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Aeicha @ Word Spelunking

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Interview and Giveaway: YA author Eric Edstrom

I'm excited to have Eric Edstrom stopping by today for an interview and giveaway! Eric is the author of The Undermountain Saga, a YA series...

WS: What three words best describe THE UNDERMOUNTAIN SAGA?
EE- Adventure, wonder, romance

WS: In one sentence tell readers why they really MUST read your series?
EE- If, for some strange reason, The Undermountain Saga fails to make you thin, famous, and rich, at least you’ll have enjoyed an incredible adventure featuring a cast of teens you’ll love (or love to hate).

WS: Now, using as many sentences as you'd like, can you tell us a bit more about this series?
EE: The overarching story is about two characters: Danny and Breyona. They have very different backgrounds, and each has some issue at home they are running away from. So they apply to go on this hiking excursion, kind of like Outward Bound. They think if they can get away from home for a while, they’ll get some relief from their problems.

But then they encounter a couple creatures that make the hiking excursion much more threatening than anything they faced at home. The adventure that ensues is all about how they just want to go back to their normal lives.

When I sat down to start Undermountain, the first novel in the series, my main goal was to write something I would want to read. I wanted it to fill me with a sense of wonder. So there is an element of exploration, of discovering a new world, in all of the books.

I also like books that move. I tried to infused the story with action, drama, and humor to keep the pace up.

WS: Where did the idea or inspiration for this series come from?
EE- One day I was driving along thinking about bigfoot. I have no idea why. I had this flash of an idea that bigfoot is super technologically advanced, and that when one of them is spotted in the woods, it's because they have come up from their hidden city deep beneath the mountains.

So that's where the idea came from, but the story really isn't about bigfoot. It's about a group of teens who get sucked into the biggest adventure in the history of the human race.

WS: Who is your favorite character in this series? Who was the most difficult character to write/explore?
EE- My favorite character is a creature named TogYip. Without giving too much away, he has two heads and just cracks me up.

The most difficult character to write is probably Breyona. She's an African American teen from Chicago who goes to an exclusive, catholic high school.  I'm not female, black, a teen, or a catholic. Add to that the fact that by the end of book two (due to a combination of mistaken identity and brain download technology) she becomes a blend of two personas, each fighting for control of her body. . .

Let’s just say she’s complicated.

WS: What can readers expect from you in the future? What books/stories do you have planned?
EE- I'm working on the third and final book of The Undermountain Saga right now. It will be out in December of this year. After that I have a couple ideas for stand alone YA novels. One might be classified as paranormal, they other as literary. I’m planning a fantasy series that I’m so excited about, I have to force myself not to work on it right now.

WS: In THE UNDERMOUNTAIN SAGA your characters come face to face with a mysterious and otherworldy you believe in otherworldy/supernatural/mythical beings, such as aliens, ghosts or Bigfoot?
EE- I believe there is likely some intelligent life out there in the universe somewhere. I do not believe the aliens have landed yet. As for the rest? I just can't believe it. I wish I could, but I can’t.

WS: If you could switch lives with ANY literary character for a day, who would it be and what would you do as them?
EE- I would be Romeo and I would not drink the poison.

WS: Fill in the blanks:
I'm really awesome at songwriting.
I'm embarrassed to admit that I love Project Runway.
My favorite book as a teen was The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks.

WS: If you were to create/bake a THE UNDERMOUNTAIN SAGA cupcake, what would it look/taste like and what would you call it?
EE- Ok, so it doesn't matter what theme my cupcake has, because it's always going to be gluten-free chocolate cake with chocolate chips and chocolate/peanut butter frosting.  You bake a dozen of them, cut off the bottom half of the cupcake and just eat the bottoms to get them out of the way. Then you mash three cupcake tops together to make a frosting cake. These you serve on a small white plate and eat with a fork and a tall glass of ice cold, organic whole milk from Wisconsin holstein cows.

Call it a Bigfoot Burger.

Thank you so much Eric for answering my questions and for the very awesome and generous giveaway below!!!

Eric Edstrom: Site / Goodreads / Twitter
Eric is an author, songwriter, husband, father, and guitarist. He is the author of Undermountain andAfterlife, the first two entries in YA science fiction series The Undermountain Saga.
Eric loves working out with kettlebells and eating pretty much anything with peanut butter.

Undermountain (The Undermountain Saga #1)
Two teens from from different worlds . . .
Danny Michaelson, sixteen, just wants a little time away from his troubled home in Nashville. So when he joins a group of teens in the Canadian Rocky Mountains for a ten day hiking excursion, he's primed for adventure.
Breyona Lewis, sixteen, is a beautiful rich girl from Chicago. Outwardly cheerful, she conceals a dark secret. One she denies even to herself.
. . . the encounter of a lifetime . . .
Danny and Breyona come face to face with a creature of legend--an eight foot tall beast they tag as "bigfoot." But it's no missing link, no mere animal. And it does not want humans knowing its secrets. Because there are thousands of them here on Earth, living in a hidden city deep beneath the mountains, waiting for the day humans are "ready."
. . . friendship, love, and loyalty . . .
Separated from each other and told they may never return home, Danny, Breyona, and the others race to escape. To survive.
One is made more than human, one is made less.
One must fight, one must surrender.
Both must face the truth of who they are.

Purchase: Amazon / B&N / Smashwords

Afterlife (The Undermountain Saga #2)
Afterlife is the stunning second book in The Undermountain Saga!
They think their adventures are behind them . . .
The six teens who were rescued from a mountainside in the Canadian Rockies are now famous. But only they know the true story-of what they discovered, what they survived-of Undermountain. Those secrets bind them together and pull them toward an ill-fated reunion.
. . . the war between tangoga and bigfeet still rages . . .
The tangoga boss GorVit searches for a lost technology, the terrible weapon of a vanished race. And he'll happily use Breyona as leverage to get Danny's help.
. . . the power of ultimate destruction hangs in the balance . . .
Thrust into the midst of war, and into the arms of a beautiful queen, Danny races on a collision course with destiny. And Breyona, still testing the limits of her amazing powers, must choose between what she desires and what is right.
. . . friendship, loyalty, and temptation . . .
One will give in.
One will give up.
One will give all.
Purchase: Amazon / B&N / Smashwords 

Win a paperback or ebook copy of Undermountain (The Undermountain Saga #1)
Eric has generously offered 3 paperbook copies and 3 ebook copies of his book to give away. There will be two giveaways: US/CAN & International...
US/CAN Giveaway: 3 winners will win a paperback copy
INTERNATIONAL Giveaway: 3 winners will win an ebook copy
-Giveaway will run from 8/21 - 8/28
-There will be six winners
-Must be 13+ to enter
-Winners must claim prize within 48 hours
-I am not responsible for lost, damaged or stolen prizes
Fill out the appropriate Rafflecopter form below


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Emily White said...

Mmm...he had me at gluten free cupcakes. I'll definitely be checking his book out. Great interview!

Crystal Clifton said...

Sounds like a great book Thanks for the giveaway

Natalie @ Book Lovers Life said...

Love the sound of this, thanks so much for the chance!

Unknown said...

Thanks Aeicha for having me on your blog. I had fun with these questions! And good luck to everyone who enters the giveaway!

Wendi said...

Thank you for the giveaway they sound like great books. I can't wait to read them

Unknown said...

Hope I entered the right giveaway now. :D

ChrissieB said...

Thank you so much for the giveaway Sounds like a great book to read!