Malketh and the Undead by Dave Maruszewski – Q&A and Giveaway

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Any weird things you do when you’re alone?

Talk to myself. I come from a long line of self-discussers. I think it is how we relieve our stress or worry. I’ve tried to stop, but finally gave into to my own nature. I just make sure no one is within earshot. Hopefully, no one throws me into an asylum when I get older.

Who is your favorite author and why?

I used to say Dostoyevsky because his ability to bring thoughtful concepts to story. However, now I think I have none. There are so many interesting writers out there, I want to experience more.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?

Take this with a grain of salt. I am a writer who tries to engage people who don’t like to read the classics but still want to read. So, I forgo pristine writing in order to get people comfortable in reading. Hence, I elevate storytelling. I’ve read many well written pieces that I found completely boring.

I engage the reader with a range of characters. I prefer putting differing characters together and seeing how they interact. That can be fun. For example, how will a logical character deal with a whimsical one?

I prefer dialogue to word pictures or even world building. I think that I could create entire books of character discussions. In fact, it has been done by others. The rest is gravy and not necessarily needed.

Where did you get the idea for this book?

When I started this book, it was a completely oral. I told it as a bedtime story to my son. As opposed to my first book, I dictated this one directly to text.

My main thought was to have a classic bad guy. This came about as my son watched the Avengers movies. My wife and I liked the Thanos in Infinity War. My son liked the Endgame Thanos better. My wife and I like the complexity of that character in our incantation whereas my son wanted a villain that he could see the Avengers fight without remorse. I decided to take that idea and used Malketh to give our three a reason to fight without remorse. Of course, when my wife edited the work, she got me to soften Malketh a little. I tried to give a little more insight into why he went the way he did and gave him some positive qualities.

My son was also into zombies at the time and suggested a story based on that. I thought it would be neat to involve the undead in an epic fantasy. It might mix the pot a little.

What is your favorite quote that relates to writing?

I think that my favorite one I read went like “When you have too many thoughts, write. When you don’t have enough, read.” That’s a pretty good model.

Raven, Romda and Ravai are settling into their new knightly duties well. With the Dark Beast defeated, their normal tasks almost seem mundane.

Amidst the boredom, Ravai asks, “Why does no one talk about villains from the past?”

Romda reasons, “What would be the point?”

There is a point. Even though villains may have been defeated in the past, they may still be around, waiting in the background ready to resurface once again.

Malketh has returned to the kingdom, but something is different about him this time. He is back with an entire army … an entire army of undead soldiers!

“Whether you want to read this aloud to your little one or let them explore this magical world on their own, parents can rest assured that this second installment in the Raven, Romda, and Ravai series will be a playful, whimsical addition to their bookshelves.” –The Book Review Directory

“… the squires are appealing characters, as is their comical banter.” – Blue Ink Review

A great story for the fantasy loving youth, this adventure will appeal to those who like action and humor in an easy reading environment.

Enjoy an Excerpt

They keep going until they hear a large rumble. A small mass of rocks fall to the ground. The three look up and see a gigantic figurine of a man holding a giant emerald. Romda puts her lantern up to the emerald, and the light refracts and bounces off the many faces such that the whole room is lit. This brings relief to the three.

Unfortunately, they notice something else. When the room comes up from the dark, Raven, Romda and Ravai notice all these eyes staring at them. The undead are here. The three are surrounded.

Perplexed, Raven, Romda and Ravai freeze. They are scared. However, the entire horde of undead does not approach them. What is wrong with them? What do they want?

At last, the undead begin to slowly stir. They begin to walk slowly. At first they seem to move in random directions. Then, a pattern to their motion becomes apparent. They move about, revealing an opening in their numbers in the shape of a small circle. That opening reveals a hooded figure. The hooded figure says…

About the Author: Dave Maruszewski is blessed with a great family. He was originally inspired to write stories by his wife and son.

He strives to develop stories with sound moral values that will be enlightening as well as entertaining to youths and adults. The Raven, Romda and Ravai books are targeted especially for children who shy away from reading. His stories are created from an accumulation of experience from careers/backgrounds as a physicist, engineer, teacher, artist, video game designer and software developer.

In between writing stories and running his own company, Digital Tumult (, Dave enjoys video games, watching internet videos and hanging out with his family.

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  1. Thanks for hosting!

  2. Marcy Meyer says

    Great cover. Enjoyed the interview. I am a self-talker too.

  3. Thank you for hosting and the questions!

  4. I LOVED the “where did you get the idea for this book” answer. The moment I saw Thanos differently was in Infinity Wars at the moment when everyone started crying because you and he couldn’t believe what he did.

    • Thanos is a very conflicted character. He’s interesting. I tend to write my large villains like this. People who have a vision but it got corrupted by too much practicality or lack of deeper understanding.

  5. Enjoyed reading the interview. Sounds like a good book

  6. The excerpt was great.

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