Monday, May 15, 2023

The Delicate Affair of Colonel Baquiste by Luki Belle


Mix some gothic paranormal with your military fiction and behold, a new thriller from Luki Belle. Read an excerpt from The Delicate Affair of Colonel Baquiste and then enter to win a $25 Amazon/BN gift card in the giveaway. Also find out what the author imagines a movie version of her book would be like! Follow the tour for even more!

The setting: two fictitious nations, Hastan and Llehstanz, in a past imaginary era of colonization.

The Llehstanz Monarchy won its final battle over Hastan to colonize the nation after years of war. The battlefield charge was led by a reputable, young, ruthless, and handsome Colonel Valstohl Baquiste. Highly skilled but equally arrogant, he holds a prejudice against the people of Hastan. Tragically, Colonel Baquiste was unexpectedly attacked during the last battle leaving him physically disabled. Realizing his military life is over, the embittered Colonel Baquiste awaits his dismissal to return to Llehstanz. However, he is offered a second chance for victory.

Colonel Baquiste is called back to military duty on a secret mission. He must go alone in disguise to capture elusive thugs terrorizing the Llehstanzite regiment. In accepting the mission, Baquiste realizes he is no longer fighting an enemy on a battleground when he travels to stay at the palace of renowned Southern Hastana landowner, Sir Bojeshnomaan Yervaan. Yervaans’ sinister nature ensnares Baquiste while the delicate assignment compels him to confront his tragic past and his prejudice against Hastanas. If the ambitious Colonel wants victory, it will require him to use not just his grit but also his heart.

Read an excerpt:

He was lying naked on a dry, hard, and dark ground. Curled up like a fetus towards the Old Ones. Staring at their shriveled bare feet. “Valstohl Baquiste you are stronger now than you have ever been, even in the way you are! Wake up now! WAKE UP COLONEL!”

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If your book was made into a movie…

Ha! I thought no one would ever ask :)

The Delicate Affair of Colonel Baquiste (TDACB) would make for a stunning, compelling, gritty, sensual, and intoxicating adapted screenplay and have the viewers yearning for more!

Why do I say this, well let’s look at what about my novel makes it a perfect match for moviemaking :)

TDACB has latitude and depth to offer any movie producer because of the novel’s many complex characters, the intense relationships formed between the male protagonist (Colonel Valstohl Baquiste) and the other people in the novel, and because TDACB is set in diverse locations which exude Llehstanz Monarchy’s military essence coupled with Hastan’s culturally vibrant, sensual, and colorful traditions.

A memorable movie is created not because of one thing but from the composition of multiple elements, each lending itself in the good hands of a nurturing, intuitive and empathetic director. Every element harmonized to create a movie that will leave a long-lasting effect in a mesmerized audience who will find themselves glued to their seats, unable to stop staring at the ending credits, thinking to themselves “no, please don’t end…I want more!” Yes, my dear readers, TDACB promises to deliver that, because it has every good ingredient to create a marvelous movie.

The characters in the novel are intensely nuanced and perfectly imperfect except for the Colonel’s persona (who embodies Valstohl Baquiste and Gulaan Dasmire). Only the Colonel can think and act objectively with the weight of duty upon him while bearing the tragic past of Baquiste and the disguise of Dasmire. Through the Colonel one can appreciate the tense relationship between Valstohl/Gulaan and Jeshn Yervaan. And with the help of the Colonel, one will be intrigued by the Hastana boy Chamcham, who is at the center of Colonel Baquiste/Naturalist Dasmire and Master Yervaan. While TDACB’s core is male dominated, the book is sensually and elegantly framed by powerful women characters who impact (no spoilers), the outcomes. And just like Chamcham there is that innocent and sensual voice of Hastana females in the midst of the powerful women. Now tell me, which script writer would want to pass on TDACB? :)

Surrounding these complex characters and their relationships, is the hint of their past which could give the scriptwriter an opportunity to flashback. The past of the Yervaans, the past of the Baquistes, Hastan’s past as well as Llehstanz when the Monarchy was starting its colonization by conquering Galathi. Only an effective film editor can pull this off because TDACB offers the latitude to imagine which makes it even more delicious!

Speaking of yummy, the cultural richness and vibrancy of Hastanas especially in Daikalin and in the Yervaan palace (including the past of the Yervaans) would be so amazing to see curated by a skilled art director. The architecture of Hastan is beautiful and exudes its strong religious roots through ornate temples and elaborate rituals. There is sensuality and sexuality in the design especially within the Yervaan palace. Contrast this with the industrial, austere yet progressive and scientific culture of Llehstanz ruled by its formidable Monarchy and driven by its gallant military.

Matching the locations to the characters would require impeccable costumes and makeup to showcase the colorful, sultry clothing of Hastanas alongside the striking, authoritative uniforms of Llehstanzite regiment with their dual swords. And let’s not forget the costumes of the Hastana thugs with their weapons and the Llehstanzite civilians in Llehstanz! Oh, there is a surprise set of characters near the end, I would love to see those people’s attires and makeup too!

When we speak of weapons, what comes to mind, dear reader? Yep, fighting! The Colonel has been trained in a special form of fighting that is tribal and animalistic in nature. He uses that heavily because of his condition, to help combat the thugs who are excellent wrestlers. A martial art choreographer and a sword fighting artist could both have fun in curating the fighting scenes.

But it is not all about fighting choreography in TDACB! There are two intoxicating dance scenes in the novel that showcase the rich culture and ritual traditions of Hastan, both these instances have the potential for being magnificent in the stylish hands of a dance choreographer.

What would a movie be without sound and music? I think the novel’s gritty, haunting, moody, thrilling, suspenseful, and sexual essences could be felt by the audience with a great soundtrack and intricate sound mixing!

Pulling all this together would be the locations to create stunning visual effects and wow-worthy cinematography. TDACB has gothic and mesmerizing locations such as the journey to Southern Hastan on the dangerous Ganis river, Southern Hastan’s sprawling farmlands surrounded by marshy/swampy jungles, the colorful and vibrant Daikalin city and the remote and expansive Yervaan palace situated in the midst of dense marshy/swampy jungles. Take it from here to the strikingly different location of regal Llehstanz and colonized Galathi!

So, to tell you the truth, I sure hope The Delicate Affair of Colonel Baquiste is made into a movie! Can’t wait to watch it, can you? :)

Luki Belle works in the media industry. Storytelling was a fixture from childhood when she would listen to stories told by her grandparents, parents, sisters, and cousins who would read to her from diverse cultural fiction books. Growing up, Luki was fortunate to live in various parts of the world and experience beautiful cultures. During this time, she embraced and appreciated diversity among people while recognizing through love, overcoming pain, or grief, one can truly bond with others leading to unimaginable positive outcomes.


Luki Belle will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Dear Andi and to your wonderful readers and commenters, greetings! I am super excited to be here today and thank you from the bottom of my heart for making this day possible :) Looking forward to our chats today! Curious, what is the one book that will always be in your collection?

  2. Replies
    1. Dear Rita, loved hearing that, thank you for sharing your initial thoughts!

  3. Great excerpt and giveaway. :p

    1. Dear Cali, thank you for your thoughts on the excerpt, I loved hearing that!

  4. This sounds like a good book and I really like the cover.

  5. This sounds like a good book and I really like the cover.

    1. Dear Sherry, your comment really touched my heart! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on the cover, it took a considerable amount of thought to compose.

  6. Dear Andi, thank you most kindly for hosting the amazing day and to your beloved readers, I really cherished having the opportunity to connect with you! Take care and be well everyone! With best regards!

  7. I think that The Delicate Affair of Colonel Baquiste would make an excellent film and I hope that this opportunity comes to pass for you. Any idea who you would like to see in the starring roles?

    1. Thank you Bea and thrilled to hear that you share the sentiments :) Hmmm! I have to think about the cast a bit!

  8. Very intriguing guest post!! I really enjoyed reading it!!

  9. Added this book to my Goodreads TBR List and look forward to checking it out!!


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