Wednesday, November 18, 2015

3rd Annual #NameThatButt: Round 7, Double Butt Finale BONUS QUOTE!

This is it, guys! The final round!! And I've got a final Bonus Quote for you, too -- though it might be a little bit anti-climactic if you've already determined the identification of our twin ultibutts!

(To be honest all the best bonus quote action for these two butts is in a forthcoming title -- but that wouldn't be fair quote-play!)

These butts are courtesy of Thomas G. Hale!
Please do not reuse without permission.
A horse whinnied, drawing me to the window. The messenger stood with his animal, greaves, cloak, and leather chest-plate covered in dust from the road. My brothers greeted him, looking as though they had come straight from the practice field. They certainly didn’t look like twins, but of course the priests had attributed that to parentage, and said the same again when Clytemnestra and I were born, three years later, different as moon and sun in appearance and temperament. Leda swore Zeus had been in her husband’s guise the first time he came to her. She only realized the deceit later that night, when Tyndareus himself had returned and took her to bed a second time. The priests believed, then, that fair, green-eyed XXXX had been born of Zeus, and dark-haired and olive-skinned YYYY came from Tyndareus’s mortal seed. When my brothers’ looks were repeated in Clytemnestra and me, their declarations were only made more convincing.

Be sure to drop your guesses in the comments, and if you haven't already, hit up for this week's clues, to #NAMEthatBUTT after you #NAMEthatBOOK!

But as a special treat for this Bonus Quote Finale, here's a snippet of an unedited cut scene from the BOOK you're guessing, as well! Call it Bonus-Bonus content...

Acamas brought me my evening meal, for Aethra could not be spared from the banquet without insulting the guests. I smiled and insisted that he sit with me while I ate, for I wanted desperately to hear the news from Sparta, and I had learned quickly that Acamas heard most everything in the palace. He was still young enough to be overlooked, and old enough to know all the best places to listen.

“You should have seen the horse he rode!” Acamas told me, his eyes bright with excitement and his cheeks flushed. “Black as night and taller than any in Father’s stables. It must be Poseidon’s own stallion!”

“Is XXXX not with him?” I asked, picking through the vegetable relish for the sweet peas. I saw no reason to eat cabbage if I did not need to, though it went well enough with the goat meat.

“Just the son of Atreus.” Acamas wrinkled his nose with distaste. “He demanded that Father let them search the women’s quarters, but of course Aethra would never allow it. She was offended more than Father, I think, and YYYY apologized. Menelaus is certain you must be here, but I do not think your brother believes it. He said that all of Sparta grieves for your loss, and offerings are made to Zeus each day, asking that you be returned unharmed. So many, the priests are growing fat on them! Queen Leda refuses to leave her rooms, and King Tyndareus has sent men out to every corner of Achaea, but it is rumored among the Spartans that Zeus took you to Olympus and so Tyndareus sent XXXX to Delphi to learn what he might from the Oracle.”

“Let us hope that the Oracle keeps our secret, then.” I offered him a fig and he took it with a grin.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

3rd Annual #NAMEthatButt: Round 6 Bonus Quote!

And we're back for Round 6 with another bonus quote! (I can't tell you how much I wish I could quote from BY HELEN'S HAND for this year's #namethatbutt challenge, but alas! Maybe next year!)

Once again, if you haven't seen the clues for this week's butt, hit up and be sure to check it out.

In the meantime, you can Name This Book instead!

“You offer this bull as gift rather than sacrifice. Do you think I am so easily trapped by sacred laws? I am not a king that you can make me your guest-friend and bind me to your protection.”

“I come to speak to the father of my husband, my lord, not to the god.”

“And yet, it is the god’s favors you ask for.” His sandaled feet were tied with seaweed instead of leather, so dark a green they looked black. He offered me his hand, and I had no choice but to take it, or risk giving offense. His fingers closed over mine, warm and dry and well calloused. “Rise, daughter of Zeus, ill-gotten wife of my son.”

I did as he bid, keeping my gaze averted from his face. He wore a sail-cloth kilt the color of sea foam, wrapped around his hips and tied carelessly with thick ropes similar to those I had glimpsed on the deck of Theseus’s ship, but his chest was bare, and he stood taller than his son by a head or more. He was as brown from the sun as any oarsman, his body so thick with muscle, he made Theseus look sparely built.

“Make your sacrifice, for you surely need the god’s favor more than the father’s love.”

Drop your guesses in the comments and get ready, because next week is the DOUBLE BUTT finale!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

#NAMEthatBUTT Round 5

No bonus quote this week -- but please do head over to and check out the clues for this week's #NameThatButt round!!

While you're waiting for next week's games, you'll find me (beginning tomorrow!) at World Fantasy Con in Saratoga Springs, NY, and I'll have Butt stickers and Butt magnets, for your amusement, along with assorted bookmarks, postcards, and whatnots. I'm not on any panels this year, but if you see me, I'll be thrilled to say hello, and my Amalia Dillin books will be on sale in the dealers room at Flights of Fantasy Books and Games!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

3rd Annual #NameThatButt: Round 4, Bonus Quote

For Round 4, we're switching it up to marble, rather than bronze -- and a huge thanks to the photographer, Tommi Lou Carosella, for capturing this backside! Head over to to #NAMEthatBUTT, if you haven't, or keep on scrolling for this week's BONUS QUOTE, and #NAMEthatBOOK instead, for an extra 2 points!

photo by Tommi Lou Carosella, used with permission

“XXXX, hear us,” I began, pouring a sip of the wine into the fire. “We are the vessel, and you are the wine. And so we drink to you, of you, with you, that we might know you, and you might know our hearts and prayers, and carry them up, to Olympus, to Zeus our king of kings, and Hera our queen in all things, that we might be heard and answered!”

And then I drank. One sip, then two, before I circled the hearth, pausing between each of the four pillars, to raise the cup again and drink, giving thanks to [him] with every touch of the wine against my lips. When I reached the position before the throne again, I finished what remained in the kylix and dropped to my knees before the hearth.

“Accept our offerings and all our prayers, we beg of you,” I finished, lifting my arms and throwing my head back. My eyes closed. “Accept us as your servant, your vessel, in this.”

Drop your best guess of the name of the book in the comments on either blog, and thanks for playing! Next week there will be NO bonus quote, but don't worry -- there will definitely be more #NameThatBook fun for round 6!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

3rd Annual #NameThatButt: Round 3, Bonus Quote

I can't promise a bonus quote every week -- there are a couple of sculptures of mythic figures in my hoard who I haven't referenced even obliquely in my books, and in fact, this quote is kind of a stretch but(t)! Name this Book, and you'll get your 2 bonus points, regardless! (If only Helen's Sequel were out, I'd have a much better quote -- but alas and alack!)

And don't forget to #NameThatButt over at, when you're done here! But at LEAST click over to see the reveal for Round 2 because it's one of my favorites of this year's game!

This round's bonus quote:

The Northlands had fallen to the Christians, one after another. All but the Sami, in the far north, and the peasants and Samogitians of Lithuania, to the east, had converted. The old ways were outlawed along with the worship of the gods who had nurtured them for so long. There were those among the converted lands who still made sacrifice in private, praying to Freyr to protect their crops, or calling upon Odin to give them strength in battle, but every year, they grew fewer in number. Every year, the gods of Asgard spoke of moving on. And every year, Odin refused to be persuaded, his one-eyed gaze falling upon Thor, and grimmer lines forming around his mouth and eyes. Odin had never forgiven him for Loki’s murder, nor was he at all pleased that the Council had sanctioned it. But that was not all that lay between them.

“All these years, and you are still under her spell,” Odin had spat, after Thor had told him he would not go on to the new world that Zeus and his brothers had found, regardless of any decision made by the Aesir.

XXXX and Anubis traveled between the two planes, now and again, bringing news and invitations. The Covenant had forged bonds between pantheons that had not been forgotten, and Zeus had not quite given up on reclaiming his wisest daughter. Most of the Egyptians had left, at Ra’s urging, and a good many of the Persians had followed. There was no longer room for any worship but that of Elohim in those lands.

Name that Book! And maybe the mysterious XXXX's backside will come into better focus! :)

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

3rd Annual #NameThatButt: Round 2, Bonus Quote!

Ready for Round 2? Come #NAMEthatBUTT over at! But(t) first: Name this Book for 2 extra bonus points this week!

My photography might not be great but hopefully my writing doesn't disappoint -- here's this week's Bonus Quote!

Reu was watching her, searching her face. “What will you do?”

[She] stepped toward the tree, and the low branch from which the serpent had hung. One of the fruits, hidden in the red leaves, winked with a flash of sunlight. A faint tingle traveled down her arm as her hand closed around it and the fruit came free. The branch swayed, relieved of its burden, weeping the broad scarlet leaves in a shower around her.

The fruit was heavy in her hand. Much heavier than an apple would have been. She wondered briefly about the angels. Who they were, and what they would do to her when they realized she had broken God’s law. Sin, the creature had called it. But was it, really? Or was it wisdom, for the greater good, like the story Reu had told her about the one-eyed man in the sky?

She raised the fruit to her lips.

Name that Book in the comments below, or Name that Butt AND Book over at and aim for the title of #NAMEthatBUTT Champion!

(But seriously you at least want to check over yonder next Tuesday for the full frontal reveal of this sculpture because it is frankly phenomenal, in my most humble opinion. A very different take on its subject!)

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

3rd Annual #NAMEthatBUTT: Round 1, Bonus Quote!

Guess the Butt, and then Guess the book (hint -- it was written by me) from which this quote was taken! Or just guess the book, and you'll still score your bonus 2 points for this round!

Her auburn hair hung loose down her back, myrtle flowers floating in the soft curls like gulls on the sea. A scallop-shell pendant rested at the hollow of her throat, and sparrows and doves darted around her feet, picking at the crumbs of past offerings. Strange that I had never met her before, but I wished that she had not dedicated herself to the gods. Perhaps Menelaus might have fallen in love with her, instead.

“Do you feel so ill-used? The most beautiful woman alive, with a brother who loves you well—Pollux will never forsake you. And a man who would offer you the same, though you spurn him.” She seemed to look right through me, pinning me to the earth. “Is there someone else you would prefer over Menelaus? You have only to name him and he will be delivered.”

“No.” I rose to my feet. I did not like the way she spoke of Menelaus, as if he were nothing more than a convenience. “I ask nothing of these gods. Let Menelaus love me for his own reasons, or better yet, not at all.”

Name that Book, and while you're at it, go ahead and Name that Butt, too! (You know you want to!) Drop your guesses in the comments --they're moderated so no one will see your answer but me-- and join the fun!