Blog Tour: The Unseemly Education of Anne Merchant by Joanna Wiebe
Today I have author Joanne Weibe stopping by to talk about her new book The Unseemly Education of Anne Merchant! Plus, there is an awesome giveaway you should check out too!
After her mothers death, 16-year-old art prodigy Anne Merchant moves from sunny California to the cold woodlands of Wormwood Island, Maine for what is supposed to be a fresh start. She is the newest student of Cania Christy, an elite boarding school that is as filled with secrets as it is with the worldâ€™s most privilegedand competitive teens.
From the first day of school, Anne finds herself thrust into the Big V competition, an intense race to the top of the class. With enviable talents, she quickly becomes the enemy of every junior seeking the Big V especially Harper, the presumed frontrunner.
Like every student, she is assigned a guardian, and a unique mission. Annes assignment is to look deeper. Anne is determined to succeed, and wonâ€™t let anything not even her distractingly beautiful neighbor Ben get in the way. But the deeper she looks the more questions arise, and the more she is forced to reexamine all of her assumptions about the school, her classmates and even herself.
As layers of secrecy deepen, Anne leans on the friendship of Molly, a lifelong islander, and Pilot, the only junior not competing for the Big V, to make sense of this cloak-and-dagger world. But when people start disappearing, Anne uncovers a stunning truth that she must face head on before she and everyone she loves is destroyed by it.
Anne Merchant and the Students of Cania Christy, as I See Them
A flight attendant inspired Anne Merchant.
I was flying from San Francisco to Seattle, and I sat in the emergency row – which is the poor man’s first class – where flight attendants spend extra time explaining how you’re supposed to save the day should the plane go down. I was talking one-on-one with this particular flight attendant, who was one of those pretty-because-she’s-so-different-looking girls, and I was thinking the whole time that this plane had better not go down ‘cos I’ve been mentally sketching her eyebrows, nose and hair instead of listening to her.
Never let a writer sit in the emergency row.
And never let a writer watch you intently – or you’ll end up in a book.
I don’t have a photo of that flight attendant – that would be creepy – but I have kept a little Pinterest page of real people (usually celebrities) who look like I’ve imagined the kids of Cania Christy to look. If you’ve read The Unseemly Education of Anne Merchant, which hit bookstores this week, check these photos out to see if they’re as you imagined…
Five foot ten and hardly a stick, Anne has big blonde hair and one incisor that sticks out too much. She’s flawed, which is one of many things that separates her from the others at Cania Christy. AnnaSophia Robb’s hair is totally as I imagine Anne’s:
The Model UN from Hell
Comprised of four impossibly pretty juniors, the Model UN from Hell, as Pilot Stone calls them, is blessed with wealth and beauty but cursed with misfortune: they all rather unluckily find themselves at Cania Christy, and they’ve all been tasked with living up to the same unseemly standard.
Here they are, from left to right: Harper, Plum, Agniezska and Tallulah.
Although not a student of Cania Christy, Molly lives on Wormwood Island and is Anne’s only true friend. She’s shorter than Anne, but she’s got a toughness about her that Anne admires. I definitely see fellow Canuck Ellen Page as Molly:
Pilot’s stocky, with cropped dark hair and dark eyes that twinkle – normally because he’s cooking up a scheme or weaving a destructive lie. If his hair were shorter, Zayn Malik of One Direction could totally pass for Pilot:
Finally, Mr. Ebenezer Zin, the aloof and far-too-perfect boy Anne can’t believe she’s good enough to attract. He’s got beautiful green eyes and a rather magic touch. If there’s one celebrity picture-perfect enough to be Ben, it’s Hayden Christenson:
As you’d expected? Totally different? …Haven’t read the book yet so you can’t say either way? Well, that’s how I see the characters in this story – but I hope you let them into your minds and experience them in your own way.
You can read more about Anne, the Model UN from Hell, Ben, Molly and Pilot by picking up a copy of The Unseemly Education of Anne Merchant, written by Joanna Wiebe and published by BenBella Books, in bookstores and online now. Amy Plum called the novel “deliciously dark”, and VOYA said it’s great for fans of Anna Dressed in Blood.
Visit Joanna at www.joannawiebefiction.com and follow her on Twitter or Goodreads.