I went to the launch party for The Shadow Prince, the first in a new trilogy, by Bree Despain at The King’s English on Saturday with my friend Kami. This is the first time I’ve been to a launch party during the day at The King’s English. Normally, the launches are held in the gallery just down the block, but this one was held in the bookshop itself. It was a lot of fun to see the room so full of people.
At the launch party, Bree talked about her inspiration for this new trilogy. She said that the idea came about seven years ago during a time when she was really down. She had received rejection and rejection for The Dark Divine and she felt like anything she wrote wouldn’t be good enough. It would just be rejected like everything else. She actually stopped writing for about a year and a half.
During this year and half, she really gravitated to a song by Death Cab for Cutie, “I’ll Follow You into the Dark.” She started thinking about what would make someone follow someone into the dark, other than death as the song suggests. And, because she’s a huge fan of Greek mythology, Hades and Persephone came to her as well as Orpheus and Eurydice.
As she researched each of these myths, especially the one about Persephone, she found that the myth has changed a lot throughout history. Today’s myth makes Persephone the victim and powerless. But, some versions closer to the original myth had her choosing to go to the underworld or already the queen of the underworld. So, Bree wanted to focus on those. She wanted to make her Persephone character strong and not a victim.
After she was done talking about her inspiration, she answered questions. One of the questions she was asked was if it was hard to keep Daphne’s voice separate from Grace’s (The Dark Divine). She said that it was. She concentrated really hard on not making them same, making sure their mannerisms or how they’d react to things were different. She said Haden was much easier to write because of that and she modeled him after Prince Zuko from Avatar: The Last Airbender. And, for you Doctor Who fans, she modeled Daphne’s dad after David Tennant from Fright Night.
After the presentation and questions, we had the opportunity to have her sign our books. I’m so excited to read The Shadow Prince. I can’t wait to see all the new adventures this new trilogy holds!