Thursday, April 28, 2011

Caitlyn Kittredge - Guest Blogger

Hey everyone:

Caitlyn Kittredge is joining us today to tell us more about her Iron Codex world.  You may have already read my review of the first book Iron Thorn, but not, here's a link.

And here is Caitlyn:

Secrets of the Iron Codex

Hey there, everyone!  It's so great to be here guest-blogging at Kiss the Book.  I understand I'm the first guest blogger ever, so I'm going to try to set the bar high, and answer a few questions you all posed:

After a student reads your book – what are the five things they should probably look up on Wikipedia in order to understand your universe better – and WHY?

Great question!  Since The Iron Thorn is an alternate-history novel, here's a few things that might help students delve deeper into the world.

1.     H.P. Lovecraft and the Lovecraft Mythos
If you want a better understand of monsters like the shoggoth or places like Arkham that appear in The Iron Thorn, reading about H.P. Lovecraft and his Mythos (a shared world he created for some of his stories, most famously The Call of Cthulhu), this would be an excellent place to start!  I also recommend reading Lovecraft's work, starting with The Call of Cthulhu, A Shadow Over Innsmouth, Herbert West: Re-Animator, At the Mountains of Madness and Dagon.
2.     The Red Scare
McCarthyism, the hysteria-fueled hunt to root out Communism in America in the 1950s, plays a big part in why I decided to write the Iron Thorn.  Joseph McCarthy went far beyond his short-lived fame in The Iron Thorn, eventually getting elected President and instituting the Proctors and their oppressive laws.  The real story of the Red Scare has a different ending, but is no less chilling.
3.     Steampunk
A genre of entertainment and an asethetic movement, steampunk is a genre of alternate history that presupposes steam technology, rather than combustion or atomic, is the dominant form of progress.  Usually set in the Victorian era, but ranges from the Renaissance to the far future, in various novels.  Students can read up on classics of the genre and fun stuff like steampunk costuming, which is a great way to bring the world of steampunk books to life.  For other stellar steampunk novels, try Boneshaker by Cherie Priest, Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld or The Warlord of the Air by Michael Moorcock.
4.     Nikola Tesla
The father of modern technology, according to many, Tesla features prominently in The Iron Thorn, though I supposed that he invented a few secret, magically inclined items rather than his many true accomplishments, which include the alternating current—the means by which most modern homes and technology receive power.
5.     Dirigibles
Rather than airplanes, airships such as dirigibles and blimps are the primary form of travel in The Iron Thorn.  Reading about alternate forms of air travel often leads to learning about the inventors, the associated disasters, and how history may have turned out differently if one form of technology had been adopted above another.

Besides reading the blurb on the flyleaf or my review, what should a librarian know in order to sell this book to their students?

That it's a great adventure story, that it has some scary moments but also some romantic ones, and that if you love history, Gothic-style storytelling or just reading about worlds that aren't like our own, you'll probably love the book.  Aoife, the heroine, is also very into science and engineering, so geek girls and boys alike will really love her!

And lastly – is there something that you were DYING to talk about during the blog tour that just didn’t come up – a question you thought people would ask and they just didn’t, or some secret that you would be willing to spill if someone said just the right thing?

Really, if anyone has questions, I'm more than happy to answer them.  I'm so grateful I got a chance to share so much with my readers over the course of this tour, and I'm usually pretty easygoing as far as questions about myself, writing, publishing or my books. 

As for secrets—those have to stay secret for now, but suffice to say I am working on a new YA trilogy as well as more Iron Codex books.  Hopefully I'll have news for you soon!

(Cindy) Thanks Caitlyn!

If you want to read more of Caitlyn's blog tour, you can join her next at:
The Children's Book Review—Friday, April 29th
Library Lounge Wizard—Saturday, April 30th

Some of my personal favorite earlier stops on the tour were at:

SUVUDU—Tuesday, April 12th
Fantastic Book Review—Friday, April 15th  
Random Acts of Reading—Monday, April 18th

Now go buy the book - or see if the library has it to check out - because I had a great time reading it and I think you will too!

1 comment:

Caryn Caldwell said...

What a fun treat! Thanks for doing this. :-)