Published by Month9Books on May 29, 2018
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy & Magic
Purity cannot abide the darkness.
It’s been two years since Ellison defeated her stepsisters and sent her evil stepmother back into the Abyss.
Though she’s learning to control her dark magic and has spent time traveling with Prince William and bringing peace to the kingdom, one fact remains. She is a necromancer and he is a paladin of light. And so, the king refuses to give his blessing for them to marry.
To appease his father, William has begun to avoid her. But when even her younger brother Edward grows distant, Ellison learns her mother’s spirit has been visiting Edward in secret, threatening to overwhelm him with her own loneliness and longing. When Ellison accidentally touches her mother’s spirit, her tainted touch condemns her mother’s spirit to eternal damnation.
Ellison resolves to descend into hell to save her mother’s soul and bring her physical body back to the world of the living. William hopes this good deed will bring Ellison into favor and finally allow them to be wed.
But the journey through hell is fraught with peril. Temptations abound and the demons Ellison sent back to the Abyss are thirsty for revenge.
Evil cannot be defeated without sacrifice—but when that sacrifice means choosing between the ones Ellison loves and her very own life, how far is she willing to go to make her family whole again?
Today I have author F.M. Boughan here to chat about her newest book, Cinderella’s Inferno. Welcome Faith!
Describe Cinderella’s Inferno in a tweet (140 characters or less)
Ellison vows to save her mother’s soul from damnation in this loose retelling of Dante’s Inferno, a sequel to CINDERELLA, NECROMANCER.
What is something we would be surprised to learn about Ellison?
Besides what you’ll learn in the book? Hmm… oh! It occurs to me that I haven’t mentioned this anywhere: Contrary to the tradition of the animated-version of the character (you know what I’m talking about!), Ellison is not a great singer. She’s not even very good. In fact, she sounds kind of like a dying waterfowl. It’s not her fault, it’s genetic—her father is a terrible singer, too.
What was different about writing this sequel, from writing Cinderella, Necromancer
Like with writing any sequel, the writer enters the story with the world already formed (to a degree). So instead of shaping the world for my characters as I created the story, I already had a world and needed to shape the story to fit inside of it, which made for a more systematic approach to managing the plot. It was also both fun and challenging to tackle a retelling of an epic poem that may be less familiar to readers than the fairy-tale retelling from the first book.
What is one magical ability you would like to have?
Telekinesis! Do I want to walk all the way to the coffee maker to refill my mug? Or push my heavy vacuum instead of sit on the couch and watch YouTube? Heck, no! I’ll gladly take a magical excuse to be lazy!
What are some trends you are loving (or hating) right now in young adult fiction?
There’s definitely been an increase in geek-centric stories (for example: Queens of Geek, Kat and Meg Conquer the World) and insta-famous or social media themed stories (for example: #famous, Follow Me Back), which I love! Nerds unite!
If we had an author talent show, what would your talent be?
Well, I’m a semi-pro bellydance fusion artist, so I’m ready to go! Tell me when and where and I’ll be there! 😉
Anger flared in my belly and unbalanced my deep crouch. My toe caught on the front of my skirt and I toppled forward to land directly in front of the closed gate. No longer hidden by the hedge, I held a quiet hope that the fumble had gone unnoticed. But when I glanced up to regard my family, Edward gaped as though he had forgotten my presence at all, and my mother—oh, my dear and most precious mother—was not pleased to see me. If she had any reaction at all, I might have called it … anger. Or was it blame?
“Ella, go back,” Edward pleaded.
“Mother, please,” I breathed. She didn’t speak to me but the air around her shimmering form darkened. The dulled brightness of her spirit dimmed further, and I stared in alarm as I rose to my feet.
“No, Ella. Go.” Edward took a step toward me as I found myself pressed into the iron gate. My trembling fingers caught the latch and raised it. My mother’s spirit, faded and stark, lifted her palms toward me—not beckoning, but forbidding.
“Why don’t you want me?” My voice cracked, and I choked on the words as I stepped through onto hallowed ground. “Why doesn’t anyone want me?”
Excerpt from Chapter 6, “The Request”
The vapor, with the eagerness of a gusting wind, vanished and reappeared, then wrapped around the heads of the halberds and tossed them aside. The guards, still gripping their weapons, cried out in alarm and lurched back from their posts. They tumbled to the floor, as did their useless implements. I thought the clatter might bring more guards, so I called the formless spirit back to me without delay.
Guilt panged in my chest as the shimmering vapor swirled around my wrists, lending me strength. I knew I shouldn’t use my powers in such a way—for myself, to remove obstacles that weren’t a direct threat to my well-being—but I did not do this for myself. I had a plan to set right what I had seen in the graveyard.
With spirit-strengthened limbs, I placed both hands on the towering doors of the Great Hall and pushed. They gave way under the pressure of my palms and swung open.
After a beat of silent shock, the men seated at the long dining table leaped to their feet nearly as one. Confusion reflected on every face but that of my beloved. His shone with a secret smile, though restrained in the presence of his father. My heart skipped as a stone across still waters. Had he expected I might find a way to invite myself to dinner?
“What is the meaning of this intrusion?” The king’s voice boomed throughout the room as his gaze bore into mine. “Who allowed her in here? Guards!”
“You’ll find that the men who were stationed outside those doors are indisposed.” I turned my address from His Majesty to William and stepped toward him, though he remained in place at the table.
I knew what the king would say even before I spoke, but it was not our monarch’s assistance I had come to beg.
“William,” I said, an urgency creeping into my voice, “I have need of you.”
Other Books in the Cinderella, Necromancer Series
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
I enjoyed getting to know your book and thanks for the chance to win 🙂
Maria A. Malaveci
I absolutely love the cover!
Purity is an amazing character and am anxious to read her story.
I read the first one and it was a very unique take on Cinderella.
Looking forward to reading Cinderellas Inferno! Thank you
Great interview and beautiful cover, thanks for sharing
I agree with F.M. – Nerds Unite!