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Welcome! My name is Haley, I'm a 27 year old book-aholic. I'm a book reviewer for the RiverTalk Newspaper. I love reading YA, NA, and adult paranormal mostly, but I do go into other genres on occasion. If you want to talk more one on one about books, please don't hesitate to contact me on facebook or twitter, I love making new bookish friends!

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Hey book beauties! Today we have an interview with the lovely and talented author Raine Thomas! You may know her for her very popular Daughters of Saraqael series! Today interview and excerpt is to celebrate the recent release of her first novel to a new series! Defy is the first book in the Firstborn series and was released on April 30th! 

Thanks so much for participating in the Defy launch tour, Haley! It’s a pleasure to be on the YA-Aholic blog once again, especially for this mini interrogation—er, interview. He he. *mops brow*
Okay, hit me!

Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Oh, sure!  This is a subject I know fairly well. Let’s see…I’m a wedding planner by day, author by night, and mom and wife 24/7. I’ve got degrees in English and humanities, and I absolutely love the written word. I’m often snarky and sarcastic and I’m an unshakable romantic. Because I grew up with three brothers, I love sports, action movies, fast cars, and cigars (I totally made that last one up, but it sounded good, didn’t it?). In part because I worked with challenged youth for eight years, my preferred genre to write is YA fiction. Thus far, my books are all YA fantasy/romance, and I look forward to expanding into other YA genres, as well.

If you could describe Defy in three words, what words would you use?
Intense. Vivid. Unique.

What makes your Firstborn series different than your Daughters of Saraqael series?
The Firstborn trilogy shifts the focus from the main characters in the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy to their offspring. Thus, there are new male and female protagonists in each book. Where the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy begins on the human plane and introduces the reader to the idea of the Estilorians in a gradual way, this trilogy starts right in the middle of the action, so to speak. The Firstborn trilogy is also a little “darker” in tone. There will be more conflict throughout the trilogy—and more evil villains—than in the first trilogy.

What inspired you to start the Firstborn series?
My readers! Within a week or two of publishing the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy, I received messages from fans asking when they could expect more stories about the Estilorians. I knew then that I couldn’t stop the series, and got to work outlining the Firstborn trilogy.

Tate sounds like a very strong character. Did anyone or anything inspire Tate’s personality?
You’re right…Tate certainly is strong, and she becomes even stronger in Defy by facing the challenges presented to her. In many ways, Defy is a coming-of-age story. Tate’s impulsive and, perhaps, “childish” actions in the beginning of the story shove her into a dangerous situation that makes her grow up fast. I think it would be fair to model that off my experience in becoming an indie author last July. I started out very green behind the ears, but events since then have definitely helped me learn!

What can your future and current readers expect from Defy?
I’ve read a number of early reviews of Defy, and one theme has carried through many of them: there’s every possibility that Defy is going to be unlike anything you’ve ever read—in a good way!

Thank you so much Raine for visiting us here at YA-Aholic! I cannot wait to get started on the Daughters of Saraqael series and then get to start on this new 'darker' series with Defy! :D



Purchase Defy: Amazon . Amazon UK . B&N

Seventeen-year-old Tate is about to make her parents’ dreams come true. Unfortunately for her, their dreams foretell her death.

Eager to explore more of the Estilorian plane and prove her abilities, Tate goes against her parents’ wishes and leaves the area of protection surrounding her home. Her choice puts her on a deadly path…one that leaves her alone, severely injured and battling for her life.

Her possible savior arrives in the form of Zachariah, a male who has removed himself from Estilorian society for more than fifty years. Fighting an unexpected connection to Tate, he must decide whether saving her life is worth destroying his.

As Tate struggles to find a way home, she ends up drawn into a dark Mercesti plot involving multiple murders and a powerful ancient artifact. With the unpredictable Zachariah as her only source for aid, she’ll soon find out if her abilities are strong enough to help her defy her Fate.

Excerpt from DEFY

She moved slowly, pausing often to regain her breath. She fought back the exhaustion that threatened to make her pass out again. Every time she moved forward, she checked all around her with her hands. Fear of finding bones, mutilated carcasses, insect nests, sleeping animals or other unsavory things had her heart beating uncomfortably fast. She heard the unsteadiness of every breath and tried her best to calm down. It did little good.

After a while, she struck a hard surface. Encouraged, she moved until her body was alongside the rock wall. Then she continued her slow progression, now following the hint of fresh air that reached her nose. It made her realize how bad it smelled in the cavern. It also prodded her to move a bit more quickly.

Finally, she sighted the cave opening. She realized that it was night outside, as the opening was only subtly lighter in color than the rock face around it. Now to the point of desperation, she used her elbows and her knees to help propel her even faster. When she reached the edge of the cave, however, she paused. It seemed recent events had finally taught her the value of caution. She carefully gauged what awaited her.

The forest outside the cave was alive with night noises. She heard the wind shifting through the trees. Animals rustled through the leaves on the ground. An owl let out a somber hoot. Not too far away, a wolf howled.

Tate was used to hearing the muted crash of the sea heaving against the cliffs. The forest near her home was never this empty-feeling, as there were always beings about and playful panthers lurking. All she had ever had to do was walk out her door to find someone to keep her company. Now, she listened to the relative peacefulness and shivered. There was no way she was still near home.

As fear once again overcame her curiosity, she fully comprehended how lost and alone she really was.


Raine Thomas said...

Many thanks for being a part of the DEFY launch tour, Haley! :)

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