Realm of Ice and Shadow by Leigh Stratton – Character Guest Post: Some of Our Favorite Things – Jackson & Ryleigh

Realm of Ice and Shadow
by Leigh Stratton

About Realm of Ice and Shadow

Realm of Ice and Shadow
Young Adult Fantasy
1st in Series
Level Best Books, Level Elevate (November 7, 2023)
Number of Pages 210
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0CKV9K5PG

Seventeen year old Ryleigh Donnovan is certain her life is cursed. Nothing ever goes smoothly, and her first job interview is no exception. An earthquake rocks the building, sending Ryleigh on a frantic search for her younger sister, a search which lands her in the hospital. Terrified they’ll push her for answers she can’t afford to give, Ryleigh flees with a mysterious stranger.

Jackson Maynard is about to be ordained as a Death Dealer, a warrior for the Kingdom of Cymmera, but first he must pass one more test. When he fails to acquire the human girl the prophet has chosen, he’s forced to stand trial for treason. Banished from his realm, he seeks out the girl from the vision, Ryleigh Donnovan, and together they embark on a journey to save his dying kingdom.

Some of Our Favorite Things


My favorite childhood pastime: When my brother, Chayce, and I were kids, we used to play hide and seek in the doorway between the realms.

My favorite thing about Ryleigh: Hmm…my favorite characteristic of Ryleigh’s would have to be her capacity to love. The men of Cymmera have been without feelings for hundreds of years. I truly admire the ease with which Ryleigh shows affection.

My favorite thing about my brother: Chayce and I have our differences, but he’s always been there for me.

Pet peeves: In my realm there are no cars, so when I’m in the human realm and I get to drive, I want to drive fast. I hate getting stuck behind a slow driver.

My favorite plant in Cymmera: Without a doubt, the Tree of Hope. It’s the only tree in my realm that still shows signs of life and symbolizes hope for the future of my kingdom.

My favorite animal: Giant Hounds, but I’m biased.

My favorite powers: Skipping between realms is pretty awesome!

My dream vacation: The first time I ever transferred to the human realm, I landed smack in the middle of a tropical rain forest. Coming from my realm, that was quite a shock. I’d love to go back and spend some time there.

My favorite memory of my parents: The day they gave me my pet hound, Nika. My father stood with his arm around my mother, and the joy on her face was something I’ll never forget.

My favorite thing about me: I am extremely loyal. To me, that is one of the most important qualities you can have.


My favorite childhood pastime: I loved playing the piano. I was never very good, but I love playing.

My favorite thing about Jackson: My favorite characteristic of Jackson’s is his protective streak. It’s really quite charming how protective he is of both me and my sister, Mia.

My favorite thing about my sister: Her loyalty. Mia is fiercely loyal to those she loves.

Pet peeves: People who take their parents for granted. Drives me crazy, but I guess that’s to be expected.

Favorite plant in my realm: White Birch Trees always remind me of my mother. We planted three White Birch Trees in our front yard when I was little, so they’ll always be my favorites.

My favorite animal: It used to be dogs, but now…well, how can you top dragons?!

My favorite powers: I don’t have full use of any powers, yet, but the feeling of power—kind of like static electricity—is really cool.

My dream vacation: I would love to spend a week at the beach doing nothing responsible! Just relaxing, reading a book, swimming, and maybe playing volleyball.

My favorite thing about my parents: My fondest memories of my parents are from the family nights they always insisted on. We’d all play board games—even Mia who was really little—then have popcorn and watch a movie. They always said Friday night would be family night even when we were older, and…well…

My favorite thing about me: After everything I’ve just been through, I’d have to say my ability to adapt.

About Leigh Stratton

Young adult and middle-grade fantasy writer Leigh Stratton is the author of the Kingdom of Cymmera series and the Ranger of the Realms series. Leigh grew up in a small town on Long Island where she spent many lazy afternoons with a good book. She would read at the beach, outside beneath a tree, anywhere she could find to curl up and lose herself in a story for a few hours. She loves reading as much now as she did back then, only now she enjoys the added pleasure of creating stories of her own.





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