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Blog Tour: Brachman's Underworld by Vlad Vaslyn - Guest Post

Brachman's Underworld

Delilah Brachman just died and now she has six days to dodge her fate or she’ll perish for all-time. She’s become an “In-Betweener,” someone whose judgment has yet to be decided, and she’s drawn a ticket for the Tuesday Train, the most damning ticket of all. She struggles against the demon Noc, whose cunning mind masks a childlike loneliness it will do anything to quell, and against Honest Jack, the idealist tyrant who uses torture to get his way. Meanwhile, Delilah begins to care for a man that her real life never prepared her for. Will she overcome the demons in her past, or will the life she led condemn her for all-time?

Vlad Vaslyn

VLAD VASLYN writes genre fiction from a literary perspective, bringing a unique voice and gritty realism to all of his works. He spends time researching and developing his plots and characters in order to create vivid worlds and themes that resonate with his readers.
His debut novel, BRACHMAN’S UNDERWORLD, has been called “mesmerizing” and “wildly imaginative,” and is available now in paperback and all major digital formats.
Visit Vlad on the web at

And now, let's welcome Vlad to the blog!

Do you believe in Heaven and Hell? Does each of us have the capacity to be supremely good, or wickedly evil? And if so, do we choose to be, or simply become one way or the other? Of course not! As in many other aspects of our lives we fall somewhere in the middle. What if, as in many cultural and religious belief systems, there is an afterlife where we are judged? What if those who judge us are unsure of our moral worth? Perhaps we might end up somewhere in the middle, a purgatory, where we may be further tested and observed, and given a last chance for the future of our souls.
I wrote Brachman’s Underworld to explore what such a purgatory might be like from the point of view of the people trapped there. It was important for me to emphasize the universality of both judgment and empathy across many cultural and religious divides. Judgment particularly is such a universal concept.
In order to explore these philosophical questions I needed a blatant flaw for my main character, one that would make it easy for others to judge her harshly, without remorse. That is how Delilah Brachman became a racist. Once I had made that decision, choosing a setting for my novel was easy. My hometown of Lowell is the quintessential mill city, and a cultural melting pot. I wondered what it would be like for Delilah to grow up with a racist father in a place where most kids are immersed in a variety of different cultures and backgrounds from a very young age. These kids go to school together, play sports, and date each other freely. Skin tone is usually an afterthought, and that’s a wonderful thing.
Given this integrated setting, which aspects of her father’s personality would arise in Delilah? How would she hide her father’s racism from her friends? Would she have friends of different backgrounds? Would she secretly agree with her father’s beliefs? Or would she pick and choose, letting race matter when it came to some people, but not to others?
How Delilah deals with racism and the effects it has on her perceptions became the focal point of Brachman’s Underworld. Delilah is thrust into an afterlife adventure that forces her to examine her life, and like many of us, she needs to discover the truth within herself; deep down she knows what is moral, yet her life experiences cloud her judgment in such a way that her ultimate salvation is put into jeopardy. She allows the pain she experienced throughout her life to mask her core problems, using it as an excuse not to change. In the end, she is forced to wonder if she deserves a favorable judgment at all.

So yep, that's about it for today! Thanks for visiting!


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