Thursday, December 6, 2012

Starflower ~ Guest Post by Ann Elisabeth Stengl

On Tour with Prism Book Tours...

Starflower  (Tales of Goldstone Wood #4)
Tales of Goldstone Wood #4
by Anne Elisabeth Stengl
Paperback, 400 pages
Published November 1st 2012 by Bethany House

Book description:  When a cursed dragon-witch kidnaps the lovely Lady Gleamdren, Eanrin sets boldly forth on a rescue mission...and a race against his rival for Gleamdren's favor. Intent upon his quest, the last thing the immortal Faerie needs is to become mixed up with the troubles of an insignificant mortal. 

But when he stumbles upon a maiden trapped in an enchanted sleep, he cannot leave her alone in the dangerous Wood Between. One waking kiss later, Eanrin suddenly finds his story entangled with that of young Starflower. A strange link exists between this mortal girl and the dragon-witch. Will Starflower prove the key to Lady Gleamdren's rescue? Or will the dark power from which she flees destroy both her and her rescuer?

Guest Post by Anne Elisabeth Stengl!

I was sitting out in my sunroom one evening--about halfway through the first draft of Starflower--when a movement in my backyard caught my eye. Turning to look, I saw four beautiful, bouncing kittens gamboling about on my lawn as though they owned it.


I live on the edge of a little bamboo forest that is home to a feral cat colony. For those of you who don't know, feral cats are wild animals which have had no human interaction. They are as timid as squirrels and vicious when cornered, and after they reach a certain age are unlikely ever to be comfortable with people. They live harsh, brutal lives, struggling for every meal, falling prey to a number of predators and diseases. Most of them don't live long . . . just long enough to reproduce more wild kittens in far too great abundance.

The kittens in my yard that evening were feral kittens, born of a feral mother. The moment I stepped outside, thinking to give them a plate of food, they hissed and ran in terror. Which is a bit heartbreaking when you're talking about four gorgeous, fluffy, little balls of adorability!

Something had to be done.

Setting aside my manuscript for Starflower, I set about catching these kittens in a live-trap. One at a time, I caught them and took them down to my basement (I had to isolate them from my own cats because of the threat of diseases and fleas). There I set up a little room for them with a litter box, a bed, and plenty of food and water.

They were utterly terrified. Some of them hissed and scratched and snarled, trying to attack me if I reached out to handle them. Some of them merely curled up into quivering balls, unable to move as long as I was in the room. Their instincts ruled them, and their instincts screamed, Danger! Danger!

But I sat in that room for hours, talking to them, singing to them, touching them gently as they allowed me, offering them treats from my fingertips. I showered them with love. And one by one--some sooner, some later--I watched the transformations occur.

Those little kittens, so frightened, so vicious, turned into little balls of purring fluff, happy to cuddle in my lap for hours, offering to play sweetly. They no longer lashed out to claw me but would gently catch my hand between their paws and chew daintily on my fingers. They turned their bellies up for rubs, the ultimate sign (in cat language) of vulnerability and acceptance.

They turned from creatures of survival, instinct, and brutish fear into little personalities, each different from the others, each eager to give and accept love. The potential, which had always been inside them, blossomed, and they became devoted companions.

One day, sitting down in that basement with the most difficult of the kittens newly tamed and purring in my lap, eyes closed, belly-up, basking in the love I poured on his stripy little head, I suddenly knew what Starflower was meant to be about.

Starflower was going to be a story about transforming love.


About the Author:

Anne Elisabeth Stengl makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a passel of cats, and one long-suffering dog. When she's not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and studies piano, painting, and pastry baking. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University. She is the author of HEARTLESS, VEILED ROSE, MOONBLOOD, and STARFLOWER, with DRAGONWITCH due to release in 2013. HEARTLESS and VEILED ROSE have each been honored with a Christy Award.

Find & Follow:

The Dragonwood Series:

Bethany House

Get Your Copy:

Bethany House
Barnes & Noble
The Book Depository

Check out the entire December Tour!

3 - Laura @ Colorimetry - Launch!
3 - Sarah @ Letters to the Cosmos - Review
4 - Kathy @ I Am a Reader, Not a Writer - Excerpt
4 - Kari @ Kari's Crowded Bookshelf - Review
5 - Aleksandra @ Aleksandra's Corner - Guest Post - Inspired by Cats I
6 - Lisa @ Bookworm Lisa - Guest Post - Inspired by Cats II
6 - Mandy @ The Reading Diaries - Review
7 - Alicia @ Mortality Bites - Dragonwitch page REVEAL
7 - Naj @ Unputdownable Books - Guest Post - Inspired by Cats III
9 - Lissette @ Passion and Life - Guest Post - Night Terrors
10 - Laura @ Colorimetry - Review
10 - Bonnie @ A Backwards Story - Review
12 - Aimee @ Getting Your Read On - Guest Post - The Faces of Love I
12 - Kimberly Krey @ Kimberly Krey - Guest Post - Drafts
13 - Abbi @ Christian Novels - Tales of Goldstone Wood Reviews
13 - Mandy @ The Reading Diaries - Interview
14 - Ivy @ Open the Page - Guest Post - The Faces of Love II
16 - Alicia @ Mortality Bites - Review
17 - Len @ Musings of a Reader Happy - Hightlight/Excerpt - Meet Dragonwitch
17 - Jen @ Literally Jen - Review
18 - Beth @ Living a Goddess Life - Review
19 - Rach @ Stressed Rach - Guest Post - Illustrated Sneak Peak
19 - Christy @ Christy's Cozy Corners - Review
20 - Heather @ Proud Book Nerd - Review
20 - Heidi @ Geo Librarian - Guest Post - The Faces of Love III
21 - Jaime @ Goodreads - Review
21 - Finale @ Colorimetry - Giveaway winner announced.

Catch the Christmas Read-along!


Grand Prize

GRAND PRIZE:  The first four books The Tales of Goldstone Wood: HeartlessVeiled RoseMoonblood and Starflower + SWAG!  2nd place is a copy of Starflower + SWAG!

2nd Prize

Enter to win until 12/20. Winner to be announced 12/21. Open to anyone who can legally enter. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent's permission. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here & on Colorimetry as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Void where prohibited by law. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I can see a whole lot more cat influences in Starflower than in the previous books. Love these posts on your inspiration!

  2. I have never heard of these books, but they sound really good! Now in my wish list, thanks!!

  3. These look interesting. Will have to pass on titles to others, because I'm pretty sure they will be loved!

  4. Definitely passing the titles on to other friends. They sound really interesting. Can't wait to read em!

  5. I've got Heartless on my wishlist and I'm really looking forward to reading this series. This books sound great and love the covers. Thanks for the chance!


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