Magic, Djinn, Ogres, and Sorcerers. Thirteen-year-old Zardi loves to hear stories about fantastical beings, long banned from the kingdom of Arribitha. But anyone caught whispering of their powers will feel the rage of the sultan—a terrifying usurper who, even with his eyes closed, can see all.
When her own beloved sister is captured by the evil ruler, Zardi knows that she must go to any lengths to rescue her. Along with her best friend, Ridhan—a silver-haired, violet-eyed boy of mysterious origins—and an unlikely crew of sailors led by the infamous Captain Sinbad, Zardi ventures forth into strange and wondrous territory with a seemingly impossible mission: to bring magic back to Arribitha and defeat the sultan once and for all.
Hi, and thank you for having me on your blog to talk about my debut novel The Book of Wonders!
You’ve sent me through some questions so here we go.
Top 5 places in Zardi's world you'd like to travel to.
This is quite difficult to answer as a lot of places that my main characters, Zardi and Rhidan, end up visiting in the Book of Wonders aren’t that welcoming mainly because of the person ruling that place! They say writers should be mean to their characters – I have done my best.
Here are the top 5 places I would visit in Zardi’s world but I’d only go if it was guaranteed I could come back. I don’t think I’d last very long – I’m not as brave or resilient as Zardi!
Taraket and Sabra: These cities are a part of the Kingdom of Arribitha and are ruled by an evil tyrant who has banned magic throughout the land. I would love to visit the markets, and see the River Tigress that flows through Arribitha and all the way out to the sea. I think the colours and smells of the land would be amazing.
Desolation Island: This place is filled with strange creatures and dangers [don’t want to give away spoilers] but the island itself is rather beautiful. I liked the idea of having a place that looks beautiful but has a dark underbelly and secrets.
Postremo: A dimension ruled by an egotistical djinni. It is also a dimension that is very much influenced by the future and so I think it would be a really cool place to visit – you’d never know what you’d find.
Mandar: A distant, mysterious kingdom and one that we will hopefully learn more about in future books.
6 favorite Arabian Night tales you've come across in your research.
1 The Fisherman and the Djinni
2 Aladdin and his Wonderful Lamp
3 The Seven Voyages of Sinbad the Sailor
4 The Adventures of Bulukiya
5 The City of Brass
6 The Ebony Horse
1 favorite scene from The Book of Wonders.
One of my favourite scenes from The Book of Wonders involves Zardi and Rhidan trying to catch up with Sinbad after the famous captain gives them some vital information but then abruptly leaves.
Their chase takes them to the top of a massive structure called The Widow Reaper. It is an arch that stretches over the River Tigress and Sinbad’s ship, The Falcon, is fleeing from Taraket and will pass through the arch at any moment...
Here is an audio snippet of the scene:
One of my fave scenes from The Book of Wonders
Thanks for inviting me onto your blog and please do come over and say hello on www.jasminerichards.com. Here, you’ll find out more about The Book of Wonders and lots of giveaways to celebrate the book’s launch!
And before you leave, check out the book trailer.