Monday, June 19, 2017

Realm Explorers Part XCVI: Visit Alora with Lara Ann

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:
Lara Ann

Title of book and/or series:
The Alora Chronicles

Brief summary of the story:
I’ve just met the perfect guy…pity he’s a figment of my imagination.
What happens when your dreams are better than reality?
Ash has been dreaming about Wyn, he’s different than anyone she’s ever met before. He’s been trying to convince her that he’s real and he needs her help.
It’s like something out of a fairytale and we all know fairytales aren’t true…right?

Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:
Alora is a parallel universe to earth. It is a land of forests, Elves and magic.

If we were to visit Alora as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?
Who wouldn’t want to see what an Elven city looks like? I know I certainly would. I would recommend doing a tour of the Castle and then taking a horse ride up to the lookout that gives you a view over the city all the way to the ocean. After that I would go and see the treehouse stronghold known as Sanctuary.

What dangers should we avoid in Alora?
Like anywhere, there are bad Elves that live in Alora. The place I would definitely stay away from though would be Onvyr. The Elves there would probably kill you once they realised you were human.

Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served in Alora?
Well Argus would probably serve you some eel stew and then laugh at you while you pulled faces. I would recommend some of the sweet desert balls as a favourite.

What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common in Alora?
Stave fighting is the predominant form of combat, although archery and magical elements are also used. The honour code says stave fighting is the true form of combat to display your fighting skill.

What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to Alora?
Elves ride horses or walk to get where they are going, although to travel between worlds you will need one of the rare travelling artefacts. The Jaega Locket belonging to Ash is the most powerful of the artefacts.

What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in Alora?  If there is magic, please give some examples of what it involves or how it’s used.
All Elves possess magic in the form of gifts. Some of these manifest in childhood, while others aren’t apparent until the Elf reaches adulthood at the age of 18. These gifts can be almost anything from the rare gift of mind telepathy with animals that Wyn has, to the more common gift of speed. Some gifts are used to help others like healing, where others can be used to inflict pain and influence mood.

Is there a particular religion practiced in Alora?  Please describe what it involves.
Elves believe in a Creator. Although this is not widely discussed in the books.

What is the political or government structure in Alora?  Who is in charge there at the moment, and what kind of leader is he/she?
Alora is a Monarchy, although the rule is not passed from generation to generation. Instead there is a competition of strength, skill and moral courage that determines the next ruler. All Elves are eligible to compete as we see in book 3.

Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?
The Elves are probably a reflection of what I feel makes a more ideal society. Although they certainly aren’t perfect, they strive to work together for the good of all. Even though there is a ruling monarch ideally they don’t see themselves as greater than the people they rule, but rather a a protecter and organiser of the society. This is evidenced by the fact that anyone can become King or Queen.

What, if any, “hot-button” or controversial topics do you touch on in your book?
Loyalty, war and racial inequality and social standing as well as slurs upon a person because of their birth parents.

Author Autobiography:
Lara is an Australian writer who writes young adult fiction. She lives in Tasmania. 
Having moved to the island state in 2013, the stunning coastline and beautiful forests inspired her to set part of her series The Alora Chronicles here.
In her spare time she enjoys wandering through national parks and chasing waterfalls with her family.

Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your books? 
All my books are available on Amazon

Where can readers connect with you online?

I hope you all enjoyed the trip to Alora.  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 another world in next week's edition of Realm Explorers!
-Annie Douglass Lima

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