LOKI: WHERE MISCHIEF LIES by Mackenzi Lee: Insightand a behind-the-scenes look into the brand-new release!

Love fairy tales and mythology?
Fans of mermaids, dragons, unicorns, and other mythical creatures?
Enjoy when a beloved classic tale is retold?
A Twist in the Tail Thursdays features all this and more!

Disney Hyperion, Marvel, and author Mackenzi Lee (THE GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE) have teamed up to bring together three new novels that will breathe new life into various characters from the Marvel Universe. The author is on tour at the moment for the first book, revolving around fan-favorite character Loki, right now, and I was lucky enough to catch the tour this week! LOKI: WHERE MISCHIEF LIES came out on Tuesday, and it brings yet another new twist to Loki, taking place in Victorian England and exploring the teenage Loki's youth.

I figured that the book would be a great addition for this week's A Twist in the Tail feature, since I'm still hyped from the event and Thor was one of the first Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies I fell in love with, largely due to its strong roots in Norse mythology. While I enjoy watching the MCU and have seen just about all of the movies at this point, there are only a few that I own: The Thor movies, the Captain America movies, the Avengers movies, Black Panther, and Captain Marvel. The others I may watch when they're on TV, but I didn't love them enough to own them. Loki has always been such an intriguing character, because he brings that sense of mischief to the story and makes viewers question if he's good or bad. He's aligned himself on both sides of the war, but has a better heart than one may initially think!

Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to attend the Book Expo of America and go to the BEA Dinner hosted by Disney Hyperion. This was my second year in attendance, and both years, it was an ultra swanky affair! The tables are always super-fancy and the room is decorated gorgeously with stylized posters of the attending authors. Each author sits at a table during the event and stands up for a presentation when their time comes, and each attendee gets a dinner menu that has an image of the book cover featuring their table author on the front. I was lucky enough to sit with Mackenzi Lee at my table, and our conversation really put the book on my radar. I hadn't heard of it before BEA, but had a fantasist conversation with her and her Marvel publicist. (Plus, we also talked all things Broadway, and had a half-discussion about Hadestown because Mackenzi had just seen it and I was seeing it the following night!)

Mackenzi Lee giving her presentation at the 2019 BEA Disney Dinner!

The drink of the evening at the 2019 BEA Disney Dinner!

The table set-up at the 2019 BEA Disney Dinner!
You can see my menu for the evening on the left with the beautiful LOKI
cover on its front!

Mmm, delicious food at the 2019 BEA Disney Dinner!

At the bookstore tour stop this week, Mackenzi Lee was in conversation with New York Times Best Selling Author Claire Legrand (FURYBORN, WINTERSPELL). I always adore seeing Claire at events; she's local, so I'm lucky to see her frequently. She is an amazing human being, and her books are fantastic! I'd forgotten that she was going to be present, and seeing her was the nicest of surprises.

The chat fluctuated from talk about former fanfic writing (Mackenzi was very into Star Wars, especially the original prequel trilogy that she grew up with and loved) to the way she was asked to become part of the Marvel family to whether Loki or FURYBORN's Rielle would win in battle with one another.

Mackenzi Lee and Claire Legrand in conversation
celebration the release of LOKI: WHERE MISCHIEF LIES!

I think one of the most interesting things I discovered was that Mackenzi Lee will write the next two YA Marvel Universe novels with still undisclosed characters! TBH, I was expecting this new line to parallel the recent DC Icons line, with each one written by a different best  selling YA author. I'm so intrigued to hear more about this line!

I also loved hearing about how Marvel asked her to write for them. It was really a situation of "right place, right time." The acquiring editor was reading THE GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE after its release when it was getting a lot of attention and thought the writing voice was perfect for what she was looking for. Mackenzi was given three options for a time period and chose Victorian England. She always had the era on her Maybe Someday list because she was fascinated by a "death train" called the Necropolis Rail, whose sole use was to carry corpses. In fact, this was the only element of the original draft to remain! The only other request from Marvel was to include a character she didn't know much about called The Enchantress, who hasn't appeared in any of the MCU (as of yet. At least!) Other than that, she had free reign of Loki's story.

She also included fun Easter Eggs throughout the novel such as a Stark-owned factory that are a WICK, WINK, NUDGE, NUDGE to Marvel fans. She thought she was overdoing it and would have to scrap those bits, but instead, Marvel loved it and asked for more such moments! The other standout moment of the event was hearing a fun story about the Marvel historians. When Mackenzi wanted to fact-check or learn more about a topic, she'd reach out to the historians and get back really long, detailed Wikipedia length articles about anything from items to characters, complete with references to the comic issues they appeared in. When she asked about the extent of Loki's powers, however, she was merely told, "Magic!" She'd be like, "But...can he do X? Y? Z???" Their answer was always yes and the answer wasn't known because magic!

The event was so much fun. Claire Legrand and the audience asked fantastic questions, and it was lovely to see Mackenzi Lee again! I thought it would be fun to share some of the highlights wiith you so that you could feel like you were in attendance as well! If you love Marvel, or Norse mythology, or heck, just Loki himself, you need to pick up LOKI: WHERE MISCHIEF LIES, available now!

Mischief....what mischief? I can bring the Infinity Gauntlet
to Loki for no good reason and expect a good outcome...right!?

O F F I C I A   I N F O:

Author: Mackenzi Lee
Release Date: Sept. 3, 2019
Publisher: Disney Hyperion

This is the first of three young adult novels from New York Times best-selling author Mackenzi Lee that explores the untapped potential and duality of heroism of popular characters in the Marvel Universe.

Before the days of going toe-to-toe with the Avengers, a younger Loki is desperate to prove himself heroic and capable, while it seems everyone around him suspects him of inevitable villainy and depravity . . . except for Amora. Asgard's resident sorceress-in-training feels like a kindred spirit-someone who values magic and knowledge, who might even see the best in him.

But when Loki and Amora cause the destruction of one of Asgard's most prized possessions, Amora is banished to Earth, where her powers will slowly and excruciatingly fade to nothing. Without the only person who ever looked at his magic as a gift instead of a threat, Loki slips further into anguish and the shadow of his universally adored brother, Thor.

When Asgardian magic is detected in relation to a string of mysterious murders on Earth, Odin sends Loki to investigate. As he descends upon nineteenth-century London, Loki embarks on a journey that leads him to more than just a murder suspect, putting him on a path to discover the source of his power-and who he's meant to be.