The Falcon Flies Alone
by Gabrielle Mathieu
GENRE: Historical fantasy
As the sun rises on a quiet Swiss mountain village in 1957, runaway Peppa Mueller wakes up naked and stranded on the roof of her employer’s manor, with no idea how she got there. As she waits for help, she struggles to piece together fragmented memories of the previous night. Did she really witness the brutal massacre of a local family? Did she kill them? Her fear of sinister house guest Dr. Unruh fuels her panic—as do electrifying flashes of a furious falcon, trapped inside her.
Wanted for murder, Peppa flees the police, intent on finding out if there’s a scientific explanation or if she’s just going mad. Her godfather, world-renowned chemist Dr. Kaufmann, risks his career to help her. In the meantime, Peppa fights her attraction to the handsome priest from India who offers her shelter. With their help, she not only finds Dr. Unruh but places herself at his mercy. His experiments may be the reason Peppa now shares her body with a bloodthirsty bird of prey—but the revenge she plans could kill them both.
NOTE: The book will be on sale for only $0.99 during the tour.
The purring BMW glided like a black swan through an intersection manned by a policeman in a white suit, hat, and gloves. We crossed broad boulevards named after Bavarian kings and headed toward a green leafy strip and a broad bridge. Were we leaving town? How would Tenzin ever find me?
“Where are we going?”
All I could see of the chauffeur from the back seat was his jaunty dark cap and solid neck. I repeated my question.
He answered reluctantly. “We’ve passed Schwabing. Going to Bogenhausen.”
“When did we leave Munich?”
His laugh rattled me. “We’re in the middle of Munich, country mouse. Driving through the English Park.”
My nervousness mounted. I couldn’t keep my eyes off his broad, red nape, with its bulges of vertebra. It would take some power to snap a neck like that. Power that Chlora, my falcon totem, had.
We crossed a broad river and he turned to me as he braked to take a right. His eyes were pale, a washed-out blue. “I can feel your breath on my neck, Miss. What are you doing?”
“Sorry.” I folded my hands on my lap and tried to look normal.
“The doctor warned me you might be dangerous. But I could crush your skinny arm in my hand without even breaking a sweat.”
I wondered how he’d like one of those scorpions dropped down the neck of his uniform. But it was too early for a declaration of hostilities.
Gabrielle Mathieu: Why do I write the type of books I do?
Well, , I write the kind of book that I would like to read.
There are thousands of books out there, so it might help to explain how my work differs.
Genre blending: I want to be unpredictable. That means walking the thin line between genre expectations and fiction so literary that it will lose the emotional connection to the reader. Some tropes are necessary, but I don’t have a checklist in my mind, to make sure I’ve fulfilled every reader’s expectation. I do like happy endings, but only at the very, very end of the series.
Writing fantasy for adults: I like nuanced writing. I want things to be complicated, not in a dense, “tricked you now” way, but in a way that echoes our lives and our understanding of events. The answer is rarely as simple as getting a magic implement.
Let me be honest with you. I am not a huge J.R.R. Rowling fan. I like her books, but I don’t want to write something set at a boarding school, with sneering reptilian villains and spunky girls. Neither do I want to write a grim adult novel where things go from bad to worse. Ravens pecking out the eyes of decomposing corpses—no, thanks.
I hope to engage you, and make you ponder a little.
Speaking of making you ponder…did you know that the Brugmansia flower is a member of the Nightshade family? Or that people in part of Switzerland speak an ancient type of German called Swiss-German? Or that the IRA, the Irish freedom fighters, were also active in the late fifties? (Book 2). Since my mind collects and bundles certain types of information (unfortunately not including where I’ve left my keys), I have lots of interesting facts at my disposal.
Sometimes I wrote blog posts about the background of my novels, which you can find here: http://gabriellemathieu.com/category/blog/
Feel free to stop in and browse.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Gabrielle Mathieu lived on three continents by the age of eight. She’d experienced the bustling bazaars of Pakistan, the serenity of Swiss mountain lakes, and the chaos of the immigration desk at the JFK airport. Perhaps that’s why she developed an appetite for the unusual and disorienting. Her fantasy books are grounded in her experience of different cultures and interest in altered states of consciousness (mostly white wine and yoga these days). The Falcon Flies Alone is her debut novel.
Gabrielle Mathieu will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.