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Monday, October 27, 2014

Interview and Giveaway: Melanie McFarlane, author The Descendants and the Missing Guardian

I'm thrilled to have Melanie McFarlane here today to chat about her new middle-grade fantasy! Plus, some lucky people will win a copy...

The Descendants and the Missing Guardian
by Melanie McFarlane
Hidden Worlds Publishing

Twelve-year-old Seth Reid can’t seem to get his life back together since he lost his Dad one year ago. On the verge of getting suspended from school for fighting, and nearly failing every class, he meets Belvedere, a quirky shape-shifter, seeking help to save the Universe. On an adventure to another world filled with dragons, crystals, and a mysterious dark infection, will Seth finally find where he fits in this world?

What three words best describe your book The Descendants and the Missing Guardian?
 Fantastic elemental adventure.

Can you give us your BEST one sentence pitch to convince readers, especially reluctant readers, to give The Descendants and the Missing Guardian a try?
In a world where dragons, elemental shapeshifters, and a mysterious dark infection run rampant, can ordinary twelve year old, Seth Reid, save the universe?
Grab a copy of the The Descendants and the Missing Guardian and answer the following:
 Favorite chapter?
 Chapter Sixteen – just because the ME are sisters who write the destiny of the world, doesn’t mean they always get along!

 Favorite page?
 Page 96 (last 2 pages of chapter 8) – This is the first time Seth really feels like he could lose his family.

 Favorite place/setting?
 The mechanical, underground city of Boreas – so much potential!

 Flip to a random page and give us a 1-2 sentences teaser:
Page 191 (middle of chapter 19): The sound of the chatter from another night dragon pierced his ears, and Seth held tight to Nox, afraid of what was going to happen if the beasts caught up to them. The blue moon’s light had faded away, leaving the group in the darkness.
What inspired The Descendants and the Missing Guardian? How did the story come to be?
 I started writing this book when I was off work with my first child. I had just read Spiderwick, and wanted to write something about me and my two younger brothers. That was eight years ago and I only completed the first chapter at that time (which has completely changed since then). Four years later, I was off work again, this time with my second child. I came across the chapter on my laptop, and started writing it again; I haven't stopped!

Can you tell us about your hero, Seth Reid? What makes him unique and what do you love about him?
 Seth is the kind of kid I like to root for. He hasn’t had the easiest year, since his dad died in a terrible farming accident, and he keeps messing up due to his quick temper. He is his own worst enemy, but doesn’t realize it yet. He likes to snowboard, skateboard: pretty much anything that he can do independently – but he doesn’t realize he is drawn to these sports because of his link to the elements.

If you were a shapeshifter, but could only shift into ONE other form, which form would you choose?
 Ooh, that’s a fun question. I love the Numinous people in my book, who are made from the air element. But honestly, I have a thing about dragons. I would love to be an earth dragon!

If you could jump into ANY make-believe world, which would you choose and what would you do there?
 Hands down: The Tardis...I am so ready to be the next companion!
As a middle-grade author, why do you think MG is so important and popular? Who are your all time favorite middle-grade hero and heroine?
 Middle grade is an amazing time in a kids life; they’re spreading their wings into independence and testing their boundaries. Choices you make in the middle years can carry on through the rest of your life, will you be courageous? Will you be a leader? The world becomes wide open for unlimited possibilities at that age!
 My favourite MG heroine is Meg Murry from Madeliene L’Engle’s, A Wrinkle in Time. Her self-doubt and lack of confidence suck me in to want her to succeed.
 My favourite MG hero is Tom in Ray Bradbury’s, The Halloween Tree. He stood up for what he believed in and each of these kids all gave one year of their life to save their friend, Pipkin. How amazing is that!
Fill in the blanks:
 I’m really awesome at skipping rocks. That and getting crumpled paper balls in the trashbin…all air!
 I’m really embarrassed to admit that I totally still love playing Barbies. I think that’s why I love playing The Sims so much!
 The last great book I read Ellen Potter’s, The Kneebone Boy.

If you were to create and bake a cupcake inspired by The Descendants and the Missing Guardian, what would it look and taste like, and what would you call it?
 Mmmm…cupcakes. I would make a Borean cupcake, with Mrs. Cree. The top would be a light and fluffy white icing, like the Numinous and their skye dragons. The base would be stormy and cloudy, like the windy surface of Boreas….a perfect twist of chocolate and vanilla, swirled together. It would definitely be called the Borean Mini-Cakes, after the mini-leap devices they created to jump from one world to the next!

Thank you so much for stopping by, Melanie!

 Melanie McFarlane is a passionate writer of other-wordly adventures and a supporter of all things creative. With her husband at her side and our two little girls in tow, they travel the universe to save the world, page after page. Melanie’s debut novel is The Descendants and the Missing Guardian. She is inspired by authors such as Ray Bradbury, CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, JK Rowling, and Holly Black. Melanie lives in the Land of Living Skies, somewhere north of the US border and south of the Arctic.

Win a copy of 
The Descendants and the Missing Guardian!
Melanie has generously offered up 2 printed copies of her books for two winners.
-ends 11/15
-each winner will get 1 print copy
-must be 13+ to enter
-winners will be emailed and have 48 hours to claim prize
-Word Spelunking is not responsible for lost, damaged, or stolen prizes in the mail  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Other places to win The Descendants and the Missing Guardian from Melanie:
-enter to win a free printed copy of “The Descendants and the Missing Guardian” through the Second Chapter contest.

 Details found at
 Deadline is: November 15, 2014.
 -Contest: Write a second chapter (max 1,000 words), to follow Chapter One of "The Descendants and the Missing Guardian". I am looking for originality and creativity!
 Entry Requirements: Your entry must include your name, email, that you heard about us through Word Spelunker, and your Second Chapter.Find the prologue and Chapter One, visit:

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