I love a good love story as much as the next girl, which is why Heirs of War isn’t short on what fandoms refer to as “ships”. It isn’t enough to categorize as a romance, but it does play a role. Why? Because I think love plays a vital role in all of our lives. I know it does in mine. It makes sense to me for my characters to fall in and out of love, even with a war waging around them and their own fair share of problems stacking up against them. That’s what people do every day, and it’s a very exhilarating part of life.

Can you tell what a hopeless romantic I am? =)

The trick has been to find a way to balance love in these books. With five main characters and lots of other major characters, it has been a great challenge for me. As a fangirl, I’m eager to see these stories unfold. I want to see Ariana and Alec together. But as a writer, I can see how it is not going to be easy for them at all. The pacing of their story together changes throughout the series. Sometimes it is really fast because they are in love and passion can get the best of them. Other times, it slows down, because of the obstacles thrown in between them.

That’s really been the most important part of writing the love stories in the Heirs of War series: Pacing. Each character is going to move at their own pace, and that’s something I’ve had to realize. It’s the reason why I’ve decided that I’ll introduce the love interest for one of the girls in particular, but we’ll never see it come to fruition. They might never even kiss. Why? Because this character wouldn’t move that fast. She would fall slowly, and it would probably take years for her to see what is right in front of her face.

I think it’s important for me to have love and romance, but not to let it take center stage. I think Terry Goodkind and Rachel O’Laughlin both did a fabulous job with that in their fantasy series. There is still a war that they have to face, customs that they have to get used to, and politics that they have to deal with. And most importantly, the girls have to learn how to work with each other and get to know the families they’ve just met–include one another. So even though the inner fangirl wants to write about Alec and Ariana snuggling, or Isauria and Bianca’s shared moments and secret kisses, I have to pace those moments and fit them in as the story calls for it. Balance in all things. =)


The NA fantasy series Heirs of War has taken Wattpad by storm with over one million reads, and the second installment has arrived. Catch up on Heirs of War (#1) for just 99 cents now!

Heirs of War #1:

When seventeen year-old Zelene finds herself thrust into a world of magic and prophecy, she discovers fighting destiny might not be the toughest battle she has to face. Now she must join with three other girls, complete strangers linked only by blood relation, to fight a war they know nothing of and rescue the twin sister she’s never met.

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The adventure continues with Heirs of War, Crown of Flames

Heirs of War, Crown of Flames
Heirs of War #2
Mara Valderran
Cover Art by Gretchen Byers

Weeks have passed since Ariana and Alec escaped from Kellen’s dungeon, but danger isn’t far behind them. The guilt of his past weighs heavily on Alec’s shoulders, and his secrets only push Ariana further away. As they travel through unknown lands and encounter multiple threats, their biggest challenge might be trusting one another.

The world appears to be going on regardless of the risks Ariana faces. The Duillaine insist that they are doing everything they can to find Ariana, but their actions betray that claim. Despite the danger and the war closing in around them, all of Anscombe seems to be more interested in the upcoming Imbolc festival and Terrena’s betrothal than rescuing Ariana.

Well…not everyone.

Tired of waiting for the Duillaine to help her twin, Zelene starts plotting on her own and finds a surprising ally in Rhaya, even as the Cynewards prepare to make a move of their own. But Zelene’s plans go awry when she finds herself with a new ability, a mysterious new friend, and more enemies within the walls of Anscombe than she thought.

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Mara Valderran is an author of young adult and new adult books, but she’s more than just a madwoman with a writing box. She is an avid reader and fan of all things sci-fi and fantasy. She loves roller skating and movies, though typically not together. She lives in Las Vegas with her husband and demanding cat. She hopes to one day meet Daniel Jackson from SG1, or at least the actor who played him. When she’s not writing, you can find her reading, playing video games, or counting down the days until DragonCon.

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Want to follow this blog tour? Check out the calendar below!

Monday 10/13
Krystal Wade Margo Bond Collins Here is What I Read Book Blog
Vicki Trask Jessa Russo Lorraine Harvey
Priya Kanaparti Nerd Girl Official Terry’s Book Addiction
Ali Dean Shooting Star Book Reviews
Tuesday 10/14 Wednesday 10/15 Thursday 10/16
Ali Dean (Review) Jan Farnworth (Review) James Wymore (Guest Post)
Terry’s Book Addiction (Review) Jamie Ayres (Promo)
Friday 10/17 Saturday 10/19 Monday 10/20
Emma Adams (Interview) Laveda Kasch (Excerpt #1) Eliza Tilton (Excerpt #2)
Elsie Elmore (Interview) Jessa Russo (Excerpt #3)
Cait Spivey (Guest Post) Shooting Star Book Reviews (Excerpt #4)
Here is What I Read (Interview)
Tuesday 10/21 Wednesday 10/22 Thursday 10/23
Michael Panush (Review) Book Lover Blog (Review) Ayden Morgen (Guest Post)
Friday 10/24 Monday 10/27 Tuesday 10/28
K. L. Schwengel (Guest Post) Katie Teller (Interview) Priya Kanaparti (Guest Post)
Charity Bradford (Excerpt #5) Sharon Bayliss (Review)
Vicki Trask (Review)
Sarah Anderson (Interview)

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