Paperback: May 2nd
eBook: May 16th
The year is 1882 Scotland, and the auld alliance betwixt king and fey has long been forgotten. Men of science, backed by barons of industry, push the boundaries of technology. When Sir Walter Conrad discovers a new energy source, one that could topple nations and revolutionize society, the race to dominate its ownership begins. But the excavation and use of this energy source will have dire consequences for both humans and fey. For an ancient enemy stirs, awakened by Sir Walter’s discovery.
Outcast half-fey Effie of Glen Coe is the Empire’s only hope at averting the oncoming disaster. Effie finds herself embroiled in the conflict, investigating the eldritch evil spreading throughout the Highlands. As she struggles against the greed of mighty lords and to escape the clutches of the queen’s minions, her comfortable world is shattered. Racing to thwart the growing menace, she realizes the only thing that can save them all is a truce no one wants.
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An exclusive interview with the author!
1. Tell our readers a little about yourself and your work.
THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN is set in Scotland, where I lived and studied history at University for a year. Having a chance to roam throughout the Highlands and live in an old, storied city such as Edinburgh was truly amazing. With its breathtaking glens and lochs, it’s easy to see why the country is often used for romantic settings.
But I didn’t set out to write a novel set in Scotland. I started with a character, a young orphaned girl who suffered at the hands of politicians hundreds of miles away. That situation reminded me of Scotland’s history with London, and the tale grew from there. The girl became half fey, part of a dying race oppressed by centuries of scathing propaganda.
Added in were creatures out of folklore, real-life historical figures, and, of course, crank-guns and dirigibles. Adventure and mystery sweep across the countryside in THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN, as auld creatures awaken and new discoveries are made that will rock civilization to its core.
2. What genres do you write or want to write in the future?
I have mostly written different flavors of fantasy throughout my writing career, though I believe any good story will have a blend of elements—suspense, horror, mystery, romance, etc—and I don’t set out to write strictly within one genre. I’m currently working on a YA novel, THE WEIRD OF DANIKA RUCK, that is a coming-of-age tale with hexes and body shaming, and I’m plotting out a series of mysteries set in the Pacific Northwest. There will also be a continuation of THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN, which blends gaslamp fantasy, elements of steampunk, and pulp adventure.
3. What attracted you to City Owl Press?
Editor Heather McCorkle Tweeted using #MSWL while I was searching for a home for THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN. Her wish for historical/fantasy/steampunk submissions lined up well with the elements in the novel, so I researched City Owl Press. Their existing titles, pro-active marketing, friendly atmosphere, and the experience of their editing staff all drew me in. But what sold me were Heather’s initial notes. She really understood the book and her suggestions have already made the overall work stronger.
4. What has your experience been like working with City Owl Press?
The encouragement and support I’ve already received from the folks at City Owl Press has been amazing. I’m excited to see where this adventure goes!
5. Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?
Short and sweet—still happily writing, with a few more books in this series published.
6. Tell our readers why they should pick up your book.
THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN considers the question: What if access to a power source that would fuel an incredible industrial revolution were blocked by social and political prejudices? Yet at its heart, the journey is that of a young orphan who has learned to hide all her life, never really knowing her place nor why society shuns her kind. I think readers will relate to this insecurity and the courage it takes to fight for justice.