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Wednesday 8 February 2017

ℚ Guardian of Secrets: Library Jumpers [2] - Brenda Drake

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about Guardian of Secrets (7 February 2017, Entangled: Teen, 400 pages), a Young Adult Fantasy, book two of the Library Jumpers series.

5 stars: "Guardian of Secrets was filled to the brim with magic and fun! This is the second book in the series,and I was easily transported back into their world right from the start. The pages were filled with friendship, laughter, tears, betrayal, love and trust. And I happily found myself addicted, since the characters continually pulled at my emotions." -Jen, Starcrossed Book Blog

4.5 stars: "Guardian of Secrets is the 2nd book in Brenda Drake's imaginative Library Jumpers series, and retains all the originality, magic, thrills, action, romance, and of course library jumping, of its predecessor, Thief of Lies. [...] Overall, this is sure to appeal to fans of YA urban fantasy and paranormal romance, particularly ones who enjoy stories featuring books and libraries. It's left me eagerly anticipating the next book!"-Kim, By Hook Or By Book

|| Synopsis || Teaser: KCR Preview || The Series || Author Q&A || About the Author || Giveaway & Tour Stops ||

A very warm welcome to Brenda Drake; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter!

What was the inspiration for Guardian of Secrets?

"GUARDIAN OF SECRETS is book two in the Library Jumpers series. The inspiration for the story came from a coffee table book on the most beautiful libraries in the world. As I scanned the photographs, I wanted to jump into the pages and visit each one, which sparked the idea for Library Jumpers. I imagined battles with knights and creatures fighting among the bookcases. I bought the book, hurried home, and started plotting the first book in the series."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"I think there is a sprinkling of myself in the book. Gia is a combination of my nieces and me. Gia’s roots are Irish and Italian and another main character is French, which make up who I am. Someone in my life inspired each character. My love of books and libraries is captured in the story. I borrow from people, events, places I’ve experienced in my life, and then mix it up."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for Guardian of Secrets - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"Entangled publishing came up with the covers for both Thief of Lies and Guardian of Secrets. From the model, the colors, and the bookcases in the background, they really nailed my vision for the cover. They’re beautiful and I love them."
Why should we read Guardian of Secrets and the Library Jumpers series; what sets it apart from the rest?
"I would hope readers would want to read it for the unique theme of jumping through gateway books to travel to the many beautiful libraries in the world. I personally connect to the characters and their relationships. Gia is fiercely loyal to her friends and family. She’s a teen facing scary situations, but she pushes through those fears for those she loves. I’m obviously bias, but it’s the series of my heart. "
Can you tell us something quirky about Guardian of Secrets, its story and characters?
"Nick, Gia’s best friend, is modeled after my son. His quirky and sarcastic personality is just like my son’s personality. I want to scold Nick and send him to his room every time he says something inappropriate."
Who would you recommend Guardian of Secrets to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"GUARDIAN OF SECRETS and the Library Jumpers series doesn’t have the real bad swear words or sex, and the violence isn’t too graphic, so I would recommend it to middle grade, young adult, and the young at heart readers who love fantasy with a dash of romance."
What has been your greatest challenge as a writer?
"Staying focus. Life can get busy and hectic and grabbing time to write is a challenge. I have to stick to a schedule or I’ll waste an entire day doing small, unimportant things."
What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?
"All criticism can be a tough pill to swallow. Over time, I’ve learn to accept that not everyone will love my work, some will loath it, just as I don’t enjoy every book I read. I write for those who enjoy my stories. The best compliment, was signing at a book fair in Paris. The readers were excited and, though we didn’t speak the same language, connecting to many wonderful readers has touched me and encouraged me to keep working on my craft and turning out the best books I can."
What is your writing process?
"Before I start a story, I do short character bios and setting research. Next, I do a four-act plot graph. It’s skeletal and I only use it as a road map for the story. Then I write, letting the characters and inspiration lead me on that road, fleshing out the story as I go. Sometimes, I go off-road and take a detour, but the direction I’m going usually stays the same. I have a writing partner, Pintip Dunn (author of the New York Times bestseller, FORGET TOMORROW). We keep each other motivate and help each other through plot issues and other writerly things. We word sprint together, where we write non-stop for a set amount of time and tally how many words we get in during the sprint. It gets us out of our slumps. And then, I revise."
What is in store next?
"GUARDIAN OF SECRETS is the second book in the Library Jumpers series. I’m currently writing book three, ASSASSIN OF TRUTHS, which comes out the beginning of 2018. The final book finds Gia in many difficult situations, there are many battles, we visit more of the Mystik world, jump to more libraries, and Gia will have to go up against someone she loves."
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"Along with two cats, we have a pet ferret, Momo. He’s such a loving little guy and so much fun. He runs around the house, chases my feet, and drinks a few drops of coffee each day, thanks to my husband who spoils him. It’s hard to get a picture together with him, he’s a squirmy little guy, but I’ve attached one of him taking a bath. I hope that’s not ferret-porn or something."

Love the two pussycats :-) And I cannot wait to see Momo! (the pic hasn't come through yet!)
UPDATE: And here is Momo! And he is super-mega-cute!

"Thank you so much for having on your blog!"

Guardian of Secrets
Available NOW!

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