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Genre – Middle Grade Fantasy

Rating – G

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If you could travel in a Time Machine would you go back to the past or into the future? I would go into the past. I’d want to see what it was like when the great asteroid hit the earth, or when the pyramids were built, or when Napoleon was in power, or to be there when my ancestor landed in Canada.

If you could invite any 5 people to dinner who would you choose? Barack Obama (because I greatly admire him), Justin Bieber (because he’s awww, so cute and talented) Stephen Harper (since he’s our prime minister), Brad Pitt (because he’s hot), and Julia Roberts (so I wouldn’t be surrounded by all guys).

If you were stranded on a desert island what 3 things would you want with you? My glasses so I could see and start a fire, a knife so I could cut things, and a fishing rod.

What is one book everyone should read? Anne of Green Gables. Anne Shirley convinced me writing was a cool thing to do.

If you were a superhero what would your name be? Super-Philanthropist. I know, it’s dumb, but I always wanted to be a philanthropist. It’s power. Just think of it – handing out money to anyone who needs it like Bill Gates does. I’d love it.

If you could have any superpower what would you choose? To brainwash evil people so they turn their lives around.

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? Rocky Road. I love the chocolate and the chewy nuts – texture.

If you could meet one person who has died who would you choose? Pierre Trudeau, our past prime minister. He was so utterly brilliant and didn’t care what people thought of him.

What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? A Spanish omelette with salsa. Mmm.

Night owl, or early bird? Oh, definitely early bird. I get up at five AM to write. That’s when my head is clearest. I can barely stay awake at night to read which is why it takes me a long time to read a book.

One food you would never eat? Liver. Yuck. I had it once by accident at a friend’s place thinking it was chicken. Boy, was I ever surprised. So were they when I nearly threw up on their new linoleum floor.

Pet Peeves? Gossips and bullies.

Skittles or M&Ms? Depends on what kind of mood I’m in. I really like sour food, but I like chocolate too. It’s the sort of thing I only eat around Halloween.

Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book. You should read it because it’s powerful and because unicorns have to endure terrible things, yet they win in the end. Besides, you’ll love Darius. I love Darius. I cry every time I read that darn book because of Darius. There is no greater creature in the world than Darius. He’s like a Mahatma Ghandi or a Mother Theresa. His name means ‘doer of good’, and that’s exactly what he does. Sigh.

Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects? I finished a YA Paranormal a couple of months ago and am waiting for a reply to my submission. It’s a great story about a fourteen-year-old child prodigy in classical violin growing up in the small town of Hope, B.C. Her best friend is a Chinese girl adopted into a white family. They both struggle to fit in. Then this fiddler comes to town and bewitches everyone. And only Kira has it figured out it’s her who’s been vandalizing the town, leaving dead and gutted birds as a calling card.

I’m also working feverishly to rewrite the second Shadow of the Unicorn novel.

What inspired you to want to become a writer? I thought it would be neat to publish a book when I was a teenager, but I also loved music and medicine. Music won out for a long time. After a master’s degree in music, I free-lanced, playing piano in restaurants and composing music. Eventually, I drifted into teaching and taught classroom music in Vancouver for over twenty years. That’s where I learned I was a good storyteller. The kids really behaved just so they could hear some tale I made up on the spot at the end of class. Then after my kids were born, I decided to take a couple of years off of teaching until they were in school. And that’s when I began to write, and I’ve never looked back. And, BTW, I quit teaching to stay home and write two days after receiving my first publishing contract.

Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published. I don’t know yet. I’m still waiting for it to happen. Well, when they sent me my finished book, that was pretty amazing.

If you could jump in to a book, and live in that world.. which would it be? Probably Chronicles of Narnia. I mean, talking animals – how cool is that?

What is your dream cast for your book? I don’t have one. They’re mostly unicorns.

What was your favorite book when you were a child/teen? I really loved the Lucy Maude Montgomery series, lots of Victoria Holt, Agatha Christy, and James Michener. And when I was really small – Curious George and Clifford the Big Red Dog.

Is there a song you could list as the theme song for your book or any of your characters? No, but I’ve sat down and started writing one a couple of times. Maybe it’ll come out one of these days if I can find a minute.

What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors? Write from the heart and write what’s true to you. Make your readers feel everything in great depth. Make them see themselves in your characters. Make them laugh. Make them cry.

Book description:

A loud, hissing sound filled the air. The unicorns looked up, their eyes filled with horror.

Azaria, a unicorn colt, is intrigued when the young clairvoyant dinosaur, Darius, foresees a terrifying change in the world. When a giant fireball smashes into the earth, the unicorns struggle to survive the hurricanes and starvation that follow. Danger of a more sinister nature threatens when the creatures-that-walk-on-two-legs settle in the valley and their leader, Ishmael, discovers the healing power of the unicorns’ horns. Azaria, now a young stallion, must use his wits to save the herd from complete extinction.