Today I have the privilege of featuring C.M. Banschbach and her newly released book, Oath of the Outcast on my blog. My preordered and signed copy just arrived a few days ago!
A lost brother.
An unwilling outlaw.
A rising enemy.
An unusual alliance.
Years ago, Rhys MacDuffy was brutally cut off from his clan, stripped of his name and inheritance, and banished to the remote Dragon Keep. Perched high above the Shang Pass in the land of Alsaya, he assumed the mantle of the Mountain Baron, serving out his sentence as the overseer of the worst outlaws and outcasts.
But one day he receives a desperate message from the clan who disowned him: MacDuffy’s Seer—his beloved brother—has been taken by their enemies.
With his band of Mountain Brigands and an unwelcome sidekick, Rhys leaves his mountain stronghold to find and rescue his brother. The tide of war is rising amongst the Clans of Alsaya, fueled by the magic-wielding sect of Druids who seek to unleash a dark force the world has long forgotten.
Can the bond of blood run deeper than banishment?
Doesn’t it sound epic?!
I also had the privilege of interviewing the author! The questions are in bold, her answers in normal type, and my responses in italics.
But first, a little bit about the author herself. 😉
C.M. Banschbach is a native Texan and would make an excellent Hobbit if she weren’t so tall. She’s a pizza addict, a multi-faceted fangirl, and a firm believer in being authentic—even if it means acting like a dork sometimes! When not writing fantasy stories packed full of adventure and snark, she works as a pediatric physical therapist where she happily embraces the fact that she never actually has to grow up.
She also writes YA/MG fantasy-adventure as Claire M. Banschbach.
Now for the interview!
1. What was your favorite thing about writing The Oath of the Outcast?
It was so easy to write! Haha! Even when I needed to cut out plot arcs that weren’t working, I always came up with a solution really fast. But I also loved writing each of the characters, Rhys especially, since he just kind of barged his way into my head and demanded this story.
2. What inspired you to write it?
Driving to an internship one morning in the fog gave me the idea for the opening scene! I spent the rest of the day brainstorming this story that had suddenly just leapt into my lap, then went home and started writing it! I was also about a third of the way through when I realized that this book was also telling a bit of my story and helping me finally confront some of my own scars. That also really helped me dive a little deeper into all the characters and story world!
That’s really neat, and I can relate so much to all of that! I love being inspired like that.
3. What’s a favorite memory you made along the way?
A lot of the conversations I had with my sisters, in particular, my older sister when they were reading the first, messy draft, and hearing the reactions, and having lots of discussions about everything! But I loved it when my sister told me “You realize that Rhys and Sean are basically Dean and Sam Winchester, right?” Cue me protesting, then laughing awkwardly, and now owning Rhys’s personality with Dean Winchester gifs.
Haha, that’s great.
4. Favorite character/quote from your book?
Rhys/The Baron is for sure my favorite character. Though his friend Alan MacDuffy is a close second. Have a quote that is essentially their relationship.
Alan kept a straight face as he spoke again. “You know I can foresee the future a bit myself.”
“Can you foresee yourself shutting up for more than five minutes at a time?” Rhys said.
Haha, that’s hilarious. I can’t wait to read that in context with the whole story. 😀
5. Who are some of your favorite authors?
Stephen Lawhead, Michael J. Sullivan, Jennifer Neilson, Brigid Kemmerer (for her contemporaries weirdly enough lol!).
I’ve heard a lot of good things about Lawhead, but I have yet to read him.
6. Any songs that inspired this book?
The Islander by Nightwish. Funnily enough the main reason this was an original inspiration got cut because it totally didn’t end up working. But I still always think of this book when the song comes up on my playlist.
The Only Way Out by Andra Day. This one came later in the process, but sums up the entirety of the series.
Interesting. I’ll have to check those out.
7. Anything you learned when writing The Oath of the Outcast?
As corny as it may sound, I learned a bunch about myself as a person and as a writer. Like I mentioned above, this story really helped me confront some of my old scars head on and start healing a little. It’s very much the story of my heart.
I love it when stories do that.
8. Any advice to give to other writers?
Keep writing. Find a mentor/critique partner. Write the stories that tug at your heart and fill your soul.
I totally agree with this!
Thanks again, so much, for letting me interview you and feature you on my blog!
Since I had preordered OotO, I had the privilege of reading it before the majority of you. 😉 I ended up reading the book in a few hours–I was unable to put it down. (And that’s rare, even for me!)
Inspired by Scottish and Welsh legend and folklore, Claire has succeeded in weaving a riveting fantasy filled with magic, betrayal, promises, brotherhood, and adventures beyond imagination. Characters with hidden pasts come to life, bringing with them their hurt and pain, wanting healing. Witty phrases lighten the mood, but who knows what Lord Adam Berkley has next up his sleeve for Rhys MacDuffy–or his brother and Seer, Sean.
I personally loved Sean and Alan the moment they appeared on the scene, and I grew to love Rhys in his own broken way as well. I loved this story so much and I can’t wait for the sequel! Legend-inspired stories are always up my alley, but especially this one–I need more space on my top shelf. 😉 Keep it up!
Below are links to buying your own copy and following the author!
Crosshair Press – https://crosshairpress.com/product/oath-of-the-outcast/
Newsletter sign up for free prequel short story – http://eepurl.com/gwcGjD
Thanks so much, again, for letting me be a part of this book launch!