I’m so fortunate to have several books published through Dingbat Publishing, and one of the awesome perks is getting to know several fellow authors from different genres. Early last month, Dingbat released The Curse Breaker, a young adult fantasy written by debut author April Kelley Jones. I was fascinated to learn that the story was based on a traditional Irish folk tale. I asked April to come and give us a few details about how she took a well-known (at least in Ireland) folk tale and make it her own. I’m so glad she agreed!
An Irish Folktale (with Korean elements)
by April Kelley Jones
As an undergraduate student, I stumbled across a collection of Irish folktales. They made it home with me but soon landed on my bookshelf to be neglected for several years. Fourteen generations have passed since my Irish ancestors immigrated to America, and while that number feels almost uncountable to me, I’ve always held a spot for Ireland in my heart. A couple of years ago for a NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), I decided to pull those folktales off the shelf. I perused several stories before I came upon the one that would serve as a base for The Curse Breaker.
For me, a big part of the fun in writing comes from the challenge of trying to put together a story of seemingly unconnected parts. So, when I sat down to write The Curse Breaker, I decided to see if I could take pieces from 19th-century Irish storytelling and mingle in modern Korean storytelling elements to form a fun story about a teenage girl with magic. Sounds easy, right? There were definitely moments where I sat in front of my computer scratching my head, but for the most part, this story knew where it wanted to go so I just had to follow it. I hope you’ll enjoy meeting Eris and Knox and let me know if you pick up the Korean or Irish tropes I used to tell their story.
Here’s more info about April and The Curse Breaker:
Eris’s sister is missing, and Magic is definitely to blame! Eris knows only Magic can bring her back, but even as a Light Magic born, is she strong enough to save her sister?
Knox is cursed to spend his days as a corpse and his nights trying to find the prophesized girl who can break the curse. If he can’t find her by his 20th birthday, he’ll stay dead forever.
Eris and Knox will discover there are scarier things in their path other than curses and half-truths. If the Queen of the Underworld has her way, everything and everyone will die. The only thing standing in her way is the curse breaker, and Eris will have to choose between saving herself or everyone she loves.
The Curse Breaker can be purchased at Amazon.
April Jones has read, written, or edited her way through numerous fictional worlds. When she’s not teaching or writing, she spends her time trying to learn other languages or keeping her mischievous cat from eating the pet fish. She received her bachelor’s in English and her M.F.A. in creative writing.
A Tennessee native, April currently lives in Michigan with her husband and three children. You can find her poems and short stories published in various literary magazines across the internet and in print. You can also check out her debut novel, The Curse Breaker. For more information visit her website thepathtostory.com
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Welcome to 4F1H, April… and welcome to the wonderful world of Dingbat Publishing.
Ireland is certainly rich in history and heritage… and a considerable degree of interest in various elements of the supernatural.
I think it’s great that you’ve kept that 14-generation lineage intact — it’s important to know one’s roots.
Have you had a chance to visit Ireland?
One of my wife’s nephews went with his wife and they had a blast.
Thank you for such a warm welcome! I haven’t had the chance to visit yet, but it’s high on my list of places to visit soon. It’s such a beautiful country, I can’t wait to see it in person. Who knows, maybe another novel-verse will come out it.
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Welcome to the blog, April! Icertainly have a soft spot for Ireland and I do love a good book about magic. Yours sounds lovely.
Best of luck with all of your works.
Thank you so much! I hope you’ll get a chance to read it soon.
Hi, April! My ancestors on my mother’s side also came from Ireland. We’ve only traced them back to just before the Revolutionary War, but we think the first one came over in the seventeenth century. Best of luck with your book!
Wow! That’s amazing. It’s really fun to learn more about our ancestors, isn’t it?
Wow interesting way your story came together!
Sounds like a great read
Love your cover!
Good luck and God’s blessings
Thank you so much!
Welcome to the blog, April. I love all things Irish and have a touch of Irish in my background.
That’s so neat. Thank you for the warm welcome!
I love Irish folktales. My sister-in-law is Korean. I’ll have to read this soon!
Sorry I’m late to the post. That’s so interesting. Irish folktales are so much fun. Your book sounds fabulous, and I love the cover! Congrats and best wishes!