Monday, February 18, 2013

Red Madrassa by Terah Edum: Interview, Excerpt and Review


Red Madrassa by Terah Edun

A magical accident threw them together. But when Fate holds all the cards, it can be impossible to tell the difference between pure chance and Destiny...

The Madrassa, a magical school for mage practitioners, is the stuff of legend. With selective entrance exams and quotas for only the most advanced of mage children, it's almost impossible to attend.

When Allorna, a guardian trainee for the royal family, ends up on the doorstep of the citadel on the eve of the final day of a recruitment ceremony, she decides it must be fate.

She was sure she knew the path her life would take before she enrolled. But sometimes life has a way of throwing in magical curveballs and strange friends, just to see if you’ll trip up.

Oh, and one of those friends is a mage accused of murder, another is a slightly psychotic dragon, the third a healer facing an existential crisis, and the last is a female storm-caller with more hidden secrets than a thief lord.

Do they all belong at the new school they call home?

Sitara was curious to learn how they all had arrived at the Madrassa. "I know Vedaris and I were in the healer's ward, and I was brought in by a group of guys. But the last two weeks before that is just a blur," she murmured.
Sidimo angled his head as he sat back with a shrug, "How do you know that it's just two weeks that you're missing?"
            Sitara replied, "Clan Feast Day was a bit more than two weeks before, and I remember being out in the night market with my sister. After that everything is fuzzy."
"Fair enough," replied Sidimo."It wasn't that eventful, really. Just before we found you, all I remember thinking is that the mountainside was coming down on us."
" Really, Sidi!" chided Allorna. "There were a few small rocks tumbling down the mountain, that was all. When we rounded the bend, there you were, slumped on the ground."
            "Bend? What bend?".
Shifting anxiously, Maride muttered, "Near the Abbas gate? It's where we came through."
Sitara didn't notice his hesitation, but Vedaris frowned, thinking, Hasn't the Abbas been closed for decades?
"So the three of you came through the gate, and I fell down a cliff?" Sitara asked with exasperation.
"As far as we know, yes," replied Allorna.
            "Why don't we go check out this cliff?" Vedaris suggested.
Sitara cocked her head and said, "You know, that's not a bad idea. Maybe we'll find some clues as to how I got there."
Maride looked as if he were about to be sick.
            "Good point. The Abbas gate isn't that far away," Allorna replied. So they got up—Maride reluctantly—and hiked out of the Citadel, then down through the town, retracing the steps of that fateful journey a few weeks before. They walked quietly, everyone drifting off into their own thoughts.
            When they started up the white path to the ledge, Sitara and Vedaris, who hadn't made that journey before (at least not consciously, in Sitara's case), saw that trees and dead limbs partially obscured the area from prying eyes. When they arrived at the ledge, a trail of disturbed brush and dirt clearly marked the path of Sitara's tumble. She remarked as she looked off to the right, "It looks like this ledge slopes upward. Mind if we follow it for a bit to see where it leads?"
            No one minded, so they did, and soon came upon the Abbas portalway. Making only a few comments, they walked past it, continuing along the upward slope; it was curving back around the village toward the Madrassa. When they turned a sharp corner they found, to their surprise, the very edge of the Ameles Forest.


This was a very enjoyable read for me after I got into it a little bit.  At first, it was a little iffy for me because I had a difficult time during the character introductions because I didn’t particularly care much about them until I began to know them better after arriving at the Madrassa.  It didn’t help that some names seemed too similar to me.  The author introduces the main characters upfront through short scenes.  The scenes are well-written and interesting but each was different, seemingly unrelated to the others, and I didn’t see connections that later would become relevant. 
Once the five arrive at their destination, whether by fate or chance, I began to really feel the love for this book.  The story is sometimes humorous, but mostly just interesting because of the fantastic imagination and creativity that it took to keep it moving along quickly. Simultaneously, Ms. Edum is deftly building a setting, background and customs that are unique but seem believable given the world she is creating.  I am very much looking forward to the next adventure.
This book was given to me by the author in exchange for my honest review.
Reviewed by Laurie-J

Author Terah Edun

Terah Edun is a young adult  fantasy writer born and raised in the Atlanta metropolitan area, who transplanted to the Northeast region for college, and now lives in South Sudan. She writes the stories that she always loved to read as a young girl.

She prefers tales of adventure, magic, fellowship and courtship – in other words high fantasy. But she’s not adverse to the occasional contemporary fantasy coming her way. Sometimes you’ll see cloaks, daggers, independent and strong girls, independent and strong guys, sweet and soft spoken girls, sweet and soft spoken guys, markets, cute guys, sparkly magic and irritatingly know-it-all boys. The book she’s currently working on is SWORN TO RAISE,  the first in the Courtlight series.

Outside of writing, she’s a international development professional with a penchant for Starbucks.


Who is your favorite author?


Tamora Pierce


What do you think makes a good story?


Action, Adventure, and Magic


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


At first a veterinarian – then a diplomat.


What are your favorite TV shows?


 Scandal and Grimm


What are you passionate about these days?


Ensuring that people around the world have access to basic services and goods.


What do you do to unwind and relax?


 Dance parties!


Morning Person? Or Night Person? How do you know?


Night person; If I don’t get a cup of coffee and at least a good fifteen minutes to myself to check email I get cranky in the morning.


What makes you happy?


Reading and friendship.


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


A condo in Washington D.C.

Tour Schedule

Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card & Red Madrassa Ebook

5 Ebooks of Red Madrassa

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

1 comment:

VampedChik said...

Thanks for the excerpt! Definitely checking this book out! :)