Coming in 2020…

I have exciting news for fans of THE CHARMED CHILDREN OF ROOKSKILL CASTLE. I’m currently at work on a companion novel, tentatively titled…


Here’s a brief teaser:

Not “the” watch…but a hint!

Isaac Wolf is a Jewish refugee from Germany in 1942 when he stumbles into a powerful magic. He thinks he can use it for the greater good. But this is not a story about a chosen one who saves the world – rather it is about an ordinary twelve-year old boy who learns the limitations of magic and that sometimes success is defined by how we deal with failure.

Yes, all your favorite characters (especially Kat) will still appear in this next story, also set in Rookskill Castle. I’m also writing about how it feels for Isaac to have to leave his home and family and travel alone to a strange country, encounter a deep and ancient magic, and have to make tough choices.

Add to that a Nazi determination to find magical artifacts, malevolent spirits, parallel worlds and time travel, the evil magister, and a reconstituted Lady Eleanor (who is not what she was!) – I hope you’ll find a novel as mysterious and thrilling as the first.

More hints about THE WITCH’S WATCH very soon!

Answers To Secrets: A Sequel!

Zarella asked,

Will there be a sequel to this book? Because the ending seems to be that the magister wants to find Kat. Also, what does the magister need Eleanor’s body parts for? Thank you! It was so, so amazing. I swallowed the entire book in four hours. It’s so dark and wonderful, and really kept me reading. I am obsessed and addicted to it.

And my answer…YES! I’m working right now on a book that is part sequel, part companion novel. It will feature a new protagonist (don’t worry, Kat will still be around) and some wicked new antagonists. Stayed tuned for a 2020 release!

Happy Halloween!

Once again, it’s that Halloween time! Calling all ghosts and goblins! Especially those who love to read, and who have enough candy to last a lifetime.

Curious City is once again hosting TrickorReaters for Halloween, and THE CHARMED CHILDREN OF ROOKSKILL CASTLE is participating. Here’s the direct link to what you’ll find about Rookskill Castle and company, but search the site for other spooktacular goodies.

And don’t forget how easy it is for moms and dads and guardians to put links to story give-aways in their Halloween treat baskets, so that brains are fed as well as tummies.

Get your spook on with great fun reads this Halloween.

And another reminder that there is a great “get-to-know-your-library” game right here!

Happy hauntings!

Answers to Secrets: A Sequel?

Piper asked:

Will there be a second book? 

I loved it! Where Janet found that creativity… Especially about the chatelaine… So creative! Thank you! Also, I loved the interactions between Kat and Peter. *hint, hint* 

Hi Piper!!

Thank you so much for your note and I’m so happy you loved CHARMED CHILDREN! Yes, I think Kat and Peter definitely have a future together whether as friends or something more.
I have been working on a second book, but there’s no timeline for publication yet. In the meantime, look for THE LAST TRUE KNIGHT (another historical fantasy) coming in 2018.

Answers to Secrets: Another Fan Letter

Robbie said,

I am ready for the next book about the Elizabethan England and the Rookskill sequel and I am so excited on these books. I hope they will be as good as The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle.

Hi Robbie!

Thank you so very much for writing me. I’m delighted that you liked THE CHARMED CHILDREN OF ROOKSKILL CASTLE! And I’m working very hard to write books at least as good – if not better.

Please keep watching, and I’ll make announcements about the new books here.

Answers to Secrets: A Wonderful Comment

Robbie wrote to say: “I loved this book. I picked it to read for a story book talk.This book is one of my top 3 favs.”

Hi Robbie!

I’m sorry it took me so long to reply, but thank you SO much!! I love the fact that it’s one of your top 3.
Stay tuned – I’m working on a new story now that will be out in about a year. This one is set in an alternate Elizabethan England. (And still working on a possible ROOKSKILL sequel, too.)
All best wishes, Janet Fox

Answers To Secrets: A Sequel?

Hi all! I have a new question from a reader:

Ben asks:

A real page turner! Love the setting! Is there going to be a sequel? I just read Rookskill Castle and I am anxious to find out what happens.

Hi Ben! – Thank you!! I am working on a second Rookskill book but it won’t be out for a while. I do have another book coming out in 2018 called THE LAST TRUE KNIGHT, which is set in an alternative Elizabethan England.

But the possible sequel to Rookskill Castle? Hang on! I’ll give you a hint about a few things that happen…the magister makes an even greater appearance; we meet a new character, a Jewish boy who is a refugee from Nazi Germany; and the Lady returns but not in the way you might expect.

I hope that will tide you over for now, and thanks so much for writing!




Fun News For Rookskill Fans

For fans of THE CHARMED CHILDREN OF ROOKSKILL CASTLE, I’ve got some fun news to report.

First, CHARMED CHILDREN has been shortlisted for the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association 2017 awards. This is a terrific honor, and I’m among some amazing authors.

And second, I’ve been selected as a Spirit of Texas Reading Program middle school author for 2017, which means that libraries in Texas will have access to extended materials prepared for middle school readers, all about CHARMED CHILDREN. And if you live in Texas, I’ll be there to visit schools!

Thanks to all of you who have loved this book and helped its success.

The Haunted Castles of Scotland

What is it about castles, especially the ancient castles of the British Isles? I love them, and so, it seems, do many of you. Here’s my guess as to why they are fascinating: they’re big and elaborate; they’re old and so have plenty of interesting history; and many of them are apparently haunted.castle

As I researched haunted Scottish castles I discovered a couple of interesting things. First, many (many) are haunted by someone described as a “Green Lady” (“Gray Ladies” are also a presence, but many more green – maybe for reasons I’ll come to.) Second, many are also associated with children. Naturally, both of these bear on THE CHARMED CHILDREN OF ROOKSKILL CASTLE.

At Ethie Castle, near Arbroath, guests have heard the cries of a child at night, accompanied by the sound of a wheeled toy being pulled across the floor. The Green Lady of Dunstaffnage teases and plays with the living children of the castle. After a female skeleton was unearthed behind a wall in Fyvie, a Green Lady began to haunt the castle; she might be the late Dame Lillian Drummond, who was starved to death in 1601 by her husband (nice guy.) At Crathes Castle near Aberdeen, a Green Lady often appears near one of the fireplaces. She picks up an infant, and then they vanish together.

Sometimes Green Ladies are thought to be Gruagach, who are common household spirits often associated with children, and not associated with anything evil. The typical Gruagach is a brownie, the household helper said to inhabit every home (read more about them here.)

Green Lady ghosts are only seen in parts of the United Kingdom, and nowhere else. They are described as slender young women in flowing green gowns with long golden hair. In some cases, they appear as protectors by local farmers, who cite stories of Green Ladies herding their animals to safety during storms or border raids. Many times they are associated with water. Legend has it that a Green Lady will arrive at a croft dripping wet during a storm and ask to be admitted, and when they are admitted they become the protector of that croft. The Dunstaffnage Green Lady and the Green Lady of Fyvie have also been thought to be Glaistig – a being that could be benign or a vengeful ghost. Glaistigs also have a water association.Dunrobin Castle

The water association of these spirits is not surprising given Scotland’s many lochs, rivers, burns, and rills, the frequent rains, and the ocean on all sides. I wonder whether the green in Green Lady is a reference to water, and maybe also to the watery aspect of a ghost.

I’ve experienced a couple of haunted moments myself – one when many years ago I visited southern England and stayed in a hotel that was once a small castle in Devonshire, and was associated with my mother’s family. My mother and I shared a room and were convinced we were visited during the night. Perhaps it was a Green Lady, for she was very benign, and was visiting a mother and her child – maybe even her distant relatives!

Have you ever had any ghostly experiences, or visited any haunted castles?