Saturday, May 11, 2013

Series Spotlight & Author Interview with Mysti Parker (+GIVEAWAY)

Good morning, fellow readers! :) Today I have a series spotlight (the Tallenmere novels are a series of stand-alones) for you to check out, followed by an interview with the author, Mysti Parker!

I've also included a giveaway for you to enter at the end. :) First:

by Mysti Parker

A Ranger's Tale - In the fantasy world of Tallenmere, an elven noblewoman longed to leave her gilded cage. A half-breed former pirate wanted nothing more than to escape his guilty past. Easier said than done... 

High elf Caliphany Aranea leads an enviable life as King Leopold's niece and daughter of Sirius, Leogard's most famous wizard. Yet, being forced to follow in her father's footsteps and being betrothed to a man she doesn't even like makes her want a taste of life outside the city walls. 

As a young boy, half-elf Galadin Trudeaux witnessed his parents' death at the hands of pirates. After being raised by those same murderers and forced to do their bidding, he escaped and now lives an honest life as a sea merchant and ranger. 

When two brutes at Leogard Harbor attempt to kidnap Caliphany while she dreams of faraway lands, Galadin comes to her rescue. Impressed by his skills, she asks him to train her as a ranger. Though he is hesitant at first to train a woman of her class, Caliphany's hefty sack of gold finally persuades him. Unfortunately, her father is not amused, and the two must escape before Caliphany faces a forced marriage and Galadin faces a noose. 

From that moment on she and Galadin embark on an adventure of a lifetime. Only if they can survive the trials ahead, will they find a love that stands the test of time. 

Serenya's Song - No one ever said love was easy...

Serenya Crowe may be a half-elf commoner, but she's no ordinary woman. With the ability to interpret dreams, and a birth defect that forces her to wear gloves, she's endured gossip and the cruelty of her husband, Sebastian, The Earl of Summerwind. All she's ever wanted is to live a quiet life and raise a family. When she meets the new stranger in town, her world and her heart, are turned upside down. 

Wood-elf Jayden Ravenwing is an ex-secret agent who wants nothing more than to forget matters of the heart. He left the bustle of Leogard and his failed marriage to make a fresh start in Summerwind. He never planned to fall in love again, especially with the enchanting Serenya Crowe. 

When a strange portal opens on the Crowe property, Jayden is thrown into an investigation, knowing that if he fails, Serenya and everyone in the town may die. 

Together, he and Serenya must overcome an ancient evil, and their own inner demons, to save Summerwind and find the love they've always dreamed of.

Book 3, Hearts In Exile, will be released May 26!

Genre: Fantasy, Romance
Goodreads: Tallenmere series
Purchase A Ranger's Tale: Amazon / B&N / Smashwords / AllRomance
Purchase Serenya's Song: Amazon / B&N / Smashwords


with Mysti Parker

Do you have a specific writing style? 
It’s hard for me to judge my own style, but from the comments I’ve received over the years, it tends to be straightforward and verges on minimalist. Comparable to Hemingway in that aspect, I suppose. I definitely prefer being lean on detail, but high on the description. Does that make sense? I wouldn’t call myself literary, but I like to experiment with concise, powerful language.

Are there any messages or morals contained in your book(s)? 
Definitely. Throughout the series, I love to explore the themes of imperfect people who rise above their mistakes to emerge victorious on the other side. You won’t see any “Mary Jane” characters in my books! I also like to play up modern social themes in a fantasy setting, like broken families, corruption in government, and hypocrisy in religious institutions.

How do you react to a bad review?
I don’t, publically at least. I’ve learned from seeing other authors’ experiences that it’s best to NEVER engage a harsh critic. I’ve seen too many reactions turn to flame wars that only serve to make the author look unprofessional. Soon as we put our work out on the market, we have to be open to opinions from all angles. Not everyone will love what we write, and we have to accept that. What we as authors have to do is write for those who love our work and let the critics move on to something else.

Can you share a little of your current work with us? 
I’d love to. Here’s an excerpt from Chapter Seven of Hearts in Exile. Loralee, as daughter of the High Priestess, is tasked with helping young Igrorio (Sir Robert) heal from his near-death experience during the Plague. She’s got a tough job ahead of her…

A girl’s voice startled me from sleep. “Do you like dragons?”
My eyelids felt like they’d been weighed down with rocks. I brought my arm up to rub them, but even it felt strange and unused, like I had been poured into a new body. Finally, I cracked one eye open, then the other, and realized I had no idea where I was.
A blurry face framed with an over-abundance of red hair leaned over me. “I said, do you like dragons?”
“I don’t know,” I whispered. My voice sounded as dull and scratchy as a rusty old knife. “I’ve never thought much about them.”
“Hmm, well, since you’ll be here for a while, I thought you may want some books to peruse. Or do you like to paint or draw? I can get supplies-”
“Who are you?”
“Oh, how incredibly rude of me. I must apologize. I am Loralee. Loralee Munroviel.”
“The Priestess’s daughter?”
“That’s right. And you are?”
“Igrorio Everlyn.”
I blinked and got a better look at her exaggerated features. Her teeth were too big, the points of her ears nearly reached the top of her head, freckles dotted her round cheeks, and her eyes were like two giant green marbles. Even her smile whisked across her face like someone had painted it on in a hurry.
I scanned the room. It was fairly small with no windows, but squares of opaque glass in the ceiling let in filtered light. Green ivy clung to the bare wooden beams between the plastered walls, growing upward, where it wrapped around the rafters on the ceiling. It didn’t reach the glass, so someone must have kept it cleared away.
“Where am I?” I asked.
“You’re in the Temple, in a recovery room. Once you’ve built up your strength with some Blessed Water, nourishing food, and plenty of rest, you can-”
She bit her lip and stared down at the book on her lap.
“Go home?” I finished for her. A tight lump formed in my throat.
“I’m sorry,” she said, “I didn’t mean to-”
I flipped over to my other side and focused on the glossy, tri-pointed leaves beside my bed. Everything came back. Mama on the barge, Papa’s suicide, our home burning to ashes around me, and the girl who brought me back from the brink of death. I should have been grateful, that much I knew. But what did I have left? Everything beyond the here and now was too uncertain, too overwhelming. I should have died in that inferno.
“Leave me alone,” I whispered.
She said nothing, but her chair scraped against the stone floor. A moment later, the door clicked behind her, and I let my tears fall.

If there was a theme song for your book, what would it be?
Oh yes! I have playlists for every book, and every book has a theme song. For Hearts in Exile, I chose “Guardian” by Alanis Morissette. It works on a couple levels, with Loralee serving as Dragon Keeper, and Sir Robert determined to keep her safe.

Here’s the YouTube Video:


Chocolate or Vanilla? 

Shakespeare or Poe? 
Poe, definitely Poe…Once upon a midnight dreary…” so morbidly sweet.

Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings?
Lord of the Rings. Duh!

Favorite food?
Chocolate. Yes, chocolate IS a food group. Wanna fight about it?

Favorite animal?
Cat—I have three. They would mutiny if I said otherwise.

Favorite movie?
Easy—How to Train Your Dragon!

What is your guilty pleasure?
Red wine and dark chocolate.

What do you do in your free time?
Not that I have much free time, but I love to unwind by playing Skyrim. If you haven’t heard of this fantastic roleplaying video game, then by all means, find it! You’ll be hooked!

What one thing are you most proud of in your life?
My kids, beyond any doubt. They are the light of my life and I’m so proud of each one of them.


Mysti Parker (pseudonym) is a full time wife, mother of three, and a writer. Her first novel, A Ranger's Tale was published in January, 2011 by Melange Books, and the second in the fantasy romance series, Serenya's Song, was published in April 2012. The highly anticipated third book, Hearts in Exile, has already received some great reviews. The Tallenmere series has been likened to Terry Goodkind's 'Sword of Truth' series, but is probably closer to a spicy cross between Tolkien and Mercedes Lackey.

Mysti's other writings have appeared in the anthologies Hearts of Tomorrow, Christmas Lites, and Christmas Lites II. Her flash fiction has appeared on the online magazine EveryDayFiction. She has also served as a class mentor in Writers Village University's six week free course, F2K.

Mysti reviews books for SQ Magazine, an online specfic publication, and is the proud owner of Unwritten, a blog voted #3 for eCollegeFinder's Top Writing Blogs award. She resides in Buckner, KY with her husband and three children.

You can find Mysti here:


Thank you so much, Mysti, for being a guest on my blog today! You are made of awesome, seriously. ^-^

Readers, continue on for an Amazon Gift Card giveaway!  Make sure to add the Tallenmere novels to your Goodreads shelf! :D 



*This giveaway is for one $15 Amazon Gift Card
*Open to anyone who can legally use an Amazon GC
*Ends 05/20/13
*To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below!

Good luck & thanks for stopping by! Happy Reading!


Mysti said...

Thanks so much for letting me invade your blog!! ~Mysti

Eli Yanti said...

interesting, i would love to read book from this series :)

Unknown said...

The book series sounds interesting! I normally don't add books to my Goodreads unless I REALLY do intend to read them -- this is the case here. The separate world, the potential connections between each book -- and besides, who doesn't like a good pirate? :)

Mysti said...

Thanks for stopping in, Eli! I hope you check out the series!

Mysti said...

Thanks for stopping in, Anna! Galadin is definitely a pirate that any woman can fall in love with ;) Thanks for adding the books to your list, too!

nurmawati djuhawan said...

already adding on my TBR list..thx u so much ;)

paula said...

Ihese books looks cool. Can't wait to read them

Kristia said...

Already added them to my tbr list. I have to admit that the covers could be better but I've learnt long ago not to judge a book by its cover. They sound really interesting!

Janhvi said...

Thanks for the excerpt and author interview! I totally agree that chocolate is a food group :D

Mysti said...

Thanks for stopping in and adding the books, Nurmawati! Hope you enjoy them. :)

Mysti said...

Thanks for stopping by, Kristall! Hope you enjoy the series as much as I enjoyed writing them.

Mysti said...

Hi Kristia! These are actually newly redesigned covers, and I'm very happy with them. If you could have seen the originals, you'd know why :)

Hope you get a chance to read them. Thanks for stopping by!

Mysti said...

Amen!! Chocolate will be on the menu at some point today. It IS Mother's Day, after all, and this mama loves chocolate :)

Thanks for stopping in, Janhvi!

Unknown said...

the 1st cover looks so great! :)

laurie said...

already adding on my TBR list..thx u so much ;)

Mysti said...

Thanks, Claire! The model for Caliphany is Anastasia King, an artist/designer/model from North Carolina. She's even illustrating a children's book for me. I'm so happy I found her :)

Thanks Laurie!! I hope you enjoy this series. Book Four will hopefully be out next year :)

Meghan said...

Wow! I can't WAIT to read this! I love that cover, too ; )
I wonder what kind of events or people inspired the author while writing this book!?
Thanks for the giveaway!
mestith at gmail dot com

Mysti said...

Thanks Meghan! As far as inspiration--Orlando Bloom as Legolas. Nuff said. :)

alena said...

i would love to read book from this series,very interesting!

Mysti said...

Thanks for stopping in, Alena! I hope you read and enjoy them :)

Christine said...

I'm a big fantasy fan and the descriptions sound right up my alley, so I'll definitely be putting this series on my TBR list, yes! :D

Mysti said...

Thanks Christine!! I hope you get a chance to read them. Book Three is SOOO close to being born :)

Fear Street said...

These definitely look interesting. Thanks for the chance to win :)

-Amber Terry-

Mysti said...

Thanks for stopping by, Amber!

Unknown said...

I love the cover on the left, she looks beautiful yet tough at the same time. I just added it to my TBR list

magic5905 said...

Books sound really good. Thanks for the excerpt. I will be adding book one to my list.

Mysti said...

Thank you Shannon! She did a wonderful photoshoot for me. :)

Mysti said...

Thank you magic! I hope you'll enjoy the series. By several accounts, readers have loved Serenya's Song even more than A Ranger's Tale. It'll be interesting to see what the consensus is on Hearts in Exile.

Unknown said...

I love the cover of the books. I also enjoyed the interview and I will definitely be adding these to my TBR list.

Mysti said...

Thank you, Tina! I hope you get a chance to read the series and will enjoy the books. Hearts in Exile is coming June 3 :)

Unknown said...

I read Serenya's Song last summer and really enjoyed it! I did not read the first book though but I know I will like that one too :)
Thanks for the giveaway.

Unknown said...

I quite like the covers of these. Simplistic but nice.

Mysti said...

Hey Marissa!! I loved your review, so I hope you get a chance to read the 1st and 3rd books :) Thanks so much for stopping in!!

Mysti said...

Thank you, Holly!! I love the consistency of the covers that show they're linked in a series. Much better than the originals. Thanks for stopping in :)

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