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An interview with Kathy MacMillan, author of Dagger and Coin
Welcome back, listeners! We’re so happy that you’re joining us for this episode of Reading with Your Kids Podcast!
Today we’re excited to have Kathy MacMillan, here to share everything about her YA Fantasy Novel Dagger and Coin. The sequel to Sword and Verse, this fantasy novel follows a familiar face—Soraya—as she attempts to rebuild a nation after the downfall of the monarchy It sounds like a great read that tackles political intrigue, relationship drama, and thoughtful characterization.
We loved everything about Kathy’s beautifully written novel for the young adults, and we’re sure you will LOVE it too!
About the Author
Kathy MacMillan is a writer, American Sign Language interpreter, librarian, signing storyteller, and avowed Hufflepuff. Her debut young adult novel, Sword and Verse (2016) was a finalist for the Compton Crook Award, and its companion novel, Dagger and Coin(2018) has been called a “complex feminist fantasy” by author Heidi Heilig. Kathy serves as the co-Regional Advisor for the Maryland/Delaware/West Virginia Region of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. She is also the author of the Little Hands Signing board book series from Familius Press, as well as eight resource books for educators, librarians, and parents, including Little Hands and Big Hands: Children and Adults Signing Together (Huron Street Press, 2013). She lives near Baltimore, MD.
Find Kathy online at
More about Dagger and Coin (Sword and Verse)
The sequel to Sword and Verse follows a familiar face—Soraya—as she attempts to rebuild a nation after the downfall of the monarchy. Readers who love Rae Carson and Kristen Cashore won’t be able to put this fantasy down.
Soraya Gamo was meant to be queen of Qilara, until an Arnath slave rebellion upended the social order and destroyed the capital city. Now, improbably, she sits on the new ruling council beside Mati, Raisa, and Jonis from Book 1, and must work with her former enemies.
She finally holds the political power she always wanted—but over a nation in ruins. As she helps to rebuild Qilara, she can, at last, use what everyone once told her to hide: her brain.
But not everyone is ready to accept that the Arnathim are no longer enslaved to the Qilarites. So when a slave ship arrives in the city, full of Arnathim captured before Qilara fell, the civil unrest that has been bubbling since the rebellion erupts.
Forced to confront her own prejudices, Soraya struggles to gain the trust of the Arnath people she once disregarded and establish peace in what has become chaos. With the threat of attacks high, Gelti, a former guard captain, trains Soraya in self-defense. As the two grow close, tension within the city ramps up, with danger, betrayal, and deception meeting Soraya everywhere she turns.
Friends become foes, adversaries become companions, and the clashing of classes threatens to unravel all the good Soraya has been trying to do. Can Soraya, raised to be a submissive Qilarite lady, learn to be a true leader? Or will the sins of her past forever haunt the footsteps of her future?
Available for purchase at
In this episode, we discuss
- What Dagger and Coin, is all about?
- Where did Kathy get the idea to write this story?
- More about her main character. What makes her unique?
- How does a strong female character taking the lead in a fast-paced plot in her book will appeal to fans of fantasy?
- What inspires Kathy’s book/writing ideas?
- What was the hardest thing about writing this book?
- Some of the topics young adults can discuss with their parents after reading Dagger and Coin.
- What can Kathy’s fans look forward to next, other projects and much more….
A big thank you to Kathy for joining us and for sharing her story! You’re going to just love hearing about Kathy’s fascinating thoughts about YA literature & you’re going to love this episode. Be sure to listen in!
We’d love to hear from you! Contact us and together we can discuss what ideas you think should be included in a future episode, and we can explore potentially setting up an interview. Our goal is to have all voices at the table!
Thanks for tuning in and have a stellar day!😆
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