Week 42 of the 2018 Reading Challenge 'A book with non-human characters'
It doesn’t take anyone long to realize that Amazon is flooded with supernatural book choices. It can become exhausting, scrolling page after page, searching for something to stand out. In situations like that, I find it easier to revisit authors I'm already familiar with.
This weeks book, ‘Wolf’s Blood,’ was written by self-published author Malinda Andrews. Who is Malinda Andrews you ask? Well, I was lucky enough to have her participate in a Q&A, so keep reading to find out more.
Q & A With Malinda Andrews
If you had to describe yourself in a few sentences what would you say?
I would say that I am a wife, mother, and someone that carves out time for my “full time” job of being an author after the other responsibilities.
Who is your favorite author and why?
I don’t know that I can pinpoint one author that is my favorite….I love Jane Austen, Kathy Reichs, Diana Gabaldon. But my heart belongs to fantasy! I grew up reading David Eddings, Terry Brooks, CS Lewis, and Tolkien. So all of the above? They were all pretty large influences on my writing.
My one guilty pleasure is playing Elder Scrolls Online, a large MMORP. I enjoy questing and going through the lore that the game developers created.
Dream holiday destination:
Scotland. Hands down I would return to Scotland. I wish I would have had more time there back in 2013!
Cats or dogs? Tea or coffee? City or country?
Both, Tea (I’m caffeine sensitive, so no coffee for me!), Country girl all the way! I used to own and train horses…can’t do that in the city!
Do you have a favorite song?
It varies, most of the time I have different playlists for different moods or WIP’s. But always gravitate towards Lindsey Stirling and Celtic music.
When did you first decide to become a writer?
I don’t remember if it was a conscious decision until college when declaring my major in Creative Writing. I’ve always written stories, even as a kid I would write little things and then make them into a “book.” That creative desire was just always there!
Self-publish, traditionally publish or both and why?
I tried the traditional route for a bit but didn’t get any traction. I did a lot of research on Self Publishing and decided that route was for me. I just have too many stories to tell and want to share them without a “gatekeeper” telling me if they are “good enough” or not. Thankfully, people seem to really enjoy my stories so far.
Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym?
I did for a while, simply because I write across many different genres. A lot of advice I’d read said to have different names with different genres. But that would mean multiple social media accounts, and with raising my son and taking care of the house, I just don’t have the time for that! Plus I know a lot of readers read across different types of books. So everything is under Malinda Andrews, and my tagline is “A story for all.”
Out of all your books, who is your favorite character, and which book do they come from?
Oh gosh, I’d have to say my all time favorites are Riona and Feoras. You can’t have one without the other as they’re a bonded Ryder and Dragon. I think because Riona was my first main character I feel a certain closeness with how she thinks and feels. Feoras is always fun to write as he is full of sass, snark, and love for his Ryder. They are the main characters in The Incalescent Trilogy. The first is titled Through the Mountains.
Have you got any nifty tricks to combat writer's block?
If I feel writer's block coming on, I usually take a break and go for a walk, read a book, or work on a different WIP. Usually I have multiple projects in various stages lying around. I’ve found that if I take a little break that whatever was blocking me resolves itself and I come back with a renewed enthusiasm to the project.
Where do you see Malinda Andrews in 10 years?
Continuing to publish! At last count, I have the notes and ideas for about 60 books across multiple genres including several series that are 12 and 13 books long…and I’ve only published eight titles so far!
I love my son dearly, but I am looking forward to when he’s old enough for school, and this momma gets more structured writing time!
Descending from generations of Loup Garou—immortal wolf shape shifters—makes living life in the modern world a bit complicated. Bryna Whealan’s nights are spent managing her family pub, and days are consumed with keeping the wolf inside controlled. Life was utterly predictable and comfortable, and she liked it that way. At least until a rogue wolf showed up, and someone breaks into her pub, creating unease through her pack.
A fateful meeting brings Ethan Donnelly into Bryna’s life, forcing her to make decisions based on their immediately undeniable bond. But due to his studies of supernatural creatures as a professor of Occult Anthropology, Ethan is a dangerous match. Bryna risks her entire pack’s safety simply by talking to him.
When her ex-fiancé rolls into town, and mysterious wolves infringe upon her pack’s territory, how will Bryna balance keeping her secret and keeping Ethan safe?
From cover to the last page, there was never a dull moment. I completed this book in one sitting, unable to tear myself away, excited for what was going to happen next.
Straight away I knew that Bryna was going to be a strong female character. She approached Ethan first with an undeniable self-confidence. The way Bryna motioned to the bartender to pour her a drink and the way she made Ethan stumble on his words was impressive and uplifting. It’s nice to stumble across tough female characters when I often find I'm reading about weak women who bow down to alpha men.
In my experience, paranormal, fantasy or vampire/werewolf romance are usually heavily loaded with characters. It's not a factor I enjoy, so I tend to shy away from reading those genres of books. I was pleasantly surprised that Malinda kept the characters to a manageable level, allowing me to understand and get to know every one of them.
Honestly, I love a dirty romance, but once in a while, I need a break. That is a bonus when it comes to Malinda Andrews; you are guaranteed a clean adventure. You will not find vulgar language or sex scenes that make you blush in this book.
The storytelling of werewolf legends was fascinating. I wanted the book to dive deeper into the history, scrolls, family trees and ancient artifacts. Malinda put her own spin on the legends which gave it a real authentic vibe. Perhaps there will be more in the next book !!
I finished the novel with a list of unanswered questions, but I wasn’t left feeling cheated, more excited to read the next installment.
Lastly, I would like to give a special thanks to Malinda for taking the time to participate in a Q&A with me. Its been an absolute pleasure.
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