Danielle L. Jensen: Why Trolls? Because they’re the stuff of Nightmares

April 8, 2014 Author Feature, Blog Tour 11

by Danielle L. Jensen

A lost city…a captive maiden, but wait a possible rebellion, trolls, political intrigue AND tormented love? I’m sold – or I was – because you know I loved Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen

She’s here today to tell us today about why she used trolls in Stolen Songbird.

Stolen Songbird

Read my review of STOLEN SONGBIRD

– ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ – ~ –

As I sit down to write this post, I am very much aware of two things. One, that it is New Year’s Day – the first day of what I’m thinking is going to be a fantastic 2014. Two, that in exactly three months, my debut novel, STOLEN SONGBIRD, will hit the shelves.  What better time, then, to talk about the one aspect of my book that seems to be catching the most amount of attention.


According to that ever-reliable source, Wikipedia, the idea of a troll originated in Norse mythology as an isolated creature dwelling in rocks and mountains – one not noted as being helpful to human beings. Later, in Scandinavian folklore, trolls gained a reputation for their ugliness, strength, and stupidity, as well as for being man-eaters and turning to stone in daylight.

Sound familiar? I bet it does, because according to my unofficial survey, the most common images brought to mind when people hear that my book is about trolls are those ugly dudes from The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit and the boogery creature who attacks Hermione in the girls bathroom in Harry Potter.

Remember this guy?


Occasionally, I get people who are woefully ignorant of fantasy culture, and they think of these guys.

Danielle trolls

But no. Just no.

Needless to say, for most people troll = monster, but not one capable of serving as the central antagonist/love interest for a YA novel.

So, why trolls?

When I started drafting STOLEN SONGBIRD, I knew the creatures living under Forsaken Mountain needed to be called something. I could have made up a name, but I wanted to use a word that already had strong connotations in readers’ minds. I wanted a word that was associated with monsters, darkness, greed, and horror. I wanted a word that made people think of a thing of nightmares. The beast hunting in the midnight spaces, beneath bridges and in forest caves. A word that has never had a single good thing associated with it.

Okay…So what do the trolls in STOLEN SONGBIRD look like?

Ha! Did you really think I was going to write a post with that big of a spoiler?  You’re going to have to read the book to get that particular bit of information. But I will say one thing – they are not the twenty-foot mountain trolls opening the Black Gates of Mordor, because we have half-bloods in this novel. And while there is magic in Trollus, it isn’t THAT kind of magic =)


Stolen Songbird

For those who have loved Seraphina and Graceling comes another truly fabulous fantasy…

For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the ruins of Forsaken Mountain. Time enough for their dark and nefarious magic to fade from human memory and into myth. But a prophesy has been spoken of a union with the power to set the trolls free, and when Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she learns there is far more to the myth of the trolls than she could have imagined.

Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus: escape. Only the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.

But something unexpected happens while she’s waiting – she begins to fall for the enigmatic troll prince to whom she has been bonded and married. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods – part troll, part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.

As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer’s daughter. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch with magic powerful enough to change Trollus forever.

Stolen Songbird (The Malediction Trilogy #1)

Find Book: Amazon | Indiebound | BookDepository | Amazon UK | Goodreads

Stalk the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook

*gasp* This post might also contain affiliate links. To view my full Blog Policy, click here.

Stalk me!

Tabitha (Pabkins)

When I'm in the zone I can flip book pages faster than the eye can see - screaming "More Input!" I'm a book, yarn, & art supply hoarding goblin who loves to draw, make toys and craft all sorts of creepy cute things. My current habit is to listen to audio books while I'm arting it up!
Stalk me!

Latest posts by Tabitha (Pabkins) (see all)

11 Responses to “Danielle L. Jensen: Why Trolls? Because they’re the stuff of Nightmares”

    • Tabitha (Pabkins)

      You asked so I’m going to tell you. This is how I personally I pictured the trolls: human looking or even elven but with silver grey eyes instead. Some of course are hideously deformed.

      However, I really think she leaves it a bit open to interpretation.

    • Tabitha (Pabkins)

      I agree it was a smidge vague to leave it up for interpretation but I really pictured them human like or even elven but with silver eyes you know?

  1. Jessica @ Rabid Reads

    Hahaha! I have to admit that the Harry Potter troll was the first thing that popped into my head when I read about the ruling class in this book, but I’ve always had a fascination with otherworldly creatures. Once when I was a teenager, my mom let me (yes, LET–I wanted to do it) order my ice cream birthday cake, and the guy on the phone asked me if I wanted it decorated, and I was like, “Decorated how?” He went through a list of options and finally mentioned trolls. “Trolls?” I asked. “What kind of trolls?” “You know, the ones with the gem in their belly and the hair.”

    SUCH disappointment, LOL. Yep, this 15 y.o. girl wanted a mountain troll on her birthday cake. No such luck though 😉

    So basically I get it about the trolls.

    • Tabitha (Pabkins)

      That is so sad!! Darn those ‘cutesy’ trolls. That picture there are even ones the author owned she dug them out of storage when I told her that I couldn’t use the original image because of copyright issues.

      You never know whats hanging around in your attic/basement/closet/garage.

      Sorry you didn’t get your special ugly troll birthday cake haha. We also wanted to include a picture of those mountain trolls from the LOTR / Hobbit movies – those guys were AWESOME

    • Tabitha (Pabkins)

      Yes! It really was enjoyable. It reminded me of those oldschool fantasies I used to read when I was a teen. You know before they had a “ya genre”.

      I was just thinking this morning with a friend and we were talking about how the YA genre has so many trends and tropes, foibles that a lot of them fall into and its so refreshing when you find one that stands out among those.

      Are you in the US? I could media mail you my copy =)