Sunday, January 25, 2015

*Blitz & Giveaway*
"Isla’s Oath" by Cassandra Page!!

Isla’s Oath
(Isla’s Inheritance #2)

~By: Cassandra Page

~Published: January 20th, 2015

~Publisher: Turquoise Morning Press

~Length: 225 Pages

~Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult

Australia is a long way from the Old World and its fae denizens … but not far enough.

Isla is determined to understand her heritage and control her new abilities, but concealing them from those close to her proves difficult. Convincing the local fae she isn’t a threat despite her mixed blood is harder still. When the dazzling Everest arrives with a retinue of servants, Isla gets her first glimpse of why her mother’s people are hated … and feared.

But Isla isn’t the only one with something to hide. Someone she trusts is concealing a dangerous secret. She must seek the truth and stop Everest from killing to get what he wants: Isla’s oath.

Cassandra Page is a mother, author, editor and geek. She lives in Canberra, Australia’s bush capital, with her son and two Cairn Terriers. She has a serious coffee addiction and a tattoo of a cat—despite being allergic to cats. She has loved to read since primary school, when the library was her refuge, and loves many genres—although urban fantasy is her favourite. When she’s not reading or writing, she engages in geekery, from Doctor Who to AD&D. Because who said you need to grow up?

~ Connect with Cassandra Online ~

Jack led me to one side of the walkway, against the window of a bank. After looking around to make sure we weren’t being watched, he reached into his messenger bag and pulled something out to show me.

Cupped in his hand was a creature the size of a large mouse. It—no, he—was dressed in ragged, miniature clothes; his hair was a tangled mass of gold and his eyes were little blue flecks of summer sky. On his back, a pair of diaphanous wings like a dragonfly’s beat slowly, only visible because of the tracery of veins. Around his neck, strung on a piece of cotton, was a glossy pink bead.

The creature resembled Tinkerbell, if she were down on her luck and had grown sharp around the edges. A fairy made from mosquitos rather than butterflies.

“Isla, this is Welkin. He is a piskie.”

“Uh. Hi!” I said brightly, trying to pretend I’d heard of a piskie before now.

“Hello,” Welkin piped. Jack held his hand up so that the tiny fairy was at eye level with me. Welkin bobbed his head in gratitude.

“Please tell Isla what you told me,” the hob said.

He looked me up and down, a gesture that only took in my face. He pursed his lips, eyes narrowed. “Okay,” he said after a moment, putting his hands on his hips. The gesture was adorable but also reminded me of my year seven science teacher. “Do you know about energy flows?”

“Pretend I don’t.”

He craned his neck to frown at Jack before looking back at me. 

“Right. Every living thing in the world sheds energy. It’s a lot like air. Sometimes it pools, still, and sometimes it flows and you get a breeze or a storm.”

“Like water?”

Welkin scowled. “Like air. This is my metaphor, lady.”

I bit my lip so I didn’t laugh, nodding to indicate he should continue.

“Well, some aosidhe are like mountains. The air bends around them and continues on, but becomes more turbulent. And if there are a bunch of them together you can get wind tunnels and it gets really tricky to fly…” He trailed off, staring distractedly through Jack’s fingers at a passing couple, absorbed in their conversation.

“And other aosidhe?” I reminded him gently.

“Oh, yes. Other aosidhe are more like cyclones, throwing everything around and making a mess.” He sniffed in disapproval.

I wondered which type I was, but decided not to ask. “So you can sense the presence of aosidhe based on this energy movement.”

“Yes. There was one here—” he narrowed his eyes at me “—and now there are two.”

“When did the other one arrive?”


With Cassandra Page, author of Isla’s Oath

Isla's Oath is the second book in the Isla's Inheritance trilogy. Tell us a bit about the first book.

The series is a young adult urban fantasy set in Australia. Isla’s Inheritance follows Isla’s journey as she discovers that her father has been keeping secrets from her. She thought her mother died during childbirth, but during the course of the book she learns there’s a lot more to it than that. Her mother is fae, one of the ruling class called the aosidhe, and is very much alive—Isla’s father fled to Australia with Isla when she was a baby to get them both away from his angry bride. 

Unfortunately, when Isla turns eighteen and becomes an adult, her half-fae heritage starts to manifest and it draws all sorts of unwanted attention. 

What can we expect from Isla's Oath?

In short: kissing, self-discovery, a sexy bad guy, and some running. (Love the running!)

The fae, or duinesidhe, in Australia are almost all refugees of one kind or another: “lesser” fae who want to live free of aosidhe oppression. Members of the fae ruling class are renowned for their cruelty. Needless to say, the duinesidhe wild about discovering a half-aosidhe in their midst, as they’re concerned not only that she might try to enslave them but about what she might draw down on them, however inadvertently.  

While trying to navigate that side of her life, Isla is also trying to navigate a new relationship with Dominic. He’s suspicious of her friendship with Jack, her duinesidhe friend—largely because Dominic doesn’t know anything about that side of her life.

And then Everest, a full-blooded aosidhe, turns up and things get really interesting.

Reviewers of Isla's Inheritance have commented on Isla’s close-knit family. Tell us about them.

Isla lives with her aunt and two cousins in the city, because her father’s farm is far enough out of town that it was difficult for her to get to school each day. Sarah, the younger of her cousins, is almost the same age as her and is her best friend. Isla still lives with them now she’s graduated, while she’s trying to find work and is learning about her fae heritage. And despite her mixed feelings about the things her dad kept hidden from her for so long, she is still very close to him in Isla’s Oath

I love to see strong families in YA. So often the parents are absent, neglectful or the bad guys! Isla’s biological mother certainly qualifies in some or all of those categories, but her aunt is something of a surrogate mother, treating Isla the same way she does her own children. And while the rest of her family isn’t all sunshine and roses—she argues with her cousins and doesn’t get on with her grandmother at all—Isla knows they are there for her and that she can rely on them when she needs to.

Where did the idea for Isla’s Inheritance come from?

It was a combination of a few ideas, but the main one was a story idea I had for a psychic vampire—the sort of undead critter that feeds off emotions rather than blood, and can leave people a burnt-out husk. But by then Twilight had already hit the big time and everyone’s interest in vampires was waning. I decided to take the basic idea of an empath who can absorb emotions and turn it into something different. Thus Isla was born.

What sort of research did you do while planning the series?

I did a lot of reading about mythological creatures—mostly European ones like the various fae races—but also some from further afield. 
One thing I found really interesting during my research was seeing the echoes of those myths in other authors’ books. For example, I’d bet that J. K. Rowling’s Dementors were inspired by the myths of the sluagh, with a touch of Grim Reaper in their look. Her house elves are very much like the English myth of the hob. (I also have hobs in my series, but I made them quite different, partly because I love Dobby and didn’t want to tread on his toes. I’m glad I did, though, as I’m a big fan of Jack, my leading hob!)

When should we expect the third book to hit the selves? And does it have a title yet?

It’s called Melpomene’s Daughter, and it’s scheduled for release in April this year. So excite!

How do you pronounce aosidhe again?

Ae-oh-shee (the “Ae” is the same as the a in baby). 

Duinesidhe is pronounced din-a-shee. Sidhe is the word for the faerie mounds. The aosidhe are the rulers of the mounds, and the duinesidhe are the people of the mounds.

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