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Saturday, August 28, 2010

A minute with author M.K. Hobson (includes contest)

A Minute with M.K. Hobson

M.K. Hobson is the author of THE NATIVE STAR, a paranormal historical which is receiving great buzz from the likes of Gail Carriger, Madeleine Robins, and C.C. Finlay. Camille Alexa of Green Man Review calls it "a real ride" with "rich, tightly-woven magical, social, and historical detail."

Welcome, Mary. Tell us about your debut novel.

THE NATIVE STAR is set in an 1876 America where magic is a mostly-accepted part of society. It follows the adventures of Emily Edwards, a timber-camp witch from California, and Dreadnought Stanton, a snooty New York City warlock with a past. Together, they travel across the country having magical adventures and trying to stay one step ahead of murderous blood-sorcerors who are trying to reclaim a magical artifact from Emily.

You say that magic is a "mostly accepted" part of society. What do you mean?

Well, just as most things were in the 19th century, magic is a man's game. While Warlocks are considered upstanding businessmen, women who practice magic for a living (as opposed to dabbling in it as a hobby) are derided as skycladdische—basically, on a par with a prostitute. Also, just as in the real 19th century (and on to this day, as a matter of fact) there are religious groups who take exception to the practice of magic. Both of these elements—sexism and intolerance—play a role in THE NATIVE STAR.

Sexism and intolerance? Those seem like heavy themes for a fantasy romance—especially since your short fiction has often been humorous.

Well, I definitely wanted to try and capture the flavor of the era, both good and bad. I also touch on racism and the rise of mass media and consumerism. The interesting thing about the 1870s in America is that they were dealing issues similar to those we're dealing with today. A lot of people were moving from the country into the cities, which meant increasing social tensions. There was a lot of corporate swindling, rancorous partisan politics, and a huge gulf between rich and poor. But at the same time, there was this drive to mythologize America, to celebrate its accomplishments and sweep the bad stuff under the rug. A lot of lessons from that time are still relevant today.

But despite some of the heavy themes, there's a lot of humor in the book. I can't write anything without a bit of slapstick creeping in. One poor character gets thrown into the blackberry bushes a lot.

Tell me about your hero and heroine. Why do you think readers will like them?

Emily and Dreadnought are definitely a case of opposites attracting. Madeline Robins, in her blurb for the book, described Emily as "outspoken, brash, loving, and true; a delight to spend time with." When I was writing Emily, I found myself imagining what my mother's mother must have been like when she was young. My grandma came up through the depression, raised five kids, taught school, and was active in women's clubs and organizations. She had a vibrant extroverted energy that I tried to capture for Emily. Stanton, on the other hand, is an introvert. He keeps secrets and protects himself with a snarky, elitist shell. It's up to Emily to pull him out of his shell, which she does by tweaking him every chance she gets. His cool rationality, on the other hand, is a good foil for Emily's more impulsive nature.

So what's next for you?

THE NATIVE STAR is the first book in a duology. The second book, called THE HIDDEN GODDESS, follows Emily and Stanton's continuing adventures in New York City and comes out in April 2011.

Contest Time

M.K. Hobson is giving away a signed copy of her book THE NATIVE STAR and a handmade lavender sachet. This is only open to US mailing addresses.

How To Enter

What are you reading?

No book = No Entry

Earn more entries for each link you place about this contest on the net. You can post on Facebook, Twitter & MySpace but make sure you add links here for me to confirm your entries! However please do not make individual postings for each entry. Please post all your entries in one post.

Advertise Amberkatze's Book Blog on your site and get an extra entry for this and every other contest!

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You can also earn extra entries by emailing your friends about the contest. Just make sure you send a copy of your email or receipt to me at Amberkatzes_book_blog at gmx dot net.

Make sure you post your links here so I can confirm your entries.

Keep the contests going by using the Bookdepository.com links/Banners below and around the site!

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The contest will stay open until Sunday 5th of September 2010 4pm CET and the winner will be picked by a randomizer. Entrants should check back to see if they have won. I do not hunt down winners and will pick new winners for any prizes not claimed within 7 days.


debbie said...

I am reading what dreams may come.

shaunesay said...

This sounds very interesting, I just visited Dodge City, KS, famous roughly around this same time period, so I'm definitely in the mood for a paranormal romance in that setting!

Right now I'm reading Night Lost by Lynn Viehl.

Thanks so much for stopping by and for the contest!

shaunesay @ gmail dot com

Curling up by the Fire said...

I am currently reading Velocity and In Free Fall. I always read more than one book at a time.

icewoman96 at gmail dot com

Vickie said...

Added this to the Wanton Wantin' Book List. It looks hellah awesome!

Currently reading:
Bedside book: THE TOMB: Repairman Jack #1 - F Paul Wilson, UF

Purse book: LEAD PIPE CINCH: Georgiana Neverall Mystery #2 - Christy Evans, cozy

BOCD in the car: CHANGES: Dresden Files #12 - Jim Butcher, narr James Marsters

JenM said...

Currently reading Too Good to Be True by Kristan Higgins and Warbreaker by Brandan Sanderson. One contemp. romance, one fantasy - I like to change it up so I don't get bored.

Linda Henderson said...

What an intriguing sounding book, I would love to read it. Right now I'm reading She's Gone Country by Jane Porter.I always enjoy her books.

seriousreader at live dot com

Pamk said...

sounds like a interesting book. I'm between books at the moment. I just finished up When Blood Calls by JK Beck and am debating what to read now either Sin Undone or Kresley cole's new one.

Barbara E. said...

I just finished the trilogy of Fred the Mermaid books by Mary Janice Davidson and now I'm going to start reading Keri Arthur's Moon Sworn.

The Native Star sounds intriguing and I'm looking forward to reading it.


Martha Lawson said...

This book sounds really good!I am currently reading the Serpent Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt.

mlawson17 at hotmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I am reading The Crimes of Love by The Marquis de Sade
patrick dot clare at gmail

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a really interesting plot. Ty so much for sharing !

I'm reading Possess Me by R.G. Alexander.

Pam S
pams00 @ aol.com

tetewa said...

I'm reading Fearless Fourteen by janet Evanovich! tWarner419@aol.com

Read for your future! said...

I am reading Mockingjay and loving it.

Unknown said...

I am a follower. I am reading Linger. Please enter me in contest. Tore923@aol.com

E.J. Stevens said...

I am currently reading The Boneshaker by Kate Milford. :)

Thanks for the giveaway!

From the Shadows


Andra Lyn said...

Well, I just started back up at the University so I haven't been up on my Paranormal wants...

But I am catching up on my Rachel Caine's Weather Warden Series. I have Cape Storm in my hands and Total Eclipse on order!

Julie S said...

I'm reading Dead Witch Walking, which is pretty neat. Another good series to catch up on.


Bookyurt said...

I'm re-reading the Harry Potter series - I'm up to the Goblet of Fire =)


All This Silence... said...

I just started reading Timeline by Michael Crichton for school. I liked the movie a lot, so the book has to be better, right?

k_sunshine1977 said...

right now i'm ready to start desire me by robyn dehart, as i just finished mark of the demon by diana rowland. i switch genres back and forth so i don't burn out on any one genre....

k_sunshine1977 at yahoo dot com

Stephanie said...

I'm reading Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins.


A'lina said...

I'm finishing up Into the Dark by Gena Showalter and I'll be starting a YA next.

linaramz at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

I just finished Mercedes Lackey's The Sleeping Beauty and am going to start on Mockingjay, the final Hunger Games book. So excited! :D

Audra said...

I am rereading Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows. Please enter me into the contest.

slb3334 said...

toxic bachelors by danielle steele although usually have 2 or 3 books going.

Unknown said...

I am reading "I am Number Four". Very good read! And there's going to be a sequel about Number Six, and there will be a movie made off of it soon. :)

jellybelly82158 said...

I a reading Whisper Kiss - Dragonfire #5 by Deborah Cooke

Shared on Twitter

Shared on Facebook

jellybelly82158 at gmail dot com

KMichelleC87 said...

I am currently reading Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult. Thanks for the contest.


Deborah Wellenstein said...

Right now, I am reading The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I don't normally read teen fiction, but this series got such high marks I thought I would give it a try. Very good so far!

Rosie said...

I'm currently reading Tempest Rising . . . thought it was time to start that series.

rosie0512 @ hotmail . com

mmentor said...

please and thank you for the opportunity

Kimberly B. said...

I am rereading Sister of the Dead by Barb & J.C. Hendee and Moominland Midwinter by Tove Jansson. Thanks for the great giveaway!

bac1 said...

im reading a biography by ann margret

Mardel said...

This sound different - good different. I'm looking forward to this one.

Right now I'm reading a book by Tanya Huff - The Enchantment Emporium.

SiNn said...

rightnow im reading Nora Roberts night tales : book one night shift and night shadows

I love nora

Curling up by the Fire said...

This sounds interesting.

I am currently reading Jealousy by Lili St. Crow, Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin and Tess and Oliver by Tess Callaghan.

icewoman96 at gmail dot com

Victoria said...

I'm currently reading Rachel Vincent's ALPHA.

kalynnick said...

Right now, I'm actually reading two books, they are Deception
by Jenny Penn and Burning Alive by Shannon K. Butcher

kalynnick AT yahoo DOT com

Karen W. said...

Thanks for the interview! The book sounds fantastic, M.K.!

I'm currently reading TOUGH CUSTOMER by Sandra Brown.

Thanks for the contest!


Aleksandra Nearing said...

I'm reading Cara Elliot's To Sin With A Scoundrel
aleksa91 hotmail

Kim (Randominities) said...

I am reading The Fourth Bear from Jasper Fforde. It's part of the Nursery Crimes Division. :)

saturdaynightfever said...

"Sex At Dawn" by Ryan/Jetha


Unknown said...

Black Magic Sanction by Kim Harrison

Louis H said...

"Crossing Oceans" by Gina Holmes

Louis H said...

here is my tweet

Louis H said...


clynsg said...

Right now, am reading West and East: the War That Came Early, buy Harry Turtledove.

cgclynsg0 at gmail dot com

Breanne said...

I'm reading ArchEnemy, the 3rd book in the Looking Glass Wars triology

bmweida at yahoo dot com

Unknown said...

I am reading Akashan'te by Vicky Burkholder. garrettsambo@aol.com