When Harper Teen first announced Victoria Aveyard's Red Queen, I knew it was a book I had to have. With its exciting fantasy premise involving magic, secrets and rebellion, what's not to love? Am I right? And then a few weeks ago, they revealed the cover and I had a fanboy moment that involved lots of gushing and flailing. So let's take a look!
While we all love a strong hero, we love a strong heroine even more. Sadly, strong heroines aren't always as easy to find despite being incredibly important. Today, in celebration of her newest novel, The Kiss of Deception, YA author Mary E. Pearson shares her thoughts on the importance of writing strong women. Take a look:
Women are strong.
Damn strong. And clever. And brave. And resourceful. Their strengths are vast and varied and they use them every day to survive and make our world better — and their strength can be different from men’s in a myriad of ways. We aren’t just rewriting a male hero in a dress. It’s important to celebrate a woman’s strengths without a man’s strengths even coming into the equation. I think very often we speak about women in a terminology that has grown from a male centric viewpoint. The weaker sex? Not by a long shot.
Sometimes I think this is a no-brainer. We all know this by now, right? Maybe not. I think we’re still working out the finer points of honoring the female experience, voice and perspective in our literature and in the world at large.
Retelling a classic fairy tale can be rather daunting, especially when it's a tale as timeless and beloved as Cinderella. But Tracy Barrett knocked her retelling out of the park with The Stepsister's Tale, an enchanting story that takes a closer look at the stepsisters' side of Cinderella's story. Today, Tracy shares her thoughts on her new book and what she did in order to make her retelling as compelling as possible.
Margaret Stohl is no stranger to the YA spotlight. In addition to co-authoring the bestselling Beautiful Creatures series and the new spin-off series, Dangerous Creatures, Margaret has also struck out on her own with her Icons series. The second in the series, Idols, releases today and to celebrate, we have an exclusive Q&A with Margaret. Take a look:
Describe Idols in five words.
Heart-bruising-pounding-breaking. Aliens. Elephants. Vision-quest. Thailand.
What can readers expect to learn in the book?
Readers will learn that every love story is also a hate story and vice versa. So I guess to look for the one in the other. Readers will learn to start plotting their trips to Thailand immediately, and I hope going to volunteer in elephant preserves. Learning to give an elephant a bath was one of the most exquisite moments of my life. And I hope readers will learn that emotional relationships change and grow, just like characters and in fact people. We can't help it, none of us.
Which character has surprised you the most over the course of writing the series?
Back in May, while we partied it up at the 2014 RT Booklovers Convention, we sat down with bestselling author Suzanne Brockmann and her daughter, Melanie Brockmann, for an interview in which the Brockmann's discussed their upcoming YA novel, Night Sky. This series opener is set in the same futuristic world as Suzanne's Born to Darkness. Watch the video below to hear Suzanne and Melanie talk about what it's like writing together, their creative processes and what readers can expect to see in the new series. Take a look:
Many readers know the power couples of literary fiction — Jonathan Safran Foer and Nicole Krauss (who, technically, aren’t anymore after they recently revealed their split), Zadie Smith and Nick Laird, Michael Chabon and Ayelet Waldman — but what about genre fiction? There’s plenty of romance in romance … and urban fantasy, science fiction and YA! Below are some genre fiction power couples who just ooze mushy love.
Ilona and Gordon Andrews
The first genre fiction power couple that comes to mind is, of course, Ilona Andrews — the writing team of Ilona and Gordon Andrews. Ilona immigrated to the U.S. from Russia and met Gordon (whose real name is Andrew Gordon, fun fact), and together they wrote Magic Bites. Their Kate Daniels series is extraordinarily popular and the two have such a fun, playful dynamic in person. I’ve seen them on several panels at RT Con, and they’re absolutely delightful.
Tahereh Mafi and Ransom Riggs
A few weeks ago, Hulu and WIGS announced their plans to release the passed over pilot for Delirium, which is based on Lauren Oliver’s bestselling book of the same name, online for a limited time. Book fans went crazy in anticipation and on Friday, the world was finally able to see Oliver’s beloved book come to life. And as major fans of the book, RT’s Assistant Web Editor DJ and reviewer Christin had high expectations, and today, they share their post-viewing thoughts. Warning: spoilers ahead!
DJ: What I love most about the pilot is that, for the most part, it captures the feel and tone of the book. There’s a creepy sterility to the world and the characters that really drives home the idea that a central emotion - in this case, love - is absent. In particular, Senator Hargrove, played by Michael Michele, seemed the most “cured” and I really enjoyed her scenes.
Bad kisses can be just as memorable as great ones, and YA author Rachael Allen has experienced both! Her debut, 17 First Kisses, follows Claire as she sets out to find a decent boyfriend after one too many failed attempts and first kisses. But when she and her best friend fall for the same guy, Claire must decide to save her friendship or chase her chance at true love. Today, Rachael dishes on her best and worst kisses! Take a look:
My boyfriend and I had just broken up. I was at a party. And there was this guy.
He had the most gorgeous, powerful brown eyes. Electric eyes. They reeled me over. We talked for a while, and then the rushing sensation in my stomach told me we were going to kiss. My first kiss in three years that wasn’t with my boyfriend. My lips went warm with anticipation.
And then, he kissed me.
I waited for fireworks, but instead felt ... his tongue. And it was huge. No, seriously, it was mammoth. It took up almost my entire mouth, until it was practically gagging me.
Fans went crazy when Hulu and WIGS announced their plans to make the unaired pilot for Delirium, based on Lauren Oliver's bestselling novel of the same name, available for streaming. And when the pilot went live last Friday, everybody settled in to see if their expectations were met. I'll be sharing my thoughts on it later this week with Web Reviewer Christin, but I was dying to know what Lauren thought. Today, we have an exclusive interview with her where she discusses the hotness of Emma Roberts and Daren Kagasoff, the setting and her favorite part! Take a look:
There's no denying that bad boys are irresistible, even to those of us who "know better" than to get involved with one. With their devilish charms and looks, they pull us in and we fall without hesitation. But why? New Adult author Sybil Bartel knows a thing or two about bad boys, especially since her latest book, No Apologies, stars Graham Allen, a bad boy through and through. We tasked Sybil with figuring out why readers love bad boys so much. Here's what she had to say:
Why are these heroes so appealing?
It’s that moment. That moment when your heart is racing, your breath is ragged and you can’t think one second beyond the page in front of you. He’s broken and damaged and oh so hot, he makes your knees weak. You’re questioning your sanity, you’re biting your lip and then you do what you know you never should. You give your heart away.
Why? Because you can’t resist. He’s just. That. Bad. Tall and muscular, demanding and unattainable, he’ll never apologize for his behavior and he’ll leave you with nothing — nothing except the desire for more.
We love our literary bad boys.