Friday, September 7, 2018

Kendare Blake Author Interview

Photo Content from Kendare Blake

Kendare Blake is the author of several novels and short stories, most of which you can find information about via the links above. Her work is sort of dark, always violent, and features passages describing food from when she writes while hungry. She was born in July (for those of you doing book reports) in Seoul, South Korea, but doesn’t speak a lick of Korean, as she was packed off at a very early age to her adoptive parents in the United States. That might be just an excuse, though, as she is pretty bad at learning foreign languages. She enjoys the work of Milan Kundera, Caitlin R Kiernan, Bret Easton Ellis, Richard Linklater, and the late, great Michael Jackson, I mean, come on, he gave us Thriller.

She lives and writes in Kent, Washington, with her husband, their cat son Tyrion Cattister, red Doberman dog son Obi-Dog Kenobi, rottie mix dog daughter Agent Scully, and naked sphynx cat son Armpit McGee.


Series: Three Dark Crowns (Book 3)
Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen (September 4, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062686143
ISBN-13: 978-0062686145


“Tragic, devastating, horrifying, enthralling.” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


★ “Blake’s already pitch-dark tale shades even darker. Exquisitely restrained prose, deliberate pacing, paying off in a tumultuous climax that piles one shocking twist upon another. Achingly gorgeous and gruesomely fascinating.” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“This sequel to Three Dark Crowns loses none of that book’s momentum, powering toward a conclusion that leaves several doors open. With wonderfully drawn characters and a lethal, unpredictable plot, this follow-up will leave readers breathless as the queens’ fates unfold.” ―ALA Booklist


“New exciting heights with a driving plot. Dark indeed, and exploring themes of loyalty, this is a thrilling sequel with everything from action to romance to entice readers. A strong purchase for YA fantasy shelves.” ―School Library Journal

“Three Dark Crowns is a brutal and inventive fantasy that is as addictive as it is horrifying. I can’t begin to guess the fates of these three remarkable sister-queens, but I’m salivating like poisoners at a feast to find out what will happen next.” ―Marissa Meyer, New York Times bestselling author of the Lunar Chronicles

“Full of mystery, intrigue, and deadly girls I wouldn’t dare cross, Fennbirn is a darkly magical world I’m both drawn to and frightened by. In short, this is a book I could linger in for months, with three girls I am rooting for with all my heart.” ―Megan Shepherd, New York Times bestselling author of The Cage series

★ “With exquisite world building and luminous detail, this is high fantasy at its best. The magic is fierce and the plot intensely twisted, but at this novel’s dark heart beats a story about sisterhood, the unbreakable bonds of family, and ties that bind enough to kill.” Booklist (starred review)

★ “The opener to a pitch-black epic fantasy series. Blake has constructed an insular, matriarchal society from convincing intimate details, vivid, complicated characters, [and] sumptuous, poetic prose. Gorgeous and bloody, tender and violent, precise, and passionate; above all, completely addicting. ” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“I loved this book. Blake’s Three Dark Crowns is hypnotic, twisting, and satisfying as a drop of poison in an enemy’s cup.” ―April Genevieve Tucholke, author of Wink, Poppy, Midnight
“Readers will be riveted by Blake’s ingenious world-building, stunning developments of main and supporting characters, and spiraling tensions. Highly recommended for fans of fantasy action thrillers with strong female leads, such as Victoria Aveyard’s ‘Red Queen’ and Sarah J. Maas’s ‘Throne of Glass’ series.” ―School Library Journal

What was the single worst distraction that kept you from writing this book? 
Umm…nothing really. I wrote the first draft of Two Dark Reigns pretty quickly, but I made my deadline and then had several months to sit with it and realize EVERYTHING that was wrong.

Has reading a book ever changed your life? Which one and why, if yes? 
I think every book I read as a teenager changed my life somehow. Like, reading Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles made me super into old, museum-quality stuff. And reading Stephen King made me avoid trips to Maine.

What was the most surprising thing you learned in creating your Mirabella and Arsinoe? 
Mirabella surprised me by how much I grew to like her. At the start, she seemed to have it all, all this strength, all this support, all this beauty and adoration. But she became so much more than that. As for Arsinoe, I’m consistently surprised by how much trouble she can get herself into.

What was the most magical thing that happened while writing TWO DARK REIGNS
I think just the fact that I got to write it. I never thought I would get to know the rest of the story, what happened after the Ascension. So it was great to be able to see that, and also to go all the way back to the reign of the Blue Queen and see what was up on Fennbirn back then.

Which of your characters do you feel has grown the most since book one and in what way have they changed? 
Katharine and Jules, have changed the most. Kat went from being a quiet pawn, eager to please, to a young woman determined to make her own destiny. And Jules went from being Arsinoe’s protector, to being adrift and sort of without friends or purpose. Something she’s still figuring out now.

What part of Katharine did you enjoy writing the most? 
All of the poisoned food, to be honest. And every time she interacted with her snakes.

Which character have you enjoyed getting to know while writing THREE DARK CROWNS
I’ve really enjoyed getting to know the supporting cast. They surprised me in all sorts of ways, and I love that they are by turns good and bad, manipulative and caring, and it all varies based on perspective. It’s great to be able to see all of the sides of a character like Rho, the war-gifted priestess, for example. To some she’s brutal, to others, the most loyal soldier.

If you could be born into history as any famous person who would it be and why? 
Have you ever seen Midnight in Paris? Maybe any of those jazz age writers.

Scariest horror movie you have ever watched? Scariest?
That’s touch. I don’t scare easily. Some aspects of horror movies that have creeped me out: the entire concept of IT FOLLOWS, one shot in THE BABADOOK where the creature is glimpsed in a hanging coat, moments in THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE but not the ending, and I like the whole mythos of the Insidious movies.

What kind of socks are you wearing? 
No socks. Summer is 100% flip flops, dude. And frankly, my back is killing me from the lack of arch support.

What did you do for your last birthday? 
Went out to dinner? I was on the hunt for someplace that served roasted bone marrow. Alas, when we got there they had taken it off the menu.

What is your favorite restaurant in town and why? 
I just moved to a new city so it’s too early to say what my favorite is. We’re going out this weekend to try someplace that looks to have a great menu: duck and pork belly and lots of vegetable offerings. Burrata and roasted apricots. Also it’s connected to like, bowling and darts? So hopefully it’s good!

If you had to go back in time and change one thing, if you HAD to, even if you had “no regrets” what would it be? 
Like, just in my personal life? Or could I go back and stop the extinction of some species? It would be nice to be like a Quantum Leaper of animal wrongs. One day I jump into the body of a zoologist who can save an ailing hippo, another day I jump into the body of a neighbor who can save a dog from being left in a hot car. 

In no particular order (I REPEAT, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER)

1. Cas Lowood, the traveling ghost hunter from ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD. I love and miss Cas, and his sarcastic defense mechanisms, his love of Saskatoon jam. His unabashed love for his mom, and secret love for her cat.

2. Odysseus, the reincarnated Greek hero from the Goddess War trilogy. Me-ow, I miss Odysseus. He was probably the only one of my characters I can refer to as hot without hesitation. That accent. That rakish grin.

3. Billy Chatworth, Arsinoe’s suitor from the Three Dark Crowns series. Ah, Billy. He started out as a foil for the matriarchy, a guy who could serve as a patriarchal counterpoint. Instead he turned into the best suitor EVER and a fine rescuer of chickens.

4. Thomas Sabin, witch extraordinaire from ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD. Shy, sweet Thomas, who is actually as strong as a thunderstorm. He might have listened to too much Staind after his breakup with Carmel, but he’s absolutely the best friend a ghost hunter could ask for.

5. Pietyr Renard (or Pietyr Arron if you want to stay on his good side), a poisoner from the Three Dark Crowns series. Pietyr hides his heart of gold behind, well, a heart full of poison, I guess. He has his ambitions, but he adores his queen. And he’s so catty sometimes he makes me laugh.

#1 New York Times bestselling author Kendare Blake returns with the highly anticipated third book in the Three Dark Crowns series!

Katharine sits on the throne, Mirabella and Arsinoe are in hiding, and an unexpected renegade is about to wage a war of her own. The crown has been won, but these queens are far from done.

You can purchase Two Dark Reigns at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you KENDARE BLAKE for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of TWO DARK REIGNS by Kendare Blake..
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