Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Interview with fantasy author Karin Rita Gastreich

Novelist Karin Rita Gastreich joins me today to talk about her new fantasy release, Daughter of Aithne.

During her virtual book tour, Karin will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit her other tour stops and enter there, too!

Karin Rita Gastreich writes stories of ordinary women and the extraordinary paths they choose. She lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she is part of the biology faculty at Avila University. An ecologist by vocation, Karin has wandered forests and wildlands all her life. Her pastimes include camping, hiking, music, and flamenco dance. In addition to THE SILVER WEB trilogy, Karin has published short stories in World Jumping, Zahir, Adventures for the Average Woman, and 69 Flavors of Paranoia. She is a recipient of the Spring 2011 Andrews Forest Writer’s Residency.
Welcome, Karin. Please share a little bit about your current release.
The third novel of my fantasy trilogy, Daughter of Aithne is the culmination of a conflict that has spanned generations. It is the story of two powerful women – Eolyn, Queen of MoisehĂ©n, and Taesara, Princess of Roenfyn – who confront each other in a final, decisive battle for the throne of the Mage Kings.  

What inspired you to write this book?
I’m a big fan of history and historical fiction, and I’ve always enjoyed stories of women in medieval and Renaissance times. I wanted to write a novel about women coming to power in a feudal society. The story is set in a fantasy world, but the characters are based on true women in history. As the series finale, Daughter of Aithne is the result of a long struggle by women to assert their destiny in a world traditionally dominated by men.

Excerpt from Daughter of Aithne:
Eolyn shifted in her seat. A thousand words stood poised upon her lips, of which only a handful could be chosen and delivered. Each conversation in the coming days had to be undertaken with great care, especially when it came to this mage.

“Why did Thelyn come for us, and not you?” she asked.

“I was needed to track down the magas still residing in the City,” Corey replied. “Besides, Thelyn was the better mage for that task.”

Mariel, she thought. He would not have had the heart to bind Mariel.

A small sign, perhaps, that Mage Corey could yet be counted among her friends.

“I understand you are to oversee their interrogation,” Eolyn said.

“It is true, my Lady Queen.”

“I have expressed my concerns about this to the King. He assures me that you and your mages will not be permitted to—”

“My Lady Queen, if there is one thing you have learned in the years of our friendship, it is that I will do whatever must be done in the moment at hand, and I will harden my heart to see it through.”

“That may be the case, Mage Corey. Yet I also know that words are your most effective tool. You have never resorted to violence to obtain what you require.”

Corey let her statement hang in the air.

Eolyn averted her gaze, suddenly aware of the icy tension in her hands.

I, too, am being interrogated.

“You did not bring a scribe,” she said quietly.

“What need have I for a scribe, my Lady Queen?” He softened his tone. “We are, as of yet, simply conversing.”

What exciting story are you working on next?
Now that I’ve finished The Silver Web, I’m working on a contemporary fantasy collection entitled Path of Souls. Set in my home town of Kansas City, this series features mature women protagonists who take on a realm of supernatural beings in a brutal contest for dominion over human souls.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I wrote my first story when I was in grade school. I’ve been writing ever since.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I don’t write fiction full time, though I do a lot of other writing in my day job. I’m a biology professor and department chair at my university, so all my fiction writing is squeezed into the edges of my life. During the summer, when we are on break, I write almost every day. When the semester is in session, I set aside 2-3 hours a week as my sacred writing time.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
As a behavioral biologist, I know a lot of interesting and sometimes crazy stories about animals and nature. I often use those stories to inform my fiction.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Everything. I still kind of want to be everything. That’s why I write and journey with my imagination. One life is too short!

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
If you like high adventure, complex characters, and a healthy dose of heart-wrenching romance, you will love my books! Daughter of Aithne can be read without having finished the first two books of the trilogy, but for a richer experience, I recommend starting at the beginning with Eolyn, Book One of The Silver Web.  


Purchase link for Eolyn, Book One of THE SILVER WEB

Purchase link for Sword of Shadows, Book Two of THE SILVER WEB

Purchase link for Daughter of Aithne, Book Three of THE SILVER WEB

Thank you for being a guest on my blog!

Thank you for having me!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Karin Gastreich said...

Thank you for hosting!

Unknown said...

Congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win :)

Cali W. said...

Thanks for the giveaway; I like the excerpt. :)

Victoria Alexander said...

Sounds like a great book and I love the cover! Thanks for sharing :)

Karin Gastreich said...

Thank you, Lisa, Cali, and Victoria! The cover art and design is by Thomas Vandenberg, who did the covers for all three books.

Ally Swanson said...

Hope you are having a wonderful weekend! Looking forward to checking out this book!

Karin Gastreich said...

Thank you, Ally!

Bernie Wallace said...

What book would you like to see a prequel to? Thanks for the giveaway. I hope that I win. Bernie W BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

Karin Gastreich said...

Hi Joseph! Of the books I've written, I'd love to see a prequel to EOLYN! Of the books I've read...That's a little harder to say. Maybe N.K. Jemisin's THE HUNDRED THOUSAND KINGDOMS.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win!

Karin Gastreich said...

Thank you, Carole!

Bernie Wallace said...

What literary character do you must relate to? Thanks for the giveaway. I hope that I win. Bernie W BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

Karin Gastreich said...

When I was a girl, I liked Laura Ingalls Wilder a lot. Nowadays, it's harder to say. There are a lot of great heroines out there; the mark of a good book is a heroine that I can relate to, and I've read many of those!

Ally Swanson said...

Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!

Karin Gastreich said...

Thanks, Ally!

Ally Swanson said...

Excellent post! I really enjoyed reading it!