Shameez Patel Papathanasiou is here to talk about her the first in her fantasy series, The Last Feather

Author Name: Shameez Patel Papathanasiou

Book Title: The Last Feather (The First Book in the Selene Trilogy)

Book Genre: Fantasy

Release Date: 19 July 2022

Publisher: Flame Tree Press

Welcome, Shameez! Please describe The Last Feather.

A sword-and-sorcery hidden world fantasy where a dangerous curse is spreading across a magical realm, ruled by powerful and immortal beings. Cassia Khan needs to help her best friend resist the curse and get back to her family before she’s trapped in his realm forever. 

What sparked the idea for this book?

A different version of this book was born during NaNoWriMo many years ago during a pantsing session. This version of the book came from the need to escape during the pandemic. 

How long did it take for you to write it? Did you need to do any research?

Writing the first draft goes quickly. Once I have the idea, I can’t stop thinking about it until the story is written, which is why NaNoWriMo works very well for me. Editing on the other hand… Well, that took a few months and plenty of revisions to get it to where I needed it to be. 

What drew you to the fantasy genre?

The simple answer is that I love magic. I love that it breaks all the rules and creates its own. I love that it allows for possibilities far beyond anything we can experience. Magic aside, I enjoy that the genre generally allows for good to defeat evil and that always leaves me feeling hopeful. 

What’s your favorite part about writing/being an author? What do you find challenging?

I love telling stories. Writing the first draft is undoubtedly one of the most enjoyable experiences for me. Edits and revisions are far more challenging, but with each revision it is rather rewarding to feel the story getting even better when I had already thought it was as good as it was going to get. 

If you were speaking to someone who hasn’t read your writing before, why should they want to read The Last Feather?

While there are amazing fantasy novels out there, The Last Feather offers diverse representation and fills the gap in fantasy that I rarely come across. An easy epic fantasy written in a contemporary style. What would you be like if you were transported into a world of magic and monsters? 

What about the writing/editing/publishing process has been the most surprising to you so far?

The time it takes! I had no idea it took such a long time to get published and as someone who enjoys instant gratification, it’s been torture. That being said, having been through the processes, I understand the care that goes into each step and I wouldn’t have it any other way. 

Any words of wisdom you give your pre-published writer self (or to a new writer)?

Keep dreaming. Your dreams turn into stories and your stories turn into novels which will inspire readers’ dreams and so the process continues in the best of ways. 

Are you working on a new project? Please tell us about it.

Book 2 in the Selene Trilogy and I can’t give you anything without spoiling The Last Feather. But don’t fret, the adventures of Cass and Luke hasn’t ended yet. 

Where can readers find you (website, blog, social media, etc.)? Feel free to include any upcoming, live/online events, workshops, too!

I’m easy to find. @shameezwrites on twitter and IG, or sign up to my newsletter for some interesting stories about my cats and kid, www.shameezwrites.com

Thank you, Shameez! The Last Feather is out NOW.

South African born, debut author brings a threat-and-danger, hidden-world fantasy with touches of Suzanne Collins which fans of VE Schwab or Sarah J Maas will love.


Twenty-two-year-old Cassia’s sister is dying, and she doesn’t know why. Cassia wakes up in another realm to find her missing best friend, Lucas, who knows how to save her sister.

Lucas is part of a community of Reborns, people who were born on earth and after death, were reborn in this realm with magical abilities. The original beings of the realm, the Firsts, rule over them.

To keep the Reborn numbers manageable, the king of the Firsts releases a curse to cull them. Cassia needs to break the curse before her time runs out and she is trapped there forever.

BIO:

Shameez Patel Papathanasiou was born and raised in Cape Town, South Africa. She lives there with her husband, child and two cats named Turbo and Charger. During the day she juggles her time between singing Baby Shark to her daughter and working as a civil engineer where she designs roads and analyses traffic, but at night she writes fantasy worlds with magic, monsters and someone to fall in love with.

She considers herself a professional binge-watcher and fangirl. Don’t be surprised to bump into her dressed as a Hobbit or Lady Loki. Should you need anything from her, offer a choc-chip cookie and her heart is yours forever.

Shameez fell in love with fiction, especially fantasy fiction at a young age. Her parents fondly recall receiving her first handwritten story before the age of ten, titled The Treasures of Zombie Island, which surprisingly featured no zombies at all. She has been writing ever since.

Her fantasy novel, The Last Feather is set to be published in 2022 by Flame Tree Press – it, at the very least, features a feather.