Monday, July 29, 2013

Trial by Fire by Margarita Gakis: Character Interview and Excerpt


CHARACTER INTERVIEW with main character from Trial by Fire – Jade.

[Author notes - I imagine this interview taking place over the phone, breaking the fourth wall between reality and fiction]
Name? Jade

Occupation? Well I just found out I’m a witch, so, witch? Can I put that? If not I guess I’ll put my former job which is a statistical analyst.

Age? Why so pushy with the questions? Look, I’m old enough to drink in all of North America and young enough to not be worried about RRSPs. Yet.

Tell us about your family.

Should I lie down on a couch for this? Maybe you want to pull out some inkblots or something? I don’t really get along with them. Isn’t that what most people say? You can’t pick your family? Well, you can’t. If I could, I would’ve… well not picked them for sure. My mom was… disinterested to say the least and my dad… drank. A lot. Or drinks, I guess since he’s probably drinking right now. It’s 5 o’clock somewhere. They’ll probably dig him up a hundred years after he dies and find him perfectly preserved and smelling of vodka.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Just… free. Out of the house. In charge of my life. Stable. Yeah, stable’s a good word. I don’t want to be living by someone’s else’s whim.

If you could apologize to someone in your past, who would it be?

Lily. For… everything. For not knowing when to back down. For never being able to say no to her. For giving in. For making a mess out of everything. I’m doing my best now. I’m trying to… make it all worth it. I don’t think it will ever be enough. I can’t say I’m sorry enough. 

Can you elaborate on that?


What would we find under your bed?

Recently, I’ve kind of found myself the owner of this lizard thing? His name is Bruce. He likes to be under my bed. Or in my closet. I just got him. Or rather, he got me, I guess. Basically, I think someone flushed him down the toilet and in our coven and a lot of crap [no pun intended] goes down too. It was a bad combination of him and magic stuff and now he’s like… big and different. And green. So I call him Bruce Banner. Oh, and my special shoebox. I keep stuff in there. It goes everywhere I go.

What makes you happy?

Well, I like a good cup of coffee when it’s fresh out of the pot and almost a little too hot. I like those days that your jeans fit really well and it’s not just because you haven’t washed them in too long. I like when I find a parking spot close at the mall even though I’m going to have to walk around when I get there. I really like when I’m done my workout and I don’t have to do it again for another day. I mean, those are all things that I like. I guess I’m happy when they happen. [Pause] I don’t quite know what you mean.

You just won a huge lottery what is the first thing you'll buy?

How much does a butler cost? Can you just buy one? Straight out for 40 years? Someone to make sure I have my lunch as I leave for work and put my keys in the same place every day. And gas up the car. I hate gassing up the car. And he can answer the door too and we can pretend I’m not at home when it’s someone I don’t like. He’ll say, “I’m sorry, Mistress Jade is not in residence at the moment,” when really, EVERYONE knows you’re at home, but short of calling out your butler as a liar, what can people do?

What book are you reading now?

I got these demon grimoires from Paris. He’s kind of my boss I guess. He runs the coven and he’s helping me learn magic. No one else in the coven does demon magic. They think it’s taboo or something. But I like it. It takes a while to get through though. The books give you headaches if you read them for too long. Paris doesn’t like to work on demon magic too much either. He’s got some issues with it.

What was the scariest moment of your life?

I don’t… I don’t like to talk about that. I… you shouldn’t ask questions like that.

What one word best describes you?


Anything else?

Uh, listen, it’s probably for the best if you don’t mention the lizard thing to too many people. No one knows I have him right now. He’s not dangerous. I don’t think. But just…you know. Be discrete?

Trial by Fire
Covencraft Book One

Margarita Gakis

Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal

Publisher: Fable Press

Date of Publication:  6/25/2013

ISBN: 978-1-939897-03-9


Number of pages: 325

Word Count:  84,000

Cover Artist: Steven Novak

Book Description:

Jade leads a structured life:

Routine job.
Caffeine addiction.
No serious relationships.
And now, she can spontaneously set things on fire with her mind.

Well... perhaps “normal” was never in the cards for her. As she questions her own sanity and spirals out of control, a man appears on her doorstep and tells her that, like him, she’s a witch.

Pulled in all directions, her unbridled magic draws dangerous attention and Jade wonders if she’s made the worst mistake of her life by joining a coven, or if she’ll even live long enough to regret it.

Paris waited for a moment and followed Jade out of the grocery store, staying far enough behind to not spook her. She started the walk back to her apartment, her grocery bags pulling down on her arms, laden with bananas, coffee cream and some other odds and ends he couldn’t quite see. Even with the bags, she kept a brisk pace, not expending any extra motion other than her determined forward walk.

She halted suddenly and turned around. Paris spat out the quickest spell he could think of, an obfuscation spell, one he hadn’t used since he was nine when he tried to sneak by his mother with a bag of cookies. The spell hadn’t worked on his mother - his spells rarely did work on her - but it seemed to work on Jade. She stared intently at the space where he stood, but not directly at him. Most people would stop, look and then move on. But she was doggedly determined, staring at him for long enough that he thought she certainly must see him. Surprisingly, none of her magic appeared to slink out of her toward him. It darted all around her, like confused and abstract fireworks - jarring and unfocused - but nothing came close to him. It was chaotic, distracted. It reminded him of watching a hungry child find a buffet of treats - all excitable energy and frenzy but no intelligence about it.

Jade finally turned and started walking again, her first few steps slow and reluctant but then speeding up and returning to her normal pace. He breathed out slowly, waited a moment longer and followed. Jade’s power jumped around as she walked, darting into corners, pulling ahead of her, reaching behind her. At one point, it came dangerously close to him, and he wondered if he would have to use another spell. He carefully pulled his own circle of energy back, folding it closer to himself than he usually kept it. Her power danced around, like it was looking for him, and then curled back toward her. He realized that was probably how she sensed him before. He hadn’t felt it, but her power must have brushed up against his, and somehow she had known.

A car backfired, and although she gave no outward notice, she must have been startled. He saw her power jump out of her, a dark indigo flash, and the streetlight

above her exploded. She stopped and glared up at the streetlight as glass and sparks showered down a few feet in front of her. Jade set her jaw tightly as she looked at the damage murderously. She shook her head sharply and continued walking. Like a distracted puppy, her power skipped along in front of her, unconcerned and oblivious.

About the Author:

Margarita loves the art, creativity and romanticism of storytelling. Sometimes, however, the act of putting pen to paper proves challenging, elusive. She develops genuine, relatable characters which grow in the hearts of her readers. From that foundation, the stories flourish into a warm friend.

She enjoys pursuits which blur the lines between the analytical and creative sides of her brain. This includes her day job in electronic data management, where she uses her creativity to solve logical problems, and also her lessons learning to play the cello, where she finds beauty in the structure of music and the instrument. She believes there is a place for both logic and imagination to work together. When they do, the results are magical.

Margarita has a special spot in her heart for dogs and lives with three of them. It can be a little overwhelming but the quality snuggle time makes up for it.

Margarita lives in Calgary, Alberta with her family.

Twitter:  @margaritagakis


July 29 Interview 
Laurie's Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews

 July 29 Interview
The Official Blog of A.C. James

July 30 Spotlight
3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too!

July 31 Interview
A Writer's Mind- 

5 Kindle ecopies of Trial by Fire




Eva Millien said...

Thanks for sharing Trial By Fire and the giveaway. This book definitely belongs on my bookshelf. evamillien at gmail dot com

Chris Kruk said...

What a great find for me. It is on my to read list

Grandma to Twins + One said...

This book has my attention. I've put it to the top of my TBR list! Thanks for the interview and giveaway!! I LOVE Jade's attitude!

Autumn said...

LOVEDDDDDDDDDDD the character interview. Jade actually had me giggling with her lizard that should not be mentioned lol. Thank you for the giveaway! And the book sounds amazing, will be adding it to my list. :D

Erika R said...

SO would love to win this!! Looks amazing thanks for sharing and the giveaway!

erikalrhodes at gmail dot com

Valerie R said...

Has been added to my TBR!! Can't wait.. thanks for giveaway!!


this book so interesting, I would love to read it