The last time Nerine Dorman visited Muse In The Valley, she had just released her book INKARNA. Our interview in July 2012 (view here) left in me in awe. She is a busy and powerful woman working hard at her passion. Today, Nerine writes a guest post for Author Of The Week. Do not forget to stalk her social media, and check out her books. All links are featured below.
Although Camdeboo Nights only released this year, it’s one of my oldest novels, and it spent a lot of time on submission before I eventually had it contracted to Lyrical Press. Back when I wrote it, probably around 2008/2009 I was still experimenting a lot, and decided to tell one story from multiple points of view. One of the reasons why I did this was because of unreliable narrators (I love them, okay?). None of the characters have the full story, and readers are often kept guessing until I return to a particular character’s point of view. I found this method kept the pace quite fresh and I had loads of fun being able to show much more of the story had I only stuck with one viewpoint character. So it’s a bit of an Indiana Jones meets Supernatural, as the characters get thrust out of their comfort zones and into high adventure.
Of course a big selling point for the novel is the fact that it’s set in South Africa, and tells the tale of four young people from very different backgrounds who find themselves dumped in the midst of a war between dangerous enemies. It’s vampires vs. vampires vs. mages, with a whiff of another ancient mystery ghosting around the edges. Helen Ashfield is central to the plot, a young woman who discovers that she has the potential to be the lynchpin in this ages-old conflict. Added to the mix are Trystan, a vampire who’s unable to come to terms with his state of being; a little person named Etienne, who makes up for his size with his pluck and big heart; and Arwen, who really is a witch (and her parents named her after a character from Middle Earth).
Everyone has their favourite character, however, which is what I intended, and early feedback from readers has given me many secret smiles. I can’t, of course, pick favourites, as each of these four friends are very dear to me, depending on what my frame of mind is. What I love about Helen is that she’s always trying to keep the peace, and give folks the benefit of the doubt. She sticks up for the underdog, and also won’t readily back down in a conflict situation.
Trystan I love because he’s suffered a whole world of hurt, mainly through his own foolishness in the past. He lives with the guilt (and is paralysed by it) of having killed his one true love many years ago. Up until the point where he meets Helen, he’s kept himself pretty much isolated, and it’s wonderful seeing how she teaches him to feel again. But don’t expect the icky Twilight-esque love and romance you get in most YA fiction, okay?
Etienne and Arwen know each other well, and have both suffered a lot at their school, tormented by bullies. Etienne makes up for Arwen’s often prickly nature and I absolutely love the visual of the two of them together: Arwen in all her carefully poised goth witchiness and Etienne, somewhat gauche yet full of bravado.
But I’m tickled pink to share some of the positive responses I’ve had for the story:
“This book is reminiscent of an Alice In Wonderland type-tale which starts out as an ordinary teen under duress as a result of her parents’ divorce. When a strange boy shows up on her balcony one night, a chain reaction begins that culminates in a snowball of wow after WOW!” – Carrie Clevenger, author of Crooked Fang
“In a genre filled with dystopian settings peopled with teens fighting huge social and ethical problems, Nerine Dorman’s Camdeboo Nights is a refreshing change. The South African setting is at once wild and mysterious, but hardly dystopian. Her characters suffer problems that are huge to them – bullies, family issues, falling in love with the wrong person, but typical teen issues.” – Amy Lee Burgess, author of The Wolf Within series.
As for a follow-up, yes, there’s definitely one planned, but not in the way that you’d expect it. I intend to pick up the story about five to ten years after the events that take place in Camdeboo Nights, and already have some pretty earth-shattering ideas. But it’s a case of wait and see for my readers. I can promise that the ideas are really cool, though.
So, in the meanwhile, you can buy Camdeboo Nights at:
For my other titles, check out my Amazon author page.
Or my Smashwords page
An editor and multi-published author, Nerine Dorman currently resides in Cape Town, South Africa, with her visual artist husband. Some of the publishers with whom she works include Dark Continents Publishing and eKhaya (an imprint of Random House Struik). She has been involved in the media industry for more than a decade, with a background in magazine and newspaper publishing, commercial fiction, and print production management within a below-the-line marketing environment. Her book reviews, as well as travel, entertainment and lifestyle editorial regularly appear in national newspapers.A few of her interests include music travel, history (with emphasis on Egypt), psychology, philosophy, magic and the natural world.
Her published works include Khepera Rising, Khepera Redeemed, The Namaqualand Book of the Dead, Tainted Love (writing as Therese von Willegen), Hell’s Music (writing as Therese von Willegen), What Sweet Music They Make, and Inkarna.
Titles co-written with Carrie Clevenger include Just My Blood Type, and Blood and Fire.
She is the editor of the Bloody Parchment anthologies, Volume One, and Inferna: and Other Stories. In addition, she also organises the annual Bloody Parchment event in conjunction with the SA HorrorFest.
She is also a founding member and co-ordinator for the Adamastor Writers’ Guild, and edits The Egyptian Society of South Africa’s quarterly newsletter, SHEMU.