Blog Book Tour | “The Last Gatekeeper” by Katy Haye #YALit has a strong voice in a #SelfPub debut novelist giving #scifi readers a hearty story to chew on!

Posted Saturday, 11 July, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By: My path crossed with Ms Haye on Twitter in November of 2014, whereupon I was quite curious about the premise behind her debut Young Adult novel: The Last Gatekeeper! When she offered me the chance to read the novel, I was hoping to have read and reviewed it during my 2nd Year of either Sci Fi November and/or the Sci Fi Experience (which is now expanded into Dec/Jan). However, due to circumstances that arose I was unable to read the novel and was attempting to sort out the best time to do so, when I read a newsletter for upcoming blog tours via Brook Cottage Book Tours.

I decided to post originally on the first day of the tour (Monday, the 6th) except to say I hadn’t expected the intensely horrid lightning storms that arrived over Fourth of July weekend, not only knocking me offline but causing a bit of issues electronically as well. I re-scheduled for Friday, the 10th thinking the storms would decrease and give me enough time to participate. Clearly I misjudged mother nature!

I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the author Katy Haye, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Keenly Interested to Read:

I was so wrapped up in the premise of this novel, as it had me thinking of the different ways Haye could have written the story for Zan! I love how it is science fiction with a wicked sweet twist on the genre itself!

I positively love reading YA novels (as you might already know) – for the most part as I do like to seek out novels which are ‘clean’ from strong language but even if there are stronger words, as long as they are infrequent and not appearing on every page, I’m alright. YA to me should always not include heavy words, but I know some YA authors do include them. Aside from that, I just love the world of YA & the stories where characters are on the verge of discovering who they are and how they fit inside their worlds. It is an epic time of self-discovery but also of seeing past the scope of where their own lives lead.

I love seeing characters who have gifts outside the range of what we would normally expect them to be able to do or understand; telepathy and TK (telekinesis) are two of my favourite gifts I like to see explored, but this one knitted into Haye’s debut: EHS – wow! I have seen a few tv movies deal with something similar but never on the level of a character like Zan! How lovely!

Blog Book Tour | “The Last Gatekeeper” by Katy Haye #YALit has a strong voice in a #SelfPub debut novelist giving #scifi readers a hearty story to chew on!The Last Gatekeeper
by Katy Haye
Source: Direct from Author

Zan knows she’s different. Today she discovers why …

Zanzibar MacKenzie knows she’s a freak. She has EHS – electrical hypersensitivity – which leaves her trying to live a Stone Age life in the twenty-first century: no internet, no phone, no point really. Then Thanriel knocks on her door and the dull summer holiday becomes maybe too exciting. Zan discovers fairies and angels are real beings from other planets, she herself is half alien, and the future of life on Earth rests on her shoulders.

This book is the first of the Chronicles of Fane series.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

Series: Chronicles of Fane, No.1

Also in this series: Beneath Creek Waters

Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards Badge created by Jorie in Canva. Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Read an Excerpt from the Novel | via the author’s website

Converse via: #TheLastGatekeeper, #KatyHaye, & #ChroniclesOfFane

About Katy Haye

Katy Haye

Katy Haye spends as much time as possible in either her own or someone else's imaginary worlds. She has a fearsome green tea habit, a partiality for dark chocolate brazils and a fascination with the science of storytelling.

When not lost in a good book, Katy may be found on her allotment growing veg and keeping hens in order to maximise her chances of survival in the event of a zombie apocalypse or similar catastrophe (yes, she does have a very vivid imagination).

Developing the back-story:

It is quite interesting to watch how a writer elects to introduce their audience into the the world they are building; to develop the back-story and then relate that part of the character’s journey to the audience is one of the best ‘moments’ when soaking inside a theoretical science fiction novel; theoretical here refers to the fact the elements of science contained within are on the fringes of where modern and classical scientists may or may not choose to accept the foundations of the science being explored herein. I love theoretical sciences because they push your mind to purport a dimensional idea based on theory and research without all the ties of threads being explicitly explained. Riddles within puzzles wherein scientists try to root out the cause and effect of how this experimental new frontier can plausibly exist. There is something quite extraordinary in where you can take your story and how far you can go as a reader within the world a writer has created for us to read.

Haye took the conventional approach (on the auspicious day of her birth) to drop us inside Zan’s life on the impetus moment of her seventeenth year where the suspicions she had about her Mum are not quite as grounded in what she felt had been the truth, but rather are such a radically unique truth, that it takes her a bit of time to resolve the impossibility of it all; whilst sensing in her heart, all is true and valid and right. It’s this point of turn she takes, finding she’s at a crossroads in her personal journey whilst intersecting with a zero point of tomorrow arriving so quickly it catches her breath without letting her feel as if she could handle the news of who she is nor how this affects what she is meant to do.

My Review of The Last Gatekeeper:

As soon as Thanriel walked into Zan’s life, she went from feeling like an isolated freak of an outsider to the realisation she’s wicked important to the fate of a planet named Fane (hence the name of the emerging series: the Chronicles of Fane) inasmuch as Earth itself. Caught between the edgy rebellish spirit of a angsty teenager who seeks independence and a normalcy not afforded to someone whose entire body breaks out in hives and extreme symptoms of sensitivity whilst near any form of electricity, finding out your ancestral past is a page ripped straight out of science fiction is quite the birthday gift!

Zan has lived such a closeted life away from others she is truly starting to come into her own right during the golden hour everything in her life changed. She has close friends, but due to her slightly awkward sensitivities it’s hard for her to become a part of what teens in the 21st Century enjoy experiencing – everything from music to films to tv serials. Her absence from pop culture and her isolated life controlled by the home schooling routine of her parents, who meant well but were not giving her everything she needed to develop into who she would become in the future; gave Zan the impression that there was an emptiness about her life. It was only half full and not fully expanded into what interested her as her parents had a way of making her feel that they had to protect her constantly in order to keep her safe.

It was only when circumstances changed in a blink, Zan had an opportunity for the first time to sort through the confusion and make choices that only she could make whilst dealing with a calamity of epic proportions. I appreciated how Haye wrote a realistic teen through Zan’s perception of what she was internalising to how she was addressing what was at hand. Her dialogue and internal thoughts were quite true to how you could nearly see yourself at seventeen reacting given the quickness of how her world started to unravell.

Thanriel was writ with a bit of a cheeky wit inside him, where as an alien visiting Earth only could project, he isn’t conscience of how we interact with each other, except for when it comes to personal relationships. There is a kinetic attraction between Thanriel and Zan; they draw towards each other for a specific reason, but there is more to it than the physicality of it. It is almost as though they each felt genuinely accepted by the other without having to express a reason for who they are or why they were different. Acceptance at first sight and a willingness to sort through the details as they went along is what gave them an endearing coupling.

The science involved as a gatekeeper involves the elements: air, fire, water, etc. working together with such a fierce power of colliding forces, the person wielding them has to keep intense concentration on their intentions. By the time we shift from Earth to Fane, it becomes further apparent that Zan is not only powerful but she has to learn more about the sacrifices of her people in order to save them. In her world, war and strife come in different ways, including what is required to be a gatekeeper in the first place. The unique way in which Zan can transport herself on Fane compared to the difficulties she faced on Earth are impressive. Part of me was curious if she could truly exchange one world for the other, re-define herself and embrace a new lifepath entirely.

This is a personal quest not only towards understanding one’s origin but understanding the responsible of an endowed inheritance that lends itself to extraordinary situations. Zan approached her adventure with an open heart and mind, even when she found herself anxious about certain aspects of what was requested of her, she gave it her all. The next chapter of the Chronicles of Fane is going to be quite curiously intriguing; especially if it jumps forward a bit in time! What a delicious treat to await!

Approaching coming-of age within YA with keen eye on science fiction:

I appreciated the duality of approach Haye gave The Last Gatekeeper, as due to how inter-personal she created Zan’s character, I could see how this book would cross-relate to teens and adults who might identity with the narrative of differences vs outward perception and tolerances of those differences. Zan has a sensitivity to modern life which forced her parents to create a Victorian gaslight and wood stove sources of energy for their personal uses; yet the underscore is her feeling of difference from others. That moment in your growing years where what sets you apart from your peers can weigh on your mind and affect how you feel your able to find your niche within the perimeters of society.

The joy is seeing how Haye wrote Zan and defined her as growing towards the acceptance that being different isn’t something to avoid but a gift to embrace. Even if your gift is powerful and can cause a bit of harm if you use it without being consciencely responsive to your actions; is a gift worth accepting because you can learn as you grow.

Haye used folklore and mythology a bit loosely in her approach to write the histories of the Fane and the Talvarrine; giving the series a bit of a grounding in stories readers might have read prior to picking up The Last Gatekeeper. There are elements of those prior stories contained within the novel, but Haye has found a way to create a bridge in and out of the genre itself. Angels and the fey have been explored in other series, including a few I have reviewed previously on Jorie Loves A Story; however, Haye approaches it from a familial angle, wherein the strength of the bond Zan has with her Mum and Dad is what emboldens her to attempt to right the sails from what the Queen of Fane is attempting to accomplish. This is where the suspense of the plot and the heart of the character merge together quite beautifully.

Haye gives solid advice in this lovely documentary of how a writer builds their legacy of stories, I was happy to spy numerous ChocLit novels in her stacks as I hadn’t realised she knew Ms Alison May (as I was visiting her blog) nor did I know we share an equal passion for the novels the ChocLit authors are writing! I must talk to her about this at some point, because I’d love to know her thoughts about Up Close (for instance!).

How to become a writer via Katy Haye

I love how at the end of the video the best statement she made is how sometimes the journey your taking as a writer deviates a bit from the path you felt you might originally strive towards achieving. I love how she choose to give The Last Gatekeeper a chance to find it’s readership through self-publishing. It’s a strong message to all writers who believe in their journey towards publication, that perhaps, there are moments where a non-traditional approach has full merit of being the best route possible! I know I will be grateful she made this choice, because without making it, I would not have met Zan and Thanriel; a fact that is too bittersweet and sad to contemplate!

I even appreciated how she knitted together their growing relationship; she gives a story most teens would be hungry to read because she is including a ‘first serious relationship’ into the story-line. Most girls who are seventeen or even sixteen, could relate to the growing emotional connection to their boyfriend and the choices that they will be making as their relationship continues to evolve. Haye gives credence to this time in our lives, where young love bursts open and gives us new experiences to process. I appreciated how she held back a bit from revealling everything on the page; giving the reader enough soul and perspective to understand what was happening in the scene, but let their imagination close the moment between Zan and Thanriel. Sometimes I think a scene of passion is even stronger without everything in full view of the reader.

Whilst keeping the emotional tides of youth and angst of coming of age fully center point, Haye has underwrit a beautiful science fiction narrative that is counter-balanced with a checking on morality and ethical grounds. She allows the reader to take the journey alongside Zan, but in so doing, the reader tends to follow suit in where Zan’s own rationalisation on the events which are happening at lightning speed lead us to follow. There is a lot happening all at once, but within those quick-paced jaunts, there is a stillness of thought and a contemplation on the greater whole of what it all means. In this, Haye has given a story that holds it’s salt whilst entertaining you at the same time. You want to stay in this world, because you’ve become keenly invested in Zan and how she’s evolving into the woman she never knew she’d become.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via

This blog tour is courtesy of: Brook Cottage Book Tours

Brook Cottage Books : Blog Tours & Promotionsas part of the

The Last Gate Keeper hosted by Brook Cottage Book Tours.

My review was delayed twice this week due to lightning storms; however, I am simply overjoyed I can finally share my thoughts on behalf of this debut novelist! In regards to the lightning, I’m hoping it was a one-off and will not repeat again soon! It wrecked enough chaos into my life and included a heap of tech support as my electronics were fried and affected outright. C’est la vie! Likewise, I wasn’t able to tweet as I read nearly as much as I would  have preferred, which is why I’ll be tweeting more as I share the link to this review as the days/week progress. Love finding Self Pub authors!

Reader Interactive Question:

What do you think would be the hardest to resolve whilst finding out at the age of seventeen: your sensitive to electricity OR your ancestral origins were partially non-Earth related!

Comment Box Banner made by Jorie in Canva.

{SOURCES: Book cover for “The Last Gatekeeper”, book synopsis and author photograph of Katy Haye were provided by the author Katy Haye and used with permission. The tour host badge and blog tour banner were provided by Brook Cottage Book Tours and used with permission. Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Comment Box Banner made by Jorie in Canva. Tweets embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. Author video on writing a novel had either URL share links or coding which made it possible to embed this media portal to this post, and I thank them for the opportunity to share more about this novel and the author who penned it. Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards Badge created by Jorie in Canva. Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2015.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Saturday, 11 July, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 21st Century, Angels, Blog Tour Host, Bookish Films, Brook Cottage Book Tours, Castles & Estates, Coming-Of Age, Compassion & Acceptance of Differences, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Faeries & the Fey, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Genre-bender, Grief & Anguish of Guilt, Indie Author, Inspiring Video Related to Content, Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards, Life Shift, Modern Day, Science, Science Fantasy, Science Fiction, Self-Published Author, Speculative Fiction, Supernatural Creatures & Beings, Supernatural Fiction, Suspense, YA Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction

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