Author Chat: Mette Ivie Harrison

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For those that have not been reading YA literature you might not have heard of an author named Mette Ivie Harrison – but seriously people… if you haven’t heard of her you’ve been living under a rock! But all jokes aside, I am very honoured to have Mette Harrison as part of our 2012 YA Saves Reading Challenge for February’s focus.

One of the most well known classical romantic stories is that of Tristan and Isolde.  Mette Harrison’s release of Tris & Izzie is a retelling of this complex yet romantic story.  I am very excited to share with you the opportunity I had to ask Mette more about her own retelling, her writing and what she has planed next!

Tristan and Isolde‘ is a beautiful story.  How is your retelling of ‘Tristan and Isolde‘ different from the original?

Well, it was tricky to do a story about adultery, essentially, set in high school, where the characters aren’t married. Then there is the whole question of the torturous love triangle. I love romance, but love triangles are rarely done well, and I enjoyed poking a little fun at the whole idea of a woman who can’t decide which hot guy she *really* loves the most. I put in a lot of tiny details that very few people will get, since I used as my foundation the 1100 AD version in Middle High German, which not many people have access to. The black sails at the end, for example, and some of the names, like Gurmun the serpent, are from that version.

If you made a potion for your best friend like Izzie, what would it be and what would you want the outcome to be? Or do you think it would go wonky?

Oh, magic always goes off in its own direction, doesn’t it? That’s one of the great lessons of life, that you have control of something or someone only for so long, and then you have to let go and see what happens, have confidence in yourself and enjoy. I did have a best friend in high school who was in love with the wrong guy and I kept trying to get her to ask other guys out. One of the guys I set her up with was my brother. We were supposed to go on a double date together, but I got sick and ended up nearly overdosing on aspirin, trying to keep up my promise to double with her. Later, we gave up trying to find her dates and she just hung out with me and my boyfriend as a weird threesome.

You’ve written a lot of books about princesses… what draws you to writing about such characters?

Princesses are just what happens to sell. I have probably 50 other completed novels about completely different characters, but they don’t get published for whatever reason. It’s hard as an author to figure out why it is that people seem to connect with only one kind of writing. I don’t think I have the answer to that. It might be because I grew up on a farm in central New Jersey or because I loved to read Robin Hood and fairy tales and Shakespeare in elementary school and have a flavor for an old-fashioned language. It might be because I do princesses with a twist that people really like. Who knows?

 It’s always a shame when well written books cannot be published because of what is what is no popular at the moment. Hopefully we will see those book on the shelves one day.
Let’s pretend you didn’t write Tris & Izzie… what would you say to someone in recommending this book?

It’s a light, humorous retelling that is the perfect antidote to those tired of the never ending stream of dystopians and paranormal romances.  

Can you give us any hints about any new YA (or non-YA) projects you may be currently working on or just finished?

 I am currently working on Two Princesses (title not yet certain) about two princesses from opposing kingdoms who meet and become friends. They have to then make decisions in which their friendship and the welfare of their kingdoms are pitted against each other. It’s sort of like Mary Queen of Scots and Queen Elizabeth I retold with magic. I used to love reading about that historical time period in England and read a lot more about it researching for this novel (which will hopefully turn into a trilogy).


Find Mette Ivie Harrison

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Author Chat with Emily Franklin

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I am very pleased to welcome Emily Franklin, as our first author to be interviewed for the 2012 YA Saves Reading Challenge, hosted by myself and Andrea at The Busy Bibliophile.

Emily Franklin is most known for her Principles of Love series, which [what the series is about] as well as for her most recent novel Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance, published last year and receiving rav reviews.

The first installment of her successful The Pricnipcles of Love series demands you pick it up all within the first line of the synopsis is: “The Gilmore Girls meets The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.” Who didn’t love The Gilmore Girls & The Sisterhood.  I know I sure did, and still do!

What was your inspiration for The Principle of Love series and for Love Bukowski’s characters?

I went to boarding school and hadn’t written about the experience before, So I wanted to explore that.  Plus, I love the idea of having your father literally over your shoulder while you’re trying to just be a regular teenager.

Having a father as your principle must make it really hard for Love to form love interests and crushes.  How does Love deal with this? Its not like she can sneak out, living on the campus grounds…

Well, maybe not in the 1st book! But later on.. I think that Love, like all teenagers, has to deal with how much input her dad has in her day to day life.  She does manage to find love, though perhaps not where or how she thought.  Plus, her dad is still so wounded by the mystery of Love’s mother that Love has to figure that out, too.

Does Love’s namesake bring her luck in her endeavors?

I’m not sure she’d agreed with that! Love wants LOVE just like all of us desire it – she just has to sort out who, where, and when.  Simple, right? 

When you are writing about love in any way, what do you use for inspiration?

It’s pretty easy to recall the longing I had in 10th grade or at age 22 so I can draw on my own feelings.  Also, I listen to music as a form of time travel and that helps, too.  I’m so happy in my own marriage, but I never thought I’d find the kind of love I have now, so that in itself is pretty inspirational.

What are currently some of your favorite “love” themed books (they don’t necessarily have to be young adult)?

Well, I have to give a plug to my next book which is all about love and friendship.  TESS MASTERSON WILL GO TO PROM is a brave story and I wrote it with Brendan Halpin.  We also wrote THE HALF-LIFE OF PLANETS, which is an unlikely love story about a girl with a past and a boy with Asperger’s.

Lastly, what is your favorite thing about February?

I could say hot chocolate with marshmallows, warm boots, my awesomely puffy duvet cover, or laughing while sledding.  Or I could just say at least it’s short!

Emily Franklin has written many YA novels!
Here are just a few:
 Don’t miss out on Emily Franklin’s new book: Tess Masterson Will Go To Prom, coming out March 2012!
Lucas and Tessa’s friendship is the stuff of legend in their small Midwestern town. So it’s no surprise when Lucas finally realizes his feelings for Tessa are more than friendship and he asks her to prom. What no one expected, especially Lucas, was for Tessa to come out as a lesbian instead of accepting his heartfelt invitation. Humiliated and confused, Lucas also feels betrayed that his best friend kept such an important secret from him.
What’s worse is Tessa’s decision to wear a tastefully tailored tuxedo to escort her female crush, sparking a firestorm of controversy. Lucas must decide if he should stand on the sidelines or if he should stand by his friend to make sure that Tessa Masterson will go to prom.
Emily Franklin and Brendan Halpin tackle both sides of a ripped-from-the headlines story to show that true friendship will triumph after all.
You can find Emily Franklin on her WebsiteTwitter | Facebook

Q&A with J. Gabriel Gates

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With just a few days left until Halloween, I thought it would be Perfect to ask J. Gabriel Gates a few questions about his new novel, The Sleepwalkers, a novel perfect for the Halloween Holiday!




I am sure you get this question a lot, but what was your inspiration for Sleepwalkers?
When I was in college at Florida State, there was this abandoned insane asylum way out in the woods outside Tallahassee called Sunnyland and I snuck into it a few times with some  friends of mine.  It had been empty for about twenty years.  There were wards where kids were kept, weird murals on the walls, strange banging sounds behind closed doors—then you’d open the door and find the room behind it empty.  Being there really felt like you were standing in the middle of a horror movie.  And the little hairs on the back of my neck were standing up the whole time.  Outside the place there were all these old live oak trees draped in Spanish moss.  It was all just supremely creepy.  When I decided to write a horror novel, my mind automatically gravitated back to that place, and it became the inspiration for the Dream Center in the book.    
I’ve heard from quite a few readers that The Sleepwalkers will give you nightmares… how do you feel about that?
Well, as twisted as it might sound, I take it as a compliment.  If you feel terrified riding a rollercoaster, that means it was a good rollercoaster.  To use another metaphor, a horror novel that doesn’t get inside your head and scare you is like a sports car that only goes thirty-five miles per hour.  What’s the point?  The horror that really gets me is the stuff that’s deeply rooted in the sub-conscious.  There are ideas and imagery that just strike a disturbing chord in us at the deepest level.  It’s not about blood or guts or people getting their heads chopped off.  It’s about tapping into something even deeper than the material world, something older and more primal.  That’s the stuff of nightmares.  And it’s the stuff of good horror novels, too.   

What type of books do you read? Do you personally read thrillers and paranormal books?
I read a really wide range of books.  I grew up loving fantasy, books like the Lord of the Rings series and the Shannara series by Terry Brooks.  But for years now, I’ve been  concentrating on reading literary fiction.  I love Hemingway, Dostoevsky, Herman Hesse, Shakespeare.  If you want to be a great writer, you need to read great writers.  To give you an idea of how widely my taste ranges, the last book I read was 1776 by David McCullough.  Now I’m reading Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Album.  After that, I’ll probably dip back into some Stephen King. 
I’m always very curious about how writers write – do you have a writing routine?
I definitely have a routine. I write in the mornings.  I wake up, walk my dog, eat my breakfast, make some coffee, and write.  I do that six days a week— every day except Sundays.  When I’m really into a project or pushing to meet a deadline, I’ll work for an hour or two in the afternoon, too, with a break in between the morning and afternoon sessions for lunch and a workout.  That’s the difference between a professional writer and an amateur, writing every day.  If you want to be a writer, write.  It’s a lifestyle.  It’s that simple.    
Can you give any hints into any new projects that you might be working on now, or will be soon?
Sure!  I just wrapped up work on Ghost Crown: The Tracks, Book 2, which is coming out in March.  It’s the second book in my teen martial arts fantasy saga The Tracks.  (Book 1, Dark Territory, is available now.)  Currently, I’m working on a really exciting novel called Blood  Zero  Sky, which is an action-packed, though-provoking dystopian adventure set in the not-too-distant future.  It’s going to be coming out in fall of 2012, also from HCI Books.  So, I’ve been keeping busy.  Information about all my projects is available on my website, www.jgabrielgates.com and on Facebook.
Can you give one interesting fact about yourself that no one knows (promise I won’t tell)?
Ha ha.  Good question.  I don’t know if I can think of anything that NO ONE else knows, since I’m a pretty open book…  But since my protagonist in The Sleepwalkers is a high schooler, maybe my readers would be interested to know something about my life in high school.  I played on the soccer team all four years, and I did a year each of wrestling, tennis, and track.  I would probably have done more sports, but most of the rest of my spare time was spent doing theater.  I loved acting in plays, and that’s actually what my college degree was in – theater.  I was also the homecoming escort (runner up to the king) and gave my class’s graduation speech.  For a horror writer, I guess it was a pretty benign existence.  I didn’t fight any supernatural monstrosities or anything.  But I did have a lot of fun.
You can find J. Gabriel Gates on his Site / Twitter / Facebook
 A chilling and masterfully crafted teen horror novel guaranteed to keep the pages turning, the mind reeling, and the lamp on any reader’s bedside table on long after midnight.

Privileged and popular Caleb Mason is celebrating his high school graduation when he receives a mysterious, disturbing letter from his long-lost childhood playmate, Christine. Caleb and his jokester friend Bean decide to travel to his tiny hometown of Hudsonville, Florida, to find her. Upon arrival, they discover the town has taken a horrifying turn for the worse. Caleb’s childhood home is abandoned and his father has disappeared. Children are going missing. The old insane asylum has reopened, and Christine is locked inside. Her mother, a witch, is consumed with madness, and Christine’s long-dead twin sister whispers clues to Caleb through the static of an a.m. radio. The terrifying prophesies of the spirits are coming to pass. Sixteen clocks are ticking; sixty-six murdered souls will bring about the end of the world. As Caleb peels back layer after layer of mystery, he uncovers a truth more horrible than anything he had imagined, a truth that could only be uttered by the lips of the dead.

 Author J. Gabriel Gates is a native of Marshall, Michigan. The son of an English teacher, his passion for the written word began at a young age. During college, another passion – for performing – led him to get his B.A. degree in theater from Florida State University.

During his years in Los Angeles, he appeared in a dozen national TV commercials and penned several screenplays while laying the groundwork for his career as a novelist.

His first two novels are Dark Territory: The Tracks, book 1, which is scheduled for release July 1st, and The Sleepwalkers, coming October 3rd, both from HCI Books.

He currently lives in Southwest Michigan.

Author chat with Michael Griffo

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What books did you read as a teenager?
I read quite a bit as a teenager.  I don’t know if I would have been labeled a bookworm since I was also very active in theatre, sports, and had a really fun social life, but I always made time to read.  My all-time favorite book as a teenager is A SEPARATE PEACE by John Knowles.  I just loved the characters of Phineas and Gene and the special bond that they shared.  I honestly don’t know if the author intended for them to be more than just friends, but that’s how I interpreted it.  And at that time in my life I had not been exposed to any literature that focused on a same-sex loving relationship.  It was only when I reread it as an adult that I realized it’s also quite well-written; when I was younger I was just enthralled by the intimacy of the boys’ relationship.
Beyond that I also read a lot of Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew mysteries!  They were quick, fun, and like a soap opera just for kids.  I still love them and have kept a few books and bought others on eBay.  Today’s teenagers might find them old-fashioned, but I would urge them to give one or two a try.  They really are timeless.
I also loved anything that had to do with the supernatural so I was especially drawn to Shirley Jackson and Lois Duncan.  Jackson’s books and short stories have been celebrated and are great examples of young adult literature while Duncan’s are a little more mainstream, but definitely just as enjoyable.  My favorites are Jackson’s We Have Always Lived in The Castle and Duncan’s Summer of Fear which was made into a great TV-movie with Linda Blair and Lee Purcell!  Totally worth netflixing!  But make sure you get the original and not the remake! 
Do you write on a schedule or do you write when you are inspired? Do you have a writing routine??  
Since I currently work full-time I definitely write on a schedule, otherwise I would never complete a book!  Before I begin the actual writing, I write a detailed outline, usually 50-60 pages.  The outline serves as a blueprint, almost like a map of the entire book.  It includes all the major plot points, some dialogue if it comes to me, and any other thoughts I might have that I know I’ll want to include in the book.  When that’s done I know I’m okay because the bare bones of the book are already written and I can break down the outline into chapters. 
I will usually start writing a chapter at 6:00am on a Saturday.  (Luckily I’m a morning person!)  And since the outline is already written I just refer to it and flesh out what’s already there.  I don’t have to worry about starting from scratch or staring at a blank page and this is very comforting because staring at a blank page and having nothing to say is a writer’s worst fear.  It also allows me to be more creative.  It might sound counterintuitive, but it isn’t.  Since I have the plot points already written out, I know how the chapter will begin and end, I don’t have to worry about those elements.  I can then concentrate on the fun parts: the description of the surroundings, the dialogue, the symbolism and the wordplay – all the fun stuff that elevates the book from a plain outline to (hopefully) interesting and engaging prose.  I’ll keep at the chapter until I’m finished and if it’s a good day I may start a bit of the next chapter, but usually I’m exhausted. 
After the chapter is done, I’ll leave it for a day or so and then start editing in the early morning or the evening after work and just fine-tune some of the language and add a new idea or inspiration I may have had after I finished the chapter.  There have been only one or two occasions where I’ve scraped large portions of the chapter and had to do a heavy rewrite in this early stage of writing.  That’s not to say that my writing is letter perfect on the first go-around; that’s only to say that since I don’t have the luxury of time I really can’t spend much time editing and rewriting.  At some point I do hope to be able to write full-time and be able to spend more time editing, but for now this is how I have to work if I want to produce a novel. 
Are you a reader? If so what types of books do you read?
Like most writers, I’m an avid reader.  We just love books and are drawn to the written word.  I read a variety of books so it’s a bit hard for me to say I only read non-fiction or supernatural, I kind of read whatever interests me and I have a wide range of tastes.  For instance, I just finished Catching Fire, the second book in the Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins.  I loved the first book and really liked the second one.  Collins is a terrific writer and I actually learned a lot from reading her first book.  She’s got a great style: simple, concise, and immediate.  A very different writing style from The Archangel Academy series, but just as engaging.  And I’m also in the middle of Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time which is a non-fiction book that can best be described as ‘physics for non-scientific people.’  It’s very interesting and quite enjoyable, but I’m definitely not a left-brain person so I’m reading it slowly.
Other than that I will just pick up books that look interesting or (dare I admit it) that have a cool looking cover.  Next up I’m going to read Planet of the Apes by Pierre Boulle.  He’s a French writer and I’ve never read anything by him, but I’ve always loved the Planet of the Apes movies and TV-series so I thought it was about time that I read the original novel the whole franchise was based upon.
And of course I love the classics.  Starting with Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (my favorite book of all time) and moving on to anything by Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, Jack London, F. Scott Fitzgerald, the list goes on and on. 
Can you give us any hints about what is going to happen next in your Archangel Academy series?
Well without giving too much away the third book is entitled UNAFRAID.  Just like the first two titles, this one isn’t arbitrary, but actually has meaning and insight into the story.  In this third book Michael needs to battle his fear and realize that if he wants to continue growing and become a man he needs to trust himself and harness his fear.  Even when he’s faced with powerful enemies and agonizing decisions. 
The book also steps up David’s desire to rid the world of water vampires which leads to devastating consequences that will forever change his race.  We also find out the chilling way that David became a vampire in the first place and how it has effected Archangel Academy ever since.
Besides Michael and Ronan, all the characters have major journeys: Brania, Imogene, Nakano, Saoirse, and Ciaran.  And a new character is introduced – Ruby.  She’s Penry’s twin sister who was only briefly mentioned in UNNATURAL.  She returns and holds the secret to David’s past and Brania’s future.  I’ve actually just gotten myself excited all over again for this third entry and I’ve reread it dozens of times already! 
Lastly, is there something fun about yourself you would love to share with us?
Let’s see – I love to sing.  I’ve done it professionally in the past and have absolutely no shame getting in front of a microphone whether it be on a big stage, a karaoke bar, or just at my desk at work.  I will often break into song at the most inappropriate moments!
Can I just say, “Amazing Answers!”  Thank you so much Michael Griffo.  I love your writing routine – I wish I could become that disciplined with my writing, which sadly is hardly anything.
While I might not have a professional background in singing, I do tend to break out in song in the car when I think no one is looking (windows protect me lol).
Thank you again so much!
~~~~~~~~~~~

Archangel Academy is more than a school to Michael Howard. Within its majestic buildings and serene English grounds, he’s found friends, new love, and a place that feels more like home than Nebraska ever did. But the most important gift of Archangel Academy is immortality. . .
Life as a just-made vampire is challenging for Michael, even with Ronan, an experienced vamp, to guide him. Michael’s abilities are still raw and unpredictable. To add to the turmoil, the ancient feud between rival vampire species is sending ripples of discord through the school. And beneath the new headmaster’s charismatic front lies a powerful and very personal agenda.
Yet the mysteries lurking around the Academy pale in comparison to the secrets emerging from Michael’s past. And choosing the wrong person to trust—or to love—could lead to an eternity of regret. . . 

Michael Griffo was born, raised, and has since relocated to New Jersey. He is an award-winning playwright and all of his plays have been produced throughout the country and in London. Two of his plays — CLOUDY and 5G/10B — have been published in Smith & Kraus’s Best 10 Minute Plays for 2 Actors: 2005 and CLOUDY is licensed by Playscripts, Inc.

His first novel, BETWEEN BOYFRIENDS, was written under a pseudoymn, Michael Salvatore (which is actually the author’s middle name) and is a hilarious piece of gay fiction that is best described as Sex & The City meets Will & Grace. He has also written a novella published in REMEMBERING CHRISTMAS, a gay Christmas anthology.

UNNATURAL, written under the author’s real name, is the first book of the Archangel Academy series that also include UNWELCOME and UNAFRAID. UNNATURAL is a young adult novel that explores the relationship of two young outcasts who meet at an all boy’s boarding school in north western England. Set against a backdrop of vampires and the supernatural, it is a coming of age story that young and old alike will be able to relate to.

You can find Michael Griffo on his Site / Twitter

Q&A with Christopher Golden

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If you haven’t already guessed, I’m a huge fan of Buffy The Vampire Slayer.  So it is with great pleasure that Christopher Golden is with us today!
So without further ado I give you Christopher Golden!
 
You have written many many novels, mainly in what can be called the ‘paranormal’ genre.  What attracts you to write these types of books?

 

I’ve loved stories about the supernatural my entire life.  They’re not the only kinds of stories I enjoy–I love mystery and fantasy and western and even stories about ordinary things–but stories of the supernatural are wonderful ways to explore both our beliefs about life and afterlife, and the ways in which dire circumstances often bring out the best in people.
 
 
All the characters in your Buffy The Vampire Slayer books are very witty.  You have created timeless word banter.  How do you do this? Do you have a book of ‘one liners’ already to use? Or have you even created one?  (hint hint – this would be a best seller!)

 

Nope.  Honestly, I often have to explain to people that I’m not that funny.  Sometimes I write characters who are funny, but personally, not so much.
 
 
Being an author of so many novels, how do you come up with so many different ideas? And where do you find the time to write them all down?

 

I’ve always been very fortunate in that I’ve never been short of ideas.  For every idea that finally becomes a novel or a story, there are three or four I’ll never get to tell.

 

When you’re not reading or writing, what do you do?

 

I try to spend any spare time with my family.  I have a wife and three children, and they make life very full.
 
 
Are you currently working on anything new that you can share?
 
I’m writing a trilogy of graphic novels with Charlaine Harris called CEMETERY GIRL and a new novella with Mike Mignola that must remain nameless for the moment.
 
 
Is there anything else you would like share, such as an interesting fact about yourself (just for fun!)?

 

In the bio in the back of my first novel, I noted that I enjoyed Cajun food, Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream, and the music of the Allman Brothers Band.  That was seventeen years ago, but I still do. 
 
 
And lastly, what is your favorite thing about Halloween?
 
I’m tempted to say the candy, but what I love most about Halloween in New England is the crisp chill in the air and the slightly spooky edge that still exists when I see so many people wandering around my neighborhood in costumes, in the dark.
 
 

Q&A with Lynn Messina + Giveaway

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I am very honored to have Lynn Messina with us today, who has graciously agreed to answer a few fun questions.
If you haven’t read Lynn Messina’s Little Vampire Women, get off your bum and do so!
So without further ado, I give you Lynn:
What is your favorite thing about Halloween?

During my trick-or-treating days, my absolute favorite thing was the big score. You’d get house after house of boring old Smarties and lollipops and candy corn and then suddenly—bam!—a full-size Milky Way bar. Now my favorite thing is roasting pumpkin seeds. Store-bought ones just don’t taste the same. 

 
Why turn a classic into a paranormal novel?
Chapter 11 of Little Women. Amy, who’s always getting words wrong, calls Aunt March “a regular samphire.” Jo corrects her: “She means vampire.” I had mashups on the brain because I thought Pride & Prejudice & Zombies was the funnest thing ever. So when I read that, it all clicked. 
 
Having turned a classic into a paranormal novel, do you love reading other classics? And if so which ones?
I just discovered Hemingway. I recently read The Sun Also Rises for my book group and was astonished by how lovely the sparse prose was–astonished because I thought Hemingway was a lot of overwrought masculinity. But I was wrong. I’m reading A Moveable Feast now. 
 
What paranormal/scary books are your favorites?
Harry Potter, of course. And I loved The Time Traveler’s Wife. (Does that count? Something supernatural going on there.) I’m not good with scary books. Whenever I get frightened, I close my eyes and obviously that’s sort of counterproductive to reading.
What is your most fondest/funnies/scary memory of Halloween?
Fondest memory: The year my son decided he wanted to be a giant taco for Halloween and my husband spent weeks devising a plan using yellow foam, green cellophane, red paint and yards of yarn. Scariest memory: Same one. I look at the amount of effort, creativity and craftsmanship that went into the costume and my blood runs cold. I could never have done it.

 

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~~~~~~~~~~~~

 “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any corpses.”

The dear, sweet March sisters are back, and Marmee has told them to be good little women. Good little vampire women, that is. That’s right: Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy have grown up since you last read their tale, and now they have (much) longer lives and (much) more ravenous appetites.

Marmee has taught them well, and so they live by an unprecedented moral code of abstinence … from human blood. Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy must learn to get along with one another, help make society a better place, and avoid the vampire hunters who pose a constant threat to their existence. Plus, Laurie is dying to become a part of the March family, at any cost. Some things never change.

This horrifying — and hilarious — retelling of a timeless American classic will leave readers craving the bloodthirsty drama on each and every page.

Lynn Messina grew up on Long Island and studied English at Washington University in St. Louis. She has worked at The Museum of Television & Radio (now the Paley Center for Media), TV Guide, In Style, Rolling Stone, Fitness, Self and a bunch of wonderful magazines that have long since disappeared. She mourns the death of print journalism in New York City, where she lives with her husband and two sons. She is author of five novels, including the best-selling Fashionistas, which has been translated into 15 languages and is in development as a feature film. She loves traveling and watching TV.

You can find Lynn Messina on her Site / GoodReads / Twitter

Author Chat with Shanice Williams

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What was your inspiration in writing this novel?

I was sixteen, it was the summer holidays and everyone I knew had jetted off to some fancy country, sunning themselves and enjoying wild parties. I on the other hand was stuck at home, in my room, with nothing but my computer and my books at my side. I had discovered a site called Wattpad, where people could post stories and share them with everyone. So I decided to try it out myself. I had always wondered what it would be like to have to go to US and have to live their lifestyle, and the obstacles I would be faced with. And I basically found my answer’s through Suranne.

When you are not writing what do you like to do for fun?

I am somewhat addicted to a multiplayer FPS game called Enemy Territory. I am definitely a gamer girl. If I’m not doing that I’m with my boyfriend or my friends, having a good old drink down the pub! (Something which I can’t do when I visit the US because the drinking age is 21!!… My heart sank when I found it out :O)

As this is your first novel, can you tell us what you liked most and disliked most about the publishing process?

I signed the contract on my 18th Birthday. That was the best bit. Seeing the cover work and planning the blurb and stuff is fun too. Edits was probably a little more boring, but I got through it in the end!

Is there a fun and unique fact about yourself you would like share, just for fun?

I’m addicted to Pogo sticks. Ha! Nah just kidding. Umm… I’m rather boring to be honest. I taught myself to play the piano, I doubt that’s really unique but it’s all I got!

Do you have anything new in the works or planned?

Yes. There are rumours of a sequel to Kane Richards, but I’m in two minds about it. It will depend really on the response from the first one. I’ve started a bit of a fantasy/romance novel, and I’ve also got another one planned which is sort of based on a true story. So, got my work cut out for me!

 After an unexpected transfer to the States for her senior year, Suranne’s new friends give her just one instruction: stay away from Kane Richards. According to everyone, he’s a heartless playboy concerned only for himself. With one glance, it’s easy to see why he gets away with it. But things aren’t always what they seem- especially when he sets his sights on her and whispers that she’s different. Despite all the red flags, Suranne considers whether or not his intentions are genuine or if she’s simply another name on his list. In the process, she may just uncover the real Kane Richards. But, when it comes down to it, the real Kane Richards may not want to be found. Filled with raw emotion, Kane Richards Must Die explores relationships, trust, love, and what can happen when life takes an unexpected turn.

 Shanice Williams graduated from high school in England at the age of sixteen and went on to college where she is currently studying English literature, politics, and sociology. Playing the piano and writing are some of her hobbies. Her accomplishments have included penning a published poem and becoming a debut author when she signed her first publishing contract for Kane Richards Must Die on her eighteenth birthday. She currently resides in South London with her family. 

You can find Shanice Williams on her Site / Facebook / GoodReads

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