13 May 2017

Book Tour & Giveaway ~ The Heart of Escher by Jonathan Dance



James Fisher, a lonely, bullied schoolboy, finds himself in the dark and twisted land of Escher after wishing himself away from an ill-fated family holiday.

Lost and frightened, James must help heal the dying world of Escher, overrun by the creatures of the Nightmare forest, to return home.

Guided by the emerald-eyed cat, Sam, and befriended by the headstrong resistance fighter, Jasper, James is taken on an adventure through a world mirroring his own nightmares, where he is forced to confront his own fears and the ghostly Shadow in order to save Escher.

Unbeknown to James, not only is he fighting for Escher’s future, but also his own.



Check out the trailer!



Born and raised in Hampshire, I spent most of my childhood dreaming up random adventures.

I left the sunny south coast to study Graphic Communication in Bath, where I fell in love with the rolling Somerset hills when I wasn’t walking up them.

Returning to Hampshire 6 years later, after meeting my now wife, Claire, I enjoy a quieter life, walking in the New Forest and relaxing with my wonderful wife and fluffy cat Molly.

I have always enjoyed telling stories, more often than not in visual form, either in films or animations. However, the idea of Escher was too big for me to do visually by myself so I picked up a pen and started writing.

Having written one novel, I am now keen to tell more stories of Escher, while at the same time expressing my imagination with my art.


Interview with Author Jonathan Dance

Are you currently working on a project, and if so, can you tell us anything about it?

I am always working on one project or another. However, the one I am most excited about is my newest story concept, with the working title, ‘The Search for Escher’. Once I have firmed up the narrative, my plan is to create a short animated trailer. Combining my two passions, art and storytelling, to create a promotional piece which will hopefully generate some interest in my new concept.

If you weren’t an author, what other profession would you be in?

I would be an artist. Art has always been my first love, followed by telling stories.

If you had 3 wishes, what would they be?

1. I’d wish I could live somewhere nice and quiet in the countryside, by a lake. Somewhere peaceful where I could relax, write and draw.
2. I wish I could fly. Wouldn't it be great to whizz off anywhere on the globe just like Superman? I am sure it would be fun too.
3. I would love to be involved in creating a film version of The Heart of Escher.

Where do you write?

At home, sometimes at my desk or in bed.

How long does it normally take you to write a novel?

The Heart of Escher, took about 3 years to write, but I had been working on the idea for over 10 years. It took me a long while to finally find the belief in giving writing ago. Having learnt so much whilst writing this novel, I hope it won't take me as long the next time.

What are your inspirations?

My friends, as I work in the creative industries I am surrounded by so many talented people. Seeing the amazing work they do, inspires me to achieve my own personal goals. Hopefully, they enjoy seeing what I come up with as much as I enjoy seeing their amazing work.

How did you come to write this particular book or series?

The idea stemmed from something my dad once told me. Whilst driving through France, just before we entered a long tunnel, my dad told me.
“If you keep your eyes closed, and wish really hard when you arrive on the other side you could end up wherever you wished.”
For some reason, this concept got stuck in my head, and over the years I gradually started to imagine how a story could work around this idea.

What was the hardest part of writing your book, and how did you overcome it?

Spending many hot, warm, summer days cooped up inside writing.

What kept me going was a determination to get this book finished. Helping this goal was a personal deadline I set myself, well a deadline me and my wife set, and that was a date we hoped our first child would arrive.


Except

The argument at the front of the car was becoming more heated, and his dad’s driving was more erratic. The car turned suddenly as his mum pointed to a sign she recognised, and they found themselves driving down a dark road where the trees created a dense archway, only letting little trickles of light through their thick, tangled branches.

If it wasn’t bad enough, Rosie was now crying loudly, as the last turn had made her bang her head on the edge of her seat. The downhill road merged into another, darker than the last yet a little wider, but no smoother.

In the distance, James could see the small entrance of what looked like a long tunnel under a large hill, dressed in a scattering of tall trees. His mum was trying to calm Rosie down while at the same time getting an earful about keeping an eye on the map.

His dad was certainly in a foul mood, and James felt he could no longer cope with this journey. Please let me out of this car! His legs were painful and all he could hear was shouting and crying.

He could see a white light at the end of the tunnel—presumably the exit at the other end—yet there was something odd about it. It appeared to move, as if the tunnel was shrinking. As the light got closer, James imagined them emerging from the tunnel to find themselves on the right road and almost at their destination, bringing this nightmare trip to an end.

The car speeded up, entered the tunnel quite fast, and James closed his eyes. I wish I could be anywhere but here.

As if his wish had been heard, his vision filled with light until he felt as if he were floating in space. Silhouetted, he could see Samuel, but then he lost him as a horrible screeching noise tore through his head. It turned into a reverberating thud that pained him more than the worst headache he’d ever had.

I need to wake up he thought, panicked, but he couldn’t even breathe, let alone open his eyes.

He felt a heavy impact on his back, and the air returned to his lungs with a whoosh. His eyes jolted open.


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