Realm of Ice and Shadow
by Leigh Stratton
I am delighted to welcome Leigh Stratton to Escape With Dollycas today!
Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I grew up in a small town on the south shore of Eastern Long Island, but I recently traded in cold, damp, gray winters for the warmth and sunshine of Central Florida. I live with my husband, daughter and son-in-law, two sons, and four dogs. In addition to the two fantasy series’ I’m currently writing, I also write inspirational romantic suspense and cozy mysteries, work as a freelance editor, and homeschool my thirteen-year-old son. In my spare time, which is rare, I enjoy spending time with my family, walking (while taking pictures of scenery and wildlife), and reading.
What is the first book you remember reading?
I remember reading a picture book called So Big when I was around three. I must have read it often, because I can still remember some of the words.
What are you reading now?
I am currently reading Sarah J. Mass’s Throne of Glass series and loving it!
What books have most inspired you?
Do you have a special place where you like to write?
I most often write in my library, where I can close the door and have quiet, a typical writer’s cave. But I love taking a notebook outside to write by the pool or the garden. It’s so peaceful.
Where do the ideas for your books come from?
Everywhere! I think of ideas all the time. I can be having a conversation with someone, and all of the sudden an idea will strike. Sometimes while I’m reading or watching TV I’ll get an idea. Since I write them down on whatever is handy at the time, I often have piles of Post-it notes, receipts, even napkins with story ideas jotted on them beside my computer.
Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?
The most challenging thing for me is getting that first rough draft down on paper. Other than that, the most challenging aspect of writing is finding the time to do so.
What do you think makes a good story?
I think the most important thing is to keep it interesting, keep the plot moving forward, keep throwing hurdles up for the characters. I tend to enjoy reading and writing stories with more action.
Yikes, that’s a difficult question. I am not at all adventurous, and yet my characters tend to be. Half the things they do, I would never even dream of. I think if I had to choose one, I’d say Ryleigh. Only because she is extremely maternal toward her younger sister, Mia.
What makes your books different from others out there in this genre?
I think Realm of Ice and Shadow is a bit different because it takes place in both a medieval-style fantasy world, with swords and dragons, but some of the characters come from the modern world. Mia, Ryleigh’s younger sister, is appalled when she realizes she can’t bring her cell phone to Cymmera with her.
What’s next on the horizon for you?
My current goal is to somehow get through writing the ten or so books I have contracted over the next two years. I have two more YA fantasies due to release next year. I enjoy writing cozies, and I’m hoping to continue with all four of my current series’ as well as adding one more which I’ve begun plotting. I also write an inspirational romantic suspense series, which I’d like to continue. In addition to that, I’d love to write a YA fantasy series about the seven deadly sins.
Thank you so much for having me and for sharing the release of Realm of Ice and Shadow!
Thank you Leigh so much for visiting today!
Keep reading for more info about Realm of Ice and Shadow.
Realm of Ice and Shadow
Young Adult Fantasy
1st in Series
Level Best Books, Level Elevate (November 7, 2023)
Number of Pages 210
Digital ASIN : B0CKV9K5PG
Seventeen year old Ryleigh Donnovan is certain her life is cursed. Nothing ever goes smoothly, and her first job interview is no exception. An earthquake rocks the building, sending Ryleigh on a frantic search for her younger sister, a search which lands her in the hospital. Terrified they’ll push her for answers she can’t afford to give, Ryleigh flees with a mysterious stranger.
Jackson Maynard is about to be ordained as a Death Dealer, a warrior for the Kingdom of Cymmera, but first he must pass one more test. When he fails to acquire the human girl the prophet has chosen, he’s forced to stand trial for treason. Banished from his realm, he seeks out the girl from the vision, Ryleigh Donnovan, and together they embark on a journey to save his dying kingdom.
Great Escape Praise for Realm of Ice and Shadow
by Leigh Stratton
Realm of Ice and Shadow is a unique fantasy tale about other realms, hidden heritage, and a prophecy to save a kingdom. I really enjoyed the story, characters, setting, and the author’s writing style. I was pulled into the book and kept engaged by descriptive scenes, wonderfully written and imperfect characters, and a mystery I just had to figure out.
5 stars! Exciting and immersive fantasy with strong characters and creative world-building! Realm of Ice and Shadow is the first book in author Leigh Stratton’s suspense-filled romantic fantasy series, Kingdom of Cymmera, and I was quickly immersed, I recommend REALM OF ICE AND SHADOW to readers of suspenseful young adult fantasy, fantasy, romance, and suspenseful romantic fantasy.
~Boys’ Mom Reads!
About Leigh Stratton
Young adult and middle-grade fantasy writer Leigh Stratton is the author of the Kingdom of Cymmera series and the Ranger of the Realms series. Leigh grew up in a small town on Long Island where she spent many lazy afternoons with a good book. She would read at the beach, outside beneath a tree, anywhere she could find to curl up and lose herself in a story for a few hours. She loves reading as much now as she did back then, only now she enjoys the added pleasure of creating stories of her own.
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