Immagica by K.A. Last
Publication date: January 31st 2014
Word Count: approximately 68,000
Cover Illustration: Lawrence Mann LawrenceMann.co.uk
Cover Designer: KILA Designs – http://www.facebook.com/KILAdesigns
Map Illustration: Lawrence Mann LawrenceMann.co.uk
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Where anything is possible.
Enter at your own risk.
The night before her fifteenth birthday, Rosaline Clayton uncovers a deep family secret. She receives an amulet from her deranged father, and he tells her she must find the book in order to save him. Rosaline is used to her dad not making any sense, so she dismisses their conversation as another of his crazy rants.
When Rosaline’s brother, Elliot, drags her to their nana’s attic to explore, they find the old leather-bound book tucked away in a chest. It sucks them into its pages, transporting them to a magical world. Along the way, Rosaline and Elliot are separated, and the only thing she wants is to find her brother and go home.
The creatures of Immagica have other ideas. After years of war, their land lies in ruin. Using the amulet’s power, they want Rosaline to defeat the dragon and restore Immagica to its former glory. But Rosaline is bound to Immagica in ways she doesn’t understand, and when she discovers the truth about her family, she must follow her heart to save them all.
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“Where am I?” I asked the breeze.
“You know, talking to yourself is the first sign of craziness,” a voice said from behind me.
I spun around to face the most unusual girl I’d ever seen. She held a bronze spear in her right hand. It was fancy, like a sceptre, with a decorative head that housed a big emerald. What was it with all the emeralds? Maybe I was in Oz.
The stone was shaped like an eye, like the one in the amulet. It seemed to be staring at me, and I shuddered. Above all the fanciness was a silver point that could probably slice me in half in one-second flat.
Frantically, I looked around for something to use to defend myself if I needed to. But my only option was to brain her with a rock—if I needed to.
“I wasn’t talking to myself,” I said. I totally was talking to myself. “I just wanted company.”
The girl laughed. “You should be careful what you wish for in a place like this.”
She looked a little older than me, with pale blue eyes, and an olive complexion. Silver streaked her long, black hair, which had several small braids through it. Her cheekbones were high, and her mouth pouty.
“And where is this, exactly?”
The girl stared at me, as if I should know the answer. I still wasn’t sure if she would hurt me or take me to meet her no doubt equally weird-looking friends. She wore a pair of ripped denim shorts, and her top was a little strange. It was cream in colour, and looked like it was handmade, with lacing up each side and an uneven neckline. Her long legs were encased in shin-high chunky hiking boots, and she had a small leather satchel flung across her body. The spear totally completed the outfit.
“Not quite like Dorothy, is it?” she said, grinning. “She was greeted by munchkins, but you got me instead.”
“You’ve read The Wizard of Oz?”
“Of course.” The girl laughed. “And Alice in Wonderland, The Neverending Story, and Narnia. All the greats.”
Somehow, I found it hard to believe. Where the hell was the library?
“Who are you? And where am I?” I asked, putting my hands on my hips. I could play smart, too, but I hoped I appeared more confident than I felt.
“Which do I answer first? I hope you know who you are.”
“Never mind,” I said, turning away. She’d done her best to annoy me, and I’d only known her for twenty seconds.
“Don’t take it personally.” The girl fell into step beside me. “You’re not the only one who’s ended up here when they first arrived. Not everyone can expect to land in the thick of things.”
“What are you talking about?” I stopped to face her.
“I’m Brynn.” She stuck out her hand. I hesitated, but eventually took it. She pumped my arm up and down a few times before letting go. “So, where’s the book?”
“How do you know about the book?” I frowned.
“You usually can’t get here without the book.”
“Isn’t it obvious?”
“No, not really. Why do you want the book?” I asked.
“I don’t want the book.”
“Then why did you ask about the book?”
“You’ll need the book,” Brynn said. “The book is very important.”
I sighed. “Of course it is.” I pulled it from the waistband of my jeans, but I didn’t hand it over.
“You don’t trust me, do you?” Brynn asked.
“If you were me, would you trust you?”
“I’m very trustworthy.” She smiled and raised her eyebrows.
“But how do I know that!”
She shrugged. “You don’t.”
“Okay, this place is just odd,” I said.
Describe yourself in three words?
Crazy, pedantic, and passionate.
What are five things people may not know about you?
I’m half Italian.
I’d rather drive a 4WD than a sports car.
I received an Award of Excellence for my outstanding commitment to the Miss Australia Awards in 2000.
One of my legs is 1cm shorter than the other.
The first time I got my nose pierced it made me vomit.
What does writing mean to you?
Writing for me is a release, a way of getting my dreams and daydreams onto paper. It means I can stay sane in a world that often wants to test my sanity. When I write I get lost in the story and for a while nothing else can touch me. The worlds I create in my stories become my safe havens, and the characters become my friends. Writing is very much a part of who I am. Without it, I wouldn’t be me.
Who is the favourite character you’ve written so far?
That’s like asking me to choose a favourite between my two children. I love all my characters, but there are others that are more fun to write. In Fall For Me I really enjoyed writing Archer, Grace’s brother. He’s a bit cocky and has a pretty cool sense of humour. In Sacrifice, I loved getting into Michael’s head. Even though the book isn’t from his POV, he was an awesome character to write. He’ll be making an appearance in future books as well, so watch out. With Immagica, I enjoyed fleshing out Lex’s character. He is so much deeper than he might appear on the surface. At this stage Immagica is a standalone book, but there could be room for Lex to grow sometime in the future.
Are you a plotter or a pantser?
When I first started writing I just let it all flow out as it would in any which way. I usually have a loose idea in my head of what I want to happen, but I don’t set anything in stone. I think I enjoy the process more when I don’t know what’s going to happen, and I love how my characters often surprise me. In saying that, I have plotted out the next instalment of The Tate Chronicles. I did this because I really needed to know where the story was going before I could continue with it. So, I guess you could say I’m a bit of both. I like to get my ideas down on paper, but I’m pretty flexible and don’t mind deviating from the path if I need to.
Where do your ideas come from?
Oh! They come from everywhere. I’ve always been a daydreamer, and I love to stare into space, thinking about all the ‘what ifs’. I also have a really cool story idea that came to me in a dream. I actually jumped out of bed at one am to write it all down. I haven’t got past the first chapter with it, but it’s a story I think about all the time. One day it will become a book. The other thing I love doing is people watching. It’s amazing how the smallest action or snippet of conversation can spark an idea.
How did the idea for Immagica come about?
One of my favourite books is The Neverending Story by Michael Ende. I also love Narnia, Oz and Alice. I love the concept of travelling to a different world in some way, especially through the pages of a book, but I wanted to put my own special twist on it. I asked myself what a world would be like where it could be made, governed and controlled by imagination. The idea for Immagica actually started with the amulet. One night I was sitting in my recliner and I started doodling. About half an hour later I had my first rough sketch of how the amulet looks now. I took the amulet and made it the centre of Immagica, and the Eye was born. Everything else pretty much stemmed from there. In essence, Immagica is a portal fantasy adventure with fairies and a unicorn.
What’s ahead for you in 2014?
Well, I want to try and finish The Tate Chronicles. I have another novella and the sequel in the works. I probably won’t get it all published, but I want to at least finish writing it and publish the novella. I’d also like to pull my 2011 NaNo novel out of the drawer and dust it off. It’s not finished, but I think I’m in a good place now to give it a go and see where it takes me. Then I have a swarm of other ideas that are trying to bust out of my brain. I’d like to tackle some of those, too.
Where can we find you online?
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/kalast
K. A. Last was born in Subiaco, Western Australia, and moved to Sydney with her parents and older brother when she was eight. Artistic and creative by nature, she studied Graphic Design and graduated with an Advanced Diploma. After marrying her high school sweetheart, she concentrated on her career before settling into family life. Blessed with a vivid imagination, she began writing to let off creative steam, and fell in love with it. K. A. Last is currently studying her Bachelor of Arts at Charles Sturt University, with a major in English, and minors in Children’s Literature, Art History, and Visual Culture. She resides in a peaceful, leafy suburb north of Sydney with her husband, their two children, a rabbit named Twitch, and a guinea pig called Squeak.
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