November 15, 2012

Meet Dylan Kennedy Blog Tour – Interview with author, Shea Berkley and G!veaway


Welcome to our stop for the Meet Dylan Kennedy Blog Tour

presented by Entangled Publishing for:

The Marked Son (Keepers of Life #1) by Shea Berkley!

We are so thrilled to have Shea stop by the blog and share with us
some of her Top Favorite things, and we share with you our
thoughts on The Marked Son!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post thanks to
the generous people over at Entangled Publishing.

Now…let’s take a look at
The Marked Son (Keepers of Life #1) by Shea Berkley
and meet Dylan Kennedy

Seventeen-year-old Dylan Kennedy always knew something was different about him, but until his mother abandoned him in the middle of Oregon with grandparents he’s never met, he had no idea what.When Dylan sees a girl in white in the woods behind his grandparents’ farm, he knows he’s seen her before…in his dreams. He’s felt her fear. Heard her insistence that only he can save her world from an evil lord who uses magic and fear to feed his greed for power.Unable to shake the unearthly pull to Kera, Dylan takes her hand. Either he’s completely insane or he’s about to have the adventure of his life, because where they’re going is full of creatures he’s only read about in horror stories. Worse, the human blood in his veins has Dylan marked for death…

The Marked Son (Keepers of Life #1) by Shea Berkley
Publication Date:  August 2, 2011
Publisher:  Entangled Publishing

I couldn’t find a trailer, so here’s a song.  Enjoy!
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** This title was provided to us by the Publisher for an honest review.
We were in no way paid for our opinions **

When it came to The Marked Son, the first novel in the Keepers of Life series, by author Shea Berkley, I had absolutely no idea what to expect.  I went into the novel with my eyes shut, but lately on Goodreads and on the net I have been finding a lot of reviews that have raised hype for the story.  I was excited to begin reading and from the quick pace the prologue at the start of the novel I was prepared for about two things:

Romance and a mind-blowing fantasy world.

The story revolves around both Dylan Kennedy and the mysterious Kera.  The two characters’ fates intertwine when it’s revealed that Dylan and Kera have been having dreams about each other since they were children.  Dylan has grown up in our world, Kera has grown up in an alternate dimension where things are basically World of Warcraft.  But in that alternate world, Kera’s people are ruled by a tyrant lord who uses his strong magic and his wicked ways to cure his lust for power.  So when Dylan’s deadbeat mother drops him off in the middle of nowhere with grandparents he didn’t know he had, the last thing he expected was to see Kera in a spectral form in the woods.

Quickly, Dylan learns that his mother might have been right when she said that there was something different about Dylan; Something so different that he might not be fully human and something so different that he might belong in Kera’s world after all.  Plus he and Kera are falling in love, but hey, who didn’t secretly see that coming?

The first thing I think that got to my emotions with the Marked Son is the relationship between Dylan and his mother.  Dylan seems to act (and think) like a teenage boy, but his mother seems to regret his existence and blames him for having the same DNA as whoever his father is.   With the brief few chapters we get to see her in, she doesn’t seem to care all that much for Dylan and while he constantly states in the novel that she doesn’t matter much to him, I liked to think that secretly he wished she cared for him and that just broke my heart.

Relationships aside, I’ve gotta admit that at the start of the novel, I was looking forward to getting to see more of Dylan’s perspective on Kera.  Considering how the novel switches between Dylan’s POV and Kera’s POV (point of view), I was excited to see just what Dylan would think of Kera’s world especially since Kera’s world is (like I said before) World of Warcraft.  That’s just freaking awesome.   When Dylan does finally encounter Kera’s world and comes to terms with the fact that he is only half human, the story is nothing but fast paced with killer action scenes straight out of Underworld.

I’ve gotta admit though that my favorite character within the whole novel was Kera, she held a total aura of badassery.  In her world, women aren’t supposed to be soldiers, but Kera still fights like one even when she’s supposed to marry the tyrant Lord and still holds feelings for Dylan.  The romance between Dylan and Kera was pretty cute, I think, because Dylan constantly comes off as this total love ‘em and leave ‘em type character, but becomes instantly hung up on Kera.  Which, you know, makes him go a bit insane whenever she’s in danger, I found that awesome.

All in all, a pretty fun read.  I’d recommend The Marked Son to fans of fantasy, readers who want a supernatural story with action, and those of us who just want some good old exciting romance.

Top Fav’s with Shea Berkley

You’re home alone, there’s a fire!  Top 3 things you’d grab and save from the fire.

This is going to sound odd, but I don’t put much store in things. I’m not a collector at all. Just so long my family is safe, I’m good. If you press me I might grab some pictures of my fallen angels when they were really small and totally adorable, and my thumb drive and portable hard drive, but honestly, I doubt I’d do that.


Top 3 Favorite authors (dead or alive) and why:

I protest this question. Seriously, how am I supposed to choose from all those amazing authors? Grrr. Let me think. Okay, I’ve narrowed them down, but I’m still not happy about this question.

  1. Dean Koontz—he makes me smile, and then scares the poop out of me.
  2. Jane Austen—she makes me play what if and wish Darcy was real.
  3. Shakespeare—he makes me sigh… and dream… and then sigh again.

You can totally tell I was a geeky English major with the last two answers. 


Top 3 Favorite snacks while writing and why:

Only three? You’re barbaric to suggest I should limit myself to three. What kind of twisted world do you live in? I’m hyperventilating. (breathe in, breathe out) Wow, okay, here I go…

  1. Toblerone—it’s like love in a triangular bar! Melt it and you can dip fruit in it or just nibble away until it’s gone. Makes me soooo happy.
  2. Black Forest Gummy Bears—I can bite their heads off and they don’t care. Don’t judge me.
  3. Peanut M&Ms—‘cause when people ask it I’ve eaten that day, I can honestly say I had some protein. True story.


Top 3 Favorite books that inspired you to write and why:

I’ve been writing since I was little so there wasn’t one book that really influenced me. How about I give you three writers I wish I could write like?

  1. Suzanne Collins. Who wouldn’t want to write like her?
  2. Judy Blume. I think she has a sixteen–year-old girl living inside her.
  3. Patrick Rothfuss. He’s got the fantasy-novel-writing gig locked down tight.


Top 3 favorite songs to listen to while writing and why:

Uh –oh. I don’t listen to music when I write, well, not on a consistent basis. Actually hardly ever. Figures I’m doing it wrong. If I did listen to something on a consistent basis, it would have to be instrumental music, like soundtracks because I’d probably start writing out the lyrics instead of really writing, which would be interesting for my editor. How about I give you my favorite soundtracks instead?

  1. Gladiator. No shock there. It’s my favorite movie too.
  2. Pride and Prejudice. Transportive music.
  3. Star Trek. Chris Pine. Yeah, he’s got nothing to do with the music, but he’s pretty.

Top 3 favorite techniques to overcome writers block and why:

  1. Just write. Doesn’t matter what it is, just write.
  2. Make a list of the top twenty things that could happen next and usually within that list there’s something I can use. If not I’m totally screwed until I Call Robin Perini and we hash the crap out of my story and find out where I took a wrong turn or if I’m forcing my characters to do something they wouldn’t or if I just need a nap.
  3. Do something else that’s creative or that lets your imagination go. It can be anything from painting to watching a movie to reading or running or making out with your sweetheart. Just have some fun and live life!


Top 3 musicians/bands/groups and why:

This is a problem because I tend to like songs more than I like bands., so yeah, this question bites monkey bottoms. I like a lot of different kinds of music from Eminem and Kanye West to Joe Bonamassa and NEEDTOBREATHE. I’ll to limit myself, but I’m not good at that exercise.

  1. Flogging Molly—if you have to ask, you’ve never heard them. They’re rough and wild and a good time and you can dance like an idiot and no one will care.
  2. Maroon 5—‘cause I’ve  got the Moves Like Jagger, but it’s Harder to Breathe when I do which makes me Sad , so when I Come Away from the Water it’s only then I realilze I have One More Night! (Yep them’s my favorite Maroon 5 songs put into a nice little sentence for your entertainment.) Actually, I don’t have a clue why I like Maroon 5 so much, but I do.
  3. Elenowen—they’re a folksy kind of band. I just love their tight harmony and lyrics.


Top 3 favorite movies of all time and why:

You are seriously killing me with this only 3 thing. Argh! May the faery of don’t limit me visit you tonight and show you your present, past and future.

  1. Gladiator!!!—it’s the perfect movie.(I love you Ridley Scott) I kid you not! Every time I see it I find something new to love about it.
  2. The Quiet Man—I adore John Wayne, and when you put the Duke with Maureen O’Hara you get pure cinematic gold!
  3. Easy A—makes me laugh every time, but then so does Just Friends. Oops, does that count as four? Not when it’s in a sentence associated with the answer. English is awesome like that.

Top 3 favorite animated movies and why:

  1. Sleeping Beauty—Philip is the best prince ever! He fought a dragon for Aurora. Did any of the other dudes even come close to doing something so bombdiggity? I think not!
  2. How to Train your Dragon—what a brave kid to stand up to his whole village and do what he knows is right. Love that about Hiccup, and Gerard Butler is awesome in that movie. So is Craig Ferguson.
  3. The Emperor’s New Groove—In my opinion, this is a highly underrated movie. Eartha Kitt’s Yzma cracks me up every time, and no one plays a self-absorbed emperor like David Spade.


Top 3 favorite movie moments and why:
(click the title to links to YouTube) 

  1. Princess Bride—During the sword fight between Westley and Inigo, but honestly there are so many moments… it’s a crazy quotable movie.
  2. The Patriot—when Benjamin Martin’s two young sons see their father brutally kill the enemy. It’s a powerful scene that made me gasp because in that moment, you knew those boys’ lives have changed irreversibly. I don’t care what people say, Mel Gibson may have problems, but he’s an amazing actor. I almost put down Braveheart for the fight scenes. They’re amazing and it’s because of Mel that they turned out so well.
  3. The Gladiator—there are so many scenes that I love in this movie, from the opening scene where he quietly prepares himself for battle to when he is barely alive and somehow finds the mental strength to deliver Rome back to the people. (I love you Ridley Scott) The scene that always makes me sit up and take notice is the one where he escapes his death sentence and races to find his family. It shows how wicked good he is at what he does and that he has eyes only for his family. Now that’s a man.

Top 3 favorite actors/actresses and why:

This is kinda like music to me. I love movies, but I’m not really enamoured with any one particular actor or actress, but I’ll give it a shot.

  1. Robert Downey Jr.—He’s brilliant. Really. I’d hang out with him.
  2. Sandra Bullock—I think she’s cool. I’d hang out with her.
  3. Emma Stone—The girl can act! And she’s freakin’ adorable.

Top 3 favorite gadgets and why:

  1. Electric mixer. I’m a baker. Have you ever had to whisk heavy cream into whipped cream by hand? I have. Not fun.
  2. Hair dryer. I have long hair and it takes forever to dry without a hair dryer.
  3. iPhone. It’s like a party that fits in your palm. There are games and friends and the whole world waiting to say “hi” with the push of a button.

Top 3 favorite dream destinations and why:

  1. Ireland—The people. The music. The views.
  2. New Zealand—I wanna see Middle Earth!
  3. Italy—Purely for the food, baby.


Thank you Shea!  Your answers seriously made me chuckle!
You rock!

 About the Author:

I’m an author of YA fantasy novels, which means I’m the luckiest person alive ’cause I get to spend my day playing with my characters. Some are totally cool, others aren’t so nice, but they all bring something to the party.

Connect with the author:  Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads

Available for Purchase:
 /  /  / 

Complete the form below for a chance to win an e-book of:

The Marked Son (Keepers of Life #1) by Shea Berkley!

This giveaway is open Internationally.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Natalie Cleary

    Great interview!! I love Toblerone and The Gladiator movie too!! Russel Crowe is just amazing in it!! Im Irish and naturally I love it here too :)

  2. Shea Berkley

    Hey Natalie!

    So like, if I come to Ireland and just so happen to mysteriously find you, you’ll put me up for the night or two or eight? (giggle) Don’t worry, I’m crap with google maps. I’d never find you, but I would love to visit Ireland. I raised my fallen angels on the Chieftains and Riverdance. No lie.

  3. Danielle Smiley

    This may be the very best interview I’ve ever read!!! It was really entertaining. I’m all the more excited to read the book now that I’ve gotten a sense of the the authors writing style by her answers. She gets extra props for love of Gladiator and Robert Downey Jr (yum!)

    Thanks for the great giveaway!

  4. Shea Berkley

    Hey Danielle!

    I’m tickled you enjoyed the interview. Gabby had some awesome questions in there. So fun to answer. And I’m not joking about my adoration of Ridley Scott and The Gladiator in specific. In my opinion, it’s the perfect movie. It’s got something for everyone (okay, everyone over the age of 17 since it’s R rated).

  5. OMG I LOVE Easy A!! Like will watch it every time I see it on. Has so many smile moments. Pocket Full of Sunshine still gets stuck in my head when I think of the movie lol Great interview, so much fun :)

  6. Shea Berkley

    “I got a pocketful… I got a pocket… I got a pocket…” (giggle, snort) It is a catchy tune made even more awesome by Easy A. Thanks for dropping by and saying Hi, Tiff!

  7. Erica Pillera

    You had me at toblerone. Love the cover.
    Great interview.
    Im gonna use the protein line for the M&Ms

  8. Shea Berkley

    Hey Erica! The great thing about M&Ms is they really are a legit meal covered in chocolate, which is a girl’s dream come true!!! (okay, it’s my dream come true)

  9. Grace Lo

    Oh, my gosh. I love this interview! It. Is. Pure. Epic. And it makes Shea sound super personable. (If you’re reading this Shea, my dream destination(s) also includes Italy because of the food as well.)
    And Robert Downey Jr. is the epitome of awesome. Just saying.

  10. Shea Berkley

    Hey Grace! I’m totally reading you’re post! Like right now!! (grin) I also love Scotland, but for the kilt factor, not the food.

  11. brooke

    Looks awesome!

  12. Shea Berkley

    Hey Brooke! Hopefully it is! I really tried hard to make the story more than just another pretty face, although the cover model is very nice to stare at for long periods of time.

  13. Cordelia

    I can’t wait to read this!!!! Wow!

  14. Shea Berkley

    Hey Cordelia! (I always think of the show Angel when I see your name. You’re probably over that, huh?) Anyway, I hope (cross my fingers and toes) that you love the story as much as I loved writing it!

  15. Denise Z

    Thank you so much for taking the time to share with us. I also love Sandra Bullock, she just seems like she would be fun :)

  16. Shea Berkley

    Hey Denise! I love meeting new people, so this was really fun! I’m just glad you all stopped by to say hi. It’s rather lonely otherwise. I do think Sandra Bullock is as nice as she appears. She has a great rep. I am afraid I might be a tad too pubescent. Saying poop still makes me giggle.

  17. Jolene A

    Great interview, so much fun! Can’t wait to read your book, sounds amazing!

  18. Shea Berkley

    Hey Jolene! I hope you pick up a copy. I love hearing what people think… unless you tell me it’s crap on a stick, then that’s not too fun. (grin) But I’m fairly confident it’s not, unless people are lying to me. How weird would that be?

  19. i love this book

  20. Shea Berkley

    Hey Roro! And I love you for loving my book! I see a big hug in our future. I’m kinda overly affectionate like that. It’s pointless to run. I’ll find you. (grin)

  21. Ellen Levickis

    Sounds good! Thank you for taking the time to present this book.

  22. Shea Berkley

    Hey Ellen! Thanks for dropping by!

  23. sherry fundin

    Very nice interview. Thanks for the giveaway.

  24. Kelly

    I don’t get to read too many male POV’s. This looks good! I have Ireland and New Zealand on my top 3 dream destinations too!!

  25. Anne C

    I can’t live without a hair dryer either! Lol!

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