Join Leigh Ann Edwards on a European Vacation!

I am really pleased to be featured on Tule’s blog today. I’m also very excited for the release of“A Witch’s Life”, book five in The Irish Witch Series. I’ve heard readers are impatiently awaiting what is in store for Alainn and Killian since the cliff-hangar ending of book four shocked even those who have followed the books since the beginning. I’m thrilled there are so many invested in my characters and their powerful love story, and while I promise there will be answers soon, in keeping with the series, there are likely to be more mysteries arise as well.

My husband and I have recently returned from a trip to the UK and Ireland. He is originally from a small city near Manchester England and still has family there. Since he hadn’t celebrated Christmas with them for eleven years, I am happy we were able to be there in December.

It was lovely to observe every pub, restaurant and historical site elaborately decorated for Christmas. I was aware the tradition of exchanging Christmas cards originated in England, but I had no idea the custom widely continues. Every home proudly displayed the cards they received. It made me decide to go back to sending more cards this year.

Our first stop was York England, a fascinating ancient city founded by the Romans. It claims some of the original cobblestones, and The Shambles, a fourteenth century street with timber-framed buildings that overhang. But the main reason for choosing York, was to see York Minster Cathedral, one of the largest in Northern Europe. It is enormous, and amazingly beautiful and I doubt mere words could actually do it justice.

Although we’d been to Scotland before as we were married there, we’d never been to the capital city. Edinburgh with it’s cobblestone streets, massive sand-stone buildings and gothic-styled monuments, as well as the numerous kilt, tartan and woolen-mill shops was wonderful to experience. The caramel shortbread, and sticky-toffee pudding were delightful, too.

In touring Edinburgh Castle, we saw the military museum, Scotland’s crown jewels and the Stone of Destiny. Holyrood House Palace was intriguing as it is the exact location where Mary Queen of Scots once lived.

Mary King’s Close, a street located entirely beneath The Royal Mile where people resided back in the seventeenth century, was undeniably eerie.

The renowned Edinburgh Christmas market was absolutely massive with numerous booths. I enjoyed browsing and resting my tired feet by stopping to taste the delicious mulled wine.

However, in my opinion, I’ve saved the best for last, because as always, Ireland was, is, and ever will be my absolute favorite place to travel. No matter how many times I visit that lovely country, it simply feels like I’ve come home. Between the moderate climate, the friendly people with their charming accents, the appealing Irish pubs, and being near the sea with an abundance of fresh seafood, Ireland seems to touch my heart and resonate within my soul. In learning the results of a recent DNA kit test, I was not surprised to discover I am thirty-two percent Irish.

Although we only had a few days in Ireland we made the most of our time. We went to Dublin again, a wonderful, bustling city with lots to offer. We toured Dublin Castle and the remains of the Viking settlement on the site.

Re-visiting the small town of Blarney, home of Blarney Castle and the Blarney stone was a must. I didn’t kiss the stone, but I did manage to walk up the many gradually narrowing stone steps all the way to the top. The castle and its enchanted steps, magical gardens, and moss covered trees were largely inspirational to my series and truly how I envisioned the fairy realm in my books.

Friends were kind enough to take us to Kinsale, a remarkably lovely, quaint medieval fishing village where I would be completely content to find a small cottage and stay forever, but only if I could take my family, friends and my cats with me.

It was an amazing trip, but equally nice to come home as I missed my daughters and grandchildren a lot in the month we were away.

Finally, in closing, I am happy to say books five, six and seven in The Irish Witch Series are being released within eight weeks, therefore fans of the series won’t have much longer to wait to discover many of the unanswered questions and longtime mysteries that have been building since book one. I hope you will enjoy the continued adventures of Alainn and Killian. I’d be genuinely happy to hear from you and get feedback on the books and the series. Contact me at leighannedwards.com

Magical wishes,

Leigh Ann Edwards

 

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