Welcome to my blog where today I am lucky to be able to share Nick Lovelock’s thoughts on his book Discoucia.
Many thanks to Nick Lovelock, publisher Clink Street publishers and blog tour organiser Rachel Gilbey for the invite to be part of his blog tour.
Revolution, romance and technological wonders are all in a day’s work for the decorated hero of Alavonia, Sir Arthur Pageon.
An acclaimed explorer and inventor, Sir Arthur Pageon takes his unofficial role as defender of the realm of Alavonia very seriously. A fantastical world, Alavonia is home to the Discoucian Monarchy, as well as monstrous creatures and secretive academies for the highly gifted. Upon returning from his most recent exploits aboard on his personal flying galleon The Nostradamus, Pageon is treated to a hero’s welcome and celebratory procession through the streets of Alavonia’s capital, Evermore. Little does Pageon know he’s being followed by a mysterious group known as the Purple Guard, whose devious leader is his estranged sister, Queen Lily Pageon of Harrha Island. Fiercely intelligent, Lily specialises in dastardly technological inventions with the aim of bringing down the Discoucian Monarchy so that she may reign as its dictator. However, the heir to the throne is one Princess Josephine Olandine, whose youth and royal position masks her role in the Discoucian Secret Service.
Joining forces, Princess Josephine and Sir Arthur’s adventures will take them across the whole of Alavonia — from the fog-bound shores of Karga, to the secret underground shanty town beneath the frozen prison of Icester, south to the verdant city of Proceur and from there to the affluent Starfall Academy — in their quest to foil Lily’s revolutionary plans.
What I hope people will enjoy about Discoucia is the episodic content of how the action takes place. I like Anime series that have one story which is broken up into episodes and have action that is resolved in one episode but there are still overarching events that all come together on the penultimate or last episode. This makes the book easier to follow and allowed me to put the action in different elements, with Icester Prison representing Air, The Hot Fog of Karga representing Fire, The Blue Coven in Cesta is Water and Starfall Academy representing Earth.
The character of Archie is someone that I loved building up, since she started as an omnipotent god but became an elemental goddess in command of water. She has a lovely personality but gets into trouble since she has no idea how to act in true polite society. This becomes more apparent in books 4, 5 and 6 in what will be ‘The Air Trilogy’, when she changes her appearance to become a child again and assist Arthur and Jo’s children since they become more vulnerable after being raised with every privilege.
Sir Arthur Pageon as a character is the perfect foil of his sister Lilia, who has discovered that life becomes easier when you don’t fight the system or rock the boat but goes beyond his orders to save his sister from herself. He makes her bad qualities seem insignificant while trying to bring out her good qualities. Lilia wants to conquer the empire but by the time Arthur saves her she has all the ideas and the means but makes mistakes that can only come from her subconsciously wanting to fail and to go with her brother. She puts him into a mathematical trap that she knows he will escape from and leaves the time machine idling with one time stop left so she knows he will do something to stop her.
The moral of Arthur and Lilia’s tale is that the children suffer at the hands of the parents when they lose sight of what is important. Their father turned Lilia into a power hungry monster and drove Arthur away to the other side of the empire, while their mother died due to not escaping the family manor in time. It is slowly revealed that their mother was a morbid alcoholic and she left the raising of the children to a governess or a nanny as was the way in the Victorian and Edwardian era.
Princess Josephine begins to love Arthur for his loyalty to his family, and he proves to be an enigma to her thanks to what he does as opposed to what people say about him. All the information she has about him comes from his reputation and this is what she uses as a basis for her opinion of him. She wants to have a normal life and as such was relieved to find out that her sister Princess Alexandra was the one who would become Queen while she would remain a Princess. She doesn’t really behave as a Princess especially on the island of Availa when she does her best to beat Archie at an eating contest, it ends in a draw but her ladylike facade is destroyed with the copious amounts of barbecue sauce around her mouth.
The characters are what I loved to create the most because they could all have their own little identities and will develop over the course of the Alavonia Series, and my favourite character is that of Alicia May. She appears near the end of Discoucia and assists Archie’s nemesis Professor Cordelia Paradise in book number two before going off on her own in her own novel, The Goddess Called Alicia May. She begins as a school girl and moves up to becoming an arch villain in book 4 before undergoing a transition later on.
Discoucia continues on to Gemenicia, a quest to heal the continent using sixteen gems hidden in the sixteen cities, the only problem is that they are a beautiful treasure and no Lord or Lady would be prepared to part with. Archie, Arthur and Jo have to use their powers of persuasion and courage to capture the gems, since one is hidden deep below the sea in a sunken temple, another is kept by a secretive coven of Red Witches and one is kept in a pile of treasure so large it would take a lifetime to separate it from the other diamonds, rubies, emeralds and sapphires.
The book can be bought from Amazon.
About the author: Based in a small village in Oxfordshire Nicholas Lovelock is the author of the Alavonia series. As well as a passion for history, Nick holds a keen interest in Numismatics —the study and collection of coins, banknotes and medals— counting a 200 year-old 1826 half-crown and coinage of monarchs like Queen Anne, Elizabeth the First and Henry the Eighth as part of his collection.