On a magical note: The Lost Prince

Did you know that Christmas is only a couple of days away? You did? Well it must not have snuck up on you quite as badly as it’s snuck up on me! As ill-prepared as I feel, I am quietly pleased that it’s nearly here, as the merry day will mean that I have a few days to put my feet up, sleep in, and do some extra reading. I might even avoid turning the computer on for a couple of days!!

But, before that, I’ve got one more fantastic author interview to share with you. What better way to finish off a year of amazing reading?!

Screen shot 2012-12-20 at 11.48.45 PMLast month I had a read of Julie Kagawa’s latest instalment in her Iron Fey series, The Lost Prince (Harlequin). I enjoyed Julie’s The Immortal Rules earlier in the year but this is the first of the Iron Fey books that I’ve read. It was magical, action packed and filled with goblins and fey of all shapes and sizes…

Don’t look at them. Never let them know you can see them. That is Ethan Chase’s unbreakable rule. Until the fey he avoids at all costs – including his reputation – begin to disappear, and Ethan is attacked. Now he must change the rules to protect his family and to save a girl he never thought he’d dare to fall for.

Ethan is used to dealing with faeries, but this is a whole different situation – a puzzle he has to solve with brain and brawn, even if it means making contact with his absent fey-royal sister…

“Shivering, I gazed stonily at the thing hovering a few feet away. It was unlike any faery I’d seen before. Not a nymph, a sidhe, a boggart, a dryad, anything that I recognised. Not to say I was an expert on the different types of faeries, but I’d seen more than most people, and this one was just…weird.”

“It was shorter than me by a nearly a foot, and so thin it didn’t seem possible that its legs could hold it up. In fact, its legs ended in needle-sharp tips, so it looked like it was walking on toothpicks instead of feet. Its face was hatchet thin, and its fingers were those same thin points, like it could poke its nail right through your skull. The skeletons of what used to be wings protruded from its bony shoulders, broken and shattered, and it hovered a few inches off the ground, as if the earth itself didn’t want to touch it.”

Julie has created a stunning world of likeable characters, surreal scenery and classical magic that will draw you into the story. You’ll be sure to enjoy the beautiful mystery of Nevernever and the gentle romance of the Ethan and Kenzie’s story.

Last week I asked Julie a few questions about her latest novel…

The last book of your’s which I read was The Immortal Rules and I was wondering, is it difficult to move out of one series, one scenario to another? How do you shift from vampires to faeries?
It helps that the books are so different.  In the Iron Fey series, the setting itself was surreal, magical, beautiful, and a little bit creepy.  In The Immortal Rules, the setting is much darker.  In Immortal, Allison had to be tough, gritty, and hardened to survive her world, unlike Meghan Chase in the Iron Fey series, whose upbringing was fairly normal.

In this latest Iron Fey installment, Ethan takes on the lead role. In each book, how do you decide whose story you’re going to tell?
It made sense to continue the Iron Fey series with Ethan.  Meghan’s story is done; she fulfilled her destiny and became who she was meant to be all along.  But what about the family and brother she left behind?  His story is just beginning.  He has a lifetime of resentment built up from hating the fey, what happens when he is forced into their world once more?  The Lost Prince answers that.

You book is fabulously visual, any tricks that you use to create such a real faery world? Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Oh, thank you!  When I created the Nevernever, I wanted it to have that surreal, dreamlike quality, so when writing a scene in Faeryland, one of my tricks is to write the landscape as normal, but to include something that is just slightly off about it.  Just enough to give it a disconcerting feeling, like you’re really not sure if you’re dreaming or not.

You’ve included a lot of references to Shakespeare and other classics (for obvious reasons) Are you a big fan of Shakespeare’s plays? Do you have any tips for kids reading Shakespeare for the first time?
I love Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  I think cultivating a love of books and stories in kids is the most important thing for getting them to read anything.  When I was younger, I was a total bookworm.  That hasn’t changed, except now I make up my own stories.

What’s next? More vampires or more fey, or something completely different?
Well, after I finish the Blood of Eden series and the Call of the Forgotten series, I do have something very different in mind.  Sadly, I can’t say anything about it, yet.  But hopefully I’ll be able to share soon.

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Oh… how intriguing! A big thanks to Julie (and Harlequin) for helping to see out the year in such a magical fashion! If you or your teens are into paranormal or fantasy reading, I’d suggest that you take a look at The Lost Prince, and the Iron Fey series.

And with that, we’re almost done for 2012. Keep an eye out on Monday for a special TBYL Chrissy message before we sign out…