Welcome back for part two of my interview with C.H. Knyght. If you missed last week's post, you can find that here. This week, I'm also happy to share with you my book review of the second book in her series 'The Mother', Nightvision: Midnight Sands. Read on to check it out!
Book Review: Nightvision - Midnight Sands by C.H. Knyght
Nightvision: Midnight Sands by C.H. Knyght
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Wow! I was really looking forward to this book and C.H. Knyght has not disappointed me. It's been well worth the wait. I love the characters and how they interact with each other. They really are much like my family - sometimes fighting with each other but never giving up on each other. This made them easy to relate to from the beginning in book 1 - Nightvision Twilight Shadows.
The transition from book 1 to book 2 was seamless. The reader gets to pick right up where they left off. And it really is non-stop. Adventure, friendship, separations, new friends, and interesting discoveries are all woven together in this epic fantasy tale carry the reader on a journey they won't forget soon. And all of it takes place in such a magnificent world full of fantastical creatures and magical possibilities.
My favorite characters are Dante and Nakai. Watching them grow over the course of the two books has really endeared them to me. I feel like strong characters have become much stronger because of their journey. Dante's really stepping up in this book and taking his rightful place among his people in ways I don't think they expected. But they certainly hoped for it. Nakai is so filled with determination to reach their goal she pushes through quite a lot of hardship. I'm amazed and encouraged by her response to those trials.
So now I must wait for book three. But in the mean time, I'm so happy to be able to recommend this book to readers from teens on up to adults and generally anyone who loves a good fantasy tale. This one will not disappoint!
View all my reviews
Interview with C.H. Knyght, Continued - Part 2
Picking up where we left off last week...
Me: You've pointed out something major that I think writers might easily miss. It seems like something that just couldn't be overlooked but because of that, I think it's easier to forget to make them human with faults the reader can see, understand, and/or identify with. What's your favorite part of the writing process?
C.H.: I guess my favorite part is when a piece suddenly clicks into place and it all happens with the ease of breathing for a while. This is part of "don’t stop". You’ll hit places where it feels like you’re beating your head on a blank wall, or wallowing in swamp muck getting nowhere and nothing to show for it. Don’t stop. There’s only one way to overcome writer’s block, and that’s to write. Force it out one agonizing sentence at a time, it might be crap—but that’s what revision is for. Or look for a conflict! What’s happening? You’ve probably stalled out, drop in a drama bomb, or jump scenes altogether, jump stories altogether... Just write, and all of a sudden, it’ll click and it’ll flow.
Me: That's great. I feel the same way about that. Just keep going. Here's a question that I have seen a lot of talk about. Publishing and the frequency of it... Some people publish one book per year. Others say it's important to publish three or four in an year's time. How often do you publish books?
C.H.: Well, I guess I am aiming for one a year for now. That is as fast as I can get one written and polished up around work and life without going insane. Everyone has their own pace. It's a long-distance marathon, not a sprint race. Burn out is a different thing than writer’s block and it sucks. I do my best to avoid it.
Me: Good advice concerning burnout. Yikes! It's so hard to come back from that. When did you start writing your current fantasy series? What inspired you to do so?
C.H.: Oh geez, well, I was seventeen when I started Twilight Shadows. I stayed on it, but slowly. The first draft took like five years. I finally realized I had to pick up my act and move a little bit faster or I was never going to finish and hammered it out. I suppose the books I read inspired me to write fantasy: Mercedes Lackey, Tamora Pierce, Atwater-Rhodes, L.J. Smith these were all influencing others in my teens.
Me: I know of the first two but I'm unfamiliar with the others. I'll have to give them a look. What do you like most about the world you've created? What do you hate most about it?
C.H.: Shapeshifting is my favorite thing. Animal bonds, or shapeshifting into one has always fascinated me. What do I hate about it? I’m not certain I hate any of it. Though perhaps that I tap into more stereotypes or clichés than I ever meant too. There’s definitely still some of my teenage self in book 1. I like to think my characters grew up with me a bit.
Me: That's an interesting concept. I think it must be true when you take your time and work on a project for years. It really does grow with you. Let's talk a little about Midnight Sands, now. The settings in this series are beautifully crafted. They are typical fantasy settings but done is beautiful new ways. In this volume, the settings came across to me even more clearly. How long have you been a fan of the fantasy genre?
C.H.: Oh, I think I ran into Mercedes Lackey’s Queen’s Own trilogy when I was about nine or ten. Magical horses, I was pretty much sold on the spot.
Me: I hear what you're saying. Books really touch a child's heart and I think the importance of reading and the influence it can have on a child's love of learning and exploration are invaluable. Without spoiling the story, did you have the title for this book ahead of time knowing why it fit? Or did you discover the title as you wrote the book?
C.H.: Well, Nightvision was always the primary title and then when I realized it was going to be a trilogy, it became Twilight Shadows, Midnight Sands, and Dawn’s--? I believe it’s going to be Sacrifice, but giving it some time to settle yet. Sands came about because of the new setting, which I knew was coming. Though the whole mountain cave beforehand kinda stretched farther than I thought it would.
Me: Isn't it interesting how stories sort of take on tangents of their own, or at least lead authors down unexpected paths? I feel that's one of the more interesting things about writing. It makes me happy that you brought it up. Did you discover a new favorite character while writing this volume? Or are your favorites carried over from book one? What makes you like them so much?
C.H: Well I learned to like and understand Nakai a lot more, since I spent a lot more time in her head. Keer remains my boy, though I beat the snot out of him so he probably doesn’t like me much.
Thanks so much for stopping by for this portion of the interview. Stay tuned for part 3 next Wednesday. We'll be talking a little about her workbook series, which I love! :)
Melody Kittles writes fantasy fiction under the name Robin McElveen. She loves God, her family, the arts, a warm cup of coffee or tea, visiting friends, and collecting coffee & Pusheen items.
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