With Morgan Rhodes latest, A Book of Spirits and Thieves, she brings the magic of Mytica into our present day world. We follow the story through two modern points of view as well as one from Mytica, 1000 years prior to the events of the Falling Kingdoms series. Not only was it incredibly interesting to incorporate a modern element into this well known and loved fantasy series it also gave me further insight into Mytica prior to what we’ve already read.
After reading ABoSaT I felt that even new readers would be able to jump in and read it prior to the Falling Kingdoms series. Was it difficult for you to make it tie into the original series so well yet be assessable for new readers?
Thanks! I must give credit to my editor for this. Originally, I had imagined the “fantasy world” in ABOSAT to be that of King Arthur. Then my editor said “what if it’s Mytica?” And – BAM – the exact way to tie the two series together, yet still keep them separate, came to me; a way to bring more clarity to the myths and legends told in Falling Kingdoms by seeing these legends play out on the page, yet not infringe on the plot and characters in the original series.
I absolutely loved seeing bits of Mytica brought into a modern setting. What benefits or struggles did you face in overlapping the worlds?
My main challenge when writing ABOSAT’s “modern day” chapters was to keep it from coming off like a cheesy “door to another world” story where anyone could use this magic to travel to Mytica and check things out. I knew the rules for this magic had to be very specific. I did know from the beginning how I wanted everything to tie together in the end, but unraveling the method to get to that end was the challenge. I tend to write complicated mythology and I wanted to make this as clean and simple as possible.
For this book you’ve introduced a wonderful group of characters: Maddox, Farrell and Crys, each had chapters told from their point of view. Of the new characters who was the most difficult to write?
Surprisingly, to me, the most difficult character to write was Crys. As a modern-day teen who discovers dangerous secrets that exist all around her, I struggled to keep her from being an character who just learns information for the benefit of the reader. I ended up writing her chapters in first person to really get deeper into her head, then I rewrote them in third to match the other characters. Maddox was a character who was easy to write – it’s like he always existed for me. And Farrell… well, it’s always fun to write the bad boy.
Farrell and his family are involved with a secret society – did you do any research to help aid you in creating a realistic depiction to what that might be like?
I did lots of online research about secret societies, such as the Illuminati, the Freemasons, Skull and Bones, and others. I also tried to steer away from expected/clichéd secret society behavior as seen in movies and TV shows when it came to their meeting place and society motivations.
I’m so excited that the ending of ABoSaT allows for more books with these characters. How many have you planned for? What can we expect next?
I’m excited too!! There are three books planned and I’m currently writing book two, which will be out next June. In book two, Becca’s POV is added to the mix, and we will also meet a dangerous, magical character who could control the fate of both our world and that of Mytica. Also, both “spirits” and “thieves” continue to play a very large role in this series in new ways!
About the Book
A Book of Spirits and Thieves releases today from Razorbill
Modern-day sisters discover deadly ancient magic in book 1 of this Falling Kingdoms spin-off series!
Worlds collide in this suspenseful, page-turning Falling Kingdoms spin-off series, which explores a whole new side of Mytica—and an even darker version of its magic.
Crystal Hatcher, Modern-day Toronto: It’s a normal afternoon in her mother’s antique bookshop when Crys witnesses the unthinkable: her little sister Becca collapses into a coma after becoming mesmerized by a mysterious book written in an unrecognizable language.
Maddox Corso, Ancient Mytica: Maddox Corso doesn’t think much of it when he spots an unfamiliar girl in his small village. Until, that is, he realizes that she is a spirit, and he is the only one who can see or hear her. Her name is Becca Hatcher, and she needs Maddox to help get her home.
Farrell Grayson, Modern-day Toronto: Rich and aimless Farrell Grayson is thrilled when the mysterious leader of the ultra-secret Hawkspear Society invites him into the fold. But when he learns exactly what he has to do to prove himself, Farrell starts to question everything he thought he knew about family, loyalty, and himself….
Fate has brought these young people together, but ancient magic threatens to rip them apart.
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