Monday, September 12, 2011

Guest author Elisabeth Naughton + giveaway

Please welcome author 

Elisabeth Naughton

Thanks so much to Laurie for inviting me to stop by during my TEMPTED blog tour! TEMPTED, the third book in the Eternal Guardians Series, released last week and I’m thrilled readers are enjoying it so much. Readers first met the heroine, Isadora, in books one and two in the series – MARKED & ENTWINED. Over the past year I’ve had several emails from fans telling me they didn’t know what to think of Isadora at first. She’s nearly 300 years old, yet she acts like a child in many ways. She’s timid, she’s mousy, she’s afraid of the Eternal Guardians, and everyone in the kingdom knows she’ll make a horrible queen when her father (the king) eventually dies. How on earth could she make a good heroine?

Enter the job of the author—to make you fall in love with a character you are sure you’ll never “get”. Isadora’s transformation makes her unique in this series. In MARKED she has no backbone. She lets everyone walk all over her. In ENTWINED she grows a little bolder, but that boldness comes off as abrasive as she attempts to flex her muscles. It isn’t until TEMPTED that she comes into her own and realizes what she’s capable of. And watching her finally live up to her potential…well, that’s one of my favorite parts of the book.

Not all heroines are “kick-ass” in the traditional sense of the words. Sometimes, they can’t be. Isadora was raised in a patriarchal society, by a father who only ever wanted a son and ended up with her. She’s been taught that women are inferior, that men hold the power and that her opinion doesn’t count. She’s been cloistered her whole life, and her father’s been trying to marry her off to a Guardian for as long as she can remember, to ensure that she won’t rule when he dies. It makes sense she’d be mousy and shy. But she doesn’t stay that way. And even though her character arc doesn’t turn her into a “kick-ass” heroine with blades swinging and guns blazing who decapitates daemons like the Eternal Guardians, that doesn’t mean she isn’t as strong—maybe even stronger—than they are.  There’s a saying that behind every great man there’s an even greater woman. That’s never been truer than it is in TEMPTED with Isadora.

I believe in staying true to a character and letting their growth happen organically. I knew from page one of MARKED that Isadora was never going to be a “kick-ass” heroine like so many readers expect. It wouldn’t have made sense to her character arc and readers wouldn’t have believed that sort of change in her. That doesn’t mean I’m opposed to kick-ass heroines (on the contrary…the heroine in ENRAPTURED, book 4, is, by definition, a serious kick-ass heroine in every sense of the word). I love a good tough girl as much as the rest. But sometimes toughness comes in unexpected ways. Sometimes it comes in leadership and standing up for what’s right. And sometimes it comes in not being afraid of your destiny and finally living up to who you were meant to be. In that way, Isadora’s as kick-ass as the rest.

To celebrate the release of TEMPTED, Sourcebooks is giving away two copies of the book! (US/Canada shipping only). To be entered, leave me a note telling me what your favorite type of heroine is.

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