OH HOW THE WINDS DOTH BLOW!
Hale and well met me hearties! The seasons are changing as THE WHIMSICAL HERALD sets a course into the uncharted waters of paranormal YA and Voodoo magic-the infamous city of New Orleans is our destination! We will be seated at the captain’s table with our guest of honor the original and inspiring Author Janet Post to discuss her latest release from Tell-Tale Publishing, ”VOODOO CHILD’, written with her award-winning author son, Gabe Thompson. ’Voodoo Child’ is a coming of age novel that tells the tale of three misfit friends, Jean, Oscar aka “Walmart”, and Bella, that band together and discover that they have more in common than they would have ever believed!
SECRETS NEVER KEEP, AND MAGIC CAN GET YOU KILLED!
Jean felt the possibility of things going wrong was huge. He had no idea what he was doing and from recent experiences, magic was a crap shoot. “Ha-ha,” he said with no humor. “You’re just a bundle of laughs.” He stiffened his spine, grabbed everything he needed, marched into the bathroom, ripped off his clothes and left the amulet dangling around his neck. He stared at the water. Misgivings circled through his gut giving him a stomach ache. He finally sighed and gingerly stepped in.
After a little hopping around, he sank into the water. The heat felt nourishing. As he poured all the ingredients into the tub, the scent of the herbs swirled around him. He inhaled deeply as they infused him with inner happiness.
With the smell of the herbs surrounding him in clouds of steam, Jean proceeded to the next step. He lit the white candle, held it in his right hand and chanted the incantation. “Hold me, shield me and defend me, so mote it be.”
He repeated the chant in his head. Hold me, shield me, and defend me. Then Jean dunked the candle into the tub and a blue flame spread across the top of the water. The fire was frightening, but it didn’t burn. The stone in the amulet glowed bright blue and warmed his skin. When he dunked his head through the flames and under the water, the fire went out. “Wow that was scary.” After drying off, he squeezed back into the borrowed clothes and left the bathroom running his fingers through his wiry hair. The water made the curls tighten so he worked at loosening them.
Bella looked like she’d been waiting impatiently for him to get done. “Well, did it work?”
“I’m not too sure. The bathwater caught on fire like the diary said it would, so I think I should be safe from being attacked by animals. But, it was just some herbs and a spell. How could that work?”
Bella looked relieved. “It sounds like it worked.” She pointed to his amulet. “Look, the stone is blue. Wasn’t it like gray a few minutes ago?”
Explore the mysteries of New Orleans’ French Quarter during Mardi Gras, through the eyes of three seventh graders as they search to reconnect with their parents and avoid a nasty set of bad guys. Left alone and homeless in Haiti, Jean Benoit is sent state-side by an orphanage to live with foster parents and attend Catholic school as a social outcast.
His new-found friend Oscar, known as Walmart, is mocked by fellow students as an overweight under-achiever whose mother abandoned him in Wal-Mart. The boys are befriended by Bella, an American Indian, who lives with her adoptive parents. Her birth parents are dead, but they left her a legacy she soon discovers as she begins to shape-shift. Jean receives a gift from his dead father, too. It’s a magic amulet pursued by a voodoo witch named Odette, her brother Bocor, and her son, Natas. Jean has no idea how to use it. He must learn on the fly, on a wild race around New Orleans, on a train to Little Haiti, Miami and back, to the cemetery in the swamp, as the three friends try to find his mother before the black magic users get to her, or them.Explore the mysteries of New Orleans’ French Quarter during Mardi Gras, through the eyes of three seventh graders as they search to reconnect with their parents and avoid a nasty set of bad guys. Left alone and homeless in Haiti, Jean Benoit is sent state-side by an orphanage to live with foster parents and attend Catholic school as a social outcast.
His new-found friend Oscar, known as Walmart, is mocked by fellow students as an overweight under-achiever whose mother abandoned him in Wal-Mart. The boys are befriended by Bella, an American Indian, who lives with her adoptive parents. Her birth parents are dead, but they left her a legacy she soon discovers as she begins to shape-shift. Jean receives a gift from his dead father, too. It’s a magic amulet pursued by a voodoo witch named Odette, her brother Bocor, and her son, Natas. Jean has no idea how to use it. He must learn on the fly, on a wild race around New Orleans, on a train to Little Haiti, Miami and back, to the cemetery in the swamp, as the three friends try to find his mother before the black magic users get to her, or them.
award-winning author interview!
1.This urban fantasy read is laced with lots of humor throughout-are you and your cowriter funny people?
My son and coauthor, Gabe, has a wicked sense of humor we share, but middle school kids are just naturally funny. They might not think so, but hormones, growth spurts, and the ups and downs of life provide endless possibilities for humor.
2.What is your target audience for this entertaining novel?
It’s a middle grade book, middle school age kids and up, because I think anyone could enjoy it.
3.New Orleans was a fascinating setting for this tale. Have you ever visited or lived there and how did you decide on it for ‘Voodoo Child’?
I love to visit New Orleans. My co-author and I took several trips there together to get background and to enjoy the Quarter.
4.Your main characters are from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Was this intentional?
I think kids come in all shapes and colors and so should your characters. Ethnicity, cultures, and backgrounds make for an interesting blend and add flavor to your writing.
5. More than one main character has abandonment issues. How does this shared experience in your opinion shape their behavior and choices during the course of the story?
My chosen theme in Voodoo Child was abandonment, especially the loss of a mother. It’s amazing to see how different children deal with it, and also how kids survive and succeed no matter what.
6.How would you sum up the underlying theme of this novel?
Kids need their moms and their families. They know it and will search for a place to belong and a family.
7. In many ways this is a dark story with multiple villains. Which are your favorites?
I like the bumbling fool apprentice voodoo priest, Natas. He was goofy and fun to write.
8.Did you draw from any of your own childhood memories or experiences when creating these well drawn characters?
I had six kids. I worked with children when I was a reporter. I know them. It’s important to know kids if you’re going to write about them. I came from a military family. We weren’t close. Maybe I’ve always wanted a close family and maybe that’s why I made such a big one. You never know.
9.Tell us about cowriting with your children Gabe and Melanie, pros and cons.
I like writing with a partner whether Gabe or Mel. When you have a partner, you never get writer’s block. They always had ideas. Mel met interesting people working in big restaurants and as a bar tender. Gabe is just a very creative person and teaches school. He knows teenagers. But they both have careers and families so sometimes, they were busy when I needed help. I did most of the writing, but I have the time to do it. Both were great beta readers as well, so when editing, I always had their input.
10.Will there be a sequel to “Voodoo Child’?
We never thought about it so I don’t know.
11.What projects are you currently working on that fans can look forward to in the future?
I just finished a Young Adult Science Fiction called Starhaven. It contains a menagerie of animals, aliens, strange planets and a terrific heroine with a secret embedded in a tattoo on her neck. Tell-Tale Publishing also has the next two books in the series Vagrant Chronicles; Mutant and Descendent. I haven’t thought too much about the next one after that, but rest assured, there will be one.
We bid a fond farewell to our amazing author guest Janet Post and look forward to her next exciting novel!
THE WHISICAL HERALD is casting off! Be sure to come aboard again where the rum is top notch, the winds are fair and the journey into astounding and intriguing literary seas always brings new adventure!
I remain your humble servant,
Patricia Mattern, Mistress of THE WHIMSICAL HERALD
Mistress of Madness
Well, do you have any idea why a raven is like a writing desk?
Lewis Carroll, in 1897, proposed this answer, "Because it can produce a few notes, though they are very flat; and it is 'never' put with the wrong end in front!" (raven, spelled backward, is nevar aka never...or as we like to say here at TT...never more!)