Follow Me!

2019 Reading Challenge

2019 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 0 books toward her goal of 200 books.
hide

NetGalley Badges and Honors

100 Book Reviews Frequently Auto-Approved 80% Reviews Published 2016 NetGalley Challenge Professional Reader
Check out the Penguin First to Read program - firsttoread.com. First To Read

Character Interviews AND Bonus Excerpts from Water to Water by Karen A. Wyle

Today I’m beyond pleased to introduce you to Karen Wyle’s new book – Water to Water – via a very cool concept: character interviews. To set the stage, I’ll provide a blurb on the book. Then you’ll be able to read two interviews with characters from the story, as well as read an excerpt. I’ll be following this up with another set of interviews and excerpts later this year, so keep your eye out! Enjoy!

About the Book
When the time comes for Vushla to die, they go into the ocean and are dissolved away. Or so Terrill has always believed, and still believes after taking part in his father’s final journey. But when he meets a young Vushlu who lives by the sea, Terrill must confront information that calls this fundamental belief into question. Will the two of them discover the truth? And what should they do with what they find?

And check out the book trailer – it’s stunning!

Character Interview with Honnu
Honnu is a young Vushlu. His family are fisher folk and live by the sea. This interview takes place around the time the story begins, on the beach, in late afternoon. Honnu is cleaning a fishing boat.

Q. Hello. I hope I’m not disturbing –

A. Watch out! I’m using seawater here.

Q. It’s splashing all over you. Isn’t that a problem?

A. Not with this suit on. [He gestures along his body.] It’ll keep the water out for years and years yet.

Q. Do you have such suits for visitors? For rent, perhaps?

A. Sorry, no. They take a long time to make. We only get them when we’re done growing, and then we keep them for a long time. Let me just finish up here, and we can talk.
[a few minutes later]
All done! I have a few minutes before I go do chores.

Q. I gather you fish for a living.

A. That’s right.

Q. Do you like it?

A. [a slight pause] Pretty well. I like working with other people. More when they appreciate my help, which they mostly do. Of course, I like it better some days than others. In hot season, it’s cooler out on the water than on land – though the suit does make me warmer than I’d be otherwise. Cold season, that can get, well, cold, suit or no suit. And I get pretty tired by the end of the day. But it’s better than being bored. [another pause] Not that I’m never bored.

Q. Do you picture yourself doing anything different, later in your life?

A. [scuffs a hind foot in the sand] I’d like to see more of the world, someday, somehow. I hear stories – mainly from the Weesah peddler who comes here – and I want to see for myself whether they’re true, and what other stories might be out there waiting to be found.
[someone calls Honnu’s name from a nearby dwelling]
I’d better go. Chores, like I said. It was nice talking to you. If you want to come with me, you could maybe stay for dinner. The peddler brought sausages, and we’ll be having a campfire.


Character Interview with Kititit the Weesah Peddler
Kititit, the Weesah peddler, is what you might call an important secondary character. Look hard enough at something that happens, and you might see his long fingers stirring around in it. And I, for one, find him entertaining. Here’s an interview with Kititit.

Q. How did you become a peddler?

A. Well, now. That’s a ways to think back . . . . When I was a young sprout, we had a neighbor who was a peddler, wagon and all. I thought her wagon was about the prettiest thing I’d ever seen, all painted up as it was. And she used to let me help load the goods in the back – leastways, helping is what she called it. Getting in the way is what I’d call it, remembering. And when she’d been away and came home again, she always had stories to tell about the places she’d been. I’d never been anywhere, and I got to hankering after a life like she had.

Q. Your wagon – did it used to be your neighbor’s?

A. Right you are! Though by the time she figured she was ready to stay home and play with her grandchildren and take it easy, the wagon was what you might call used up – the canopy, anyway. My folks gave me a new one, and I picked what to paint on it.

Q. You have a mate and children, I hear. How have you managed to strike a balance between traveling and family life?

A. Well, I don’t have just any mate. I made sure to find a lady as liked to hear stories. I promised to always bring back plenty of stories. And she’s an independent sort – doesn’t need someone at her elbow all the time, telling her how to do things. A mate as hung around every day might get annoying for such as her. So we suit each other. And the longer I’m away, the longer I stay home and do my bit with the young ‘uns and the beasts and the garden and all. And now that some of our young ‘uns are grown, she has plenty of help when she needs it.

Q. You’re acquainted with Terrill and Honnu, I believe. How did that come about?

A. I’ve known Honnu a good piece of his life, I’d say. I visit a few different fisher villages, and he lives – or lived, I’m not sure which is right just now – in one of ‘em. I was the first Weesah he ever saw, I reckon, and how he would stare! Anyhow, he’s a curious fellow and always likes to hear my traveler’s tales.

Q. That brings up an interesting point. Aren’t you somewhat given to exaggeration in those tales of yours? Should Honnu believe everything you say?

A. (laughs) No, I can’t say as he should. But I reckon he knows that. Now, I wouldn’t say he knows just what to believe and what not to. But if he ever asked me, serious-like, I’d tell him.

Q. And Terrill? How did you meet him?

A. That was luck, if luck is something that happens, as to which I’ve no firm opinion. His da took ill, and Terrill was one of the funeral party as took him to the sea. I left Honnu’s village about the time they left to head home again, and we got to talking on the road. A nice young fellow. On the serious side, and tending to worry more than is comfortable for a youngster his age. I did my bit to cheer him up, when I could.

Q. And how did Terrill and Honnu meet each other?

A. (chuckles) Well, I’ll maybe let you ask one of them about that. I’d best be packing up and heading on, pretty soon. Any last questions? Or might you be wanting something from the wagon before I go? I’ve got some good knives I picked up a few towns back. Or if you’ve little ones at home, I have toys — balls for juggling, and these dolls. See the bits of shell that make up the armor? And of course, I have fish. Always plenty of fish.

Excerpts
[This excerpt comes from The Preface.]

————–

When a Vushlu reaches the age of adulthood, its family, or if it has none, respected community members, take it to the ocean. Traditionally, it will never have been there before, unless its family catches sea creatures for a living. Often many families will travel together, a pilgrimage of celebration.

On its last day of life, a Vushlu swims out to sea, or if too weak to swim, wades in and lets the waves carry it. The ocean swallows its front legs, its rear legs, its back, its torso, its arms, its shoulders, and finally its head. Immersion in the water softens its living armor, its exoskeleton, until the plates sheet off and wash away, followed by the soft flesh within.

No Vushlu has ever returned to its home with this process incomplete. But Vushla splashed with seawater report no pain.

————–

[This excerpt comes early in Chapter 1, and introduces us to Honnu, one of two major Vushla characters.]

————–

Honnu squatted by the campfire, all four legs comfortably sunk in the sand, his lower armor sealed tight to keep sand out, and watched the procession approach the sea. It was a small group, with only one young Vushlu among the older ones. A funeral, then. The young one must be the son or daughter of the Vushlu, aging or ailing, whose funeral it was.

Honnu turned away before the group reached the edge of the water. He knew, of course, what would happen, but he had no wish to watch. After all, he lived with the ocean, lived from it, rode out every day to toss the nets and haul them back. He and his family depended on the ocean. But he often thought he must feel like a farmer with a very, very large and powerful bull. Such a useful animal — it sired strong beasts like itself, and it pulled plows through earth too sticky for pull-cycles. But it could, any time it chose to, trample the farmer into jelly. The farmer could hope that the bull would never turn on its master. Honnu lived with the certain knowledge that
one day, the ocean would reveal itself as the largest possible beast, and devour him whole.

No, he had no need to watch it happen to others, not when he would be paddling the boat out again tomorrow morning.

————

[Here’s one more excerpt, a longer one. It starts shortly after the first, and switches partway through from Honnu’s POV to that of Kititit, a visiting peddler. (Kititit is a Weesah, not a Vushlu. The two species’ anatomy differ substantially, a fact to which Honnu makes a passing reference.)]

————

The last taste of dinner was fading from Honnu’s mouth. Even food was different when the peddler came. This very night, around this same fire, they had roasted and eaten plump sausages spitting with juice, made from some crawling creature that pushed through underbrush and
rooted in the earth of far-off forests.

Honnu stretched his arms and upper body to soak in the warmth of the fire, welcome as the end of hot season brought cooler night breezes. Which of the peddler’s tales might actually be true? Honnu had never traveled farther than the nearest market town — far enough away from the shore that the sea could not be seen, but not too far for its smell to carry, competing with the smell of the fish he sold and the pastries and spices and flowers in the stalls all around him. Were there really trees so tall that a Vushlu would have to rear back on its hind legs and lean against something sturdy in order to see the tops? Did mountains soar even higher? Did rivers of water pour out of those mountains? Did the mountains rise above the air itself, so that the air strained and grew thin, and one could look down and see the thicker air below? Did fountains of fire leap up from hidden places to consume travelers? Did birds, glowing as bright as any fire, swarm over the fields in springtime, keeping farmers from sowing seed until the birds had flown away? Did a species of giants, giants who never came near the ocean, giants with two legs and two arms like the Weesah but each limb twice as thick as a Weesah’s trunk, raise beasts for farmers, never leaving their ranches, requiring farmers to come to them? Were there places where the sky was always red, and others where the sky was always black?

Honnu’s family must know the answers to those questions, or to some of them, but his aunt never wanted to talk about it, and his grandfather changed his story from one time to the next, and his mother said none of it was true. Honnu refused to believe that.

Unless he found a way to go see for himself, he would never know.

Now he heard sounds of movement and conversation, and tires pushing through sand. The procession must be leaving, with one of its members gone forever into the sea. They would probably not go very far in the dark. There was an inn serving such travelers in the market town. But by morning, they would be on their way back to wherever they came from. To one of the many, many places Honnu had never seen.

* * * * *

Kititit looked at different Vushla in turn as he told the story about buying a beast from a giant and tricking the fellow into lowering the price. The Vushla’s armor mostly left their faces bare, so you could see them drink the story in, especially the young ones. All right, maybe his mate’s uncle’s cousin wasn’t exactly a giant, but he was big enough that none of his neighbors gave him any backtalk. Kititit had come out of that exchange well enough to enjoy bragging about it, even if he did embellish the details a bit for effect.​

It was a fine way to spend an evening. It would have been, even if the breeze hadn’t been a trifle nippy. He’d always liked campfires, but he particularly enjoyed them in villages like this. Vushlu armor wasn’t exactly reflective, but almost, enough to catch the firelight and play with it a bit. And while he always liked the smell of a campfire, it mingled especially nicely with the unique tangy smell of the sea. As for the traces of fish odor, he didn’t mind them. He did wonder, looking around at the Vushla, how much of it all they could smell with those small holes in their faces. His big mesh-covered nostrils had to do a better job, unless they somehow didn’t.

He caught the fisher lad’s eye for just a moment before the lad looked away. A bit shy, that one, but with thirsty ears, always soaking in whatever story Kititit chose to tell. Kititit’s oldest son had been like that, when he was a good bit younger. And when the boy and his sister had come with Kititit on his journeys, there had been plenty of time for telling tales.

Naturally the boy, or rather the proud young father, had started staying home now that he had a mate and little ones. And Kititit’s daughter, once proud to be included, had lately been more like willing. A good-hearted lass, ready to help her father in case he was too old and feeble to handle things alone; but it was time for her to live in the center of her own life, and Kititit to go back to how he used to travel, enjoying his own and the beast’s company.

Still, it was nice to have a youngster or two around the campfire.

***

The book released today and is available on Amazon (see link below) and via this Universal Buy Link.

Here’s the Amazon preorder page: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07HM67TSW/

Share this Fabulous post with the World:
  • Print
  • Add to favorites
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Digg
  • email
  • RSS
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Buzz
  • Reddit
  • Tumblr
  • blogmarks
  • Blogosphere

1 comment to Character Interviews AND Bonus Excerpts from Water to Water by Karen A. Wyle

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

  

  

  

Categories

Archives

Copyright

Please note that all content appearing on Jill-Elizabeth.com is copyright protected. As such, no text may be reproduced or distributed, in whole or in part, in any medium without express written or electronic consent from the author. To obtain such consent, please submit your name, the text you would like to reproduce and/or distribute, and the medium in which you would like to reproduce and/or distribute it to JillElizabeth@jill-elizabeth.com. You will be contacted within seventy-two hours regarding your request.