Check out a Q&A with the author... The Stolen Kingdom by Jillian Boehme (Interview & Review) #yalit #yafantasy #newbook @tbrbeyondtours

Welcome! I really enjoyed this author's last book, Stormrise, and was excited about
another release from her! Read an interview with the author and my review below...

The Stolen Kingdom
By Jillian Boehme
YA Fantasy
Hardcover, Audiobook & ebook, 336 Pages
March 2, 2021 by Tor Teen


For a hundred years, the once-prosperous kingdom of Perin Faye has suffered under the rule of the greedy and power-hungry Thungrave kings. Maralyth Graylaern, a vintner’s daughter, has no idea her hidden magical power is proof of a secret bloodline and claim to the throne. Alac Thungrave, the king’s second son, has always been uncomfortable with his position as the spare heir—and the dark, stolen magic that comes with ruling.

When Maralyth becomes embroiled in a plot to murder the royal family and seize the throne, a cat-and-mouse chase ensues in an adventure of dark magic, court intrigue, and forbidden love.

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What inspired you to write The Stolen Kingdom?

Lots of years ago, I wrote my very first, very terrible novel, entitled The Seeds of Perin Faye. It was an absolute mess, as first novels are wont to be. Even still, I got a couple of requests from literary agents who were likely horrified when they saw what had turned up in their mailboxes. (Actual mailboxes. Because this was back when e-querying was a new phenomenon.)

Fast forward to a couple of years ago. STORMRISE was soon to debut, and my editor at Tor Teen was ready to choose which of my stories to publish next (I’d signed a 2-book deal). The plan was to come up with three synopses so that my editor could choose her favorite. Slight problem, though—I only had two story ideas to offer.

And then it hit me—what if I rewrote The Seeds of Perin Faye? There was so much about the world I’d created that I loved. I knew it would have to be a complete rewrite, but it was an exciting prospect. It needed a fresh twist, though—something to take it to the next level. And I wasn’t sure what to do.

In the original, very-bad story, one of the main characters was Nestar, a 16-year-old who found himself embroiled in a plot to steal the throne that, apparently, belonged to him. Meanwhile, his younger sister Maralyth and her best friend Alac were busy with magic stones and time-traveling grandmothers (I’m cringing as I type).

My big A-HAH moment arrived when I had the thought: What if, instead of Nestar being the one with a secret bloodline to the throne, I make that Maralyth’s story? And so The Stolen Kingdom was born.

Would you tell us more about the main characters?

Maralyth is 17 and wishes more than anything that she could spend her time working the vineyards instead of stuck in the kitchen cooking for the workers. Ever since her mother caught her using her magic to ripen grapes and admonished her to never use the magic again, she has kept it a secret—while she continues to use it. She’s a born leader, she loves her family, and she’s terrified of dogs.

Alac is 18 and has no desire to ever inherit his father’s throne—which is a good thing, because he’s the second-born son. His secret wish is to leave court and run a vineyard of his own. He wants nothing to do with the dark magic that has been at the heart of his family for a hundred years.

Which character do you most relate to and why?

Believe it or not, it’s probably Ellian! At that age (16), I would have been the starry-eyed girl who was excited to be married to the prince who would one day become king.

What advice would Maralyth and Alac each give about navigating their world?

Maralyth: “If you hate the magic and the throne that much, maybe you should just leave now and implement your secret plan.”

Alac: “Don’t let people use you for their own purposes—something that happens an awful lot at court.”

What part or aspect of this story do you love the most?

I love the world of Perin Faye because it’s the first world I ever created. I love the rolling vineyards and earth-based magic.

What books do you currently have next to your bed (or wherever you keep your stack) to read?

I’m currently reading Seventh Sun by Lani Forbes and Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel. Next in the queue is Dance of Dragons by George R.R. Martin (and he’d better finish that sixth book soon!).

What do you enjoy doing when not writing or reading?

I enjoy walking with my husband, playing the piano, singing, and scrapbooking.

What are you working on next?

A new project in a new direction!

My Review

THE STOLEN KINGDOM is a story about a hidden heir to a throne, a stolen magic, and two star-crossed characters. It's full of family, friendship, romance and adventure. YA fantasy fans may enjoy this one.

I really loved both the main characters from this story. I could easily empathize with Mara's growing friendship and feelings for Alac. She's so conflicted. Alac also has his own turn of being conflicted. They're put in one impossible situation after another. I definitely enjoyed how their relationship develops and the chemistry that creates plenty of sparks. I also liked Tucker, Alac's guard and best friend.

I felt the overall plot of the story moved at a steady pace and was intriguing. The whole idea of magic being stolen and turning destructive because it doesn't belong to its wielder is a pretty great idea. I also liked the idea of the magic being linked to time and to ripen or grow things. It also felt natural the way that Mara uses her magic.

I did have some issues with the story, especially towards the end. The major issues I had included the ease in which Mara was used and that she didn't really fight back or even exert herself most of the time. I'm still conflicted on what happened and her level of involvement or noninvolvement. Then I just couldn't buy that she wanted to rule as queen and had all these issues with her current king when none of that seemed to start until after she's being used as a pawn. It just didn't seem to be her fight, but was more like she adopted it after the fact. It rang false to me. I think she needed to have had those desires at the start of the story, or at least have issues with the way things were. Then there was the info dumping towards the end. All these lineages and what happened when and to who was all explained and most of it wasn't even necessary for the story. It made it drag on and felt like the author decided she needed to explain some things and tie up loose ends that weren't even loose. None of it actually added anything to the story. There were also things that just didn't make sense to me or feel realistic.

In the end, was it what I wished for? I was hoping for another great read from this author. This one didn't work as well for me, but I still loved the characters and the overall plot. I'd also will still pick up this author's next book.

Content: Mild swearing, some innuendo, and violence.
Source: I received a complimentary eARC from the publisher through NetGalley courtesy of TBR and Beyond Tours, which did not require a positive review. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Jillian is known to the online writing community as Authoress, hostess of Miss Snark’s First Victim, a blog for aspiring authors.

In real life, she holds a degree in Music Education, sings with the Nashville Symphony Chorus, and homeschools her remaining youngster-at-home.

She’s still crazy in love with her husband of more than thirty years and is happy to be surrounded by family and friends amid the rolling knolls of Middle Tennessee.

Tour Schedule

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