Fallon is the daughter of a proud Celtic king and the younger sister of the legendary warrior Sorcha. When Fallon was just a child, Sorcha was killed while defending their home from the armies of Julius Caesar.
On the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is excited to follow in her sister's footsteps and earn her place in her father's war band. She never gets the chance.
Fallon is captured by ruthless brigands who sell her to an elite training school for female gladiators owned by none other than Julius Caesar himself. In a cruel twist of fate, the man who destroyed Fallon s family might be her only hope of survival.
Now, Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries, deadly fights in and out of the arena, and perhaps the most dangerous threat of all: her irresistible feelings for Cai, a young Roman soldier and her sworn enemy.
- In your own words, can you tell us about The Valiant?
At its heart, The Valiant is the story of a girl who struggles to achieve her dreams in the shadow of her older sister’s legacy—but is forced to go about facing that struggle in ways she could never have imagined. With the added bonus of swords, battle kilts, deadly arena fights and a sexy legionnaire!
- Did anything in particular inspire you to write this Historical Fiction?
I’ve always been fascinated with ancient civilizations and cultures—particularly Celtic and Classical—but it was really some recent archaeological discoveries, along the reexamination of already-discovered artifacts, focusing new attention on the potential realities of female gladiators that really sparked my imagination with this story.
- We're introduced to a lot of amazing characters! Could you tell us a little about who we will meet? Any favorites?
Ha! I hate playing favorites—the other characters always make you pay for it! But, along with Fallon and her fellow gladiatrices (both friend and foe), I will say that I had a ton of fun writing scenes with some actual historical figures who make appearances in the story. It’s always an intriguing challenge to take the characters that are purely constructs of your imagination and introduce them to elements of the story that have tangible roots in reality.
- Sisterhood plays a huge part in this book. Did you base any of the characters off of people you know personally?
I generally don’t base characters off people I know in real life, and I don’t have any biological sisters, but I do have some amazing female friends I would call sisters (as I’m raiding their closets in true sisterly fashion!) and those relationships resonate in The Valiant, I think. I also have girlfriends who are amazing stunt-fighters and to say that I based certain aspects of Fallon & Co. off those amazing kick-butt ladies would not exactly be a stretch.
- If you could choose one quote to share from the book, what would it be?
Hmm… How about: “Uri, vinciri, verberari, ferroque necari!” *evil grin*
- Are you working on any other projects?
I am! In fact, I’m currently working on the sequel to The Valiant! It’s called The Defiant and I’m insanely excited about it!! You can read about the deal announcement for it here: http://www.lesleylivingston.com/new-book-deal-sequel-to-the-valiant/
Just a few fun questions!
- Which Hogwarts House would Fallon be sorted into?
Gryffindor, I’m pretty sure, with maybe a smidgen of Ravenclaw! (Ravens, of course, being sacred to Fallon’s goddess, The Morrigan!)
- What would be your weapon of choice going into a battle?
Last time I answered this question, I fought Retiarius-style. Think I’ll go with chariot and spear this time. Y’know, switch it up a little. Also – horsies!!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
is the author of Once Every Never, winner of the inaugural Copper Cylinder Award and shortlisted for the CLA Young Adult Book Award and the BC Stellar Book Award. She is also the author of the Wondrous Strange and Starling trilogies. She lives in Toronto.
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