Thursday, January 7, 2016

Pen Pal Blog Tour and Giveaway: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Welcome to the pen pal blog tour for Truthwitch by Susan Dennard! Today, Jess (Jess Hearts Books) and I will be discussing Truthwitch, as well as we'll have the one and only Susan Dennard chatting too! Stick around for all the juicy (but non-spoilery) gossip!

Please see Jess's blog for her lovely post!

The Discussion:

Alyssa & Jessica: Hey everyone! Welcome to the Truthwitch blog tour! Today’s stop is hosted by Alyssa (USA) and Jessica (UK). We’ll be discussing Truthwitch in the most non-spoilery way that we can. Join us in the comments!

Alyssa: Truthwitch was quite the whirlwind! What’s one word that encompasses how you felt about the book when you finished? For me, it was probably something along the lines of “OMG”. Although that’s technically not a word… or actually it’s three words… but you get the idea. The book was just WOW!

Jessica: I think for me it was “FINALLY” I don’t think I realised how much I was craving a book about an epic female friendship until I read Truthwitch. Sure, you see strong female friendships in contemporary all the time, but it wasn’t until I read Truthwitch that I realised how lacking they are in Fantasy. Usually the heroine is too busy trying to save the world to keep up with her girlfriends so it was fantastic to see two heroines go on an adventure together here.

Alyssa: I didn’t think of that! I think I was more concerned about the fate of our protagonists. :D But that’s so true - YA non-contemporary lit has a bit of a scarcity in strong female friendships. I think one of the the reasons why I love fantasy the most is because of the epic story - but it’s so important to show some female solidarity in what used to be a heavily male-dominated genre. One of my favorite female friendships in non-contemporary YA is Ismae and Sybella’s, from Robin LaFevers’ His Fair Assassins series (one of my favorite series in YA!). Despite being separated for a book and a half, the pair maintain their strong connection and stand with each other with the duchess. They grew up together and fought together and learned the ways of Death together - not an easy friendship!

Jessica: I love that series too!  I think it’s brilliant that Truthwitch is bringing female friendships into the limelight especially for a teenage audience in YA. As a teenager the most important thing to me were my friendships and so it’s great to see that being reflected more and more in YA. Truthwitch got me thinking about other strong female friendships that I’ve loved in books. Staying in the fantasy genre I love the friendship between Celaena and Nehemia in the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas . I think that Sarah and Susan’s friendship is reflected in their own characters which is wonderful to see.

Alyssa: Celaena and Nehemia’s friendship surprised me! I wasn’t expecting them to be so deeply connected, but I loved how their friendship came about. It’s such a beautiful reflection of Sarah and Susan’s relationship! As well as Safi and Iseult’s friendship. I love seeing authors who are such good friends! Another set of powerful relationships in YA fantasy is the six girls in the Waterfire Saga by Jennifer Donnelly. There are six girls who are linked together by ancient magic, and while they had a rocky start when they learned about each other, their friendship and connection became very unshakeable. Especially Serafina and Neela’s! They are like sisters. All of these strong friendships show that there can be an epic plot and all the impending doom of saving the world, but a girl can always have time for friends! And other relationships, amirite?

Jessica: Speaking of other relationships, who are you shipping in Truthwitch!? As well as friendships Sooz does romantic relationships so, so well. I could practically feel the chemistry sizzling off the page for some couples! There is a ball scene early on in Truthwitch that had me blushing! My favourite ship though is a bit spoilery so I don’t want to say too much here but let’s just say it involves Iseult and had me feeling ALL OF THE FEELS come the end of the book!

Alyssa: Oh my goshhhhh, I ship Merik and Safi so hard! I think by now, most people know at least about this couple. There are (in my opinion) two other ships in the book BUT *zips lips*. For any readers interested in a swoony Merik/Safi scene, I shared one during the Waterwitch Babes blog tour! One of my favorite scenes - along with the ballroom scene. I loooove the pair’s banter. There are two other pairs, one of which is not quite a ship - yet! What do you think - will Sooz go in that direction in the next books? :D

Jessica: I think she will! I’ve spoken to a couple of friends who have read it and they seem to think the same which I’m very excited about.

Alyssa: It would be so great! I love that pair. My favorite ship has to be Merik and Safi though. While I love the girls, Merik is my favorite character - he’s got a bit of a temper, which I love. He’s also so duty-bound and driven, and he has good intentions and a fierceness about him that I really like. He’s so devoted to Nubrevna, which is honorable and respectable. But mostly, I like his temper. The first meeting between him and Safi is precious!

Jessica: I’ve seen a lot of love for Merik! I think my favourite character has to be Iseult. I can see a lot of  Iseult and Safi’s relationship between myself and my best friend. When we took the quiz on the Truthwitch website to find out which character we are I wasn’t the least bit surprised when she got Safi and I got Iseult. I see a lot of myself in Iseult, she’s very relatable to me so I think that if I had to choose she would be my favourite character.

I see you’re in the Water clan - are you a Waterwitch then? I love all of the different types of witchery in this book and can never decide which type of power I would like to have! I took a quiz (yes, I am addicted to these quizzes okay?) that placed me as a Waterwitch but I also love the idea of being a Wordwitch! If any readers would like to find out what type of witch they’d be you can take the quiz here.

Alyssa: Yes and no! I was placed as a Voidwitch when I took the quiz, which I took twice (“Void is the element of power. It is creative and inventive and dark. Your choices reflected an original mind, open to many things. Void is the possibility of everything.” - I’m okay with that!). BUT I definitely identify with the Waterwitches - as a Waterwitch clan of Sooz’s Witchlanders street team. I love the street team! It’s a lot of fun and we do tons of creative promotional stuff, rather than spammy repetitive messages. Sooz is fantastic! 

I think being a Waterwitch would be epic - the Waterwitch in Truthwitch is one of my favorite characters. I think being a Poisonwitch would be interesting (as it is a subset of Waterwitchery)! I’m a chemistry nerd so the thirst for that type of knowledge is there. I cannot wait to discover more types of witches in the future books! Do you think we’ll get to meet more rare types, like Truthwitches or witches from the Void like Aeduan?

Jessica: I LOVE the street team. I have a few friends who are part of it and it looks so fun! Ohhh you’re right a Poisonwitch would be so interesting. I love that there is so much potential for different types of magic in Truthwitch and I definitely think that more types will get revealed throughout the series. I felt like in Truthwitch we were only just being introduced to this world and new magic system and that Sooz has so much more in store for us! Because I got to read Truthwitch early there is such a long wait for book two and it’s already killing me! Trying to keep this spoiler free, what would you like to see from the next book?

Alyssa: Ahem, more from the ships! Safi and Merik (it IS called Windwitch!), but also development of the one ship that we shan’t spoil! I’d also like to see Safi develop and wield her Truthwitch power, which I think is very probable. I also think we’ll see a lot more of Aeduan and his internal struggle with certain… things. And you?

Jessica: Most of the things that I want to see more of are spoilery! Let’s just say that I’d love to learn more about Safi and Iseult’s friendship and what that means for this world. I’d also love to see more of Aeduan and the ship that we can not spoil!

Alyssa & Jessica: Thanks for reading our discussion *cough* fangirling *cough* of Truthwitch. We’d now like to welcome Truthwitch author Susan Dennard to join the discussion and answer our question for her. 

Susan's Guest Post:

Our question to Susan -- If you and your friends lived in the Witchlands what would you get up to and what types of witches would you all be?

Susan: If my friends and I lived in the Witchlands…Well, as much as I’d like to day we’d be down in the Pirate Republic of Saldonica raising a ruckus, let’s be honest! My friends and I (most of whom are authors) would probably live in the canal-filled, trade hub of VeƱaza City. We’d all be Wordwitches (able to magically manipulate spoken and written word to persuade or tell fantastic stoires), and we’d probably sit in a coffee shop all day while we waxed poetic. ;)

Hmmmm, the pirate option as way more fun, wasn’t it? 

Thank you for joining us, Susan!

About the Book:

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
Book One of The Witchlands series
Publisher: Tor Teen
Publication Date: January 5, 2016

Summary (from Goodreads):

On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.

In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.

Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.

Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.

Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

About the Author:

Susan Dennard has come a long way from small-town Georgia. With a masters degree in marine biology, she got to travel the world—six out of seven continents, to be exact (she’ll get to Asia one of these days!)—before she settled down as a full-time novelist and writing instructor.

She is the author of the Something Strange and Deadly series (from HarperTeen) as well as the forthcoming Witchlands Series (Tor, 2015). When not writing, she can be found hiking with her dogs, exploring tidal pools, or earning bruises at the dojo.

Follow Jess:

The Giveaway:

The Water Clan of Susan's street team (Waterwitch Babes) are hosting a giveaway! As a member of the Babes, I'd like to share the giveaway. You'll win a pendant (picture below), and a button. Open internationally!

Follow the Blog Tour:

Tuesday, January 5th:

Amanda from One More Page and Jamie from Perpetual Page Turner

Wednesday, January 6th:

Heidi from Ya Bibliophile and Isha from Two Sisters Blogging

Thursday, January 7th:

Jess from Jess Hearts Books and Alyssa from Eater of Books

Friday, January 8th:

Lucy from The Book Belle and Hannah from The Fandom

Monday, January 11th:

Tuesday, January 12th:

Bridget from Dark Faerie Tales and Daphne from Winged Reviews

Wednesday, January 13th:

Beth from Words From A Reader and Lili from Lili's Reflections


  1. Started this one last night- just got to where Merik and Safi. Laughed so hard!

    1. Angela! I hope you love the rest of the book! ^_^

  2. Amazing post, Alyssa! I definitely identity with the Water Clan myself and I wouldn't have it any other way. Even if that quiz wants me to be in the Fire Clan. I certainly don't need to be sold on how much I am going to LOVE Truthwitch. You hit the nail on the head when you say that the street team has been more creative than spammy. My brain is still recovering from all of those party ideas we concocted! <3

    1. Thank you, Olivia! Waterwitches for life! I hope you love Truthwitch (you will) - I can wait to squee with you when you read/finish. Huge hugs! I've loved getting to know you better!

      And right?! Our clan had some really great party ideas though!

  3. Aww, is it too early to feel nostalgia for our Water clan shenanigans? :D I loved reading this post - it was great to read a conversation about the book and all it's awesomeness. I'm with you on Merik - he is yummy! :D So far I'm more drawn to him than Aeduan, but there is still time for Sooz to change my mind! :)

    1. NOT TOO EARLY! I miss it already. I'm glad I'm not the only one that is more interested in Merik than Aeduan! But like you said, we have another three books to go, for our minds to turn. :D

  4. Nice discussion Alyssa. I was really happy to be a part of the waterwitch babes with you all and I am so impatient to read Truthwitch.

    1. It was a pleasure and an honor, getting to know you and work with you! I hope you love Truthwitch, Carine. =)

  5. Amazing post Alyssa now you got me super excited to read this book it looks and sounds utterly fantastic! I did the test and I got air which I believe is pretty accurate for me lol. Thanks for the amazing post my friend!

    1. You can't miss it, Katiria! And the air clan is awesome! In the Witchlanders street team, they were the closest to our competition. ;D Thank you, Katiria!

  6. What a fun discussion! I am so excited to read about Merik and Safi (in dire need of a new OTP to ship) AND THE REPEATED MENTION THAT EVERYONE SHIPS THEM ALREADY HAS ME SHIPPING THEM EVEN IF I HAVENT READ THE BOOK YET :D So happy that I got to know you through the Truthwitch street team <3 great post! :)

    1. I SHIP THEM SO MUCH! Merik is my type of man. ;D And the secret ship! Gah! It's kind of barely there so far, but I'm sure it will be fleshed out in the next books. I hope you LOVE Truthwitch, Kaina! Thank you!

  7. I love your fangirling/discussion!! And you already know I really ship the other-ship-that-is-not-exactly-a-ship-yet!!

    1. Thank you! And yaaaaasssss! We NEED that ship to be a real ship!

  8. Yay for awesome interview. <3 Thank you for sharing about it Alyssa :) You are awesome. I still haven't gotten my won pre-order, but sooon. <3 I'm so curious to read this book. Just hope I will love it too :)

    1. Oooo! I hope you receive it very soon! And read it ASAP, Carina!


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