5 Aug 2015

The Lion's Pride by Natalie Crown

The Lion's Pride by Natalie Crown
YA Fantasy/Alternate World
Released August 2.
This is the second book in the The Semei Trilogy.
Check out the tour page for the full schedule.
Lionspride1 'She is the reason your friends are dead. She should pay the price for that betrayal.'
Not long ago Kammy had led a simple existence, stuck on an island, with only her Gran and Jamie to care about. Now she knows she is half Semei and of royal blood, in possession of an item that could bring about a war that would destroy the world, and so the worlds within it. She cannot go back and, despite everything, she does not want to.But she is haunted by the man - the king - that shadows her.Bagor and his army wait. In three days he will march into Emire and he will take everything.Kammy and her friends have one hope. They must find Danorrah; a cursed city, lost to the memory of all. Bagor will hunt them, every step of the way, determined to claim the Key and to claim her. It is all well and good that Kammy does not want to go back to her old life, but she will need the blessing of the Mother if she is to elude Bagor and hang on to her new one.

Check out The Wolf's Cry, Book One of The Semei Trilogy

Can you tell us a little about your latest book?
The Lion’s Pride is the second book in the Semei Trilogy. It picks up right where The Wolf’s Cry left off. Bagor and his army attacked Emire, and there looks to be no way out for our heroes. Of course, the story does not end at the start. Kammy, Jad, and the others have to find a way to escape Bagor once again, for he simply cannot claim the Key that they carry.
But they cannot run forever, and so they seek the lost city of Danorrah. If Bagor believes that there is a third layer, another world within the earth, then what if they could find it first? Could they then take the fight to Bagor, using whatever weapon it is that rests there?

If it was made into a movie, who would you like to play the main characters?
Oh man, I am so rubbish at this kind of question.
I think I’d like relative unknowns to play the mains. I’ve always pictured Idris Elba as Seeve, and I’d love to get Natalie Dormer in there somehow. Maybe as Ria?
And let’s throw in Bob Morley and Eliza Taylor. I don’t know who they could play, but hey...I’d get to meet them both at the premiere so I don’t care!

Where is the novel set and why did you choose to set it there?
The Lion’s Pride is set in a layer of the earth beneath our own. This layer is inhabited by a race of shapeshifters, called the Semei, and by five great Crystals. These five Crystals were created by the Mother, and sustain the life within all layers of the earth.
Why did I choose to set it there? Without sounding too cliche, I didn’t really choose it. It’s just kind of how my ideas unfolded!

What is it about this genre that appeals to you so much?

The escapism of fantasy has always appealed me. I also love dramatic action, and epic sequences. When writing or reading fantasy, you have an abundance of all that.
Fantasy fiction, to me, has all the reality of real life, with an added dollop of imagination and magic.

How do you come up with character names?
Randomly! I don’t tend to look for any deep meaning. Most of the time, the names just come to me. I sometimes have to try a few out first though. In old drafts I had a character called Layla. The name never felt right to me, but I kept using it while drafting because I couldn’t find the right name. Then, one very unremarkable day, I realised that Layla should be called Tayah. And that was that.

Name one of your all-time favourite books?
The Empire Trilogy,by Raymond E Feist. Mara of the Acoma forever. Everyone go read it please.

Who, or what, inspires you?
Other than books/games/tv shows/films?
Places of natural beauty, and historical locations. History plays a big part in inspiring a lot of my ideas, even if very loosely. I like to base my books in reality, and there are so many historical stories out there to play with. And if you take yourself away to a deep forest, or a distant mountain range...you can almost imagine that you have stepped back in time and the inspiration comes two-fold.

Where is your favourite place to write?
In Italy! I’m very lucky to have a place that I can stay every year. It overlooks mountains in the south of Italy and it’s stunning.

Tell us a random fact about yourself.

Tying into the above, I’m half Italian - and I tell everyone about it because my love for Italy knows no bounds. Cue all my friends rolling their eyes at this being my random fact.

I grew up in a village called Swilland, in the countryside of Suffolk, England. There wasn’t much around, other than farms and fields, but for the most part I loved it, and I still do. I’m a passionate person by nature. I don’t just LIKE things, I LOVE things. Whether it’s a book, a film, or a sports team. Once I decide to enjoy something, I enjoy it to the MAX.
I’m a terrible cook. I prioritise essential social media work over keeping my flat tidy, because I know best.
Onto my love of reading and, consequently, writing – it was my dad that played a big role in encouraging me to read. He didn’t push me towards books necessarily; he simply read a lot himself. Then I would pick up his books and read them after him. I was reading high and epic fantasy from a very young age. I guess that might explain why I have always loved adventure stories with magic and intrigue and princes and princesses in.
I was aware that I wanted to ‘be a writer’ from a very young age. I was convinced I would be the first best seller that hadn’t reached double figures in age yet! I wrote about the Danshees, furry creatures that lived through a mirror. I wrote about a Sand Bottle that transported a boy into a world of magic. I wrote about a sick girl finding a music boy that healed her, but transported her back in time. (Wow, I always have loved alternate universes…)
When I was eight I wrote my first novel called The Land of No Return. Despite the title, I am determined to return to it one day. I feel like I owe it to my past self. So, as you can see, I have always been writing. There have been times when I have gone weeks without scratching down a word. Then there are days where I churn out multiple chapters and only my body’s silly desire for sleep and/or food can stop me.
I write because I enjoy it. I write fantasy because I enjoy it. I try my hardest to put something of myself into my writing. I like to think my characters have depth, I like to think that my fantasy worlds reflect upon the real world in some way. You guys will be the judge of that but even if you don’t agree I know that I at least try and I can do no more than that.
These days I live in North London and I love it. I work full time and London is a hectic city. Juggling work, writing and a social life is tough but nobody is forcing me to do it so I can’t complain. The dream is that writing will be my career one day but it doesn’t matter if I never quite make it. I love writing too much to ever pack it in.
I am desperate to get a dog. My mum suspects I miss my cats at home more than I miss her. I am a devout Arsenal/Ferrari/Rafael Nadal fan. I get all mad when confronted with a case of social injustice and then I get all mad when people take the fight for social justice too far. I mostly keep those thoughts to myself and simmer with rage. I watch good TV and bad TV, because I can. What I can’t do is enjoy bad books (subjective opinion of course). I just can’t.
$25 Amazon gift card & copy of The Wolf's Cry or The Lion's Pride in paperback (INT), two (2) additional winners will receive a copy of The Wolf's Cry or The Lion's Pride in paperback (INT)
Ends Aug. 18th
Prizing provided by the author, hosts are in no way responsible.

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This event was organized by CBB Book Promotions.


  1. This was a great post! I look forward to reading both books!

  2. This is a belated thank you message for taking part in the tour! I loved answering the interview questions and hope you enjoyed reading them!

    P.S Your blog banner is gorgeous.

  3. Thanks for stopping by, Krystal! <3
    Natalie, it's a pleasure featuring you on Fiction Dreams. You're welcome any time :) xx


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