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Author News & Interviews

Author Talk: Gabrielle Zevin, author of The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

Apr 3, 2014

Gabrielle Zevin is the author of award-winning books for young adults, including MEMOIRS OF A TEENAGE AMNESIAC and ELSEWHERE. Her latest novel for adults, THE STORIED LIFE OF A.J. FIKRY, is about a bookseller and collector who, after a series of tragic and disappointing events, is slowly but surely isolating himself from all the people around him. But when a mysterious package appears at his bookstore, it gives A.J. the opportunity to make his life over and the ability to see everything anew.

In this interview that originated from Bookselling This Week (a dedicated section of BookWeb.org), Zevin talks about how this book was inspired by the “trauma of getting published at 27,” and how the publishing world is different in real life than it appears in the movies (hint: There’s a way larger cast of supporting characters). She also discusses why bookstores are so beloved, why she chose to feature short stories in her novel, how risky it was to write a book about the book community --- and how lucky she feels to have its support.

Interview: David Baldacci, author of The Finisher

Mar 28, 2014

You may have seen David Baldacci's name on your parents' bookshelves before --- he's written 27 novels for adults, and there are more than 110 million copies of his books in print worldwide! We're happy to report, though, that his latest endeavor --- THE FINISHER --- belongs squarely in the YA section of your local library. This fantasy follows Vega Jane, a girl who lives in Wormwood. No one ever leaves Wormwood --- the surrounding forest, the Quag, is filled with terrifying beasts and bloodthirsty Outliers. But when her friend Quentin flees to the Quag, Vega Jane knows that something isn't as it seems --- and she follows Quentin's trail of clues to uncover the deep, dark secrets about her society. In this interview, David tells us about his writing process, the mythological creatures that inspired some of the monsters in the book and why he chose to write from a female perspective.  


Interview: Bree Despain, author of Into the Dark Book #1: The Shadow Prince

Mar 5, 2014

We all know the story Persephone --- Hades captured the young goddess and brought her to be the queen of the underworld, much to her mother Demeter's dismay.  Along with a Death Cab for Cutie song, Bree Despain used this famous myth as the inspiration for THE SHADOW PRINCE, where young Haden is sent to bring Daphne, an aspiring singer at a California private school, back to the underworld to help continue the line of Hades, who was killed in the Thousand Year War with the Skylords. But when Haden and Daphne develop feelings for one another, they might not only change their own destinies, but the destinies of the entire universe. In this interview, Bree explains why the word "darkness" is in both of her series titles, advice for aspiring writers and her lack of musical talent.


Interview: Elizabeth Scott, author of Heartbeat

Mar 3, 2014

Some young adult authors have dreamed of being writers their whole lives. Not Elizabeth Scott --- she was an editor, an office manager, sold pantyhose and burned CDs for a dot.com company --- and only started her first novel as part of a dare! We're certainly glad she did though --- her 12 young adult novels are moving, funny, dark and everything in between. In this interview, Elizabeth talks about her latest book, HEARTBEAT, telling us about her favorite character from the book, her writing process and the research that went into the book (hint: having a lawyer for a husband definitely helped!).


Interview: Cynthia Leitich Smith, author of FERAL CURSE

Feb 11, 2014

The second book in the Feral series, FERAL CURSE has been a long time in the making. Secondary characters from Cynthia Leitich Smith's earlier series, Tantalize, are thrust into the spotlight, Yoshi the werecat from FERAL NIGHTS plays a central (and steamy) role and a new werecat, Kayla finds herself in the middle of a disaster when a cursed carousel sends werepeople of all sorts to her small town of Pine Ridge, Texas. So what's it like to write a book when some characters have been lurking in Cynthia's head for 14 years, and others are brand new? What's the difference between writing a series and writing a stand-alone book? Cynthia answers these questions and more --- including how she decides which animal each shape-shifter turns into, the real-life inspiration for Pine Ridge and what readers can expect from the next Feral book --- in the exclusive interview, below. Read on!