Blog Archives

A Character That Breaks My Heart

Catalina DuBois Author Interview

Catalina DuBois Author Interview

Revelations: The Colburn Curse is a genre-crossing novel with elements of history, romance, and fantasy. Did you start writing with this in mind, or did this happen organically as you were writing?

When I set out to write this story I didn’t have any particular genre in mind. I aim to keep my books short and fast moving because I am a lover of suspense and mystery. This was the technique I used to construct the Book of Matthew: House of Whispers. The only problem with a fast moving story was that it left my readers with a ton of personal questions about the characters. I received so many questions about the Colburn family that I wrote the Revelations prequel to satisfy the curiosity of readers.

Pete’s character went through some dramatic transformations throughout the novel. What was the writing process like for his character?

Pete, as you know, is Emperor Titus from Infinity: A Crown of Golden Leaves. As a lover of suspenseful stories, I have always found the villain to be the single most important element. The villain can make or break your book, so I put a great deal of time into this character. When I sat down to write the wicked Titus my goal was to create a villain who was hateable but relatable. He was a man cursed by the Goddess of Discord to lose his mind and torment the people he loves in every lifetime. Revelations: The Colburn Curse is another one of those tragic lifetimes. When I introduced this complicated character in Infinity: A Crown of Golden Leaves, I wasn’t sure how readers would react to him. To my total shock and amazement, Titus became a beloved fan favorite. For this reason, I brought him back for another lifetime as Pete in Revelations. He’s a character that breaks my heart and brings tears to my eyes, a symbol of the inner turmoil that many of us struggle to overcome.

The story takes places in pre-Civil War America. Why did you choose this time and place for your story?

I chose to write the pre-Civil War era rather than the Civil War itself because it’s easy to become distracted by the president, politics, and battles of the war while losing sight of the American citizens affected by it. I didn’t want to lose that vital human element. I desired a story that focused on the day to day lives of the people. Their thoughts, feelings, struggles, and triumphs are what make the characters relatable and memorable.

The writing in your story is very artful and creative. Was it a conscious effort to create a story in this fashion or is this style of writing reflective of your writing style in general?

One of the biggest things that influenced me to write was a story I heard many years ago. I was a child of seven when I sat on the ground, legs folded while being enthralled by an African storyteller. She was tapping a drum with her hands while verbally painting a picture. I don’t recall her name or even what she looked like. Half the time I can’t remember where I put my keys or what I had for breakfast, yet I remember every detail of the story she told thirty years ago. We live on through the people we touch and the stories we tell. If I am artful and creative it is because I followed her example.

Author Links: Barnes & Noble | Amazon | GoodReads | BookBub

REVELATIONS: The Colburn CurseMurder, betrayal, & scandal plague the Colburn family. A curse has shadowed them throughout time. This tale of intrigue follows the Colburns back to their beginning in New Orleans, Louisiana. Matt Colburn’s duty is to protect an aristocrat named Arial. From the moment they meet, she steals his breath away. They dance and it feels like a brush with destiny, but Arial has a dreadful secret that endangers the lives of everyone she holds dear, especially Matt. Will he be able to save her or will she become the next victim of the Louisiana Strangler…

Available at Barnes & Noble

My Inspiration for the Elaborate Mousetrap

B.C.R. Fegan Author Interview

B.C.R. Fegan Author Interview

The World’s Greatest Mousetrap follows Reginald as he tries his best to rid his shop of a pesky mouse. How did you come up with the idea behind this book?

It really began with the text on the first page. When I began writing the book, I had intended on having the bookstore as a small library. The only idea I had at the time was that I wanted to contrast the small, quiet and familiar world of a building (and the person within it) that had managed to keep out the expanding and fast paced world growing up about them.

After the first page, I knew I could take the story in a number of directions, but I decided that I really wanted to focus on that idea of our small worlds being challenged – not from the outside, but from within.

The elaborate mousetrap that Reginald builds was cute, and I ended up staring at the image for a few minutes just to take it all in. What served as your inspiration when creating the mousetrap?

I’m happy to hear that you lingered on that page – that was exactly what I hoped readers might do. I’ve always loved books that invite you to spend time looking over them in detail.

I think perhaps what served as my inspiration for the elaborate mousetrap, were the strange inventions and Rube Goldberg machines in the classic film ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’. I enjoyed the over-the-top attempts to solve a problem and I wanted to inject that humour into the book.

That page was actually one of the more difficult ones I think for me to describe to Fanny Liem (the book’s illustrator). I hope I didn’t frustrate her too much, but I think we went through three revisions. Each time, I asked her to make it bigger and more complex. In my mind, I had levers and tubes and gears crowding the shop so much that they were invading the street. In the end, I think she rightfully restrained the idea to something that someone of Reginald’s age could manage. She did a fantastic job I think with not only the mousetrap, but with all the illustrations.

I think, in the end, this book is about unlikely friendships. What was a guiding theme for you when writing this book?

I really wanted to create a fun and accessible story about prejudice and the worlds that we create around ourselves that can often hinder our capacity to see the similarities in others.

Reginald’s world is safe. He knows who he is and he knows what he likes. The mouse ends up invading that world and obviously setting into motion a series of events that leads to Reginald confronting his own prejudgements.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

The next book is called Don’t Drink the Pink and is about a young girl and the magical relationship she has with her Grandfather. Like all my other books, there are a number of layers that I hope will appeal to a wide age group. It will be available August 1, 2019.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Website

The World's Greatest Mousetrap by [Fegan, B.C.R.]When Reginald finds a mouse in his bookstore, he will stop at nothing to catch the pesky critter. Even if it means building the world’s greatest mousetrap. Unfortunately for Reginald, the mouse always seems to be one step ahead.

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What Is Their Endgame?

R.L. Dean Author Interview

R.L. Dean Author Interview

The Rhine is an exciting space opera following a dramatic chain of events set off by the Free Mars Now movement. What served as sources of inspiration for you while writing this book?

The Harmony series is based off of a 15 year old TV script that I wrote about Martian independence, the novel form is its third incarnation. That script was inspired by the TV show Babylon 5. I wanted to explore Mars more thoroughly; what is the impetus for the movement for independence, who are the leaders, what is their endgame?

We follow three very well developed characters in this story where their actions intertwine. What were some driving ideals behind their characters?

Mat is the ‘everyman’ or ‘average guy’ that suddenly finds himself in circumstances beyond his control, and in this capacity he is simply ‘reacting’ to what is happening. This was a deliberate design of character. Every one of us can relate to being ‘tossed’ into something that we must deal with- circumstances not of our own choosing. This also works as a forge for our own character, who we really are will come out. I think of all character archetypes, this is my favorite.

While it may be said that the UN (in my story) is the catalyst- their oppression of Mars setting everything in motion- the character of Alexandria is the one that sets the story off. She is my ‘grey’ character; a family woman, yet ambitious. In her case I wanted to explore those traits, how to balance ‘work’ and family. She loves her family, and seeing a world in the grip of government powers that live for greed, she decides to do something about it.

As the Governor of Mars, Shultz is completely dedicated to his people, but as the story progresses we see he’s in over his head. We hear so much about bad politicians, I thought I would shift the paradigm and make a good one.

You’ve built an intricate world in this book, between Earth and Mars and the corporations. What was the funnest part about building this world?

For me it’s the visualization. In a previous review of the book it was stated that I ‘lavish on detail’, and the reason for that is that I just write what I see. If Shultz and Jung are in his office talking, I imagine the office’s sights and sounds and smells. The same holds true for the Sadie’s corridors and cabins, or Apex’s boardroom.

This is book one in the Harmony series. Where will book two pick up and when will it be available?

Harmony Book 2: ‘Year of the Child’ picks up two months after the events in ‘The Rhine’, opening with Misaki. I expect it to be available by November 2019.

Author Links: Twitter | Facebook | Website

The colony depends on Earth businesses for goods, but Earth is run by an imperialistic United Nations whose regulations and sanctions are overbearing.

Increasing tensions are only exacerbated by suspicious pirate attacks in the Belt. It is rumored the attacks are the work of the Free Mars Now grassroots movement or privateers paid by the Martian government in defiance of the UN. Recent victims of a pirate attack, Mat and his crew aboard the Sadie, discover evidence that could prove the rumors true.

With the UN squeezing the colony for every dime they can get, and Shultz looking to better the Martian situation, there are deals to be made. No one knows that better than Apex Mining’s CEO, Alexandria Reinhardt, whose Board of Directors has ordered her to sell their ore to the Martians despite a UN embargo. Her plans are more ambitious than simply ignoring government decrees, though.

Will the Free Mars Now movement find a way to release the colony from their 100-year lease to Earth? Can Shultz find a way to work with Earth companies without angering their government? Does Mat possess enough evidence to prove Mars’ disloyalty? And … in the past what happens when you push a distant colony too far?

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Mafia and the Dark Net Combine

Leo James Author Interview

Leo James Author Interview

Layers of Deception is a thrilling crime novel that delves into cyber-security, the dark web and criminal gangs in the Far East. What served as your inspiration while writing this novel?

Basically I wanted to write the type of book (and movie) that I enjoy myself. As for where the actual story came from, I started writing about situations I experienced over the years and the plot emerged as I built it out. I found that when I’m in the zone and typing away the story just unfolded quite naturally.

I wanted a main character that readers would really empathise with, so while he’s a very successful businessman on one level, I think there’s also a real vulnerability to him, mentally at least. I think it’s this side of him that makes him stand out and draws the reader into his life and problems.

I began writing during my recovery from a serious fall into a storm drain whilst on business in Singapore. Stuck in hospital I found it cathartic to write. It helped with my recovery, both mentally and physically. That was the start. Once back to work, and traveling internationally, I would write everywhere: on planes, trains, staying at hotels, at any given opportunity.

What is your professional experience and how has that helped you write this novel?

I worked for over 25 years in the technology sector – mainly internet security and international fraud detection. I wanted to bring my experiences of business deals and Internet security in the heart of banking systems, where you’d never expect everything to go very wrong very quickly, combining this as a thriller where modern-day mafia and the dark net combine to corrupt the heart of the international banking system.

I think it would really appeal to people who understand the techie stuff, but my aim was to make it perfectly accessible for non technical people too.

Whilst my time in the IT industry, international travel and experiences, equipped me with many stories over the years, my subsequent work as a therapist has enabled me to study all aspects of human behavior. I specialize in treating people with issues around anxiety, phobias and trauma. We are all fallible human beings. One of the main things that therapy gives me is empathy – helping me to understand and get into the mind of the characters in my writing

Kuala Lumpur is a detailed and fascinating backdrop to your story. Why did you choose this location for the setting to you novel?

The thriller draws on my many years experience of doing business in Kuala Lumpur as an IT business entrepreneur in the computer security sector trying to land contracts in Kuala Lumpur.

Despite its challenges, Kuala Lumpur is easily my favorite city in Asia. The city is always on the move, spurred by high technology, a strong knowledge-base and capital-intensive industries. The difference between rich and poor is very stark and there are issues with crime. Traffic is a nightmare as well. All of that aside, the food is fantastic and there are very few cities that are so inherently culturally diverse.

What is the next book that you are writing and when will it be available?​

I’m working on my second novel, a thriller set in Kuala Lumpur. It’s about a Malaysian family who illegally buy a Vietnamese child – a boy – the result of a turbulent relationship between a UK businessman and a Vietnamese woman living in Kuala Lumpur. The boy thrived in his new loving family unit, but his life and all those around him were about to be devastated when his real mother, who had since married a rich American businessman – wants him back.

In addition I have completed two more plots. A sequel to Layers of Deception where a child is kidnapped by Malaysian triads as a means to extort funds from a UK business based in Kuala Lumpur. The other novel is a thriller based on my fall in Singapore.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

Layers of Deception: An utterly gripping, international crime thriller. by [James, Leo]With international backers, big business deals and Internet security in the heart of banking systems, you’d never expect everything to go very wrong very quickly. And when things go wrong, they go very wrong! Layers of Deception is an international crime thriller where modern-day mafia and dark net combine to corrupt the heart of the international banking system.

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God Knows Our Hearts

Dr. Ronel Benade Author Interview

Dr. Ronel Benade Author Interview

Heavenly Whispers is a daily devotional perfectly written for people on the go. Why was this an important book for you to write?

So many people are working unprecedented hours night and day to provide for their family and make their mark in the workplace, leaving them with some guilt for not taking time to give to God. My purpose with this book was to remove that “guilt” we easily place on ourselves. God knows our hearts, and responsibility. With this book I give you, one thought and scripture to focus on, something to ponder during your hectic schedule. I tried to be as balanced as possible, covering different aspects you might encounter or gain new insight.

Time with God has nothing to do with time on a clock, to me it is sacred time during those busy hours where your inner man reflects and speak to God.

This book contains so many beautiful and inspirational selections of scripture. How did you choose what went into this book?

Honestly without the guidance of the Holy Spirit I don’t think I would have been able to write this book. Some life experiences and lessons I have learned He would bring to remembrance, and when praying about it, I would ask for words that would be helpful to the reader.

My favorite is John 17:17 on day 125. Do you have a favorite from this collection?

Day 189, Ephesians 3:16 is just one of my favorites. This one however is based on a personal encounter I went through when I was only a 3-day, born again baby. Back then I did not yet have a Bible, and, when faced with a demonic force I had to take a stand and say “no” 3 times, before that entity would leave me be. This is where I learned about the power our words have. With Christ taking the center within your inner man, you are an unstoppable force.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I just released a booklet in my Mother tongue; Afrikaans, as I believe my own “people” are deprived of new revelation God has for them, and we are in uncertain times in our country. My heart’s desire is that it would release new hope and inspiration. I would like to however release my next book in 2020 but I am working through some ideas.

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook

Heavenly Whispers: 222 Day Devotional by [Benade, Dr. Ronel]

This little book is packed with inspiration and encouragement.

Heavenly Whispers is a pocket-size devotional focusing on one scripture per day with a simple prayer that will inspire the reader to take small steps to impact others in an inspirational way. This devotional will suit the on-the-go persons to have a few minutes to spare to recharge and receive their daily upliftment from God that will carry them through the day.

This book is a quick daily read but packed with insights and new revelations. Be ready to be transformed to a better version of yourself.

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Bizarre Coincidences

Jardine Henry Hart Author Interview

Jardine Henry Hart Author Interview

Rogue Genes follows Tommy who is dealing with the trauma of the military while seeking revenge for the death of his mother. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling novel?

I woke one morning from a disturbing dream, and told my wife I was going to write a novel. The fact that the dream had no bearing on the eventual story line didn’t matter, at least it got the ball rolling. For the next two years I literally lived two lives, completely involved with every emotion of the characters I had created. A real labor of love.

I always knew that one day I would write a book or two, and for that reason I was never an avid reader. I simply didn’t want to have someone else’s story buried in my subconscious, to one day be revealed unintentionally, as my own. Originality was the key. To be honest, I wasn’t aware of the enormity of the task (100000 words with two fingers) until I had committed myself, but by then it was tool late. I was hooked. The truth is I had absolutely no idea where the story was going from one day to the next, and this continued pretty well for 2 years. I think it would be accurate to say the book wrote me. I put a lot of thought into the characters, hoping to bring them to life,and from the feedback I have received I seem to have achieved that. Hopefully, one day the book might be a movie.

I guess the story does seem a little unbelievable at times, and I tried to counter that by making it obvious in the characters conversations that “you are never going to believe this, are you kidding me” or “unbelievable, you are going to have to write a book about this.” The funny thing is, you would probably never believe the number of those bizarre coincidences, or similar events, that I have actually encountered personally or indirectly in my life!

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

Well I would love to do a sequel, but self publishing is no easy task, I guess the sales will dictate that.

From the moment nurse Marge McConichee laid eyes on the one-day old baby boy, abandoned at the hospital where she worked, she knew he was meant to be hers. Marge and her husband Joe had been hoping to adopt a child, and, after pulling a few strings, the baby was put in their care. They named him Tommy in honour of Joe’s father. Following Joe’s untimely death, Marge was forced to raise the rebellious Tommy on her own. A couple of stints in a boy’s detention centre are followed by a term in the army, where after graduating to the Special Service, Tommy finally returns home a somewhat damaged and reluctant hero. Eventually meeting the girl of his dreams, Tommy’s life is then shattered by the death of his beloved Marge; an event that sets him on a path to find his biological mother. His journey is littered with bizarre coincidences, and acts of evil, which leave Tommy determined to avenge the sins of the past. Some families have a member with a Rogue Gene, but in this family, it was part of their DNA.

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Emotionally Salient

Patrick Barnes Author Interview

Patrick Barnes Author Interview

The Audric Experiment follows Pierre through an ideal society that quickly has it’s facade smashed leaving Pierre to come to terms with the change. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling novel?

I remember wondering when I was younger about serotonin raising drugs and whether or not it would be possible to somehow inject serotonin into a person’s brain. It was an interesting question to me not just for it’s corrective effects on depression but for the moral and theological questions it raised. This led me to start thinking about dreams and God and if it ever became possible to regulate mood in such a way whether or not the world would go along with it. The purpose of The Audric Experiment was not to answer these questions but rather to bring some hope and intrigue along with them. I needed a story to house this content and that was the inspiration.

Pierre is an interesting character that changes is some big ways throughout the book. What were some driving ideals behind his character?

I wanted Pierre to be a high achiever two reasons. One, was so that I could imbue him with emotion and decency and create someone who is extremely likeable and compelling. Two, it gave him further to fall when the you-know-what hits the fan. What Pierre finds important in life gave me room to experiment with some themes that were personal to me, and I knew that changing those values would be emotionally salient for the reader.

I really enjoyed the world building and backdrop to this story. How did you set about creating the world for your characters to inhabit?

A lot of aspects of the world the characters inhabit surprised me. Because a lot of the details I came up with while I was writing. I thought about what an ideal future would look like, things I that would raise the quality of life, and more importantly, things that connected with criticisms I had always had about the world in general. For instance, Pierre goes to school mainly to learn about his future profession — a change I had always wanted to see instituted when I was in school.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I’m writing a young adult murder mystery. It will be available in a year.

Author Links: Twitter | FacebookWebsite

The Audric Experiment by [Barnes, Patrick]Can we create a world with no depression?

In 2328 England, they did just that. They call their society Audric – a place where there is no depression because of cybernetics, and where bad decisions are met with a bracelet-shock and a mind-altering dream.

Pierre Morena, the only seventeen year old who has never been shocked by his bracelet, wakes up in an infirmary with no memory of why. It seems a Christian group, permitted by the Audric government, took an interest in him, and the Audric Earnings Authority may want him dead. What follows is his quest to survive, befriending a beautiful mysterious girl who possesses some of the answers he needs, and uncovering secrets that are as close to him as his own family. But before Pierre leaves the infirmary, he may have to cut a secret deal with Audric because Pierre is about to have his first bracelet-shock.

Filled with twists, philosophy, and a story that is as engaging as it is thought provoking, The Audric Experiment will have you reading deep into the night to find out what will happen to the only seventeen year old who everyone thinks has never been shocked by his bracelet.

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Universal Truths

Debjeet Mukherjee Author Interview

Debjeet Mukherjee Author Interview

Voyages is a collection of poetry that inspires reflection while also helping readers grasp a deeper meaning of poetry. Why was this an important book for you to write?

Voyages was my way of showing to the world how I perceive the everyday things that go unnoticed. My philosophy coupled with my thoughts in order to point out some universal truths about human nature. The collection is almost like a guide which will take anyone through their teenage years and relive their memories.

What is a theme you find yourself drawn to when writing?

I believe in the abundant goodness that lies in every person. Luck always guides you to be someone greater than yourself. The infinite energy of the cosmos brings balance and harmony to our thoughts, if we allow them to. Every day promises new opportunities which help us move higher and these are the themes I deal with. My writings have inspiration and love.

One of my favorite poems from the collection is ‘Prayers Alive in Hope’. What is your favorite poem from the collection?

Wow! Thanks. “Prayers Alive in Hope” is indeed one of my best poems. My favorite poem would be “Heavens Face”. It was written when I was 15 years old after reading Paulo Coelho’s “The Alchemist”.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

The next book will be VOYAGES Volume II – A Collection of Short Stories available end 2019/early 2020. I occasionally release small short story booklets and one such has already been published titled “A Rural Coincidence” which is available on Amazon. The next short story booklet will be released on Mother’s Day titled “The Farewell”.

Author Links: GoodReadsTwitterFacebookWebsite

VOYAGES Volume I :  A Collection of Poetry by [Debjeet Mukherjee]

Voyages Volume I is a collection of poems written to break the notion that poetry is an art comprehensible only by the elite. Understanding good poetry becomes easy when there is a guide to help understand all those complicated words and lines. Keeping in mind the feelings of the reader, a small quotation has been provided at the end of each poem, carrying a message of what the preceding lines were all about. This style of writing has been chosen as most of the time we fail to understand that poetry is very much a part of our life.

Whether it be sharing good wishes everyday on social media or going through some lovely quotations to uplift our moods, life is just one big book of poetry that we refuse to understand in popular culture. Just like a ship embarks on a voyage, searching and exploring new continents through vast reaches of the ocean; our life too embarks on a journey of adventures which are best described in poetry. I believe this collection would be able to help readers appreciate poetry as a whole and live up to every possible expectation.

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What Choices We Make

Samrat Mitra Author Interview

Samrat Mitra Author Interview

The Incidental Jihadi follows Len as he begins to realize there is a complicated game being played between the communist and the west. What was the inspiration for the idea behind this thrilling novel?

Back in 2012 the coverage on the Syrian crisis was quite rampant on the news with the images of high profile Caucasian victims in orange being executed by the vanguard in black. Around that time after a few freak clicks on the web I came across the recorded brutalities against Syrian civilians on what was surely an underground website. There lay cataloged in various categories the shootings, be-headings and post bomb blast videos taken in Aleppo, Idlib and a few remote unnamed Syrian villages.After confirming the authenticity of the videos and their location a few times(which was probably the most shocking and challenging research I had ever done) those unknown victims begged to be heard. I realised that no one was truly reporting the situation on the ground and ‘the news’ is not just about facts like the body count! The news broadcasters were just screening out the details to reduce this ongoing tragedy to a mere topic for the fortnight. No one wants to see a beheading while shoveling food in their mouths and I get that. But we must make room in people’s minds on the actual impact of any war for that matter and that needs to be done with realism which is on the ground and preferably not censored. This formed an idea to read beyond the news and perceive it’s reality and the inspiration stayed throughout till I completed the novel.

Len is an interesting character that is motivated by his family and their safety. What were some themes you wanted to explore with his character?

Len could be anyone of us who is physically able and a well educated immigrant living in a country where his efforts pay him excellent results. However none of us are actually ever prepared for what the future holds for us and what choices we make if we are faced with distressing situations beyond our control mould us as a human being. Far from being perfect and having a slightly sycophantic bend
he will do what his superior asks him to do even if it seemed ethically wrong and this trait is quite human especially in ambitious individuals. Len is reckless in his ambition and he makes the mistake
of involving his wife Sara in a project that had a warning light beeping on it from the word ‘go’. He descends into rage anger and depression as they are marooned in the remote city of Qatmah, this is
again a denial in his own mind of the rash choices he had made to appease his superior and endangered the one person he loved. Wave after wave of shocking transformation in Len(his acceptance of a life in Qatmah, the change in his identity, his family’s abduction) and how he chose to accept it as a man shows how his character metamorphosed from someone in denial to someone who takes responsibility and acts appropriately and this is where Naim seems to be his alter ego but they are really the same person. I was hoping to show that come whatever a situation in life, the man who survives the longest is the one who does not live in denial of the responsibility of his actions. I wanted to explore his ability to keep doing the right thing even in the face of inevitable catastrophe.

The story is vivid and detailed in it’s account of people and places. What research did you undertake for this novel?

Besides the research into the distressing underground video material on the executions, I started reading up on the Middle Eastern conflict to understand it’s origins starting right after the end of the Second World war particularly around the time when the United States started exerting it’s political clout over Britain and France back in the fifties. That was just for historical perspective though as my perception changed after I met a few of the Syrians who had come to London to take refuge( we would never call them refugees, it just seemed a derogatory term to use). Their stories told in straight english sentences was as heartbreaking as it could be and the videos, the history and their accounts all tied together with the information I gathered from Arabic and African news journals. This was a point of view that people seldom saw and that is what I brought into the novel. In terms of geographical locations, names and places mentioned throughout the novel, they are all actual places and the actual novel gets more gripping when you lookup the places on, say, google maps and find that every bit of the descriptions including terrain, the people and even the castle. They are wonderful examples of actual places that are existing on the edge of the war and peace that keeps waxing and waning over the region.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I don’t believe I have completed Len’s development yet and there was a huge though entirely unintentional open end in this book: that of the fate of his wife. Len and Sara have a way of staying in my head, so there will be a final conclusion on their fate in my next book. I learnt a few lessons from my first novel, The Incidental Jihadi and this time I want to do justice to Sara and Len and the people they
have known and cared about. For this reason this is going to take at least a year in development and a year in editing. I just want it to be perfect.

Author Links: GoodReadsFacebookWebsite

The Incidental Jihadi: An alternative point of view by [Mitra, Samrat]Twenty-nine year old geologist/surveyor, Len Berkowicz has everything to live for: a wonderful companion and a successful career working for a major oil exploration company when his career mentor and friend, Eric decides to send him to a risk prone oil exploration project in the Golan Heights.

In his journey he assimilates the true nature of the ‘holy war’ through the eyes of his comrades, realising that a far more complicated and subtle ‘game’ played between the communist and capitalist powers on the ground.

Will Len succeed in his mission that seemed doomed right from its inception?

Can those of us living in the West be able to keep the dust at bay on our home turf when we decimate every Arabian state to rubble?

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No Easy Resolutions

Linnea Tanner Author Interview

Linnea Tanner Author Interview

Dagger’s Destiny follows princess Catrin who is torn between duty to her kingdom and her forbidden love. What were some things you felt you had to bring over from Apollo’s Raven and what were some new themes you wanted to explore?

One of the themes I carry over from Apollo’s Raven is Catrin is torn between her duty to her kingdom and her forbidden love for the Roman enemy, Marcellus. However, in Dagger’s Destiny, Catrin must face the consequences of her forbidden love when her father, King Amren, accuses her of treason due to her liaison with Marcellus. Duty is of greatest importance to the characters because it exemplifies the honor central to being in a position of power. Duty to the state and the family’s legacy is explored as well as duty to loved ones and to one’s self. The characterizations of Catrin, Marcellus, and their fathers are more fully explored as each person must grapple with balancing their duty to the state vs. their love to those they cherish. There are no easy resolutions as the fathers have resorted to brutality and corruption to maintain their powers.

Another theme that is explored in Dagger’s Destiny is fate vs. free will. Catrin must dive into the Depth of Possibilities of what choices she can make to stop the curse that foretells her half-brother will kill their father. However, whenever Catrin changes the future, the curse an alter in unexpected ways.

Dagger’s Destiny is a genre-crossing novel with elements of a romance, fantasy and history as well. Did you start writing with this in mind, or did this happen organically as you were writing?

When I first start writing the series, the story was intended to be a historical fiction based on the legacy of Mark Antony and Cleopatra, but with a Celtic twist. However, as I explored Celtic and Roman mythology, I began weaving in some of the fantastical elements to help explain what the Celts believed. I was particularly fascinated to learn that the Celts has a similar belief in the immortality of the soul as the Greek philosopher, Pythagoras. They believed the soul could transmigrate between different animal species and could occupy another body after death. As a result, the series evolved into a more mythical tale as I weaved in other fantastical worlds and druidic powers into the historical backdrop.

The supporting characters in this novel, I felt, were intriguing and well developed. Who was your favorite character to write for?

A secondary character that I enjoyed developing was Ferrex—a loyal, duty-bound Celtic warrior who deeply loves Catrin and risks his reputation to support her. Down-to-earth and blunt, Ferrex is a sharp contrast to Marcellus, a suave and impetuous Roman nobleman who has had a reckless affair with an older married woman. Ferrex will continue to play an important role in the series.

This is book 2 in your Curse of Clansmen and Kings series. Where will book 3 take readers and when will it be available?

Book 3: Amulet’s Rapture will take the star-crossed lovers, Catrin and Marcellus, to Gaul (modern-day France) and Rome. Even thought they believe they are destined to be with each other, they encounter resistance to their love at every turn. They will sacrifice almost everything to be together, but can Catrin must balance her fate to retake her kingdom as a warrior queen with her role as the lover of a man who considers her subservient?

Amulet’s Rapture is drafted and undergoing revisions based on feedback from critique partners and an editor.  It is my goal that it will be published in approximately one year.

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Dagger's Destiny (Curse of Clansmen and Kings Book 2) by [Tanner, Linnea]

A Celtic warrior princess accused of treason for aiding her enemy lover must win back her father’s love and trust

In the rich and vibrant tale, Author Linnea Tanner continues the story of Catrin and Marcellus that began with the awarding-winning novel APOLLO’S RAVEN in the Curse of Clansmen and Kings Series. Book 2: DAGGER’S DESTINY sweeps you into an epic tale of forbidden love, mythological adventure, and political intrigue in Ancient Rome and Britannia.

War looms over 24 AD Britannia where rival tribal rulers fight each other for power and the Romans threaten to invade to settle their political differences. King Amren accuses his daughter, Catrin, of treason for aiding the Roman enemy and her lover, Marcellus. The ultimate punishment is death unless she can redeem herself. She must prove loyalty to her father by forsaking Marcellus and defending their kingdom—even to the death. Forged into a warrior, she must overcome tribulations and make the right decisions on her quest to break the curse that foretells her banished half-brother and the Roman Empire will destroy their kingdom.

Yet, when Catrin again reunites with Marcellus, she is torn between her love for him and duty to King Amren. She must ultimately face her greatest challenger who could destroy her life, freedom, and humanity.

Will Catrin finally break the ancient prophecy that looms over her kingdom? Will she abandon her forbidden love for Marcellus to win back her father’s trust and love? Can King Amren balance his brutality to maintain power with the love he feels for Catrin?

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