On Tour with Prism Book Tours
The Genesis of Seven
(The Empyrean Trilogy, #1)
By Sara M. Schaller
YA Fantasy, Paranormal
Hardcover, Paperback & ebook, 348 Pages
July 7, 2020 by Designs by Seraphim
Eighteen-year-old Jordan Conway has always wanted to help people, but helping seven archangels to achieve their divine duty was never quite what he had in mind…
When Jordan is entrusted by the head nun of his orphanage to deliver a mysterious backpack to a New York City address, he comes unexpectedly face-to-face with Archangel Gabriel. Their acquaintance fast uncovers a labyrinth of secrets that connect Jordan’s once-normal life to an ancient heavenly prophecy. Now, he must help Gabriel to reunite the archangels before evil forces grow too strong.
Soon, Jordan and Gabriel find themselves on a divine quest across the globe, while deep in the pits of Hell, Satan plots his return to earth. To gain control, however, Satan needs the powerful prophetic objects locked safe inside Jordan’s backpack—and the devil will stop at nothing to get what he wants.
With that notion threatening his only family and the safety of his newfound friends, Jordan must do whatever it takes to protect the ones he loves and help the archangels succeed. If that means sacrificing all he thought he knew to go to war with the devil himself? Bring it on.
Schaller, Sara M. The Genesis of Seven. NP: Designs of Seraphim, 2020.
The Genesis of Seven is a great fantasy novel. Sara Schaller expounds on the idea that there is a bloodline of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. A group called the Sacrarium have been entrusted with protecting that bloodline. Jordan grew up in a Catholic orphanage. On the day of his going away party, Sister Helen meets him at the door and tells him he is in danger and needs to grab his stuff and head to an address and trust who he finds there. He finds Gabriel and shares what has happened. It turns out Gabriel is the archangel and Sister Helen is a member of the Sacrarium. Jordan’s revelation leads Gabriel and him to search the globe for the other archangels stationed on Earth. There are many plot twists and turns and setting changes but it is all fairly easy to follow.
Much of the premise and plot cannot really be supported by the Bible. The book is a great read if readers can view it as purely fantasy (fiction) made up by the author. Once I did that, the book drew me in and the intensity of the plot made me want to keep reading. The Genesis of Seven is the first book in Sara Schaller’s The Empyrean Trilogy. It ends in a cliff-hanger leaving the reader anxious for the next book.
I am not sure I would place The Genesis of Seven in a K-12 Christian school library. It is well-written and intriguing, however, since it doesn’t line up with the Bible and does contain a bit of profanity I am not sure it is a good fit for a Christian school library. I encourage librarians to read it for themselves and make their own decision about including it in their libraries.
I want to thank Prism Book Tours for the complimentary copy. This is my honest review.
About the Author
SARA M SCHALLER is a paralibrarian, publishing professional, and young adult author. She lives in Colorado with her mom, dad, brother, and four furry canine siblings. Sara loves the world of pop culture and the performing arts, so when she is not reading or writing, she is either watching movies and shows, attending conventions, or going out to see live performances. She likes to write stories for all ages in the fantasy genre, and her writing usually contains elements of speculative fiction and features a large cast of characters. Sara has a Bachelor’s degree in English, Art History, and Religious Studies from the University of Denver, and a Master’s degree in Publishing from Pace University. For five years, Sara worked as a graphic designer, and her creativity in design carries over into other areas of her life like writing. You can visit her online at http://www.saramschaller.com.
Interview with Sara
When did you first know you wanted to be an author?
Even though I had a wild imagination as a kid and I always came up with story ideas, I never knew I wanted to be an author until I was twenty-one. The idea for The Genesis of Seven came to me while I was in middle school, but I didn’t pursue writing it until twenty-one, mainly because I didn’t have much confidence in my writing. I struggled with reading as a kid, so writing a book seemed impossible to me, but once I started, I couldn’t stop. The book just came pouring out, and I realized how much I loved writing.
When you are not writing, what other hats do you wear? What do you do for fun?
When I’m not writing, I work at my local library. I grew up in libraries, and librarians are the ones who helped me find my passion for books and reading, so I love that I get to give back. For fun, I enjoy going to see performing art shows or attending pop culture conventions. I also love to read, and I occasionally will do crafts, like beading.
What is your favorite genre to read? What about that genre draws you?
My favorite genre to read is fantasy, both urban and epic. What I love so much about fantasy is that you get to escape to a new world, or a world that is familiar but contains some kind of element of the extraordinary. I think what really draws me to fantasy is magic because with magic anything can happen. From a writing standpoint, I also love fantasy because there are no limits on how far my imagination can go.
Which character did you enjoy writing most?
This is a really hard question because I think there’s something about every character that I enjoy writing, even the fallen. But if I had to choose, I think Astrid and Tabitha are the ones I enjoyed writing the most. I know those are two characters, but you can’t have one without the other. Why I enjoy writing them is because I get to have fun with them. They’re a bit crazy, a bit sassy, and a bit unconventional. They also tease Satan so much, which brings a lot of humor to the story. Astrid’s divinations in particular were I something I enjoyed because it really stretched my writing skills to write in rhyme and verse.
As a former K-12 school librarian I have to ask – what is your favorite children’s book?
The one book series that I loved as a kid was A to Z Mysteries. I just enjoyed them so much, and every time I look back on my childhood memories, I can vividly see me reading these books. I think it might have rubbed off on me too because there are a lot of secrets and mysteries in my book that need to be solved 🙂
What advice would you give to a child or teen who wants to be a writer?
Let your imagination run wild and always listen to your heart. Write the story you want to write. Don’t worry about if the idea is trendy or not. Your writing will be most authentic if you’re invested in the story, and the only way to be invested in the story is if it’s something you truly love and want to write. I knew angel stories were not exactly popular in publishing, but I wrote The Genesis of Seven anyway because it made me happy, and was something I was so passionate about I just had to pursue writing it no matter what.
Thank you so much for joining us today, Sara. My readers and I enjoy learning more about the people behind the books.
One winner will receive the following: a backpack to match the main character’s, a necklace to match the main character’s, a signed hardcover, a bookmark, a set of pins with a pen, and a passport with a sticker sheet featuring locations in the book.
Ends September 29, 2020