Sunday, 3 May 2015

Blog Tour: Chantress Alchemy by Amy Buttler Greenfield | Guest Post

Chantress Fury (Chantress #3)
Behind 288 Pages
Released: 19 May 2015
Genre: Fantasy, Historical
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Buy Me: Amazon  |  Booktopia  |  Book Depository  |  Fishpond
At the Other End:
The sea is coming. We are coming. And we will drown you all.

With a song, Lucy can control the wind and the water; she can bring castles and kingdoms to their feet. Since Lucy mastered her powers, King Henry has kept her close as he’s rebuilt England. She’s his best ally—and his workhorse. And now he’s called her to investigate attempted murder: His men claim they were almost killed on the Thames…by a mermaid. All Lucy can glean from the creature they’ve captured is a warning: The sea is coming. We are coming. And we will drown you all.

And then the floods begin. Swaths of London are submerged as the people scramble to defend themselves against the water—and the monsters—that are flooding their streets. As mistrust of Lucy's magic grows, the king relies on Nat, Lucy's great love, to guide them through the storm. But Nat is cold and distant to Lucy. He swore his love only a year before, and now he calls her “stranger.”

Lucy is determined to defeat this powerful new magic alone if she must. But then she hears an eerie song within the water…can it mean that she’s not the last Chantress after all?

Sweepingly romantic and crackling with magic, Chantress Fury triumphantly concludes the powerful Chantress trilogy.

Amy Butler Greenfield was a grad student in history when she gave into temptation and became a writer. Since then, she has become an award-winning author. 

Amy grew up in the Adirondack Mountains and later studied history at Williams College, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Oxford. She now lives with her family in England, where she writes, bakes double-dark-chocolate cake, and plots mischief.

Read my interview with Amy here.
Find Amy:
Website  |  Goodreads  |  Twitter  |  Facebook
1. Ravens play a big role in Chantress, and that’s probably down to a real-life encounter I had with a raven at the Tower of London. He didn’t attack or do anything out of the ordinary, just stood and watched me in the most uncanny way. I’d never seen a bird with so much presence. 

2. I had a hard time finding the voice for Chantress. The first drafts were in 3rd person, but the book just didn’t feel right to me.  When I stumbled across some early pages that I’d written in 1st person, I realized that was where I needed to go.  The book was easy to write after that.

3. It took me over five years to write Chantress—partly because of those voice problems, but also because I had a new baby and a transatlantic move to contend with. It took me 18 months to write the second book, and I had just 13 months to write the third. (Notice a pattern there? Deadlines will do that. Good thing for me that there wasn’t a 4th book!) 

4. Chantress was meant to be a single title, but partway through the first draft I suddenly saw that it might actually be three books. During my daughter’s naptime, I furiously scribbled down all my ideas on a sheet of a paper. When my agent sold the first book at auction, editors asked for two more—and I was grateful to have that piece of paper as my starting point.

5. While I was writing Chantress I had prints of the stunning Visscher Panorama of London on my walls so that I could literally “see” Lucy’s world. Printed in 1616, Visscher’s engraving is so detailed that you can actually see the heads on spikes on London Bridge!  

6. I’ve featured a different royal palace in each book: the Tower of London in Chantress, Greenwich Palace in Chantress Alchemy, and Whitehall Palace in Chantress Fury.  These places really did exist, although they’ve undergone a few changes in the Chantress world. In real life, both Greenwich and Whitehall Palaces have been demolished, but you can still visit the Tower of London.

7. Chantress Alchemy had a different ending at first, but it was a bear to write. I was forcing the scene, and every word was a struggle.  When I went back to revise, I saw what the real ending had to be. It was an emotional wrench, but the words flowed out almost faster than I could get them down, and I knew I had the right scene at last.

8.  In Chantress Fury, England is beset by floods and sea monsters. Strangely enough, during the week that I first started plotting out the book, England was hit with some terrible floods.  I set the book aside for a while, and then started writing it in earnest in the winter of 2013-2014.  That winter turned out to be the wettest on record here in England.  Monster waves took out entire sections of roads and rail lines, and here in Oxfordshire the Thames burst its banks, turning fields into lakes and driving many people from their homes. Rationally I knew it had nothing to do with my book, but I was secretly relieved when the draft was done. (And weirdly enough, that’s when the floods finally stopped.)

9. When Audible bought the audio rights to the trilogy, they allowed me to help chose the reader – one of the best writing-related jobs I’ve ever had! We were lucky to get the incredibly gifted Mary Jane Wells, a British actress who lives in America, who makes every line sing and brings every character roaring into life. I don’t know how she does it, but listening to her is like hearing a movie of the book.

10. I’ll always be grateful that I had a chance to write these books, and one reason why is that they got me singing again. I spent a lot of time making music until my mid-20s, when I suddenly stopped.  Writing the Chantress Trilogy made me realize how much I missed that part of my life, and I joined a local choir. If the books inspire anyone else to start singing, I’ll be very pleased! 

~ Amy

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