BLOG TOUR: The Raven Heir by Stephanie Burgis
Hello, and welcome to my stop on The Raven Heir blog tour! Firstly I’d like to say a huge thank you to Blue from Kaleidoscopic Tours for organising this blog tour, and to Bloomsbury Children’s for sending me a copy of The Raven Heir for review. Expect to see that post going up in a couple of weeks.
To start off, I’m going to share the cover and synopsis of The Raven Heir, before I pass you over to Stephanie Burgis herself for a lovely guest post.
Cordelia and her triplets Rosalind and Giles have lived safely in the castle at the centre of the forest all their lives, protected by the spells their mother has woven. The only time Cordelia feels truly free is when she turns into a dragonfly or a blackbird and can fly beyond the great stone walls. But then one day the outside world comes to them. Two rival dukes and their soldiers have come for the triplets – because whoever is the eldest is the heir to the throne.
But their mother knows that since the Raven Crown was broken, no one has been able to rule the kingdom of Corvenne and live, and she will not give up any of her children to that death sentence. When she refuses to reveal which child is the eldest, she is taken prisoner, and Cordelia and her brother and sister find themselves on the run in a dangerous new world. And as they set out across Corvenne to rescue their mother, Cordelia begins to see that there is a deep magic at work, driving her towards a destiny that could tear her family apart, take away her freedom forever or, just maybe, heal a kingdom devastated by a war that has raged for generations.
As soon as I read the synopsis I knew I needed to get involved in this blog tour. It sounds like this is going to be a darker and deadlier version of the A Pinch of Magic series by Michelle Harrison, and I’m so excited to read it!
Now it’s time for me to pass you over to Stephanie herself…
I live surrounded by castles, here in Wales. What better inspiration could anyone have? They’re gorgeous and crumbling and full of old stories: tragedies, triumphs and the haunting echoes of old battles. My family’s favourite local castle is the same one where a young Henry VII once stood on the ramparts and watched his own family’s soldiers attack, battling against his official ‘guardian’ – a nicer word than gaoler – to try to get him back.
I was stunned, when I first started researching the Wars of the Roses, to realise just how many of the major players – as their claims to the throne were fought over in vicious, bloody battles – were actually children at the time. Kids of eleven or twelve were being shaken awake at night and bundled, in disguise, on to the backs of horses for perilous midnight races across the darkened countryside, fleeing would-be kidnappers or assassins because their families were at war again… and again, and again, and again! They were just the latest pawns in a constant, adult struggle over the throne.
What would it feel like to be one of those children – officially the rightful king or queen, but unofficially helpless and in constant danger? As a fantasy author, I was driven to reimagine it in a different, vividly magical, setting: my own fictional kingdom of Corvenne, which has been wracked by a similar series of wars over the throne ever since the ancient Raven Crown was broken.
In The Raven Heir, my heroine’s mother has tried to save her own children from those endless battles by hiding them away in an enchanted forest for the first twelve years of their lives. When those enchantments are finally broken, though, Cordelia’s mother and half-brother are both kidnapped by invading dukes, while Cordelia and her triplets are forced to flee. Now they’re alone in their forest with two horrible new realisations: One of them (but they don’t know who!) is officially the new Raven Queen or King… and no one can survive the Raven throne for long.
Luckily, all three triplets have their own kinds of magic. Even more importantly, they still have each other… and I hope you’ll enjoy riding along with all three of them as they set out on an epic quest to save their family and heal a broken kingdom.
We could all do with some healing right now, couldn’t we?
Thank you so much, Steph, for writing such an inspirational guest post for me to share. I’m now finding myself more interested in British history than I’ve ever been before! Who knew something like the War of the Roses could inspire such a compelling fantasy middle grade?
About the author:
Stephanie Burgis lives in Wales with her husband, their two sons and their tabby cat, surrounded by mountains and castles. She writes fun MG fantasy adventures, most recently the Dragon With a Chocolate Heart trilogy and The Raven Heir.
Thank you so much for visiting my stop on The Raven Heir blog tour. Make sure to visit the other stops from earlier in the week (you can find them in the tour header at the top of this post!) and don’t forget to visit Sabrina for her stop tomorrow.
See you again soon,