Posted by Literary Titan
The Penitent: Part II follows Evangel who is struggling to cope with her abilities while evading those who seek to hurt her. What was the inspiration for the setup to this exciting novel?
I wanted to see if I could stir the writing cauldron some more and contribute a 21st century flavor to sci-fi/ fantasy storytelling with an added sprinkling of faith–based Christian themes, especially in terms of the heroes being on a spiritual adventure as well.
Could I gather together the sensibilities of these inspirational sources and could I create a brand new and seminal story for our time?
The inspiration for the second book of the Penitent comes from a variety of sources. One of them is my love of fantasy and science fiction, which partly influences the creation of The Immortality Wars series. The first and third books, deal directly with the young warrior Pall Warren and his quest for understanding what is happening to him and to those around him. I wanted to have him fall in love with someone who could match him, not only in terms of strength of character, but also provide him with a source of support for faith and belief in God. Evangel surrounds him with prayer for protection against those who try to destroy Pall and his world.
A second influence is my love for the stories and poems about the medieval ages regarding Great Britain and France. I wanted to see if I could write a 21st century story that has an epic sweep to it similar to the works of older writers like Sir Thomas Malory, Chrétien de Troyes, and modern writers represented by T. H. White, Stephen Lawhead, Parke Godwin and Marion-Zimmer Bradley.
I also love the storytelling of science fiction authors like Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, Orson Scott Card as well as those of fantasy authors, such as J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Ursula K. Le Guinn, which is the third wellspring of inspiration for Part II of the Penitent.
My fourth source of inspiration is from storytelling about the Bible that were created by writers and by the cinema. Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ, written by General Lew Wallace (1880), and the 1959 movie; Lloyd C. Douglas’ (1942) The Robe, and the 1953 movie; and the work of the Scottish author George MacDonald, are examples of inspiration that fueled my hopes of writing something similar, yet unique for our contemporary age.
With these above influences, I wanted to see what could be created if I put together the voices of Tolkien, Lewis, MacDonald, Stephen King, Dean Kuntz and Lee Child.
Evangel is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character development?
I wanted to have a strong and compelling young woman as a major protagonist in the first trilogy. I thought she should share some of the attributes and personal history that Joan of Arc experienced in her life. I also wanted a complex individual with other characteristics and traits. As a boy, I was very much influenced by reading the poem “Evangeline”, which was written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in 1847. This influence helped deepen Evangel’s personality as well as her spiritual understanding and perspective. She wants to live a quiet life with her adopted grandfather, Matthew, but swirling forces are around her and The Refuge where they live battling for supremacy of power. Like Heidi in Johanna Spyri’s (1881) novel with the same name, Evangel is an orphan and grows up in the wilderness. I hoped to create a woman whose innocence is deepened by the power of God. The core of this innocence will be tested by hell itself. Yet, she has the ability to keep her mental and moral balance. I wanted her to be wise as well, but in this part of her story, she’s growing into such wisdom. She becomes a major ally of one of the other main characters, Pall Warren, in the Penitent. Indeed, they fall in love from afar with one another.
I enjoyed the world you’ve created in your series. What were some themes you wanted to focus on while crafting your world?
It is difficult for me to answer your question as I don’t want to spoil the plot and overall background context of the series. I am hoping to write a trilogy of trilogies, or an ennealogy. It is partly based on the concept of a Russian doll, one in which there is a doll within a doll, within a doll. The three trilogies represent three different sets of realities stacked over one another. The first trilogy is the smallest one. The second, the Pilgrim, and the third trilogy, the Prophet, set up a thought experiment about what the nature of life will be like in the 26th century. The present time of the story is 2562, but despite hints through the Penitent, the characters and readers of the story are witnessing a tale seemingly out of the Middle Ages. However, all is not what it seems.
What will the role of science and technology play in our lives five hundred years from now? Will there still be believers in God? What tension will exist between faith, science and technology? Besides being a sci-fi, fantasy saga this series is also a spiritual adventure offering a glimpse of the future where heroes, demons, blessed and cursed battle over an elusively sought potion for everlasting life. For the majority of those alive in 2562, science offers a Jacob’s ladder to immortality. Faint echoes from religion barely register in the awareness of those living in this era.
“The end of suffering. The demise of death. Life unchained. Time conquered. The elixir of life found. The jewel of forever in the palm of life’s grasp…”
This is book two in your Immortality Wars series. What can readers expect in book three?
Book three is a return to Pall’s quest to meet again with John Savage after being separated from him in a dreadful battle that occurs at the beginning of book one against marauders and a demon named Ünger, who simply tears apart any human being it can find. Pall continues his quest not only to reconnect with John Savage but also to summon the strength and courage to continue his search for meaning. The role he must play by determining who he is forms an integral part in the destiny of everyone around him.
Pall’s journey is reached at the port city of Seascale where he soon discovers that the realm of West Fundlund is also imperiled and under attack by the renegade priest Kosem Mungadai, a thaumaturge of the 13th level in the occult arts.
Will Evangel’s prayer of protection still surround and preserve Pall from wickedness? Are courage, strength of arms and the blessings of love capable of enduring and overcoming the corrupting power of malign forces seeking the utter ruin of his world?
About Literary TitanThe Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.
Posted on August 29, 2020, in Interviews and tagged A. Keith Carreiro, action, adventure, author, author interview, book, book review, bookblogger, christian, ebook, epic fantasy, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, mystery, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, story, The Penitent: Part II, writer, writing. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.
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