Hello, and welcome to this stop on the Blood of the Seer Book Tour! For this post, the author, C.M. Banschbach, shares what inspired The Dragon Keep Chronicles, and how she hopes readers can be blessed and touched by the story.
Book themes and inspiration
The story that would become the Dragon Keep Chronicles took me completely by surprise my senior year of college. I was headed to my internship at a nearby hospital one foggy morning considering, as any good writer might, how it would be to get out and walk the woods in the fog.
And just like that, the image of a horse and rider picking their careful way down a foggy mountainside popped into my head. I didn’t know much about him, other than his name was Rhys MacDuffy, he was estranged from his family, and he did not want to be making that trip.
So of course, once I got home from work that day, I grabbed my laptop and started writing the first scene of the book which largely stayed intact through edits and publication.
And it turned into something which I could never have predicted.
It became a story of redemption. A story of family and bonds. And a story of forgiveness.
It a lot of different ways, it became something of my own story. It didn’t take long before I realized what Rhys was teaching me. That I hadn’t processed some of my own hurts as much as I thought I had. They were all there on the page, in plain view in his story.
There will be hurt and betrayal from those you trusted. It knocks you down, but there are those who will rise up around you and build a family. Family does not always mean blood. Does not always mean those people you’ve known the longest. In Rhys’s case, his family becomes those he’s rescued or given a second chance to, those he was willing to look a little deeper into and see they still had something to offer when the world had turned against them. (In his case, a band of morally grey merry men that we all still love.)
And forgiveness is hard. There is a hurt and betrayal Rhys is holding on to, quite will within his rights to, and is reluctant to give it up. It’s not as easy as saying the words “I forgive you.” But again and again, he’s faced with the person who betrayed him years before the story begins, and the question of forgiveness.
In so many stories you see forgiveness dished out as easily as pie. Everything wraps up in a nice bow and everyone lives happily ever after. But personal experience says it’s not that easy. And I wanted to reflect that. Rhys is certainly stubborn enough to keep holding a grudge…It’s time, it’s willingness to forgive, it’s working through grief and anger first.
And through it all, the knowledge that he can’t truly push on and start living and healing without re-acknowledging a higher power once more.
This is a story that is still very near to my heart as some of my own scars became some of Rhys’s scars. He’s a little more stabby and angry than I am, but we both got through it all. He helped me to heal a little, and I hope that maybe, this character so full of anger, loyalty, sadness, and the drive to protect those he loves, could do the same for someone else.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
C.M. Banschbach is a native Texan and would make an excellent hobbit if she wasn’t so tall. She’s an overall dork, pizza addict, and fangirl. When not writing fantasy stories packed full of adventure and snark, she works as a pediatric Physical Therapist where she happily embraces the fact that she never actually has to grow up. She writes clean YA/MG fantasy-adventure as Claire M. Banschbach
Instagram: @cmbanschbach (https://www.instagram.com/cmbanschbach/)
Facebook: @cmbanschbach (https://www.facebook.com/cmbanschbach)
Pinterest: @clairebanschbach (https://www.pinterest.com/clairebanschbach)
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ABOUT THE BOOK
A blood curse.
A shadow world.
An indomitable evil.
A forgotten bond.
Banished for a crime he didn’t commit, Rhys MacDuffy risked his life to rescue the little brother he no longer could claim as his own. Sean, the Seer of Clan MacDuffy, returns from his ordeal to war between the Clans and Lord Adam Barkley. Moreover, the Clan Lords refuse to lift the exile on Rhys. No outcast has ever been forgiven.
But the druids who held Sean captive have taken the key to controlling his powers—his blood. Rhys determines to keep his brother safe no matter the cost. Heedless of the war, he leads his rowdy band of Mountain Brigands on a hunt to destroy the druids before they destroy Sean with their dark magic.
The druids force Sean into a shadow world full of demons and danger, where their menacing god Deronis can consume him. Yet Rhys is able to follow Sean into the other world. There they discover an older magic that might be the key to stopping the druids.
The bond of brotherhood between Rhys and Sean runs deep. But is it strong enough to stand against the druid’s blood god?
Autographed paperback: https://uncommonuniverses.com/product/blood-of-the-seer-autographed-paperback/
Universal buy link for Nook/Kobo/etc.: https://books2read.com/u/3JXGxP
February 9th: C.M. Banschbach, The story of The Dragon Keep Chronicles
February 9th: Katie Phillips, Blood of the Seer spotlight
February 11th: C.M. Banschbach, Interview with Rhys
February 12th: Jordan Rainbolt, Blood of the Seer feature post
February 14th: Becky Gaines, Blood of the Seer spotlight
February 16th: C.M. Banschbach, Blood of the Seer as gifs
February 16th: Abigail McKenna, Blood of the Seer book review
February 18th: C.M. Banschbach, Interview with Sean MacDuffy
February 19th: Denica McCall, Interview with C.M. Banschbach
February 22nd: C.M. Banschbach, Interview with Alan MacDuffy