Wednesday 29 May 2019

Jagger Jones and the Mummy's Ankh #BlogTour #Deleted scene

Jagger Jones and the Mummy's Ankh

Jagger Jones is a whiz kid from Chicago’s South Side. Ask him anything about Ancient Egypt, and Jagger can fill hours describing all that he knows. But when he and his precocious little sister Aria fall more than three thousand years back in time to the court of Amarna, Egypt, Jagger discovers a truth that rocks his world: books don’t teach you everything there is to know.

Mummies, pyramids, and cool hieroglyphics make awesome movie props, but the ancient court of Amarna is full of over-sized scorpions, magical amulets, and evil deities determined to scare unwanted visitors away. If Jagger and Aria are to return safely home, they must find nine soul-infested gemstones, defeat an evil general, save the royal family, and figure out how to rescue themselves!

Armed only with Jagger’s knowledge of history and a few modern objects mined from his pockets and Aria’s sparkly purse, the siblings have exactly one week to solve supernatural riddles and rescue the royal family. If they can pull it off, Jagger Jones just might return to Chicago a hero.

Jagger Jones and the Mummy’s Ankh
by Malayna Evans
Publication Date: May 28, 2019
Publisher: Month9Books

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Guest Post

Deleted scene

One of the many big changes I made in the manuscript was killing off two of my favourite darlings—the Queen Mother, Tiye, and Vizier, Aye. In part, I wanted the cast to be more kid centric. But I’ll admit, I was fond of the two older, wizened characters … so fond they might have cameos in books two and three. But this particular scene also suffered from too much telling, not enough showing. It had to go!

The door at the far end of the opulent room opened, letting in the other two ancient Egyptians who’d helped Tatia cast the spell that pulled Jagger and Aria back in time: the Queen Mother of Amarna, Tiye, and the Vizier, Aye. Two historical actors Jagger had read about but never imagined meeting.
The old man looked a little older than Gramps. He had a kind face with white hair; his eyebrows boasted more hair than his head. His chest was bare but for a thick golden torque that circled his skinny neck. He wore a white kilt and worn leather sandals speckled with blue stones. The Queen Mother, Tiye, was scary proper with impeccable posture and a starched white gown that contrasted sharply with her dark skin. A turquois scarab beetle hung from her golden necklace. Her straight, black hair with blunt bangs was so thick it had to be a wig.

These three ancient magicians had cast their voices across the ages, waking Jagger and calling him to the tomb. They’d greeted him with a cup of sweet-smelling tea, a dire warning about imminent danger, and the unexpected news that the gods wanted Jagger, apparently a distant relative of the royal family of Amarna, to save the world or some such nonsense. Jagger was still trying to process the now demonstrable fact that the well-ordered world he thought he understood, thought science explained, included real magic!

The whole thing made him feel like a rat in a science experiment, with no control over where, and when, he was led. Thinking about it now, Jagger couldn’t help but take a little solace in the shock on their faces when they’d spotted Aria. They’d acted like American boys fell into their midst everyday but nine-year-old girls from their future were utterly unexpected. Their plan had been to call him to the tomb, to
the mummy, to the amulet, to the past. They didn’t know his sister would grab the amulet first, activating the spell just as he grabbed her hand, sending them both falling through endless space. And time!

Aria’s face when he convinced her that they’d travelled 3,000 years back in time was pretty priceless too, although Jagger had been annoyed, yet again, by her inability to distinguish very important things from not important things: she didn’t even care that Einstein’s theory of relativity had correctly posited time travel was possible but seemed to think she was a princess when told the two of them were distant-distant relatives of the princess and queen mother. Jagger was pretty sure his sister thought her friends back home were going to fall at her feet and offer up their stuffed animals when she told them, as if anyone would believe such an outrageous story.

“Would you like to meet her, my Prince?” Aye interrupted not only Jagger’s thoughts, but also a minor family squabble between Tiye and Tatia over the curls that were peeking out from behind Aria’s headband. Shortly after Jagger and Aria had enjoyed their hey-welcome-to-the-ancient-past-and-have-some-tea greeting, Tiye had ordered the princess to make the two kids presentable--Jagger’s joggers and Aria’s leopard skin tights and hot pink tank top weren’t going to cut it here--before disappearing with Aye beyond the giant gold chamber door.

“You mean her-the-mummy?” Aria asked before Jagger could form a response.
The mummy they’d found in the tomb, amidst a treasure of gold and jewels and more riches than his family could ever spend, was too small to be an adult but not quite a child either. It had been laying in a large stone box that stood at the far end of the room, flanked by two larger-than-life dog-headed statues made of some kind of black stone embossed with gold. Jagger knew those dog-headed guards hadn’t really been staring at him, but they’d felt alive nonetheless. Even now he got the heebie-jeebies thinking of them. Once he had sucked it up and inched past them, he’d seen the mummy lying in an open golden coffin, linen wrapping gleaming white like fresh toilet paper.

Malayna Evans is the author of the middle grade time travel series, Jagger Jones. Malayna earned her Ph.D. in Egyptology from the University of Chicago and has used her background to craft a tale loaded with historical details, attested ancient actors, and a magical adventure full of gods, mummies and wriggling creatures. Malayna enjoys a busy life of reading, writing, and playing in Oak Park, Illinois with her two kids, a spoiled rescue dog named Caesar, and a dwarf hamster named Pedicure.

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