Friday, March 21, 2014

Sophie, in Shadow: my new young adult historical fantasy

In World War One an orphaned English girl is sent to live in India, where kidnapping, enemy spies, and terrorist plots all challenge her extraordinary powers.

It’s 1914. Sixteen year old Sophie Pritchard, orphaned two years earlier by the sinking of the RMS Titanic, is about to begin a new life in the unfamiliar world of British India. For Sophie, still devastated by her parents' death, India proves a dangerously unsettling environment. Are her terrifying experiences in Kali’s temple and the Park Street cemetery hallucinations, or has she somehow been drawn back through the centuries as a witness to dark places in Calcutta’s past?

Sophie has become an unwilling traveler in a timeless zone where past, present and future co-exist. Kidnapping, enemy spies, and terrorist plots all play their part against the background of a world at war and growing unrest in the Indian subcontinent. Soon Sophie’s powers of precognition will be called upon to help thwart a conspiracy that could incite a bloodbath in Calcutta, and deliver India into enemy hands.

"Sophie, in Shadow deftly weaves intrigue, spies, and mystics with more than a dash of the occult into a story that will captivate any reader." Linda DeMeulemeester, author of the award-winning Grim Hill series.

Release date March 30, 2014 from Thistledown Press. Available for order now.

Stories of the Mystic North

 The popularity of the Walt Disney movie Frozen has brought fresh attention to Hans Christian Andersen’s much loved story The Snow Queen. Andersen’s tale of a brave and determined girl who sets out on an epic adventure to rescue her friend from the Snow Queen’s frozen palace has inspired not only this new Disney film, but a very long list of other film, live theatre and fictional adaptations. Versions of Andersen’s wicked queen appear in C.S. Lewis’s Narnia books, in Phillip Pullman’s The Golden Compass, and in countless other retellings. There's a comprehensive list on the SurLaLune Fairy Tales site.

My own reworking of The Snow Queen follows Gerda’s journey quite closely, with the addition of some mythology from the Finnish epic The Kalevala -- but be warned, there’s a twist at the end.