Friday, August 5, 2011

Time with Author LeAnne Hardy


Welcome, LeAnne!

Tell us about your book.

Glastonbury Tor is part sixteenth century historical fiction and part visionary fiction of the Holy Grail. The ancient olivewood drinking bowl that young Colin Hay finds in the treasury of Glastonbury Abbey, was disregarded as worthless wood by King Henry VIII’s men when they inventoried the abbey’s treasures. But Father Dunstan, the tortured prior who preaches forgiveness, treasures it. Father Bede, as demanding as the hated father from whom Colin has fled, covets it. Abbot Whiting finds in it the courage to face his enemy, even as monasteries are being dismantled all over England. Will Colin find the personal faith and sense of worth he seeks? Can he ever forgive his father... or himself?

Who did you write your book for?

The simplest answer is that I wrote this book for myself. On a visit to the ruins of Glastonbury Abbey I was fascinated by the events surrounding its closure under Henry VIII. I have loved the Matter of Britain, the cycle of stories surrounding King Arthur and his knights, since reading Tennyson in high school. Glastonbury sits at the heart of those stories. It is the legendary Avalon where Arthur was taken to be healed of his wounds; the home of the Fisher King, protector of the Holy Grail; and the Lady of the Lake who gave Arthur his sword Excalibur. It was a major center of Christianity for a thousand years.

I have a passion for young people and a desire to provide them with images that will impact their thinking about God for a lifetime, so I chose a teen protagonist and asked why he might be present for those dramatic final events. This story of a dysfunctional home and the need for forgiveness grew from there. Because of the time period and subject matter, the language ended up more formal than the typical teen novel. It was eventually published as adult fiction, but will definitely appeal to sophisticated teens and fantasy lovers.

What is the part of your book you personally like best?

When I read aloud to groups, I usually choose the scene from chapter fifteen when the saintly Father Dunstan is on his deathbed and the simple olivewood drinking bowl first shows itself in all its glory. Colin hears a far off chant of “Holy, holy, holy!” which in my mind is in every language under the sun. I often focus on that vision when I am taking communion myself. 

What is the biggest benefit the reader will take away from reading your book?

I hope readers will take away a sense of profound worship of a heavenly King more awesome than Arthur or Charlemagne or Aragorn. There are also themes of forgiveness woven throughout. Colin must forgive his father as he learns from others forgiving their enemies. He must also accept forgiveness from a peasant family whose secret reading of Tyndale’s forbidden English Bible he inadvertently exposes.

Are you working on anything now?

I have set aside the sequel to Glastonbury Tor to work on major revisions to a novel about HIV in Africa that a publisher is asking for. They want a younger, YA protagonist and for the story to begin in America to interest American readers more. That is calling for some pretty major changes since although I am American, I don’t know America nearly as well as I know Africa after living there for fifteen years as a missionary.

Did you always want to be a writer?

I was always a reader, but it never occurred to me to be a writer until an irresistible character popped into my head when I was in my mid-forties. I think I assumed that since I couldn’t write like my favorite author, C.S. Lewis, I couldn’t write at all. Actually, I’m glad it didn’t occur to me to write when my children were at home. I have a tendency to be very focused and I’m sure I would have struggled with neglecting either my fictional family or the real-life one.


Want to know more about LeAnne? She'll join us again tomorrow for part two in her Glastonbury Tor interview. You can purchase Glastonbury Tor from Amazon.

LeAnne is giving away a copy of Glastonbury Tor. To enter the book giveaway, leave a comment on this post. AND tomorrow's post for two chances to win. 

15 comments:

apple blossom said...

Please include me in this book giveaway thanks

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Amy said...

I would like to win this book. Please enter me. Thanks.

sweetdarknectar at gmail dot com

Cindy Patterson said...

I would love to be entered in this book give away! Sounds like a great read! :)
cindypatterson3@yahoo.com

Charity U said...

Please enter me! It sounds like a really fun book!

Rebecca said...

Thank you so much for the chance to win this. This looks like a great book. Thanks again.

agent_beckster(at)yahoo(dot)com

ann said...

Thanks for the contest. Enter me please as I would like to win this book.



amhengst at verizon dot net

karenk said...

please count me in...thanks :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Tracy Smith said...

Please include me in this giveaway. Thank you.

Countrysunset40 (at) aol dot com

Marianne said...

Thanks for the interview..will be looking forward to LeAnne's next book, but would like to read this one first. Thanks for the chance to win. mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com

Anonymous said...

Not a book I would typically pick up off the shelf, but this sounds wonderful! I love that Ms. Hardy wants us to walk away with a sense of Worship...a passion of mine! I would love to win this! Thank you for the chance!
Blessings,
Kelly Y. in Virginia
kelly *at* dkcountryarts *dot* com

Sharon Bull said...

This is a book I'm very interested in reading. LeAnne is a good writer and I know this will be an excellent read!

Jill Gardner said...

What a fascinating interview. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I would read it. Haven't a clue about those characters and places after 38 years in Africa, out of touch.

Lois Morgan

LeAnne Hardy said...

Setting is different. Worldview is different, but human nature is similar across time and space.

Sheri Harrington said...

I loved this book! Already have a copy and just bought another to give to the high school where I work, but I'll be glad to have another to give away!

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