Summer of Series: A.C. Gaughen Interview & Giveaway!

I first read SCARLET back when it was a stand-alone, so for it to be a crazy successful trilogy with the best ending ever makes me really happy. I am so excited to welcome A.C. Gaughen to my blog today!

Lion Heart
third in the Scarlet series
Published May 19, 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
Add to Goodreads
The eagerly-awaited conclusion to the Scarlet trilogy delivers another action-packed and romance-filled adventure.

Scarlet has captured the hearts of readers as well as the heart of Robin Hood, and after ceaseless obstacles and countless threats, readers will finally find out the fate of the Lady Thief.

Imprisoned by Prince John for months, Scarlet finds herself a long way from Nottinghamshire. After a daring escape from the Prince's clutches, she learns that King Richard’s life is in jeopardy, and Eleanor of Aquitaine demands a service Scarlet can’t refuse: spy for her and help bring Richard home safe. But fate—and her heart—won’t allow her to stay away from Nottinghamshire for long, and together, Scarlet and Rob must stop Prince John from going through with his dark plans for England. They can not rest until he’s stopped, but will their love be enough to save them once and for all?
Describe the Scarlet trilogy in a tweet! 140 characters or less. No cheating or the Twitter Gods are going to get you.
Ha!  How's this: "Girl with knives takes down the medieval patriarchy in just three novels.  Also, Robin Hood."
(Lili: If I wasn't already in love with this series, then you would have just succeeded in making me fall in love with it!)

What has been your favorite part of writing this trilogy?
UGH! One favorite?  It's amazing how many people have shared their love/tears/ragefire/feels with me over the books--that's just so totally beautiful and vulnerable and kind.  But I guess I'm really still not over the fact that this is what I wanted to do when I was seven, and by the time I got my big girl shoes, I was able to do it professionally. That's...still kind of amazing.

I know Scarlet initially released as a stand-alone and it was so well-loved it turned into a trilogy. Can you describe what that process was like? How did you choose to expand upon the story?
So, sort of an insider secret, it was always my intention to have the story be a trilogy. My publisher wanted to be more cautious, so they purchased Scarlet as a standalone and then said we'd talk after the book came out. The funny thing was, I thought I was totally prepared to write a trilogy and I knew where the story was going and I was READY.  But that was such hubris--writing is a crazy beast and when you think you know where the story "has" to go, it tacks and runs down a different path.  So it was a very unexpected, humbling journey--a lot of work and a lot of joy.  I had no idea how hard it would be to say goodbye!

Now that this amazing trilogy is done, can you share any hints about your future works?
*steeples fingers* well yeeeessss...Just a little bit!  My next series is going to start in 2017 and the series is currently titled "Elementae" and the first book is TERRA--the first book centers on Shalia, a young girl that discovers she has the ability to control the earth on the same day she marries Calix, a young king that hunted the Elemental powers to extinction.  The series as a whole will introduce women with other elemental powers, and I'm pretty psyched about it!!  I'm a hardcore fantasy fan, and this genre was where I started all my scribblings as a kid--in fact, this world and Shalia's character in particular is something I've been thinking about since I was about 14!

What inspired you to write Scarlet initially? It is such a great re-imagining and the imagination behind it is crazy amazing!
A lot of different things--partially, totally missing my time in Scotland (I went to school there and lived there for a while) and partially my love of Robin Hood--and my frustration with the typical portrayal of Maid Marian, and how she ends up a little lame.  Will Scarlet's character is always shadowy, and angsty, and a little off-screen, and it suddenly struck me that I might know why that was.
(Lili: OMG YES!)

What is the most interesting thing you have Googled in the name of research?
God, I've been getting this a lot lately, and I have to say I should probably change my answer to avoid being on MORE watchlists...but yes, it always has to do with a) the mechanics of medieval torture (did you know more people died from INFECTION than the torture itself?  And it was almost impossible to recover from being tortured because of that?) (also, please play out the philosophical ramifications of that--that literally, when a society was reduced to torturing for information, no one could recover....just saying....)

Ahem.  b) also lots of stabbing questions--where can I stab someone that they will bleed out slowly?  Where can i stab someone and they will not die?


BUT, c) probably the most interesting thing for my geeky heart was looking up some modern scholarly articles about King John's reign and rise to power, and how despite his perception, he might actually have been a really effective King.

What is one series you would recommend to readers?
ALL OF THEM THATS MEAN AND HARD.  I think the series that has been my biggest love in the past few years is the Grisha Trilogy, but I'm just going to assume that everyone already knows how awesome that is.  One of my all-time favorites might be the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz.  Or any of Ally Carter's series....or Katherine Longshore's Royal Circle Series (seriously amazing YA historical fiction).

Thor, Iron Man, or Captain America? GO!
I mean, we're talking about series, so let's just say Thor is for Tuesday, Iron Man is for Wednesday, and Captain America...welll he might take a few more days.  And that is definitely a series worth--ahem--rereading.

(Lili: And here I was thinking it was impossible to love A.C. Gaughen even more!)


Annie being the awesomest of awesome is providing a signed copy of LION HEART to one winner.

All entrants must be 13 years or older and this giveaway is open to the US only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

It is not too late to join the fun as we celebrate our favorite series and welcome new ones! Sign up for Summer of Series and knock down that TBR! 

And, of course, be sure to stop by Danielle's blog!


  1. I'm so glad Scarlet was able to be a trilogy, because we would have missed out on a TON of swoon otherwise!
    And, eeeep, her next series sounds amazing! I can't wait. :)

  2. I like the way you think!!!! Avenger trilogy heheh. Scarlet was amazing, I was so happy when the sequels were announced. It's such a wonderful bunch of characters and I love the historical feel mixed with the Robin Hood legend. So excited for the new series! It sounds great :)

  3. Love this series and this interview. AC seems so cool! Can't wait to read her next project.

    Emily @ Follow the Yellow Book Road

  4. This is great! Googling torture. That is so funny. Hope nobody you know gets tortured, and they come looking for you.

  5. I have to read this series!

  6. I loved hearing about the new series she is working on. Sounds great!

  7. I am just happy that the publisher's caution was unsubstantiated and the trilogy went forward!