The Genre Traveler chats with Lauri Owen about her Embers series of novels set in an alternate Alaska where decadent mages rule and shape-shifters, indigenous to the land, are their slaves. Topics we touch on include the rural nature of Alaska, the nature of villains, good vs. bad in a cultural context and the advantages of writing fantasy.
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Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever by Stephen R. Donaldson
Thomas Covenant is a bitter, cynical writer afflicted with leprosy and shunned by society. But he is magically transported to The Land where he is destined to be the heroic savior, battling against the evil Lord Foul. He is a reluctant and flawed hero (he rapes one character), but still ends up fulfilling his destiny.
The first trilogy, The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever, was followed by a second, The Second Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, and a follow up tetrology, The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, with the fourth book due out in 2013.
The Yupik people of Alaska
This indigenous folk of western, southwestern, and south-central Alaska, as well as the Russian Far East, are Eskimos related to the Inuits. Traditionally, salmon and seal make up their primary protein sources. The Yupik are unique among native peoples of the Americas in that children are named after the last person in the community to have died.
Fantasy Authors Who Influenced Lauri
- Katherine Kerr, author of the Deverry series.
- Kate Elliot, author of the Cold Magic series.
- Terry Pratchett, author of the Discworld series.
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
First published in Lippincott’s Monthly Magazine in 1890, Wilde later revised and expanded the story for the novel version published by Ward, Lock and Company in 1891.
For more information about Lauri Owen