Tuesday, September 20, 2016

THE QUEEN OF BLOOD comes out today!!!

I'm so excited to share THE QUEEN OF BLOOD with you!  It's the first in a new epic fantasy series from Harper Voyager called THE QUEENS OF RENTHIA, and it's set in a world filled with nature spirits.  But these aren't your sweet, frolicking pastoral sprites... These spirits want to kill all humans, and only certain women -- queens -- can control them.

This book was born in blood.

Ooh, that sounded nice and dramatic.  Must remember that line.  Anyway, this is what happened: I had just arrived at a writing retreat in the Poconos.  Beautiful place.  Forests.  Hills.  Prancing deer and babbling brooks, and so forth.  Every writer was given an adorable wood cabin nestled beneath the pines.  I was walking up to mine, marveling at the trees, reveling in the bird song, not watching my feet... and I tripped on the step up to the porch and fell flat on my face.  Cut my lip.  And that was the exact moment that this book -- specifically, the idea of bloodthirsty nature spirits -- was born. 

Trees + blood = story.

Despite its thoroughly embarrassingly klutzy origin -- seriously, the step was right there!  I saw it! -- I loved writing this book.  It was such an immersive writing experience.  Every day I'd sit down at my desk and feel as if I'd walked through a portal and into a city suspended between massive trees, where, let's face it, I probably would have been instantly killed, but Daleina and Ven -- an idealistic student and a banished warrior -- worked to protect their people.

I have always loved fantasy.  I was that kid curled up in the corner of the library with a David Eddings, Terry Brooks, Robin McKinley, or Mercedes Lackey book, reading it for the twelfth time.  Every night, I checked the back of my closet for a way into Narnia, and every birthday, I wished for a magic wand (a real one, please, not a toy) or a dragon's egg (that would hatch a friendly telepathic dragon, of course).

The thing that I love the most about both writing and reading fantasy is the way it takes you on a journey -- sweeps you off on an adventure, and then brings you back again, maybe slightly changed, a little stronger, a little braver.  I believe that fantasy literature, at its core, is -- or can be -- a literature of hope and empowerment.  That's what Daleina and Ven's story has been for me.  And so, I hope you'll join me in journeying with them!

Welcome to Renthia!  Just watch out for the trees.  They bite.

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Monday, September 19, 2016

Excerpt: First Three Chapters of THE QUEEN OF BLOOD

THE QUEEN OF BLOOD comes out tomorrow!!! Woohoo!  *checks stash of chocolate, eats stash of chocolate* The first three chapters are now online:

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3

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Thursday, September 15, 2016


Very excited to announce the sale of my next middle-grade book, THE STONE GIRL'S STORY, to Anne Hoppe at Clarion Books / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt!!! Huzzah!!! 


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Excerpt: First Two Chapters of THE QUEEN OF BLOOD

THE QUEEN OF BLOOD comes out one week from today!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! The first two chapters are now online:

Chapter 1
Chapter 2

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Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Excerpt: Chapter One of THE QUEEN OF BLOOD

It's exactly 2 weeks until THE QUEEN OF BLOOD comes out! Eeeep! You can read Chapter 1 here: https://www.facebook.com/notes/harper-voyager/the-queen-of-blood-chapter-1/1096449987091362

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