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The Unicorn Hunter ~ Review with Author Interview

The Unicorn Hunter
By Rachel Kirkaldie

Princess Jessalyn's betrothal is about to be the talk of the Kingdom of Sharadel, but not for the reasons she wants it to be. But a little betrothal mishap is about to be the least of her worries when she is kidnapped from the grounds of her very home.

But far more than a kidnapping of a princess is working its evil through the lands. And Jessalyn is but one pawn within the greater scheme that could topple more than one kingdom. But until she sees past her own vanities she may not be able to see the greater danger that threatens everything she has ever known.

Caught up in this web that has engulfed is Erik, a young man who has allowed himself to be shaped by life's circumstances and tricked into the role he now finds himself in. And Erik is determined to stop the trickster whom he allowed to influence him. But his quest could cost him his life.

The Unicorn Hunter will take the reader into a world where legends are coming to life and where what is known isn't what is. And Princess Jessalyn, with the help of a young knight and a thief, is about to discover that she is more than what she appears and true worth is not to be found in appearance and rank but rather what resides within.

At 183 pages this book is perfect for a weekend read. For upcoming school book reports in the fantasy/adventure genre keep this one in mind - you'll enjoy the assignment. With a cast of characters with distinct and powerful personalities you know there will be a clash or two as they work towards their goals which may or may not coincide.

I was provided a review copy of this book by the publisher with no expectations of a positive review. All expressed opinions are my own.  

About the Book:
"Our next scheme," he replied, shaking his head,
"we're going to kidnap the princess."

Princess Jessalyn has a perfect life all lined up for her: she is the most beautiful princess in the realm and is about to marry the soon-to-be-king of Gontir. But all her plans are shattered when she's kidnapped by a murderous unicorn hunter in a plot to destroy Gontir.Dark and mysterious things begin happening, and Jessalyn may be the only one who can save the realm. Faced with the realization that everything she once cherished is not what she thought was, Jessalyn must decide if the life she's always wanted is worth the price of her heart.

About the Author:
Rachel Kirkaldie earned a BA in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing from BYU-Idaho in 2002. While she was there, she worked as a writing assistant in the student writing center, published poetry in the school literary magazine The Outlet, and attended multiple conferences and workshops. More recently she won “Publisher’s Choice” for best Christmas story in a contest. Although a full-time mother and a part-time state employee, she still finds time to dedicate to her writing, making it the best she possibly can.

Find her online at

Author Interview:

1) What inspired your creation of Princess Jessalyn? 

I created Princess Jessalyn years ago when I was still in high school, back when all I wanted was to be beautiful and I was obsessed with all things princess. I like to think I've gained a little more depth since then, and Jessalyn has, too. 

2) Where did the "smelly fishing kingdom" come from? I've been to a few areas over the years and this description instantly took me to them. 

Sharadel came straight from my brain. It wasn't based on any specific place, at least not that I can recall. I would like to visit it, though, despite the smell of fish. 

3) Are you planning a sequel or is this a stand-alone book? 

Oh, yes, there will be a sequel! The Unicorn Hunter is part of a trilogy. The original manuscript was actually a cliffhanger, and my publisher asked me to change it so the book could stand by itself, just in case we weren't able to publish the next two books. I think the stand-alone ending is better, but I had to cut a lot out and move it to the next book. 

Good, I like series - that way I don't have to abandon a character that I really or a world that I'm just starting to explore! 

4) When you write do you have a place that you go for inspiration or do you just start writing when something comes to you? 

I used to write just when I "felt like it," those moments when I'm full of inspiration and I just have to get it out into words. But inspiration can be elusive, and I didn't want to take ten years to write one novel. So I had to push myself to write even when I wasn't feeling particularly inspired. It can be painfully hard but it gets easier over time, kind of like exercising a muscle. When I write I have to have zero distractions: no music, no TV, and definitely no kids climbing all over me. So most nights my husband would find me in our closet, typing away. :)

5) Do you have a favorite genre or author that is your go to of choice? If so what or who is it? 

I love YA fiction; when I hit the library I go straight to the Teen section. 

Excellent source for reading material by the way.  And YA fiction has some really excellent reading available.

Thanks for taking the time out your busy schedule Rachel for this short interview - I'm looking forward to what comes next for Princess Jessalyn and the Kingdoms of Sharadel and Gontir.

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~ Blooming with Books