Author Interview: Lauren Jimerson

Today we have an interview with author Lauren Jimerson!

What were you like at school?

I was the quiet kid in school with a popular big brother. No one knew that I existed.

Which writers inspire you?

JK Rowling. Harper Lee. Octavia Butler. George RR Martin. Christopher Paul Curtis.

Some nice choices there. Martin’s Fevre Dream is my current bath book!

Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

I created Siobhan June out of this need to read about a character like me. She’s the protagonist of The Sarea Legends. She’s not your traditional female protagonist in a fantasy novel. She’s an adult with real life problems like family and finances.  Creating someone who is classy, elegant and prudish and then making them unravel is so much fun.

What are you working on at the minute?

Currently, I’m working on The Sarea Legends Book Two and a shorter novel called The Lavish Northrup Hall. It’s about the hunting party of Lord Benton’s heir are being haunted by a mysterious entity in 1920s England.

Oo, sounds like an intriguing one. 1920s England is always an interesting setting.

What genre are your books?

I love speculative fiction, particularly urban fantasy and paranormal. I always write from the perspective of a black woman encountering the supernatural. Another favorite genre of mine is southern gothic literature.

What draws you to this genre?

I was in the 6th grade when I first read Harry Potter and the experience really made fall in love with fantasy. You can create any type of world that you want. That was the initial appeal. But there is a lack diversity in the genre. So I started inserting it in my books.

How much research do you do?

A lot. One can never do enough.

Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers?

No. But I’m most definitely interested.

Why do you write?

I write because I have all of these stories and ideas in my head. As I mentioned earlier, there isn’t a lot of main characters that look like me in mainstream fantasy. I write for the shy and quiet little black girl in school who needs a role model. I write for diverse storytelling.

This is a great answer Lauren. I hope it inspires others to do the same!

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?

Short answer: I was getting old. There was a lot that I wanted to do in life but hadn’t. At a certain point I became disappointed in myself. That’s when I sat down and started writing They Came from the River.


Follow Lauren on Instagram and Twitter.

Thanks to Lauren for taking part in this interview.

The Sarea Legends Book One – They Came from the River

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Review: The Pharaoh’s Cat

The Pharaoh’s Cat by Maria Luisa Lang

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The Pharaoh’s Cat, a tragicomic fantasy narrated in the present tense by the cat himself, tells of a free-spirited, wise-cracking stray in ancient Egypt who suddenly acquires human powers and immediately captivates the young Pharaoh, making him laugh for the first time since his parents’ death.

The cat becomes the Pharaoh’s constant companion and, at the royal palace and on a tour of Egypt, participates in the festivities, developing an insatiable appetite for good food, wine, and gossip. Gradually, he renews the Pharaoh’s ability to enjoy life and inspires him to become a stronger leader. The bond of selfless love they share will change Egypt’s destiny.

The cat has a good friend in the High Priest of the god Amun-Ra and seeks his help in solving the mystery of his human powers and the supernatural manifestations that plague him. He has a mortal enemy in the Vizier—the second most powerful man in Egypt–who hates him for his close relationship with the Pharaoh. The Vizier’s persecution of the cat ultimately results in his fleeing with the High Priest to present-day New York City, where they find an ally in an Egyptologist’s daughter.

Maria Luisa Lang was born in Rome and lives in New York City. She has a degree in art history and is an amateur Egyptologist. The Pharaoh’s Cat is her first novel. The Eye of Nefertiti, both a sequel to The Pharaoh’s Cat and a stand-alone novel, is also available on Amazon in paperback and in a Kindle edition. – Blurb

Oh wow, I loved this book! This is indie writing at its best. The Pharaoh’s Cat is a fantasy adventure with a sci-fi twist. A standard length book of 178 pages, this feels like a super-quick read and is a breeze to chomp through.

I’m not going to say too much because the blurb tells you all you need to know really. The Pharaoh’s Cat is often hilarious, made me cry on three occasions and is just pure, heartfelt goodness throughout.

I highly recommend it to readers of any genre as I’m sure all will find many things to love about this unique “tail”. I should point out that cats and pyramids are two of my favourite things, but that doesn’t make this a biased review 😉

I don’t always give star ratings for books, but The Pharaoh’s Cat definitely deserves a 5/5. I’m sad that the book has ended, but luckily I can now move on to The Eye of Nefertiti! Look out for a review coming soon.

Strungballs Giveaway!

It’s time for another giveaway!

Strungballs

by Mike Russell

Editorial Reviews

“It is these types of stories, that make us question our own society, that I feel are going to be vital to literature in the coming years.” –TheGeekLyfe

“Pick up this book if you want to read something strange and mind-boggling.” -Snapstter

“Thoroughly recommended.” -TheStrangeAndTheCurious

Strungballs by Mike Russell

Strungballs by Mike Russell

About the Author

Mike Russell was born in 1973. As a child, he enjoyed daydreaming, art and writing strange stories. As an adult, he enjoys daydreaming, art and writing strange stories.

Mike Russell’s books have been described as Strange Fiction, Weird Fiction, Weird Lit, Surrealism, Fantasy Fiction, Science Fiction, Speculative Fiction, Metaphysical Fiction… but he just likes to call them Strange Books.

Ordered and mesmeric. This family’s interactions can pause to an extent that almost becomes non existent. Do they exist only if all is involved in the conversation? An eerie language that connects time, memories and moments described to the second. – Amazon review

An episode of “The Twilight Zone” or “The Outer Limits” in book form, ‘Strungballs’ is a must read for all who love the strange and unusual. – Amazon review

This was enjoyable to read. – Amazon review

Strungballs by Mike Russell

Strungballs by Mike Russell

StrangeBooks.com have kindly agreed to give away one signed copy of Strungballs to a lucky Examining the Odd reader! How do you enter? Simply leave a comment on this blog post and include your email address. Super simple!

Competition closes at midday (GMT) on Friday 7th July 2017. Giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere, as long as you’re over 18. One entry per person. Winner will be chosen using a random number generator. The winner will then be contacted for their address and StrangeBooks.com will send the signed book! Good luck 🙂

The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band – top 5 strangest songs

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Known for their odd comedy songs and surreal covers of rag-time tracks, The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band started out on the hit 60s show Do Not Adjust Your Set (a precursor to what would later become Monty Python’s Flying Circus), alongside Eric Idle, Michael Palin, David Jason (amazingly, the most popular cast member at the time), Denise Coffey and Terry Jones. The show even included cut-out animation from the wonderful Terry Gilliam in the second series. It basically consisted of a group of twenty-somethings having fun and being silly. Although these co-stars went on to become far bigger than The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, many believe that they were the true, weird stars of the show; hilarious, but with real musical talent. For those of us not old enough to remember the original broadcast, I’d love to see DNAYS aired again! We’re ready for the madness… Ok, I found it on Amazon for £2.42 – it’s mine!

The original lead singer from the band was the late Vivian Stanshall, a comedy genius. These days, Rodney “Rhino” Desborough Slater, Sam Spoons and Roger Ruskin Spear tour with pianist David Glasson as Three Bonzos and a Piano.

Anyway, I thought I’d round up my list of their top 5 strangest songs and list them here for you to discover/re-discover. So in no particular order…

  1. Shirt from the Tadpoles album. It starts with the sound of munching… I don’t need to say anything else.

2. Dr. Jazz also from Tadpoles. An usual track for the band as it’s instrumental.

3. Keynsham from the album of the same name. Cling-cling the ring, clang-clang, she sang…

4. Tent – just a little creepy…

5. and finally… Death Cab for Cutie. Just lovely.