Mark Wallace Maguire recently announced the release of his second novel in the Alexandria Rising Chronicles series.
Alexandria Rising was published in October 2016 and its sequel, Alexandria Reborn, was published earlier this month. Maguire cites reader interest and reviews as the prompt for him to publish both books in less than a year.
“I was surprised at the strong response from readers who demanded a sequel as soon as possible,” said Maguire, who was nominated for a Georgia Author of The Year and Independent Author of the Year awards for Alexandria Rising. “While I was thinking the book would be well received by the male audience, I was pleased at the interest and support from the female audience as well.”
The book has also received strong reviews from dozens of websites, blogs and book reviewers at home and abroad.
The series follows the tale of Rand O’Neal, an ambition-less newspaper reporter, who is given a final request upon the death of his grandfather — Destroy a mysterious map. What should be a simple errand thrusts O’Neal into a journey across three countries chased by unknown individuals where he discovers humanity’s biggest secret.
“The books are told from a limited third person omniscient point of view with a few tweaks. During the first book, there is a limited vision of scope as to what the protagonist learns,” Maguire said. “With the second book, I wanted to continue the adventure and suspense, but also wanted to open other doors, introduce new characters and settings and show the expanded universe where the character inhabits.”
Maguire says that he does not have a direct source of inspiration for his books.
“I’ve always enjoyed a good adventure story,” Maguire said. “And not just an adventure for the sake of adventure, but a story with substance, mystery, clues and suspense. I had written a prior novel that focused on religion, race, fractured father-son relationships and Southern culture. While it was good, it was not very fun to write. When I began writing, ‘Alexandria Rising’ I wanted something fun to write, and, thus, fun to read. Something with clues, mysteries, maps, cold-blooded villains and broken heroes. In that manner, I was influenced by Robert Ludlum, J.R.R. Tolkien, Dan Brown and even shows and movies like ‘LOST’ and ‘Indiana Jones.’”
The series, according to Maguire, is on track to publish a third installment in 2018. He is also working on a Young Adult novella and a children’s book.
“Writing this series has been a ton of fun and I believe that comes across to the reader,” Maguire said. “I really enjoy the writing. It is a great catharsis and I deeply relish creating new worlds and characters.”
The book tour for Alexandria Reborn kicked off on Saturday at Gremlin Growlers in Fayetteville. The series is on a blog tour through the end of the month.
Maguire is also slated to have a book signing on Sept. 12 for the Lockheed Martin Retirees Association and will do an interview on The Speculative Fiction Cantina podcast on Sept. 29.
As a preacher’s son, Maguire spent his childhood crisscrossing the South. After a brief career in music, he became a reporter at the Marietta Daily Journal and has spent the last 20 years in metro Atlanta as a columnist, editor and director. Maguire, who has won more than 20 awards for his work in journalism, currently serves as the director of Cobb Life Magazine and Cobb Business Journal.
The Alexandria Rising Chronicles are published through Speckled Leaf Press, an independent press that Maguire founded. The books are available online through amazon.com and at select retailers.
Readers can also follow the book on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and at www.alexandriarising.com.