I have the great pleasure of calling John Pitts a mentor and friend. He is an excellent author and the Sarah Beauhall series deserves to continue on. I know a lot hinges on trade paperback sales. Forged in Fire is worth picking up in physical copy. Something to think about.
On July 23rd, the trade paperback of Forged in Fire hits the shelves. This is the third in the Sarah Beauhall series about a young lesbian blacksmith in present day Seattle who repairs a sword that just happens to be the legendary Gram and the chaos that ensues.
In Forged in Fire, Sarah has uncovered even more that is wrong with the world in the form of a blood cult lead by a seriously anti-social necromancer. Justin, the necromancer, just happens to have once dated Anezka, one of the blacksmith masters that Sarah has had the pleasure of working with.
I love this book for several reasons. It was a good chance for me to step out of my comfort zone in several areas which is a HUGE bonus for writers. Breaking through the walls and trying things, exploring themes or touching on subject matter that is outside our norm makes for powerful story telling.
Sarah really has embraced the way her world is unfolding and is approaching it with a fervor she never knew she had in her. Katie, her lover and best friend, begins to really come into her own as a bard, with the music and magic literally bursting out of her.
The rest of the crew jump in and round out the story with depth and consequences. Every action has meaning, magic has a cost, and even the most well intentioned decision has a ripple effect that goes beyond any careful (or not so careful) planning on everyone's part.
Another thing I find fascinating about this series in general is the fun of layering in story. I get a very real sense of joy by planting clues that may bear fruit in this book, or maybe the next. The world isn't a single D&D adventure that is completely wrapped at the end. Oh, the story has a fine resolution, but the world rolls on, the characters have lives beyond this book, and I dearly hope that you the reader can't help but wonder just what might happen next.
At least that's the feedback I've been getting from eager readers. Of course, as the author, there are things I know that the readers don't always catch. But I can live with that. What I'd really love is when you read the books, that you'd contact me, ask questions, let me know what you liked and what you didn't like. Let me know if there are things I should do better in the future, or things that you want to see.
I can't promise I'll do any of those things, but it's a real boon to a writer to hear what's working and what isn't. I especially want to know if the things I'm foreshadowing are what you the reader is anticipating as the next thing.
Beyond that, I just hope you're entertained. That's the whole point of this exercise, after all. I'm a sucker for a damn good story, and I hope Forged in Fire fill that for you.