(A Two Realms Novella, #1)
by Ariella Moon
Publication date: October 3rd, 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Viviane, the new Lady of the Lake and High Priestess of Avalon, accepts a challenge from Merlin unaware her bold actions will have tragic consequences. Two of her priestesses are turned to stone. A forbidden love deserts her. Now alone, she has six young handmaidens to train and protect.
When Morgan le Fay demands assistance with a spell that could change the balance of power in the Two Realms, Viviane refuses her. But what if Morgan’s secret knowledge could restore the stone priestesses? Will an alliance prompt Viviane’s love to return? Or will the gamble cost her all she holds dear?
~AUTHOR INTERVIEW with Ariella Moon~
1) What gave you the inspiration for the storyline?
In The Viking Mist, my upcoming sequel to The Beltane Escape, Talfryn, a half-Viking/half-Fairy, is thrust into a deadly quest to recover a stolen magic potion. My editor said, “Your readers want more Merlin. More of the Lady of the Lake. More magic.”
My muse whispered, “Tell them how the potion came into existence.” From this cacophony, was born the idea to work backwards in time with a series of companion novellas. The Amber Elixir gives the backstory for the magic potion central to The Viking Mist.
2) Are there any hidden themes in the book that you hope readers will discover?
The exploration of love—supportive, unrequited, and estranged—underpins The Amber Elixir. Love elicits such heightened emotions. So, too, does female power and ambition, another theme in the novella.
3) Are any of the characters based on real people you know?
Aspects of me are sprinkled among the young handmaidens, but otherwise, no.
4) Who has influenced you most as a writer?
I was a voracious reader while I was growing up. Reviewers, especially of The Beltane Escape, have noted some of my childhood influences, including Lewis Carroll’s Through The Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There, C. S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia, and L. Frank Baum’s, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Later, Marion Zimmer Bradley’s The Mists of Avalon opened the door for female-centric Arthurian tales like The Amber Elixir, and Gregory Maguire’s Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, further inspired me.
5) If you could have any three literary characters over to your place for game night, who would you invite, what would you play, what would you serve, and why?
The thought of hosting any kind of party terrifies me!
I would invite Hermione Granger because she is brilliant and I love being around smart people. For the same reason, the second invitation would go to Alexia Maccon, the Lady Woolsey, from Gail Carriger’s wonderful Steampunk novels. The final invitation would go to Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple. I would serve tea, brownies, and strawberries. The tea would be a nod to the Brits. The brownies would be because Alexia shares my weakness for sweets, and strawberries so there would be something healthy on the menu. We’d play Clue.
6) Do you feel that you can ever have too many books?
One can never have too many books. However, it is quite possible to have too few bookcases.
Ariella Moon draws upon her experiences as a shaman and former teen to create magical Young Adult fiction. Her series include The Two Realms Trilogy, a medieval Scotland and Fairy fantasy adventure, and The Teen Wytche Saga, a series of sweet contemporary paranormal romances. Moon’s “Covert Hearts” appears in Second Chances: A Romance Writers of America Collection.
Ms. Moon spent her childhood flying to rooftops in her dreams and searching for a magical wardrobe that would transport her to Narnia. Extreme math anxiety and taller students who mistook her for a leaning post, marred her youth. Despite these horrors, she graduated summa cum laude from the University of California at Davis. She lives a nearly normal life doting on her extraordinary daughter, two shamelessly spoiled dogs, and a media-shy dragon.
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