Today, I welcome author Annie Douglass Lima to my blog for a quick interview, and to talk about her brand new fantasy release, The Collar & the Cavvarach. Enjoy! ~ S.G. Rogers
Bensin, a teenage slave and martial artist, is desperate to see his little sister freed. But only victory in the Krillonian Empire’s most prestigious tournament will allow him to secretly arrange for Ellie’s escape. Dangerous people are closing in on her, however, and Bensin is running out of time. With his one hope fading quickly away, how can Bensin save Ellie from a life of slavery and abuse?
What is the Collar for, and What is a Cavvarach?
The story is set in a world very much like our own, with just a few major differences. One is that slavery is legal there. Slaves must wear metal collars that lock around their neck, making their enslaved status obvious to everyone. Any slave attempting to escape faces the dilemma of how and where to illegally get their collar removed (a crime punishable by enslavement for the remover).
Another difference is the popularity of a martial art called cavvara shil. It is fought with a cavvarach (rhymes with “have a rack”), an unsharpened weapon similar to a sword but with a steel hook protruding from partway down its top edge. Competitors can strike at each other with their feet as well as with the blades. You win in one of two ways: disarming your opponent (hooking or knocking their cavvarach out of their hands) or pinning their shoulders to the mat for five seconds.
Click HERE to read a description of the setting and what life is like for slaves and others in that world.
Click HERE to read an excerpt.
Click HERE to buy from Amazon.
Click HERE to download The Collar and the Cavvarach from Smashwords (for Nook or in other digital formats).
Annie Douglass Lima spent most of her childhood in Kenya and later graduated from Biola University in Southern California. She and her husband Floyd currently live in Taiwan, where she teaches fifth grade at Morrison Academy. She has been writing poetry, short stories, and novels since her childhood, and to date has published ten books (one YA action and adventure novel, four fantasies, a puppet script, and four anthologies of her students’ poetry). Besides writing, her hobbies include reading (especially fantasy and science fiction), scrapbooking, and international travel.
Connect with the Author Online:
And now, for a quick interview!
Annie, what draws you to fantasy?
Reality just doesn’t offer me enough freedom as a writer! I like to be able to make the rules. When I read, I like knowing that things could happen that just can’t in the real world. Having said that, The Collar and the Cavvarach isn’t really fantasy, at least not in the typical sense. It’s more of an alternate reality. If you were to step into that world, you would probably assume you were still in our own world – except for a few key details, like the prevalence of slavery.
What book(s) are similar to yours?
While this isn’t technically a dystopian story, fans of the dystopian genre would probably enjoy The Collar and the Cavvarach. One of my beta readers said it reminded her of The Hunger Games (but she liked my book better!).
Which authors have inspired you most?
C.S. Lewis provided my very first literary inspiration. More recently, I’ve enjoyed the works of Anne Elisabeth Stengl. Her Tales of Goldstone Wood series is amazingly crafted. I love the way the time periods in some of the books overlap, focusing on different characters and sometimes different views of the same events. That storytelling style influenced my fantasy series, the Annals of Alasia, though not this book as much.