I'm so pleased today to welcome author Rinda Elliott to the blog to answer a few questions about her new paranormal young adult release, Foretold. I read this one recently and absolutely adored it, the combination of romance and Norse mythology a winning one for me. I'm already counting down the days until the second installment featuring Raven's sister Coral releases in August, so I hope you guys give Foretold a try if you get the chance!
Vanir has two wolf companions that have been with him since the accident that took his parents from him and his brothers. If you could choose any animal, real or mythological, to have as a companion/spirit guide, what animal would top your list?
This question kind of stumped me—really made me think. So I was with a big group at a birthday party and asked them all to try and figure out my spirit animal. They all answered wolf, except for one who said lion—which was cool. I mean everyone wants to seem like a lion, right? The wolf is a pretty powerful, too. Strong and intelligent. It’s also supposed to be wild. I like to think I’m intelligent…but I’m really not all that wild. I like my safe, quiet spaces. I thought about all the years I collected giant panda stuffed animals and posters as a kid. So, I looked up that one. Like a bear–soft on the outside, but strong underneath. Feels the need for personal space and physical comfort. Kind of emotional yet very goal oriented and determined. Oh yeah, this one fits. Isn’t that interesting that I’d picked that one as a kid?
Vanir and Raven not only have to battle magic and myth in this story, but they also have the fight the elements when Ragnarok brings an epic snowstorm in the middle of summer. If Ragnarok were to hit our world right this moment, how prepared for survival would you say you are?
LOL. I was just going to answer, “I’m gonna die.” But that was my weird sense of humor rearing its head. I’m not stocked up on things and I don’t have a lot of personal skills in combat when things get scary. So, I’d have to learn those things. But, once the snow disappeared—and I’m assuming the Lockwood triplets will hopefully succeed—I do know how to garden. I grow a lot of my own fruits and vegetables. So, it’s possible I’d be a little more useful than I thought.
Since Foretold is written from Raven’s first person point of view, we don’t get to know what’s running through the fascinatingly complex mind of Vanir unless he gives his thoughts voice. If we happened to be in his head the moment he got his first good look at Raven, what are a few of the words we might see floating around in there?
First good look, eh? After thinking she was a boy who’d stolen his parents’ car—or so she thought. Nah, Vanir, who knows his own mind and knows what he likes, would have first been thinking “I’ve got to help this person fast.” He has such a very strong instinct to use his size, strength, and extra gifts where and when they’re needed. But, Vanir is also days before his eighteenth birthday and future leader as Odin or not, he’s also a boy who sees a girl he instantly finds intriguing. So, I imagine the words would be beautiful, interesting, different and unique, each one threaded with a strong dose of hope that she likes him just as much back.
Raven feels as though, of the three sisters, her ability is the least important given she’s too late to change any of the things her runes reference. If she could choose any other paranormal ability to have for a day, which one might she jump at the chance to try out?
I think with her working two jobs and feeling such a need to make sure everyone is taken care of, she might want the ability to clone herself. As the oldest of my siblings, I’ve wished for that one a time or two myself. ;)
What’s one interesting fact or tidbit you learned about Norse mythology during your research for Foretold that you didn’t know before?
Oh, I learned a lot. I’ve always been fascinated with Norse mythology—even before I finally found the meaning of my odd first name and learned it meant giant and comes from Norse mythology. One difficult thing—but like most other mythologies really--is that the stories change from one writing to another. Spellings change and I worried a lot about getting things just right. I’d think I had, then I would find yet another spelling or yet another thought behind who a god or goddess really was. At one point, I finally decided to go with what worked for the story. Also, this book was originally called Wyrd, The Turning because the norns were considered the wyrd sisters and “wyrd” actually means that which has turned or has become. It’s the very idea of someone or something turning into something new. These girls have grown up knowing their lives aren’t entirely their own and each approaches that knowledge differently. With Raven, she has this terrific sense of responsibility when it comes to her family, yet inside, she’s always been terrified her norn would someday erase her own personality. Anyone with control issues would understand how scary that would be. And before I take this too far off tangent, I suppose learning the true meaning of wyrd when I’d already decided on norns was pretty cool. It was sort of serendipitous.
Though Raven takes center stage in this first installment, her sisters obviously play an important role. What’s something about each of them Raven admires, and something about each of them that drives her crazy in the way only sisters can?
Raven, Coral and Kat are very much typical sisters despite all the bigger-than-life things they deal with. Raven loves that Coral can be forgiving, can be the peacemaker in the family, but she worries that Coral isn’t strong enough for what’s coming. Raven doesn’t worry about whether Kat is strong enough. Kat comes off tough. But Kat also drives Raven and for that matter, Coral, both kind of crazy because she’s not as accepting of how they’ve lived and how their mother has dealt with things. She’s got a mouth on her. But, Raven’s favorite thing about Kat is her fierce loyalty.
You suddenly find yourself experiencing a rune tempus as Raven does when the Norse goddess within her makes her presence known. When it’s over and you take a look at the runes, it’s clear they carry a message about Coral’s upcoming story, Forecast. What do the runes say?
Slightly off the top of my head here, but I think they’d say something like:
What was once myth
Nightmares brought into light
Forces that gather
Know their true birthright
Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by today Rinda!
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It is written that three Sisters of Fate have the power
to change the world's destiny.
But only if they survive…
The Lockwood triplets have had the prophecy drummed into their heads since birth. Still, Raven, the eldest of the sisters, can't believe it's really happening. She's the reincarnation of a Norse goddess? One of the sisters is destined to die? When it starts snowing in summer in Florida, the sisters fear the worst has come to pass. Ragnarok, the Norse end of the world, has begun.
Raven finds herself the secret protector of Vanir, a boy with two wolves, a knowledge of Norse magic and a sense of destiny he can't quite explain. He's intense, sexy and equally determined to save her when it becomes clear someone is endangering them. Raven doesn't know if getting closer to him will make a difference in the coming battle, but her heart isn't giving her a choice.
Ahead of the sisters is the possibility of death at the hand of a warrior, death by snow, death by water or death by fire.
Or even from something else…
Sisters of Fate
The prophecy doesn't lie: one is doomed to die.
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Photo: Kathryn Moad Photography
I love unusual stories and credit growing up in a family of curious life-lovers who moved all over the country. Books and movies full of fantasy, science fiction and romance kept us amused, especially in some of the stranger places. For years, I tried to separate my darker side with my humorous and romantic one. I published short fiction, but things really started happening when I gave in and mixed it up. When not lost in fiction, I love making wine, collecting music, gaming and spending time with my husband and two children.