Friday, August 17, 2018

Between Darkness and the Light by Paul T.H. Mitchner - Book Tour

Between Darkness and the Light
by Paul Mitchener

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Summary: A young, bored and confused teenager is thrown into an adventurous world that he believed only existed in books and dreams. Henry is destined to become the next Host Master and to lead the everlasting fight between the darkness and the light. The Wyvern, an ancient creature of mythical powers and defender of all things living, has to find a host to be able to dwell in this world. It chooses Henry. After his encounter with Bert and the odd dog Ben in the woodland, Henry s life would never be the same again: as well as finding his only true love, he s told that his mother and aunt had kept from him that they were creatures of nature and guardians of the woodland and commanded great powers. Henry has to find a way to grow up fast and find the strength to face up to both his own demons as well as those sent by the Shadow Master, a powerful sorcerer, who has the power and the aid from dark allies to destroy life and spread darkness across the world.

Information about the book
Title: Between Darkness and the Light
Author: Paul Mitchener
Release Date: 14th March 2018
Genre: YA Adventure
Publisher: Brown Dog Books

Guest Post
Top five mythical creatures and why

1.       Skull Bearers (Terry Brooks, Shannara series). These are probably my favourite of all mythical creatures. Followers of the Druid Brona, their bodies shaped and twisted to match their dark souls until they no longer recognisable as human. Hunched creatures with black cloaks, leathery wings, and long clawed hands and only found skulking around in the shadows or at night. They no longer have a will of their own and kill without mercy, their only reason to exist is to serve their master, the Druid Brona. Possibly the only creatures that has ever given me that real feeling of dread and hopelessness, through the seer brilliance of Brooks writing, these creatures are the pure pinnacle of evil. I don’t remember reading any other fictional creatures that has had such an impact on me.
2.      The dragon Strabo, the last remaining dragon. From Terry Brooks Landover series. He’s a forty feet long black dragon, with large bat-like wings, a barrel-shaped body and a long tail and covered with scales and spines. Strabo makes his home in the Fire Springs, a semi-volcanic region with various pits and pools of lava, hot springs, and a smoky unbreathable atmosphere which lays in a region far to the eastern wastelands of Landover. Instead of hating and fearing Strabo, I almost feel sorry for the creature, he’s grumpy and often aggressive towards others, but deep inside is a lonely creature that has been hurt, ostracized and banished from his own land. Strabo is an honourable creature, regardless of the consequences, he would rather give his life than shame himself by going back on his word. Through the mastery pen of Terry Brooks, Strabo clearly comes across as an interesting multi-layered character, and despite the fact that it’s a dragon, it’s still easy to relate to.
3.       "Dementors” J. K. Rowling. Throughout the seven books of the Harry Potter series these are among the foulest creatures that walk this earth. They infest the darkest, filthiest places, they glory in decay and despair, they drain peace, hope, and happiness out of the air around them and they’ll suck away every good feeling and memory you’ve ever had. Dementors bore a striking similarity to Terry Brooks Skull Bearers. Through the brilliant writing of Rowling, this one mythical creature has the ability to capture and set the mood not just on one or two pages, but whole chapters.

4.      Wraith, Running with the Demon. Terry Brooks. Wraith is a powerful, over-sized and unpredictable Wolf-like creature, that has the ability to fade in and out of existence at will and was created out of fairy magic by the father of the main protagonist of the story, a fourteen year old girl called Nest.  Wraith has already killed nest father but for some reason known only to itself, fuses with Nest and she becomes reliant  on the protection of a this mysterious wolf-like creature, later to combine both of their magic in order to fight off the main villain of the piece, Findo Gask. Wraith is a creature of nightmares, yet despite its dark side, it becomes the main protagonists protector. Brooks managed to make this precarious and potentially dangerous relationship work, keeping readers in suspense to whether or not Wraith would ever give into his dark side.

5.      Medusa in Greek mythology. Medusa was believed to be a monster or Gorgon, generally described as a winged human female with living venomous snakes in place of hair. Gazers upon her face would turn them to stone.  According to Hesiod and Aeschylus, she lived and died on an island named Sarpedon, here her myth originated as part of the Greeks religion. Medusa to me, is the pinnacle of mythology, a mix of imaginary creatures and part human female who’s full of anger and bitterness but being part human helps us all to relate her. In my opinion, I don’t think that Medusa would have captured our imagination if she were just a snake that turned gazers to stone, it needed a human element to turn her into the legend that she was then, and still is today. Like Medusa, I believe that all good mythical creatures should have an element of human traits that we can all relate to, I also believe that one should not only fear the creature but also to be able to understand a little of its own anguish and pain, and by doing so, makes a richer, more interesting creature that one can feel something for, other than just fear and dread.
 
Author Information
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I now live in a small picturesque village called Penton Grafton in Hampshire, which consists a large duck pond, a village green where cricket is played most Sundays during the summer and a 14th century church. Penton Grafton is about four miles away from our nearest large town of Andover. Andover is briefly mentioned in my book.
One of seven children and a son of a farmer, I spent all my childhood playing in the countryside. I was born in the same house that my parents lived in for all their married life. Unfortunately, I had very pour education. That, added to the fact that I suffer from dyslexia, meant that I didn’t just struggle with the written word all of my life, but I also had to work twice as hard as others in many aspect of life. That said, I have never allowed it to hold me back from anything I wanted to achieve. I’m now retired but before that, I was a Managing/production director of company that made armoured and stretched luxury limousines for royals and dignitaries, mainly in the Middle East. I spent the best part of fifteen years travelling the world on business and met many of the royals as well as famous celebrities. Since retiring, I took a two year full time collage course in countryside conservation which is a subject that I’m very passionate about and despite my disorder, I achieved top grades and best student of the year.
Between the Darkness and the Light is my first novel but I’m now in the process of writing a sequel, my motivation for this book comes in two parts. Firstly, to become a published author has been on my bucket list for years now. I’ve always envied anyone who could write, especially writers like Terry Brooks, who have the skill to capture a moment in time and develop such interesting strong characters, so, I needed to prove to myself that someday I could write a novel. Dyslexia can be a very debilitating condition which is often overlooked, so I wanted to prove not just to myself but to others that suffer from it, that if they really worked at it, they could do the same and nothing should hold them back from reaching their own potential. I managed to achieve more than most and much more than I had hoped; but it has been a long hard uphill battle.
Secondly, I have a passion for nature and although my book is fantasy it is set in the here and now. The message I wish to get across to my readers (especially teenagers) is that we must start caring for the world in which we live. One of the main reason for choosing a teenager as the main character was to try and take others of the same age on a journey of discovery but with a teenage prospective, his first love, his new-found passion for nature and other living beings; but more importantly, discovering himself. What makes my book important to me are the characters and the location in which my book is set. Most of my characters are a mix of people that I know or have known in the past, although the people I know are interesting characters in their own right, it was fun putting them all in a mixing pot and creating new and more interesting characters. The location is set in and around the town of Whitchurch, an area where I was born and raised, the woodland was where I used to play as a child, there’re both places I still hold very dear to my heart.
The whole story of my book is set around one teenaged character (Henry Harris). Henry a confused, lazy and often very moody young man and now having left full education he has no idea what he wants from life. I’m sure most, if not all teenaged readers can relate to him, especially his relationship with his family. Henry eventually finds himself but only with the help, support and love from those that care for him most. The only message I wish to get across to teenagers is, that they don’t have to face life’s trials alone, if they have family and friends that love them and support them there is nothing in this world that they couldn’t get through.
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