Today I  have the pleasure of  being a tour stop on the DEATH SWORN Blog Tour. This upcoming novel by Leah Cypess is simply amazing and I cannot wait for everyone to enjoy the great fantasy read that it truly is. DEATH SWORN has an amazing cast and a storyline that will surely captivate you with Assassins, caves and magic. If that doesn't do if for you I am not sure what will......except inside look into an evening with a cavern full of assassins, a sorceress, some libations and a "killer" song list.  Don't forget to enter the Giveaway at the end of this post.

A Night of "Killer-Magic"

Illeni sits on the corner of her bed looking down upon at the note that was sent to her earlier that day. The crisp white paper with it's frayed edges in sharp contrast with the angular penmenship.
Celebration at Night fall

Was all the note said but she understood it's meaning. A  tiny ripple of fear went down her spine as she remembered what these "celebrations" meant. But, now was not the time to dissect the rituals of assassins, especially when wine, dancing and music were in her future and Sorin.

Hours later....

True to his word Sorin comes for her and escorts her to the celebration. Unlike last time when she was afraid and unsure of Sorin's intentions Illeni is now excited and moves with ease beside Sorin, eager to spend time with him even though they will not be alone. It isn't until she is down the stairway and on the cavern floor that she takes in the scene before her. The glowstones shines brightly revealing the piles of weapons cleared to make room for dancing along with the jugs of wine, not to mention the assassin party favorite, a pinata in the shape of a human. Pin the axe on the donkey and the Iron Maiden photo booth. Ewww...

On the opposite side of the room she sees many of the students huddled together drinking and singing harmoniously. Behind them is a jumble of words on the wall but she is too far away to read anything and she decides to get closer to find out what it says. As she moves closer Sorin gently offers her a mug of wine and she silently nods her thanks,  a bit too interested in the writing on the wall and the power it is holding over the killers. It clearly must have some magical powers because it is holding everyone entranced, singing in a somewhat competitive manner that is infectious and fun.

She is almost at the wall when Irun sings in triumph "I'm too sexy for this tunic, so sexy it hurts" and then spins a set of knives in both hands putting a nice flourish to this long forgotten song.....

Illeni cannot help herself and she snorts a short but loud laugh. She quickly covers her mouth and hopes that her slip up goes unnoticed but as she looks up she is met with Irun's dark stare. 

"Does the teacher find something amusing?"  he asks, and although his tone is respectful there is nothing respectful in those eyes of his. Illeni shudders with fear when Sorin steps in, "Watch yourself" he demands. Irun looks at the both of them then barks out a laugh stops and says "Why don't we watch you both try to out sing each other?" 

She looks at Sorin and they quickly exchange glances and both say, "NO!!" 

This quick response causes Irun to laugh harder, "I knew you both wouldn't do it" he says continuing to laugh and now points at them both. "Singing takes a special kind of talent that many do not possess. It is unfair, I know, but I have more talent at this than anyone else here." The murmurs of agreement fill the cavern,  and Illeni makes gagging motions behind her hand.

Everyone could feel the hot tension running off Sorin, and things could progress quickly so she finally agrees, "Fine, I will participate. Now what do I have to do?" This makes Sorin's head turn quickly turns towards her and she looks innocently up at him "Say yes," she mouths and his acquiescence into this battle is reluctantly made. This gives her a warm fuzzy feeling that is unsettling.

Moments later....

Bazel stands before them and begins to explain the rules. He points to the wall behind him and explains, "Rules are you have to sing a song about the topic that gets chosen on the wheel behind me, while one person sings a song, you have to think of a different song but you have to say the last word that they said." He looks to both of them, but lingers a bit longer on Illeni, "Does the teacher understand?" she raises her chin and nods yes, "Then let us begin."  

At this point Irun is led to the center of the room, he is blindfolded and holds a dagger in his hand. He raises his arm, and initially aims his dagger towards Illeni but before she can  move he turns, flicks his wrist and the dagger goes sailing across the room and embeds itself into the wall. Bazel goes to the wall and pulls the dagger out, turns and announces to the room, "The topic is Killer-Magic." He looks to me again and explains, "This means that all the songs must have the word killer or magic in them," he nods to the wall "understand?" 

She nods yes, clearly shaken from Irun's earlier attempt and the fact that things had to be explained to her in such a simple manner. She walks toward the center of the room as Sorin begins to sing.

Sorin steps into the center of the floor and begins singing in his richly baritone voice. His eyes never leaving hers.

"I was a killer, was the best they'd ever seen
I'd steal your heart before you ever heard a thing
I'm an assassin and I had a job to do
Little did I know, that girl was an assassin too
She's an assassin
She's an assassin
She's an assassin
She's an assassin
And she had a job to do...." 

She quickly step into the circle and return his gaze

"Do you belive in magic? Yeah.
Believe in the magic in a young girl's soul
believe in the magic of rock n roll
Believe in...."

Sorin spins, bows down then slowly rolls up as he sings

" etiquette

She's a Killer Queen
Gunpowder, gelatine
Dynamite with a laser beam
Guaranteed to blow your mind

Drop of a hat she's as willing as
Playful as a pussy cat
Then momentarily out of action
Temporarily out of gas
To absolutely drive you..."

She then seems to glide towards him and continues

" tight

This magic moment
While you lips are close to mine
Will last forever
Forever til the end of time


Sweeter than wine
Softer than the summer night
Everything I want I....

Sorin is practically on edge, fire in his eyes as he chimes in

"I can't sleep 'cause my bed's on fire
Don't touch me I'm a real live wire

Psycho Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa far better
Run run run run run run run away
Psycho Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa far better
Run run run run run run run away

You start a conversation you can't even finish it.
You're talkin' a lot, but...."

Then she stares straight into his eyes and responds afraid that too much might be revealed

"...but he just kept right on...

Strumming my pain with his fingers (one time),
Singing my life with his words (two times),
Killing me softly with his song,
Killing me softly with his song,
Telling my whole life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song....."

The room is buzzing with their singing but before things can progress further Sorin looks at Illeni with an unreadable expression and bows down low. 

 "I cannot think of anything else....I must concede this battle to the teacher." Everyone is stunned into silence but soon the whispers and stares from the assassins towards Illeni cause her to turn and swiftly walk away. 

Later in Illeni's room
Once inside my room I place more spells on the doors to keep Sorin out. I know he was right behind me but I don't think I could stand seeing him right now. I keep hearing all the whispers from those assassins surrounding me and I remember passing Irun and seeing him smirk at me....bastard.  
How did things get so complicated. She was happy and things between them seemed to be going so well. Then they were singing and all that was unspoken came rushing forth. It was a dangerous game but she did not care.
True to form Sorin is at my door. I hear him knocking and I bury my head under the pillow. I need him to leave to let me be and deal with all of these emotions then I hear him sing.

  "Do I have to tell the story
Of a thousand rainy days since we first met
It's a big enough umbrella
But it's always me that ends up getting wet

Every little thing she does is magic
Everything she do just turns me on
Even though my life before was tragic
Now I know my love for her goes on"

Why do men have to makes things so complicated?
About the Book


Author: Leah Cypess

Release Date: March 4, 2014

Pages: 352

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

When Ileni lost her magic, she lost everything: her place in society, her purpose in life, and the man she had expected to spend her life with. So when the Elders sent her to be magic tutor to a secret sect of assassins, she went willingly, even though the last two tutors had died under mysterious circumstances.

But beneath the assassins’ caves, Ileni will discover a new place and a new purpose… and a new and dangerous love. She will struggle to keep her lost magic a secret while teaching it to her deadly students, and to find out what happened to the two tutors who preceded her. But what she discovers will change not only her future, but the future of her people, the assassins… and possibly the entire world.

About Leah:

I wrote my first story in first grade. The narrator was an ice-cream cone in the process of being eaten. In fourth grade, I wrote my first book, about a girl who gets shipwrecked on a desert island with her faithful and heroic dog (a rip-off of both The Black Stallion and all the Lassie movies, very impressive).

After selling my first story (Temple of Stone) while in high school, I gave in to my mother’s importuning to be practical and majored in biology at  Brooklyn College. I then went to Columbia Law School and practiced law for almost two years at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, a large law firm in New York City. I kept writing and submitting in my spare time, and finally, a mere 15 years after my first short story acceptance, I sold my first novel to Greenwillow Books (HarperCollins).

I live in Brookline, Massachusetts (right outside of Boston) with my husband Aaron, a researcher and doctor at the Joslin Diabetes Center, and our three children.

Follow me on Facebook or Twitter! Website

Giveaway Details:

1 Grand Prize pack signed copies of all 3 of Leah’s books (Mistwood, Nightspell, and Death Sworn), plus signed SWAG for all 3 books as well! US Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule

Week One:

2/24/2014- Two Chicks on BooksOriginal Content

2/25/2014- Mundie Moms-Original Content

2/26/2014- BookishOriginal content

2/27/2014- FiktshunOriginal Content

2/28/2014- Magical Urban Fantasy Reads-Review or Original Content

Week Two:

3/3/2014- Supernatural SnarkOriginal content

3/4/2014- Page Turners - Original Content

3/5/2014- Tales of a Ravenous ReaderOriginal content

3/6/2014- YA SisterhoodReview

3/7/2014- A Backwards StoryOriginal content      


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Can't wait to read this book!!!

    Xoxo. Alexis @ Lexi Swoons

  3. I love pitch perfect! Love your riff-off.
    Well done my friend :)

    Death Sworn look so good.
    Fun post


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