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Monday, 15 February 2016

VBT & #GIVEAWAY - Apocalypse Wow by Ben Mariner


Science Fiction/Humor



Jack Winters is in a bit of a pickle. Things started out just fine. He had a decent job and a few friends. Then he met the woman of his dreams. They go out on a date and things go really well. That’s when things go south. The morning after turns out to be a week later and the world went ahead and ended itself while Jack was far away in dreamland. Now he’s awake in a post-apocalyptic world with no family, no job, and worst of all, no girlfriend. Along with his friends and some other random tag-alongs, Jack will journey cross country to find the woman of his dreams against zombies, heavy metal horsemen, pirates, and a power so immense and evil it will put his very soul to the test.

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A man who could best be described as homeless was standing in the middle of the merry-go-round as the metal saucer twirled slowly around. His clothes were filthy, and the hair that stuck out the bottom of his tin foil hat was matted and disgusting. In his hands he held a piece of cardboard that was about three feet by three feet with black writing that read: THE END IS NEAR. For some reason, I couldn’t help but stand and watch the man slowly rotate over and over again, reading the sign each time it came around. I found myself wondering three things. First, why was he standing in that abandoned park instead of on a street corner that people other than me frequented, so that he may spread his message? I would think that everyone would like to know that the end – whatever that entailed – was near. Second, why do all homeless doomsday prophets have to be so vague? Don’t they think we’d like a more exact date on when the end would occur? A time, a day…something? And third, just how in the hell does a homeless guy afford markers to make a sign anyway?

I decided to let the more important mysteries of the universe figure themselves out and continued on my way to work. After all, the only apocalypse I cared about was the PlayStation game of the same name starring none other than the incomparable Bruce Willis. Man, that guy rocked my world with his unrelenting machismo. By the way, I’m not gay. I just thought I’d clear that up. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

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Ben Mariner will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here


Do you have a day job as well?
Unfortunately, I’m not a full time writer. Not yet. I currently work in the IT department of a satellite TV provider. Super exciting stuff.

What was your favourite book as a child?
Goblins in the Castle by Bruce Coville. It’s the first book I can remember really loving and reading multiple times. Something about it just totally captivated me. I think it fueled my love for fantasy book as an adult as well.

What book do you wish you had written?
The Harry Potter series, hands down. Not just because it’s probably the most successful series ever, but because it’s one of the most well-crafted stories I’ve ever written. Even now, after having read it 6 times, I still get goosebumps in certain parts. Just amazing.


Have you written a book you love that you have not been able to get published?
Absolutely. I have the first book in a YA superhero series sitting on the digital shelf. It’s also a little bit historical fiction. Set at the turn of millennium, a Villain holds the world hostage by making the Y2K crisis a reality and only a teenager and his friends who have super powers can stop him.

Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?
Oh, there’s tons of stuff in there from my real life. Jack’s car is the biggest. That was a perfect recreation of my first car, sad as that is. Although many of my friends have said that there are no words to properly describe how amazingly terrible the actual car was.

Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
I had an idea for a retelling of the Lewis and Clark expedition. I wanted to fill it with fantasy elements and turn one of the most famous expeditions of all time into an amazing fantasy adventure book. One day I’ll do the research and get that book written, but it’ll probably be a long way off because I’m too lazy for research.

What does your protagonist think about you?
I put Jack through a lot. I mean A. LOT. He probably thinks I’m kind of a jerk. Although I did introduce him to the love of his life, so he should probably cut me some slack.

What sort of Starbuck’s coffee would your characters order? Simple coffee or some complicated soy-non-fat-extra-espresso-half-caff-nightmare?
This is a very unique, awesome question. Jack is no nonsense. Venti Chai with whip. Lola on the other hand would definitely do something super complicated. Maybe a Tripple shot, nonfat, extra foam, caramel chocolate macchiato with extra whipped cream and cinnamon. Is that a thing? Can you order that? I don’t really drink coffee.

How important are the names in your book?
Jack was the only one that was set in stone. I just loved that name for the character. Simple. Effective. Everyone else was really just kind of random and the first thing that popped into my head. I just wanted to steer clear of the modern fad of naming characters something goofy like Thatcher or Beau.

Do you read your reviews?
I always read them. I want to know what people think, good or bad. The good reviews just make me feel good, and the bad ones can sometimes give me ways to improve in the past. Sometimes the bad reviews are vague and unhelpful, but you just have to know that you can’t please everyone and not let it get to you.

Quick Fire

1. Light or dark chocolate? Light
2. Favourite colour? Green
3. Dogs or cats? Both
4. Tea or coffee? Tea
5. Light side or dark side? Light side
6. Morning, noon or night? Night
7. Black and white or colour? Color
8. Drawings or paintings? Drawings
9. Dresses or skirts? Dresses
10. Books or movies? Books
11. Pepsi or Coke? Pepsi
12. Chinese or Italian? Chinese
13. Early bird or night owl? Early bird
14. Chocolate or vanilla?  Vanilla
15. Introvert or extrovert? Introvert
16. Hugs or kisses? Kisses
17. Hunting or fishing? Neither
18. Winter or summer? Summer
19. Spring or fall? Fall
20. Rural or urban? Urban
21. PC or Mac? PC
22. Tan or pale? Tan
23. Cake or pie? Cake
24. Ice cream or yogurt? Ice Cream
25. Ketchup or mustard? Mustard
26. Sweet pickles or dill pickles? Pickles are gross
27. Comedy or mystery? Comedy
28. Boots or sandals? Sandals
29. Silver or gold? Silver
30. Jazz or classical? Jazz
31. Dancing or singing? Singing
32. Checkers or chess? Checkers
33. Board games or video games?  Video Games
34. Wine or beer? Beer
35. Freckles or dimples? Freckles
36. Honey mustard or BBQ sauce? Honey Mustard
37. Body weight exercises or lifting weights? Exercise is the worst
38. Baseball or basketball? Basketball
39. Crossword puzzles or sudokus? Crosswords
40. Facial hair or clean shaven? Clean Shaven
41. Crushed ice or cubed ice? Cubed
42. Skiing or snowboarding? Neither, too cold
43. Smile or game face? Smile
44. Bracelet or necklace? Bracelet
45. Fruit or vegetables? Fruit
46. Sausage or bacon? Sausage
47. Scrambled or fried? Scrambled
48. Tattoos or piercings? Tattoos
49. Antique or brand new? Antique
50. Dress up or dress down? Dress down
51. Cowboys or aliens? Aliens
52. Pancakes or waffles? Pancakes. Waffles are pretentious.
53. Bond or Bourne? Bond
54. Sci-Fi or fantasy? Fantasy
55. Numbers or letters? Letters
56. Star Wars or Star Trek? Star Trek
57. Fair or theme park? Theme Park
58. Money or fame? Money
59. Washing dishes or doing laundry? Laundry
60. Snakes or sharks? Sharks
61. Orange juice or apple juice? Orange
62. Sunrise or sunset? Sunset
63. Slacker or over-achiever? Slacker
64. Pen or pencil? Pen
65. Peanut butter or jelly? Jelly
66. Grammys or Oscars? Oscars
67. Detailed or abstract? Abstract
68. Multiple choice questions or essay questions? Multiple Choice
69. Adventurous or cautious? In the middle
70. Saver or spender? In the middle
71. Glasses or contacts? Glasses
72. Laptop or desktop? Laptop
73. Classic or modern? Classic
74. Personal chef or personal fitness trainer? Chef
75. Internet or cell phone? Cell
76. Call or text? Text
77. Curly hair or straight hair? Straight
78. Shower in the morning or shower in the evening? Morning
79. Spicy or mild? Spicy
80. Marvel or DC? DC
81. Paying a mortgage or paying rent? Mortgage
82. Sky dive or bungee jump? Sky Dive
83. Oreos or Chips Ahoy? Oreos
84. Jelly or pudding? Jell-o
85. Truth or dare? Dare
86. Roller coaster or Ferris wheel? Roller Coaster
87. Leather or denim? Denim
88. Stripes or solids? Stripes
89. Bagels or muffins? Muffins
90. Whole wheat or white? White
91. Beads or pearls? Pearls
92. Hardwood or carpet? Hardwood
93. Bright colours or neutral tones? Bright colors
94. Be older than you are or younger than you are? Younger
95. Raisins or nuts? Nuts
96. Picnic or nice restaurant? Nice restaurant
97. Black leather or brown leather? Black
98. Long hair or short hair? Short
99. “Ready, aim, fire” or “Ready, fire, aim”? Fire, aim, ready
100. Fiction or non-fiction? Fiction
101. Smoking or non-smoking? Non-smoking
102. Think before you talk or talk before you think? Talk before think
103. Asking questions or answering questions? Answering

Ben Mariner is the author of Apocalypse Wow as well as The Many Lives of Zane Montgomery, which definitely sold some copies to some people. He currently lives in Denver with his wife and animals. He enjoys mozzarella sticks, dunk tanks at carnivals, and solving crime with his psychic powers and best friend/sidekick.




Tour Organised by: 

Goddess Fish Promotions


  1. thank you for the chance to win :)

  2. Thanks for hosting today! I'll be stopping by throughout the day to answer any questions that anyone may have.

  3. Great excerpt and interview, especially the quick fire, sounds like a fantastic read, thanks for sharing!

  4. Awesome post and interview! The Quick Fire was fun! Thanks for sharing!!

  5. Great interview and excerpt! Thank you for sharing!