The Fire Queen is coming out one month from tomorrow! So I’m thrilled to have author Emily R. King here on the blog today to celebrate and chat about this breathtaking new book in her The Hundredth Queen series.
About the Book
Title: The Fire Queen
Author: Emily R. King
Pub. Date: September 26, 2017
In the second book in The Hundredth Queen Series, Emily R. King once again follows a young warrior queen’s rise to meet her destiny in a richly imagined world of sorcery and forbidden powers.
Though the tyrant rajah she was forced to marry is dead, Kalinda’s troubles are far from over. A warlord has invaded the imperial city, and now she’s in exile. But she isn’t alone. Kalinda has the allegiance of Captain Deven Naik, her guard and beloved, imprisoned for treason and stripped of command. With the empire at war, their best hope is to find Prince Ashwin, the rajah’s son, who has promised Deven’s freedom on one condition: that Kalinda will fight and defeat three formidable opponents.
But as Kalinda’s tournament strengths are once again challenged, so too is her relationship with Deven. While Deven fears her powers, Ashwin reveres them—as well as the courageous woman who wields them. Kalinda comes to regard Ashwin as the only man who can repair a warring world and finds herself torn between her allegiance to Deven and a newly found respect for the young prince.
With both the responsibility to protect her people and the fate of those she loves weighing heavily upon her, Kalinda is forced again to compete. She must test the limits of her fire powers and her hard-won wisdom. But will that be enough to unite the empire without sacrificing all she holds dear?
Interview with Emily R. King
Can you describe The Fire Queen for us in five emojis?
Hahaha. That was fun
A lot of authors talk about how difficult it is to write a second book. Your publishing experience was a bit different than most author’s in that you were able to completely finish writing book two before book one was even out. Do you feel like that made writing The Fire Queen any easier or more difficult for you?
I think writing my book two right away made the process easier. Often the issue authors run into while writing their first book after they debut is the pressure of living up to readers’ expectations. They are never completely alone with their work again. Depending on the writer’s editor or agent, they may go through several rounds of revisions on a synopsis before even drafting. Everyone responds to criticism differently, but it can be especially difficult to navigate a critique when an idea is still at the concept stage. Writers tend to become enamored with bright, shiny new ideas, so to have someone criticize their brilliant idea and accept that critique takes practice. I never had this issue with my book two, as you said, because I wrote it so quickly. I did, however, go through these growing pains with my book three.
Having all three books in a series out in less than a year seems like it must be pretty intense! Can you tell us what your writing process is like and how you’re able to write so quickly?
Writing is like anything else. If it’s important to you, you’ll make time for it. It was important to my publisher to release the books close together. Readers are tired of waiting years between books. We’ve seen less and less trilogies bought by publishers lately. Duologies are more common now because it’s so hard to bring readers back for a third book three years or more after the first one released. I love that readers will have three of my books so close together, but it is hard on writers. I spent a lot of time at my keyboard this past year. But as I said, it was important to get it done, and with my family and friends pitching in, I did.
There are some amazing new characters in The Fire Queen. Can you give us a little teaser about your favorite new character and what readers might expect to see from them in this novel?
Oh, I’m so glad you like them! Hmm…I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but I’d have to say one of my favorite new characters is Indah from the Southern Isles. Indah is inquisitive and frank, but also clever and sympathetic. She is one of my favorite women from the whole series, probably because I know so many women like her who get things done but aren’t bitches about it. Pardon my language, but often successful women are called that, even though they aren’t any tougher than their male counterparts. Indah is definitely not a B-word. She is driven, determined, and respectful, but she doesn’t take crap from anyone. She’s one well-rounded lady.
If you could possess one of the bhuta powers, which one would you choose and why?
I think I’d be a Galer, bhutas who can control the skies. That way if I wanted to stay home and read all day, I could summon storm clouds and listen to the rain on the roof. I’d be totally selfish about the weather.
There were so many things about The Hundredth Queen that I absolutely loved, but above anything else, I was so enamored with the incredible women depicted in that story. They were such tremendous examples of strength, femininity, and sisterhood. I am so thrilled to say that there are even more incredible female characters in The Fire Queen, and I am absolutely inspired by each of them in different ways.
One of the things I most enjoyed about this book was getting to see more of the bhuta powers on display. At the heart of this series is a fascinating, elemental-based magic system, and there are some really fantastic scenes in this book where that magic comes into play to create some truly stunning imagery.
It was very apparent that Emily was really enjoying herself while writing this, because despite the dire situations the characters find themselves in, there’s this undercurrent of fun that runs throughout and makes the story an absolute delight to read.
The plot in this book is fast-paced and high-stakes. It perfectly transitions the story from book one into the epic finale I imagine is coming in book three. If you enjoyed the tournament elements of The Hundredth Queen, then you certainly won’t be disappointed with The Fire Queen.
The romantic tension between Kalinda and Captain Deven Naik continues to simmer throughout this story. We even get to read through Deven’s perspective through some of this novel, which not only sheds more light on the circumstances Kali and Deven find themselves in but also shows us more of Deven’s character and motivations.
Another element of the story that I found highly entertaining was that we get to see more of the empire in this book, as well as individuals from many of its different regions. The setting was beautiful and exuded magic. It also added some really interesting conflicts for the characters to overcome.
So often in second books, we see main characters who become plagued by self doubt when things go awry. And while there are so many different elements in this story that make Kali question her purpose and her goals, she steadfastly believes in her own strength, and I think that was the thing that I loved above all else in this story.
I am so in awe the way that Emily writes female characters. Reading these novels truly is like a lesson in sisterhood, and I cannot wait to read the next book in this beautiful series.
Pre-Order Your Signed Copy!
The launch party will be at my favorite local indie bookshop The King’s English Bookshop on September 26th at 7:00 PM! Which means, you can pre-order your signed copy by clicking on the book cover below! Be sure to mention in the comments that you would like your copy signed during the event!
About Emily R. King
From Emily’s Website
Emily R. King is a reader of everything and a writer of fantasy. Born in Canada and raised in the USA, she has perfected the use of “eh” and “y’all” and uses both interchangeably. Shark advocate, consumer of gummy bears, and islander at heart, Emily’s greatest interests are her four children. She’s a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and an active participant in her local writers’ community. She lives in Northern Utah with her family and their cantankerous cat.
Have you read The Hundredth Queen yet? Are you excited to get your hands on a copy of The Fire Queen? If you could have one elemental power, which one would you chose?