Wednesday, August 12, 2015

6 Books with E. Catherine Tobler

E. Catherine Tobler was born on the other side of the International Dateline, which either gives her an extra day in her life or an extraordinary affinity when it comes to inter-dimensional gateways. She is the senior editor of Shimmer Magazine and lives in Colorado, which has a distinct lack of inter-dimensional gateways, but an abundance of mountains, which may prove mad indeed.

1. What book are you currently reading?

I got an early copy of The House of Shattered Wings by Aliette de Bodard (who will be joing us for her six books on 8/25! -ed), thanks to Netgalley. This book is about a vaguely post-apoc Paris, and that is absolutely in my wheelhouse. Fallen angels, fashion, great houses, conspiracy, politics, murder mysteries. Lucifer is on the prowl in every shadow and it's just unexpected and fantastic.

2. What upcoming book you are really excited about?

The Crown & Key books juuuust came out this summer, from Susan and Clay Griffith, and they look like an amazing combination of steampunk, urban fantasy, historical hijinks, and maybe romance (I hope romance!). They appear to be a trilogy: The Shadow Revolution, The Undying Legion, The Conquering Dark, and I am really eager to read them.
3. Is there a book you're currently itching to re-read?

I haven't read The Lord of the Rings in quite some time, but recently bought the digital version, and would love to revisit Middle Earth. Some of Tolkein's passages are so very striking; especially haunting are the scenes where Sam and Frodo are looking for water in Mordor.

This spring, I revisited the Gateway series by Pohl, in anticipation of its eventual television series. I'm surprised how well it holds up--I read it first when I was in high school and did not expect to love it as much as I still do.
4. How about a book you've changed your mind about over time--either positively or negatively?

This is a difficult question, given our relationship with books is often be influenced by our circumstances when we first read or encounter a work. The winter I was twenty-one, I was terribly sick and reading a staggering amount. I encountered Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. This book swept me away and I was enchanted--even more when I discovered it was not a stand-alone, but the first in a series. Devoured. While this is still a series I read, my opinion of it has changed greatly--because I have changed greatly. When I read it at 21, I was not someone who thought much about rape or how it is so often used/portrayed in books and television. It never occurred to me exactly how much it is used--though now it does. I look at those books and cringe to think exactly how many people are raped within them. Gabaldon does one unusual thing with it in book one, but beyond that, the series dilutes the horror, because it happens so very often/

5. What's one book, which you read as a child or young adult, that has had a lasting influence on your writing? 
I would say it's a trio of books--or perhaps worlds is the better word. Narnia, Oz, and Wonderland all absolutely shaped my reading mind and later my writing mind. The idea that our world could be opened and one could enter entirely different worlds was amazing to me. How I longed to be Dorothy or Lucy or Alice. I wanted to meet baffling creatures in snowy woods, fight wicked witches, and drink myself silly at tea parties.

6. And speaking of that, what's *your* latest book, and why is it awesome?

My latest book is more a novella, The Glass Falcon. It's part two in the Folley & Mallory Adventures, a series set in turn-of-the-century (the last century, that is!) Paris and Cairo. This second adventure takes the shapeshifting pair to the Louvre, to solve a mystery that may be buried in the bone-laden catacombs beneath Paris. It is absolutely about stepping from our world and into another, and surviving the perils (and delights) one discovers there.