Hi everyone! It's my turn to turn the spotlight on yet another of HarperTeen's amazing books coming out in the winter of 2016. And, to make it even better, I get to talk about the newest book from my friend Wendy Higgins, THE GREAT HUNT.
You guys - I have read this book. And, IT IS INCREDIBLE. And, I am dying here, because I need the next book, like, yesterday. I could gush for literally HOURS about it, but for now, I'll let Wendy tell you all about it. This is going to be a long post, full of so much awesomesauce - make sure you read all the way to the end. You don't want to miss entering the three - yes, I said THREE - giveaways at the end. (Don't forget to look for the secret word for today! Hint: it's in orange.)
Okay - I'll shut up for now. On to the good stuff.
The Great Hunt, by Wendy Higgins
Publish Date: March 8, 2016
Genre: young adult fantasy
To Pre-Order: Amazon * Barnes & Noble
(From Goodreads) Kill the beast. Win the girl.
A strange beast stirs fear in the kingdom of Lochlanach, terrorizing towns with its brutality and hunger. In an act of desperation, a proclamation is sent to all of Eurona—kill the creature and win the ultimate prize: the daughter of King Lochson’s hand in marriage.
Princess Aerity understands her duty to the kingdom though it pains her to imagine marrying a stranger. It would be foolish to set her sights on any particular man in the great hunt, but when a brooding local hunter, Paxton Seabolt, catches her attention, there’s no denying the unspoken lure between them…or his mysterious resentment.
Paxton is not keen on marriage. Nor does he care much for spoiled royals and their arcane laws. He’s determined to keep his focus on the task at hand—ridding the kingdom of the beast and protecting his family—yet Princess Aerity continues to challenge his notions with her unpredictability and charm. But as past secrets collide with present desires, dire choices threaten everything Paxton holds dear.
Inspired by the Grimm Brothers’ tale, “The Singing Bone,” New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins delivers a dark fantasy filled with rugged hunters, romantic tension, outlawed magic, and a princess willing to risk all to save her people.
Thank you so much for talking with me today, Wendy, on my stop of the Harper Winter 2016 Blog Tour. I can imagine this is an exciting time for you, as you just said a final farewell to your first published series, and now you are getting ready to launch a brand new series.
WH: Thank you, Krista! First off, I never thought I would be a published author, so this entire career change has been a surreal dream-come-true. The largest surprise, by far, was when Sweet Reckoning hit the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists. Until that moment I still felt like getting published had just been a lucky fluke. I cried ALL the tears that day!
THE GREAT HUNT is very different from the Sweet Trilogy. Was it difficult to make the transition from writing about familiar names and places to writing about the fantasy world of Eurona?
WH: It was a very difficult transition for me. VERY. Writing high fantasy requires so much detail, but I’m not a detail person, so for me it took many revisions. In each revision I added more detail and layering. I’m still not 100% confident about it, but I do love the story and I hope that shows in the telling.
Describe Paxton Seabolt, THE GREAT HUNT’s hero, in five words.
WH: Quiet, Intense, Loyal, Distrustful, and Rugged
The Great Hunt is based on the Brothers Grimm’s The Singing Bone. Why that fairytale? Is it a favorite of yours?
WH: Honestly, no, I don’t like that story, hahaha. I find all of the Grimm stories too strange and creepy for my tastes. I always wanted to be that cool goth girl who loved wicked stuff, but I just wasn’t. Kuddos to all the Grimm girls out there! Two years ago, when the Sweet Trilogy was heading to an end, I knew I needed to be working on something new but I had no story ideas. Fairy tale retellings were just on the rise, so I picked up my dusty Grimm’s copy and started flipping through. I was intrigued by the title “The Singing Bone,” and when I read the intro I was like, “OH MY GOSH…” Immediate inspiration. I kept reading and got the heebie-jeebies. So really, The Great Hunt was only inspired by the beginning of that tale. :)
If you had to liken Princess Aerity to a Disney princess, which one most closely resembles her and why?
WH: Jasmine from Aladdin comes to mind first, because she’s this lonely girl stuck in a castle, surrounded by silks, dreaming of adventure, flying, and love.
The Great Hunt is a duology – when does the second book come out? Does it have a title yet?
WH: No title yet. It comes out one year after the first, so Winter 2017.
Does your husband read your books?
WH: My husband has read all of my books to date except The Great Hunt, but he’s waiting for the final copy so he can consult the maps, lol.
One final question. Rollercoasters – yay or nay?
IWH: t depends…I love regular old-school, up&down rollercoasters, but I’m not a fan of the ones that go upside down.
Thank you so much, Wendy, for taking the time to answer my questions about you and your new series. I’m so excited to see what else you have planned for us!
WH: Thanks, Krista! *smooches*
After earning a Creative Writing degree from George Mason University and a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction from Radford, Wendy taught high school English until achieving her dream job as a full-time writer.
Wendy lives on the Eastern Shore of Virginia with her husband, daughter, son, and little doggie Rue.
#1 – A Harper Teen Winter 2016 Catalog prizepack of 40+ books*
*All YA titles in the winter2016 catalog with the exception of The Siren by Kiera Cass, Yellow Brick War by Danielle Paige and Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard.*
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#2 – 5 Finished Copies from the Harper Teen Fall 2015 Catalog
5 books are: The Lies About Truth, Walk on Earth A Stranger, Dreamland, Dumplin’, and Da Vinci’s Tiger
Entry rules for prize #2:
Collect the daily words and phrases from each blog stop during the Harper Winter 2016 Tour (a total of 45). Once you’ve collected them all, email the saying to: HarperTeenTour@gmail.com
1.) Winner must have a valid US mailing address to receive the prize
2.) Winner must be over 13
3.) Only one (1) entry per person for Prize #2 – duplicates will be deleted.
4.) Only a completed phrase will be accepted as an entry – do not email each word/phrase daily. Wait until you have the complete saying and then email in.
5.) All email submissions must be received by 11:59 PM EST 11/30/2015.
6.) Winner will be selected 12/1/2015 and will have 48 hours to claim their prize before another is selected.
7.) Participating blogs and bloggers are not responsible for unsent, damaged, and/or stolen prizes sent by the publisher.
Your secret word for today is: Make
#3 - Print ARC of THE GREAT HUNT + signed Wendy Higgins swag
This final giveaway is one of my own. I am so anxious to have others experience how incredible this book is, that I'm giving away a print ARC of THE GREAT HUNT. To sweeten the pot, Wendy Higgins has generously donated some signed swag from all of her books (thank you, Wendy!). This giveaway is international.
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