Are you ready to continue the release week fun of Guardian of Ajalon?
I hope so because I’m thrilled to be interviewing Joan, the author of The Poison Tree Path Chronicles, once again. (If you would like to see our other interviews in conjunction with the releases of books one and two, click HERE and HERE.)
If you’re interested in hearing more about her feelings on wrapping up the series, where she would want to visit, and overall fun, be prepared because that’s exactly what we’re chatting about!
Pull up a comfy chair and grab a warm drink to join Joan and I as we chat today. 🙂
About the Book
The long way home . . .
The poison tree path is Shara’s road home. . .if she and her companions can survive the journey. In the danger and darkness of the forest, the only respite she finds is in the story unlocked in the Old Tongue book. In this vivid world, Shara finally discovers what she has longed for all her life: the key to the secrets of her past. Yet time is running out for Shara—and all of Tirragyl—as Lord Lucian, King Alexor, and the royal army attack the Guardian Grotto to claim the powerful Guardian Rock.
Unwilling to sit idly by as her kingdom is destroyed, Queen Nyla leaves her hiding place to recruit a most unlikely army—the Charab. But how can she win over the infamous assassins who have been oppressed by her family for generations?
– Hi Joan! It is such a pleasure to have you back on Unicorn Quester! It’s thrilling and exciting to know that The Poison Tree Path Chronicles conclusion has officially released. How does it feel wrapping up this excellent fantasy series?
Thanks for hosting me again Laura – it’s always such fun chatting to you.
I’m quietly excited to have the final book of the series out in the world. It’s been a long writing and publishing journey, so this is a very remarkable moment for me personally. I also can’t wait to hear my readers’ reaction to Guardian of Ajalon, which is—without doubt—the very heart of the trilogy.
– I love that! Quietly excited (though I’m over here squealing that it’s officially released *winks*). I have to confess that I was unsure what kind of ending these precious characters would get. *hides* Things were looking pretty bleak in book two, but I’m thankful their story didn’t end there! Was there any character’s journey who surprised you in Guardian of Ajalon?
One of my favorite story-line elements in the book is when Queen Nyla tries to recruit the Charab people to fight for her. The Charab have been oppressed by Nyla’s family for generations, so initially it’s rather touch-and-go whether they will take up her cause or possibly just kill her! That thrills me as a writer, when characters from completely different backgrounds and viewpoints come together and recognize in each other something unexpected and good. It’s the kind of reconciliation I see playing out in my country, South Africa, too.
– Yes! That was such a powerful aspect of the story and hadn’t fully realized how powerful it was until you mentioned it. We recently talked on Facebook about forming a fan club for Nicho. (He is just so amazing!) How do you think he would react if we really formed one in his honor? 😉
I think he’d be a little embarrassed, although also secretly pleased (because which one of us wouldn’t be?). But I can’t imagine he’d like the fame or attention from fawning girls. Nicho is quite the introvert and prefers being with the horses he loves, or a close circle of friends. Oh, and Shara would be too jealous, so we might have to put the fan club thing on hold. 🙂
– Haha! I think this really reflects Nicho! Plus, no way would I want Shara to be jealous as she is just as amazing. If you could experience one thing from your series, whether it was speaking to a certain character or visiting a certain place, what would you choose and why?
I would love to walk in the Wild Garden of Ajalon. It’s this magical place filled with the sound of rushing water and birdsong, and the sweet perfume of flowers. The garden is home to many incredible animals, the likes of which we’ve never seen, and because they all live in harmony with each other, they aren’t afraid of humans. The moment you step into the Wild Garden, your worries and regrets begin to slip away, and this deep peace settles over you. I’ve had so much on my mind lately that I think a few moments in that garden every day is just what I need.
– Yessss! May I please join you? 😉 Some moments in your novel get pretty intense (though I won’t share how due to spoilers). Did you ever find yourself on edge, waiting for the next moment to unfold even though you knew what was coming?
Yes, I was a little on edge, especially as the story in the Old Tongue book unfolds. There was a part of me that wanted to write a completely different outcome, to find a different way to put right what the Old Magic curse had wrought on Tirragyl.
Another thing that made me feel anxious was the battle scenes, especially because the characters we love were very much on the weaker side. Even as their creator, you know you can’t save them all. I honestly didn’t like writing those scenes.
– Oh. Man. Reading the story of the Old Tongue was SO moving!! I will also on edge during the battle. Lastly, do you think would ever write a spinoff novella of these main characters? (I’m not sure I’m ready to say goodbye!)
That’s a great idea! I’ve never thought of doing it because to me their stories have always felt pretty complete, but I guess it could be fun to re-visit them and see what they’re all up to now. Wow Laura, you’ve got my head working on that now…
– Eeeekk! Definitely let me know if you decide to write it as I would LOVE to read it! 😀 Thanks so much for chatting with me, Joan, and hope readers will enjoy this series as much as I did!
About the Author
Joan Campbell is notoriously bad at finishing things but, ever since she found the key to the portal, she’s been escaping into worlds far more intriguing than her own. In her word-spun worlds, magic can be harnessed, kings and queens rule supreme and ancient books contain coveted secrets. Her characters face division, danger, their own fallible natures and—ultimately—grace. While her husband and two daughters have learned to fend for themselves, a hungry whine or meow inevitably breaks the spell and brings Joan back to her everyday life in Johannesburg, South Africa. Here Joan wields a tennis racket instead of a longbow and trains writers instead of warriors, knowing full well that the pen is mightier than the sword. Chains of Gwyndorr was a gold medallist in the 2017 Illumination Book Awards.