Towers - Fairy Tale Castles: Christine explains Towers and Tithes
FAIRY TALES OF THE MAGICORUM
Christine Bauer
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Monster House Books

I’m a Tower Tithe with a Rapunzel problem. That’s not as weird as it sounds. Ever wonder how Rapunzel survives without leaving her home? After all, someone must stock groceries, buy hair products and fix the plumbing. Witches don’t wield toilet brushes, so “Rapunzel care” becomes the job of Tower Tithes like me. Not that we choose this gig. We’re just unlucky elves who get magically chucked into servitude. Since our kind live for ages, being a Tower Tithe can drag on for thousands of years… and I’m eighteen. Yipes. That said, it wouldn’t be too awful if I had a cool Rapunzel. No such luck. I serve none other than Lady R, the social media sensation and sadist who lives in Manhattan’s famous Apex Towers. With the help of her manager—a witch named Jocasta—Lady R releases daily gossip videos while assigning me “torture chores.” Many tasks are designed to remind me how Lady R is the gorgeous variety of elf, while I’m beyond plain. I spend a lot of time scheming my escape. My work pays off when an eccentric billionaire offers to magically set me free. The catch? I must move to Arizona and become his personal assistant. Needless to say, I rush for the door. Turns out, my new employer is none other than Lady R’s ex-boyfriend, Dex, a guy who was blinded in a strange accident and has since become a recluse. In other words, I ran from my fairy tale life, but it found me again anyway. At this point, I should head for the hills, yet I simply can’t leave Dex. For the first time, I truly feel comfortable around someone. In all honesty, it’s probably because I have self-esteem issues and Dex can’t see my bland face. Even so, it’s all good until Lady R discovers where I am. And that leads to my Rapunzel problem. With Lady R back in the picture, can I still find my happily ever after? The truth will emerge soon enough. Because my name is Grayson Eyre, and this is my story. Ideal for readers who crave a mash-up between Rapunzel and Jane Eyre.

TowersAndTithesBlitzBanner - Fairy Tale Castles: Christine explains

Ideal for readers who crave a mash-up between Rapunzel and Jane Eyre.

My Fairy Tale Inspiration – Ash Maiden (The Original Cinderella)

By Christina Bauer Author

As part of the launch tour for my new fairy tale romance, Towers and Tithes, the lovely folks at Bouncing Tigger Reviews asked me to share the folk stories that inspired me. Honored to share! In my case, a big part of my inspiration for all my books comes from the original version of Cinderella, what the Brothers Grimm called Ash Maiden.

How did this happen? Time to hit the way-back machine. 

When I was nine years old, I got my hands on a copy of Grimm’s Fairy Tales from the 1890’s. It had a pretty red embossed cover; it had lovely woodcut illustrations; it had gruesome stories that were freaking terrifying. I loved it instantly.

Thanks to this wonderfully nasty book, I got to know the original fairy tales in all their pre-Disney horror. Few of the stories had happy endings. Snow White, for example, was a dumbass who kept taking obviously-dangerous gifts from her stepmother until a pair of shoes danced her to death. The moral? Use your brain, twirp. There won’t always be a huntsman around to save your pretty face.

Ash Maiden was one of the few tales that ended well, but for one simple reason: Ash Maiden (what was later Disney-fied into Cinderella) worked her tuchus off…And not in the ‘sweeping the floors with happy rodents’ way that we think about today. Yeah, you read that right. Ash Maiden’s main challenge in life was NOT boring chores, her mean step-mother, or ugly step-sisters. Bizarre, huh?

Here’s the shocker (to me anyway): in the original story, Ash Maiden’s big problem was that she lost her mother and had grief work to do. And no, I am not kidding.

Don’t get me wrong; our lovely lady worked hard. She was forced to sleep in the ashes and given a not-so-clever nickname. But Ash Maiden didn’t weep every day because she had chores to finish or teasing to endure. She cried because she missed her Mom. It was mourning that drove Ash Maiden to plant a seed in her mother’s memory. Every day, she’d find time to be alone and cry, her teardrops falling on the tiny seed until, bit by bit, it grew into a massive tree.

SIDE NOTE: This is something I love about the original Grimm’s fairy tales. No easy answers. People had to empty lakes with thimbles, stay trapped in animal-form for centuries, or cry on a seed until it grew into a huge goddamn tree. Got problems? Shut up and grab a thimble, bitch.

Back to the story. For those of you who’ve lost a loved one, you know what Ash Maiden was going through at this point: the valley of the shadow of death, one tear at a time. And Ash Maiden’s ball gown? Fell out of that freaking tree, along with her famous shoes. In that tree perched a bird that led her to her Prince. There was no fairy godmother, no quick fix. It was this young girl’s unflinching bravery in facing her sorrow that brought about positive change in her life…and that thought inspired me to write nrave ladies who kick ass, take names, and fall in love.

I hope you enjoyed this insight on Towers and Tithes… and I look forward to seeing you on future launch tour!

Book Reading Order

FAIRY TALES OF THE MAGICORUM
1. Wolves And Roses
2. Moonlight And Midtown
3. Slippers And Thieves
4. Shifters And Glyphs
5. Bandits And Ball Gowns
6. Fire And Cinder
7. Fairies And Frosting
8. Towers and Tithes

Author Bio

AB Christina Bauer pic - Fairy Tale Castles: Christine explains

Christina Bauer thinks that fantasy books are like bacon: they just make life better. All of which is why she writes romance novels that feature demons, dragons, wizards, witches, elves, elementals, and a bunch of random stuff that she brainstorms while riding the Boston T. Oh, and she includes lots of humor and kick-ass chicks, too. 

Christina graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School with BA’s in English along with Television, Radio, and Film Production. She lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby.

Be the first to know about new releases from Christina by signing up for her newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/CBupdates

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Comment ( 1 )

  1. Christina bauer
    Thanks for sharing! - CB author

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