Friday, September 28, 2012

The Assassin’s Curse Blog tour: Cassandra Clarke’s Top 5 Fantasy Heroines (+ Int’l giveaway)

Hi everyone

Today I’d like to welcome the lovely Cassandra Clarke, author of YA fantasy novel The Assassin’s Curse, to my blog today.

I was immediately intrigued when I first came across The Assasin’s Curse. There’s nothing more I enjoy than a good fantasy read, and this seems to certainly have it all: a kick-butt heroine, pirates, and an intriguing curse that needs to be broken.

Of course, the premise of her novel got me thinking about fantasy heroines – since Ananna sounds like the kind of heroine that’s right up my alley – I simply had to ask Cassandra about some of her favourite female fantasy protagonists. And boy, does her list include a fabulous selection.

Before I hand over the reins though, here’s some more info about the book. 

About the book:

Ananna of the Tanarau abandons ship when her parents try to marry her off to an allying pirate clan: she wants to captain her own boat, not serve as second-in-command to her handsome yet clueless fiancé.

But her escape has dire consequences when she learns the scorned clan has sent an assassin after her.

And when the assassin, Naji, finally catches up with her, things get even worse. Ananna inadvertently triggers a nasty curse — with a life-altering result.

Now Ananna and Naji are forced to become uneasy allies as they work together to break the curse and return their lives back to normal. 

Or at least as normal as the lives of a pirate and an assassin can be.

Add The Assassin’s Curse to your TBR pile on Goodreads.

Over to Cassandra
Top 5 Favourite Fantasy Heroines

This was a tricky list to write (I originally asked her to tell us about the fantasy characters that inspired her own).

I wouldn’t say there was any particular character who inspired me to write Ananna — the closest would probably be Anamaria from The Pirates of the Caribbean movies, although she had such a disappointingly small part!

So I decided to talk about some of my favorite fantasy heroines in general (and in no particular order):

1. Lyra Belacqua, from His Dark Materials: Lyra is a great character. She’s strong, brave, and intelligent, and even though I read those books in college (thus putting me several years older than her), I still related to her a great deal.

One of the the things I like best about Lyra is that Philip Pullman writes her as a girl — she never starts to feel like a de facto boy at any part in the story.

2. Luna Lovegood, from Harry Potter: I know Luna isn’t technically a heroine, per se, but I always wanted her to be! She’s my favorite school-age character in those books because she’s so clearly who she wants to be and never lets anyone change her.

As Harry points out, Luna is tough. In fact, she’s tougher than you expect and arguably tougher than a lot of the other kids at Hogwarts. She’s resilient, resourceful, and brilliant. Basically, I love Luna Lovegood!

3. Sophie Hatter, from Howl’s Moving Castle: Sophie is such a wonderfully unusual heroine. She’s not skilled at swordfighting or battle, but at making beautiful hats, and she only runs off to have adventures when a witch turns her into an old woman.

Sophie’s appeal comes from the fact that she’s so no-nonsense when it comes to dealing with Howl and his fire demon, Calcifer, but that she can’t turn that strength in on herself. And that makes her a very real, very compelling character.

Also, her interactions with Howl make up one of the best falling-in-love stories I’ve ever read in my life.

4. Meg Murray, from A Wrinkle in Time: This book has been one of my favorites since I first read it in junior high. At the time, I really related to Meg, who is described as awkward and unpopular and feels as if she will never measure up to her beautiful, brilliant parents (spoiler: she does).

However, she doesn’t let her insecurities hold her back when she learns that her brother is in danger. When I was thirteen, I found that quite inspiring, and now, as an adult, I find it admirable.

5. Morgaine, from The Mists of Avalon: My favorite characters are always the flawed ones, and Morgaine, as she’s written by Marion Zimmer Bradley, is a beautifully flawed character. The novel is in many ways a tragedy, with Morgaine at its center as a tragic heroine.

Throughout the story she makes mistakes and must struggle with her divided loyalties. However, she’s also strong-minded and willing to stand up for her beliefs, which are dying out in the world. Morgaine held up that novel for me; I tore through it just to see how her story would play out.

A huge thank you to Cassandra for stopping by as well as to Strange Chemistry Books for allowing me to be part of this tour.

As an added bonus, Cassandra has also kindly offered one lucky reader a chance to win an annotated copy of The Assassin’s Curse. All you need to do is fill in your details below and tell me who your favourite fantasy heroine is.

You can find her on the following sites and social networks:

Goodreads
Her website
Twitter

Update: Giveaway has now been closed. Winner will be entered into a draw, where upon an overall winner will be announced.

1 comments:

Giada M. said...

The Mists of Avalon is and will always remain one of my favorite book. I haven't read A Wrinkle in Time yet, but I'm going to really soon.
Great list! :D