Check out a DELETED SCENE from brand-new release SPELLBINDERS: THE NOT-SO-CHOSEN-ONES by Andrew Auseon and enter to WIN A COPY!

Before this tour, I had never heard of SPELLBINDERS: THE NOT-SO-CHOSEN ONE but as soon as I saw the summary, I knew I wanted to read it and take part it the tour!

I love when you take a trope that's been done a million times and subvert it in a new way. A Chosen One book where the Main Character is actually NOT the Chosen One, only mistaken as such? Gimme, gimme!

Today, I get to share a deleted scene from the book and tell you a little about it. You'll also have a chance to watch the book's trailer and enter to WIN a copy to read it for yourself!!!

About The Book:


Author: Andrew Auseon

Pub. Date: May 14, 2024

Publisher: Yearling

Formats:  Hardcover, Paperback, eBook, Audiobook

Pages: 448

Find it: Goodreads

"Ben may only be pretending to be the 'Chosen One'—but I’ve definitely chosen this one as my favorite new fantasy series.”
—Max Brallier, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Last Kids on Earth series

How far would you go to play the hero? One seventh grader gets way more than he bargained for when he is swept into the fantasy quest of his gaming dreams in this funny illustrated series full of adventure and twists.

It’s not so easy being the Chosen One (or in Ben Whitlock’s case, pretending to be the Chosen One). Sure, when you’ve been mistaken for a long-prophesied hero by a teenage girl/mysterious assassin and transported to a fantasy realm you're supposedly destined to save, you don’t have to worry about things like math homework. But when flying narwhals are trying to blast you into oblivion (gulp) and a bunch of old mystics in flip-flops want you to enter something called the Gullet of Eternal Torment (double gulp), suddenly a C in algebra doesn’t seem like such a big deal.

Back in the real world, Ben preferred to escape into fictional adventures and role-playing games. But the more he learns about his true quest, the more he realizes that being a hero goes way beyond rolling a few dice. . . .


Spellbinders hooked me from the beginning, but it became one of my favorites around the first flying narwhals.'“—James Riley, New York Times bestselling author of the Story Thieves series

"Here comes a new series that brilliantly embodies the power of creativity....The book’s immersive fantasy world of Lux is one I did not want to leave."—George Jreije, author of the Shad Hadid series

"To use the local parlance, a “ridonkulously” entertaining kickoff." —Booklist

"The themes of interpersonal relationships and change give the work emotional heft...A love letter to escapism and writing one’s own destiny." Kirkus Reviews

"Through subversions of familiar fantasy tropes and a thoroughly engaging plot, Auseon conjures an idiosyncratic realm replete with endearing characters, madcap humor, and hijinks-filled adventure"— Publisher’s Weekly


Book Trailer:


Deleted Scene from 
by Andrew Auseon


Excerpt for Rockstar Book Tours



Around suppertime, the wagons pulled off the main southern road and formed a circle for the night. By this time, the rain had stopped, and Ben had finally been able to take a restroom break in some bushes behind an old God of Shadows ruin covered in graffiti. He came back out of the forest to find members of the Daring Few stacking the camp’s big central bonfire and dividing up into hunting parties to catch the meal. Kids played tag around the tents while dogs gave chase, nipping at their heels. Somebody wheezed away on an accordion.

Merv sat on the small balcony of Drake’s wagon and jimmied a rusty padlock, digging at it with a bent fork. “Have you seen Drake?” Merv asked.

“Not once,” Ben said. “I guess he doesn’t use his wagon much.”

“He prefers to ride alone,” Merv said. “Horseback. Wind in his hair. All that.” The fork slipped and went sideways, scratching the palm of their hand. “Butternut squash!” They sucked on the cut as it began to bleed.

“Don’t you have tools for that?” Ben asked.

“My old set got swallowed by a centaur.”

Ben brightened, and he hopped up into the wagon to grab his backpack. Unzipping the front pocket, he snatched his set of lockpicks and handed it to Merv. “Happy birthday,” he said, patting the mimir on the shoulder.

“Hey, thanks,” Merv said, grinning. “These are great.”  

As he dug through the backpack, Ben noticed that items had been rearranged, reorganized, stuffed in the wrong pockets, and he began to panic. “Where is it?” he asked. “Where is my notebook?”

“Calm down,” Merv said, glancing up. They pointed to a small shelf above the Witch Wash zit cream and tubes of hair mush. “Niara left it for you. It’s right there.”

“Why did Niara have it?” he asked.

Merv shrugged.

It didn’t make sense. Niara had lied to him once, in a big way, and it would be a long time before he truly trusted her again. The idea that she would do something sneaky while he was conked out in Drake’s loft made him uneasy. 

As if sensing that somebody someplace had been thinking about him, Drake made his entrance at the front of the wagon, striding over to them with a big smile on his face. Clothes spotless. Hair groomed. Like a model showing up late to a photo shoot. Ben wondered how he always looked so good. He must have had a private bathroom tucked away in the wagon, or at the very least, a hairdryer.

“Hail, my friends!” he said with a quick bow. “Did you enjoy the journey?”

Ben nodded. “Yeah, thanks a lot. Your wagon has a lot of parrots.”

“That it does,” Drake said. “You know what they say about parrots?” Ben waited, but Drake didn’t elaborate.

“Did you hear any news?” Merv asked. 

“Niara has planned a group meeting,” Drake said. “All of us. The Daring Few. Friars and scribes. She wishes to plot our next move.” He gave Ben a quick once over. “Would you like to borrow something else to wear? One of my many lounging robes, perhaps? I have more than four hundred varieties, from buffalo mane to the finest Spandex.”

“I’m good, thanks,” Ben said.

People had begun to gather around the beginnings of the bonfire, and from the back of the crowd Niara appeared on the back of her awesome black horse. She rode up, exchanged greetings with a few of the Daring Few, and surveyed the group; for an instant, her gaze fell on Ben, and he waved eagerly but she didn’t see him (or chose to ignore him). Her saddlebags bulged with supplies, and over her usual cloak she wore a hooded coat with a thick gray hide.

She was leaving.  

Drake continued to stare at Ben, a finger pressed to his lips. “What about a pointy hat? You are a bit like a sorcerer, and they tend to wear pointy hats.”

“No pointy hats.”

“New boots, perhaps? Something with wings?”

Ben’s first reaction was to say yes, yes, yes, please yes, but he remembered the conversation he’d had with Merv the night before. Much of the time, his expectations didn’t really match with reality. Flying boots? Yes. Awesome. What could be better? Flying boots? No. High altitude accidents. Broken bones. Probably not as sweet as you’d think.

“No, thanks,” he said, and he tugged on Drake’s sleeve. “Stop trying to dress me up, and let’s go find out what Niara’s doing.”

They joined the others around the jumping flames. Instruments were stowed and work was stopped, as Niara stepped forward to speak. She threw a long shadow across the muddy ground. Chatter quieted and then ended altogether.  

“With the Elders in hiding, I speak for the tower,” Niara said, her voice rising to a boom. “We have suffered a great loss on the coast, but we will raise the tower once again. That is my promise to you.” There were cheers from the Daring Few and the collection of homeless servants and scholars.

“But we all must do our parts,” she continued. “Now that the battlefield is far behind us and the Elders are safe in their secret camp, we will continue with our plans, and we will make the Prophet proud.”

“And earn some gold!” a mercenary shouted, and everybody laughed.

“Yes, you will be paid,” Niara said, but she wasn’t smiling, “The Elders will see to it. But there is difficult work still ahead.” She inhaled and seemed to raise herself up even taller. “I will continue with the mission that was given to me, and you will continue with the quest that was given to you.”


“Wait, which quest?” Drake asked, his voice filling the awkward emptiness. “I don’t have any quests scheduled until the fall, and then it’s nonstop questing until the spring, so when did you want to fit this in?”

Niara’s face darkened. “Not you, you fool.” She pointed at Ben. “Him.”

Drake nodded. “Right. That would make a lot more sense.”

“We will proceed with Elder Mind’s plans,” she said, voice stiffer and scarier, like the ragged edge of a tin can. “I will head east to Cleveland, and the rest of you will continue south to the Chafing Lands and the Gullet of Eternal Torment. The Chosen One’s quest must be completed.”

Raising his hand, Ben waited for Niara to call on him as if he were in class; but she never did, so he just started talking. “Um, not a chance,” he said. All heads turned to see who had dared tell the kingdom’s greatest assassin no. “You’re crazy if you think I’m going on the Elders’ suicide quest. Especially now.”

Merv turned in surprise. “Wait, really?”

“Uh, yeah,” Ben said. “I’m so out of here.”

“You must complete the quest!” Niara commanded, as the crowd began to murmur. Several of the mercenaries backed away nervously. “The king’s soldiers have reached us in our home, forcing the Elders to flee from their sacred land. We are running for our very lives, and the only way to stop this series of tragedies is to take back control.”

Ben shrugged. “Maybe for you. But I have to give up my control to give you control. I won’t have any say in my own future. And that’s not right.”

She glared at him hard, eyes as sharp as her blades. The black mare snorted behind her. “It doesn’t matter if it’s right. The prophecy demands it.”

“I don’t care!” Ben shouted, surprising even himself with his anger. “I’m a kid. I can’t take a taxi by myself. I slept in my mom’s bed until a year ago. My dentist makes me sit in a chair covered in stickers.” He started walking through the crowd, and they parted for him, and soon he stood right in front of Niara. “I don’t care about your prophecy,” he said right to her face. “It’s dumb.”

A group oooooooh rose up from the group, and a Daring Few axeman muttered a quiet, “Oh, snap.”

Niara was speechless.

“The prophecy isn’t the one that has to die,” Ben said. “And neither are you. It’s easy to order me off on some crazy adventure because you’re not the one who has to finish it.”

“I would gladly lay down my life to fulfill the prophecy.”

“Well, go ahead,” Ben said. “It’s all yours.”

“I am not the Chosen One,” Niara said.

“Yeah, maybe I’m not either,” Ben said. He was tired. Of fighting. Of writing. Of arguing. Most of all, he was drained to his very core from all the lying, to the others, but mostly to himself.

“I know you are angry,” Niara said. “But I have seen what you can do, and I know who you are inside.”

Ben shook his head. “You don’t really know me.”

“I think I do,” she said. 

Turning her back on him, she mounted her horse and kicked her boots into its ribs. The mare reared up and whinnied, and the crowd backed away. Niara shot Ben one last pleading look before galloping away through the sagging trees with her black cloak flapping behind her. They clop of the hooves sounded like the world’s worst beat-boxer.

Once Niara had gone, Merv turned to Ben with their hands in the air. “You’re not coming with us?”

“I’ll go with you,” Ben said with a sigh. He sat down on the ground by the bonfire, which had grown into a crackling blaze. “But I’m not dying for this place. No, sir. I won’t even vacuum the kitchen without whining, so I doubt I’m going to drop everything and headbutt some lava. I’m not world-saving material. I thought I was, but I’m not.”   

“That’s fine, Ben Whitlock,” Drake said, sitting down beside him. “You must not worry about it for one moment longer.”

“And why is that?” Ben asked suspiciously.

“Because I know someone who is world-saving material,” Drake said, and he gave them both a thumbs-up.

Ben and Merv groaned at the same time. Behind them, the same Daring Few axeman as before murmured a quiet, “Oh, snap.”

Excerpt from SPELLBINDERS: THE NOT-SO-CHOSEN-ONES by Andrew Auseon

reprinted with permission from Labyrinth Road

All rights reserved.


About Andrew Auseon:

Andrew Auseon is the author of several books for children and young adults, and he is the writer of numerous bestselling and award-winning video games. A transplant from the Midwest, he lives in Washington, D.C. with his family and two very naughty cats. He loves breakfast cereal, the sound of the ocean, and the feeling of a brand-new book in his hands.


Website | Book Website | Twitter | Instagram | TikTok | Amazon


Giveaway Details:

2 winners will receive a signed finished copy of SPELLBINDERS: THE NOT-SO-CHOSEN ONE & a swag pack. US Only.

Ends June 8th, midnight EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:


Two Chicks on Books

Guest Post/IG Post


Wishful Endings

Guest Post/IG Post





YA Books Central

Interview/IG Post


A Backwards Story

Excerpt/IG Post



TikTok Spotlight



IG Post

Week Two:



IG Review/TikTok Post


Review Thick And Thin

Review/IG Post



IG Review/TikTok Post


Fyrekatz Blog

Review/IG Post


The Momma Spot




IG Review


Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Review/IG Post


Country Mamas With Kids

Review/IG Post


Kim's Book Reviews and Writing Aha's

Review/IG Post



Review/IG Post/TikTok Post


More Books Please blog

Review/IG Post

Week Three:


One More Exclamation

Review/IG Post





The Book Critic

Review/IG Post