Jul 11, 2013

Summer Author Blitz: Cinda Williams Chima

Hello, people of the universe! Welcome to my stop on the Summer Author Blitz tour! Today I am hosting the lovely Cinda Williams Chima, author of the Seven Realms series and the Heir Chronicles. I have an awesome guest post from Cinda, as well as all the info on her and her books, plus a giveaway for The Enchanter Heir! Enjoy!

The Guest Post
The Heir Chronicles Redux Can You Really Go Home Again?

When my sons were thirteen and sixteen, I began writing a fantasy novel for teens. We all loved reading fantasy fiction, and I thought it would be cool to write something they would enjoy reading. The story focused on Jack Swift, a midwestern high school student who discovers he’s among the last of a guild of magical warriors. Jack’s being hunted by wizards to play in a magical tournament known as the Game—a fight to the death.  I called it The Warrior Heir.

After four years of revision, and lots more writing practice, The Warrior Heir sold, and then the companion novel, The Wizard Heir, and finally The Dragon Heir, which brought the previous stories together and tied them off neatly. We called the trio The Heir Chronicles. I then moved on to another teen series, the Seven Realms.

I’ve been so fortunate. Both of my series are New York Times bestsellers. The Heir Chronicles have continued to find new readers, seven years after the first book was published. Readers (and my publisher) have been asking whether I might consider writing more stories about the warring magical guilds known as the Weir.

I was wary. I hate it when I suspect that an author is stretching the equivalent of five stories into ten books with ten advances. I would much rather leave readers wanting more than fading away when they realize they have totally been there and done that too many times.

Readers move on. Writers do, too. I’m not the same writer I was in 2008, when the last of the Heir novels was published. I’ve changed—improved, I hope, but I worried that the reader looking for the exact same reading experience may be disappointed.

Could I really go home again? And, yet, I knew there were more stories to tell in that world. And so, I agreed to write two more Heir novels.

How hard could it be? I thought. I have my magical system, I have my world, and all I have to do is get the old band of characters back together.

I think it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

First of all, I had to find a way to pick apart the tidy ending I’d crafted and get my characters in trouble again. 

Secondly, I found myself trying to write amid the din of a thousand voices in my head. Over the past seven years, I’ve received lots of feedback from editors, readers and reviewers. No writer can satisfy everyone, and readers often disagree. You know this, if you’ve ever read a series of reviews of a book on Goodreads or Amazon. One reader says a novel is slow-paced, another says it’s rushed. One says there’s too much info in the first chapters, another says there should have been more up-front world-building. One reader loves a character, another finds her annoying.

Plus, once the new books were announced, readers made their expectations known.  I hope you’re planning to give Linda and Leander more stage time, one wrote. You neglected them in your last book.  Or, I hope you’re planning to bring _____ back to life. He was the best character ever, and you killed him off.

Meanwhile I was hearing from Seven Realms fans demanding to know why I wasn’t writing more fantasy in that world.

I had my own goals as well. I wanted to write a twinset of stories that a brand new reader could pick up and read without confusion. Stories that could stand alone, but would be a satisfying read for fans of the first three novels.

My readers know that I love to tell a story from different perspectives, because the truth often lies somewhere in between. I began asking the what-if questions.

What if some members of the “underguilds” decided to win the ongoing battle against the oppressive wizard guilds once and for all? Could there be a scenario in which wizards are actually the victims? Where genetic engineering and magic collide to create a whole new set of conflicts and unanticipated consequences? 

Of course there could.

And so I did what I’ve done before: I brought new characters onstage, while giving familiar characters some stage time, too. In honor of the new novels, my publisher has refreshed the covers of the original three books and designed a fantastic cover for The Enchanter Heir.

Perhaps you can go home again.

The Books
Seven Realms, featuring The Demon King, The Exiled Queen, The Gray Wolf Throne, and The Crimson Crown

Heir Chronicles, featuring The Warrior Heir, The Wizard Heir, and The Dragon Heir

The latest novel in the Heir Chronicles, The Enchanter Heir, releases this fall, and can be read without reading the previous books in the Heir Chronicles.

Title: The Enchanter Heir
Author: Cinda Williams Chima
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Publishing Date: October 1, 2013
Pages: 512
Barnes & Noble

The first of two new novels in the Heir Series.

Universes collide, intrigues abound, and familiar faces return in Cinda Williams Chima’s brilliant new chapter in her beloved and bestselling Heir Chronicles series.

They called it the Thorn Hill Massacre—the brutal attack on a once-thriving Weir community. Though Jonah Kinlock lived through it, he did not emerge unscathed: like the other survivors, Jonah possesses unique magical gifts that set him apart from members of the mainline guilds. At seventeen, Jonah has become the deadliest assassin in Nightshade, a global network that hunts the undead.  He is being groomed to succeed Gabriel Mandrake, the sorcerer, philanthropist, and ruthless music promoter who established the Thorn Hill Foundation, the public face of Nightshade. More and more, Jonah’s at odds with Gabriel’s tactics and choice of targets. Desperate to help his dying brother Kenzie, Jonah opens doors that Gabriel prefers to keep closed.

Emma Claire Greenwood grew up worlds away, raised by a grandfather who taught her music rather than magic. An unschooled wild child, she runs the streets until the night she finds her grandfather dying, gripping a note warning Emma that she might be in danger. The clue he leaves behind leads Emma into Jonah’s life—and a shared legacy of secrets and lingering questions.

Was Thorn Hill really a peaceful commune? Or was it, as the Wizard Guild claims, a hotbed of underguild terrorists? The Wizards’ suspicions grow when members of the mainline guilds start turning up dead. They blame Madison Moss and the Interguild Council, threatening the fragile peace brokered at Trinity.

Racing against time, Jonah and Emma work to uncover the truth about Thorn Hill, amid growing suspicion that whoever planned the Thorn Hill Massacre might strike again.

From Cinda: "Stay tuned for the release of a free short story linking the redux to the first three novels, and featuring one of my favorite characters, the wizard Leesha Middleton."

The Author
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Cinda Williams Chima grew up with talking animals and kick-butt Barbies. She began writing poetry and stories in third grade, and novels in junior high school. Her Heir Chronicles young adult contemporary fantasy series includes The Warrior Heir (2006), The Wizard Heir (2007), and The Dragon Heir (2008), all from Hyperion, with The Enchanter Heir coming October 1, 2013.

Chima's bestselling YA high fantasy Seven Realms series launched with The Demon King (2009), followed by The Exiled Queen, (2009), The Gray Wolf Throne (2011), and The Crimson Crown (2012).

Chima's books have received starred reviews in Kirkus and VOYA, among others. They have been named Booksense and Indie Next picks, an International Reading Association Young Adult Choice, a New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age, to the Kirkus Best YA list, and the VOYA Editor's Choice, Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror, and Perfect Tens lists. Her books also appear on numerous state awards lists. Her books have been New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher's Weekly bestsellers.

Chima was a recipient of the 2008 Lit Award for Fiction from the Cleveland Lit and was named a Cleveland Magazine Interesting Person 2009. She lives in Ohio with her family, and is always working on her next novel. 


The Blitz
The Summer Author Blitz is taking place throughout July and features several authors in guest posts and interviews, as well as a scavenger hunt. It has been made possible by the awesome Tabatha Perry (Montgomery County Book Festival) and Belle Whittington (Books and Broomsticks), so be sure to thank them!

+On July 19 at 7:00 p.m. there will be a Twitter party--follow #2013SummerAuthorBlitz!

+On July 26 at 3:00 p.m. there will be a Facebook event, which you can check out here.

The Giveaway
+No cheating
+One entry per person
+Winner will have 48 hours to respond or else a new winner will be drawn
+US Only
+No one associated with this post or the Blitz is responsible for lost or damaged items
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Awesome post, Rachel! :-) Thank you so much! What a fabulous addition to our 2013 Summer Author Blitz! <3 ~Belle

  2. I love all things Cinda Williams Chima! I think it's awesome and brave to pick up where you left off and try to write news stories in the same world! We'll be happy to keep reading them after all.

    I love the Seven Realms so I would be happy for her to take another look there!

  3. Don't mind it; can't think of any to revisit

  4. Thanks for hosting the interview and giveaway. The Warrior Heir is one of the first YA books I ever read, and it is because of Cinda that I fell in love with the genre.

  5. I love it when they go back to old worlds! It's like meeting an old friend again!!

  6. I love both of her series so much!

  7. I love when a good writer takes us further into their world .. whether it be forward or backward .. all good stuff!

  8. I have read this series and the Seven Realms series and I love them. Can't wait to read the Enchanter Heir!

  9. I enjoyed this world and look forward to the new chapter

  10. Can't wait for The Enchanter Heir! I hope I win an ARC!

  11. I have a lot of favorite authors-all ones I can trust to make really good sequels should they decide to do so. Most of my favorites have passed away, however, so let me rephrase this: I trust all my living authors to make brilliant new works that I will devour. Cinda Williams Chima is one of those authors. Even if I don't win the ARC, I'll definitely be getting this on October 1st. I can't wait!

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  13. At first, I had no interest whatsoever for these books. Then my sister had me say something as Ellen Stephenson for a potential IMovie. I got the Warrior heir from the library and couldn't set it down! I think I finished it in less than 72 hours. I could hardly wait to get the others from the library, and when I finished the Dragon Heir, I wished the series would just keep going, because there is absolutely no way that with Madison's and Seph's luck combined that their unfortunate encounters could end there. And now there will be more books! Yay!

  14. Here's to hoping I win! I loved reading the first three books and am brimming with excitement to delve in the world of weirstones once more!

  15. I love all her books. She is a marvelous author.

  16. I love Cinda's books! If any author can go back and revisit a world they have created it would be Cinda. The world she created for the Heir series is worth reading. I would love to win an arc--especially so I don't have to wait until the book is published to read the Enchantor Heir. -Debbie Nance

  17. If it's done well, I don't mind. I think Cinda can do it.

  18. I think whether an author can return to a world or not kind of depends on the series. for example, i think Cassandra Clare is going a bit overboard with 2 series (one that could have ended quite nicely 3 books ago) already and 3 more on the way. it's just too much! On the other hand, who wouldn't love to see some more from JK Rowling about the wizarding world, and I think Cinda left enough problems unresolved in The Crimson Crown (while still wrapping it up nicely) that i think she could probably continue the series with a few more books (i mean, we left off with them about to face a gigantic war! i would love to hear how that ends)

  19. I actually like it because it shows that closure doesn't meant hat the world is dead. it shows versatility because they didn't try to wrap EVERYTHING up but it was wrapped up enough to be a legit ending

  20. I love when authors revisit worlds. I trust that when authors revisit their worlds that the stories are worth telling.

  21. How fun! I love Cinda Chima Williams, I can't wait to read her newest book. Time to reread all the other Heir books ...

  22. I can't wait to see what Cinda Williams Chima has in store for us with her new addition to a greatly loved series.

  23. I would love to win a copy of the new book! I love all of her material.

  24. Great book series! Can't wait for the next.

  25. I love this series! Can't wait to read this one!

  26. I'm looking forward to learning more about The Heir Chronicles world and can't wait to see which characters she brings back to The Enchanter. Authors who write descriptive worlds that fit the story; that fit the characters needs to tell the story; are worlds that can be revisited and expanded.

  27. I'm so excited to see this story continue. Although it was as neat ending in the Dragon Heir, I feel like there is more to the story that I'm dying to read. I can't wait!

  28. Had the chance to meet Cinda during her book tour for the Crimson Crown. Looking forward to the next Weir book!

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  30. I can't wait to read it! I love getting lost in her fantasy worlds, and everything she writes is brilliant.

  31. One of my favorite authors!! cant wait to read this book!

  32. I've been a fan of Cinda Williams Chima since 2006 when I browsed through a B&N and found the Warrior Heir with a cool cover and a promising-looking synopsis. I look forward to her return to the Heir world and also to whatever she plans to write next; be it a return to the Seven Realms or something new.

  33. FYI, Someone reported this site. McAfee blocked the site, as well as Norton and Facebook. You might want to contact them to get this fixed.

    1. Thank you! I know my link can't be posted on Facebook, which is SUPER frustrating. I'm still trying to figure out how to fix it, and I may just have to switch to Wordpress because of it. Thanks for letting me know it was blocked!

  34. I love Cinda WIlliam Chima's books. She has a perfect mix of violence, magic, and romance in her books. I'm really excited to see what she does with The Enchanter Heir. I think it will be similar to The Wizard Heir, it will mix in new characters but bring back some old ones as well!

  35. I cant wait to read her next book. I own both the Seven Realms series and the Heir trilogy.. well I guess it's not exactly a trilogy any more <3

  36. A writer friend of mine once gave me the best advice about writing: read the genre you plan to write in - thus my discovery of Cinda Williams Chima. I can't wait to read this next installment in the Heir Chronicles.

  37. I love Cinda Williams Chima and all her books. Awesome post!

  38. I am never ready to give up a world once I become a part of it. I hope the Heir Series continues for quite a bit longer, the only thing I hate about revisiting worlds is the wait between books.

  39. I have hoped for the series to continue in some way or another. I just had the same fear that it may run dry after too much exposure, but I feel as if given the right amount of time then we as fans wont have to worry about that.

  40. I love Cinda, she is such a greater writer!

  41. I've contacted her via Good Reads, and she replied. I'm a total fan. Got the hubby to read the Heir series. I'm glad she's adding two books.

  42. It really depends. If the story ended nicely with no room or need to continue, then I wouldn't like the story to continue again and kind of ruin the ending. However, I like how some authors like cinda williams chima will use the same world but write new stories with a new cast of characters and not have the old characters as the focus :D So, I would like to revisit seven realms series and anna dressed in blood books by kendare blake.

  43. I absolutely love when authors revisit places and characters in a new series. Having Han or Raisa show up in a different series would make me so happy. Finding out how my favorite characters are doing is a great source of enjoyment to me.

  44. I am super excited for this book!!! I dont know if I can wait any longer!!!!

  45. What a great story! Can't wait to hear more!


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