Author Interview

Author Interview: Maggie Stiefvater

I’m a huge fan of Maggie’s books so I was ecstatic, when she agreed to do an interview with me. If you haven’t read Maggie’s books; Lament, Ballad & Shiver, I highly recommend that you do! Promise you won’t be disappointed! Here’s a short interview I conducted with Maggie Stiefvater.

Faeries & werewolves. Are there any other supernatural creatures you’re planning on writing about?

Well, I have a monster book lined up next. Well, they are kind of monsters. Sexy, hungry monster types. And the novel lined up after that doesn’t really have supernatural creatures in it, although it is supernatural. And then I’m afraid I’m back to faeries again. I don’t think I’ll go back to werewolves, though. I think the SHIVER series was it for me and werewolves.

Was the publishing process for Shiver different than for Lament? If yes, how so?

Oh, absolutely. The process for Lament was very long and drawn out, with a lot of revising for one helpful editor — who ended up being my first editor — who bought Lament on three revised chapters and watched me write the rest of the novel for him. It was all very unorthodox. With Shiver, I got an agent, finished the book, and then she sold it at auction to a handful of competing houses. While the auction bit is not usual for most books, the rest of it was all quite normal. As in I did all the proper steps: 1) get an agent 2) write a whole novel 3) send whole novel to publishers. Even if I did them in a sort of backward order. Since then I’ve sold all my novels on synopses or bare promises of what they might be. It’s rather nice. I love my publisher.

Which series is your favorite to write?

Oh, hey now. Don’t pick favorites amongst your children, or they’ll smother you in your sleep. Both of the series are satisfying in their own way. The Shiver series is hard work — the devil is in the details, the gestures, the tiny, subtle movements of the plot. The Faerie books are bigger, louder, faster, more stylized. They are my popcorn after the grueling work of Shiver.

What’s the most interesting comment you have received about your books?

One girl told me she left her emotionally abusive boyfriend after reading Shiver, because she had decided that she wanted to wait for a guy who would respect her for who she was. That was pretty awesome.

If you could travel back in time for one year, what time and place would you choose? And if you could only take 3 things with you, what would they be?

Wow, for one year? Okay, I’ll play. 9th century England or Wales, and I’d take a) camera b) my favorite paring knife and c) three courses of antibiotics. Hey, semper fi.

Describe your writing in three words.
Angsty idealistic splatschmear

You didn’t say they had to be three real words. I needed something to encompass my poetic use of blood and injury for my emotastic purposes.

What are you working on now?

The third and final book in the Shiver trilogy. It ought to be done by Christmas Eve. At least, that’s the plan.

Thanks so much for having me.


Book Review

Night Runner by Max Turner

Night Runner by Max Turner

Release Date: Septmeber 1, 2009
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Age Group: Young Adult, Middle Grade
Pages: 272
From: publisher
Interest: n/a

For Zack Thomson, living in the Nicholls Ward isn’t so bad. After his parents died, he developed strange and severe allergies, and the mental institution was the only place where he could be properly looked after. As strange as it was, it was home. He could watch as much television as he wanted; his best friend Charlie visited him often enough; and Nurse Ophelia–the prettiest no-nonsense nurse ever–sometimes took him bowling. Of course, that didn’t mean he had it easy. His allergies restricted his diet to strawberry smoothies, and being the only kid at the hospital could get lonely. But it never once crossed Zack’s mind to leave…until the night someone crashed through the front doors and told him to run. Now he’s on a race for answers–about his past, his parents, and his strange sickness–even as every step takes him closer to the darkest of truths.

Three words; adventure, betrayal & surprising

Night Runner is a full on high speed action, adventure, thriller! Excellent story and an even more so enjoyable male MC. The whole initial set-up is very unique. Living in a mental institution because of his special “needs.” Very different!

The plot is really action packed and fast paced. There are a few slower moments too, but that’s expected when an author is setting up a story. From what I can understand this is the first of a series, and it reads that way. Not that, that is necessarily a bad thing, but there is a lot of back-story that you need to know about. And I’ m sure it is needed for future installments.

The characters seemed a little two dimensional to me, but I think that may have had to again, with having this novel be so plot driven instead of character driven.

Overall, this was a really fun read. Definitely recommended it to all those male readers out there.



Happy Birthday X!

This is totally un-book related. But it’s a big deal to me!

If you’ve been to my blog before you know how much I love my X. If you are new to the blog, let me introduce you to someone I love, just as much and maybe a little bit more, than my books. My Rotten-weiler, Xander. Today, he turns three years old. I took this picture of him last night, so he’s still technically two in it, but you get the idea. I also used the “red-eye” remover for pooches… and now his eyes are kinda freaking me out, but that’s okay. He still looks cute!


Book Review

Betraying Season by Marissa Doyle

Betraying Season by Marissa Doyle

Release Date: September 29, 2009
Publisher: Henry Holt
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 352
From: publisher
Interest: series
Other Titles in the Series: Bewitching Season

Penelope Leland has come to Ireland to study magic and prove to herself that she is as good a witch as her twin sister Persy. But when Niall Keating begins to pay her court, she can’t help being distracted from her studies. Especially when she learns that the handsome young nobleman is reputedly an illegitimate cousin of the new young Queen Victoria, her friend and idol, whom her sister saved from an ambitious wizard’s control spell the year before.

Niall Keating has strict orders from his sorceress mother Lady Keating: to make young Miss Leland fall in love with him so that she can be convinced to use her magical powers to help reconcile him to his true father, the Duke of Cumberland, Queen Victoria’s uncle. Niall is delighted to comply until he discovers his mother’s true aim: to assassinate Queen Victoria by magic and put Niall’s father on the throne of England.

Three words: magical, steamy & bewitching…. (ha!)

Betraying Season is more of a companion novel than a sequel to Bewitching Season, you will understand the story a little more, but it’s not really required to read Bewitching Season first, but I’d recommend to.

We don’t get to see much of Miss Penelope Leland in Bewitching Season, so it was nice to get some insight into the other sister. There is a similar theme to this novel as with it’s predecessor, the ultimate goal is to save the queen from impending doom! But it definitely takes on a new light in this novel!

I loved the historical details and the added Irish mythology. Like with Bewitching Season, magic may be the primary component, but the dialogue and cultural references allow the story to maintain it’s historical appeal. Engaging plot, interesting characters, will keep you flipping the pages! I love reading about these girls!

However, my favorite character from Betraying Season, Charles, was sorely missed!


Book Review

Nothing but Ghosts by Beth Kephart

Nothing but Ghosts by Beth Kephart

Release Date: June 23, 2009
Publisher: HarperTeen
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 288
From: author
Interest: author

Ever since her mother passed away, Katie’s been alone in her too-big house with her genius dad, who restores old paintings for a living. Katie takes a summer job at a garden estate where, with the help of two brothers and a glamorous librarian, she soon becomes embroiled in decoding a mystery. There are secrets and shadows at the heart of Nothing But Ghosts, symbols hidden in a time-darkened painting, and surprises behind a locked bedroom door. But most of all, this is a love story– the story of a girl who learns about love while also learning to live with her own ghosts.

Three words; evocative, notable & resolution.

This is a difficult review for me to write. I enjoyed reading the story, but it just fell a little flat for me. I can’t decide how exactly I feel about it, and that doesn’t happen to me very often.

It was beautifully written, very lyrical, but the plot was too slow moving for me. I didn’t feel any real connection with the characters, as much as I wanted to. I did however, love the mystery aspect of the story, slowly piecing together bit by bit.

Despite my hesitations, I do recommend it.

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