Thursday, March 29, 2018

Blog Tour: Clod Makes a Friend (Interview & Review)

Book Details:

Book Title: Clod Makes a Friend by David J. Pedersen

Category: Middle-Grade Fiction, 174 pages

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Odysia Press

Release date: March 2018

Tour dates: March 26 to April 13, 2018

Content Rating: PG (There is no bad language, but there is one “boss fight” scene.)

Book Description:

Best Friend Ever?

Bullies love to hate Clod. Not just because he’s bigger, clumsier, and uglier than his classmates – he’s also the only student in his school without magic. In a world where all magic is possible and everyone else is born with great gifts to do amazing things, Clod is alone.

Living with his mum in a broken-down cottage on barely enough, the only thing Clod has to play with is the clay she occasionally brings him. Bleak is an understatement. More than anything, Clod wants a friend. The only way that’s going to happen, is to make one himself.

After an angry visit from the worst of the bullies, his teacher Learned Yugen, Clod’s clay sculpture of a little girl comes to life and introduces herself as Ada. For a clay girl barely the size of his hand, she has more confidence and courage than he knows what to do with. Every adventure she leads him on gets Clod into trouble. She may be the friend he wants, but is she the friend he needs?

After many years, and too many pranks, Yugen becomes convinced that Clod is tainted by the evil slowly infiltrating the Kingdom of Pag. Especially when Ada isn’t the only one Clod can bring to life.

Clod Makes A Friend is a bittersweet fairy tale for all ages from David J. Pedersen, author of the Angst series of fantasy novels.

Interview:

There are many books out there about bullying. What makes yours different?
People who are bullied often struggle to make friends, to the point that some aren’t very good at it – this can carry through to adulthood. Bullying can have long term ramifications on self-confidence as well. Since each chapter is a different year of Clod’s life, I was able to write about how he overcomes these issues by finding a way to believe in himself, and how to make a lifelong friend.
How did you come up with the idea for Ada?
I find the origins of homunculus fascinating. The concept of tiny people, created by alchemy, has been around since the 16th century. They’ve been written as dangerous, mindless creatures, or servants. Stories like Frankenstein, and, in my opinion, Pinocchio, have origins that began with the homunculus. This helped me form the idea of Clod being able to make his own friend out of clay. It also provided me a medium that people in that world could, understandably, be wary about.

What genre do you write and why?
I mostly dabble in fantasy, for now. I grew up reading fantasy authors like David Eddings and Piers Anthony and played lots of Dungeons & Dragons. They say write what you know. I think it’s also important to write what you enjoy. After completing my fifth Angst novel, I plan to work on a near-future science fiction / suspense story.

What is your writing schedule?
I either write after work at a local coffee shop until rush hour traffic subsides, or I write at home in the evenings. I tend to be a night owl with terrible sleep habits, but people tend to leave me alone at night so I can make a lot of progress.
In today’s tech savvy world, most writers use a computer or laptop. Have you ever written parts of your book on paper?
I started out writing on paper. It took a lot of effort to train myself to write on a computer. Since I have a limited amount of time to write, it’s important to be efficient. I’m glad I made the change. I struggle reading my own handwriting anyway!
If you could go back in time, where would you go?
My parents always said I was born in the wrong time. Either I should have been a knight during medieval ages or flying the Millennium Falcon during the Kessel Run. I’d be good with either, but until that happens (I haven’t given up hope) I’ll stick to writing about those things.
Favorite dessert?
While a truly decadent cake is my all time favorite, (I’m talking about the type that almost physically hurts to eat because it’s so rich), my favorite desert has been Crème Brûlée with my wife in Paris. It was a small, family-owned restaurant. We didn’t speak French, and the owner translated the menu for us. When we asked what dessert he’d recommend, he said Crème Brûlée with a fantastic flourish. It was as much the experience as it was the dessert.

Review: I wasn’t sure what to think of this story when I started reading it. It starts with Clod’s teacher being a real bully, about a student no less. Having deal with this in my life, I could easily identify with Clod and his mother. As the story progresses, we get more of Clod’s life, and how he learns to embrace his differences.  I ended up really enjoying this story, and am so glad I had the chance to read it! It’s well written, and told and written in such a way that both children and adult can read, understand, and enjoy this charming story.

Review:

I really enjoyed reading this children’s book! Clod isn’t like the other kids in his school. He isn’t rich, or smart, or magical. He lives with his illiterate mother, who works hard to provide a good life for them both. Because he is different, Clod struggles to make friends and finds himself unable to fit in.

I found that I could easily relate to Clod, and enjoyed reading his story, and seeing how his life played out. I enjoyed seeing his gift with clay and seeing him try to be a good person despite the difficulties.

While this isn’t a super long story, it is on the longer side for a children’s book, but is a fun read, and has plenty of surprises to keep the reader interested. I enjoyed the writing style and liked how it shows Clod throughout his life, from a child through his adult years until the time when he is an old man.

About the Author:
 
 
David J. Pedersen is a native of Racine, WI who resides in his hometown Kansas City, MO. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. He has worked in sales, management, retail, video and film production, and IT. David has run 2 marathons, climbed several 14,000-foot mountains and marched in The University of Wisconsin Marching Band and written 4 fantasy novels. He is a geek and a fanboy that enjoys carousing, picking on his wife and kids, playing video games, and slowly muddling through his next novel.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for featuring Clod Makes A Friend. I really appreciate the interview, and the great reviews!

    ReplyDelete