In my novel, By Darkness Hid, Achan Cham is a stray. This social rank is lower than a slave, because a slave at least had one parent claim him. Strays are the lowest of all and branded as such by their owners. But Achan dreams of a different life. One where he is worthy to marry the girl he loves, one where he is respected by others.
When a Kingsguard knight approaches him with an offer to train as his squire, Achan jumps at the chance, even though such a position is against the laws of the land. As Achan trains, his eyes are opened to a new world and new possibilities. But can his dream become a reality? Or is he only setting himself up for more heartbreak?
I went to school to be a fashion designer. It was my childhood dream, and I sought it with everything I had. Five years of college and three years on the job as an assistant designer and my eyes were opened. It was The Devil Wears Prada experience for me. I wanted out.
My husband and I started a family and I started writing a book. I didn’t feel like there were enough clean teen fiction options out there to recommend to the kids in our youth group. I was hooked, and a new dream filled my mind.
That dream came true on April 1, 2009 despite it being April Fool’s Day. My book, By Darkness Hid, released from Marcher Lord Press. Dreaming is a part of life. It’s what gives people hope and purpose. Sometimes we discover that our dreams are not what we built them up to be or that God has a different plan for our lives. And that’s okay. We can always dream up a new dream.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jill Williamson is a novelist, dreamer, and believer. She writes stories that combine danger, suspense, and adventure for people of all ages. An avid reader, she started Novel Teen Book Reviews (http://www.novelteen.com/) to help teens find great books to read. She lives in Oregon with her husband and two book-loving children. By Darkness Hid is her first novel. Check out her Web site - http://www.jillwilliamson.com/ - for more information.
ABOUT THE BOOK - By Darkness Hid
Half of Er’Rets is locked beneath an impenetrable shroud. On the side that still sees the sun, two young people struggle to understand the mind-communication abilities thrust upon them. It's called bloodvoicing. Some say it's a gift. One of the newly “gifted” wish it had never come.
Achan has been a slave all his life. When an enigmatic knight offers to train Achan for the Kingsguard, he readily accepts. But his new skills with the sword do not prepare him for the battle raging between the voices in his head.
Vrell Sparrow is not who she seems. She masquerades as a boy to avoid capture by the powerful forces that seek to exploit her. But Vrell feels called to help a young squire who recently discovered his bloodvoicing gift, even if doing so requires her to work with those who could destroy her.
While Achan learns to use his new ability, Vrell struggles to shut hers down. All the voices strive to learn Achan and Vrell's true identities—and a different kind of voice is calling them both.
WIN THE BOOK
If you’d like to be entered to win a copy of By Darkness Hid, just leave a reply to this blog. I’ll pick a winner at random on April 16th. Please leave an email address so I can contact you if you're the winner. (To prevent spammers from trolling for your email, please use this format with the brackets--you [at] yourmail [dot] com--or something similar.) Good luck!