Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Interview with Laura E. Weymouth for A Treason of Thorns

A Treason of Thorns

by Laura E. Weymouth
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: September 10th 2019
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
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Violet Sterling has spent the last seven years in exile, longing to return to Burleigh House. One of the six great houses of England, Burleigh’s magic always kept the countryside well. And as a child, this magic kept Violet happy, draping her in flowers while she slept, fashioning secret hiding places for her, and lighting fires on the coldest nights to keep her warm.

Everything shattered, though, when her father committed high treason trying to free Burleigh from the king’s oppressive control. He was killed, and Vi was forced into hiding.

When she’s given a chance to go back, she discovers Burleigh has run wild with grief. Vines and briars are crumbling the walls. Magic that once enriched the surrounding countryside has turned dark and deadly, twisting lush blooms into thorns, poisoning livestock and destroying crops. Burleigh’s very soul is crying out in pain.

Vi would do anything to help, and soon she finds herself walking the same deadly path as her father all those years before. Vi must decide how far she’s willing to go to save her house—before her house destroys everything she’s ever known.

Content warnings are available via the author's website.

Can you briefly describe A TREASON OF THORNS and its characters? 

A Treason of Thorns is the story of Violet Sterling, the dispossessed daughter of a treasonous nobleman, who’s given the opportunity to return to her ancestral home after her father’s death. But Violet’s home, Burleigh House, is no ordinary English manor—it’s one of five Great Houses, ancient and sentient places of power that govern and guard the health and wellbeing of the land. Vi loves Burleigh House and Burleigh is devoted to her, but when she does return, she soon realizes that her House is, in fact, slowly dying. That could have very serious ramifications for the surrounding countryside, so Vi is faced with the difficult decision of risking everything to save her House, or putting it down, as many people believe she should. 

Who would you say is your favourite character from the story and why? 

Burleigh House, because it was so much fun as a writer to get to write both setting and character at once, and to convey emotion and information through things normally viewed as set-dressing. 

How did the story occur to you? Did you find inspiration anywhere? 

A lot of disparate pieces came together to form A Treason of Thorns, but the very earliest seed was a microfiction I wrote on Twitter, about a girl sitting in an enchanted garden, waiting to entertain an unwanted suitor. 

If you could choose one song to describe your book, which one would it be? 

Burning House, by Cam. No contest. 

If your book was going to be made into a movie, who would play your characters?

Aaaaaaah, I’m honestly terrible at fan-casting! But there’s a Dutch model, Luca Hollestelle, who IS Violet Sterling in my head. I’ve never pictured her any other way. That’s the only person I have a super clear vision of in Treason, though. 

Fall is almost here, and we love to find a cosy place to read our favourite books. What drink and place do you think will go with your book to have a perfect book date? 

I mean, I think you’d have the IDEAL reading experience if you could bring the book to one of the inns around Taunton, Somerset, and have a glass or two of scrumpy while you read. Since that’s a little cost-prohibitive for most North American readers, I’d recommend reading it outside under a tree on a crisp and sunny fall afternoon with a thermos of cider. Preferably near where someone’s burning brush, so you get the benefit of the smell of woodsmoke. 

Can you recommend your readers any other books in case they are left hungry for more once they finish A TREASON OF THORNS? 

Well, obviously I have to recommend my first book, The Light Between Worlds, which is the story of two sisters struggling to deal with the aftermath of coming back to our world after having a portal fantasy in another. It’s about loss and longing and belonging, and is another excellent fall read. If you’re looking specifically for Gothic vibes, like A Treason of Thorns will provide for you, I recommend either The House of Salt and Sorrow by Erin Craig (a wind-swept, remote retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses) or Beneath the Haunting Sea by Joanna Meyer (which I have occasionally described as the love child of The Secret Garden and The Silmarillion.) 

What’s next for you? 

A nap! And then work on a number of projects I can’t talk about quite yet!

Laura Weymouth is a Canadian living in exile in America, and the sixth consecutive generation of her family to immigrate from one country to another. Born and raised in the Niagara region of Ontario, she now lives at the edge of the woods in western New York, along with her husband, two wild-hearted daughters, a spoiled cat, an old soul of a dog, and an indeterminate number of chickens. She is represented by the inimitable Lauren Spieller of TriadaUS.


  1. I'd be happy to live at Burleigh House even without magic!--I've added this to my TBR!

  2. Not sure what it is about the cover that I love so much. It just stands out to me. I love a lot of YA genres. Fantasy, paranormal, dystopian, etc.

  3. YA fantasy is my favorite genre so this book is definitely on my TBR.