself -- would really open up.

As a history geek, how people lived in the past and why they lived that way fascinates me. But of course, you may be here for the zombies….

Why Zombies? (from Mercedes)
Actually I don’t really care for zombies as portrayed in the movies all that much. Mindless rotting evil just doesn’t appeal that much to me—I’m not alone, it seems that most women prefer their horror to come in the form of vampires, while most men prefer zombies. So it was kind of out of character for me to write a book where zombies are the main menace.

But when Rosemary and I were looking at various possibilities for our Threat, we decided early on we wanted to do something with classic movie monsters, and zombies in the Old West seemed like an unlikely (and thus interesting) mix. The problem with doing the other classic movie monsters—the vampire, the werewolf, and so forth—is that you by necessity have some of the focus taken off your heroes and put on your villain, and we wanted all the focus to be on Jett, Gibbons, and White Fox since this was (we hoped) going to be the first book of a series. But with a zombie horde, your villain is faceless and without a personality, so you can put all of the emphasis on the good guys.

Additionally, Jett would have an advantage in recognizing and combating zombies that she wouldn’t have with any other supernatural villain—being born and raised around New Orleans, she would be very familiar with voodoo and voodoo traditions. So we could pretty much cut to the chase and get to the action without having our heroes spend a lot of time scratching their heads and trying to figure out what was going on.

Which, when you are dealing with a zombie horde, is pretty important!

Zombies and Muffins. Need I say more?
Make sure you go ENTER TO WIN a copy of Dead Reckoning!! (Ends 6/27)

Dead Reckoning by Rosemary Edghill and Mercedes Lackey
In Stores Now!
Amazon | Goodreads
336 pages
Published June 5th 2012 by Bloomsbury USA
Jett is a girl disguised as a boy, living as a gambler in the old West as she searches for her long-lost brother. Honoria Gibbons is a smart, self-sufficient young woman who also happens to be a fabulous inventor. Both young women travel the prairie alone – until they are brought together by a zombie invasion! As Jett and Honoria investigate, they soon learn that these zombies aren’t rising from the dead of their own accord … but who would want an undead army? And why? This gunslinging, hair-raising, zombie western mashup is perfect for fans of Cowboys vs. Aliens and Pride & Prejudice & Zombies.


  1. Doesn't Jett at one point say something about being SICK OF BACON?! Because that right there is a travesty. And proof that if I ever time travel, the old west will hopefully not be my destination (especially since I really dislike beans).

    I actually loved that the zombies in Dead Reckoning were more of the traditional voodoo variety, and less like the Night of the Living Dead and onward popular view of zombies. It was different, but oldschool at the same time!

    Love the post ladies!

  2. I appreciate a good old school zombie take, too! Can't wait to read this one myself. :)


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