Monday, December 19, 2016

Blog Tour + #Giveaway: Heir of Thunder by Karissa Laurel @KarissaLaurel @yaboundtourspr

Heir of Thunder
Karissa Laurel
Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: September 26th 2016
Evolved Publishing

Summary from Goodreads:

The Lord of Thunder’s sudden death leaves his daughter, Evelyn Stormbourne, unprepared to rule Inselgrau in his place. Weeks before Evie’s ascension to the throne, revolutionaries attack and destroy her home. She conceals her identity and escapes under the protection of her father’s young horse master, Gideon Faust. Together they flee Inselgrau and set sail for the Continent, but they’re separated when a brutal storm washes Evie overboard.

In her efforts to reunite with her protector and reach allies on the Continent, Evie befriends a band of nomads who roam the world in airships fueled by lightning. She also confronts a cabal of dark Magicians plotting to use her powers to create a new divine being, and she clashes with an ancient family who insists her birthright belongs to them.

If she’s to prevail and defeat her enemies, Evie must claim her heritage, embrace her dominion over the sky, and define what it means to be Heir of Thunder.

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Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble  

An Interview with Karissa Laurel

          What inspired you to write Heir of Thunder?

When the song “Viva la Vida” by Colplay came out years ago, I immediately fell in love with the song and it gave me instant ideas about a character who once had a kingdom, but lost it. Right away I asked myself: Who is this character and what could have happened to make him or her loose his or her kingdom? And what is she doing about it, now? Those questions eventually evolved into Heir of Thunder.

          When or at what age did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I have always read voraciously, and I enjoyed writing stories and essays all through my school years. Occasionally I wrote a single scene or a bit of dialogue, but I never developed those bits into an entire book. I never considered taking it seriously until around 2007 when a YA book series was becoming super popular. I remember reading those books and thinking: Hey, I could do this. So I tried writing a book just to see if I could complete something from beginning to end. When I had finished that goal, I tried writing another. Those books never went anywhere except into my hope chest, but it proved I could do the hardest part: starting and finishing a novel.

          What is the earliest age you remember reading your first book?

I remember my mom reading to me at bedtime until I was old enough to read on my own. There’s a recording of me as a little kid “reading” to her, but I had mostly just memorized the book (It was “Donald Duck and the Witch Next Door”) and I was reciting it from memory. That’s how reading begins, though, if you think about it. I can’t say at what age I started reading on my own, but it was probably around four or five.

          What genre of books do you enjoy reading?

I’m open to reading anything, generally. However, it should be no surprise that my favorite books tend to be ones with a fantastical element. Urban Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Science Fiction, Magical Realism, etc. Like most people, I read to escape, and I like to escape into worlds where things can happen that can’t happen in real life. I get enough real life every day.

          What is your favorite book?

Picking one favorite book is like asking a mother to pick her favorite child, but to name a few... A Winter’s Tale by Mark Helprin; Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling; The Golden Compass series by Phillip Pullman; American Gods by Neil Gaiman; The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood; The Princess Bride by William Goldman; The Lonesome Gods by Louis L’Amore.

          You know I think we all have a favorite author. Who is your favorite author and why?

Again, picking one is nearly impossible, but I’ll let it be a tie between Neil Gaiman and Margaret Atwood. They are my personal golden standard: The masters of craft to whom I always hold myself accountable, in my own mind. When I read their books, I feel like they’ve managed to transcend something as mundane as writing and they are making a kind of real world magic of their own.

          If you could travel back in time here on earth to any place or time. Where would you go and why?

I really enjoy reading (and writing) historical novels, but I honestly have no wish to go to the past. Women and minorities were often mistreated. Medical care was poor. People were generally uneducated, and if you weren’t born into money, life was hard. I really, really like hot water at the turn of the knob, air conditioning, microwaves, and good pills for headaches and cramps. I’m spoiled! If I time travelled, I’d prefer to go to the future in hopes that things are better—that human rights have improved; health care and quality of life has improved; and I want that flying car the books and movies have been promising me all these years. Which begs the question... why don’t I write more sci-fi?

          When writing a book do you find that writing comes easy for you or is it a difficult task?

It totally depends! (I bet you guessed that was what I would say). Sometimes the words flow and the plot comes and everything just works. Sometimes I can’t get a word on the paper to save my life. Some days it’s that I’m just not in the mood, and sometimes it’s because I don’t know what’s supposed to happen next. But the secret to finishing a project is to never admit defeat and accept that it’s okay to stop and think about the book without actually putting down words. Thinking about what words to write next counts as writing, too.

          Do you have any little fuzzy friends? Like a dog or a cat? Or any pets?

If you don’t count my kid, who can get a little fuzzy when he doesn’t take enough showers, then I have only one. Her name is Bonnie and she is a husky mix. I’m not sure what she’s mixed with—we think it might be a German shepherd—but she fabulous blue eyes and she howls when she gets excited like huskies do. She also sheds enough fur on a weekly basis to make multiple clones of herself.

          What is your ""to die for"", favorite food/foods to eat?

In a previous career, I was a cook and a caterer, so I can make most anything I put my mind to. My favorite things to eat when I go out are things I wouldn’t dare make or know I couldn’t make well, and that tends to be dishes from foreign countries. I adore Indian and Thai food, but I leave it up to the professionals to cook those meals.  Another thing that I tend to leave to the professionals is pizza. I could eat pizza every day, probably. In my house, we are very snooty about our pizza and usually don’t order it from a chain restaurant. Instead we get it from a little mom and pop place near my house called La Roma’s. It’s the best in town, in our opinions.

          Do you have any advice for anyone that would like to be an author?

Being an author is not a one-size-fits all career, and there is no single right way to do it. Every author’s path will have some similar and recognizable stepping stones, but each path will take its own unique direction. Write a lot. Read a lot (a whole, whole lot!). Don’t think it’s going to happen overnight. Accept criticism and rejection (if you go down a path that does not include criticism and rejection, then you probably aren’t doing it right). Keep trying to get better. Never give up.

About the Author
Karissa lives in North Carolina with her kid, her husband, the occasional in-law, and a very hairy husky. Some of her favorite things are coffee, chocolate, and super heroes. She can quote Princess Bride verbatim. She loves to read and has a sweet tooth for fantasy, sci-fi, and anything in between. Sometimes her husband convinces her to put down the books and take the motorcycles out for a spin. When it snows, you'll find her on the slopes.

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Karissa Laurel said...

Thanks for hosting Heir of Thunder on your blog!

SnoopyDoo said...

Great Interview :) Great book :)