Welcoming author Angela Norton Tyler to the blog:
Q: Tell us a little about yourself.
A: I was born in the Bronx (New York), but we moved to the Bay Area when I was two. I actually remember bits and pieces of driving across the country as a two year old with my parents. Currently, I live in Sacramento (CA), but I did most of my growing up in Oakland (CA), and that will always be my hometown.
I received my undergraduate degree from Wellesley College (MA), my teaching credential from Holy Names University (CA) and my master’s in Children’s Literature from Hollins University (VA). They are all women’s colleges, and now my daughter attends another amazing woman’s college, Mills College (CA)!
Q: When did you start writing, and why?
A: I have always written, though not, of course, professionally! I was writing stories and making little booklets when I was four years old. 3. What do you write, and why? What do you enjoy about what you write? I write both fiction and non-fiction, although I most DEFINITELY prefer fiction! I love escaping to other worlds, and the best way to do that (besides dreaming) is to create those worlds myself.
Q: What is your latest book or series? Any forthcoming books?
A: I am working on a children’s series about a princess and her family that live inside a terrarium: Princess Brownie. I told you that I love escapism!
There will definitely be a sequel to Queen Mother!
Q: Introduce us to some of your characters. What do you like about them?
A: I love all of my characters! I have to admit that I don’t feel as though I really created them, however. They showed up, said things, did other things, and constantly amazed me! I used to hear writers say this, and I thought they were crazy! Now, I get it.
That being said, my favorite character is Matai. He is one cool dude- wait and see what he does in the sequel!
Q: A fun fact you would like your readers to know about you or your book.
I’ve always had vivid dreams, but the dream I had about The Kingdom one night in 2009 was particularly amazing. I woke up, heart pounding, and I immediately scribbled the entire dream into a notebook. It goes without saying that slavery was an utter abomination, but the very idea of the Kingdom brought me such peace and a feeling of closure. It was a story I felt compelled to share.
About Queen Mother:
Was the Middle Passage their last journey?
Imagine that not all of those counted as dead are truly gone.
Imagine that some of the bravest found freedom in a paradise beneath the ocean and joined others who chose to die rather than suffer through slavery.
Imagine that they sent us a King.
Queen Mother is the adventure of Nala, an orphaned African whose search for romance and relevance takes her from slavery and the Middle Passage to wisdom and royalty in The Kingdom.
Nala, a young African woman orphaned half her life, has been treated more like servant than a beloved member of her uncle’s family. Nala dreams of true love and a life free from her cousin Shazila’s constant demands and bullying. After a magical night of romance with Prince Adomi, the future King of Swaziland, Nala becomes pregnant. When she hears of a prophesy foretelling that either she or Shazila will be Queen Mother, Nala knows that she is the Chosen One. The problem? Adomi intends to marry Shazila. Determined to tell Adomi that she is carrying his child and that he has chosen the wrong bride, Nala sneaks away from her village.
Nala falls into the clutches of Red Beard, a brutal slave catcher who subjects her to nights of degradation and days of non-stop walking. After a harrowing, months-long journey, Red Beard eventually sells Nala onto a slave ship headed to America. After learning that she and her child will never reach Adomi, Nala jumps ship.
Nala arrives at The Kingdom, a paradise beneath the ocean filled with others who chose death above slavery. Nala’s child, Matai, is born and lauded as King. Wise friends arrive to teach Matai The Seven Lessons to prepare him to someday leave The Kingdom and begin his own epic journey.
Will Nala, now Queen Mother, allow Matai to leave The Kingdom so that he can save his ancestral home and assume his rightful place as King?
This adventure written by African American author Angela Norton Tyler blends historical fiction with a touch of fantasy. Adults and teens will fall in love with Nala and Matai and will benefit from the life lessons taught by the wise teachers of The Kingdom. Queen Mother gives us a proud alternative history and an exciting, hopeful future.
Let Queen Mother Inform, Entertain and Transform You!