Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Fantasy - Then and Now: A Guest Post by Tara Tyler

Split Infinity (Apprentice Adept Book 1) by [Anthony, Piers]
Today, you're in for a special treat.  Instead of listening to me whine about being a slow writer, you get to hear from Tara Tyler, who's about to launch the second book in her Broken Branch Falls series.

Take it away, Tara!

Thanks so much for having me, Ken. Love the name of your blog (Hogwarts Sabbatical)! And thanks to everyone for stopping by.

I've been reading fantasy books forever! When I was a "young adult," Piers Anthony was my favorite author and SPLIT INFINITY with a black unicorn crossing swords with a guy on the cover was the first book that sparked my love for reading. One of the crowning moments in my career (so far) was to be included in an anthology with my first favorite author!! (in CHRONOLOGY) But fantasy has come a long way since then...


I'm pretty thrilled with some of the fantasy movies of late - especially the HOBBIT series, another favorite from my youth. One of the few books I was forced to read that I actually enjoyed (along with Jane Eyre, but that's another story) Back then, the majority of traditional fantasy books took you away to a completely new world, with legendary creatures and usually a few humans. Epic Fantasy was incredible when done right, besides Tolkien, there's Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time, Donaldson's Thomas Covenant series, Terry Brooks, and Anne McCaffrey just to name a few more of my faves.

The 13th Floor Complete Collection by [Rains, Christine]Then came the newer fantasy trends. These new books cross genres and bring magic and fantastical creatures into our realistic, modern world. Sure, vampires and werewolves and ghosts have been around for a long time, but today's authors have taken these paranormal creatures a step further by hiding them out in the open among regular humans, like the Twilight series and of course, Harry Potter and Percy Jackson. Have you heard about the new movie coming out soon, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children based on the book by Ransom Riggs? Looks pretty incredible! Reminds me of X-men and their school for mutants, but isn't that sci fi? Or super hero? Things keep getting mixed up! Other new fantasy raves - the mysterious, magical Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and Christine Rains' thrilling paranormal 13th Floor series.

Effigy (The Coileáin Chronicles Book 1) by [Fifield, M.J.]Genre lines are crossing more and more all the time. Writers are mashing up traditional themes coming up with new and exciting story lines. Even with historical - Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies... ugh! But they did it and some folks thought it was pretty good. We're opening our minds and broadening our scopes. No more limitations on imagination! My own series stars teen beasts in high school who don't believe in humans!

But don't worry, there are still traditional epic fantasy series. Game of Thrones is one of my newer faves. And I'm patiently waiting for MJ Fifield to get the second book in her series done because I so thoroughly enjoyed the tortured queen and her determination in the first! Effigy (The Coileáin Chronicles)

So whether you prefer traditional or new age fantasy, there's something for everyone's tastes and always new options to try!

What was your first favorite book?
What changes have you noticed in Fantasy?
Do you prefer traditional or new age?

    by Tara Tyler
    Publication Date: December 1, 2016

    Welcome to the forest.
    Gabe and his girlfriend Ona are headed in opposite directions for Spring Break. After finding out humans might be a real part of their history, Ona is determined to dig up evidence of them in the mysterious mountains at Camp Cradle Rock. Being a logical goblin, Gabe tries to talk her out of it, but there's just no reasoning with a stubborn ogress.

    When Ona goes missing, Gabe and his friends fly to Cradle Rock to search for her and discover a village of trouble, igniting an age old war. His physical skills may be lacking, but Gabe won't give up. With the help of his diverse group of friends, he will find a way to save his girl and maybe all beastkind. Humans, bah!

    Add to your Reading List on Goodreads!


    Tara Tyler has had a hand in everything from waitressing to rocket engineering. After moving all over, she now writes and teaches math in Ohio with her three active boys and Coach Husband. Currently she has two series, Pop Travel (techno-thriller detective capers) and Broken Branch Falls (fantasy adventures). To squeeze in writing, she economizes her time aka the Lazy Housewife. Make every day an adventure!

    Talk to me!
    Author Blog ~~ @taratylertalks ~~ Facebook ~~ Housewives Blog


    1. Great post, Tara. Your exploration of the Fantasy genre was particularly useful with the IWSG competition coming up. Congratulations on Cradle Rock. Wishing you much success.

      1. Well that worked out quite nicely! And thank you!

    2. I read Sword of Shannara when I was a young teen and it blew me away.
      I second what Nicola said - this year's IWSG anthology theme is right up your alley.

      1. Yes, loved the Shannara books =)
        And I hope my entry is ready in time - going with low fantasy...

    3. Both Piers Anthony and Terry Brooks had a big influence on me. Especially Anthony, who infused so many of his stories with humor.

      Thanks for guest posting today, Tara.

      1. Love humor in my books - I use it too =D
        Thanks for having me, Ken!

    4. Piers Anthony was one of my favorite authors when I was a teen. But then he started writing books where teenage girls would sleep with adult males and complain that age of consent laws were holding back true love. Too creepy for me. I haven't read his work since. :(

      1. I know what you mean. I kind of stopped reading some of his books when his middle grade aged characters started falling in love with each other.

      2. I agree, some of his stuff got strange...

    5. I read like 15 Xanth novels over the span of one summer. I even have a couple of typed up responses to fan letters I wrote Piers Anthony. Yeah, you could say he's been an influence in my life. Terry Brooks too, though I actually haven't read his Shannara series beyond the first book. I adore his Landover series, though, and gobbled those up as quick as I could. He actually replied with a handwritten letter! I <3 fantasy.

      1. Yay Loni! I loved Landover too! I lived in Florida, so I especially loved the maps! Fantasy is fun =)

    6. I like the paranormal crossover. So much so I'm writing it now.

      I had many favorites as a child, but the first adult book I remember was The White Dragon. It was so neat that it was dragons like fantasy but in a science fiction setting.

    7. Great post Tara. Impressive fantasy list. I love the fact that the elements are mixing more now. Everyone you named I read too.
      Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

    8. Ken have you ever visited the Pottermore Shop? On that site you can be sorted into a house, find your wand and your patronus. My Hogwarts house is Ravenclaw, my wand Silver Lime wood with a Unicorn hair core 10" and Slightly Yielding flexibility, my patronus a Blackbird, and my Ilvermorny House The Great North American School of Wizardry is Thunderbird

      Here is a link. Joining is free and then you can explore. I thought this so cool. I immediately thought of you. Discover your patronus here

      Juneta @ Writer's Gambit


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