Google+ Reading Teen: [Indie Spotlight] The Coven: Fire and Ice

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

[Indie Spotlight] The Coven: Fire and Ice


After her clique's bullying causes a classmate’s suicide, Kat Grey trades the vicious world of the California “in crowd” for the chance to become a better person in Massachusetts. But when she steps in to protect a classmate from being bullied, Kat sparks a war with Hannah, Milton Academy’s resident Queen Bee.

Kat’s courage and compassion attract the attention of Blaze Ward, Hannah’s ex-boyfriend. As they fall in love, Kat discovers that Blaze is more than the boy next door. He’s a warlock. He is also the leader of an in-crowd like no other – the Brotherhood, five young warlocks charged with defending witches and humanity from a demonic adversary named Seth.
Kat challenges Blaze to become a better man and leader while he helps her find redemption as she makes it her mission to stop bullying at Milton. But when Hannah teams up with Seth to destroy her, Kat becomes a hostage in the age-old war between the Brotherhood and their greatest enemy. Saving Kat will require more than Blaze’s strength and skill; it will mean breaking one of his kind’s most sacred laws. Blaze will have to make a choice: his honor or Kat’s life.

This is an interview with Maximilian “Blaze” Ward, the hero of my novel The Coven: Fire and Ice. Blaze is a warlock and is the leader of the Brotherhood, five young warlocks charged with defending witches and humanity from a demonic adversary named Seth.  Blaze falls head over heels in love with Kat Grey, a ballsy gal with a smart mouth and a few demons of her own.

Enjoy!

First of all, why do they call you ‘Blaze’? Kind of an odd nickname.
You sound like my girlfriend Kat. It’s because of my speed – I’m faster than the speed of light. That’s my special power. I’m also a wide receiver on my school’s football team. 

Boxers or briefs?
Wouldn’t you like to know. 

What is your favorite book?
 Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley. When I read it in English lit, it wasn’t at all what I was expecting. I mean, yeah, there’s a monster in it, but it’s not a horror story at all. It has a lot of themes, but what I got from it was the importance of knowing what the limits of your power are. I think it has a lot of parallels for using magic and witchcraft. Just because you can cast a spell doesn’t necessarily mean you should.  We witches and warlocks can grow to be extremely powerful, but we can be twisted by that power if we aren’t careful. It can destroy everything that’s precious to us. It’s an important lesson that we all have to learn. I think that’s why I liked the book so much. 

What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
Kat knows how much I love to draw, so she gave me a sketchbook once. But at the top of each page, she had written suggestions for what to draw, things that really challenged my skill or stuff I wouldn’t have thought of. My girl is thoughtful like that.
Also, I don’t know how she did it, but Kat managed to get me an autographed game ball from Tom Brady for my birthday. I almost died when I opened it.

Which Brother would win in fight with no magic?
Me, obviously. Etienne is strong but he’s stupid too, so…

What’s the most fascinating place you’ve visited?
Hands down, Cambodia. It’s a really amazing country and the people are so friendly. My family and I got to tour Angkor Wat. It was incredible. Kat’s never been, so I hope to take her one day to see it.

Where do you dream of traveling to and why?
There aren’t a lot of places I haven’t visited but Machu Picchu is high on the list. It’s one of the wonders of the world, plus it’s really challenging to get to. And there’s nothing I like more than a challenge.

Do you have a recurring nightmare or dream?
Actually, we don’t dream like humans. Ours are more like visions, and they usually foretell the future or solve some sort of problem that we’re wrestling with. 

What’s your favorite spell?
The cloning spell that I created. It basically splits the caster into several copies of himself or herself. It’s great for when the Brotherhood needs to cover a lot of ground, but it takes a lot of energy to maintain. My dad was impressed with it, so you know it was badass. 

Who is your best friend?
It would definitely be Q [Quintavius Grier]. He’s a super genius and he’s my right hand man. I can talk to that guy about anything. You would think someone that smart would be weird and awkward but he’s the coolest dude I know. 

If you could apologize to someone in your past, who would it be?
[Sighs deeply] It would be Anna Thomas. She’s a girl I couldn’t save from Dark Ones when I first became a Brother. They ambushed her one night while she was running. I heard her screams because I was out on patrol near where she was, but I didn’t make it in time. I think of her almost every day. I was depressed for weeks after it happened, but I vowed she’d be the first and the last one they took without a fight. 

If you could meet one historical figure, who would it be?
Nobody famous. It would be my great, great grandfather, Sherman Ward. He was a ‘station master’ on the Underground Railroad. He hid runaway slaves in his barn and his house as they escaped to Canada.  

What is your most prized possession? 
Definitely my black stallion Baltazar.

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I love musicals. Please don’t tell Etienne or Sebastian. The Montgomery brothers have big mouths.


This is an interview with Katherine “Kat” Grey, the heroine of my novel The Coven: Fire and Ice and human love of Maximilian “Blaze” Ward. Deeply affected by the suicide of a girl she once bullied, Kat turns her life around and vows to become a better person. She takes a stand against bullying and is not afraid to fight for what she believes in.  
Enjoy!

What is your family like?
My parents are Claire McDonough and Nicholas Grey. They divorced when I was younger. I’m super lucky because they still get along really well. A lot of my old friends in Cali have divorced parents that hate each other. I’m glad mine aren’t like that.
My mom is wise, warm, funny, and a terrible cook. After she and Dad divorced, she moved to Massachusetts and pursued her dream of becoming an artist. She’s pretty successful and her paintings are really amazing. It was a little awkward at first when I moved in with her, but now we‘re super close. I’m glad she’s in my life now – I can talk to her about anything.
I miss my dad Nick like crazy since I moved to Massachusetts. To a lot of people, he can be downright intimidating – big time lawyer, Harvard grad, dyed-in-the-wool Republican. It’s funny to me because I know him as this goofy guy who loves practical jokes and fishing. He can be a little overprotective at times, but I guess that’s what dads do.

What is the thing you are most proud of?
The GED tutoring program I started at Mercy House. Mercy House is a home for runaways, mostly abused teenage girls who got mixed up in drugs and prostitution. My friend Bronwyn and Q [a member of the Brotherhood] tutors there too, as well as some other kids from Milton Academy. The first group of girls I worked with all just earned their GEDs last week – that was an incredible feeling.

If you had a day to do anything you wanted, what would you do?
Riding horses with Blaze at his family’s lake house. It’s the most peaceful place in the world. I always ride Ariel, a gray Arabian.  Blaze has a black stallion named Baltazar. Blaze has had Baltazar since he was a foal and they’ve literally grown up together – it’s really sweet.

If you could apologize to someone in your past, who would it be?
Too many to count. I hurt a lot of people back in California by being a bully. I’ve been able to get in touch with some of them on Facebook and stuff, but some people won’t respond to my messages. I don’t blame them; I’d probably be skeptical too if I was in their shoes.

What is your most prized possession? 
My talisman* that Blaze gave me. It’s a gold necklace with rubies. It’s really extravagant so I mostly just wear the main ruby on a plain gold chain. I never take it off, because it makes me feel close to Blaze. That’s because the ruby carries his essence – he’s never far away from me when I have it on.

What do you find really grates on your nerves?
Stuck up, pretentious people who think that they are better than everyone else. Don’t get me started.

What is your greatest fear?
I’ve got two. The first is Blaze getting hurt – or worse – fighting in the Brotherhood. It’s something I have to deal with on a daily basis and I try really hard not to think about it too much. He’s a great fighter, but I still obviously get worried. My second greatest fear is not living a meaningful life. I think it would be terrible to die without having made at least one person’s life better. 

*In the world of The Coven, a talisman is a piece of jewelry, featuring a jewel that contains the warlock’s essence, that a warlock often gives to the woman he loves, be she human or witch. When the woman wears the talisman, the warlock can sense her emotions, be alerted if she is in danger, communicate with her telepathically, and envelop her in a magical defensive shield even when he is not physically present

Bio
Verdell Walker is the author of THE COVEN series. Born and raised in the South, writing has been her escape from reality for many years.

Verdell is an avid sports fan and absolutely devoted to the Green Bay Packers. A gifted cook and baker, few things make her happier than making a meal for her family and friends. Her other great passion is belly dance – she’s been dancing for 5 years!



Read an excerpt from FIRE AND ICE!

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