Monday, April 16, 2007

Christian Science Fiction & Fantasy Tour:
Karen Hancock and her Award-Winning
Legends of the Guardian-King Series

When asked in 2003 about the motivation behind the four-book project that has become the Legends of the Guardian-King, Karen Hancock said:
While other genres are excellent for demonstrating the way knowing Christ can affect one’s relationships and for showing the emptiness of a life without Him, it is speculative fiction that most lends itself to exploring the bigger picture of why we’re here. I believe that's to resolve the invisible supernatural conflict mentioned in Ephesians 6. The Light of Eidon was conceived decades ago as not only a way to portray this invisible conflict in more visible form, but also to explore the deceptions and distortions that blind the unbelieving to the truth. It is, in this sense, the tale of one man’s journey into Light. Like my first novel, Arena, The Light of Eidon’s allegorical elements are woven into a page-turning adventure peopled with characters who struggle with their own relationships—with each other and with their god.

No living writer of Christian fantasy and published by a "CBA" publisher has been as lauded by the Christian publishing community as Hancock, who has won four Christy awards. So, we're proud to feature her Guardian King series on this Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Blog Tour, particularly since the final book in the series, RETURN OF THE GUARDIAN-KING, is now out for viewers to enjoy.

It hasn't been easy being a Christian fantasy writer in an SF-unfriendly CBA environment. Hancock says this at her blog:

As I mentioned in the interview on Chris's blog, when I arrived at Mt. Hermon with Arena in proposal form in 1999, no one was doing fantasy. In fact, I was told that fantasy was a bad word and shouldn't even be used. The moment you said you were doing fantasy, you would immediately be compared to Tolkien or Eddings and no one can stand up to that. So, as I think some of you know, I called it "Speculative Historical Fiction."

When I sat at the tables with various editors and agents and it was my turn to say what I was writing, some of them literally shrank away. The lights went off, the shades were drawn and they went quickly on to the next person. Several editors were kinder -- they told me that they themselves loved the genre, but they'd never be able to get it past their editorial board.

Fortunately for her fans and aspiring CSF writers, Karen's series got picked up and all of it got published. (As opposed to the incomplete job Westbow did with the Birthright Project, which still makes the Mir go GRRRRRrrrrrrRRRrrr!)

The next few days, various blogs in this tour, including, naturally Mirathon, will focus on the assorted books of the series, including interviews with Karen H. I strongly encourage you to browse the sites that are on board this month, because CBA CSF pioneers like Karen should be supported by all of us who'd like to follow in her footsteps.

With that, I'm going to admit that I have purchased all the books in the LEGENDS OF THE GUARDIAN-KING series. I have not read them. I wanted to wait until all the books were out. I learned my lesson from Harry Potter. If I got really, vividly into the world, I was gonna be mighty impatient waiting for the conclusion. So, this year, I get to read the whole saga. Yipsy Yay!

If you have not read or purchased any of the novels, you have a chance to win a complete set. Karen is having a giveaway. Here is how to enter:

If you would like to be in the drawing for a complete autographed set of Legends of the Guardian-King, please leave a comment for me today through Wednesday saying so. I'll choose from the entrants' names Wednesday evening and post the winner Thursday. You only need to leave one comment telling me you want to be in the drawing. If Blogger won't let you comment, you can send me an email through the address given in the profile. Be sure you put something like Blog giveaway in the subject line so it won't get lost in the junk mail.

Better yet, buy them all. Here are the product links. If you plan to buy them, please use my links and help my "Mir Book Fund" at amazon. Or if you prefer CBD, buy them there. But pump up the sales of the LofGK, especially the new book, RETURN OF THE GUARDIAN-KING, and those sales will encourage editors to continue to acquire and supply us with quality Christian SF.

So, enter Karen's giveaway or BUY THE BOOKS, but, either way, GET THEM.

And if you've dropped by here and read this blog tour entry, you should know that *I* am giving away a book, too. Maybe you never bought the first. Maybe you have the first two or three, and want novel #3 or #4. Whichever one you want or need, if you win the giveaway, you get to pick ONE BOOK from the four titles listed ABOVE in glorious amazonish color.

How to Enter to win one LEGENDS OF THE GUARDIAN-KING book: Leave a comment saying "I WANT A FREE BOOK" and leave me your email in that address. Also, mention which in the series you want: 1, 2, 3 or 4.

Note:Disguise your email (example: JohnnyDoe atsy gmail dotdotdot com). Just for your safety.

Note #2: US RESIDENTS ONLY. See the note on my sidebar that's been there since 2006.

I will take all the names and choose one at random, and I'll post the winning name here Friday, and I'll contact you at your email to get your snail mail addy. I'll wing your book to you within a couple of days thereafter. So, commence with the commenting.

When you're done commenting, visit my delightful tourmates:

Nissa Annakindt, Wayne Thomas Batson, Jim Black, Jackie Castle, Valerie Comer, Karri Compton, Frank Creed, CSFF Blog Tour, Gene Curtis, D. G. D. Davidson, Chris Deanne, Janey DeMeo, April Erwin, Kameron M. Franklin, Linda Gilmore, Beth Goddard, Marcus Goodyear, Rebecca Grabill , Andrea Graham,  Jill Hart, Katie Hart, Sherrie Hibbs, Sharon Hinck, Christopher Hopper, Heather R. Hunt, Becca Johnson, Jason Joyner, Karen, Dawn King, Tina Kulesa, Lost Genre Guild, Kevin Lucia and The Bookshelf Reviews 2.0 - The Compendium, Rachel Marks, Rebecca LuElla Miller, Shannon McNear, Caleb Newell, Nicole , Eve Nielsen, John W. Otte, Robin Parrish , Rachelle, Cheryl Russel, Hanna Sandvig, Chawna Schroeder, Mirtika Schultz, James Somers, Tsaba House Authors, Steve Trower, Speculative Faith, Daniel I. Weaver

This tour continues TOMORROW!


chrisd said...

Thanks for the mention, Mir.

I also mentioned Cornerstone on my blog. I see you have them in your links. I miss their magazine so much.


She's a ground breaker and a wonderful author. I will have to get the whole set now.

Dona Watson said...

Oh! I WANT A FREE BOOK! I have the first 3 LotGK books and would LOVE to get book 4, but hubby says I have spent enough $$ on books this month already.
Thanks for the chance!

dlwatson at verizon [dot] net

Rebecca said...

Great contest! (Don't enter me - I have them already.) I didn't know Karen once described her work as "Historical Spec." That makes total sense to me (I've described mine similarly). I recall thinking when I read her first that it read like historical fiction - just a different history than the one we "know" (or think we know, not to cue the twilight zone music or anything.).

Pixy said...

Karen said: "When I sat at the tables with various editors and agents and it was my turn to say what I was writing, some of them literally shrank away. The lights went off, the shades were drawn and they went quickly on to the next person. Several editors were kinder -- they told me that they themselves loved the genre, but they'd never be able to get it past their editorial board."

Boy, does that sound familiar. They still do that--especially if you say "teen" in there someplace. Or they give you this long lecture on how fantasy really just doesn't sell--a fact I have yet to see as truth--where are these people getting their intel?

Oh, and I WANNA FREE BOOK. :) #4, if you please. :D

pixydustin AT yahoo DOT com

chrisd said...

BTW, No, I do not want a free book. Thanks, Mir.

Rebecca said...

Pix, if you really want to know why they think fantasy doesn't sell, head over to my place and search for "Evil Gnomes."

I didn't make that up.

Mirtika said...

HAH. I remember the evil gnomes.

Okay, Dona and Pixy are in teh drawing.


Eve said...

I'd love to have one, Mir, but alas-I'm a Canuk.

I have also posted a contest on my blog.

Matt Mikalatos said...

I like free books!


I guess I'll start at the beginning. Numero uno por favor.