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August 29, 2022 10:30 am

Thomas K. Carpenter

Many people think that writing a book is a lonely process, but that couldn’t be further than the truth. I wouldn’t be able to do this without all the help I get from others including my Vanguard Advanced Reading Team. The Vanguard provides wonderful feedback and starts the review ball rolling by posting reviews of new books within the first few days that they are released. I really appreciate all they do for me, and I wanted to shine a light on some of the awesome things they do.

This month we’ve asked Elaine a few questions and here are her responses.

Me: How long have you been a member of the Vanguard Advanced Reader team?

Elaine: I first joined the Vanguard 8/15/2017.  I saved my email from Tom telling me I made the team.  

Me: Who is your favorite character from the Hundred Halls Universe?  Why?

Elaine: I have two favorite characters:  Pax and Kali.  I feel they come as a team and I could never break them up by choosing only one of them.  I love how resilient Pax is and how independent she has been in her pursuit to learn more about the Animalian gifts and traits.  Pax also hoped to learn more specifically about Kali and how their fates are linked.  Pax is fiercely loyal to her friends and family and thinks fast on her feet to save those in her tight circle of friends.  

Me:  What is your favorite book and why?

Elaine: It is very hard to only have one favorite book from The Hundred Halls.  I am again torn between two and they are in the Animalians Hall books.  Arcane Mutations is a favorite because it truly stretched across continents as Pax and Kali traveled to Norway to see Pax’s grandmother, Baba.  This was a monumental decision because Pax did not return to her studies at the Animalians Hall.  She needed answers only her Grandmother could give her because Baba is the person who brought and gave Kali to Pax.  This trip to Norway was life changing.  There were many new magical creatures to encounter and a Russian Scientist that I would love to read more about.  I hope he will be seen again in a future book.  My next favorite is Untamed Destiny and is the 5th and final book in the Animalians Hall series.  It is a real roller coaster ride of danger and suspense at the Portland Magical Zoo, where Pax works.  Imagine Jurassic Park full of mysterious and deadly magical creatures only dreamed about during nightmares — that is what you find in this book.  I loved both of these books and have read each of the Hundred Halls series of books at least twice!  They are that good.

Me: What is something that you love about being part of the Vanguard?

Elaine: I love being part of the Vanguard Advance Reader team.  I honestly am thrilled to get my copy of each new book to read, before the book is released for sale.  I am always antsy waiting for the next book in the series, so my curiosity about what will happen with the Halls, students and Patrons.  I am honored to still be a member of the Vanguard ARC team and feel I am a valued team member.  I send comments back to Tom when I finish each book and know he genuinely appreciates my responses.  

Me: What are a few things you love about the Hundred Halls?

Elaine: The Hundred Halls is an exciting world of books.  The concept is so unique involving One Hundred different halls of study, each hall having its own magic, ability, and field of study.  There is travel to other realms which is dangerous on its own but all while discovering new magical beings and creatures.  I enjoy how some of my favorite characters will be brought into play in other Hall series’ when the situation requires involvement of more than just the one Hall that each series focuses on.  So the possibility exists of many more than just one series per each of the Hundred Halls.  I will be extremely happy if that does happen.

Thank you so much, Elaine! She is absolutely right that she’s a valued member of the team, and I really appreciate all her feedback over the years. If you’re interested in joining my Vanguard Advanced Reader team, please email me at thomaskcarpenter@gmail.com, so we can talk about it.

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