Monday, September 14, 2020

#GIVEAWAY Review The Nowhere Witch Interview with author Donna Augustine

Today I'm welcoming fave fantasy author Donna Augustine to The Reading Frenzy to chat about her new release, book 2 in her Tales of Xest series, The Nowhere Witch. Plus she's generously sponsoring a #Giveaway, details below.
Enjoy our conversation and my review!

Publisher: Strong Hold Publishing
Release Date: 8-28-2020
Length: 296pp
Source: Author for review
Tales of Xest #2
Buy It: $2.99 @ Amazon/B&N/IndieBound


Getting back to Xest was the easy part. It’s staying here that seems to be the problem.

I have three hags, also known as Xest Immigration, hot on my tail trying to deport me back to Salem. The wall I built in the Unsettled Lands is in jeopardy. Hawk, a man who was once my ally, can’t decide if he wants to lead the horde trying to drive me out or kiss me. Not to mention, everyone keeps calling me the Nowhere witch, and I’ve got a bad feeling it’s not a compliment.

But when the betrayals start rolling in, I realize I’ve got bigger problems. Staying alive becomes the most important issue of the day.

Giveaway is for one e-copy of

 The Whimsy Witch Who Wasn't
Book #1 in The Tales of Xest
Open Internationally
Please Use Rafflecopter form to enter
Good Luck

My Interview with Donna:

Donna Hi!
Welcome back to The Reading Frenzy.I loved book two in your new fantasy series, The Tales of Xest, The Nowhere Witch.How many books will this series have?Thanks for having me back! Right now, I’m figuring four books but it could run longer. There are a lot of things that I’m building toward that I’ve barely touched, even after two books.

It’s easy to imagine where authors of contemporary or historical novels get their ideas and inspirations but I’ve always wondered where fantasy authors get theirs. 
Care to share?I wish I knew. Most ideas strike me when I’m not thinking about writing. I’ll be driving or showering, and just letting my mind wander, and something will come to me out of nowhere.

A lot of your novels have sidekicks and I have to admit I love Dusty the dust-bunny and the monkey trio in this one. I find it eases the darkness.Is that why you put them in or do you just love sidekicks?I’d like to say I’m that planned out, but they usually just show up. In real life, I tend to rely on humor in stressful and dark times. Unfortunately, I tend to be the person with the inappropriate jokes at funerals that either draws cringes or laughs. Because I tend to write darker books, it bleeds out there too.

So tell me about the creative process you undertake, do you use a board on the wall or on your computer? Where do you keep everything straight?This is a huge issue for me. I’d like to dump it all out somewhere, but I tend to keep most of it in my head. As I’m writing, I’ll occasionally write down notes of smaller things I’m afraid I’ll forget, but my brain is pretty much bursting at the seams with all the broad strokes. I’m not sure I could write if I did unload it all, because I tend to mentally shift the puzzle pieces around as I go.

You usually have three or occasionally four book series, yet I can name many costars in this series that could have a book of their own.Have you ever considered a longer running series?The biggest issue is I’m typically ready to move on mentally after four books. It seems to be my attention span. Sometimes after a break, I want to go visit again, like I did with The Wilds, and I’ll add on a couple more. It really comes down to how much fun I’m having in that particular world.

Except for Camilla who left behind a loving family and fiance in your Karma series most of your heroines are loners/orphans etc…Why is that?Probably because I like writing damaged characters. I like the growth opportunities and it’s just more fun when I start out with a bit of a train wreck and let them evolve.

You sometimes skip around and release a new series novel before you end a current series.Why is that? Does your muse rule your life?It’s sad to say but yes. I believe in always following the strongest inspiration. I don’t want to feel like I’m writing a book to get it out. It would make me miserable and I think the reader would sense that as well. I’m trying to get better about it but if I’m really feeling something very strongly. I’m going to jump to that idea. Luckily I’m pretty happy in Xest right now.

Some authors like to have a regimented work schedule and some just write when the mood hit them.Where do you fall?I write six days a week unless I take a vacation. That’s where my regiment ends though. My writing process itself is a scattered mess. I start a book by writing down scenes that hit me, with only a vague outline in my head. I’ll write an end scene, and then a beginning scene the next day. Some days I’ll start ten different chapters with only a few lines in each. At some point, I’ll start weaving them together and then I’ll do the rewrites from beginning to end.

I’m a baby boomer in my mid 60s and believe it or not we e-met in late 2014 wow almost six years ago through social media at the beginning of your Karma series. What kind of age range are your fans?Wow! It’s crazy how much time and how many books have gone by.
As to my readers, I tend to get a wide range, everything from boomers to older Gen Z’s. A lot of my protagonists are younger but they’ve been beaten up by life enough that I hope most people can relate to them on some level.

Donna thanks so much for taking the time to chat and for the lovely giveaway you’re offering.Will you be finishing up the Xest series first or is your muse already whispering sweet nothings in your ear?Thanks for having me! I always love visiting with you! As to the next, the muse seems pretty happy to be in Xest, so I’m not complaining. I like when he’s happy and content!

My Review:

The Nowhere Witch
Donna Augustine

Book 2 of Donna Augustine’s Tales of Xest, The Nowhere Witch continues the story of Tippi’s making friends and influencing people in Xest and in it Donna gives Tippi some big fish to fry. The narrative is direct and even paced giving readers a very needed dose of now and then humor with the steady stream of foreboding, the world building contains both familiar and new places and continues to impress. The characters some returning and some new are all over the top some funny some scary and a few of the standouts are Dusty, the dustbunny and the See no Evil, Speak no Evil, Hear no Evil trio of monkeys that become Tippi’s entourage and are part of that needed humor that readers will thank Donna for. The frienemy relationship between Tippi and Hawk becomes more defined by the end of book 2 but not enough that readers won’t want to get their greedy hands on the most anticipated book 3!!!!

Tippi Tudor has never felt at home ever since returning from Xest back to her old life in Salem or as she now knows, Rest, a life that now feels even more alien than before. There’s good news and bad news when she finds herself unexpectedly back in Xest, good to reconnect with old friends, bad that she’s no longer a whimsy witch but a Nowhere witch-non-grata, which could get her kicked out of Xest if she can’t get immigration to okay her permanent move here, bad that her old frienemy Hawk wants her gone. And really bad that the wall she built in the unsettled lands is failing and the evil she bound there is leaking out. Now if she can only get permission to stay in Xest, stop the evil and convince Hawk that she belongs everything should be just peachy, unfortunately peachy is not usually what she gets and this time is no different.

About Donna:
Donna Augustine is the USA Today Bestselling author of The Wilds, Karma and Ollie Wit.
Sign up here to be notified of her new releases.

Donna Augustine was an odd child, had a brief moment of conformity in early adulthood and then decided to embrace her craziness as the years rolled by. It's her inner crazy that she credits with coming up with the ideas for her books. One part hypochondriac, a few dashes of paranoia, topped with a sliver of uptight and delivered with a relaxed flair, she kicked the proverbial box down the yellow brick road a couple years ago to embrace her true self.
She can be reached by a carrier pigeon, set free in a south by north direction, where she resides in Neverland with her two Siberian cats. Cats who, by the way, aren't as hypoallergenic as she believed they'd be.
For the conventional minded, and those of you without a pigeon on hand, she can be reached at She responds to most emails within three dusk periods.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This sounds delightful. Thanks for sharing, Debbie.

  2. What a great interview. Learned quite a bit! Hugs, RO

  3. I enjoyed reading about her process. I can fully understand moving on to new inspiration, it would awaken the creativity juices and enthusiasm for the process. Well done to the muse!

  4. Ruled by the muse.. lol Great interview Debbie. This sounds good!

  5. Really neat interview, enjoyed learning about your new release.