Hey, folks! It’s finally time to reveal the cover for the Quenby Olson’s phenomenal novel, Miss Percy’s Pocket Guide (to the Care and Feeding of British Dragons), the first in the A Miss Percy Guide series. I’ve had to privilege to read an ARC copy, and it is one of my favorite books of the year (for the second year in a row, if you count the version you can find on Quen’s Patreon.)
Before the reveal, though, we’ve got a bit of a Q&A!!
How does it feel to be so awesome?
This question boggles my poor mind. As someone who was definitely Not Cool at any point in my early life, just the thought that people would associate the word ‘awesome’ with my existence or what I do with it is…
Nope, still boggled.
Is there going to be a real “guide” as an item in the book? Or is the book itself intended to be the guide?
There are excerpts from the “real guide” in the book, at the start of every chapter. So this is a book based on the story surrounding the origins of the “real guide” of which the reader is treated to pieces of and… um. Yes. (Also, the “real guide” does not exist outside of those excerpts. In this world, I mean. In Miss Percy’s world, she’s a fairly prolific writer.)
How big are these British dragons? Because somehow the pocket guide makes them seem small and cute, but is that really the case?
The Guide is pocket sized, the better for being able to carry it on oneself while adventuring after the dragons, which come in all shapes, sizes, colors! (This is probably a bit of a spoiler. Whoops.)
If you had a pet dragon, what kind would it be and why?
It would be Fitz, Miss Percy’s dragon. Absolutely and 100%. Because I based Fitz on my first cat, who was named Dog (though my dad called her Nermal), and I suspect this might have been my way of eking out a bit more time with her, giving her a place in this story so I could come back to it whenever I wanted.
What’s a question you wish people asked about you/your book more often?
Well, how I came to be so awesome, of course.
What is your favorite part about this book?
Mildred’s journey. When the book begins, she’s in her early forties, she’s unmarried, no children, no fortune, living off her younger sister’s charity. And she’s fully accepted that as her fate, no matter how much she dreamed of adventure when she was young. It was exploring that hidden desire in her, watching her face the prospect of being the heroine of an adventure story – when she thought such things weren’t for people like her – that was (and is!) my absolute favorite part of the whole series.
What part scared you the most?
Pulling that off without failing completely.
What grabbed you about this book that made you start writing it, and what influences shaped that process?
It was the beginning of the pandemic (so… March of 2020) and the week before things went into lockdown, but the threat of it was already looming, the idea started pushing to the forefront of my brain pretty quickly. It was an absolute comfort story (cake, cozy English village, baby dragon) and I think it was almost a defense mechanism to write it, fighting off the anxiety of … *gestures at the world*… everything with this quirky little story about a middle-aged lady who really likes the previously mentioned cake and is suddenly thrust into a fantasy adventure.
With all the cakes/biscuits/tea in this book, I’m now curious if you have a favorite kind of any/each?
Hmm. I bake a lot, so this is a bit like choosing my favorite child. But I’m going to say ginger cake, shortbread biscuits with raspberry jam filling, and orange spice tea.
Oh my gosh, I’m so hungry now.
What can we expect from future installments in this series?
More. I’m trying to think of what I can say without spoiling anything, but definitely more. The second book takes place in Wales, so there is some traveling that’s going to occur. And some mischief and mayhem (both human and dragon) will play a significant part. But the world really expands for Miss Percy after the events of the first book, showing just how much myth and magic has been simmering beneath the surface of the world everyone believed to be thoroughly devoid of those things.
Synopsis and Cover Reveal
Miss Mildred Percy inherits a dragon.
Ah, but we’ve already got ahead of ourselves…
Miss Mildred Percy is a spinster. She does not dance, she has long stopped dreaming, and she certainly does not have adventures. That is, until her great uncle has the audacity to leave her an inheritance, one that includes a dragon’s egg.
The egg – as eggs are wont to do – decides to hatch, and Miss Mildred Percy is suddenly thrust out of the role of “spinster and general wallflower” and into the unprecedented position of “spinster and keeper of dragons.”
But England has not seen a dragon since… well, ever. And now Mildred must contend with raising a dragon (that should not exist), kindling a romance (with a humble vicar), and embarking on an adventure she never thought could be hers for the taking.
Miss Percy’s Pocket Guide (to the Care and Feeding of British Dragons) by Quenby Olson
Series: A Miss Percy Guide (#1)
Expected Publication: October 26, 2021
Genre: Comedic Fantasy
Cover by: Mon Macairap (https://www.artstation.com/monmacairap)
Cover Design: Kay Villoso (http://www.ksvilloso.com/)
Quenby Olson lives in Central Pennsylvania where she spends most of her time writing, glaring at baskets of unfolded laundry, and telling her kids to stop climbing things. She lives with her husband and five children, who do nothing to dampen her love of classical ballet, geeky crochet, and staying up late to watch old episodes of Doctor Who.