I am such a fan of Rae Carson's series, I hardly know how to type without gushing fangirlisms all over the page. I had Rae on the blog last year to celebrate her debut THE GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS, and I'm thrilled to welcome her back for the sequel, THE CROWN OF EMBERS. If you haven't had a chance to try this epic fantasy series, I think you should drop every other book you planned on reading and grab these instead. Seriously. These stories are fully realized tales with nuanced characters, epic stakes, and an incredible world. There's also swords and kissing, so there you go.
Let's take a look at THE CROWN OF EMBERS.
She does not know what awaits her at the enemy's gate.
Elisa is a hero. She led her people to victory over a terrifying, sorcerous army. Her place as the country's ruler should be secure. But it isn't.
Her enemies come at her like ghosts in a dream, from both foreign realms and within her own court. And her destiny as the chosen one has not yet been fulfilled.
To conquer the power she bears once and for all, Elisa must follow the trail of long-forgotten--and forbidden--clues from the deep, undiscovered catacombs of her own city to the treacherous seas. With her goes a one-eyed spy, a traitor, and the man who--despite everything--she is falling in love with.
If she's lucky, she will return from this journey. But there will be a cost.
Rae chose to be interviewed by Giselle, our resident pink sock monkey. Let's meet today's guests and get into the interview!
1. I believe a girl should be able to describe herself in a single word. Naturally, the word I’d use for myself is “perfect.” What word best describes you?
Sock-lover. (The hyphen totally makes it one word.)
2. On the one hand, I don't understand a fascination for socks when shoes with six inch heels exist. On the other hand, I appreciate that you look at me and see my true beauty. Though it would be nice if you understood the not-so-subtle difference between my incredible gorgeousness and all the other drab, ordinary, non-pink-sock-monkey socks in the world. A common misconception about sock monkeys is that we adore socks. This is foolishness. Speaking only for myself, I adore Jimmy Choos and diamonds from Tiffany’s. What are a few of your favorite things?
Coffee, kitties, books, and warm socks on my feet.
3. If you ever try to put me on your feet, I'll bite off your toes. Many crave my approval, but few are clever enough to win it. What are you willing to do to win my favor?
I will flatter you outrageously and coax you closer and closer until you are on my feet where you belong. I understand that I would have to take you apart a little to accomplish this, but the sacrifice is worth it, don't you think?
4. Outrageous! Blasphemy! Sacrilege! You'd better step carefully. The heels on my Jimmy Choos are useful for more than just keeping me on my feet. If I was a dessert, I’d be a French macaron. Strawberry, of course. Why? Because I am French and pink and altogether lovely. What kind of dessert best describes you and why?
I would be tiramisu, because it is full of interesting layers. Also, I just like to say "tiramisu."
5. If you try to disassemble me, I'll turn you into a bowl full of interesting layers. I understand you write stories. Please tell me why the hero of your book would be my perfect boy toy for a day.
Hector is warm, loyal, and hardworking. Also, completely hot. It might take some convincing to get him to hang out with you though, even though you are the most beautiful sock monkey I've ever seen. He doesn't date just anybody.
6. Who said anything about date? I simply wish to be amused for a few hours. And perhaps treated to a seven course meal and a new wardrobe. You Americans love your movies. One day, when Hollywood tells the story of my life, it will be called Gone With The Perfect Pink Monkey. If your life was a movie, what would be the title?
Everyone who knows me knows that I am passionate about my footwear, especially in the cooler seasons. So my movie title would be: The Warm Sock Monkeys of Autumn.
7. Starring moi, of course. Pink? Or some lesser, inferior color?
I do love pink. Especially for my socks.
8. Back off, you loquacious biped, or you'll have the business end of a Jimmy Choo buried in your left eye socket. I love fairy tales. If I was a fairy tale character, I’d be Snow White. The fairest in all the land. Which fairy tale character would you be and why?
I would be Ursula from the Disney version of The Little Mermaid. It's obvious that she has a healthy appetite like mine. Also, the ability to wear a lot of socks at once.
9. I hope you do become Ursula. I do appreciate a lovely squid saute. I am, of course, a fashion trend setter. (Glitter eye shadow? Six inch heels? Retro gowns making a comeback? Yes. You may thank me with your undying adulation.) If you were to start a trend, what would it be?
I would bring back the hair scrunchie, which was one of mankind's greatest achievements. It deserves an epic comeback.
10. *shudders delicately* Not while I'm alive. I am addicted to all things French—baguettes, macarons, Chateau Lafite, moi … the list goes on and on. What is your favorite thing from France?
The Statue of Liberty.
11. Well, I suppose I can't fault that answer, but to pass up baguettes and macarons and the Eiffel Tower for a statue is as incomprehensible as wanting hair scrunchies to return. A smart woman always maintains an air of mystery. Often the art of being mysterious involves doing the unexpected. What is the most unusual thing you’ve ever done?
I quit a high paying job and lived off savings while I finished writing the book that eventually became The Girl of Fire and Thorns. My family thought I was CrAzY. They were probably right.
12. I've only known you for five minutes, and I can assure you they were right. Hair scrunchies? REALLY? What's next? Banana Clips? I also believe a smart woman always gets the last word. Any last word you’d like to leave with my readers?
Support the economy. Buy more socks.
Thank you, Rae, for such an entertaining interview! It takes an impressive woman to get the best of Giselle. To learn more about Rae, visit her site. To grab your own copy of THE CROWN OF EMBERS, head to Indie Bound, Amazon, or Barnes & Noble. The fun isn't over yet! Rae is giving away a paperback copy of GIRL OF FIRE & THORNS and a hardback of THE CROWN OF EMBERS, both signed and personalized! The contest is open to North America and you can enter until midnight EST October 15th. Good luck and happy reading!
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