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Saturday, March 24, 2018

The Witch’s Blood by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr - Book Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

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Review by Suze

Merry has to find a way to free her brother Leo from the terrible Ronan. He's taken Leo to another reality and wants to force him to do his bidding and give up his own will. Merry will do anything she can to free her brother and this also includes magic that's forbidden by her coven. Merry is a powerful witch and the member's of the coven don't always approve of her methods. They don't want her to go after Leo, but for Merry that's simply not an option. She will get her brother back, with or without their support, and will do whatever it takes.

Merry isn't alone, she has Finn by her side. Finn is a wizard from a strict and ancient family. Witches and wizard don't usually see eye to eye, can she trust him and will he agree to help Merry with her plan to take Leo from Ronan? What will happen if they succeed? Ronan won't accept losing Leo without a fight. Are they prepared for a battle that will be more dangerous than any battle Merry has ever fought? When past and present come together it's up to Merry to find a way to save the people she loves, but magic comes at a price, will she be able to pay it?

The Witch's Blood is another fantastic gripping story by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr. Merry is fierce, strong and smart. She loves with all her heart and would do anything for the people she holds dear. She accepts any challenge if it means she can keep her family safe. She and Leo have an incredible bond and because of this they can survive anything. It's one of the things I love most about the Witch's Kiss series, this beautiful sibling connection. I loved reading about Merry and Leo once more and couldn't turn the pages quickly enough to find out if they'd find a way to defeat their enemies or if they'd end up with shattered hearts, being completely broken or worse.

Katharine and Elizabeth Corr's vivid, energetic and thorough descriptions are making their stories come to life incredibly well. I love their world building skills and really enjoy the way they write about magic. There are many mysteries that are slowly being unraveled and their great distribution of suspense kept me on the edge of my seat. The Witch's Blood is filled with unexpected twists and turns, adventure, emotions that are running high and unconditional love. I absolutely loved this terrific enchanting story and highly recommend it.

Advice

If you love stories about magic you don't want to miss The Witch's Kiss series.

About Katharine and Elizabeth Corr


Hello from the Corr sisters! As well as sisters we are also best friends; try writing a book with someone else and you’ll see why that last bit is kind of important.

After spending our childhood in Essex, we now live ten minutes away from each other in Surrey. We both studied history at university and went to work in London for a bit. So, when we both decided to write novels – on account of fictional people being much easier to deal with than real ones – it was obvious we should do it together.

Stuff Katharine likes:

Playing instruments badly; dead languages; LOTR; loud pop concerts; Jane Austen; Neill Gaiman; Loki; the Surrey Hills. Killing off characters.

Stuff Elizabeth likes:

Sketching, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, cinema, long baths, kitchen discos, Terry Pratchett, Thor, London. Saving characters.

Stuff we both like:

YA / non-YA fantasy and science fiction, Star Wars, Star Trek, each other (most of the time).

Links

Twitter Katharine: https://twitter.com/katharinecorr 
Twitter Elizabeth: https://twitter.com/lizcorr_writes

Writing The Witch’s Kiss trilogy: a layer cake
Guest post by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr

When Anniek and Suze asked us to write about our inspiration for The Witch’s Kiss trilogy, we started thinking about onions. And sponge cakes. And other things with layers. Because for every story, there are layers of inspiration, some more superficial, some with roots deep in the writer’s soul.

The obvious inspiration for our trilogy is fairytales: we both enjoyed the vividly illustrated Ladybird fairytale books as small children. The Witch’s Kiss (book 1) is a loose, gender-bent retelling of Sleeping Beauty. The Witch’s Tears (book 2) explores the story of Rumpelstiltskin, while our new book, The Witch’s Blood, has overtones of Rapunzel.

Reading has influenced our writing more generally, too. We’ve always loved fantasy: stories of witches, wizards and mysteriously discovered swords. Spending time in magical realms – Narnia, Middle Earth, Earthsea – helped shape the creation of our own fictional world. We wanted the half-magical, half-ordinary place that our characters inhabit to feel real and organic. For the reader to have a sense that perhaps there could be a coven of witches in her own town, or a cursed prince asleep beneath a local lake.

And then, there’s our love of history. We’ve given our witches and wizards roots in actual historical settings, and tried to show how the use of magic, and interactions between different magical groups, has changed over time. Finn, a wizard, talks about his family gaining magical ability in 1483. Roshni, an older witch, warns Merry (our main character) to stay away from Finn. Merry, of course, wants to know why.

‘Because all wizards are untrustworthy?’

Roshni let out a single, short laugh.

‘No. Because in the past, they used to try to kill us.’


This short interaction also shows another influence: feminism. Powerful women have always been a threat to the patriarchy. It’s no surprise that, in fairytales, the women with power and agency are often witches, and always end up coming to a sticky end. So, we decided to make a witch our hero instead; the prince is the one who gets rescued.

But of course, our own experiences are at the root of everything we write. We’ve both experienced death – that of our mum, and of other important people in our lives. And so do our characters. Here, Finn is trying to explain how he felt when his brother died:

‘I felt like part of me had died. Like I’d failed him. Like my old life had ended…And I felt guilty. Because I was relieved…I was relieved that I wouldn’t have to worry about him anymore, or search for a cure, or go through the endless cycle of hope and disappointment.’
And maybe because of our mother’s illness and death, we’ve always been incredibly close. So it makes sense that the most important relationship in our trilogy, the one that continues across all three books, is not romantic – it’s the relationship between Merry and her brother Leo. In The Witch’s Kiss, Leo is always there to support Merry. In The Witch’s Tears, we find out whether their bond can survive the aftermath of events in book 1, as Leo gets drawn further into his sister’s magical world. And in The Witch’s Blood, Merry has decide exactly what – and who – she is willing to sacrifice, to save her brother’s life.

Does she succeed? You’ll have to read the book! But in any event, we hope we’ve reflected love in all its forms across the series, particularly the bond between siblings – which in our experience can sometimes be the strongest bond of all.

Giveaway

One very lucky reader of With Love For Books will receive a hardcover copy of The Witch’s Blood by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.

27 comments:

  1. Thank you for the review and giveaway, I love this series!

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  2. The Witch's Blood sounds visually rich and dark with exciting world building and engaging characters. A perfect, and ultimately uplifting, ending to the Witch’s Kiss trilogy.

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  3. Sounds like a good tale of witches and wizards and suchlike!

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  4. I love books with magic and witches! It sounds awesome!

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  5. I love magical stories, this sounds like a fantastic series.

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  6. love this kind of tale, and this looks great!

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  7. Merci pour cet entretien !! Ce livre me tente bien !

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  8. I think it's wonderful that 2 sisters can get together and write such a fantastic book, not only one book but others too. :-)

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  9. I'm looking forward to reading all 3 in the series and seeing you at one of the book festivals this year.

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  10. This looks like an awesome trilogy that I would get into...the book covers grabbed my eyes first and that would be why I would originally pick up the book if I was in a book store

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  11. Great review can't wait to read it.

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  12. Wow..that's an amazing review..I thought it was only about the magical world but it does connect us with reality also.

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  13. Gear review and story line! I would love to read it.

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  14. The book sounds right up my alley. I have several things in common with the authors like Jane Austin, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Star Wars.

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  15. Thank you for the great review and guest post :)

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  16. I love story about witch and wizard. Thanks for the review and giveaway.

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  17. I love that the authors are sisters & best friends.

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  18. I loved the Ladybird fairytale books too! My Mum taught me to read with them and I'm convinced this is why I still love to read.

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  19. Don't read as many "witches" and "wizards" books as I ought to do, apart from the HP ones of course. But this sounds a great one to read to get me reading some different ones. Thanks for the chance.

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  20. Can't wait to read this book, it sounds so amazing! And I love that cover ♥

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  21. Thanks for the great prize and competition. Good luck everyone!

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