Thursday, February 21, 2013

What is Paula Brackston reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Paula Brackston, author of The Winter Witch.

Her entry begins:
I’ve been thinking about the expectations I have of books, and how I take different things from different types of novels. I don’t anticipate that I will get everything I desire from one book. It does happen, but rarely.

Some books I read for the colour and intensity of the story – perhaps a sweeping setting (The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penny) or a dramatic plot (The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell). With these I want to experience something and somewhere way outside myself, beyond my own experience (either past or likely future).

Some books I read for the power of the characters, whether good (Merivel by Rose Tremain), or bad (As Meat Loves Salt by Maria McCann). Now I want to go somewhere deep inside myself. I don’t want to merely empathise with these characters, while I’m reading the story I want to become them.

Some books I read for tone and mood; for the way they move and stimulate me. Paul Torday and Sue Townsend to make me laugh, for instance, Sebastian Faulks to make me cry, George RR Martin...[read on]
About The Winter Witch, from the publisher:
New York Times bestselling author Paula Brackston transports readers to the windswept mountains of Wales in The Winter Witch, an enthralling tale of love and magic.

In her small early nineteenth century Welsh town, there is no one quite like Morgana. She is small and quick and pretty enough to attract a suitor, but there are things that set her apart from other girls. Though her mind is sharp she has not spoken since she was a young girl. Her silence is a mystery, as well as her magic—the household objects that seem to move at her command, the bad luck that visits those who do her ill. Concerned for her safety, her mother is anxious to see Morgana married, and Cai Jenkins, the widowed drover from the far hills who knows nothing of the rumors that swirl around her, seems the best choice.

After her wedding, Morgana is heartbroken at leaving her mother, and wary of this man, whom she does not know, and who will take her away to begin a new life. But she soon falls in love with Cai’s farm and the wild mountains that surround it. Here, where frail humans are at the mercy of the elements, she thrives, her wild nature and her magic blossoming. Cai works to understand the beautiful, half-tamed creature he has chosen for a bride, and slowly, he begins to win Morgana’s affections. It’s not long, however, before her strangeness begins to be remarked upon in her new village. A dark force is at work there—a person who will stop at nothing to turn the townspeople against Morgana, even at the expense of those closest to her. Forced to defend her home, her man, and herself from all comers, Morgana must learn to harness her power, or she will lose everything in this beautifully written, enchanting novel.
Learn more about the book and author at Paula Brackston's website.

Writers Read: Paula Brackston.

--Marshal Zeringue