Please welcome Signe Pike to The
The Lost Kingdom, the 2nd novel in The Lost Queen Trilogy, was published on September 15th by
Welcome back to The Qwillery. Your new novel,
The Forgotten Kingdom (The Lost Queen 2), was published on September
15th. Has your writing process changed (or not) from when you wrote
The Lost Queen (2018) to The Forgotten Kingdom?
Signe: Thanks for having me back! With this second book I’ve had the chance
to experiment with some new writing elements that I found very exciting –
writing from multiple perspectives being one.
The Forgotten Kingdom also taught me new lessons about trusting my
instincts, and listening to my inner voice that brought some magical
TQ: In our last interview you stated that the most challenging thing about
writing for you is "Drowning out the voice of my inner critic and keeping
my mind focused on the task at hand." Have your challenges changed?
Signe: The challenge with this book was trusting, and time. I had to
give enough slack on the rope and hope the story would take me where I
wanted to end up. And it did! With this book, I felt much more confident
about writing fiction, and I knew and loved my characters so well, the inner
critic isn’t quite as loud.
TQ: What do you wish that you knew about book publishing when
The Lost Queen came out that you know now?
Signe: Honestly, there’s nothing in my perception of publishing that
has changed. It’s a beautiful, resilient creature, book sales are up 12%
this year across the industry, even as we’ve experienced such tremendous
difficulty as a country. People need stories now more than ever, myself
included. They are sacrosanct.
TQ: Tell us something about The Forgotten Kingdom that is not in the
Signe: This book might make you cry. If it doesn’t, you might not be
TQ: Which character in the The Lost Queen series (so far) surprised you the
most? Do you have a favorite character (we won't tell the others)?
Signe: I love all my protagonists, but in
The Forgotten Kingdom, I developed a particular fondness for some of
the new characters who showed up. Muirenn, Talorcan, and especially Diarmid.
I love his ornery sense of humor.
TQ: Please give us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery lines from
The Forgotten Kingdom.
Signe: “I do not know whether I fear him or am calling him as I stand
upon the boulder, high above the iron salt waters, looking out over the
winter hills. I stand upon the boulder and wait for Rhydderch and his men. I
wait. I watch. And I remember.” I’d been stuck trying to figure out how to
begin The Forgotten Kingdom, waiting for Lailoken to come close. When he
finally strode onto the page, this was what I heard. I built the book around
TQ: Is there anything that you can share about the TV series?
Signe: Nothing in TV or film is ever certain, but there is such an
incredible team behind these books, and so far, things are still in the
TQ: What's next?
Signe: I’m looking forward to settling back into my office and diving
into the research again as I start thinking about the third book in the
trilogy. The research is what gets me excited. I find something that it
seems no one else has discovered or written about, and it makes my pulse
skip a beat. When I come across something and think, “How does no one know
about this?” That usually means it’s an element that will surface in the
book. I love piecing historical clues back together. That feels like my
TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.
Signe: I hope I’ll “see you” again for book three! In the meantime,
I’ll be working away….
The Forgotten Kingdom
The Lost Queen 2
Atria Books, September 15, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 496 pages
From the author of The Lost Queen, hailed as “Outlander
meets Camelot” (Kirsty Logan, author of
Things We Say in the Dark) and “The Mists of Avalon for a new
generation” (Linnea Hartsuyker, author of The Golden Wolf), a new
novel in which a forgotten queen of sixth century Scotland claims her
throne as her family is torn apart and war looms.
AD 573. Imprisoned in her chamber, Languoreth awaits news in torment. Her
husband and son have ridden off to wage war against her brother, Lailoken.
She doesn’t yet know that her young daughter, Angharad, who was training
with Lailoken to become a Wisdom Keeper, has been lost in the chaos. As one
of the bloodiest battles of early medieval Scottish history scatters its
survivors to the wind, Lailoken and his men must flee to exile in the
mountains of the Lowlands, while nine-year-old Angharad must summon all
Lailoken has taught her and follow her own destiny through the mysterious,
mystical land of the Picts.
In the aftermath of the battle, old political alliances unravel, opening the
way for the ambitious adherents of the new religion: Christianity. Lailoken
is half-mad with battle sickness, and Languoreth must hide her allegiance to
the Old Way to survive her marriage to the next Christian king of
Strathclyde. Worst yet, the new King of the Angles is bent on expanding his
kingdom at any cost. Now the exiled Lailoken, with the help of a young
warrior named Artur, may be the only man who can bring the Christians and
the pagans together to defeat the encroaching Angles. But to do so, he must
claim the role that will forever transform him. He must become the man known
to history as “Myrddin.”
Bitter rivalries are ignited, lost loves are found, new loves are born, and
old enemies come face-to-face with their reckoning in this compellingly
fresh look at one of the most enduring legends of all time.
The Lost Queen
The Lost Queen 1
Atria Books, June 4, 2019
Trade Paperback, 560 pages
Hardcover and eBook, September 4, 2018
“Outlander meets Camelot” (Kirsty Logan, author of
The Gracekeepers) in the first book of an exciting historical
trilogy that reveals the untold story of Languoreth—a powerful and,
until now, tragically forgotten queen of sixth-century Scotland—twin
sister of the man who inspired the legendary character of Merlin.
Intelligent, passionate, rebellious, and brave, Languoreth is the
unforgettable heroine of The LostQueen, a tale of
conflicted loves and survival set against the cinematic backdrop of
ancient Scotland, a magical land of myths and superstition inspired by the
beauty of the natural world. One of the most powerful early medieval
queens in British history, Languoreth ruled at a time of enormous
disruption and bloodshed, when the burgeoning forces of Christianity
threatened to obliterate the ancient pagan beliefs and change her way of
Together with her twin brother Lailoken, a warrior and druid known to
history as Merlin, Languoreth is catapulted into a world of danger and
violence. When a war brings the hero Emrys Pendragon, to their door,
Languoreth collides with the handsome warrior Maelgwn. Their passionate
connection is forged by enchantment, but Languoreth is promised in
marriage to Rhydderch, son of the High King who is sympathetic to the
followers of Christianity. As Rhydderch's wife, Languoreth must assume her
duty to fight for the preservation of the Old Way, her kingdom, and all
she holds dear.
“Moving, thrilling, and ultimately spellbinding” (BookPage),
The Lost Queen brings this remarkable woman to life—rescuing her
from obscurity, and reaffirming her place at the center of the most
enduring legends of all time. “Moving, thrilling, and ultimately
spellbinding, The Lost Queen is perfect for readers of historical
fiction like The Clan of the Cave Bear and Wolf Hall, and
for lovers of fantasy like Outlander and
The Mists of Avalon” (BookPage).
Signe Pike is the author of The Lost Queen,
The Forgotten Kingdom, and the travel memoir Faery Tale, and
has researched and written about Celtic history and folklore for more than a
decade. Visit her at