I am so excited to be able to help Pam Halter celebrate the release of her debut novel, Fairyeater. Today, she gives us a glimpse of what fairies like to eat. So without further ado, please welcome, Pam Halter!
The Food in Fairyeater
The sun shone warm on the village, and Akeela pushed thoughts about running away and her friends’ strange behavior to the back of her mind. She enjoyed squirrel and bread stuffed mushrooms, grilled onions and goat cheese, creamed apples, and flat bread with rich, herbed butter.
Ah, food in stories. We don’t have enough of that in books for me. I love cooking and I love eating, especially when friends and family are around the table.
What started my love for food in stories were the books in the Redwall series by Brian Jacques. Man, those mice ate GOOD! I always wished I could be there, enjoying their cakes and raspberry cordial.
Creating recipes and cooking and feeding people are a normal part of my life, so it was only natural that I add that aspect in my writing. It’s been fun figuring out what kinds of food the people in Fedestia would eat. It depended on what part of the country they lived, if they were hunters, farmers, or when peddlers came.
It also depended on which character I was writing. The witch, Tzmet, eats a bit differently than Akeela and the people of Broem.
Here’s something that isn’t too nasty.
Tzmet turned and pointed to her canopy bed. “Lay it down carefully, you miserable creature. And get me something to eat. A cheese and mushroom omelet with goat’s liver. Make sure the liver is properly coated with crushed hicata pepper. I’m in a spicy mood today.”
But Tzmet’s choice wasn’t always so palatable. She eats fried tarantula, muskrat, goat’s liver, and grilled night crawlers. She keeps a raven for eggs. And she enjoys hicata peppers (my version of chili peppers). I had fun in one scene where Brimridge (a boggart servant) comes up with a sandwich, which I called a “hand meal”.
“Here, my lady, allow me to prepare your meal.” Without waiting for an answer, Brimridge sliced the bread and cheese. He poured some oil on the bread and layered the cheese, meat and sage leaves on it. Then he topped it with another slice of oiled bread, cut it in half and set it on the plate.
“What am I supposed to do with this, fool?” Tzmet wrinkled her nose as she inspected the strange thing before her.
Brimridge smiled as he prepared another for himself. “We call it a hand-meal. You pick it up and eat it all together. Watch me.” And saying so, he sat, picked up the hand-meal and took a bite.
“That is vulgar.” But Tzmet was too hungry to get up and fix anything else, so she picked up the hand-meal, sniffed it and took a small bite. Sun, moon and stars, the thing was actually good. She took another bite and oil ran down her chin.
The Kazmura (cave people) eat fish caught from underground lakes, which are boiled in underground hot springs and wrapped in the leaves of lake plants.
The Adacians (forest people) are pescatarian, eating vegetables, fruit, nuts, and fish.
The dwarves are hunters and eat similar foods to the people in the village of Broem, with one exception. Since they mine salt, they use it in various ways in their cooking.
Food in stories. For me, it enhances the adventure, making it more real. We’re told to write with all our senses. Food brings another level to the story that is enjoyable and fun.
Thank you so much, Pam!
About The Book
All fifteen-year-old Akeela has ever wanted is an ordinary family who will love her. But the only mother she has ever known is the old hag, Krezma, who berates her night and day. Why did the old woman even take her in?
But Krezma knows her charge is no ordinary child. She can see the auras surrounding living things and can communicate with fairies. And the birthmark on her palm reveals a secret Krezma must hold close for the child’s safety.
A secret that the witch, Tzmet, hunts for night and day, drying and eating fairies for the power they contain. When Akeela discovers her fate lies in being the next Fairy Guardian, all hope for an ordinary life dissipates like the dreams they were. She must protect the fairies from the witch–and an even darker power that threatens them all.
Akeela is unwillingly thrust into an adventure that will not end until she decides to accept her fate and give up on her dream.
Maybe even her life.
If you’d like more information about Fairyeater and see the other stops on the tour, click here!
Have a great rest of the week!