Today on the blog we have an author interview with YA author M.J. Mallon. Here, she tells us about her brand new release, Golden Healer, which is the second book in a YA paranormal fantasy series. Links are at the end of the interview. A huge thank you to M.J. Mallon for joining us.
- Congratulations on the launch of your new book. Can you tell us a bit about it?
Many thanks Chantelle, I’m delighted to be here today to talk about my new book Golden Healer, the 2nd in my YA paranormal fantasy series The Curse of Time. The story is largely influenced by magical realism and has a strange, mysterious aspect to it.. Magic realism, ‘is characterized by the matter-of-fact inclusion of fantastic or mythical elements into seemingly realistic fiction’
So, in the otherwise normal day-to-day setting of Cambridge, UK, I imagined a hidden crystal cottage with powerful wizard stones, a girl trapped in a mirror, and a beautiful boy of shadows who brings temptation, conflict and uncertainty.
In Book One Bloodstone, the main protagonist, teenager Amelina Scott, is creatively inclined, she paints, writes poetry and is a gifted musician. Her crystal infused paints bring the painted ‘creature,’ (the caretaker of the cottage,) alive. She is guided by the owner Leanne to discover her gifts as a Krystallos, able to wield the power of the wizard stones to restore her family’s happiness. There are many sub-themes, mysteries, and interpretations of the story. The relentlessness of time, deception, who to trust, and mental health issues, ( including entrapment by our mental health issues – represented by the mirror girl Esme’s dialogues discussing self harm.) In book two, further adventures continue and Amelina discovers more about the roller coaster of time and Ryder’s shadow demonic side.
2. What age group is it at aimed at?
It’s aimed at teenagers going through the turmoil of those years. But many adults have also enjoyed reading the tale, with its poetic, (each chapter begins with a poem,) and philosophical aspects.
3. Where did the idea for the book come from?
Juniper Artland’s crystal grotto by Anya Gallaccio: https://www.jupiterartland.org/art/anya-gallaccio-the-light-pours-out-of-me/ The Corpus Christi Chronophage clock invented by John C Taylor, OBE. https://www.johnctaylor.com/the-chronophage/corpus-chronophage/
A witch’s black cat that visited me in my garden! Oscar Wilde’s, a picture of Dorian Gray Musical aspects courtesy of my hubby, a keen guitarist who wanted to be in a band when he was younger.
4. This is the 2nd book in the series – do you know how many there will be?
I think perhaps three. There are three Chronophage clocks, the grasshopper, the midsummer fly and the dragon!
5. Your main character is very creative – what made you write her this way?
Perhaps because my creativity has been stifled for many years and I wanted to break free of my dreary day job! When I was younger I suffered with anxiety and depression because I wasn’t doing what I wanted to.
6. What are you working on at the moment?
I have lots of projects on the go… A short vampire paranormal story which I’d like to develop, a poetry book, and the 3rd book in this series.
7. What do you most enjoy about writing YA?
I like to keep young! My hubby always teases me that I think I will live forever.
8. What would you say are your main character’s main strengths and weaknesses?
Strengths: determination to succeed, restore and keep her family safe from unhappiness. Weakness: she can be a little selfish and immature at times. But, less so, as she becomes older and more wiser.
9. How did you approach the world-building needed for the fantasy/paranormal genre?
I don’t tend to plot but maybe I should! The world building grew from bursts of imaginative energy. There are pros and cons, when imagination is allowed free rein. Biggest downside – lots of edits!
10. Can you recommend any similar books for young readers?
It’s quite unique, so somewhat difficult to say… But there are similarities to Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials, or at least a poet/tutor, at my last job told me so. That was a huge compliment as I love this series, exploring the fight between good and evil, wisdom and darkness in a philosophical way, as is also the case with my Curse of Time series.
Also, in some ways, it has similarities to the surreal wackiness of Alice in Wonderland… a story I love!
Thank you M.J. Mallon for joining us on The Glorious Outsiders today. If you would like to find out more about her and her books, the links are below!
Universal book link: https://books2read.com/u/mgjY67
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/mjmallonauthor