Leslie will be awarding a $25 Amazon gift card to TWO randomly drawn commenters during the tour. Follow tour by clicking on tour banner.
by Leslie D. Soule
What happens when Ash accidentally makes her way through another portal, this time into the Other Realm, and forgets she ever went to Fallenwood? More importantly, how much of one's identity is made up of memories? Fallenwood 2 is the continuing journey of heroine Ash Kensington. Struggling with a deep sense of grief, sorrow, and overall confusion, Ash tries to work her way through to a deeper, underlying meaning. This search leads her back to Fallenwood, where the mystery unravels itself as she realizes that a very sinister force may be underlying everything…
Ashley woke in a cold sweat. She remembered nothing of her time spent in the magical realm known as Fallenwood. Without the remembrance of her journey in Fallenwood, Ashley awoke as her former self, without the benefit of the lessons learned during her journey. That journey never existed, and her memory bank filled itself with everything she’d known before she left. Ashley began living a normal life, as though Fallenwood didn’t exist at all. Now, visions slipped away into nothingness and she believed she’d only had a series of incredibly vivid dreams and nothing more.
Yet the heart keeps a remembrance of its own, and without Prince Edward, a cold loneliness sank to the core of Ashley’s heart. Her mind couldn’t define the source of her heartache, so she blindly sought its cure.
Tell us about yourself:
Well, I’m a Sacramento-based author who’s never really considered herself a “city girl”. I much prefer the woods and areas like Crescent City, where my dad’s side of the family’s from. That’s one of the reasons why I like to write fantasy so much – the woods offer a setting that is traditionally fantasy-based. I love doing art – painting, drawing, ceramics, putting together assemblages, etc. I also love the martial arts and have trained in a few different styles. I’m an introvert, so I tend to keep to myself and my books and tea and cozy things and whatnot.
What was your first book?
The first book I wrote was a book called Fallenwood, that was released as an ebook. It’s the beginning of my Fallenwood Chronicles, and surprisingly enough, I originally conceived it as a stand-alone, with no sequels of any kind to follow, but as so often happens to writers, the characters sometimes take over and take the story to unexpected places. We writers have no choice but to try and follow as best we can, clutching our pens and notebooks.
Describe your first break.
I started writing when I was very young and continued on through my teens and young adulthood, submitting pieces to every venue I could get an address to, and to no avail. I’d even started keeping a notebook where I’d tape all of my many many rejection letters. Then one day, I got a letter from a small literary magazine called The Armchair Aesthete, saying they’d accepted a poem of mine called “The Second Dante”. I feel like that was really my first break, and made me feel like I could make it as an author and have my work accepted.
What is your favorite genre to read? To write?
My favorite genre to read is fantasy, but followed closely by steampunk. I love that steampunk combines two favorites of mine – Victorian literature and science fiction. It’s like peanut butter and jelly – how did we ever live without steampunk?
As for writing, I’ve always had a love for fantasy and the hope that it represents – that there is magic and salvation in the “greenwood”.
What makes a protagonist interesting?
I think what makes a protagonist interesting is seeing how they grow as a character, and how their struggles change them. Also, Faulkner once famously wrote that “the only thing worth writing about is the human heart in conflict with itself” and I definitely agree. It’s interesting to see a protagonist at those agonizing moments when they are conflicted and have to make a choice.
What is the best thing about being a writer?
I feel like the best thing about being a writer is the sense of freedom you achieve with it – that you can say anything you want to, even if it’s politically incorrect or it’s not something that’s typically discussed. Freedom of expression is what being a writer is all about. I feel like writers have always challenged the social norms, and that’s a good thing.
What is the worst thing?
The worst thing is that writing can be very difficult, and taxing, emotionally and mentally – and once you’ve put a lot of effort into something, it may not even be well-received by your audience.
Pantser or plotter?
I try to plot as much as possible, generally, and at least to have the ending worked out before I really get into a story.
What do you see the direction of your future writing taking? What can we expect next? Give us a little taste.
Well, the original Fallenwood is going to be re-released at some point, and I’m working with a critiquing partner on book three of the quadrilogy. Book 3 is called Betrayer. I also have a sci-fi novel I’m working on editing, about human-animal hybrids, called Hybrid Space.
Just for fun
Cat or dog person?
You know, I have this crazy, adorable dog named Ginger, but I’ve always thought of myself as more of a cat person. Ginger hates cats though, so I can’t have those. L
Sushi! I LOVE LOVE LOVE sushi!!!
The Two Towers, by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Last Dragon – it’s a martial arts classic.
Favorite vacation destination (you just have to want to go there)
I’d love to go to Ireland – home of my ancestors.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Leslie D. Soule is an author who loves to try new genres and Sacramento, California is her hometown. She has an M.A. in English from National University and is a member of the English Chapter of the Sac State Almuni Association. She is currently working on her fantasy quadrilogy, The Fallenwood Chronicles.
Website link: www.lesliesoule.com
Melange Books: http://www.melange-books.com/authors/lesliedsoule/ForgettingFallenwood.html
Forgetting Fallenwood blew me away in several ways. Let me first explain that I am a book reviewer on purpose, as job as opposed to a random review here and there. By this time, I’ve read almost 6,000 books over the span of thirty years.
I enjoyed the quiet elegance and interwoven construction of the plot. The concept of forgetting who you once were was intriguing. It hints at alternative universes and reincarnation. What if you were once magical? Not Disney Princess magic, but misty morning Fae magic? There would have to be a powerful reason why you’d forget.
Reading Forgetting Fallenwood was such an unadulterated pleasure. The contrast between her old life and new life was striking. The creation of suspense, doubt, and anticipation created a heady combination that kept me turning pages. I appreciate a writer who considers the placement of each word, the construction of each setting, and the hidden motives of each character. Bravo, Ms. Soule, you have achieved much with Forgetting Fallenwood. I can’t wait to read the entire series.