Tuesday, September 20, 2016

My Review Of Daughter of Deaths By Christopher Mannino

Tell us about your book and how the story came to be. 

Daughter of Deaths is the final book in The Scythe Wielder’s Secret trilogy. The series as a whole emerged from a trip I took while studying at Oxford. During a side-trip to Tintagel, Cornwall, the supposed birthplace of King Arthur, I became stranded. I had no car or phone, and no way back to Oxford, since the next bus arrived the following day. I ended up finding a pub that let me spend the night, but it was a noisy place and I got little sleep. At 4 am the following morning I walked out onto Barras Nose, a rocky outcropping that juts out into the ocean. I crawled on all fours, fighting fierce winds from every direction. There were no railings and I could’ve easily fallen off the fifty foot cliffs into the ocean. I watched the dawn rise over the castle ruin and Cornish coast, with no people visible. I imagined a character completely alone, whose life was in danger, attacked from every side much like the winds were attacking me. However, the character wasn’t afraid. Susan emerged from that moment.

  What three words best describe your main character?

Leader, Motivated, Brave

Do you have a method for creating your characters, their names and what do you think makes them believable?

At first I started picturing the situations and imagining who would be there. Many of the names have meanings, such as Plamen, which is a Slavic name meaning “fire.” In the prequel Cauldron of Fate, the process that led to both Sindril’s name and Cronk’s name is discussed in the plot- since Deaths take a new name when they are certified.

 Do your characters follow your plot path or do they take on a life of their own? Do you keep them in check?

Daughter of Deaths is the first novel I outlined in detail. Tying up all the threads in the trilogy took a lot of planning. The characters evolved and changed a bit during the writing, but the plots were already laid out.

 Have you ever suffered from writer’s block? If so, how did you over come it?

Not really. I work full time as a teacher, and writing is my second full-time job. I also have a new baby, which means time management is absolutely necessary and very difficult. I make a concerted effort to write 200 words minimum every day. That’s a small amount, less than this interview, but enough to keep me writing at least a little every day. 

What types of books do you like to read?

I enjoy all types of novels. I especially enjoy books with interesting worlds and vivid characters.

What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

Spend time with my wife and baby son, and read. Honestly “free time” is something I haven’t had much of in a long time.

What’s next for your writing? Are you working on a new story?

I am currently querying agents with an adult mystery/thriller with sci-fi elements. The novel combines elements of Dan Brown and Michael Crichton.

Beyond that, I am currently working on an adult high fantasy series that I am extremely excited about, and will likely be a number of novels.

What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve received?

            Never give up.

Where can readers find you and your books?


 My Review:  Of course, I loved Daughter of Deaths. I have had the pleasure of reading all three wonderful books. Great, vivid characters that a reader can connect with. I know I did. Christopher builds a whole new world a reader can get lost in. I know I did many times. Will I ever be free from this hell? Susan thought. "You are a daughter of three worlds, Susan. You are a human born in the Mortal World. Now you live in the World of Deaths with traces of ancient Elemental blood flowing in your veins. A child of yours could become a Dragon Key. With a single act you and I both gain our freedom." Susan's friends try to rescue her. Thanks, Christopher, for an awesome read.

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