Author: Brie Donning (page 1 of 10)

Exiles Release + Interview with Endathlorsam + Giveaway

So my friends all have books coming out this week. That’s what it feels like at least. I’d gott muddled on the time and though this post wasn’t till next week. So here I am late at night again finishing a post

Jaye L. Knight’s newest novel, Exiles, has been released! Exiles is the fourth book in the Christian fantasy series, Ilyon Chronicles. Read about it below and be sure to check out the other blog stops on the tour by visiting the official tour page. Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

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~About the Book~

Exiled after their defeat in Samara, the Resistance struggles to find allies in their quest to restore King Balen to his throne and put an end to the emperor’s tyranny. When the crete people refuse to lend their aid, Balen leads a group to Dorland to reason with them and win their support. However, enemies prove to be everywhere, and they find themselves in a fight to keep Dorland from becoming Daican’s latest conquest.

Back in Landale, the arrival of a new enemy forces Trask and Anne to tread more carefully than ever. Tensions are rising, and the enemy is determined to test Anne’s loyalty and root out the location of Trask and the Resistance once and for all.

Feeling trapped within the walls of Valcré, Prince Daniel must contend with an ever-eroding relationship with his father. As their clashes escalate, the situation becomes potentially life threatening when his loyalty is called into question. His sister seems bent on branding him a traitor and actively seeking to condemn him to the fate of those put to death in their father’s new arena. Daniel is certain his father would never execute his only son and heir, but with other forces at work, it might not be that simple.

One small misstep could prove fatal for all.

 

Available now on Amazon!

goodreads

~Interview with Sam!

Jaye let people choose characters to interview and I picked Sam, a talcrin originally from the island of Arda, also known by his full name of Endathlorsam. I then proceeded to have a creative blank and couldn’t come up with questions. Erika Mathews came to my rescue with a whole list of things to ask him. Sam happens to be one of her favourites in the series. So thank you, Erika. And on with the interview.

“Welcome to Reality Reflected, Endathlorsam.”

“Thank you. It is my pleasure to be here.”

“How did you come to know Elom?”

“My parents. I grew up in a very devoted home in Arda. My parents are excellent examples of strong Elôm followers, and did well in teaching me and my siblings and cultivating growth in our faith. I owe much of who I am to them.”

“What’s something about Arda or Talcrins that people find surprising?”

“Arda is not like any coastal country in the mainland of Ilyon. Where Arcacia, for example, is known for the gold hued stone that was used to build Auréa Palace, in Arda we have white stone. The cities along the coast are brilliant white, though some buildings are painted in vivid colors such as blue or red. With the blue waters of the Sidian Ocean, it is quite beautiful, and I often miss it.”

“It sounds beautiful. What was the most interesting thing about teaching at Tarvin Hall?”

“Being a scholar at Tarvin Hall allowed me access to the greatest collections of information in Arcacia—libraries only rivaled by those in Arda. There is unlimited knowledge to be learned. Even talcrins who spend their entire lives studying could never learn it all.”

“think I would feel overwhelemed by so many books. Even with the small collection at my home, I’m inseveral theolgical tomes and can never read all the history I want. What is your favourite passage from the Scrolls?”

“I have many, but one of my favorites is, Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is in the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, that extends its roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit.”

“I love that passage. It is so easy be anxious when things aren’t going as expected. I haven’t really noticed that aspect in our version of the Scrolls. It helps one face the future boldly. Do you have any big dreams and plans for the future?”

“It is my hope and dream that worship of Elôm will one day be accepted again in Arcacia, and I would love to invite more of my people back. There are not many of us left on the mainland anymore. If Elôm wills it, I would like to have a part in bringing the knowledge that is so important to talcrins to the people of Arcacia. And, on a more personal note, I would also like to have a family of my own one day.”

“Erika was was wondering about the personal side. Thanks for telling us that. And that great hope is the hope of all us readers, both for Arcacia and our own world. Thank you Sam and Jaye for the interview.”

Haven’t discovered the world of Ilyon yet? The first three Kindle books are on sale August 11th – 14th!
You can find them on Amazon.
3BookKindleSale


~About the Author~

Jaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Etsy.

GiveawayBanner

Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win a themed giveaway pack! Prizes include an autographed copy of Exiles, a pewter dragon necklace by treasurecast, and a sword letter opener! (Giveaway is open to US residents only. Cannot be shipped internationally.)(Which means means I can’t enter. My copy is on its way already though.)

 

 

Rosette Thornbriar review + Interview with Rachel Roden

Last day of my blog streak. Nothing more until next week if only to not overload people.

Today we have this sweet little story.

Once upon a time, way out west…

Back when they were young’uns, Fleur Guardstone proposed to Rosette Thornbriar with a cigar band ring. However, not long after, she disappeared back into the forest and hadn’t been heard from since. However, when Fleur hears reports of smoke coming from that woods, he’s determined to find out if it is, indeed, his dear Rosette. If he can get past all of the briars.

~Review~

I don’t tend to read children’s stories much, but I like this one.

Rosette Thornbriar is not overly simple and fits very well in its setting. I have read stories in which something is skewed or just sounds plain odd in a different setting. This isn’t one of those. Granted westerns, especially bedtime story western aren’t my area of expertise, but it feels right.

There’s a cute little town and a devoted hero. He doesn’t just ride out, hack through a few briars and rescue the girl. It’s much more complex than that. We’ve also got Cindy who I look forward to seeing the next story.

As a children’s story, Rosette Thornbriar is very short. I think I’ve just begun, then realizes I’m half way though. It’s well paced though. The ending ties up almost too neatly, but that’s common to both fairytales and childrens stories.

If you have children, or simply like fairytales, this is a great book.

~Interview~

I got to interview Rachel and found she likes nice long answers.

What is your favourite color? Least favorite?

Yellow … but not lemon yellow, a nice rich golden yellow that is tending toward orange.
I also really like purples all the way into the indigo range, but not the maroon range.

I don’t like dark colors. Especially like dark blues and blacks. But maybe the color that appeals to me the least is that dusty blue – cornflower blue ….

I like my colors bright and full of life.

What is a book that changed your life?

Other than the Bible …. probably the Hobbit. When I was about 7, we went to a play in the park where we watched “the Hobbit”. The story intrigued me, but I could never remember the name of it later. I already liked reading, but mostly read biography’s and picture books at that time. By the time I was 9, I had begun an all out search for the book from the play, and soon realized that it was only going to found in a longer book. I spent the next 5-7 years searching for that book. Along the way, I tripped on fairy tales, science fiction, fantasy, and hundreds of authors and series of books.

Finally, in my mid teen years, I was telling someone about the play, and they recognized the story and soon I held my first copy of “The Hobbit”. I read a lot of books over the years while searching for that book, fell in love with the genre, and never looked back. The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings remain one of the few books that I have read a second time – on purpose.

I love your story. It’s amazing that it took you years to rediscover the book. I admit to being a frequent re-reader.

What do you love most about fairytales?

How much variety there is … yet the different cultures all have a cores set of stories that are the same. Every culture has a Cinderella tale. They all have a trickster tale and a fools tale as well, and overall, there is a lot of similarity between those. And yet, each culture and it’s values can be glimpsed within each story set.

It makes me wonder about the origin of the Cinderella tale. Some stories might all tie back to a single event no one remembers well, but I highly doubt it’s one of them.

Which fairytale might you tell after Cindy Ellen?

I have a Frogdrick Pierce about half written. And once I think of a name, I have a Snow White partially fleshed out. I’m also considering points for Rumpelstiltskin and Rapunzel. I even have a Hansel and Gretel tale bouncing around on the edges of my brain.

There are so many tales out there that could be told. I love the name Frodrick Pierce.

What do you think has had the biggest impact on your writing?

My huge imagination combined with the vast number of books and stories that I’ve read. I also have a gift for taking any situation and randomly coming up with a story to fit it. The biggest negative impact though, is that I can’t spell half of the words that I want to use, so I end up putting in synonyms for them. Spell check has improved my ability to churn out material though.

Random odd fact: I once won a spelling bee and once received the only 100 on a spelling test in my 5th grade classroom. Both time my teacher was speechless.

Rachel Roden is a natural story teller, capable of weaving the most hilarious of fairy tales. She fell in love with the Lone Ranger in her teens, but ended up with a basketball referee instead. Together, she and the Ref homeschool their four children in the Piney Woods of East Texas, as well as any other odd kid who ends up in their house. She might also be the sole human who still uses math after college.

You can connect with Rachel on her blog, twitter, and Pinterest.

 

~Giveaway~

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Other blog stops today:

Knitted By God’s Plan – Twisted Dreams Feature

Morgan Elizabeth Huneke – Rosette Thornbriar Feature

Interviews:

The Destiny of One – Kendra

Reviews:

Reflections of the Heart – Twisted Dreams

The Flowering Vales – Twisted Dreams

Poison Kiss Review and Interview with Edmund

Hey people, I’ve avoided a repeat of yesterday and not left this post until late at night. And I’ve got the titles straight as well. Not that there’s anything wrong now. If you did notice something off before, please just ignore it.

Today’s book is Poison Kiss by Kendra E. Ardnek. It’s a beautifully mixed up retelling with super fun characters.

Everyone knows that Sleeping Beauty’s curse is triggered when she pricks her finger on a spindle and that she is awakened by true love’s kiss … but what happens when the wicked fairy decides to switch things up?

Edmund didn’t mean to put Auralea to sleep, but now it’s up to him and the famous Puss in Boots to figure out how, exactly, a spinning wheel is supposed to awaken her.

 

~My Review~

Poison Kiss is very fun and complex for its length. It’s overflowing with copious references to other fairytales. Puss in Boots is in it. (Not that he wears boots, they’re silly looking and hurt his feet)

The other characters are equally well done. Auralea spends less of the book asleep than some sleeping beauties, so she has a personalty. But the one who really shines is Edmund. He’s not your typical fairytale prince, partly because he’s not a prince at all, and also because there’s time for his character to develop. We also have an enchanter, Auralea’s nurse, and Katrina. The relationship between Katrina and the Enchanter is very fun. And before I forget him there’s also Edmund’s very odd cousin, Dan or Dandelion. He loves potatoes and calls Puss in Boots ‘Kitty’.

The plot is more complex than the basic Sleepy Beauty. At it’s core, the gifts are given, she pricks her finger on her sixteenth birthday, and falls into a sleep until a prince cuts through the briers and wakes her with a kiss. But when it’s the kiss that puts her to sleep, there’s not such a simple solution. The way Kendra lays the story out is masterful. I first read Poison Kiss at the end of last year before it was finished, and the cut off point was quite annoying. I wanted to know what happened next.

The other things that makes me love this book is the theme. I’m not going to tell you what it is, because that’s not how themes work, but it’s got one of my favourite quotes, and is something about true love.

You can add Poison Kiss on Goodreads and preorder on Kindle.

 

~Interview with Edmund~

I’ve interviewed Kendra a couple of times, so when she offered her characters to interview I jumped at that. Then I proceeded to be uninspired and took forever to come up with my questions. But here they are.

Please welcome Edmund, the hero of Poison Kiss.

What’s your favorite type of weather?

Edmund: I like any sort of weather as long as there’s not too much of it. 

What’s the worst fight you’ve ever been in?

I have some pretty … rough cousins, and I was always smaller and weaker than all of them, so I early learned how to stay out of that sort of trouble, and how to use my head when I couldn’t avoid it. None of them are the smartest of people, so I could usually outwit them.

What names or nicknames have you been called throughout your life?

I’m called “Mundy” by the cousins who like me, “Mousy” by those who don’t. My mother used to call me her little mouse or little sparrow, but it’s different when it’s coming from your mother.

What are you great at?

I … really don’t know if there’s anything that I’d strictly say that I’m great at. I’m apprentice to the court physician, though, so I must be doing something right there.

List 3 things that would make you lose your temper.

When I was younger, I’d fly off at the slightest thing, but I’ve worked hard to get my temper into check. At this point, there isn’t much that would get a rise out of me. 

What is your weapon of choice?

I’m a healer, not a fighter. I prefer to outwit the situation and be there to patch people up when it’s done. 

Same here. Fighting is not my thing. Aydel on the other hand is quite different. She’ll fight, then afterwards she’ll patch up the people she likes enough. And she’s better at that than I am.
Are you organized or messy?

I’m organized. Drives my mother nuts, which is one reason that I don’t live with her anymore. 

I’m messy. My mother is tidier. I still live with her.

~About Kendra~

Kendra E. Ardnek is a homeschool graduate who picked up a pen at an early age and never put it down. The eldest of four, she makes her home in the Piney Woods of East Texas with her parents, younger siblings, giant herd of giraffes, and honor guard of nutcrackers.

You can connect with Kendra on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

~Giveaway~

a Rafflecopter giveaway

There’s also an extra giveaway. The person who leaves the most comments during the blog tour will get an early read of The Seven Drawers, Kendra’s retelling of Snow White for the Rooglewood contest, and Cindy Ellen, which is Rosette Thornbriar’s sequel.

So get commenting. Below are the other tour stops of today.

Knitted By God’s Plan – Favorite SB Retellings

Interviews:

Bookish Orchestrations – Rachel

Georgia Politics – Morgan

Books, Braids, and Born Again – Matthew (TD Character)

Reviews:

Shire Reviews – Rosette Thornbriar

Twisted Dreams Mini Review + Interview with Morgan Huneke

Free piece of advice: Write posts for blog tours at least three days in advance. Especially  when you have multiple post or the last possible day you can write it is a Monday.  It’s probably only the beginning of Monday for most you, but it’s quite late here and I’m only just starting this post.

So hello everyone! This is the beginning of the three Sleeping Beauties blog tour. I have posts the next two days as well, so be prepared. There will be much mentioning of fairytales and possibly more late night posts.

Today I have the pleasure of Interviewing Morgan Elizabeth Huneke and reviewing her book Twisted Dreams. Which is a great book. If you like your sci-fi and fantasy mixed, you should read it. If you like funny characters or surprises you should read it. If you like fantasy adventures with political elements you should read all her books.

“I, Calandra, of the Wingans, do bestow upon you, the Princess of Hanover, a gift. You have been given long life. I cannot interfere with that, but when you are sixteen years of age, you will prick your finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and fall into an everlasting sleep.” She stepped closer so that she could be heard only by Liesel and her parents. “Then you will at last see the truth. Be wary. Be wise. Your fate rests upon yourself.”

On her sixteenth birthday, Princess Liesel Rosanna falls victim to a sleeping curse—but wakens in another world, a prisoner of war. As the bait in a trap for her fiancé, the crown prince of Hanover, Liesel longs to escape back to the fairy tale world. The world where she is only wanting a true love’s kiss to set everything to rights.

As situations quickly grow dire, Liesel must choose which story to live, which life is real. The fate of her country rests on her decision.

See I told you it was interesting. Now onto the interview. I asked Morgan a series questions about her favourite things. It’s turned out quite fun.

Welcome to my blog, Morgan. Let’s start this off with a question that fits the tour. What’s your favourite fairytale?

Morgan: I’ve always had this strange fascination for Rumpelstiltskin. I’m really not sure why. Maybe it has something to do with my obsession with spinning and weaving. There’s so much that’s intriguing about Rumpelstiltskin, so much that’s unexplained. Like, why did the miller insist his daughter could spin straw into gold? Why did Rumpelstiltskin want the baby? Why was guessing his name the way she could get out of giving up her child? I feel like you could do so much with that story.

It is fascinating. you just made me wonder why I hadn’t tried mixing Rumpelstiltskin with Rapunzel since Spinning and weaving once were significant in what has become Girl of the Rumours.

Of all your published books, which is your favourite?

Can a parent have a favorite child? Every book is special to me in a different way. I try to choose, and, well, I can’t. I love all seven of them.

I would probably have to say the same. Except I don’t have seven books and none are published.

Favourite food?

That’s a tough one, but I think I’ll go with baked potato soup. Potatoes + milk + cheese + bacon = awesome. I’m a bit of a dairy addict, and I love potatoes. When I cook, potatoes and cheese are almost always involved.

I can never answer that one one either. But that sounds delicious.

Favourite board game?

I’m going with Balderdash, even though these days we usually play with too many people to use the board and just keep score on a sheet of paper instead. It’s a lot of fun, good for a laugh, you find out about some really strange laws and weird movies, and you learn a lot about people and how they think. I always have a good time when we play.

I’ve played that game out of the box only a couple of times. At home we just do it with a dictionary. It is fun.

Favourite book you’ve read in the last few months?

Exiles by Jaye L. Knight. It’s such a good book. Quite an emotional roller coaster, but so good. Every storyline was gripping, there were some twists I didn’t expect, moments that made me sad, moments that made me mad, moments that made me tense, moments that made me extremely happy. Everybody should read Ilyon Chronicles.

Yes, yes, yes! I haven’t read Exiles yet, but I am so looking forward to it. Emotional roller coaster and all.

Favourite character in Twisted Dreams?

Matthew. He’s the crazy one, and he’s just so much fun to write. He’s cast as Matt Smith and inspired by the Eleventh Doctor. He’s also the only one of the main trio who isn’t twitterpated. He’s a great character.

I’m not surprised my that answer. I think Matthew is my favourite as well.

And because I really do want to know, What was the first inspiration for Twisted Dreams?


Well, Rooglewood Press announced that their fairy tale retelling contest was to be Sleeping Beauty and I wanted to enter. I started brainstorming ideas for a twist, one of which was “what if the enchanted sleep is actually a good thing?” From there, it merged with the Doctor Who episode “Amy’s Choice” where the characters keep flipping back and forth between two places and have to figure out what’s real and what’s a dream. I took that concept and ran with it, throwing in BBC Merlin, Star Wars, and Michael Vey for good measure. It’s certainly been quite interesting.

That’s a great premise and I really like where you’ve taken it.

Morgan: Thanks for having me!

It was a pleasure.

Morgan Elizabeth Huneke is a homeschool graduate who lives in Georgia. She has enjoyed creating characters and writing stories since early childhood. Books have always been a big part of her life, never more so than when working at the local library. Her other interests include reading, playing and teaching piano and violin, and politics. She is the author of Across the Stars and The Experiment as well as the Time Captives fantasy trilogy.

You can connect with Morgan on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. And do. I’ve got to know Morgan over the last few years, and I’m really glad to have her as a friend.

~Mini Review~

I have a confession to make. I have a tendency to rush through books and skim them a bit. I catch what I missed on the second pass. However, I’ve not done my second read of Twisted Dreams. So this will be short and a bit spotty.

 

It’s a sound story with fun characters and strong themes.

I love the beginning. It’s told from Leisel’s point of view when she’s a baby. The confusion when she falls asleep only to awaken in another world is very realistic.

The theme of trusting God, not in a prince to rescue is beautiful.

I recommend it.

Add on  Goodreads. Preorder on Kindle so you can get it when it releases in a couple of days.

 

 

Now I must go get my beauty sleep.

A Girl of Rumours snippet

Hey people,

I’m still working my way towards my Camp NaNoWriMo goal. 6 hours to go. I’ll make it. Somehow. Just have to not get distracted by everyone’s pictures from Realm Makers. Or by next months sewing project.

Anyway, I haven’t got a normal blog post. I’ve got ideas simmering, but not time to write them. Some deep stuff. Possibly a super short story I started writing last night. So instead I have a little snippet from what I’m editing at the moment. It needs a lot more work, especially on Joane’s appearance, but I still like it. Enjoy.

 

After a very long minute there was a noise of footsteps from the left. A dark, lithe girl stepped out of the shadows and strode over to them. She looked Aydel up and down with cold, piercing, green eyes.
She turned to Nylf. “So, this is the famed girl of the rumours. She looks like nothing more than a careless rich girl.” He tone was scornful and Aydel took a step backwards.
“She’s more than she looks, Joane,” Nylf said, “She put a knife to my throat and fought her way free of some thugs at the fair. And if you give her a bit of training we’ll have someone worthwhile on our hands.”
Joane’s lip curled. “I’ve heard about that and the rest of your activities that day. You were sloppy and were lucky not to be caught. And it’s Lady Joane to you.” She swiveled round and faced Aydel, hands on her hips. “So Adlayda, welcome to Nowhere. I am Lady Joane. I’m sure ya’ve heard of me.”
Aydel hadn’t, and she didn’t care for the girl’s manner of speaking. “If you want me to answer you, call me Lady Aydel. And what made you a lady? You don’t even look like one. Ladies don’t wear pants.”
“They do when I say so. I’m in charge here. You’ll find your skirts a nuisance, Adlayda and wish you hadn’t said that.”
She turned abruptly and stomped off.

Beautifully Messy Writing Process

This month the Beautiful People is author oriented. Which means you get to read about me instead of my characters.

 

Or more accurately you’ll read about my writing process. And my writing progress really isn’t beautiful. It’s much more of a mess.

 

How do you decide which project to work on?

A mixture of what’s running through my head and what fits my goals. At the moment I’m not feeling hugely motivated on any project, but I’m determined to get Girl of the Rumours into a readable shape.

How long does it usually take you to finish a project?

Months. Not that I’ have finished, finished things. I’ve completed drafts, but they always took months.

Do you have any routines to put you in the writing mood?

Not really, but I tend to listen to music. Instrumental orchestral stuff mostly. Lately I’ve been going for Celtic music.

What time of day do you write best?

Perhaps evening. That might just be because I’m running out of time in the day. Sometimes starting early is great.

Are there any authors you think you have a similar style to?

Not really. I used the ‘I Write Like’ website and for Girl of the Rumours, it said I write like Agatha Christie. But that was only a few chapters. I haven’t found a consistent style yet.

Why did you start writing, and why do you keep writing?

I started writing becuase I had a story to tell and realized it could be done. I keep going because I enjoy it, I don’t want to be a quitter and God doesn’t seem to be directing me away from it.

What’s the hardest thing you’ve written?

Hard means it’s a scene that drags. Or has difficult emotions. Conflict with parents is something I find both hard to write and hard to read. The scene is was working on yesterday fit’s into all of that. Probably a bunch more scenes do. It’s all a bit of a blur months later.

Is there a project you want to tackle someday but you don’t feel ready yet?

I don’t feel all that ready for any of my projects. But honestly, I wan tot get more experienced before I get back to Lady of Courage (which has a new name coming along sometime). I felt when I was first wriitng it that the political intrigue was beyond me, and it’s got a lot of gaps. I also want to attempt a serial on the blog, but haven’t had the time to figure it out.

What writing goals did you make for 2017 and how are they going?

I put this for my goal on the Holy Worlds forum.

I’m afraid to make to many big goals, because so many thing could happen in a year to derail them. Also I just started planning out a new project that’s going to slow things down.
That said, I want to get Girl of the Rumours into the hands of a few critiquers by August. If I really focus on my editing I could have it sooner, but I want tot get other things moving along too. The first draft of Lady of Courage should be finished end of next month at the latest.

I don’t know if I’ve really finished  Lady of Courage, but I’ve done as much as I’m going to. Girl of the Rumours won’t be ready for critiquers in August unless I only give them the first part. I still hope to have it mostly by mid September. And the new project is coming along.

Describe your writing process in 3 words or a gif

Write. Sigh. Rewrite.

 

Check out the rest of the link up at paperfury.com or furtherupfurtherin.net.

 

A-Z Bookish Tag

I borrowed this tag from Kendra E. Ardnek who stole it from Rachel Rossano.

1. Author You’ve Read the Most Books from:

Definitely Martha Finley. There’s 28 Elsie books and another 7 Mildred books which I own. There’s also a handful of obscure standalones that I can still highly recommend. Wanted: A Pedigree, Signing the Contract and What it Cost, and The Thorn in the Nest are the best of them. The last of those has a male lead and a complex secret. None of them have a perfect child for the MC.

(After writing this I realized, that the correct answer is Enid Blyton. I read 60 – 80 books by here back in the day. It’s almost scary.)

2. Best Sequel Ever:
I’ve got to say the same as Kendra. The King’s Scrolls by Jaye L. Knight.  It’s my favourite book of one of my favourite series. I’ll add in a second of The First Traitor by Laura Campbell. It did everything I hoped for, and both of these sequels almost broke my heart.
3. Currently Reading:
Our Intrepid Heroine by Ness Kingsley. I need to finish it, but I was getting my brothers to read it aloud in the car and I haven’t taken them anywhere for a few weeks.4. Drink of Choice While Reading:
I don’t really drink while reading. But water is my primary drink.

5. E-reader or Physical Book:

Physical book. Though I don’t actually have an e-reader, so I use my phone instead. Price means I read a lot more e-books.

6. Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated in High School:
I didn’t go to highschool and I didn’t date. (Attention from boys made me avoid them) But I would have like to be friends with Reuben from Kendra’s Lady Dragon Tela Du. (or maybe not). Also Hank Coolidge from the Starlight Animal Rescue series by Dandi Daley Mackall. Her books were my favourite for a time.

7. Glad You Gave This Book a Chance:

I could list so many books here. Yet, I rarely read a book I really doubt I’ll enjoy. But I almost never got around to reading Ellie Burton and the Reflective Portals which I won in a giveaway, and found it a decent book. It was aimed at a slightly younger audience, so it’s not my favourite, but that wasn’t why I almost didn’t read it.
8. Hidden Gem Book:
The Magician’s Daughter by Justyn Walker. It’s portal fantasy, very quirky, very good allegory.  Unfortunately, being self published in Australia, it’s really had to come by physical copies in the rest of the world. It’s available on Kindle, (as The Wanderer’s Daughter) but the sequels aren’t. If they were I’d try to promote them more, but as it is, it’s kind of pointless.
9. Important Moment in Your Reading Life:
I was somewhere between 7 and 9 when I first started reading a chapter book on my own. It was The Prodigal Cat by Janette Oke. I started reading it aloud to Mum. Next morning I was reading it before breakfast. I haven’t been able to stop since.10. Just Finished:
Third Daughter by Susan Kaye Quinn. It’s Indian inspired steampunk and I’m writing steampunk that might have a little element of Indian culture. I like it, but probably not enough the buy the other books. (It was free)

11. Kinds of Books You Won’t Read:
Erotica or anything heading that way. Anything with romance as the sole plot. Terribly written books. Anything that glorifies evil.

12. Longest Book You’ve Read:
I’m not at all sure, but Queechy by Susan Warner is near the top of the list. It’s over 25 hours in audio. If I can count nonfiction, I’ve got a lot of possible options.  Macauley’s History of England winning at 100+ hours of audio. It’s five books though.

13. Major Book Hangover Because Of:
I don’t really get book hangovers. But I walked around smiling for a week after reading Samara’s Peril by Jaye L. Knight.14. Number of Bookcases You Own:
Two. Though one’s only partly full and I have a bunch of books on another shelf in the house.  I borrow the libararies shelves and money too.

15. One Book You Have Read Multiple Times:

One book?!? What is this one book? I used to often read a book twice in a row because I would miss things the first time. I still do frequently. But I’ll pick Water Princess, Fire Prince. I read that again straight after beta reading and gave Kendra more feedback. And then read it again just before she sent me an updated version to read before the release.
16. Preferred Place to Read:
Anywhere is fine. Bedroom is common. Outdoors is great given sutable weather.17. Quote that Inspires You/Gives You the Feels from a Book You’ve Read:

“We will stand for what is right, and good, and true. We will protect and aid each other and all those Elôm brings into our path. We will remain faithful to Him, even when it may cost us our lives, and we will stand firm against the evil that will soon surround us. We will not back down. Each of us, right here, right now—we are the resistance.”
Last paragraph from Resistance by Jaye L. Knight.

18. Reading Regret:

I once read a sequel to The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnet. It was unfortunately not a childrens book at all. And The Secret Garden doesn’t even need a sequel. I don’t remember the name, but don’t ever read it. It’s the book that makes me wish books had clearer ratings. I didn’t realize because it was filed as ‘Large Print’, not adult. Not that I didn’t read any books that were aimed more at adults at that age, but I might have been wary. ( clarification: this book was by another author)

19. Series You’ve Started and Need to Finish (All books are out in the series):

I’d like to finish the Follower of the Word Series by Morgan Busse someday. And the Dark Trench Saga by Kerry Neitz.

20. Three of Your All-Time Favorite Books:

Lady Dragon, Tela Du by Kendra E. Ardnek, The Ryn by Serena Chase, Deliver by Trica Mingerink.

21. Unapologetic Fangirl For:
The Ilyon Chronicles, The Rizkaland Legends, The  27th Protector Series, and various other books as the occasion arises.22. Very Excited for This Release More than All the Others:
Exiles by Jaye L. Knight.  I’m making myself wait to get a physical copy though.

23. Worst Bookish Habit:

Getting all the free books. Also skimming to get though books faster.
24. X Marks the Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:
Trouble in a Fur Coat by Janette Oke. It’s also the last book on the top shelf. Next shelf has writing books.
25. Your Latest Book Purchase:
I just preordered Spellsmith and Carver 2 by H. L. Burke26. ZZZ-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late):

 I stayed up pretty late the last two night writing. So I’ll say Girl of the Rumours.
And that’s that. Feel free to take this tag. After all, I did.

White Dawn: Review and Giveaway

Continue reading

Beautiful People: Cassia


The year is 1776; the world is a different one. I am sitting in a dim room that feels like an attic, though it’s hard to be certain. You are sitting with me, though not actually there. You’re more inside my head than anywhere else. Neither of us are exactly sure how we got here, but we know why. There’s one another person in the room. A blond girl wearing practical clothes and a serious expression is sitting on a low chair in front of me. Her name is Cassia Rerdbin and I’m supposed to be interviewing her. She doesn’t seem surprised or unwilling, but refuses to let me make any record of what we say. That’s what you’re here for, to help me remember.

I’ve been chatting with her for a little while now, but nothing of substance has come up. “Have you travelled much?” I ask her.

Cassia shakes her head. “Not unless you count exploring the streets of Delman travelling.”

“Exploring a city sounds like fun. What’s your favourite place to visit there?”

She leans her hand on her hand meditatively. “The parkland. We have been boating on the river several times and it was so peaceful. Much more natural than the artificially crowdedness of the rest of the city.”

I nod and move on to the next question. “What’s one mistake in your life that you’ve learned from?”

Cassia wrinkles her nose. “Are not you supposed to start with easy questions? If this is how you do an official interview, you’re terrible at it. But I will try to answer. It is hard though. Unless I want to be ungrateful and whine about the opportunities I have been given, I’ve only really made small mistakes.”

I laugh. “Small mistakes are fine Cassia. You can still learn things from them, even if it’s forgetting to set an alarm while cooking.”

“Set an alarm while cooking?” Cassia echoes. “What would you want to do that for?”

“It’s complicated, and would distract me from talking to you,” I offer. I figure it must be a cross cultural miscommunication. Those happen sometimes.

“Oh. Well I made a few dreadful mistakes when I was learning to sew. Sometimes It’s hard to tell the backs and fronts apart. Fortunately, we mostly do alterations.”

“So, you studied sewing here at the school. What else did you study? Any favourites?”

Cassia smiles. “There’s so many amazing things to study and a lot of freedom. I especially enjoyed traditions and law. There’s such a vast array of examples. There is also wonderful art.” She drops her voice almost to a whisper. “It almost makes back to the drawbacks of studying here.”

I’d like to ask her more about those drawbacks, but it’s not on our list and we’ve been discouraged from asking about the school for an undisclosed reason. So, I move onto the next question.

“Did you study plants at all? I’m supposed to ask you about your favourite flower?”

Yes, we both know that could be smoother, but it doesn’t really matter.

“I doubt you know them, but there’s an Erint tree here at the school. It came from Trerike, which is my fatherland. They are very pretty trees too, and the leaves are good for medicine.”

I smile. “Very nice. Trees have a more enduring beauty than flowers. I could dream about them. What about you? Anything particular you dream about at night?”

Cassia looks down and fumbles with her hands. She’s seems rather bothered, I’m surprised. We thought this was an easy question when we discussed it earlier.

“I- I have bad dreams,” Cassia whispers, “I keep dreaming about magic. Something terrible happens and I’m caught in the middle.”

I reach out and squeeze her hand. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have asked.”

“No, it’s alright. You couldn’t have known.”

I nod. “I’ll move onto a cheerful question. What would you choose to eat if you went out for a special meal?”

“Whatever was recommended.” Cassia laughs and shakes her head. “Sorry, I’m not a food person really.”

“That’s fine. What’s one thing you want to do before you die?”

“Move to Trerike. I have wished we lived there since I was 10. I would also like to travel to some famous libraries.”

“You’re a study freak, aren’t you?” I ask.

“I wouldn’t call myself a freak, but I certainly love to study.” Cassia leans back in her chair and sighs. “Learning is my life. I just hope it will not be my death.”

“Any other special talents?”

“Writing is part of academia, but I consider myself reasonably skilled at it. I like presenting an argument.”

“Debating then? Have you ever argued hard enough to make any one cry?” I’m glad to get that opportunity to slip the question in. It could otherwise be rather sensitive.

Cassia shakes her head. “I don’t like open disagreement and debate isn’t my thing. I’d be more likely to cry myself than make someone else cry.”

“You must be a nice person to be around then. This is pretty much the end of the interview. I’d love to stick around, but I don’t have the time. I just need you to confirm the veracity of your answers. Not that you’d lie about them, but it’s a formality.”

Cassia nodded. “I understand formalities. And I promise that was all true. Some say I might be biased in my research, but I would never lie in an interview.”

“Well it was nice meeting you. I have a suspicion I’ll see you again someday, but farewell for now.”

“The same.”

Cassia smiles and the room fades from our view. The white page of my blog appears behind it.

 

~The End

 

This interview is based off the questions from Beautiful People by Cait and Sky. Stop by paperfury.com or furtherupfurtherin.net to see other people talk about or to their characters.

Sleeping Beauty Tales Thrice Revealed

 

After missing a weeks post, here I am again with a second post this week and a third may be coming. I have it pretty much written, but had to put it off to tell you about other people’s books. This time It’s a cover reveal. For three books. Three Sleeping Beauty retellings, all by people I know. They’re all coming out on August 7th. You can look out for more updates here.

And now on with the covers. After that, I’m sharing a few of my favourite Sleeping Beauty retellings.

 

~Poison Kiss~

 

Everyone knows that Sleeping Beauty’s curse is triggered when she pricks her finger on a spindle and that she is awakened by true love’s kiss … but what happens when the wicked fairy decides to switch things up?

Edmund didn’t mean to put Auralea to sleep, but now it’s up to him and the famous Puss in Boots to figure out how, exactly, a spinning wheel is supposed to awaken her.

~

I’ve was privileged to read some of Poison Kiss even before the story was finished and wished I had the whole things. Later when Kendra had the whole book done, I read the whole thing and loved it. It’s fun, quirky and surprisingly deep.

You can add Poison Kiss on Goodreads and preorder it on Amazon.

 

Kendra E. Ardnek is a homeschool graduate who picked up a pen at an early age and never put it down. The eldest of four, she makes her home in the Piney Woods of East Texas with her parents, younger siblings, giant herd of giraffes, and honor guard of nutcrackers.  She’s also a generally fun person to know.

You can and should connect with Kendra on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. She has a lot of pictures pinned for future books and I always enjoy trying to puzzle them out. But she makes it tricky.

~Twisted Dreams~

 

“I, Calandra, of the Wingans, do bestow upon you, the Princess of Hanover, a gift. You have been given long life. I cannot interfere with that, but when you are sixteen years of age, you will prick your finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and fall into an everlasting sleep.” She stepped closer so that she could be heard only by Liesel and her parents. “Then you will at last see the truth. Be wary. Be wise. Your fate rests upon yourself.”

On her sixteenth birthday, Princess Liesel Rosanna falls victim to a sleeping curse—but wakens in another world, a prisoner of war. As the bait in a trap for her fiancé, the crown prince of Hanover, Liesel longs to escape back to the fairy tale world. The world where she is only wanting a true love’s kiss to set everything to rights.

As situations quickly grow dire, Liesel must choose which story to live, which life is real. The fate of her country rests on her decision.

~

I don’t know much about this story, but it’s enough that I’m very intrigued. I think it’s going to become my favourite of Morgan’s books.

Add Twisted Dreams on Goodreads. Preorder it on Amazon.

Morgan Elizabeth Huneke is a homeschool graduate who lives in Georgia. She has enjoyed creating characters and writing stories since early childhood. Books have always been a big part of her life, never more so than when working at the local library. Her other interests include reading, playing and teaching piano and violin, and politics. She is the author of Across the Stars and The Experiment as well as the Time Captives fantasy trilogy.

You can connect with Morgan on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

 

~Rosetta Thornbriar~

Once upon a time, way out west…

Back when they were young’uns, Fleur Guardstone proposed to Rosette Thornbriar with a cigar band ring. However, not long after, she disappeared back into the forest and hadn’t been heard from since. However, when Fleur hears reports of smoke coming from that woods, he’s determined to find out if it is, indeed, his dear Rosette. If he can get past all of the briars.

~

This is a western. As I read westerns on odd occasions, and fairytale retellings reasonably often. I think I’ll check this out. Or at least stick it on my list.

You can add Rosette Thornbriar on Goodreads and preorder it on Amazon.

 

Rachel Roden is a natural story teller, capable of weaving the most hilarious of fairy tales. She fell in love with the Lone Ranger in her teens, but ended up with a basketball referee instead. Together, she and the Ref homeschool their four children in the Piney Woods of East Texas, as well as any other odd kid who ends up in their house. She might also be the sole human who still uses math after college. She also happens to be Kendra’s mom.

You can connect with Rachel on her blog, twitter, and Pinterest.

~My Favourites~

It’s been a while since I’ve read Waking Beauty, but it’s beautifully written, thought provoking, and a bit terrifying (maybe an oxymoron, but it fits). Recommended if you can handle reading about nightmares and the less nice types of fairytale magic.

The Healer’s Apprentice is historical romance and doesn’t have the iconic elements of Sleeping Beauty stories, but it’s a sweet story.

 

This book of Kendra’s is more tha a Sleeping Beauty story, but that what it started as. Since it’s the first book of a series, Kendra has it free many times. But it is now permamatly free on Smashwords. Check it out here.

And that’s that. Don’t forget that there’s three new books coming out on August 7th.

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