Tag: lore graham

Author Interview – Lore Graham

I’m pleased to bring you an interview this week from Lore Graham! Lore’s newest book, Under the Midnight Sun, will be out on August 14th! Check out my review of it here!

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And now, the questions!

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

The realization that I want to be a writer has crystallized slowly over the years. I’ve enjoyed writing since I was a kid, but more recently I’ve realized that it’s closer to a compulsion. I just don’t feel satisfied with my life if I’m not writing.

Where do you get your inspiration for your stories?

Everywhere! Inspiration is all around me – movies, music, books, nonfiction articles, things that have happened to me. Figuring out how to channel my inspiration is the hard part.

Where did you get your inspiration for the world of Under the Midnight Sun?

The world of Under the Midnight Sun is heavily inspired by medieval Scandinavia and the Vikings, as well as sword & sorcery fantasy. I picked the elements I wanted to keep (such as a warrior-centric culture and the presence of midnight sun in the summer) and the ones I wanted to change (land-locked instead of sea-faring, different relationship norms), then elaborated from there.

What is your favorite character type to write, and why?

I have a particular fondness for writing anxious characters because I’ve struggled a lot with anxiety and worry throughout my life. That said, I don’t center all of my stories around anxious characters, because I like to play with lots of different character types.

Who (a personal acquaintance or an author) has inspired you the most, and why?

My best friend and editor, Jack, provides me with ongoing inspiration and encouragement. Under the Midnight Sun wouldn’t exist without him!

What surprised you most when writing this story?

I was pleasantly surprised by how much some of my secondary characters grew. I tend to start writing drafts with only a vague idea of the secondary characters, so I love seeing how they come alive while I write.

Do you have any favorite tropes?

I really enjoy rivals-to-lovers and enemies-to-lovers tropes. I like seeing two characters who come in with a conflict and get on each others’ nerves faced with a mutual obstacle, and seeing that relationship progress as they develop mutual respect, understanding, and trust.

What draws you to the romance and fantasy genres?

I’m drawn to romance because I appreciate the guarantee of a happy ending, which is important for me when I’m reading stories about queer folks. I’ve always loved fantasy because I enjoy magic, monsters, and fantastical worlds.

What is your writing process like?

My writing process varies somewhat project by project, as I tweak it every time. I usually plan my stories extensively, and once I get writing I try to keep a consistent pace so that I can make it all the way to the end without losing steam.

What’s your favorite food, and your go-to writing fuel?

I have too many favorite foods to pick one! Writing fuel is easy though; baby carrots are perfect for mindless snacking while I’m working.

Are you reading any good books right now, and if so, share!

I’m almost finished with Alonso Munich is Now Dead by S. Gates which I’ve quite enjoyed! It’s a bit of a thriller as well an urban fantasy romance, as Alonso tries to figure out why he’s a vampire and how he’s lost five years of his memory.

If you could teleport to anywhere on the planet right now, where would it be and why?

Iceland! I’ve never been. I want to visit at least once in my life to see the Aurora Borealis.

 

Thanks so much for the interview, Lore!

About Lore:

Lore Graham is a queer writer who lives in Massachusetts. Ze primarily writes sci fi and fantasy romance, but dabbles in poetry and nonfiction as well.

Lore is passionate about spectacular worlds and queer characters. Ze is transgender and agender; zir pronouns are ze/zir/zir or they/them/their. Outside of writing, ze enjoys cooking, reading, and spending time with zir cat.

Check out Lore on social media!

Goodreads

Twitter

Lore’s Website

Review – Under the Midnight Sun by Lore Graham

Today I’m reviewing Under the Midnight Sun by Lore Graham.

Blurb: The eldest son of Thunderhill’s warrior-kings, Otto Johanson lives for battle but has forsaken love since the death of his partner three years ago. Still when the Midsummer festivities bring nomadic reindeer herders back to town, Otto can’t help but notice the handsome, if sullen, Lukas.

Tension rises between them during the annual tournament, but when a terrible attack devastates Thunderhill, Otto and Lukas must put aside their burgeoning rivalry to embark on a dangerous quest that may be the town’s only hope of survival.

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I’ve read one other short story by Lore, so I was excited to jump into something longer by this author!

Lore seems to have a knack for painting rich, developed worlds. I loved the myths and legends of the land. If I had to pick a favorite thing about the book, that would be it. One thing I particularly liked was that this world was accepting of all relationships, including same sex and triads, something that I always love to see in fantasy settings.

Though the world was well developed, I would have liked to see a bit more build up between Otto and Lukas. There were several places where exposition was used throughout the story to signal passages of time on the characters’ quest, which made it feel like less time passed than it actually had to me.

While this story probably didn’t quite have me on the edge of my seat, it’s rich mythos and descriptions still make for an enjoyable read. If you’re looking for lighter fantasy read with some m/m in it, you might want to give this one a try!

My rating: 3.5/5

Under the Midnight Sun releases on August 14th. You can preorder it now on Less Than Three’s website!

It is also on Goodreads if you’d like to add it to your shelf!

 

Disclosures: I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review and I’m friends with the author on Slack and social media.

Content warnings (provided by the author on Goodreads):

Explicit sexual content; graphic violence (fantasy-typical); animal death.

For specifics, which may contain minor spoilers, highlight over the text below:

A few scenes of explicit sex. Several scenes involving violence, including a couple of gory moments, a minor character being maimed in battle, and some secondary character deaths. Animal death (primarily reindeer) and violence towards animal-like monsters, but (specific spoiler) the dogs do not die!

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