Dark Houses by Catherine Dale
The stories say The Old Ones built wonderful cities, flew through the air and could send messages across the globe in the time it takes for an arrow to find its target. Caylen's seen enough relics to believe at least some of that, but she doesn't regret living in her world instead of theirs. She's a nomad, making her home in the Wildlands between the "islands of civilization" in the fortified cities. Her world can be dangerous, but she can't imagine living any other way.
When her band of nomads rescues a young nobleman from Yorkton, Caylen's mother wants to deliver him to the nearest waypost, collect her reward, and move on. But Caylen is intrigued by Logan, and worried that his predictions of trouble for the nomads may be accurate. In order to protect the Wildlands she loves, Caylen has to leave them behind. In the city, she's not sure if she can trust anyone, not even Logan. And the more she learns, the more she realizes that she's far from the only one in danger. Her enemy is powerful and ruthless, and the cruelty she sees makes Caylen dream of the simplicity of the Wildlands. But she can't walk away from the suffering, so she'll have to stay and fight. It's the nomad way.
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--The Twitter version: tell us about your book in 140 characters or less.
Caylen is a nomad, living in the wild spaces between the cities that harbor what’s left of civilization. Revenge sends her to a city.
I’m fascinated by the idea of Dark Ages, times when there’s no central authority and people are left to look out for themselves. All great civilizations in the past have fallen, and left a Dark Age behind them, and there’s no reason to believe the current civilization will be any different. So I started to wonder what it would be like to live in that time, and whether it would be all bad…
--Which character would you most/least like to have dinner with?
I think Nora would chew me up and spit me out, but I’d love to spend some time with her, if she’d allow it!
--What book(s) is your book’s “cousin”? (Similar set-up or style)
Cross between The Chrysalids (for the setting) and (of course) The Hunger Games (for the kick-ass heroine)
--If a fairy godmother told you could be put into the world of your favorite book for 24 hours, which book would you pick and why?
Ooh, fun question! I think I’d want to go back in time as far as I could get, so maybe The Clan of the Cavebear. I could see what the world was like when humans were just one more species of animals struggling to survive. I wouldn’t want to stay back there for more than 24 hours, though!
--What is one thing you would tell your 15 year old self?
I would tell myself to RELAX. It’s all going to work out. Life is more interesting when you take a few detours instead of staying on the main highway all the time. It’s not a race, and we all get where we’re going eventually.
Lightning round: this or that?
Vanilla or chocolate? Vanilla
Edward or Jacob? Jacob
Hockey or soccer? Hockey
Ebook or paper? Ebook
Salty or sweet? Salty
Beach or mountains? Mountains
Phone call or email? Email
Early bird or night owl? Night Owl
Dog or cat? Oooh, tough one… Cat. But a very dog-like cat!
Messy or neat? Messy
Ninjas or pirates? Pirates