Category Archives: Author Interview

Author Interview with Clare B. Dunkle

“Former librarian Clare B. Dunkle is a writer worth watching. Gifted with the ability to create unique historical fantasy novels with a narrative pull like a Hoover, she wins fanatically dedicated readers right and left.”—Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

Today I have the pleasure of interviewing with Clare B. Dunkle, author of serveral books including BY THESE TEN BONES. Besides this recent re-release Clare has also written THE HOLLOW KINGDOM TRILOGY, THE SKY INSIDE, THE WALLS HAVE EYES and recently THE HOUSE OF DEAD MAIDS. So, Please sit back and relax and join for a spell.
RR: Upon reading about your background I noted that you lived in Europe for several years. Did that experience influence your writing?
CBD: Oh, yes, tremendously. When we arrived in Germany, I hadn’t written a word of fiction since seventh grade creative writing class. When we came home seven years later, Holt had already published my first four novels. I think it was partly the isolation that did it: I honestly didn’t have a lot else to do with my time. But it was also that feeling of being at the heart of it all. I’d read folktales and history about Europe since childhood. Now, here I was, driving through dark German forests that looked like they could hold a gingerbread house or two and walking through crypts beneath the great cathedrals of Europe. The ancient buildings and landscape there really got into my blood and strongly influenced books like BY THESE TEN BONES.

RR: BY THESE TEN BONES was originally released in 2005 before the recent craze of werewolves that have now became mainstream in today’s YA literature. How do you feel about that?
CBD: Well, I’m delighted that it’s encouraged my publishing house to release a paperback edition. BY THESE TEN BONES is a favorite of mine. And I’m glad YA werewolves are getting their time in the sun—or, rather, moon. I prefer them to vampires.

RR: What is your book BY THESE TEN BONES about?
CBD: The story is set in the medieval Highlands of Scotland, a time and place when everyone believed in werewolves and knew to kill them on sight. Maddie, the town weaver’s daughter, becomes interested in a reclusive young woodcarver named Paul who comes to their town, but she can’t persuade him to speak to her. When a hideous creature almost kills the carver, Maddie becomes entangled in a life-or-death secret that could destroy her entire town.

RR: What kind of research did you have to prepare for BY THESE TEN BONES?
CBD: I was obsessive about my research for this book. Several of my ancestral lines are Gaelic, and my maiden name is Scottish, so I didn’t just want to stick characters in plaid and give them funny accents. I did quite a bit of nonfiction reading, took the family on a long Highland road trip with stops at all the living history museums we could find, and finally invited one of the world’s foremost experts on the medieval Highlands, Mr. R. Ross Noble, to read the manuscript and give me his comments.
It was an honor to work with Mr. Noble on the book. At the time, he was just retiring after twenty-five years of curating the Highland Folk Museum. Now he’s helping out UNESCO as a member of the Scotland Committee. I prepared him a special annotated copy of the manuscript, with the story in one column and my historical research pertaining to the text in another. He read the manuscript several times and was very supportive and helpful.

RR. Who was your favorite character in BY THESE TEN BONES and why?
CBD: Wow, that’s a hard question. I don’t think I can choose between Maddie and Paul. I love Maddie’s enthusiasm and optimism. It takes a lot to slow her down. But Paul has been through so much, and he feels things so deeply. Really, they’re so sweet together that I love them both.

RR: What do you want your readers to take away from your book?
CBD: You know, I never do write a book to try to get readers to take away a certain message. I feel strongly that that’s not what fiction should be about. Fiction is a chance for readers to have a new experience—a safe, risk-free experience—and I do hope that each reader takes away from my books something of value to him or her. But since each person’s experience coming into the story is different, I can’t predict what that person’s experience will be on the other side of the story either, and I think that’s as it should be.

RR: What was your favorite book that you read as a teen and why?
CBD: Sad to say, I read fewer books as a teen than I’ve done at any other stage of my life. School and university were so demanding! Fortunately, the books that were assigned in class were very worthwhile. Two books in particular have stayed with me as favorites, although you’ll wonder why because both of them were grim. The first was ONE DAY IN THE LIFE OF IVAN DENISOVICH, by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. That’s a fictionalized account of exactly what the title states: one day in the life of a prisoner in Stalin’s gulags. It’s surprisingly cheerful—just business as usual. And it’s so real. The first time I read it, I couldn’t put it down; I especially couldn’t stop to eat because that seemed like an insult to the prisoners. I don’t know how they had the strength to keep going. I know I wouldn’t have.
The other book is ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT, by Erich Maria Remarque. It’s about life in the trenches in World War I, and again, it’s just so real. It’s amazing how humans can adjust and keep going in the middle of carnage and chaos. It’s almost unbelievable, really.

RR: What are you in the process of writing next?
CBD: My daughter and I have just completed a revision of her anorexia memoir, VANISHING GIRL. We’ve gone through trauma and heartache together, and I’m very proud of her for speaking out.

RR: What is on your nightstand now?
CBD: P.T BARNAM: AMERICA’S GREATEST SHOWMAN, by Philip B. Kunhardt, Jr., et al. It’s a fascinating read; that’s a slice of Americana I had no inkling of. Also THE GREAT CIRCUS TRAIN WRECK OF 1918, by Richard M. Lytle. It sounds like a joke, but what a tragedy! Eighty-six people were killed.

RR: With all the YA novels that are coming out this year, besides BY THESE TEN BONES, what are you most eager to read?
CBD: I can’t wait for my friend Jennifer Ziegler’s new novel, SASS & SERENDIPITY. It’ll be out in July from Delacorte, and so far I haven’t been able to wheedle a galley out of her.

RR: What is the best way for a reader to find you i.e. facebook/twitter/blog?
CBD: I am on Facebook, so that’s a good way to reach me. Also, I run my own website,, and readers can find a web form there if they want to ask questions. I’ve posted photos there from my Highlands trip and other background information about BY THESE TEN BONES, as well as information about my other books.

RR: Thank you, for this great interview and I hope to see you again. It has been a pleasure as always.
CBD: Thank you for having me! It’s been great fun.

If you liked this interview and want to find out more about Clare please follow her to TEMPTING PERSEPHONE on Thursday. BY THESE TEN BONES by Clare B. Dunkle
February 15, 2011

A mysterious young man has come to a small Highland town. His talent for wood carving soon wins the admiration of Maddie, the weaver’s daughter. Fascinated by the silent carver, she sets out to gain his trust. But there is an evil presence in the carver’s life that cannot be controlled, and Maddie watches her town fall under a shadow. One by one, people begin to die. Caught in the middle, Maddie must decide what matters most to her—and what price she is willing to pay to keep it.


>Author Interview and Contest with Suzanne Selfors

> Today I have the pleasure of interviewing Susanne Selfors, author of several YA and middle grade books. Her newest Young Adult book, MAD LOVE recently hit the book shelves and I am happy to inform you that I have an autographed copy to give away. So, sit back relax and take some time to get to know about MAD LOVE and it’s author. Then enter my contest to win a signed copy of MAD LOVE.

RR: Hello Suzanne, and thank you for this interview. Last year I read COFFEHOUSE ANGEL and this year you have a new novel, MAD LOVE for YA readers to enjoy. Can you tell me what this new book is about?
SS: It’s a dark romantic comedy about a teen girl named Alice Amorous whose mother is a famous romance writer. When her mother is secretly hospitalized for bi-polar disorder, Alice tries to write her mom’s next romance novel, with the unsolicited help of a weird boy who claims to be Cupid. That’s the plot in a nutshell. But what it’s also about is Love in all its shapes and sizes.

RR: MAD LOVE is a story that is centered on Mental Illness i.e. Biopolar Disorder . What inspired you to write this particular story?
SS: Well, I wouldn’t say that it’s “centered” on mental illness. This is not an issues book. Bipolar disorder just happens to be one of the things that is complicating Alice’s life. I have always been intrigued by manic and depressive behavior, having suffered from a bout of severe depression when I was in college and having grown up with a father who was very manic and who medicated with alcohol.

RR: Are you a fan of clam juice? and what made you decide that it was the drink of choice for your storyline?
SS: I don’t know why I chose it. Just seemed weird.

RR: What kind of research did you have to prepare for MAD LOVE?
SS: I went back and read all I could about Cupid and Psyche. I also read a lot about bipolar disorder. When I wrote the first draft I was still calling it manic-depression, but that’s the old term.

RR. Who was your favorite character in MAD LOVE and why?
SS:I often get attached to my secondary characters. I really like Archibald, the gay roommate. He’s such a kind soul and he’s the one who reminds Alice that we should never place more value on what other people think of us than on what we think of ourselves.

RR: What do you want your readers to take away from your book?
SS: Firstly, I hope they were entertained. That’s the most important thing to me. I want my books to help people escape for a few hours, maybe laugh a little, enjoy the time. If there’s a message drifting amongst the chapters it’s this: That love in all its colors is always swirling around you, you just have to open your heart to it.

RR: What are you in the process of writing next?
SS:My next kids’ book comes out in May and its called Smells Like Treasure. And I’m finishing up the first draft of my next YA book, out in 2012. It’s a fairy tale.
RR: What is on your nightstand now?
SS:I’m reading a Finnish book called Year of the Hare.
RR: What is the best way for a reader to find you i.e. facebook/twitter/blog?
SS:Best way is through my website, I love getting reader letters and try to answer each one. I’m on facebook too.

RR: Thank you, for this great interview and I hope to see you again. It has been a pleasure as always.
SS:You’re welcome! Thank you!
CONTEST: Win a signed Hard Cover copy of MAD LOVE by Suzanne Selfors
This contest is open to the US entrants only and you must be ove 13 years of age with permission from your parents to receive contest prizes in the mail. All you have to do is fill out the contest form HERE. This contest is open until February 28th, 2011. Midnight PST.

>Author Interview and More with RON KOERTGE


Hello everyone, today I have a special treat. An interview with author RON KOERTGE. Ron has been great in granting me an interview and for writing a cute and quirky story written in poetic verse.

RR: Hello Ron, and welcome to The Ravenous Reader blog. I hope that you enjoy your stay while I ask you a few questions 🙂

RR: Can you tell us about your upcoming book, Shakespeare makes the Playoffs?

RK: It’s a sequel to Shakespeare Bats Cleanup. Both are good-natured books for middle-grade/young adult readers. The hero of both is a fourteen-year old boy who loves poetry and baseball. Kevin keeps his affection for poetry secret (you know how boys are!) but he can’t help but write poems and he’s outed but in a good-natured way. He’s such a good first baseman that his pals forgive him for being a writer. In Shakespeare Makes the Playoffs, he and a cute girl named Amy agree to try almost all the forms of poetry like sonnets and sestinas. Of course, Kevin already has a girlfriend who doesn’t like poetry all that much. So you can see there’s trouble brewing.
RR: What is your favorite line from your novels?

RK: In a novel of mine named Strays, the hero–a troubled kid brand new to the foster care system–is on a commuter train in Pasadena. There’s a blind guy with a guide dog sitting close to him, and my narrator starts talking to the dog and the dog answers! That whole conversation is one of my faves.

RR: Do you have any other YA books in the works?

RK: I’ve got another sequel working. It’s the second volume of Stoner & Spaz, a rough-around-the-edges novel about a boy with cerebral palsy and a girl who likes to smoke marijuana. An unlikely pair, for sure, but older kids love the book and it won the P.E.N. prize. Let’s hope for more good luck for the sequel!
RR: What book is on your nightstand now?
RK: A novel called The Master. It’s about Henry James. And it’s written like Henry James writes. I like to read hard stuff that’s not like anything I’d ever write.

RR: What book has changed your life?
RK: I have to say Catcher in the Rye. I was a fifteen-year-old boy in 1955, and I was feeling really out of place in my little hometown of Collinsville, Illinois. Holden swore a lot (I did and still do), was confused (I was and still am), and the novel made me laugh. I love to laugh and like to crack my friends up.
RR: Had you always wanted to be a writer?
RK:Probably. I just didn’t know it for quite awhile. My parents were Depression-era people, so I was brought up to work hard and make a living. Could I do that as a writer? I stumbled into teaching, discovered I was pretty good at it, and did it for thirty-seven years. And I was able to write, too.
RR: What do you do for inspiration?
RK: I don’t believe in inspiration. I’m a butt-in-the-chair guy. So I put it there every day, seven days a week, holidays included. I don’t always write well, but I always write something.
RR: What do you enjoy the most about the writing process?
RK: I like going to work every day. My wife and I have a cat (Buddy the Poetry Cat. There’s a picture of him on the Facebook page). When my wife goes off to the city college at 7:30 or so (she’s a counselor there), Buddy and I go upstairs to the studio, and we see what the Muses have in mind for us.
RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?
RK: I have a Facebook page, but visit it by searching for “Shakespeare makes the Playoffs” and not “Ron Koertge.” (There seems
to be another version of me in Texas.) Also Candlewick Press has all their authors at the Candlewick site, so I’m there, too.

RR: Thank you for visiting and granting me an interview. It has been a pleasure.
RK: For me, too. Thanks
REVIEW: Shakespeare Makes the Playoffs YYY
Shakespeare Makes the Playoffs is a book written in poetic verse it’s the sequel to Shakespeare Bats Cleanup a story about a fourteen year old boy named Kevin who is ill and cannot play baseball as he wants to and decides to write about his life experiences through many forms of poetry. In Shakespeare Makes the Playoffs Kevin returns, playing on the baseball team while continuing his attempts at writing poetry. He is still adjusting to life without his mother, as is his father who is starting to date again. Throughout all this change Kevin is struggling with his feelings between the two girls in his life, one being his cute girlfriend and the other the new girl that seems to understand the burgeoning poet in his soul.
I adored the voice of a fourteen year old boy demonstrated through Kevin’s poetry. Some moments displayed in his life are poignant and beautiful, while other pieces feel exactly like a young boy attempting to dive into the world of poetry. There is a story being told through these poems that is a delight to read and Ron Koertge did an amazing job of making this story shine.

>Author Interview with Linda Kage


Today I have the honor of interviewing Linda Kage, author of The Stillburrow Crush. Her book will be available on February 26th, 2010. In the mean time sit back get to know this great author a little better 🙂

RR: Hello Linda, and welcome to The Ravenous Reader blog. I hope that you enjoy your stay while I ask you a few questions
:)Thank you! It’s an honor to be here. I’m enjoying myself already, and we haven’t even gotten to the good stuff yet!

RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?
You can find me all over the internet! But the best place to start is my website, which is

From there, you can find links to my:email :
Blog –
MySpace –
Facebook –
Twitter –
YouTube –
Shelfari –
Book Blogs Ning –
And of course you can find my book at The Wild Rose Press Website :

RR: Can you tell us about your upcoming book, The Stillburrow Crush?
Sure. It’s about sixteen-year-old Carrie Paxton who grows a crush on—go figure—the football quarterback, Luke Carter. But she’s not too popular, and, well, he is. She doesn’t want to be so predictable as to fall for the best-looking, most popular super jock in the entire school, but when she interviews him for the school paper, she’s surprised to realize he’s not just a pretty face. What’s even more shocking is that he seems to like her in return. But coming from different social circles makes their hooking up feel like the impossible, and just when Carrie thinks she and Luke might actually make it, drama in her brother’s life interferes with everything.

RR: What is your favorite line from The Stillburrow Crush?
“Are you blushing? … You are. Oh, this is precious. I’m making Luke Carter blush.”
RR: Do you have any other YA books in the works?
I have a couple ideas for about three YA books right now, but I’ve been focusing on adult contemporary romance lately, so my YAs have been on the back burner.

RR: What book is on your nightstand now?
I have a regency romance on my nightstand right now, called “The Truth about Lord Stoneville” by Sabrina Jeffires.

RR: What book has changed your life?
“Love Beyond Reason” by Sandra Brown. I used to like reading okay when I was younger, but it wasn’t until my freshman year of high school that I became addicted. I listened in on my older sisters praising the works of their favorite romance authors. I asked to read one, so they gave me this book because they claimed it was more mild than some others. Well, I read it and was ruined ever since. Now I’m a complete romance junkie…just gotta have that happy ending.

RR: Had you always wanted to be a writer?
Yep, since the first grade anyway. Before that, not so much!

RR: What do you do for inspiration?
I usually don’t have to go out looking for story inspiration; ideas are EVERYWHERE…in things people say, stories they tell, articles in newspapers, bad endings in movies, interesting sights out in the world…I mean everywhere. Usually the hard part is which story idea I want to work on next. And if I need inspiration to get into the mood to write, a good walk always seems to clear my head and make my fingers itchy to get back to a keyboard.

RR: I noted on your author bio that you have nine cuckoo clocks, does that make it a bit noisy at home?
Well, we only started with one. Once we got used to that, in came two, and then after a while, there were nine. I think we accumulated them so slowly, we didn’t notice the increased noise. And they never kept the same time, so they didn’t cuckoo all at once. But they would either drive our guests crazy, or totally capture their attention (must’ve been noisy enough for them, I guess). What was most annoying was having the wind them (by pulling down the weights) twice a day, so we only run one now (the eight-day clock, which only has to be wound once a week). The others are pretty much decoration unless guests want to watch them all running…then we’ll get them all going again.

RR: What do you enjoy the most about romance novels?
I absolutley love watching the hero and heroine get together. I’m a sucker for interesting meet scenes, but then I also adore pretty much any dialogue between them. Watching them connect with each other and basically just feeling their love bud and grow is what gets to me every time.

RR: Thank you for visiting and granting me an interview.
It has been a pleasure. Oh, thank you so much for having me here. I had fun; wonderful questions.
Thank you and be sure to check out THE STEELBURROW CRUSH HERE

>Author Interview with Kitty Keswick


Today I have an interview with debut author Kitty Keswick, author of Freaksville. For more information on Kitty and Freaksville check out her website at

Warning: Dating a werewolf can be hazardous to your…heart.

RR: What can you tell us about your new upcoming novel, Freaksville? Here’s the blurb.

A group of teenagers, trapped in a haunted theater on the night of a full moon, find out that ghosts are the least of their worries…Every woman in the Maxwell family has the gift of sight. A talent sixteen-year-old Kasey would gladly give up. All she wants is a normal life. Shopping and talking about boys with her best friend and long-time sidekick, Gillie Godshall, consume her days. Until Kasey has a vision about Josh Johnstone, the foreign exchange student from England. The vision leads her into new realms, a lead in a play, a haunted theater … and into the arms of Josh. Yet, both Kasey and Josh have secrets lurking in dark corners. Can Kasey’s new romance survive FREAKSVILLE?

RR: If you could be one of your characters – Who would you be? And why?

Gillie Godshall, Kasey Maxwell’s best friend. She’s a researcher by nature, and I love that about her. Gillie’s loyal and has hidden strength. She can be a leader or a follower when the situation calls for it. Plus she has an awesome power. But you’ll have to read to the end to find out what it is. Gillie is always prepared for anything…including the paranormal. (Gillie drags around a mongo size bag filled with stuff. You never know when you’ll need a flashlight, a whistle, or lots of flavored lipgloss.)

RR: What’s your favorite genre to read?

I like paranormals and mysteries. Some of my favorite authors are Kim Harrison, Kelley Armstrong, Rachel Caine, Maria V. Snyder, Madelyn Alt, and the list goes on and on. When I’m not writing or editing, I read about five paperbacks a week.

RR: Who or what influences you when you write?

My biggest influence I would say is movies. I’m very visual. I love John Hughes movies from the 80s. Kitty and John sitting in a tree… (Go ahead say it. Get it off your chest!) He wrote The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, Pretty in Pink, Some Kind of Wonderful, and many more. He perfected teen angst.

RR: What do you do on a typical writing day?

I’m a night owl. I tend to do my best writing after midnight. I’ll take notes or do a basic chapter during the day and then fill it out when I’m at my most creative.

RR: When you have writer’s block how do you break free?

If a chapter is giving me problems, I skip it and move on to something. I’ll go watch TV or do something fun to free up my mind.

RR: Can you please give us a sneak peek of your upcoming YA book?

First of all, check out the amazing trailer Madison with M2 Productions created:
And here’s a teaser….

Suddenly the tunnel was shrouded in darkness. The lights had failed. A deep throaty growl vibrated a few yards away.

“Stay still,” I whispered.

This was the end. I wanted to grip Gillie’s hand for comfort. But didn’t want to see my best friend’s last moments in my head. My strange list-making compulsion shoved at my thoughts. I didn’t fight it when my brain filtered through my mental catalog. It helped me process. I knew three things:

That was a real growl.

It sounded hungry.

I was on the menu.

From somewhere on my right, in all the blackness, another wolf howled. Claws scratched the rough cement as the beasts darted towards us. Their heavy panting was as loud as my own. The slight clip-clop of nails scraped on the floor in front of me as this creature stalked forward. The smell of wet dog, raunchy, burned my nose. Hot breath wheezed out a moment before the wolf sprang. I moved forward, like Wonder Woman, only stupider, because I didn’t have a magic lasso or cool boots.

My only thought was save Gillie.


Three things happened at once. I shrieked—an eardrum-bursting scream. The wolf scraped my arm—claws or teeth, I didn’t know which. It burned. Something heavy smashed my attacker. With a gurgle and a thump, the wolf was off me.

RR: How did you come up with the idea for Freaksville?

Everywhere. I keep a dream journal. Also, I get many of my ideas while driving or soaking in the tub. I let my mind zone out. Mostly, the ideas pop into my head. I’m very character driven. Kasey and her BFF Gillie were a lot of fun. I see my characters like a movie, and their energy and friendship were so strong they drove the story. It just sorta spewed out.

RR: Can you please tell us what you have planned next in the series?

Book two Furry & Freaked is my favorite so far. The conflict really stretches Kasey to her limits. She’s growing in her powers and has some very important decisions to make. Plus a few new characters throw a wrench into her life. It’s hard to say without giving away too much. Whereas Freaksville is more about acceptance and being true to yourself (Willie Shakespeare got it right: “To thine own self be true.”), Furry & Freaked is about finding your inner strength and rising to your destiny, the one you choose.

RR: Do you have a favorite character from your book?

Ruby. She’s a minor character in Freaksville, but has a bigger role as the series progresses. I love Ruby’s snark. She tells you how it is and doesn’t sugarcoat things. If you’re acting stupid, she’s blunt and tells you that you’re being an a$$. She has a style all her own and is a true individual. Ruby doesn’t let people influence her. She comes across hard, but really she’s a softy. Once you win Ruby’s friendship, you have it for life…or even the afterlife. I hope to let Ruby have a series of her own someday

RR: What kind of research do you do for your books? Do you enjoy the research process?

I love surfing the web, er, researching. For Freaksville, I even interviewed a couple of firemen for a scene in the book. I spent many years reading ghosts stories and studying Norse mythology, which plays a role in Freaksville. There are many goodies buried underneath the surface of the story—symbols and other things that at first you might not notice. But if you pay attention to them, the story is so much more. Hints of things to come, my friend.

RR: Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?

I work better under deadline. Procrastinator, moi? Perhaps, I’m just an adrenaline junkie and like the rush? But either way, I tend to do my best writing after midnight and in a time crunch.

RR: What would you like to tell your readers?

That they rock! It’s because of readers that I’m able to write. The stories are really for them.

RR: How many novels to do you have planned for your new YA series?

Originally, I had four planned. Presently, I have three Kasey Maxwell novels. I might offshoot with Gillie and Ruby, giving each of them a series that is set in the same world. My editor recently sent me the edits for book two. I’m working on those.

RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?

I’m the co-president of the Class of 2k10. We’re a group of debut MG and YA authors. Our website is You can read a free short story I wrote, My Prom Date’s a Vampire, on my publisher’s website, Hang out with my fellow Wolfy Chick, Judith Graves, and me at our blog: I’m on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and about a bazillion other sites, so feel free to friend me there. Oh, and my website is I love to chat with readers so stop by anytime or email me through my website.

RR: How can readers find out more about you and your book?

My publisher has a pretty nifty page set up at Also, I have a cool author page on the And you can buy the book here.

Thank you for this opportunity! And thank you for visiting the Ravenous Reader blog.

Please return for my review of Freaksville on Monday

>Author(s) Interview with Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

>Today I have the distinct pleasure of interviewing debut authors Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. They are the amazing co-authors of BEAUTIFUL CREATURES, a gothic romance of epic proportions that will capture your attention and hold it captive. This wonderful novel is due to hit the shelves this coming Tuesday, but you can find it out and about now.

Please come and join me for this informative interview and get to know the authors a little better. Please stay tuned for I am hosting an awesome contest and you may win your very own signed copy of Beautiful Creatures.

Some loves are meant to be…
others are cursed.

There were no surprises
in Gatlin County.
At least, that’s what I thought.
Turns out, I couldn’t have
been more wrong.
There was a curse.
There was a girl.
And in the end,
there was a grave.

RR: What is Beautiful Creatures about?

K: It’s the story of a boy who lives in a small Southern town, where nothing ever changes…

M: And there’s a girl, and a curse.

    RR: What’s your favorite genre to read, and what made you both decided to write a YA novel?

      M: I’m a YA fantasy girl all the way, so we were both working on YA novels before we decided to tell Ethan and Lena’s story.

      K: We both read YA fantasy, so we never considered writing anything else. And a book without magic…I don’t know if that would be quite as fun.

      RR: Beautiful Creatures is an epic novel. I admit to feeling a bit leery about reading a novel of its size, but once I began reading it I could not stop, and I do not believe that Beautiful Creatures could be told as beautifully with a smaller page count. What do you tell someone that may be skeptical to read it simply due to its size?

      M: Sometimes good things come in big packages. J A true Southern Gothic novel is a sprawling, epic story, and we wanted to do justice to that tradition. Look at Gone With the Wind…

      K: Or Anne Rice’s Southern Gothics. In the South, they spin a good yarn. Spinning takes time.

      RR: I loved the most recent book trailer that was created for Beautiful Creatures. The scenes where spot on brilliant. Where did the idea come from?

      M: That was all Vania Stoyanova, who collaborated with Kami to come up with something that really represents the world of our book. Vania is the best of the best, we were lucky to get her.

      K: It really was all Vania. She had an innate sense of the characters and the mood of the book, and I think that’s what you see in the trailer. When she showed me her test shots of Lena, I was speechless. I was looking at Lena.

      RR: I found that when I visited your respective websites that we had something in common, cemeteries. It is one of my favorite past times to go and take pictures at graveyards.

      Margie: We love graveyards. They’re so full of beauty and sadness and mystery and love. Southern graveyards are even better.

      Kami: Graveyards are about history, and remembering. They’re monuments for the people we’ve loved and lost. There’s beauty in that, and magic.

      RR: How many books are going to be part of the series?

      Margie: We just completed work on the sequel, which will be out next fall, 2010. Beyond that, we’ll let you know as soon as we’re able.

      RR: In 5 years, where do you see yourselves?

      Margie: Hopefully, still writing, still reading, still working…

      Kami: I hope I’m writing books I love and feel proud to share with our readers. I’d also like to be doing it from a house in the South, drinking sweet tea.

      RR: Beautiful Creatures had an amazing cast of characters and I have my favorites. Do you have a favorite character from Beautiful Creatures and why?

      Margie: Outside of Lena and Ethan, I would say Macon or Marian. Macon has his Cary Grant charm, and Marian reminds me of all the librarians and teachers I have loved in my life.

      Kami: I love Amma and Ridley. Amma is a tiny thing, but can scare the devil out of men twice her size. I respect a woman who shouldn’t be messed with. Ridley isn’t your typical bad girl. Although, she does drive the guys crazy.

    RR: What message would you like your readers to take from Beautiful Creatures?

    Margie: I’d like our readers to not be afraid to think for themselves, and to not be afraid to stand up for what they believe in.

    Kami: I hope BC gives our readers the strength to be themselves, even if that person is different than everyone else.

    RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you & find out more about you and your books?

    Margie: We can always be reached on twitter at @mstohl and @kamigarcia or through our website,

    You can keep up with Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl at

    Visit Little, Brown’s Beautiful Creatures website at
    Author photo credit goes to: Alex Hoerner

    >Author Interview with Sarah Beth Durst


    Sarah Beth Durst is the author of ICE and as part of the Traveling to Teens book tour Sarah is stopping by today. In case you don’t know about ICE, here is a brief synopsis:

    When Cassie was a little girl, her grandmother told her a fairytale about her mother, who made a deal with the Polar Bear King and was swept away to the ends of the earth to become a prisoner of the trolls. Now that Cassie is older, she knows that this was a nice way of saying her mother had died. Cassie lives with her father at an Arctic research station, she is determined to become a scientist, and she has no time for make believe.

    Then, on her eighteenth birthday, Cassie comes face to face with a polar bear who speaks to her. He tells her that her mother is alive, imprisoned in the troll castle. And that he can bring her back–if Cassie will agree to be his bride.

    That is the beginning of Cassie’s own real-life fairytale, one that sends her on an unbelievable journey across the brutal Arctic, through the Canadian boreal forest, and on the back of the North Wind to the land east of the sun and west of the moon. Before it is over, the world she knew will be swept away, and everything she holds dear will be taken from her–until she discovers the true meaning of love and family in the magical realm of Ice

    It is an amazing novel full of fairy tale and wonder set upon the ICE of the artic but will truly melt your heart 🙂 and with out further delay here is my interview with Sarah.


    RR: If you could be one of your characters – Who would you be? And why?

    Cassie. She’s fearless. She races across the sea ice, jumps off a mountain, walks through a blizzard… I, on the other hand, am afraid of a million things, including bodily harm, Frisbees, and skunks.

    RR: What’s your favorite genre to read?

    YA fantasy. Give me a book with a girl and a wolf, girl and dragon, girl and ghost/vampire/werewolf, and I’m happy. I am drawn to the optimistic worldview that pervades most of YA fantasy — the idea that the little guy can defeat the massive evil if he/she simply tries hard enough and is nice to small woodland creatures.

    RR: Who or what influences you when you write?

    Everything I see, hear, and feel influences me. Probably smell and taste too but not quite as much. You know, the one super-power I’ve never wished for is super-smell. But seriously, I believe that everything you experience shapes your writing.

    RR: What do you do on a typical writing day?

    I try to make every day a writing day. I think that helps demystify the process — if you do it every day (successfully or not) then it becomes more of a habit (like brushing your teeth) than an overwhelming undertaking.

    RR: When you have writer’s block how do you break free?

    If I feel blocked, I write in my journal. Basically, I talk to myself (but by typing, not talking out loud). I talk through the story, I give myself pep talks, I vent about whatever is bothering me… The important thing is to continue stringing words together. Also, eating chocolate helps.

    RR: Can you please give us a sneak peek of your upcoming YA book?

    Ice is about a polar bear, true love, and one girl’s impossible quest across the frozen North. If you’re interested, I’ve posted the first two chapters here on my website:

    RR: You are a successful author of the paranormal genre, what made you decide to go into YA?

    It’s what I read. It’s what I love. I think it’s extremely important to write what you love. (Note: this is not the same as “write what you know.” You can learn facts; it’s harder to learn passion.)

    RR: How did you come up with the idea for ICE, it was quite unique and an enthralling read?

    Thanks! Ice was inspired by the Norwegian folktale East of the Sun and West of the Moon, as well as the memoirs of many Arctic explorers. I think of it as Beauty and the Beast meets Arctic adventure.

    RR: Can you please tell us what you have planned next?

    My next book is called TIGERLILY. It’s coming from Simon & Schuster in fall 2010. It’s about applying to college, meeting college boys, talking to gargoyles, flying on dragons, saving the world… you know, the usual teenage experience.

    RR: What do you do for inspiration?

    Talk to my husband. Take walks. Read books. Listen to music. Eat chocolate. But most importantly, I write. The act of writing often leads to inspiration — it doesn’t have to be the other way around.

    RR: Do you have a favorite character from your ICE novel?

    I love them all.

    RR: Is there a genre of book you would like to write but haven’t yet?

    Nope. I only want to write fantasy. I’m happy to write any age level, but I want my books to always have magic in them. I think that’s a wonderful and meaningful thing that a writer can do: add wonder to the world.

    RR: What kind of research do you do for your books? Do you enjoy the research process?

    I love research, and I do tons of it for my books. It’s such a great excuse to immerse yourself in other worlds.

    RR: Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?

    Neither. I write the same with or without a deadline. Writing is just what I do and who I am.

    RR: What would you like to tell your readers?

    Thank you for reading!

    RR: Do you outline your books or just start writing?
    I always outline. It helps me feel out the shape of the story and keeps me from being distracted by shiny objects (or “plot bunnies” — ideas so appealing that you can’t help hopping after them even if they’re leading you to a seedy part of town filled with zombies…).

    RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?
    Yes, I have a website (, a blog (, MySpace (, Twitter (, Facebook ( and you can email me at I check them all incessantly. 🙂

    RR: How can readers find out more about you and your books?

    You can either visit my website or my author page on the Simon & Schuster website (

    RR: Thank you so much for this fabulous interview. It was a great pleasure as was reading your book, ICE.

    Thanks so much for interviewing me!

    Tomorrow head on over to Ticket to Anywhere blog for another day filled with Sarah Beth Durst awsomeness!!

    >Author Interview with Michelle Rowen and Win a signed copy of Demon Princess and MORE!!

    > Today on the Ravenous Reader blog I am pleased to present an author interview with the fabulous Michelle Rowen author of the upcoming YA novel Demon Princess: Reign or Shine.

    I am most excited about this interview because I adored Demon Princess, it was one of my favorite reads this year. Full of danger, excitement, romance and yes DEMONS. You cannot go wrong with this amazing read. Also! Michelle is just super duper spectacular, the sweetest ever and we love the same type of books and can we dish about them 🙂

    Demon Princess is to hit the shelves this upcoming Tuesday 9/29/09. So, take a few minutes get to know about a great author and then go and get Demon Princess when it hits the shelves. You will not be dissappointed.

    Thank you Michelle for spending some time with me at the Ravenous Reader blog.

    RR: If you could be one of your characters – Who would you be? And why?
    MR: That’s a tough question. I’m usually really mean and nasty to my characters and make them go through a lot of very unpleasant stuff. *evil smile* But if all was right with the world and my character was having a lovely, non-scary day, I think I’d like to be Nikki from Demon Princess because she has some cool powers and it would be interesting to be sixteen again.

    RR: What’s your favorite genre to read?
    MR: It varies. Lately I’ve been reading a lot of young adult fiction—Vampire Academy is one of my favorite series and I will readily admit to anyone that I am a total, unapologetic Twihard (Team Jacob for the books, Team Switzerland for the movies). I also love urban fantasy as long as it has a little bit (or a lot) of romance in it. Basically I love fantasy fiction in all its forms!

    RR: Who or what influences you when you write?
    MR: I’m influenced more by television and movies than by other books. My biggest influence for my writing is probably Buffy the Vampire Slayer — that mix of humor and scarier, more dramatic stuff was something I really enjoyed watching.

    RR: What do you do on a typical writing day?
    MR: Procrastinate a lot. Ha! Seriously though, on an official writing day I will sit on my couch until I get the words I need. I have a set amount of pages to do per day to meet my personal deadlines (which are usually well before my “official” deadlines). I do have a tendency to wander off mentally to various places online, but I try to be somewhat disciplined. Right now I’m trying to get a first draft done and I have a ten page a day goal that I have been sticking to pretty closely.

    RR: When you have writer’s block how do you break free?
    MR: I tend to get writer’s block at the beginning of a new book, but this usually indicates that I haven’t let the idea simmer long enough or I haven’t done enough prewriting to help me feel comfortable with my plot and characters. The best way to get out of it is to brainstorm plot points and direction. I also try not to expect too much out of myself at the beginning. It takes a while for my engine to warm up. But once I’m going, I can be super speedy. In my opinion, writer’s block is usually caused by either fear (of failing to write a good book) or poor preparation. Once those two things are axed, there is no reason not to move forward.

    RR: Can you please give us a sneak peek of your upcoming YA book?
    MR: Sure! DEMON PRINCESS: REIGN OR SHINE is about a girl who, shortly after her sixteenth birthday, learns that her father whom she’s never met before is a demon king in another dimension called the Shadowlands. And now that she’s sixteen she’s going to start manifesting her demonic powers and needs to see him for guidance on this life-changing problem. He sends a (really cute) messenger named Michael to her who also acts as her bodyguard since not everyone is thrilled to learn that she’s the missing heir to her father’s throne.

    RR: You are a successful author of the paranormal genre, what made you decide to go into YA?
    MR: I never really decided to go into YA, I’ve always been a YA writer. I just got published in paranormal first. I was writing YA long before I started writing paranormal romance. It’s my first love and I’m so thrilled to get the chance to officially become a part of this wonderful genre.

    RR: How did you come up with the idea for DEMON PRINCESS: REIGN OR SHINE, it was quite unique, funny and engaging.
    MR: Thank you! In my books, I like to take seemingly normal people and thrust them into very not normal situations and see how they react. The spark for Demon Princess was wondering what would happen if a normal sixteen year old girl found out her father was a demon. At a time when you really want to fit in — and Nikki just started a new high school after a move so she’s struggling to fit in to begin with — and a zit on your chin is embarrassing, what if you might suddenly sprout horns and wings at any moment?

    RR: Can you please tell us what you have planned next in the series?
    MR: Someone otherworldly Nikki met very briefly in the first book who has taken a very keen interest in her, shows up at her high school unannounced — only one of many indicators that it’s going to be very difficult for Nikki to keep her two lives — the demon and the human one — separate and controllable.

    RR: What do you do for inspiration?
    MR: I read, I go to the movies, I go on vacation. I find that I get inspiration when I’m not really thinking about anything specific — so I get a lot of ideas when I’m driving or on the treadmill or even in the shower. I think inspiration can come from anywhere and everywhere. I just have to make sure I have a piece of paper and a pen when it happens!

    RR: Do you have a favorite character from your DEMON PRINCESS series?
    MR: Luckily for me, my favorite character in the series is Nikki herself. Since the books are written from her point of view, my fondness for her definitely helps bring her to life.

    RR: Is there a genre of book you would like to write but haven’t yet?
    MR: I’d like to write a comedy romance novel that doesn’t have any fantasy elements to it. However, I’m in no hurry to do this since right now. I’m all about the fantasy. 🙂

    RR: What kind of research do you do for your books? Do you enjoy the research process?
    MR: I always joke that I hate doing research which is why I’ve chosen to write fantasy, since I can just make stuff up. LOL. But every book requires a bit of research. I do enjoy it, to a point. I don’t overdo it, though. For the book I’m writing now (an adult urban fantasy) I have researched Death Valley. How to get to Death Valley from San Diego. What exactly dialysis entails. German names for vampires. And the side effects of arsenic. Quite a mix, but I just glanced at each one to get a feel for it, then bookmarked it in a folder specific to the book I’m writing so I can always go back and do more research if I have to.

    RR: Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?
    MR: They help. My muse is incredibly lazy. She likes to take a long time writing books. Like, two years, which is about how long it took me to write my first book. But with having deadlines, she’s gotten into really amazing shape. Her abs are fantastic. I can now write a book in about three months from beginning to end, currently helping me to write four books a year.

    RR: What would you like to tell your readers?
    MR: That they’re all brilliant and gorgeous. 🙂

    RR: Do you outline your books or just start writing?
    MR: I’m an outliner. However, Demon Princess was a rare exception to that rule. I wrote the first draft for Nanowrimo three years ago without an outline and only a vague idea of what I wanted to happen. When I finished it, I knew I wanted to have it published someday. Unfortunately, since I hadn’t outlined, it was a mess. It took a lot of work and about six drafts to get it in the shape it is now. I’d never write another book without at least a vague outline again.

    RR: How many novels to do you have planned for your new YA series?
    MR: I have enough material for at least six books stored up in my imagination. I certainly hope to be given the opportunity to continue to explore Nikki’s world.

    RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?
    MR: I’m all over the internet. My website (paranormal romance and YA) is at and there’s a contact page there with my email address. I’m on MySpace but I don’t really check that as often as I used to. I’m on Facebook a lot with a personal page at and a book-specific fan page at And I’m on twitter (too much) at

    RR: How can readers find out more about you and your books?
    MR: They should definitely check out my website at

    THANK YOU! MICHELLE for being such a sweetie and answering my endless questions. Congrats on Demon Princess and hope that you come back sometime soon 🙂

    Now onto the book give-a-way goodness. Michelle is graciously giving away a signed copy of Demon Princess to a lucky commenter.

    Give-a-way goodness rules:

    1) +5 points Send some well wishes HERE to Michelle and tell her why you want to read Demon Princess. (pssssssst…because it is awesome!!!)
    2) +3 points Follow me and I will throw in an extra goodie. Demon headband and pitch fork…great for Halloween!!!
    3) + 2 points Post a link to this post.
    4) Contest available internationally and this ends on the 30th of this month and will be selected via random generator 🙂

    >Author Interview and Giveaway with Gena Showalter


    Today on the RAVENOUS READER blog I have a great interview with the most awesome Gena Showalter. Gena is an avid romance reader who decided to create her own stories, and is now the author of sexy paranormal romances, romantic contemporaries, and a new YA series. Her mix of humor, danger, and wicked romance make her novels amazing page turners.

    RR: What’s your favorite genre to read? Paranormal romance for sure! So many wonderful possibilities, white-hot passion…love it!

    RR: What do you do on a typical writing day? I wake up, drink coffee, and check my email. Then, I start writing and I don’t stop until I’ve written an entire chapter. (Except for the times I am distracted by thoughts of more email) Sometimes that takes me two hours. Sometimes that takes me twelve.

    RR: When you have writer’s block how do you break free? Writer’s block is not something I’ve ever had to deal with. Thank God! However, when I reach a point in the story and I’m unsure how to proceed, I go for a walk. Maybe it’s the increased oxygen, but the answer always slips into place.

    RR: Can you please give us a sneak peek of your upcoming YA book? Aden Stone has friends. They just happen to be the four human souls living inside him. Everyone thinks he’s crazy, but he doesn’t mind. For months he’s been having visions of a beautiful girl—a girl who will either save him or destroy him. Together they’ll enter a dark world of intrigue and danger . . . but not everyone will come out alive.

    RR: You are a successful author of the paranormal genre, what made you decide to go into YA? I love reading about those first experiences, watching kids figure out who they are and what they’re going to do with their lives. Writing that kind of story was just a natural progression for me.

    RR: How did you come up with the idea for INTERTWINED, it was quite unique. Is it difficult to keep that many characters within a character?
    One day I saw a (sexy) teen boy in my mind. (Yes, I’m a cougar) He was talking to himself and everyone assumed he was mental. Only he and I knew he was actually talking to the souls trapped inside him. Intertwined was born from there.

    RR: Can you please tell us what you have planned next in the series? I’m working on Unraveled right now. The stakes are higher, and the romances heating up. Well, a bit LOL

    RR: What do you do for inspiration?
    ? Inspiration is everywhere. Something I see, hear or read will just click in my mind and I’ll start playing the “what if” game with myself. Best. Game. Ever.

    RR: Do you have a favorite character from your INTERTWINED series? I love them all. They’re all so different, that they each have a different piece of my heart. Aden, I just ache for him. Riley, such a bad boy. Mary Ann, so unsure. Victoria, so determined.

    RR: Do deadlines help or hinder your muse? Help. I am totally time obsessive. Once I know something is due, I can’t think of anything else until it’s turned in.

    RR: Do you outline your books or just start writing? I just start writing. Only takes a grain of an idea, and everything blooms from there, the characters taking me to where they want to go.

    RR: Do you belong to a critique group? If so, how does this help or hinder you? I send my work to best friend and fellow author Jill Monroe before I ever send it to my editor. She reads it, and shows me where I messed up. So she helps, big time.

    RR: How many novels to do you have planned for your new YA series? Four. Though I was thinking just today that I would like to continue on, focusing on some of the secondary characters…

    RR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group? We have just redesigned my website, so there’s lots of new information to be found: <>
    I do have a myspace page ( <> ) and a facebook page ( <> ) and I do twitter (

    RR: How can readers find out more about you and your books? Peruse my website. All kinds of goodies and tidbits there, and we update constantly.

    Gena, Thank you for coming over and visiting. It was a pleasure to have you here and hope that you come by again:)

    Now, let’s get to some more awesome Gena goodness. Are you interested in an copy of Intertwined? I am giving away a copy and it is the easiest give-away evah!

    Give-a-way rules:

    1)Give me a number from 1-100 and let me know which soul residing within Aden that you would most like to be. That’s it, told you it was easy.
    Most sixteen-year-olds have friends. Aden Stone has four human souls living inside him:
    One can time-travel.
    One can raise the dead.
    One can tell the future.
    And one can possess another human.

    2)Contest ends on September 15th at midnight PST.

    3)Open to everyone 🙂

    I am having Gena pick the two combo’s and will post her picks, come back and make sure to see if you have won.

    >Give-a-way and INTERVIEW: Allison Burnett of Undiscovered Gyrl

    > Today I am interviewing Allison Burnett, author of Undiscovered Gyrl. A novel about a girl on a destructive path of self discovery.

    Undiscovered Gyrl will be in stores August 11, 2009


    RR: Hello Allison and thank you for visiting the Ravenous Reader’s blog

    AB: My pleasure, Nancy. Thank you for having me.

    RR: Undiscovered Gyrl is different from any other book that I have recently read. Dark and brutally honest, infused with brilliant dialogue. There were times I wanted to hug Katie, and other times I wanted to shake her and ask why? She was very much in touch with her baser sides. We can all seem to relate to her in some way. What research did you have to do for this novel? Did you have one person in mind or did your pull from many sources?

    AB: I did not do any research. I am not sure exactly where Katie come from. As is true with every character I write, I heard her voice and began to type. She was not modeled after anyone in particular, although certain details of her life are similar to those of an old friend of mine, whose name and fate I would rather not discuss. I tutored high school kids for years, so perhaps that had something to with her creation, too. I have always been drawn to female characters….

    RR: It seems as if you really enjoyed writing about Katie and her adventures, you can see that great care was given to this character. Is there anything you would want to change in Undiscovered Gyrl?

    AB: Yes, writing Katie was a joy. I miss her. As far as regrets, or things I would change, I wish that Katie had explained why she spells gyrl with “y.” Is it a feminist statement of some sort? Some profound subversion? No, it’s because when she was choosing the domain name for her website, undiscovered girl with an “i” was already taken. The reason I would not change anything else the book is that I went over the manuscript many, many times. The last time was just a few months ago, so I have not had time to regret anything. But I doubt I will. I tend to look forward….

    RR: It was a bit scary to see the destructive path that Katie was on and at times I did not think she would ever pull through, but just as she was beginning to turn her life around….something happens and no closure is given. Why did you decide on going down that road?

    AB: I don’t “decide” things like these. At least I don’t experience that I do. I experience that Katie’s fate is the result of her choices and that it was the only honest (and, thankfully, the most compelling) end to her tale. Some readers need their books to end conclusively, with a coffin nail. I am one of them. I love ambiguity, as long as it is resonant.

    RR: What is the next project that you are working on?

    AB: I just finished a novel called The Escape of Malcolm, which I am thrilled about. I also wrote the remake of Fame which opens on September 25 nationwide.

    RR: Thank you for stopping by and visiting with me on my blog. I hope to see you again someday 🙂

    AB: Anytime, Nancy.

    Great interview, right? So, I have my copy of Undiscovered Girl and want to share the love with someone who really wants to read the book 🙂
    Here are the rules:
    1) Follow me and if you have then let me know
    2) Tell me why you would want to read Undiscovered Girl. EASY PEAZY
    3) I will select the winner thru a random selector on August 10th midnight PST. This contest is for U.S. and Canadian entrants only 🙂
    Be sure to follow Allison on this blog tour by going
    on friday.