Please welcome Charlotte Ashe and
Since his childhood, Brieden Lethiscir has admired The Sidhe, the beautiful and magical beings native to the Faerie world outside his homeland of Villalu. Though he grew up in a culture accepting of Sidhe enslavement by Villalu’s elite, Brieden finds that he can no longer tolerate the practice when he becomes a steward to Prince Dronyen, who is viciously abusive of his sidhe slave Sehrys. Captivated by the handsome and mysterious sidhe slave, Brieden vows to free and return Sehrys to his homeland.
As they escape the capital and navigate a treacherous path to the border, Breiden and Sehrys grow close. Breiden soon learns both the true power of The Sidhe, and that the world that he thought he knew is not what it once seemed. If they survive to reach the border, he will have to make a choice: the love of his life, or the fate of his world.
The sidhe was tall, supple and lithe, as all sidhe tended to be, with milk-pale skin that glowed like moonlight over lean, taut muscles. Like all the others before him, he was naked, giving potential buyers a full picture of what they were bidding on.
And he was extraordinary, head to toe.
His chin-length hair was violet-red and it gleamed in the afternoon sun. His lips were pink and delicate with a pronounced bow, his nose had a narrow, smooth slope and his eyes...
It wasn't that they were the most incredible color imaginable: a storm of deep, contrasting, impossible greens unlike any Brieden had ever seen. And it wasn't that they were large and almond- shaped beneath a fan of plum-colored lashes.
It was that they were full to the brim with life.
Never before had Brieden seen a sidhe slave with such lively and expressive eyes, even as he stood for auction. Those eyes were not dull or defeated in the slightest. Wary, yes, and utterly devoid of trust, but also blazing.
Blazing like the eyes of that sidhe Brieden had seen at the riverbank when he was twelve years old— the only free sidhe Brieden had ever had the chance to behold.
The elf stood on that platform as if he owned it. As if he were judging every human man before him, and not the other way around.
He tucked a lock of hair behind a delicately pointed elfin ear, then jutted his chin to reveal a chiseled jaw that contrasted beautifully against his tender features.And though he knew it was insane, Brieden was quite sure that he was in love.
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We were able to ask Charlotte a few questions...
Hi Charlotte, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.
Thank you for having me! I am a social worker in Portland, Maine , and The Sidhe is my first novel. I majored in creative writing and literature way back in college, but it took me some time to find my way back to writing. I am so excited to finally write the books I’ve always wanted to write, combining elements of fantasy and romance with a focus on LGBTQ characters.
1) What book do you wish you could have written?
Sexing the Cherry by Jeanette Winterson. The woman is a genius, and she weaves fairytales into the text like she owns them. It’s an incredible work of fiction, rich and nuanced and stunning. I couldn’t recommend it more.
2) How important are names to you (in your books)? Do you choose names based on liking the way it sounds or meaning? How do you choose your names?
Names are incredibly important. A name change can completely change a character. Some names in The Sidhe have real-world inspiration: Brieden’s name was inspired by the last name of the first boy I ever truly desired, and Cliope’s name was inspired by the muse Calliope from Greek mythology. Most names I made up and assigned based upon naming conventions in the world of the book (many noble male names in Villalu ending with a -yen or -an, for example), in combination with simply experimenting until I came up with names that simply felt and sounded like a good fit for the character.
3) Were you already a great writer? Have you always enjoyed writing? How long have you been writing?
It feels cutesy to say I started writing the first time I picked up a pencil, but it’s actually pretty much true. I decided I wanted to be a writer when I grew up at around the age of eight, and I wrote quite a few “books” (i.e. sequential pages of stapled notebook paper) as a kid. Writing was my refuge growing up, and I wrote every day. I was editor of my high school literary magazine, and graduated from college with a degree in literature and creative writing--it was all I could really imagine doing with my life.
Despite that, I gave up writing for several years in my early 20s--it was a difficult time in my life--and found it again in my 30s. Writing again was like breathing again. When I took it back up, it became clear to me that whether or not I ever wrote professionally, I simply had to write. I honestly didn’t expect it to lead to a book deal, but here I am. It isn’t hyperbole to say that publishing this trilogy is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.
4) Which character, from any of your books, do you consider your greatest work?
This is going to sound like a cop-out, but it really is too soon for me to tell. Right now, as I’m writing book 2, I think my greatest character is Tash. But as I get further along in my writing career--or even just in this trilogy-- that answer could change. I love so many characters in so many different ways. But right now I’m finding Tash the most fascinating.
5) What hobbies do you enjoy?
Meandering (I would say hiking, but that sounds too vigorous to describe what I enjoy. I like going slow and taking things in), swimming, cooking, reading, traveling, and I’m not too proud to admit that I still enjoy a good D&D campaign every now and again.
More about the author:
Charlotte Ashe is a social worker by day and a writer of romantic fantasy by night. A long-time fan of speculative fiction that skews feminist and features LGBTQ characters, Charlotte loves writing stories that are sexy, heartfelt, and full of magic and adventure. She has put her B.A. in literature and creative writing to use over the years as a writer of online fan-based fiction, and her most popular work has drawn more than one million readers worldwide, been translated into several languages, and been featured in online publications including The Backlot.
Charlotte lives in Portland, Maine and can be found sleeping at the beach all summer and clomping along the cobblestones in her Bean boots all winter, writing fairytales in her head to distract from the cold.
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