Sunday, November 6, 2016

Realm Explorers Part CXV: Visit the Magical Realm with Diane Rapp

Welcome to Realm Explorers!  In this weekly series, we visit a variety of unique worlds created by talented science fiction and fantasy authors.  Enjoy your travels!  And don't forget to read to the bottom of the post to find out more about each author and see how to purchase the featured book. 

Author’s name: Diane Rapp

Title of book and/or series: Dragon Knight: And the Heart’s Blood Curse

Brief summary of the story:

While sleeping off a large meal, Dragon is rudely awakened by a foul-tempered witch. Bellatrix becomes hysterical upon learning that Dragon ate her daughter, and the witch performs an irrational act.  Dragon tried to explain that the girl was already dead when she arrived in his cave, but the witch wouldn’t listen to reason.  She invokes the Heart’s Blood Curse which transforms Dragon into a human knight—a disgusting situation. To reverse the horrid spell, Dragon must perform a brave deed for a young sorceress, who is the only being that can return him to his magnificent dragon-form once again.  Dragon must learn to fight in human guise to save humans from a vile demon.  Many obstacles lie in his path, and he must learn to get along with humans to complete the quest—revolting idea.

Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:

This fractured fairy tale takes place in two separate realms, a magical realm and a mundane world (modern Earth) that are linked by a common history.  The magical realm was separated from the mundane world in centuries past, after ordinary people stopped believing in the power of magic.  Of course magic had to go somewhere and the magical realm formed.  Both realms are threatened by the Underworld, where demons and ghouls exist. As you might guess, it’s a very hot place.

The magical realm was a happy and safe place until the demon Sandoval arrived from the Underworld.  He learned to capture dead musicians from the mundane world and use their potent music to change people into vile creatures, such as vampires, zombies, giant spiders, harpies, and ghosts. 

If we were to visit the magical realm as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?

Tourists could visit a western ghost town, the zombie castle, a vampire villa, or a black canyon filled with giant spiders.  As you might guess, there are dangers in each place.  It is recommended that visitors hire a magical fairy for a guide if they wish to survive the journey. 

What dangers should we avoid in the magical realm?

Regular people in the magical realm fall victim to mundane music when Elvis, John Lennon, Janice Joplin, Johnny Cash, or Jimmie Croce sing!  Be sure to bring heavy-duty ear plugs to avoid hearing these famous dead musicians, or you might become a giant spider, zombie, ghost, vampire, or harpy.

Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served in the magical realm?

Human food is similar to the mundane world.  However, Dragon’s favorite dish is “maiden” and he enjoys water liberally laced with brimstone.  A human knight could hardly imbibe such exotic fare, therefore, Dragon consumes bland human food and drink during the journey—a disgusting idea.

What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common in the magical realm?

The magical realm favors the Earthly time period when knights defended feudal kingdoms.  Swords, bows and arrows, and magic are the weapons employed by knights and wizards.  When the demon uses mundane music as a potent weapon, local wizards were caught off guard and had no spells to counteract his attack.

What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in the magical realm?

Horses and travel by foot are common unless you happen to possess wings like dragons and fairies.  It’s slow travel for Dragon with many dangers to face along the trail.

What types of plants, animals, or sentient races might we encounter in the magical realm that we don’t see on Earth?

Animals and people originated from the same stock as the mundane realm, however, new creatures evolved from centuries of concentrated magic.  Creatures like fairies, unicorns, ogres, and dragons are commonplace in the magical realm.  Since pure magic dripped down stalactites onto eggs, dragons emerged as the most magnificent creatures of power.  Vibrant waves of magic (similar to northern lights) changed colors in the sky and plants or trees fed by magical rain. 

What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in the magical realm?  If there is magic, please give some examples of what it involves or how it’s used.

Magic is in the air and in the water and it fuels all power in the magical realm.  As most formidable magical creatures in the kingdom, dragons were slaughtered by Sandoval’s minions.  Dragon may be the last of his kind to exist and the only creature capable of killing Sandoval.  As magic gets sucked away while musicians perform their songs, Sandoval becomes stronger.

There is also a different kind of magic in the mundane world.  When wizards cross into the mundane world, they discover that magic wands turn into smart phones, magical transportation exists in a Prius automobile.  They learn about the magic in music and must prevent the demon from capturing Jimmy Buffett.  They pray that Dragon and Robyn can destroy Sandoval in the magical realm before all is lost.

What is the political or government structure in the magical realm?  Who is in charge there at the moment, and what kind of leader is he/she?

This is a feudal society with castles and kings, sorcerers and knights, the usual fairy tale stuff.  Wizards are governed by the Ministry of Magic which creates rules.   A Ministry guide is sent to help wizards navigate through the mundane world, and he provides mundane money and advice about using smart phones and laptops.

Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?

I enjoyed reading fantasy stories like The Princess Bride and the Xanth series by Piers Anthony—a very funny series full of puns about mythical creatures.  I decided to add humor that might appeal to adults in this fairy tale and hope readers might enjoy a bit of fun.  (I also included three short stories to provide a sample of my more serious writing for readers.)

What, if any, “hot-button” or controversial topics do you touch on in your book?

In this story “Global Warming” is caused when the demon cracks the barriers between the worlds and lets heat leak through from the Underworld.  He plans to use Jimmy Buffett’s volcano song to destroy the barriers between the worlds and allow the Underworld to rule supreme!

Author Autobiography:

Diane Rapp became an entrepreneur when she opened her own dog grooming salon in Santa Barbara, California. She spent the next thirty years as a small business owner; she sold real estate, started an office supply/copy center, and performed free-lance advertising design. During all those years Diane wrote stories as a cure for insomnia.

After teaming up with her daughter to write a tour guide book to the Caribbean, Diane’s daughter gave her the idea of writing a mystery set on cruise ships in the Caribbean.  The result became three High Seas Mysteries.  But Diane’s favorite genre is science/fantasy. Diane’s love of animals shines through in a series that incorporates telepathic wolves and dogs into her stories.  (There are dragons in the series as well.)  Readers can enjoy four novels with more in planning stages.

Diane’s most recent release is a combined historical adventure and modern mystery.  “Golden Legacy” features two stories in one novel.  A journal written by Ginny in 1888 becomes important to familiar modern characters from Diane’s High Seas Mysteries.  The characters use Ginny’s journal and other clues left by subsequent ancestors to find a hidden family treasure near Ouray, Colorado.  Diane includes actual old-time photos in the book to enhance readers’ enjoyment during the adventure.

Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your book(s)?  Please include links.

Dragon Knight: And the Heart’s Blood Curse is available in Kindle and Print formats exclusively from Amazon at 

Where can readers connect with you online?

Visit to learn more about all of Diane's books and connect by e-mail.

I hope you all enjoyed the trip to the magical realm.  Questions about the world or the book?  Ask them in the comments and the author will get back to you!  

Click here to read other posts in the Realm Explorers series.

Please join us again next Monday for a trip to the fantasy kingdoms of Trabor and Shayal, in Realm Explorers Part CXVI!
-Annie Douglass Lima

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