Friday, September 28, 2012

Guest post: Wendy Delsol

Hi! It's Hilda. Yes, unlike popular belief, I'm still alive! Due to health issue, I have to limit my time on computer. Hopefully I'll be good and running fine soon! Please pray for me, lovelies. <3

Today, I have a guest post from Wendy Delsol, author of famous Stork series! :)

Destiny, Prophecy, and Karma

I am intrigued by the concepts of destiny, prophecy, and karma. All should probably be added to the cast of characters, they’re such an integral part of my narrator Katla’s story.

In fact, the very creative spark for the series has to do with destiny. Years ago, on the TV show Unsolved Mysteries, there was a story about a very young boy who claimed pre-birth memories of hovering and choosing his mother. Yes! Choosing! This rocked my world. And it got me thinking that we normally consider the soul from a post-death perspective. But what about pre-birth? Much later, when brainstorming for something fresh in the YA paranormal genre, I tweaked the idea to invent my human Storks, white witches charged with pairing souls and mothers.  And when Candlewick Press asked me to provide an author’s quote for Stork’s book jacket, this was my response: “The concept of destiny is fascinating, as is the idea of magic. It’s fun to think that we’re fated—or chosen—to be with those we love.”

But I don’t personally believe that we are helpless puppets to the forces of destiny and prophecy. Nor do I think any self-respecting protagonist should be powerless or without free will. Ever! And this is where, for me, karma comes in. Hulda, my wise leader of the Storks is one of the books’ prophets and sums it up best: “Karma is the turning of the wheel and is very important to the ancient religions of the Orient. Is much like fate, but they believe karma is our will as we swim in the river of our past and present. We cannot change the course of the river, but the strokes of our swim influence our destination.” 

Note: I made up the bit about the river (fiction is such a lovely thing). The Storks have their own cosmology, after all. It has roots in Norse mythology, but I may have dropped a realm (or two) if they didn’t serve my purpose.

And the idea of destiny sure gives an author some excellent material when it comes time to flesh out a love interest. Katla and Jack first met when they were just ten years old. Katla was visiting her grandparents at the time, and Jack was instantly smitten. Present day, he recalls the experience (in Stork): “It’s hard to explain,” he said, “but from the moment I laid eyes on you skating, I felt this unshakable sense of fate, or destiny, or whatever you want to call it.”

In Flock, Jinky—a character who is equal parts wise and wiseass—says to Katla: “As spiritual beings, we have to act on our premonitions. To ignore a gift, to not rise to the calling, is a willful defiance of our true purpose. For us, there is no coincidence, no chance.”

In the end, Katla’s journey is to embrace her gift, to accept the journey it requires, and to kick butt when butt-kicking’s necessary. Happy reading!

Thank you for stopping by my blog, Wendy! Destiny and prophecy have always been hot topic in YAs. And instant-smitten is just soo cute! ;)

You can learn more about Wendy Delsol here:

A Little Bit About Wendy Delsol
Wendy Delsol is the author of a young adult trilogy: STORK (2010), FROST (2011), and FLOCK (2012). The books are inspired by Norse mythology, adventure and Icelandic folklore. STORK was one of 25 titles out of over 1000 to receive a 2010 VOYA Perfect Ten and one of ten to win a 2011 Westchester Fiction Award. Delsol’s adult novel, THE McCLOUD HOME FOR WAYWARD GIRLS, was named an August 2011 Barnes and Noble Pick of the Week. The book is set in Iowa and tells the story of three generations of women and the secrets that bind them. Wendy has an undergraduate degree from Michigan State University and a graduate degree from California State University, Long Beach. She was born in Canada, grew up in Michigan, lived in Los Angeles for 20 years and now resides in Des Moines with her husband and two teen sons.

Grab your copy of Flock!

The climactic conclusion of a supernatural romantic trilogy starring a savvy, sharp-tongued heroine who taps into ancient Norse secrets.

After surviving her (shall we say) intense adventure in Iceland, Katla is psyched to be back for a blissfully uneventful senior year of homecoming and fashion explorations. But her hopes of dodging unfinished business are dashed by the arrival of two Icelandic exchange students: Marik, an oddly alluring merman-in-disguise, and Jinky, a tough gypsy girl. It seems Katla not only enraged the Snow Queen by rescuing her boyfriend, Jack, she also was tricked into promising her frail baby sister to the water queen — and Marik has come to collect. What’s worse, Katla doesn’t dare confide in anyone lest she endanger them, so even her soul mate, Jack, is growing suspicious. And now Katla’s stork dreams, her guide for matching babies with mothers, have become strange and menacing as well. Hold on for a thrilling finale as the heroine of Stork and Frost calls on her wits (and her wit) to protect those she loves and face a final mythic disaster.

Thanks for reading! <3 Have a wonderful Friday, everyone! :)

Monday, September 03, 2012

Monday Muse: Armchair Backpacker #5 - Sweden!

Hi everyone! Are you having a wonderful Monday today? Well, I hope everything goes well because after all, this is the first week of Fall! (or Spring in Southern Hemisphere. I won't forget you, dear Australians
) My summer break is officially over today, with me going back to study and everything. I'm missing summer (break) already of course, but on the bright side, I can dedicate myself to read more now! I always have tendency to read less, sleep more in holiday time LOL! x)

Now, for the mystery country!


Sweden, the beautiful country in Europe where Lisbeth Salander lives and creepy vampires from Let the Right One In haunts the neighborhood. I'm sure that Sweden is as much mystery to you as it is for me, so... enjoy! ♥ :)

The Bookie in Action
Hello! I'm Rebecca from Kindle Fever! *waves* I live all the way up in Sweden and while I hate that our winters are so long, I do love it here. :D

I'm a Kindle addict as you might have already guessed and to the left you can see my little reading corner poke its nose out (our new couch has a chaise longue I absolutely adore!) and my bookshelf. 

If you see this, you basically know where I spend most of my days. *giggles*

Places I Love

I live in the more northern part of Sweden and it's definitely not as special or eventful as the southern--so don't judge Sweden because of this. Lol! We actually just got a NetOnNet store, known for its bad locations, right next to us--that's how awesome we are. ;)

View this and you'll understand! You don't have to understand Swedish to get it.) Since I only got to take the pictures kind of last minute, I've settled with taking some pictures of my favorite areas around me!


 In the first picture you'll see a hamburger restaurant called Frasses that is a seriously awesome fast food restaurant and way more loved over here than, for example, McDonalds! We also have an, apparently special thing, called Skrovmål (a meal containing a double burger, fries and a soda basically) in different sizes, which is apparently even limited up to the northern parts of Sweden... I guess we're special? Lol!


 In the second picture you'll see our little "shopping center"! A few clothes/sport/electronics stores, supermarket, pharmacy and Systembolaget--the place you buy alcohol in, since it's the only place allowed to sell the stronger things. Another thing special for Sweden!


The supermarket is also the only place where I can find books around here without going to the library or down town; you can see their "awesome" selection in the third picture.


 In the fourth picture we have the library! But I have to say I've come to love it a bit less lately, since they don't really have the best selection when it comes to my genres and English books. We do have a bigger one down town, but it's the same problem there. *sigh* It's kinda cozy though!

Food (Candy!)

If I can say so myself, we have some awesome food here--although apparently we use way more salt than many... Below are some of my favorite foods as well as candy that's pretty Swedish, from what I've understood. ;)


The best soda ever! It's basically only sold during Christmas and is one of the yummiest things ever. It's the best selling drink around that time.


Mmh! It's basically food and cake in one! There's many different versions of foods and vegetables used, but they're all oh so yummy. Another have to if you're ever in Sweden and haven't tried it!


One of the best "husmanskost"-dishes ever. It's basically food you make completely yourself and pyttipanna is shortly explained a left-overs dish. Put some cubed ham, potato and/or sausage in a pan and fry them for a while and serve with eggs and beets. This is what you long for when being abroad for too long. ;)


 Oh palt, how I love you! Another northern Swedish thing that's delicious. I guess it's most similar to dumplings; potato, flour, ham... and served with lingonberry jam and butter!


 Not that I recommend it, but it's a specialty. ;) Stinky, fermented herring... You can always just watch Big Steve try it on YouTube. ;)

Ahlgrens bilar

Car candy! Lol, while it's not my all time favorite candy, I absolutely love it because it's so random. They started out with car-shaped candy in different colors and have since then made different accessories to them with different flavors. Like tiers, trailers... you name it!


I won't even go into specifics, just say that these are all my absolute favorite chocolates ever. There's nothing better. :D Nomnomnom! Look for them if you ever visit. ;)


We don't really have too many events or similar things here sadly, but we do get some music and other culture-ish things from time to time. One thing we do have around here though is a brännboll event! I love brännboll (a game kind of like baseball, but... not? For those curious, you can find the rules here and this tournament lets anyone enter a team and compete just for fun! There’s also a costume competition for the teams, so you'll often see them dress up for it while playing. ;) The only downside is the (mostly too much) drinking that's allowed during this weekend as well, but at least they're all having fun

Final Words
I wish life had let me have more time to show you some more awesome Swedish things, but I'm glad I got to show you some of it at least. I really hope you've all had a wonderful summer (it's most definitely fall here now judging by the weather *sigh*) and thank you Hilda SO much for inviting me here to share some Swedish things with you. :D *hugs* You rock!

Thank you so much for doing this awesometastic  post, Bex! You rock too! *hugs back* I have no tiny bit idea how to pronounce the food names, but they all seem YUMMY! And aww, don't we all have soft spot for chocolate? ;)

Right now, Rebecca's blog is on semi-hiatus, but you can still check her blog out, Kindle Fever! :) I love Rebecca's blog design, it's very professional-looking and clean! Simple but beautiful. I also love Rebecca's fresh writing! Her reviews are short, straightforward, and always brilliant! x)

The giveaway will be posted tomorrow, so stay tune! Thank you for sticking up with me during our journey in five countries! I meet more and more bloggers from all around the world lately, so I might will do Armchair Backpacker project again someday!

Thank you for reading! Hope you're having fabulous Monday (or any day you're reading this now), awesome people! :)


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