Orphaned teenager Jake is taken by his Aunt to live in Cornwall. Cut off from his previous life and banned from contacting his old mates he makes friends with Anna, a local girl and discovers a strange ability to draw places he's never seen. Together, Jake and Anna face unknown dangers as they unwittingly become involved in a quest for an ancient artefact.
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My name is Carenza Basset and I'm honoured to have been invited to make a guest posting. I’m the author of the Kernow Trilogy, the first volume of which is The Hollow Sword. I live in the south of England and I’m a Company Director of a property company. I am also a qualified Blue Badge Tourist guide with specialist interests in history and archaeology. For fun, I own five German Shepherds! I have set my books, as "Kernow" suggests, in Cornwall.
Why did I decide to write about Cornwall?
Cornwall is a mysterious country, (and yes I do mean country!) and I know of no other place like it for inspiring creativity in all its forms. Daphne du Maurier, Winston Graham, Howard Spring, William Golding, Derek Tangye, and WJ Burley are just some of the authors who found inspiration here. Slightly less well known is Denys Val Baker, who wrote twenty six autobiographical books about life there, as well as several novels.
So what is it about Cornwall that inspires?
It is truly a place full of myths, legends and superstition. Even its landscape is mysterious – but it’s more than that - in Cornwall you don’t just sense the mystery, you feel it. It lies in the air and in the earth. It lies in the long windswept beaches, in the wooded creeks and on the bleak granite-clad carns. You especially feel it in the winter. Wherever you are, it totally surrounds you. How could one not feel inspired?
At the beginning of the series, teenager Jake, who is suddenly orphaned, is taken by his aunt Cara to live in Cornwall. On his late father’s instructions, city boy Jake is cut off from his previous life and banned from contacting his friends. Rebuffed by the local lads as a “foreigner” he reluctantly makes friends with a local girl, Anna. Jake’s life changes out of all recognition and he suddenly discovers a strange ability to draw, particularly of places he’s never seen. Together, Jake and Anna face unknown dangers and they unwittingly become involved in a quest for an ancient artefact. The big problem is that Jake doesn’t know what he’s looking for and he’s not certain who he can trust...
Together, Jake and Anna are drawn into a mystery as ancient and compelling as Kernow itself! Like Jake, I lost my father at an early age so I was able to identify with his emotions as he dealt with his grief and anger. Not long after my father’s death my mother and I spent time in Cornwall. Cornwall helped with the healing process and, like Jake, I made good friends there. I continued to revisit Cornwall over many years and became very familiar with the county. When I discuss it with friends, I am always amazed by how many people tell me that they sense the very same feelings about it! How many other regions can say the same?
It took me eighteen months to write The Hollow Sword. It was an exciting journey! Using memories and imagination along with skills honed during my career as a tourist guide I pored over large scale maps as I researched, and used both books and the internet to discover myths and legends to intertwine and add to my plots. Cornwall is a rich tapestry of myth and legends, and, as it weaves its magic, one never knows if they are true or not!
Unfortunately, I am not able to return to Cornwall as often as I would like. I miss it. It’s definitely time I went back...
Find out more at http://www.thehollowsword.com/
and follow Carenza Basset on Twitter @CarenzaBasset