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Character Interview: Tommy Dana from Leif and Jason Grundstrom-Whitney’s Young Adult Fiction Novel ‘The Hidden Chalice of the Cloud People’

authorphotoWe’re thrilled to have here today Tommy Dana from Leif and Jason Grundstrom-Whitney’s new Young Adult Fiction Novel, The Hidden Chalice of the Cloud People. Tommy Dana is a thirteen year old student living in Bangor, Maine.

It is a pleasure to have him with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so for this interview, Tommy Dana. Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

Well, they did portray me as pretty much a wimp at first! Seriously though, I don’t have any qualms about the way I was portrayed as I build strength over time through the many adventures that I go through with and without my formerly fictional companion and erstwhile bodyguard Shannon O’Neil. This brings up a great question about strength though. In western culture we are so fixated on the external. We seem to give lavish praise to those who appear to be Adonis-like in stature without giving credit to people that are truly strong on multiple levels, like Gandhi or the Clan Mothers of the Native side of my heritage. So here you have a kid (little old me) who is physically weak (at first) but has this indomitable character and iron will that helps him to carry forth, using wit, intelligence, and mental fortitude to examine the issues within the various intertwining stories and help to creatively problem solve them to a vaguely satisfying resolution. I really think that history tells of what strength truly is. For instance, Abraham Lincoln was immensely physically strong by all accounts, but what is he known for? His greatly persuasive rhetoric, powerful speeches and strength of character led America through its darkest days. That is what he will always be known for.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality? If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

I feel these authors did a pretty good job at making my character fully HD. That’s high definition for the technologically impaired amongst you. Some of it was cringe worthy and downright embarrassing, as far as characterization goes, but overall, the authors (frustrating and mystical creatures that they are) did a commendable job showing my insecurities and positive attributes and periods of doubt and bravery and courage and also the gradual uncomfortable process of my evolution as a character.

Ebook - JPG format-.jpgWhat do you believe is your strongest trait?

I believe it must be the strength of my will and the power of my creative identity (the industriousness of my imagination). At times, sheer determination and resourceful imaginativeness were all that I had to fall back on. My creativity was able to flourish, once given license, so as to problem solve my way out of these very tight situations that allowed no margin of error.

Worse trait?

The timorousness (a loathsome characteristic of my personality!) that frequently drains my resolve of its firmness is my worst trait.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

I think it would have to be an up-and-coming star much in the vein of the outstanding performance that Keisha Castle-Hughes gave in the movie “Whale Rider”. Obviously it would have to be a male teenager though. This book, my world entire, is so modestly original and takes so many twists that it would be nice to have a fresh face, not jaundiced by the fame and fortune of the industry and the monotony of similar roles, portray the central role in its big screen rendition.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Maybe, it is quite possible. Can someone love a fictional person who turns out of to be a lot realer than expected? Can true affection breach the lines between reality and imagination? Can an inter-dimensional mutual adoration thrive? If the answer to these questions is “yes”, then I would have say that I do perhaps have a love interest in the book. I can’t imagine seeing a sunset or a sunrise or the variety of the seasons and the change that goes with them, without an image of her enshrined in my heart, if that’s what you mean.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

I became very nervous and doubtful of my chances of success when I first realized the sheer enormity of the quest I had willingly tumbled into and what that world-hopping adventure would demand of me.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

If I could trade places with anyone, I would avoid the character of my nemesis Facinorous, the arch antagonist of the sprawling scene in which I was set, like the plague. He’s a bottomless abyss of devious intent and nefariousness. Who would want to be the filthy harvester of the innocent imaginations of humanity? It would be an absolute nightmare to be trapped in the mind of a nebulous ultra-powerful entity that lacks an authentic imagination. Plus, because of his rampant magniloquence, I can hardly ever understand what he’s saying.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

I feel that the ending is a little too short. I would even go so far as to say that it is remarkable in its abruptness. The authors seemed a little too preoccupied with setting up the sequel. They should have invested more time instead in making a satisfying conclusion. It is a flaw common to the genre. Perhaps they were spoofing that convention. Who knows? The book I am featured in is a satire, after all.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if they decided to write another book with you in it?

For the love of the heavenly landlords of the cosmos, go easy on me next time! Seriously, I have no idea what these two authors have in store for me with their feverish creativity. I will offer a tiny suggestion though. Could you give me a break once in a while?! I am picturing a pacing similar to Proust so maybe I can ease into the peculiarities of being me once in a while.

Thank you for this interview, Tommy Dana. Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

Thank you for the opportunity. Yes, you will most definitely be seeing more of me in the future. The authors are hell-bent on prolonging my suffering and misery. I am to be the main character in three upcoming sequels. Pray for my deliverance!

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Leif Grundstrom-Whitney is the proud co-author of the epical satire The Hidden Chalice of the Cloud People; the wicked and witty character known as Facinorous contained therein is a product of his multifarious mind. He has been published in several obscure poetry journals (hold your applause). To say that he is an edacious reader would be an understatement worthy of Hemingway. If he had a spirit animal, it would probably be a raven who knows how to play a Hammond B-3 organ.

Jason Grundstrom-Whitney has been a Social Worker and Substance Abuse Counselor in the State of Maine for many years. In this time, he has introduced meditation (tai-chi, qigong, yoga, and meditation) groups to teens when told he would fail. This was one of the most successful and long lasting groups. He developed a Civil Rights/Peer Helper course that won state and national awards (for High School) and has worked as a civil rights activist. He has also worked as a long term care social worker and now works as a Hospice Medical Social Worker. Jason is a poet, writer, and musician playing bass, harmonica and various wind instruments. Lover of all styles of music he has played classical, jazz, rock, funk, country, blues, and rap. He is very excited to play bass with his brother’s band and his son’s. He is very proud to have co-authored The Hidden Chalice of the Cloud People with his son Leif.

Book description:

The Hidden Chalice of the Cloud People is a young adult fantasy comedy novel written by a father and son writing duo for an intelligent general audience. It is the first book in an upcoming tetralogy. It is a darkly humorous, fast-paced, action-packed celebratory unification of the world’s rich cultural lore through the lens of an inventive fantasy concept that stands both as an occasionally subversive satire that satirizes the YA genre and an anachronistic experiment on the fusion of storyline narratives (differing stylistically and compositionally).

When Tommy Dana is abducted into a fantastical realm called Lethia, where the worthy stories of humanity are granted a physical reality, the social media-averse thirteen year old must plunge through a multi-varied meta-fictional adventure in order to save his, and the entire human world’s, imagination from falling into the thieving clutches of the witty supernatural villain Facinorous.

On the Spotlight: Somewhere I Belong, by Glenna Jenkins

SYNOPSIS

In Somewhere I Belong, we meet young P.J. Kavanaugh at North Boston Station. His father has died, the Depression is on, and his mother is moving them back home. They settle in, and P.J. makes new friends. But the P.E.I. winter is harsh, the farm chores endless, and his teacher a drunken bully. He soon wants to go home; the problem is how.

A letter arrives from Aunt Mayme announcing a Babe Ruth charity baseball game in the old neighbourhood. But Ma won’t let him go. P.J is devastated. The weeks pass, then there is an accident on the farm. P.J. becomes a hero and Ma changes her mind. He travels to Boston, sees his friends, watches Babe Ruth hit a home run, and renews his attachment to the place. But his eagerness to return to the Island makes him wonder where he really belongs.

PURCHASE

 
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Glenna’s Website / Goodreads / LinkedIn


I am a writer, editor and indexer who lives in historic Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. A true Maritimer, I was born and raised in Nova Scotia and my Prince Edward Island roots hail back to 1830. My short stories have been published in Jilted Angels: A Collection of Short Stories (Broad Street Press), and Riptides: New Island Fiction (Acorn Press Canada), the latter which was nominated for best Atlantic book of 2012 and won the 2013 Prince Edward Island Book Award. In addition to placing first in the 2014 Atlantic Writing Competition’s literary non-fiction category, I received a mentorship from the Writers Federation of Nova Scotia to study under award-winning writer, William Kowalski. I am also a graduate of the Humber School for Writers, where I studied novel writing under two-time Governor General Award winner, David Adams Richards. My first novel, Somewhere I Belong, is based on a true story and was released on November 1, 2014 by Acorn Press Canada.

As a published author and fiction writer, I offer developmental writing services, coaching, and copy editing, structural editing to emerging writers of fiction and non-fiction in short-story, novel or book format. As an editor, I revise scholarly works written by academics whose first language is not English and who wish to complete their master’s theses, PhD dissertations, or publish in English-language academic journals. I also completed an indexing course at the University of California at Berkeley and index books on economics, politics, history, and topics of general interest.

Brought to you by Worldwind VBT

Character Interview: Savannah Evans from Gary Rodriguez’s Tween/YA Adventure Novel, ‘Escape Through The Wilderness’

Escape Through the Wilderness coverThank you so much for this interview, Savi.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I do think I was portrayed fairly and accurately throughout the book.  I believe I am a strong and compassionate person who values friendships and holds deep spiritual convictions.  The book did a good job of showing my inclination toward leadership, my passion for faith, and my feelings about friendships.  The story also revealed why I’ve been carrying some deep hurt inside of me the last several months.

I’d also like to make sure the readers know that I feel badly about what I did to Jade during the elk stampede.  Especially, after I found out all she’d been through before arriving at Camp Arrowhead. I wish there was a way I could take that moment back.  That was a real low point for me.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

I’d have to say my faith.  Some people are ashamed to let others know they believe in God and read the Bible.  I’m not ashamed of that at all. As a matter of fact, I’m proud of it.

Life is full of challenges.  When I face trouble, I know where to turn for help.  It has always been a comfort to know that I don’t have to face life’s difficulties alone.

In today’s culture, being a Christian, especially from the South, often has a stigma attached to it.  But I love who I am and where I’m from, and I’m grateful for my conservative southern upbringing.  But I try not to be a “preachy” person.  I think it’s more important to live out what I believe than just to talk about it.  That said, when my friends ask me questions about my faith, then I’m happy to share with them.

Worse trait?

I get impatient at times.  My impatience was evident when I thought Jade was asking me too many questions during a particularly trying situation.

When I look back on the incident I know she was just scared, like we all were, and needed some help and reassurance.  I could have handled myself a lot better.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part, if your book were made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

The most important thing for me is that the actress portrayed my faith and values accurately.  That would ensure they would represent me, in a way, that is credible and in keeping with who I am.

If I had to pick a random person I’ve never met, I think I’d choose either Shailene Woodley, an American actress, starring in Divergent or Ella Purnell, an English actress, you may have seen in Maleficent.

They’re both great actresses, and I’d be honored to have either of them choose to play me in the movie version of Escape Through The Wilderness.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

Honestly, I was nervous from the time we started the river-rafting trip, especially after the accident.  It was very scary for the four of us to be alone in the wilderness and so far away from camp.  But things really got bad after Rico and Conner got hurt.  That’s when I started to think “there’s no way we’re going to make it back to camp alive.” However, I decided it was best to keep those thoughts to myself.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

I think I’d have to say Conner.  When I first met him, he was a bully, and I detest bullies.  Then he seemed weak and ineffective when we got in trouble on the river.  Eventually, he changed into someone I actually liked.  But if I had to choose, he’s the one I’d least want to be.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

It was a difficult but awesome ending.  It leaves readers uncertain about the outcome until the last few pages.  It’s one of those dramatic and suspenseful endings that I wouldn’t change for the world.  I’m convinced that readers will love it.  There’s no way you can guess how things will turn out.  Even I was fooled.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if he decided to write another book with you in it?

Create another thrilling adventure. Escape Through The Wilderness was so exciting and intense.  I’d like to see the sequel match the level of intensity found in the first book.  I think readers will expect that.  I happen to know the author quite well, and he listens to my input.  I’ll make sure he makes the sequel at least as good as Escape Through The Wilderness.

Thank you for this interview, Savi.  Will we see more of you in the future?

I’m not trying to be elusive, but you’ll have to read the first book to find out.  I will say this is the first book in the series. Look for the second book sometimes around the summer of 2015.

Before I go, I want to thank you for taking time to interview me.  I hope your readers enjoy the book.

Finally, Escape Through The Wilderness is the kind of book that was written to impact and inspire readers.  If you read the book and enjoy it, please consider buying a copy for a friend. Good friends have given me several of my favorite books.  Sharing a good story is a special way to bless someone.

Thanks again for your time.

Savi Evans

Gary Rodriguez

 

Gary Rodriguez is president of LeaderMetrix Inc., a consulting company that specializes in senior-level executive coaching, organizational development and conflict resolution. He is the author of the new adventure novel Escape through the Wilderness scheduled for release in June 2014. 

His first book Purpose-Centered Public Speaking was an instant hit and recently republished by Tate Publishing. 

His extensive resume includes eighteen years as an executive in the radio business where he spent several years as one of the original managers of Infinity Broadcasting. He was twice nominated as medium market manager of the year by the Bobby Poe report, a national media publication. 

For over thirty-five years, Gary has spoken in public both nationally and internationally.  Gary’s resume includes a season in the U.S. Army where he was highly decorated as the youngest Drill Instructor in the Army’s history at age 18 years. He was also awarded the Silver Star (the nation’s third highest award for valor) while serving in Viet Nam.

For more information about Escape Through The Wilderness please visit: http://ettw.tateauthor.com or http://leadermetrix.com/authorspeaker/

Character Interview: Arkas from K. Madill’s YA Fantasy Novel ‘The Stolen Herd’ – Win $25 Amazon Gift Card

We’re thrilled to be talking to Arkas from Green Forest, Deep Forest, The Silver City, Harshlands, Azure Caves, Elphinstone Mountains…hey, he has wings – he gets around.


Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00068]Thank you so much for this interview, Arkas.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

Arkas: It was moderately accurate. She (the author) missed how utterly terrified Mandamus and Luco were when we first met. It was their own fault. They blundered into my territory, so I attacked them. It was written a little more comically than it actually was. Those two were scared out of their minds.  I thought that human, Luco, was going to cry and Mandamus may look like a big, tough horse but he was shaking in his hooves.  

What do you believe is your strongest trait? 

Arkas: My strength, agility, wingspan, and fighting skills.  Not to mention …I can breathe fire!

Worse trait?

Arkas: Well, I have been called short tempered. But I don’t see that as a bad thing at all.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

Arkas: Probably… Christian Bale. He was a pretty darn good Batman…and seeing as I’m an actual bat, I feel the transition would go smoothly.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out? 

Arkas: I must admit, I did get a little worried when we were attached by Aicha, that dirty slug of a water imp. I wasn’t sure I could take him by myself, he’s pretty quick.  Just in the nick of time, Gideon showed up and helped me out, thank goodness.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Arkas: I definitely would not want to be Luco.  Alright, granted, for a human he’s not that bad…but he has only two legs and can’t fly.  He also doesn’t have the nerve to tell that naiad, Lethe, that he likes her. Even after he built her that glass room at the Gates to the Underworld!  He just hangs around mooning over her until Mandamus’ hoof heals, then we leave. Pathetic, if you ask me. I might have to do a little matchmaking there.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

Arkas: Hey, Luco may be complaining because he’s afraid of getting eaten, but I’m full on ready to journey to the Azure Caves to see King Farzad and the rest of the Snowbreth tribe.  They’re supposedly man-eating monsters, but Gideon wouldn’t have sent us there if that was the case. I will tell you this though – if they do try anything, they’ll be sorry!

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

Arkas: If? I’m one of the three main characters of this story so she’d BETTER have me in it.  Hmm…words of wisdom….well, I would like to get back to Luco’s village for more cherry stars and fire whiskey though that’s more of a suggestion, I guess.

Thank you for this interview, Arkas. Will we be seeing more of you in the future? 

Arkas: Of course. Those two (Mandamus and Luco) couldn’t last a day without me. Why, you should see what those dunderheads got themselves into just last week. Only, you’ll have to wait for the 2nd book to find out – ha!

Purchase on AMAZON

Karai MadillA chronic “head in the cloudser” K. Madill lives in a rickety house on a well treed street in British Columbia, Canada.  When she’s not hanging out with her best equine friend in the woods she can be found trying to stay upright on her roller skates or mediating the affairs of her various furred and feathered friends that rule the aforementioned rickety house. 

K. Madill’s website: kmadill.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/K-Madill/161159890706088

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KaraiMadill1

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20643483-the-stolen-herd

Pump Up Your Book and K. Madill are teaming up to give away

a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms and conditions:

  • By entering, you confirm you are 18 years of age or older.
  • Raffle runs from 12:00 AM EST on June 2 through 12:00 AM EST on June 28, 2014.
  • Winner will be selected randomly by Rafflecopter.
  • Winner will be notified by email and has 72 hours to claim the prize before a new winner is selected.
  • Prize will be sent via email from the author’s representative.
  • VOID WHERE PROHIBITED.

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Character Interview: Maggie & Matty Becker from Alison Bruce & Kat Flannery’s historical romance, HAZARDOUS UNIONS

We’re thrilled to have here today Maggie and Matty from Alison Bruce and Kat Flannery’s new historical romance, Hazardous Unions. Maggie and Matty are twins sisters, age 18. They were separated by the Civil War. Maggie’s employer served with the Confederate Army. Matty’s employer stayed with the Union.

It is a pleasure to have them with us today at Beyond the Books!

Bruce-HU-400Thank you so for this interview, Maggie and Matty.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

Maggie: First I would like to thank you for bringing us together, though I understand it is only temporary. It seems like an age since I saw Matty and I have missed her so much.

I suppose Miss Bruce was fair enough in her telling my story. I think she makes me seem as if I was more in charge of the situation than I really was. But then Captain Stone keeps saying I’m officer material and that’s plain silly.

Matty: Oh, yes thank you kindly for having my sister and I here. I’ve missed her so.

I’m quite satisfied with Miss. Flannery’s portrayal of me however, I do wish she’d have kept out the part where I drugged Colonel Black.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

Maggie: Miss Bruce did a fine job, but I can’t help wondering why she thought I would make a good subject when the rich and beautiful Patience was also available.

Matty: I feel Miss. Flannery could’ve added more about how much I read. You know I love Mr. Poe, Mag and I really thought she could’ve added more about that.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

Maggie: I’m practical. I’m not the sort of young lady requires men to lay down their cloaks so they can step over puddles.

Matty: I’m giving. Pa taught us to love one another.

Worse trait?

Maggie: I’m practical. I’m not the sort of young lady that lay their cloaks down for.

Matty: Well, if you read the book I have a tendency to over embellish the truth.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

Maggie: I am very sorry, but your question makes no… oh wait, like a stage play? I cannot answer that but Miss Bruce says that I look a lot like an actress named Haylie Duff.

Matty: Maggie, I’m not sure I know what the question means. What is a television?

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Maggie: That is a rather personal question… I suppose you mean Captain Seth Stone.

Matty: Colonel Cole Black is quite handsome, but he has a nasty temper.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

Maggie: I was nervous before the story began, from the moment we heard the Yankees were coming. It doesn’t matter that I’m a Yankee by birth and inclination, the family I was employed to take care of was on the Confederate side and the Major was languishing in a Union prison. I was deathly afraid I wouldn’t be able to keep the major’s wife and daughter safe.

Matty: On the second attempt on my life. I didn’t think Miss Flannery would ever get me out of the trouble I’d gotten caught up in.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Maggie: I truly would not want to be poor Nate Wentworth. What I put that man through to keep him safe. (giggles)

Matty: Oh, I wouldn’t want to be Mrs. Worthington. She is an awful women with a strong disregard for anyone who is not white.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

Maggie: I would be happier if Miss Bruce or Miss Flannery brought Matty and I together but I know we’ll be together eventually. Other than that, I am content with how things are left. Very content.

Matty: I agree, Mag. I would have loved to been reunited but all in all I’m quite happy with the ending.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

Maggie: I would truly like it if Miss Bruce found a happy ending for Thaddeus and I hope I am there to see it. Perhaps she’ll make me a little less practical and a bit more romantic, like Matty.

Matty: Please, have my sister in it. Maybe we could go on an adventure together. Oh, what trouble we would find.

Thank you for this interview, Maggie and Matty.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

Maggie: If it requires another dangerous adventure… Maybe.

Matty: Oh, I don’t know. I’m quite content to settle down and have a family.

———————————————————

SUMMARY:

Twin sisters separated by war, bound by love…

After the death of their father, twin sisters Maggie and Matty Becker are forced to take positions with officers’ families at a nearby fort. When the southern states secede, the twins are separated, and they find themselves on opposite sides of America’s bloodiest war.

In the south, Maggie travels with the Hamiltons to Bellevue, a plantation in west Tennessee. When Major Hamilton is captured, it is up to Maggie to hold things together and deal with the Union cavalry troop that winters at Bellevue. Racism, politics and a matchmaking stepmother test Maggie’s resourcefulness as she fights for Bellevue, a wounded Confederate officer and the affections of the Union commander.

In the north, Matty discovers an incriminating letter in General Worthington’s office, and soon she is on the run. With no one to turn to for help, she drugs the wealthy Colonel Cole Black and marries him, in hopes of getting the letter to his father, the governor of Michigan. But Cole is not happy about being married, and Matty’s life becomes all about survival.

Two unforgettable stories of courage, strength and honor.

Find on AMAZON.

——————————————————-

Alison's bio pic.Alison Bruce has had many careers and writing has always been one of them. Copywriter, editor and graphic designer since 1992, Alison has also been a comic book store manager, small press publisher, webmaster and arithmetically challenged bookkeeper. She is the author of mystery, suspense and historical romance novels.

Find Alison on the web:

Website: http://www.alisonbruce.ca

Blog: http://alisonebruce.blogspot.ca

Twitter: https://twitter.com/alisonebruce

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alisonbruce.books

Kat bio picKat Flannery’s love of history shows in the novels she writes. She is an avid reader of historical, suspense, paranormal, and romance. When not researching for her next book, Kat can be found running her three sons to hockey and lacrosse. She’s been published in numerous periodicals. This is Kat’s third book and she is hard at work on her next.

Find Kat on the web:

Website: www.katflannery-author.com

Blog: www.kat-scratch.blogspot.ca
Twitter: https://twitter.com/katflannery1

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Kat-Flannery/131065966999142

Character Interview: Rakan’dzor from Dina von Lowenkraft’s YA Fantasy Dragon Fire

We’re thrilled to have here today Rakan from Dina von Lowenkraft’s debut YA Fantasy, Dragon Fire.  Rakan is a teenage shapeshifting dragon living between Ngari, Tibet and Tromso, Norway.

It is a pleasure to have him with us today at Beyond the Books!

Dragon Fire coverThank you so for this interview, Rakan. Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers? 

I think it is a fair account, and although I would like to change some of my actions in the book, they are what happened. If I knew what I know now, I would have reacted differently.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality? If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

I think Dina understood my inner conflicts and portrayed them with fairness. I would have preferred to have had her clue me in to a few things earlier on, though. And I don’t think she needed to let Anna suffer as much as she did.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

My ability to control my emotions and to maintain the calm I need to fight.

Worse trait? 

My inability to control my emotions around Anna. I forget everything when we are together. Even when it puts us both in danger.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

I’m afraid I don’t watch a lot of human movies, but it would have to be a Tibetan. Perhaps a Khampa, they are taller than some of the others – as I am. Although, I really don’t see how a human can portray my dragon form – so you might have to let me play myself for that!

Do you have a love interest in the book?

My life revolves around Anna. I can no longer imagine it without her – even if the book starts before we met.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

From quite early on actually. There were too many factors that were beyond my control, from my sister’s reckless behavior, to my inability to concentrate around Anna. And then all of my questions about who – or what – June actually was… It was only when I understood and accepted what I would have to sacrifice to stop all the fighting, that I came into that inner place of calm that would allow me to change the course of history.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Kariaksuq. She was manipulated from the beginning and was forced to do many things that she felt was wrong. Even when I made mistakes, they were my choices, and I believed that what I was doing was right. Kariaksuq never had that freedom and her life was torture.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

Frustrated. Happy. Excited. Devastated. Hopeful. And a bit terrified about how things will play out in the future. I guess the feeling I have looking back on it now is determined.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if she decided to write another book with you in it? 

Give me time with Anna. Even just a few weeks. I need her. I love her. And if I must die, promise me first that Anna and the earth will be safe. I won’t let myself die until you do.

Thank you for this interview, Rakan. Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

I certainly hope so – because it will mean I will be with Anna. Or it had better mean that. Can I add something to my previous answer? Dina, be forewarned that if you write a second book and I can’t have time with Anna, I will make your life miserable.

Is that a threat, Rakan?

*Rakan flashes a devastatingly handsome smile* I’m a dragon. I take care of my own.

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ABOUT DRAGON FIRE

Some choices are hard to live with.

But some choices will kill you. 

When seventeen-year-old Anna first meets Rakan in her hometown north of the Arctic Circle, she is attracted to his pulsing energy. Unaware that he is a shapeshifting dragon, Anna is drawn into a murderous cycle of revenge that pits Rakan and his clan against her best friend June. 

Torn between his forbidden relationship with Anna, punishable by death, and restoring his family’s honor by killing June, Rakan must decide what is right. And what is worth living – or dying – for.

Genre: YA Fantasy

Author: Dina von Lowenkraft

Website: www.dinavonlowenkraft.com 

Publisher: Twilight Times Books

Purchase on AMAZON

Read a sample chapter 

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Dina von LowenkraftBorn in the US, Dina von Lowenkraft has lived on 4 continents, worked as a graphic artist for television and as a consultant in the fashion industry. Somewhere between New York and Paris she picked up an MBA and a black belt. Dina is currently the Regional Advisor for SCBWI Belgium, where she lives with her husband, two children and three horses.

Dina loves to create intricate worlds filled with conflict and passion. She builds her own myths while exploring issues of belonging, racism and the search for truth… after all, how can you find true love if you don’t know who you are and what you believe in? Dina’s key to developing characters is to figure out what they would be willing to die for. And then pushing them to that limit.

Site: www.dinavonlowenkraft.com

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dina-von-Lowenkraft/551209381555837

Twitter: https://twitter.com/vonlowenkraft

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/vonlowenkraft/

Book on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18282428-dragon-fire

Goodreads Author page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7123641.Dina_von_Lowenkraft

Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/Dina-von-Lowenkraft/e/B00ED2IZYY/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

 

Character Interview: Nova the VioletLight from Brandon Ellis’s Fantasy, The PureLights of Ohm Totem

We’re thrilled to have you here today, Nova. She’s one of Brandon Ellis’s main characters in his new Fantasy, “The PureLights of Ohm Totem.”  No one truly knows her age, but she’s a well established healer and high counsel of the Sihu Tribe on the Island of Ohm Totem and have been there for a long, long time.

It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so much for this interview, Nova. Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers? 

The only thing I’d like to set straight for the readers is to clear their minds and proceed from their hearts. It’s the only way to freedom—a way to your inner knowing. It’ll also keep you alive when the dangerous Dims Tribes of Ohm Totem come after.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

kdp4copyOne of the most difficult tasks in life is observing what’s really taking place in front of you without bringing in your inner judge. In this case, the author observed well, doing his best to emulate who I am from what he saw in his mind. Of course, he wasn’t perfect. He did get some things right, such as when I’m in hot pursuit of an opponent as I defend the PureLights, I tend to get a little too focused on the chase, just as the writer portrayed.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

I lead my tribe. I make sure they are safe in the throes of danger. If one of my tribemates gets hurt, I get hurt. If they suffer, I suffer. If Crepus Dim attacks, I’m the first in the fray. I remind the Dims that you don’t mess with a VioletLight (a PureLight Sage), because we can change your life in a matter of seconds.

Worse trait?

I see a soul in every single Being. I see potential there too. I think I can help everyone, even the Dims. I have more faith in spirit animals than I probably should. Though, we are not a lost cause!

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

I’m a spirit animal, that of the snow leopard race. So, any human playing me would have to be a voice-over, unless they can shape shift into a snow leopard, which I highly doubt. Well, unless they go through the portal to my land. In all truth, I’d choose a powerful woman. One that is wise and strong. I choose Meryl Streep.

Do you have a love interest in the book? 

Yes. My love is my tribe, along with my spirit animal friends from other tribes, including the Dims, even though they consider me enemy number one in their minds. Just like The Great Spirit, I accept saint and sinner, in the hopes that one day I can help them in their life’s journey. That’s my love interest. However, if there’s a Brad Pitt spirit animal lurking around, then I may fancy myself a date with him.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

When we lost a special friend, not from death, but from capture. She is the most powerful of allies, someone who could change the world that I live in to what it used to be—a loving, peaceful culture. If she only knew how powerful she really was.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Maldwyn. Because I would love to get into the mind of Crepus Dim, a komodo dragon and that’s Maldwyn’s job. Crepus has change my world into a dying one. He uses fear against us in order to rule it, in order to change weather patterns, in order to kill every last ally that I have. He’s my adversary, but Maldwyn is an ally. He’s close to Crepus, not by choice, but by necessity—to get information. In a way and in your Earthly view, Maldwyn would be considered an undercover agent.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away? 

It’s a page turner and very exciting.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

Brandon is already in the process of finishing his second book and I’m in it. Some words of advice? Great question. I’d tell him to stay in there and stick with it. You are raising a family, carrying a couple of jobs, and writing on the side. It’s going to pay off. You’ll see. What you give, you get back. Hard work, dedication, and love for what you do is the backbone of a healthy existence. Keep in mind, this book will one day be a best seller, where all the world will know of us—the PureLight race, the VioletLight Masters, and of the dreaded Dims. We are all spirit animals longing to live free in the minds of your people. And, to your people, I have one question: Which spirit animal are you? If you don’t know, then close your eyes, take several deep breaths, then ask, “What’s my spirit animal?” It will be the first animal that pops into your mind. When you see it, know it’s here to help you, to show you the correct path. With that, know that the spirit animal is a big part of who you are. In fact, it is you. Then, look up the traits of your spirit animal either through the world wide web or in a library book. Read, learn, and become fascinated.

Thank you for this interview, Nova. Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

Of course. I’m a fixture in Brandon’s PureLights Series. Count on seeing me in several more books coming soon to an Amazon store near you.

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brandonwaterfallprofileBrandon Ellis grew up on the outskirts of Portland, Oregon in a little town known as Gladstone, where he graduated high school and moved on to college and has two great loves in his life – writing and sports.

After being declared an All State Baseball and All League Basketball player, he obtained his Therapeutic Massage License and became one of the most successful Sports Massage Therapists and teachers in the City of Portland. He’s now creating imaginative worlds of inspiration and art through his books.

Website: www.thepurelights.com

FB: www.facebook.com/BrandonEllis1212

Twitter: @thepurelights

Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W8xbVDZAzts

Purchase the book on Amazon.

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