I am happy to have Danielle here to share her wonderful dog and her upcoming YA fantasy release from The Wild Rose Press, The New Apprentice, Book One of The Krane Chronicles, co-authored with her father.
Danielle: After 11 years of having a dog, I didn’t know how not to, and I didn’t really want to find out.
When I lost my boxer Molly in my sophomore year of college, I was lost. Despite college being a terrible time to take on the responsibility of a boxer puppy, renown for their high energy levels, I made the decision to love my Luna, or, depending on her mood, Lunatic. Born on Valentine’s Day, Luna is the craziest of her litter, and while my mother called dibs on her littermate Leo, I chose the only white boxer of the litter.
To anyone familiar with boxers, this might seem like a crazy idea. Boxers were initially German hunting dogs, which is something I find laughable as today they are lovers and not fighters. They have been selectively bred over the years for their smooshed snouts and playful personalities. White boxers make up about 25 percent of every litter of boxers, and are notorious for having health complications, including blindness and deafness. Because of this, no one really wants them. I have grown up with boxers, both brindles and another white boxer, and from day one I was ready to love this little fur baby and whatever challenges she presented.
Well, my little spitfire is in wonderful health, and the only issue with her hearing is that it’s extremely selective. Luna remains insane at one year old. She loves to run and combine fetch and tug-o-war into one game. She insists on bringing a toy on walks but will drop said toy to chase a leaf blowing in the wind. She’s a complete goof, spoiled rotten, and the biggest love. Her favorite way to sleep is curled up on me, and there’s no better way to start every day than when she crawls onto my chest to give me love. I remember the day I finally got to take her home, I picked her up and she wrapped her arms around me in a hug and refused to let go. She knew from the first moment that she was mine, and I was hers.
Oh, I am hers. Luna is the queen of my house, and she knows it. She has me trained to give her an ice cube every time I go into the freezer, and hogs both the couch and bed. She is best buddies with my sister’s 10-year-old black lab mix Toby. Is it easy to edit or do homework with a dog laying on my laptop? Nope. Does she care? Absolutely not. It’s hard to be mad when she’s so darn cute, and is it really possible to feel anything other than pure joy when you see a boxer baby bouncing down the hall to you?
There’s a reason boxers are said to be one of the best family dogs there are. They’re sweet but sassy, protective but never vicious. Their temperament makes them the perfect best friends for small children and adults alike.
Luna would have a ball playing with all the animals in Barnabus Krane’s bookstore in The New Apprentice, the first book of The Krane Chronicles that I am co-authoring with my father Vincent Morrone.
The New Apprentice:
For fourteen years, Z has wondered where she came from, why strange things occur around her, and what happened to her family. When she runs into an old bookstore to hide from a horde of school bullies, she starts to find the answers with the cantankerous owner, Barnabus Krane.
Barnabus becomes her guardian, her magical instructor, and the family she’s never had. He teaches her how to bring out the magic from within her ‘Ka’ and about the mystical world she never knew existed. But Barnabus also hides secrets. His connection to her past, his hunt for the warlock Blackwell, and the darkness that threatens to consume them all.
The hardest lesson for Z to learn is to trust in her bond with Barnabus and believe that their relationship goes beyond family. For he’s not just another magician. He is the Grand Master Sorcerer, and Z is the New Apprentice.
Barnabus shot me a grin. “What do you think?”
“I’m gonna learn how to do that?”
“And more.” He turned to face me. “So, Parthenia Zogopoulos.” He ignored my wince at his use of my full name. “I would like to make you my apprentice.” He held up a hand to hold off my reaction. “The bond between a teacher and apprentice is extraordinarily special. It’s very strong and intimate in a way you’ve never experienced before. The two become family. You have to be sure you’re ready to make that commitment.”
I gave him an amused look and ignored my pounding heart. “Is this a marriage or an offer to teach me?”
Barnabus scowled. “I’m serious. Will you let me use my magic to grow yours, teach you my secrets, and guide you on your journey?”
I gulped. This was real, this offer, not like all the empty promises I’d been dished out over the years at each new temporary home. This was so much more. I tried to find the words to match it, but I had nothing.
Finally, I managed one word. “Yes.”
Barnabus nodded and held up his right hand, then placed his index and middle finger on my temple. I felt a warm sensation flood through me, racing through my body and making my veins tingle. I felt tears come to my eyes as it washed over me. It felt like something I had never had before.
It was love. Family. For the first time, I was home.
Danielle Morrone insists that the minute and a half time difference between her and her twin sister doesn’t count. She is currently a full time college student studying psychology and creative writing. Danielle has been writing for most of her childhood, and began working on The Krane Chronicles with her father at age fifteen. When not lost in the musings of her own creations, you can find her acting as her boxer puppy’s personal chew toy or training in capoeira. Life might be hectic, but not so much that there’s no time to keep in touch with loyal readers. Drop a question or comment for Danielle at firstname.lastname@example.org any time. She’s in college. She’s awake to answer.
Born and raised in Brooklyn NY, Vincent Morrone now resides in Upstate NY with his wife. (Although he can still speak fluent Brooklynese.) His twin daughters remain not only his biggest fans, but usually are the first to read all of his work. Their home is run and operated for the comfort and convenience of their dogs.
Vincent has been writing fiction, poetry and song lyrics for as long as he can remember, most of which involve magical misfits, paranormal prodigies and even on occasion superheroes and their sidekicks.
As they say in Brooklyn: Yo, you got something to say to Vincent? Check out http://vincentmorrone.com/ where you can learn about Vincent and leave him a comment.
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