Wednesday 10 April 2013

Demons in The Big Easy and author interview.

Demons in the Big EasyDemons in the Big Easy by Jamie Marchant

Book Synopsis

Adventurous in her youth, Cassandra built gateways between Domhan and its parallel realm of Earth. Now she’s too old for that kind of thing. But something is making it easier for demons to pass into Domhan. Not only that, but their behaviour becomes inexplicable: whenever Cassandra banishes one, it laughs at her rather than resists, and it promises it will soon devour her essence and that of every resident of her small village. Cassandra is certain such a thing is impossible, for strong wards protect her village. 

But then Cassandra’s granddaughter Aine falls through an unstable gateway. Cassandra is the only one within a hundred miles capable of creating a gateway and bringing Aine back. Despite her aching joints, Cassandra goes after her, and the gateway lands her in New Orleans. But something goes wrong with her tracking spell, which indicates Aine exists in four different places at once. As Cassandra struggles to find the true location of her granddaughter in the Big Easy, she discovers the source of the demons’ confidence. Now, with an unlikely pair of allies—her timid granddaughter and a homeless man who may or may not be crazy—she has to not only save her granddaughter but also prevent both Domhan and Earth from being overrun by demons.

My review 4 of 5 stars.

This may be a short story of only 74 pages but this book is not lacking in any way shape or form.

I obviously mis-read the books synopsis because at first I thought Cassandra's world was Earth and that she could open gateways to Domhan, and the book was actually set in the past. I was wrong.

Marchant has created a world very similar to what life on Earth would have been like a few 100 years ago and mixed it with modern-day New Orleans to give you this great mix between our reality and magic. I ask  myself what would Earth be like if we had magic and Demons and the answer would probably be something like this.

An enjoyable read that allowed the story to flow freely, but leaving the reader wanting that little bit more.

Author Bio

???????????????????????????????Jamie Marchant lives in Auburn, Alabama, with her husband, son, and four cats, which (or so she’s been told) officially makes her a cat lady. She teaches writing and literature at Auburn University. Her first novel The Goddess's Choice was released in April 2012 from Reliquary Press. She released Demons in the Big Easy in January 2013. She is hard at work on the sequel to The Goddess’s Choice, tentatively titled The Soul Stone. Her short fiction has been published in Bards & Sages, The World of Myth, and

Hello Jamie and welcome to Booky Ramblings.

First off tell us a little bit about yourself. From early childhood, I’ve been immersed in books. My mother, an avid reader herself, read to us, and my older sister filled my head with fairy tales. Taking into consideration my love for literature and the challenges of supporting myself as a writer, I pursued a Ph.D. in American literature, which I received in 1998. I started teaching writing and literature at Auburn University and discovered the excitement of teaching. But in doing so, I put my true passion on the back-burner and neglected my muse. Instead, for a few years, I wrote literary criticism. Then one day, in the midst of writing a critical piece, I realized I had no interest in doing so. What I wanted to do was write fantasy novels. My muse thus revived, I began the book that was to become The Goddess’s Choice. I have an entire series planned. I live in Auburn, Alabama, with my husband and son. I still teach writing and literature at Auburn University.

What inspired you to write your first book? My first book, The Goddess's Choice, originates deep within my childhood. My sister Jalane--she is ten years older than me--told me stories, fairy tales mostly:  "Midas and His Golden Touch," "Little Red Riding Hood," "Hansel and Gretel." But my favorite was always "The Princess and the Glass Hill" or "The Glass Mountain" as my sister titled it. I had her tell that story over and over again. I was captivated by the bold hero on his magical horses of bronze, silver, and gold. When I had a child of my own, I wanted to pass that fairy tale on. My son, Jesse, loved it every bit as much as I had. One day after telling it to him, it came to me that the story could be so much more than five pages and sparse details. However, I didn’t want to write a children’s story but the type of epic fantasy I enjoy as an adult. I upped the dramatic tension, villainy, and sexuality of the piece to create something far different from the original fairy tale. The Goddess’s Choice is intended for an adult audience.

Demons in the Big Easy was inspired by a prompt for an anthology about older women heroes. As I thought about the anthology, Cassandra came to life. Her world and the rest of the story followed. My novella didn’t make it into the anthology, but it got a positive enough response that I decided to publish it.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books? How hard promoting is. I thought once I found a publisher for The Goddess’s Choice my work was done. I didn’t realize how much work an author has to put into promoting if she wants her novels to succeed.

How long does it take you to write a book? The Goddess’s Choice took about five years from the beginning of the idea to publication. I wrote Demons in the Big Easy much faster, about six months, but it is a much shorter work.

Can you share a little of your current work in progress with us? I’m almost finished with the sequel to The Goddess’s Choice, titled The Soul Stone, in which Samantha struggles to solidify her rule, and Robrek must confront a bigger threat to the safety of the joined kingdoms. I’m also working on an urban fantasy novel, The Bull Riding Witch, which has a princess from a parallel realm switching bodies with a rodeo bull rider.

Describe your main character, in 5 words. Tough, determined, resourceful, intelligent, and old.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing? It varies a lot depending on how well the writing is flowing. Generally, Tuesdays and Thursdays are my writing days. I teach MWF and try to fit all the work from my day job into those days so I have Tuesdays and Thursdays free to write. I also write a lot on the weekends.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers? Yes, that anger and harboring the desire for revenge hurts you more than those you are angry at. They will suffer for their bad actions without any effort on your part, and your bitterness only warps your own soul. It is a lesson Robbie has to learn in The Goddess’s Choice.

Which authors would you say inspired you to write? Mercedes Lackey would be my greatest mentor. I’ve always said I wanted to be Lackey when I grew up. I tried to make my worlds as full realized and vital as Lackey’s Valdemar.

Now we have some random questions for you if you have the extra time.

If someone wrote your biography, what do you think the title should be? Anyone trying to write my biography would be bored to tears, so I guess Bored to Tears would be a good title. I would hope no one ever took up that task.

What book are you currently reading? Jacqueline Carey’s Dark Currents: Agent of Hel

What is in your fridge right now? About a dozen cartoons of yogurt, a gallon of milk, cheese, and a roast that is going bad.

Favourite Ice Cream flavour? Peppermint with hot fudge

Cats or dogs? Cats, definitely cats. I have four.

Pet Peeves? Adding an entirely superfluous “at” to the end of your questions, as in “Where are you at?” Ugh, it makes me cringe.

 Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions and thank you for asking us to review your book. It was a pleasure.

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