January 4, 2016

A Truthwitch Affair: On Threadsisters & Friendship (+ Giveaway)

Welcome, friends, to an event that I've been excited about since it was first conceived last year - A Truthwitch Affair! All week long, Rachel of Hello Chelly & I will be celebrating the release of Truthwitch, the first novel in a new fantasy series from Susan Dennard. We're both huge Susan fans, having first fallen in love with her writing when we read her debut series, Something Strange and Deadly (see proof here & here). And while we'll always have a soft spot for the books that introduced us to her (and for Eleanor and Daniel), we are completely head-over-heels in love with Truthwitch

Truthwitch is an incredible read. It's fast-paced,with plenty of action and emotion and complications to keep readers hooked from start to finish. The world-building is incredible, and the story is awesome. But one of the key elements at the heart of this story is the friendship between Safi & Iseult. The relationship these two Threadsisters share is constructed of equal parts respect and devotion, and the strength of that connection between two such fierce, flawed women really struck a chord with us. So, it felt right to kick off today's event by talking about friendships. (Don't forget to check out Rachel's post too!)

Rachel & I have been best friends for about three years now. I often tell her that I can't imagine what my life was like before we were friends, and it's the truth. I hardly remember a time where we didn't communicate in at least one way every single day, whether it's through our daily chat, text or tweets. I can't even remember a time when I didn't turn to her for companionship, for opinions, for advice, for encouragement, for comfort, for inspiration. She's one of the constants in my life, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Three years might not seem like a long time (and it really isn't), but time doesn't matter when you've forged a connection that's strong and true. I'm grateful every single day for the circumstances that brought the two of us together. I'm grateful we live in such close proximity to each other, which makes it easy to hang out as much as we want to. I'm also grateful for the way she just gets it, our mind meld moments, the collaborations, and all our adventures past, present and future. 

There's not a doubt in my mind that Rachel is my Threadsister. Our bond just feels that strong, even though not all that much time has passed since we first were acquainted. But our relationship is much like the one Safi and Iseult share. They have an undeniable connection. They find themselves involved in various shenanigans, though the outcome isn't always guaranteed to be good. (We get up to a lot of fun things in real life and on our blogs, though there are certain stressful factors that often pop up.) They work together as a team, particularly because they have complementary skills. (That's generally why our collaborations are always so easy, and why we do events so often.) They value each other's presence, for security, comfort and guidance. (Rachel is my go-to girl whenever anything major happens in my life, good or bad.) They have plans together for the future. (We have a ton of these too, and not just for our blogs.) They always have each other's backs, and would do just about anything to make sure the other is okay. (I really would for Rachel. She knows I love her.) 

The way Susan chose to write this relationship between two powerful, capable women is wonderful. It really presents an ideal friendship, which isn't perfect but is certainly real. These women are deeply devoted to one another, and invested in making sure that the other's well-being is cared for. But they are also only human, and allowed to make mistakes, to learn, to grow. The mutual respect and understanding that they show one another, in good times and in bad times, is something to be admired indeed. It's why their friendship completely worked for me - neither character was in stasis, as they were both constantly changing with their circumstances. The only thing that never changed? Their utter devotion to one another. 

As an adult, I see the wisdom in letting your friends grow independently while still nurturing the roots that bind you together. It's a delicate balance, and one that I'm still learning to maintain, but there's no doubt that this is the secret to true, lasting friendships. When I started thinking about the growing pains all friendships go through (especially in adolescence), I was immediately drawn to one of my all-time favorite films about friendship: Now & Then. In case you've never seen it, the film is about four female best friends who are reunited in their hometown, and together reminisce about a pivotal summer in their childhood. Simple enough plot, yes, but the nuances of their experiences really strike a chord. They learn that they are indeed capable of being there for one another in any circumstances, but they also come to realize that they are allowed to grow separately as well. It's one of the most honest depictions of friendship I've ever seen, which is probably why I find myself drawn to it time and again.

Basically, the moral of this story is that once you find a good friend, don't ever let them go - and don't take them for granted either. Allow yourself and your friend to keep on growing as life goes on. And if you're lucky enough to find someone who could be your Threadsister (or Threadbrother) in real life, well, you better make damn sure to do what it takes to help that friendship grow stronger every day (though there's no doubt in my mind that it'll be basic instinct to do so). 

We're excited to be able to host another giveaway for our readers during this week-long affair. We're giving away one signed copy of Truthwitch to a lucky winner! This giveaway is INTERNATIONAL, open until 1/8. All you have to do is entire via the Rafflecopter form below:


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