hey FFFers – today the Blog Tour for CURSE BOUND by Jennette Mbewe stops here! I was fascinated by a couple of the landscapes in the novel.
But first, a little about the story.
Kael's worse fears have come true. Betrayal has shaken the Guardian Circle, the High Guardian is dead, and Ayianna and Prince Vian are in the hands of the Sorceress, but he and his companions must finish their quest, before they can attempt a rescue mission. Unfortunately, Desmond's parting gift left them stranded on the western cliffs of Nälu.
Jathil, once heir to the throne of Arashel, believes her father will aid them, but first she must face the crimes of her past. When she does, she could never believe the outcome, nor the rippling effect it would have on the nations.
Meanwhile the Alliance braces for war, but division threatens to undermine their efforts. When Nerissa returns from Ganya with the dragon regiment, she discovers a bigger problem. The curse bound are waking.
As the quest nears completion, Kael is forced to choose between his heart and duty, and neither choice bodes well with him. Either way, he will face the Sorceress and her armies sooner or later. The battle for Nälu has begun and there can be only one victor.
Isn’t that cover fabulous??
Okay, so Jennette is here to share two really cool places in this novel – The Maze and The Blue-Fire Sea Cave.
Welcome, Jennette! I’m excited to share these unique places from CURSE BOUND!
JLM: Thanks! Epic fantasy involves sweeping landscapes and cultural experiences. Much like our own world. Today, I will share with you two places we’ll see in CURSE BOUND that have NOT been seen before in the other two novels.
In Darkened Hope we did catch a teeny tiny glimpse of it, but in CURSE BOUND, you are going to experience the maze and what our characters will encounter within it. Because you know it wasn’t going to be just a maze, right?
FFF: Of course!
JLM: The Maze is first alluded to in the riddle Kael tries to decipher back in Bonazpur toward the end of Secrets
In the belly of the earth
grows a tree of hailed worth
through a maze of dark and stone
hangs the silver pinecone
No one knows who built it and the only way to reach it—yes, you guessed it—is swathed in riddles.
. . . .one must climb the highest to reach the lowest. From within, become the lowest to enter the highest to reach the lowest.
FFF: Wow – that would about drive me nuts. I’m not good with riddles.
JLM: Yeah, our characters didn’t like the riddles either, but, as Kael will soon find out, it will only make sense once you’re there. I can’t remember the maze being inspired by anything, except the process of HOW you get there.
FFF: Well, getting there is important! What inspired you during the writing of The Maze?
JLM: Two very different things inspired the world-building behind these scenes.
*Find me in the River. One of the times I was really struggling (I’ve had many, ha!), I had this song on repeat, and I was contemplating on the lyrics and I had an AHA moment. A river is the lowest point in a valley. When the story had been purely allegorical, the characters coming down into the valley represented a moment of breaking and humbling.
*Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. I love how elements of the riddles tied into the story. Thus we have Kael standing before three doors within the golden dome. He had to decide which of the three would allow him to access the maze that contains the silver pinecone.
FFF: Well, who doesn’t love Indiana Jones?
FFF: Next is the Blue-Fire Sea Cave. Just the name creates incredible images in my mind!
JLM: The real name is the Nijaulta Sea Cave. Its name means Blue-fire. Once you stand within this massive cavern, you will understand how perfect that name is. The cavern is located within the rocky sea cliffs in southern Nälu beneath the city of Praetan. A massive sea lake pools within the cavern and when the sun outside shines through the waters and the crevices in the rock, the lake glows as if a fire had been lit within it and bathes the entire cavern in blue. This location was inspired by the Blue Grotto (Grotta Azzurra) in southern Italy. AND it is where the final scene takes place.
FFF: Wow (again) I love this so much! Thanks for this peek into the unique world of CURSE BOUND. Congrats!
JLM: Thanks for having me!
About the Author
Writing as J. L. Mbewe, Jennette is an author, artist, mother, wife, but not always in that order. Born and raised in Minnesota, she now braves the heat of Texas, but pines for the Northern Lights and the lakes of home every autumn. She loves trying to capture the abstract and make it concrete. She is currently living her second childhood with her wonderful husband and two precious children who don’t seem to mind her eclectic collections of rocks, shells, and swords, among other things. Here, between reality and dreams, you will find her busily creating worlds inhabited by all sorts of fantasy creatures and characters, all questing about and discovering true love amid lots of peril.
Her debut novel, Secrets Kept, was nominated for the 2014 Clive Staples Award. Her second novel, Darkened Hope was a semi-finalist for the 2017 Alliance Award.
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Curse Bound is coming soon! Join us as we celebrate its release on July 11th, 2019 at 7pm - 10pm CST. There will be plenty of bookish fun, games, and giveaways. AND we have special guests Kyle Robert Shultz, Lindsay A. Franklin, and Jenelle Leanne Schmidtwho will be joining us and sharing about their books.
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