Posts Tagged ‘adventure’
Robert spent his formative years living in Canada, but now resides near his birthplace of Lancaster, England. “Trance Warriors” came into being some six years before this book was published, in the form of a two-page premise drafted in the midst of writing a completely different novel, and grew into what you see now. Self-taught, Robert is currently busy writing the sequels to “The Siege of Scarn.” When he is not busy writing he enjoys walking in the Yorkshire Dales and Lakeland Fells.
Tyler: Welcome, Robert. I’m excited to talk to you about your newnovel. To begin, will you tell us a little bit about the world that you’ve created?
Robert: Hi Tyler, nice to meet you. The fantasy world I’ve created? Well, as a world it is un-named, at least for the present, though it has several similarities to our own world. In this book I have introduced The Grynn Kingdom on Middle Isle and the Horan Empire on the southern continent. This world is peopled by different races from our world and from pure fantasy. Traditional fantasy figures, like dwarves and elves, hopefully with a few new, unique traits, as well as races from our earth’s history. These races although perhaps not named as they were in their time, are hopefully recognisable by the reader. The land itself has been shaped by cataclysmic events that become clear as the story unfolds.
Tyler: Tell us about Connor, the main character. What makes him tick, and why is he attractive to readers?
Robert: Connor is one of the Trance Warriors of the title, although ignorant of his heritage to start with. He is brave, a consummate warrior, handsome, and, for the most part, honorable. His true lineage is hidden from him and, initially, he is not much more than an outlaw, admittedly, one with an unusual power he understands little about.
Tyler: Will you tell us what that power is, or at least what makes Connor realize he has a power, or will that be giving away the plot?
Robert: Connor is a Trance Warrior, which gives him the ability to enter the trance and kill thousands of enemies in what we would perceive as the blinking of an eye. But his ability is tempered by his lack of knowledge of his skill initially, and this ignorance has the potential to kill him.
Tyler: One of the reviews on your website refers to Connor as an anti-hero? Do you see him as an anti-hero, or is he truly heroic?
Robert: I enjoy getting reviews, both good and not so good, as it’s always interesting to see how other people see your work. The review you refer to placed Trance Warriors firmly in the ‘Conan’ mold, and Connor as a Conan-like anti-hero. I’d, at least in this first book, call Connor a reluctant hero, rather than an anti-hero.
Tyler: Robert, after Connor, who is your favorite character in the book and why?
Robert: Janice would fill that description. She is Connor’s woman. Headstrong and, at times recklessly brave, she struggles and succeeds in a man’s world. She is more than she seems and has a major role to play in the coming sequels.
Tyler: What is a Trance Warrior? Why does Connor want to be a Trance Warrior?
Robert: Your own reviewer has described it best so far. Trancing is the ability of a man to ‘warp time’ and thus gain an immense advantage on the battle field. There are many problems for these warriors, because when in the trance, they ‘walk with the gods,’ as it is described in ‘The Siege of Scarn’ at one point. And since they are not gods many limitations and problems arise for them. Much more about trancing is explained and revealed in the second book.
Tyler: Would you explain what you mean about warping time? How is that an advantage on the battlefield?
Robert: As I mentioned in an earlier answer, Tyler, Connor can enter the trance and, to him, it seems as if everything becomes still, while he still moves, and thus he is able to destroy enemies by the hundreds and thousands if he chooses. But this power is dangerous to him and anathema to his honor code. In the second book much more detail is added to the explanation of this power.
Tyler: Connor is fighting against a hidden evil. Will you explain how he is aware of the evil and how it is detrimental to his world?
Robert: Connor becomes aware of the evil as the story unfolds, meeting new friends and gaining valuable insights from them. Without giving too much away, Connor knows that if the evil gains dominion of his world then everyone will die, or worse become a part of the evil.
Tyler: Will you tell us a little bit about the history of Connor’s world and its gods? Why are these important to Connor’s mission?
Robert: Connor’s world is built around thebetween the twin brother gods, Scarn and Scarl, whose eternal battle has all but destroyed several races and left large parts of the lands under the sway of the evil Kaitomi, of whom you can read more in the book. Connor’s role revolves around his connection to the twin gods, and his actions will ultimately decide the outcome of the battle between the brothers.
Tyler: Robert, gods and twins are common in myths. Would you say there is a specific world mythology that specifically influenced you, and if so, how did it influence your creation of a fantasy world?
Robert: I think the first book was an amalgam of ideas gleaned from many hundreds of fantasy stories and several original ideas that shaped it. As the second book took shape several very specific mythological and historical ideas wove themselves into my story, namely Norse mythology, medieval styles, vampire like evil, slavery and a few others. As for the twins concept, it was a convenient and a good avenue to explain the evil and to separate the good from the evil.
Tyler: Robert, you’ve lived in North America and in England. Does the history of England, which includes the medieval period, influence your writing? Do you think your location has been an advantage to your writing that someone living in the United States, for example, might not have?
Robert: Since most of the book is very firmly ‘fantasy,’ I think it matters little where I am located. Incidentally, I was very pleased by the Reader Views review as the reviewer picked up on the fact that the ‘Scarn warriors’ are loosely based on the Native American Indians. Several historical periods and peoples are featured in the books; their presence in Connor’s world is explained as the story unfolds.
Tyler: Connor has his own personal demons. What are those demons and how do they motivate his actions?
Robert: Most of Connor’s ‘demons’ are to do with the devastating loss of his perceived family and the subsequent revelations about his true heritage. Too, he has great doubts about his own abilities and, sometimes, abhorrence when faced with some of the tasks he is set.
Tyler: Robert, what do you feel makes your fantasy world stand out among all the other fantasy worlds that have been created?
Robert: While most ‘fantasy’ novels of this ilk owe allegiance to “The Lord of the Rings,” I hope I have created a new world with enoughand to add something to the genre.
I wrote it in a style I would choose to read. A negative review stated that it was sparse and barely adequate at the beginning, while positive ones have described it as fast paced, and several people have said reading it was like watching a movie. The latter comments are very pleasing as I have alwaysquickly, skimming over long, drawn out descriptions of scenery and the like, to get to the heart and action of the story.
Tyler: You mentioned earlier that you created dwarves and other typical creatures in fantasy stories, but added a twist or made them distinctive. Will you give us an example of how you did so?
Robert: The dwarves have an interesting power that grants them a special weapon, and gives them a devastating edge when gathered in large numbers, but I’ll leave it to readers to find out for themselves. It is first seen in an exciting battle scene that one reader said was the most vivid and exciting he had read! The elves are introduced while in a particularly bad way; again I will leave it to the reader to discover how and why they were sundered.
Tyler: Which books, authors, or films would you say influenced you the most in creating your own fantasy world?
Robert: I would have to say the sadly departed David Gemmell’s books have been my biggest influence. Many others as well though, very obviously Tolkien, David Eddings, Julian May, Stephen King, Christopher Stasheff, and several others.
Movies have had little bearing. Although the adaption of “The Lord of the Rings” to the big screen were, for the most part, brilliant, especially the second, “The Two Towers.” And the film, “The 13th Warrior,” has had a little influence on the second book.
Tyler: Do you enjoy fantasy films, even if they have had little impact on your writing? Have you imagined “The Siege of Scarn” being made into a film? Any guess on who would play the roles of Connor and Janice?
Robert: I enjoy most films and particularly fantasy films. I have envisioned “The Siege of Scarn” as a movie. I recently saw the brilliant, boys own romp, 300, and one particular actor in that film caught my eye-Michael Fasbender took a great part and I genuinely think he would make a superb Connor. As for Janice, I am undecided, although whoever it was would have to take on a duel role, at least for part of the story…and I know you’ll ask, but you’ll have to read the book!
Tyler: Our reviewer at Reader Views commented that the book was full of blood and gore, but she enjoyed it nonetheless. Do you find it difficult to write battle scenes and fill them with blood and gore? How do you make a battle interesting to your readers so that they are fascinated by it, even the ones who are squeamish?
Robert: I really enjoyed penning the battle scenes, and the siege writing. This is sometimes where I personally think other books fall down. From my own experience, and talking to others enthusiasts in the genre, you can find other stories flitting about away from battle to story building and character building, then back to battle, and then away again. Whereas I have tried to keep to the siege in my book, admittedly from many different viewpoints, but concentrating entirely on the fighting and effects of the battle for most of the second half of “The Siege of Scarn.”
I really enjoyed “The Two Towers” movie, but I would have loved to see the siege at Helm’s Deep as a seamless feature. As for gory or bloody, when you include swords, spears and arrows, there’s going to be lots of it. But I hope I’ve tempered it with enough humanity and pathos to smooth the way. And I think I have considering the reviews, including the Reader Views review, where I received comments like, “I don’t normally enjoy reading this type of book, but…” usually followed by positive comments despite the “blood and gore.”
Tyler: What do you most enjoy about writing fantasy?
Robert: The freedom of imagination, in a fantasy world anything is possible. It removes the limitations of time and location. Allowing you to create almost any situation you can imagine.
Tyler: “Trance Warriors” is only the first book in the series. Will you give us a hint of what is to come next in the series and when we can expect the second volume?
Robert: I can tell you the second book is at the final editing stage and will be titled “Connor’s Folly.” It follows Connor to new lands ands and reveals a potentially much greater threat than was first revealed in book one.
I have provisionally planned four books in the series, book three is very roughly written and book four grows every day in my head.
Tyler: Thank you for joining me today, Robert. Before we go will you tell our readers about your website and what additional information they might find there about “Trance Warriors: The Siege of Scarn”?
Robert: Thank you too, Tyler. You can go to
Tyler R. Tichelaar of Reader Views was pleased to be joined by Robert C., to talk about his new novel “Trance Warriors: The Siege of Scarn,” Apex Publishing Ltd (2006), ISBN 9781904444596.
Lost Girls byis one of those books you hate to love! The storyline of is horrendous; however, the story created surrounding the topic is an exciting, fast-paced thriller that takes you from the cliffs of Mount McKinley to the jungles of ! Shuman is a 20-year veteran of the Washington D. C., Metropolitan Police Department and he writes with the fascinating detail that comes from that experience!
But then he addedas his main character-not somebody you’d meet on the streets of D.C. Sherry has one ability; she can touch the hand of deceased individuals and see their last 18 seconds of thoughts! Sometimes those thoughts are those that we would all expect to have-thoughts of our loved ones, or thoughts based on their beliefs about life after death. Surprisingly, many different thoughts can also occur within those seconds, and sometimes Sherry is able to discover those thoughts and use them to help the living!
And it was based upon that hope that Sherry was whisked away to Mount McKinley where a sudden storm had caught many climbers somewhere on that mountain. One climber had fallen and was hanging from his supports, clearly visible from the ground. It was hoped that by taking Sherry to him, she would be able to see his thoughts and perhaps gain information on the location of those with whom he had been climbing. And, indeed, she was able to learn the coordinates of where the remainder of his group was and they were rescued!
While that is just the exciting beginning, the remainder of what she saw in those 18 seconds, was so hideous that Sherry couldn’t just forget them! She had seen jungles, a castle, a red room, a chair with a woman who was being tortured-visions that were so terrifying that the man who had died had found himself reliving them as he, too, met his death.
Little by little, things begin to happen. A policewoman is kidnapped. A young woman on a cruise does not make it back to her ship. News of drugs andare whispered in the dark. Interpol is finally able to begin putting things together. One of the first solid leads is that the man who had died on Mount McKinley was the son of a major drug lord who had recently died! And then another death, this time in , brings news that his death was connected to having seen women being held in a prison in Haiti.
When it is discovered that the young girl from the cruise ship is from a very rich and connected family and her mother refuses to accept not finding out where her daughter is, Sherry is once again contacted, joins together with the girl’s mothers to try to discover what she can from the murdered man who had seen the imprisoned women. When she reaches the location of the corpse, she soon finds herself comparing visions with the localpriest!
Needless to say, this novel is loaded with twists and turns as pieces of information are collected and molded together to find the location of the castle. While the gift ofexperience is part of the storyline, I found the overall and much more compelling. The book is well written, a page-turner, and just might be read in one sitting, as I did!
Highly recommended! But please consider this book adult content!
Lost Girls: A
Simon & Schuster
Give me a bloody sword and a loaded gun and put me on the deck of a tall ship, guns blazing, the sails cracking and men yelling defiance as the decks run red. –All of course in a book.
Finishing All of C.S. Forrester’s Hornblowers is only the beginning of some exciting and well written stories of the sea. The Royal navy and the tyrant Napoleon provide enough drama and action to fuel several of my favorite historical series.
Ramage begins on the deck of a sinking ship with all the other officers dead. In the face of enemy guns Ramage must step up and take command, navel battles, beautiful women, fights with the admiralty ensue.
Some stories of the sea have an uneven balance as they present the
in the time of Napoleon. Some want us to know every navel term, pull on all the running rigging and memorize the chain of command; others throw their heroes into one deadly trap after another. Pope’s stores satisfy our need for authentic will providing a believable and imaginative story that does not bog down in detail.
For purists, Ramage may be a bit too romantic. There is actually a strong female in the first book as a major character and essential part of the story. Ramage is well liked by his men and doesn’t believe in flogging or wasting their lives. Pope does not dwell on the stricter side of the royal navy. But, as an action“Good Read” it works.
Each writer develops a unique character with personality traits he hopes will appeal to the reader and yet provide for logical decisions and actions that fuel the tensions in the story. When I read that Ramage was another aristocrat in command, I approached the book with a weather eye. But, Ramage has “good character”. He is loyal to his men who he values as more than a means to furthering his career. So, the men under his command are present as rounded and interesting people who look up to their commander and further our interest in the story.
I like Ramage and his action filled stories. While rich, Ramage is not well connected and his family history puts him at odds with the admiralty. Ramage must watch out for the French on one side and his superiors on the other.
Dudley Pope was a historian who knew his business and yet knew how to tell a story of action and adventure. He puts in people we want to read about while giving us an authentic creation of an age. Ramage is history that’s a lot of fun to read.
The Count of Monte Cristo is well known as the ultimateabout . In this we get to follow Edmund Dante’s wrongful imprisonment for fourteen years. The woman he is engaged to gets stolen from him, and his father dies a horrible painful death. While he is locked up in a cell trying to starve himself to escape the pain, Dante sees the people responsible for his imprisonment gain power and wealth. Slowly he transforms from a generous and good man into a man who wants vengeance on those who have done him wrong.
As thecontinues we are introduced to some new characters and their personalities. Dante eventually manages to escape, and returns as the new Count of Monte Cristo, a very wealthy man whose identity is not known to any of the characters in the . We soon find out that he is plotting something when he gets close to those responsible for his imprisonment. There is a very long set-up here but after about half the book it eventually becomes clear what he has planned.
What is most interesting with thisis Dante’s transformation from a good man in the beginning of the book, but when he returns as the Count of Monte Cristo he has changed completely. He turns into a vile character, cold and ruthless, destroying his enemies fortunes and families. Even though we know what Dante has gone through it can be hard to sympathize with him, especially when he punishes the innocent family members of his enemies. Dante soon realizes that his need for has been controlling him when an innocent boy gets killed. After this he forgives the man responsible for his own imprisonment and allows himself to become the generous man he was before.
Although sometimes it can be long and tedious, this is a beautiful story about the tragic but hopeful life of Edmund Dante. The characters of the book is not always likable but in the end it is worth reading.
What would you do if you had heard that there was a secret gateway into another world? Would you set out to find it? Then this new book is for you! What an! I thoroughly enjoyed Four Paths to Forever by !
When Sandra Adams was just a little girl, she often traveled with her father, one time visiting the ruins in Canyon DeChelly in northern Arizona. There, their guide, Joe Eaglefeather, shared with them the story of the “Sipapu.” At the age of ten, she eagerly asked what it was. And then learned about “the gateway from the Inner World to the Upper World.” A gateway that you could only go through once and never go back! A legend? A story told to delight a young child?
What it did was create a life-long goal for Sandra-to find the Sipapu! Her career choice was in fact selected to help her; and as a professor of, nearly 25 years later, she was asked to take over and head up a dig that had been found in Kentucky. Her boss, Dr. Julius Weather, who was head of the department, was quite open with Sandra-this was her last chance to prove herself as a faculty member. Many had heard of her “hunt” for the mythical gateway and considered her an “embarrassment” to the university.
The group was small, two civilian volunteers; but as she worked there in Kentucky, she could not help but notice Tom Bentley-as more than a team member. Indeed, they soon acknowledged their mutual attraction. Tom revealed an important secret about meeting her. In fact, he had once enjoyed meeting Joe Eaglefeather as a guide himself!
As they worked the new site, there were many things that did not fit with their earlier expectations; i.e., that it was once the home of Adena Indians. However, when Sandra needed to present their findings to the University, she was both ridiculed and fired. Her primary opponent was Professor Jerry Sims, who had originally been assigned to the site but had been unable to go. But Tom had already offered her another job-and now she was free to accept!
According to legend, the gateway to the Upper World had first occurred in 2000 B.C. At that time a group of individuals, named the Kulato, had come through at the command of their gods. They were to meet the people across this land and share with them their knowledge and teach them how it could be used. The 200 that came through had been divided and sent in four directions, according to maps and instructions that had been provided.
Lucas moves back and forth from the past to the present so that readers are able to see the historical perspective of the story, as well as what happened as Sandra, joined by Tom, and others decide to determine whether the sipapu was real or not. Led by dreams, spirits, and the intelligence of those finally brought together, anof a lifetime begins-to find the gateway-and, yes, if it was real, to go through into the other world!
Lucas has weaved a beautifully crafted story that will speak to the very hearts of readers who look for adventure-seek that buried treasure-or follow their fate! Were they successful in finding a gateway? Is there an inner world that those who are seeking may find?
I, for one, certainly hope that a sequel is already in the works! We want to know the end of this lifetime adventure! In the meantime, I highly recommend that you take your first step-read Four Paths to Forever!
Four Paths to Forever