I’m happy to welcome Annette Oppenlander back to Reviews
and Interviews. Today we’re chatting about the second book in her historical YA
action/adventure trilogy, Escape from the
Past: The Kid.
interview about book 1, Escape from
the Past: The Duke’s Wrath.
tour, Annette will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s
choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance
to win, use the form below. To
increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit
her other tour stops and enter there, too!
young adults and anyone who loves stories set in the past. When she isn’t in
front of her computer, she loves indulging her dog, Mocha, and traveling around
the U.S. and Europe to discover amazing histories.
history come alive. When we scrutinize people and places closely, history is no
longer a number, it turns into a story.”
time-traveling gamer, Max, intends to return to his friends in medieval
Germany, but mistakenly lands in the Wild West of 1881 New Mexico. Before Billy
the Kid can help, Max is taken prisoner by ruthless bandits who think he has a
claim for a goldmine. He also meets a beautiful American Indian girl…Well, I
don’t want to give away the story.
I’ve always been fascinated with the Wild West. I remember watching westerns
with my father and reading books about pioneers, American Indians and the gold
rush. After I moved to the U.S. I continued reading historical fiction set in
the eighteen and nineteen hundreds.
because I see him as a tragic character who encountered a string of bad luck
and was basically set up to fail. He isn’t much older than Max and it’s easy to
see how any young man could’ve had Billy’s fate. The second important character
is Chief Nana, A Warm Springs Apache warrior, who in the summer of 1881 rode a
3,000 mile vengeance war against the U.S. Army. He was never caught nor were
his fifteen or so warriors. The amazing thing about him was his age. He was
around eighty years old then and had a bad leg.
from the Past: The Kid:
I noticed a dust cloud growing rapidly larger. And from it grew an apparition
of terror as I’d never seen.
toward us, fanned out like the tip of an arrow. They rode bareback, their faces
painted black, red and white, their long oiled hair flowing behind them. They
wore leather pants with loin clothes and nothing but beads and feathers around
hadn’t even realized I said something except that Wade whipped around and
followed my gaze.
“Looks like Comanches.” He ripped his gun from the saddle holster, the other
men following suit.
blur. I felt myself slide off the donkey and race to the wagons for cover. The
settlers were scrambling underneath, getting in position. The girl raced to
grab the two little kids and shove them under the wagon.
if time had slowed to a crawl, the Indians, shrouded in a dust cloud, drew
near. Their faces looked hideous with the war paint, but their cries were what
made me tremble with terror. It sounded like something out of this world, eerie
whoops that curdled my blood.
I’d had any, my body was stiff with panic.
book in the trilogy, Escape from the
Past: At Witches’ End which takes Max back to the Middle Ages. The manuscript
is currently in editing at the publisher. My current writing project is a story
about two teens growing up during WW2 in Germany. It’s a love story based on my
family, but it is ultimately a story of forgiveness.
book? (or the biggest challenge with this book)
this new book set in wartime and postwar Germany is that I know the characters.
It’s quite emotional for me to write about my parents who went through hell and
barely survived the war. Maybe that’s why it’s taken me twelve years to write
the process. Do you do the research first and then write, while you’re writing,
after the novel is complete and you need to fill in the gaps?
front to get a good feel for the era my story is set in. I’ve got to understand
the lifestyle of people, their daily habits, the landscape, food, jobs, the way
they look at the world. I read several books before I start and research
libraries and archives.
to research because I always come across questions along the way. For instance
what does a pair of nylon stockings cost in postwar 1952 Germany? Between six
and twelve Deutsch Marks, a fortune, considering that my twenty-year old mother
only made DM100 a month.
What’s your writing space like? Do you have a
particular spot to write where the muse is more active? Please tell us about
is my office. I’m fortunate to have a nice large room and spend most of my time
there. On occasion when my back aches or I need a change of scenery I move to
the couch. I work with two laptops so I’ve got my big one for the desk and a
little Mac for the sofa.
of your genre?
love James Alexander Thom who has written a number of books set during the 19th
century. My favorite is Follow the River.
I’ve read J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” many times because I never grow
tired of this sweeping tale. Regarding craft, I love Don Maass’s books. They’re
all good and if everyone followed his advice, we’d have many more bestselling
books. I also enjoy Sarah Waters, Suzanne Collins and J.K. Rowling. Actually, I
could go on for a while…
reviewers have told me is that my stories appeal to reluctant readers,
particularly teen boys who love action/adventure. The first book in the series,
Escape from the Past: The Duke’s Wrath
has been highly recommended for school and library collections by the Midwest
Book Review. Reviews are beginning to trickle in for The Kid so stay tuned.
Thank you for having me,