Sunday, 29 January 2012

Midnight Oil by Marva Dasef

My special guest today is Marva Dasef. Marva's first book in the Witches of Galdorheim series Bad Spelling came second in the children's fiction section of the recent P&E reader polls. It also appeared in the Top Ten of the YA section.

Marva is offering a free e-book to a lucky blog reader here today. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is read this post and leave a comment.

                            Love the tagline for the book--irresistible.

About Midnight Oil

MIDNIGHT OIL is Book 2 of the Witches of

Shipwrecked on a legendary island, how can a
witch rescue her boyfriend if she can’t even
phone home?

MuseItUp Buy Page:


Kat discovers that an evil forest spirit has
kidnapped her brand-new boyfriend. She sets out
with her brother, Rune, from her Arctic island
home on a mission to rescue the boy. 

Things go wrong from the start. Kat is thrown overboard
during a violent storm, while her brother and
his girlfriend are captured by a mutant island
tribe. The mutants hold the girlfriend hostage,
demanding that the teens recover the only thing
that can make the mutants human again–the
magical Midnight Oil.

Mustering every bit of her Wiccan magic, Kat
rises to the challenge. She invokes her magical
skills, learns to fly an ultralight, meets a
legendary sea serpent, rescues her boyfriend,
and helps a friendly air spirit win the battle
against her spiteful sibling. On top of it all,
she’s able to recover the Midnight Oil and help
the hapless mutants in the nick of time.

The Buddy Story: Rune and Ivansi

Butch and Sundance, Crosby and Hope, Han Solo
and Chewbacca. All buddy movies, despite being
in completely different genres. There’s
something primal about two guys getting
together and going on an adventure.

While Midnight Oil focuses mainly on Kat’s
journey, the relationship between Rune (Kat’s
half brother) and Ivansi (Kat’s grandfather) is
a close second. The two hardly know each other
at the beginning of the story, but learn about
each others’ strengths and weaknesses as they
are thrown together to find the elusive and
magical Midnight Oil.

The young warlock and the old warrior have a
difficult task to handle. They’re the pair who
have to talk to the Nenets gods to locate the
oil, then have a long and difficult journey to
get to it. Most of the trip is by sea, but when
the two hit land, they’re on foot. They’d
really like to find another mode of

Excerpt from Midnight Oil:

Midnight Oil
 The men continued to talk, and Rune listened,
picking up a word here and there. He wondered
if he could sneak a translation spell in with
nobody noticing. Rune decided against it since
it required speaking Old Runic and using a
summoning gesture. Big red letters would form
over his head, spelling out W-A-R-L-O-C-K. Best
to leave well enough alone and just let Ivansi
handle this.

Ivansi and the headman stood. Rune jumped up,
too. The two men walked away from the group
toward a small lean-to shed next to the house.
The man opened the swinging door, and Rune’s

eyes lit up. He quickly suppressed the glow and
grinned. The scooter! It had a logo on its
front end written in chrome italic lettering—

The scooter had a two-person seat. The front-
end consisted of a curved shield designed to
protect the rider’s legs, topped by a
headlight. On the inside of the knee shield, he
saw a couple of dials: speedometer and RPM. A
short windshield stuck up from the handlebars.
It wasn’t much different from the snowmobiles
Rune had a chance to ride with the trolls.
Wheels instead of skids, and it had a much
smaller engine than the snowmobiles. Rear view
mirrors stood up on both ends of the
handlebars. Rune could hardly wait to fire it

The two men bantered a couple of minutes. Rune
could recognize a bartering session in any
language. Ivansi took out his hunting knife
from its sheath and handed it to the man, who
inspected it closely. It was a beautiful knife,
with an etched blade and an elaborately carved
handle made from walrus tusk. The tusk was
yellowed with age, but the blade flashed in the
sunlight, clean and sharp.

The man nodded. Ivansi unbuckled his belt, slid
the sheath from it, and held it out to the man,
who grinned broadly as he inspected it. Then,
he set the knife on a shelf and dug into a
pouch tied on his belt. He handed a key to
Ivansi who passed it to Rune. “Can drive?”

“Oh, yeah! No problem.” Rune slid the key into
the ignition, grasped the handlebars, toed up
the kickstand, and walked it out of the shed.
The man followed, pointing to this or that
control. Rune didn’t know what he was saying
but got the idea. He looked it over, pulled on
the hand brakes to see if they moved smoothly.

The scooter proved to be in excellent
condition. And red! Rune thought it an omen
that the scooter came in ‘his’ color.
Ivansi gave thanks to the Vespa’s owner. Man
and boy mounted their wheeled steed. Rune
turned the key, and the little engine buzzed
like a mad wasp. He let out the hand clutch,
the scooter hopped a couple of times, and they
took off down the road. The purple haze ran
ahead of them, showing them the way to Finland.

                                          * * * *

Learn more about Marva and her work:


Book Trailer: v=tdfNTVeMS1s

Social Sites:
Twitter Handle: @Gurina

Other Books by Marva Dasef from MuseItUp:

Bad Spelling: Book 1 of the Witches of Galdorheim 

A klutzy witch, a shaman's curse, a quest to save her 
family. Can Kat find her magic in time?

Missing, Assumed Dead

Prejudice, murder, insanity, suicide: Every
small town has its secrets.

Thanks and Questions

Thanks for being with us today, Marva. I love buddy stories. If you have any questions for Marva, please post them below. And remember please to leave a comment or question below for a chance to win a free e-book from Marva.


  1. And I thought of the Lone Ranger and Tonto. lol.

    Everyone needs a sidekick.

    Great post, Marva.

    I have read all of your books. I'm hooked on this new series. I can't wait for the next one to come out.

  2. Thanks for having me on your blog, Anne. It's an honor.

  3. The honor's all mine Marva. Thanks so much for joining us on your blog tour. You write so successfully both for adults and children. What one piece of advice would you offer to a new writer hoping to break in to the children's fiction market?

  4. Annie: To answer your question (as if I knew anything):

    Do not write down to kids. They're far more sophisticated than you might think. If you're doing a picture book, then okay, keep it simple. Mid-grade and up can read anything an adult can, but do not bore them with long slow places. Forget arty, think action.

  5. I wasn't sure how to contact you privately. I love your blog and want to award you the Liebster award.
    You can check out the details on my blog at


  6. Carol, just so excited about this. How kind of you to think of me and put me in such talented company. I love your blogs--such great photos always--and wish you every success with Picky Eater, that Peter. What wonderful reviews your book is getting.
    Thanks so much for the award. Made my month and it's only just started. :-)


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