Hello hello and welcome or welcome back to my little bookish corner of the internet. Today sees the start of TBR and Beyond blog tour for Jade Fire Gold, and I’ll be sharing my interview with author June CL Tan along with my top five reasons to read. You can find the tour schedule here with the links to other blogs and what type of post they will be sharing.
My thanks to TBR and Beyond as always, and to June for her time.
Content Warnings: self-harm (gouging, eye horror; non-graphic), child abuse (physical, verbal, emotional manipulation/gaslighting), parent death (implied, off-page), character deaths mentions and descriptions of fantasy/magical violence (blood, war, political violence), mentions and descriptions of physical symptoms that might be triggering to those with emetophobia
In an empire on the brink of war . . .
Ahn is no one, with no past and no family.
Altan is a lost heir, his future stolen away as a child.
When they meet, Altan sees in Ahn a path to reclaiming the throne. Ahn sees a way to finally unlock her past and understand her arcane magical abilities.
But they may have to pay a far deadlier price than either could have imagined.
Ferocious action, shadowy intrigue, and a captivating romance collide in June CL Tan’s debut, a stunning homage to the Xianxia novel with a tender, beating heart, perfect for fans of The Bone Witch and We Hunt the Flame.
Hi June, and thanks for taking the time to talk to me about Jade Fire Gold. How are you feeling about its release?
Hello! You’re most welcome. I’m feeling excited and nervous? Mostly tired haha. I’m looking forward to taking a nap and binge reading and watching many things post release!
What was your approach to writing this book? Are you someone who plots everything out or do you take a more relaxed approach?
I’m kind of in between. I recently saw a tweet from another author saying that the term is “puzzler”. I generally have the big picture arc/storyline/plot, and I know where the story starts and more or less where it ends. Then, I have to write some of it out first to puzzle through the structure and many pieces.
What inspired this particular story?
I was largely inspired by my childhood in Singapore when my cousins and I would spend hours at our grandparents’ house watching movies and TV shows – largely in the wuxia (martial heroes) genre. I wanted to write something that felt meaningful to me in terms of the world the story would be set in, as well as weave in some of the culture I grew up in.
Very cheesily, I had a dream of a girl standing alone in a desert that was slowly devouring her world. I wanted to write something that was a homage of sorts to the fantasy genre in my culture (wuxia and xianxia), and also something similar to the stories I grew up with as a child, I started working on it from that foundation.
Do you have a writing soundtrack or do you work in silence?
It depends on my mood. I mostly write in silence or with some background noise like ‘rain in a zen garden’ or something. I find the sounds on YouTube and just let it loop. Sometimes I listen to a bunch of songs that have a certain vibe for the scene or chapter I’m writing or the story as a whole, and then I turn the music off and start writing.
What are you hoping your readers will take away from this book?
I hope that readers will get immersed into an interesting world and enjoy themselves for a little while in the story. Like a short respite from what’s going on right now in the world, and find some comfort in escapism.
Finally, how would you describe Jade Fire Gold in three words?
Family, lost and found. (I know it’s 4 words, but hope that’s okay!)
Top 5 Reasons To Read
- Multiple POV
I love a book that has multiple points of view for the story. Here we have both Ahn and Altan sharing what they’re going through, and it makes for incredibly interesting reading, allowing us to form a fuller picture of what is going on in this politically corrupt, magical world. This is one of my favourite ways to allow the reader to be all knowing, and it works so well here.
- “Her Destiny. His Revenge.”
I think the cover wording gives us a very good reason to read! This book has been on my radar for a long time, and as soon as I saw this cover I knew I had to read it, regardless of any other extra information. What could be more compelling than that?
- Family Is Everything
For both Ahn and Altan, in different ways, their entire being revolves around family. They’re both holding onto the love of their family with everything they have when we first meet them, leading to both strength and bitterness, depending on which angle you look at their stories from. This connection to their families is something that helps them along throughout.
- Strong Heriones
I loved Altan as a character too, but I will always have a weakness for strong girls and women in fiction, and with this book we have Ahn as well as several supporting characters who well and truly deserve to be called strong!
- Amazing Universe Creation
This is the type of book you can become utterly submerged in. The universe June CL Tan has created is a wonderful and gives us so much to get lost in. There is magic in the magic, and magic in every word that isn’t magic. I fell completely in love with the fantasy we were shown on every page, and whoever you are, you will love it too.
About The Author
June CL Tan grew up in Singapore where she was raised on a diet of classic books and wuxia movies, caffeine and congee. After obtaining three degrees, she decided she had enough of academia. Thankfully, those degrees were somewhat related to telling stories and now, she resides in New York City, writing under the watchful eye of her crafty cat. Jade Fire Gold is her debut novel.
Thanks for joining me today for my chance to talk about this incredible book. I’ll be sharing my full review soon, which I’m really excited to do, and can’t encourage you more to preorder Jade Fire Gold. You won’t regret it!