Giveaways, Other

Giveaway: ACOWAR – Sarah J Maas Poster

Hello, all! Welcome to the very first giveaway hosted here on Ink Drops Books! It may be a small one, but if you like this, there might just be some bigger giveaways lined up for the future…

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Amongst my busy summer holidays, I attended YALC (the Young Adult Literature Convention) here in London a few weeks ago and picked up two of these great Sarah J Maas posters promoting the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, and specifically the latest book, A Court of Wings and Ruin! They are absolutely huge (A2 size) and so they don’t both fit in my room. Therefore, luckily for all you lovely people, I’ll be giving one away right here! The poster in question is pictured below.

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In case you haven’t read Sarah J Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses series, it follows a young girl called Feyre who accidentally gets swept up into a world of faeries, magic and darkness. The series is a trilogy, and if you enjoy Thrones of Glass or other YA fantasy, you might enjoy this. You can follow this link right here to read up a bit on my reviews and other posts mentioning Sarah J Maas.

Entering this giveaway is super easy, but please make sure you read the details below before you sign up.

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The giveaway is open worldwide and will end in a week (until August 19th) at midnight (GMT) when the winner will be chosen randomly. If you are a minor please ask permission to give me your email when you enter and to send me your address in case you win. The poster will be sent Royal Mail Signed For delivery if you live in the UK, and standard delivery if you live outside of the UK, so I can’t take responsibility for anything that happens once the poster is sent. However, I can guarantee that I will send the package by the end of the following week. Finally, the posters were packaged flat and so the poster has been folded twice. There is a crease down the middle both ways – but it is still beautiful!

Now, for the fun bit. As I said, entering this giveaway is super easy. Just follow this link – here – and follow the instructions. Good luck!

Don’t forget to check out the rest of my blog and follow (links in the sidebar to your right) if you aren’t following already! This isn’t an additional entry but it would be a very nice thing for you to do.

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Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Books Without Romance

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s topic is books without romance. Sometimes, romance plots can follow certain cliches, and are, by their nature, usually quite predictable in their endings. For that reason, I don’t typically love romance novels, and prefer the romance to be a secondary storyline, or play a minor role, if any at all. Sometimes I love the cliches, and sometimes I want something new. This can be difficult to find, but it can be refreshing and if done right, can bring to light different themes that aren’t always explored as much, as well as exploring other relationship dynamics that characters have, whether they are friendships or family bonds.

Here we go!

1. The Red Abbey Chronicles – Maria Turtschaninoff

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When does this series not feature in one of my T5W posts? I don’t know if it ever won’t be here. I will find every opportunity I possibly can to talk about this. Romance is completely absent in the first novel, Maresi, and features slightly in the second, but never in the way that you expect it. Turtschaninoff’s writing is completely new and different, and so her exploration of love and romance is as well.

Read my reviews for the first two books in the series here and here.

2. American Gods – Neil Gaiman

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Romance features briefly at the start of this novel, but not for long. Before the story has even got going, Shadow Moon discovers that the love of his life Laura has died. From then on, he embarks on an adventure with the mysterious Thursday, discovering that gods are real, and that they are going to war. Although this isn’t a book devoid of romance, much like the Red Abbey Chronicles, this is not a story that is driven by romance.

Read my full review here.

3. The Way Back Home – Allan Stratton 

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The most important relationship in this novel is that of Zoe and her grandmother, who she runs away from home with to protect. I thought at one point that romance would feature, but it turned out to simply be a red herring. It was so satisfying to see a YA novel adventure that focused solely on the family relationships of the main character.

Read my full review here.

4. Everything I Never Told You – Celeste Ng

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Another YA novel that focused on family bonds, Everything I Never Told You is one of the most interesting books I have read in this genre. In the very first page, we are told that Lydia, the favourite child of the Lee family, has died. Over the course of the novel, Ng explores not only the relationships between the characters, but the dynamics of interracial relationships, racial identity, the American dream, the pressures that children face, and guilt.

5. Uprooted – Naomi Novik 

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The whole way through this novel I expected there to be more romance. It just goes to show how conditioned we are to expect it. Although romance did feature, it only made an appearance two times, if I remember correctly. Other than that, there was so much more to the plot that it took a back seat, and it would have been just as good without it altogether, because the relationship between Agnieszka and ‘the Dragon’ is so complex regardless.

Read my full review here.

Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Hate to Love Ships

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s topic is all about ships where the characters started out hating each other but that hatred blossomed into sweet, sweet love. In my opinion, the will-they-won’t-they of a romance plot is much more interesting than the same romance plot after the characters have gotten together. I love the anticipation. That’s why this is one of those cliches that I really don’t think cheapens a work. There are some that I grow tired of, but watching a tense relationship between two strong characters change against the characters’ wishes is always so exciting and satisfying. It just goes to show that sometimes it doesn’t matter that a story is predictable, what matters is that it entertains you.

There are a lot of great relationships in this category, and I tried to choose examples from a wide cross-section of literature. So, here goes. My favourite Hate to Love Ships are:

1. Lizzie Bennett and Mr Darcy – Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

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It’s impossible to complete a post on hate to love relationships without paying homage to the most famous of all. Did Lizzie and Darcy begin this trope? I’m not sure, but they definitely are a prime example of it done perfectly. Each is certain that the other is absolutely detestable, and even make this thought public, and, as their feelings begin to change, they remain certain that the other hates them. They meet multiple obstacles, until finally, they see the light and come together. This pair have gone down in history as being an amazing hate to love ship because Austen’s  writing is so funny and light, and her characters are crafted so well that they come to life on the page.

2. Dimple and Rishi – When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

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This incredibly fun read was only recently released, but it is making waves. It puts a modern twist on a classic tale. This is, at heart, a simple tale of will-they-won’t-they, where the pair clash at the start, and then come together. In this tale, the hatred is more one-sided than in others, but we still see the same changes in the relationship of the characters and the happy ending.

Click here to read my full review for When Dimple Met Rishi.

3. Amani and Jin – Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

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The scenes in this series which stand out the most to me are both in this book, and both involve high tension scenes between these characters. Amani and Jin spend much of this book at loggerheads, and then are thrust together against their will and have to stick together to survive, or get what they need. Their wittiness made their petty arguments fun to read, and the development of this tension to love made me feel all squishy inside like a good romance plot should.

Click here to read my full review for Rebel of the Sands.

4.  Cat and Griffin – A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet 

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Okay, I’ll be honest. I didn’t love this book and there were even bits of this relationship that I found a bit problematic. However, this is a great example of a great hate to love plot. The emotions between these characters are always strong, always raw, and always fun to read, despite my issues with the book in general.

Click here to read my full review for A Promise of Fire.

5. Louisa and Will – Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

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Will is really mean to Louisa when he first meets her. He’s condescending, he teases her, and he frankly treats her like crap. However, the journey that the characters go on together makes for a really brilliant reading experience, and Jojo Moyes’s writing shows how both characters feel, why they act the way they do, and what makes them change.

Click here to read my full review for Me Before You.

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Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Favourite ‘Unlikeable’ Protagonists

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s theme is unlikeable protagonists. I personally love a brilliant villain, but it can be difficult to have a good unlikeable protagonist. You have to take someone with serious flaws and make readers see some light in them. It’s difficult to do, and sometimes a ‘good’ unlikeable protagonist just becomes someone that you can’t stand, and the balance between flaws and strengths is lost. Here’s a list of examples where I think it’s been done right.

1. Naondel – Maria Turtschaninoff

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I couldn’t just pick one of Naondel’s many narrators, but something that I think Turtschaninoff did really well was craft really complex characters. All of the women that narrate this novel are out to save their own skin, and largely remain so for most of the novel. They are selfish and ambitious out of need and form few friendships and bonds between them. However, you come to love them as characters because their lives and thoughts are so well presented and you see their distinct personalities coming together when they realise they should not be enemies any longer.

2. Celaena Sardothien from Throne of Glass – Sarah J Maas

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I chose the protagonist of the early books in the Throne of Glass series over that of the later books because Celaena was everything that I enjoy in an unlikeable protagonist. I loved how she toed the line between hero and villain. She was dangerous, a threat to everyone and not afraid to show it, proud of her strength and skill, scheming, and powerful, but at the same time we saw gentler sides to her. We saw her both as an assassin and as a friend, lover, and protector. While some people simply love Celaena, I actually often toe the line between love and hate in these books, especially in the later books. There are moments where I love her sassiness, her wit, and the double sides to her character, and there are other moments where I feel tired of it, and want her to just pick the a side, good or bad. I guess that’s what makes her such an intriguing protagonist.

3. Eva from We Need to Talk About Kevin – Lionel Shriver

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Eva is far from a likeable character because of her crude honesty. She is completely open about not having wanted her first child Kevin, about her dislike for him as a child and uneasiness around him, about her resenting many of the choices that she allowed herself to be talked into by her husband. We learn that her son Kevin killed seven students and two adults in a massacre at his school, and we see Eva visiting him in prison and even preparing her house for his return, taking extra care to ensure he will be comfortable. Throughout the novel, I wasn’t ever quite sure about Eva, and I definitely felt uneasy reading this novel, but it was an unfamiliar feeling that I actually really enjoyed.

4. Cersei Lannister from A Song of Ice and Fire – George R.R. Martin

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I always get weird looks for saying that Cersei is one of my favourite characters in this series, but she is just the epitome of a great villain. What I love about Cersei, and about the characterisation in this series generally, is that you always see the characters’ motives for their actions. Cersei is undeniably selfish and cruel, but you also know that she does the things she does to protect her family. I also think she’s a fascinating character in how scheming she is and how she is one of the most dangerous characters in the series without being a warrior in the typical sense.

5. Pip – Great Expectations from Charles Dickens

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Reading this novel, I actually actively disliked Pip. I thought he was selfish and couldn’t see past his own desires, he was ungrateful to his uncle, and narrow-minded. I hated how he treated those who had helped him, and how quickly he seemed to forget all about him. However, it all fits into the story well, as it is about growing up and learning valuable lessons, which Pip definitely does. He learns that the things he had thought were wrong, and comes to realise the errors of his ways.

Do you like an unlikeable protagonist? How many flaws is too many flaws?

Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Side Ships

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s topic is relationships that don’t involve the protagonist. I am a major shipper, so this was a lot of fun. There is some repetition in this post, as much as I try to avoid it, but I couldn’t help it! Here we go!

1. Dorian and Manon (Throne of Glass)

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I almost gave Manon her own entry here, just “Manon with herself” because Manon really doesn’t need another party to be whole, but her and Dorian are a great couple to read. I saw it coming a mile off, but their characters really do read together really well.

2. Lorcan and Elide (Throne of Glass) 

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It’s almost impossible for me to not fall in love with a ship where two people who initially hate each other are stuck together on a long journey, both pursuing different aims and possibly secretly each other’s enemies. It’s a recipe for great sexual tension and relationship angst, and Sarah J Maas really delivered here. If there is anything that Maas does well, it’s relationships!

3. Sevro au Barca and Victra au Julii (Red Rising) 

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Sevro and Victra are a power couple if ever I’ve seen one. I loved reading their relationship because they’re so different, they’re such bold characters, and they both hold their own. I almost couldn’t believe that they would get together!

4. Lupin and Tonks (Harry Potter)

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These characters’ deaths were some of the most painful in the whole series for me. Not only did it take forever for them to get together, but even once they got together they just couldn’t get a break.

5. Bill and Fleur (Harry Potter) 

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This pairing go through a lot, and to make things even better, all of their exchanges are told with a great written rendition of Fleur’s French accent, for example: “Bill, don’t look at me — I’m ’ideous.” How can you not enjoy them?

Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Books For Your Hogwarts House

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s theme is about books that represent your Hogwarts house. I am a proud Ravenclaw, and so I’ve tried to think of books and characters that remind me of the themes of knowledge and learning. Here we go

1. When Dimple Met Rishi – Sandy Menon

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Dimple feels like a Ravenclaw through and through. She wants nothing more than to focus on her passion, coding and computers. Her love of learning marks her out as a Ravenclaw from the very beginning.

Read my review here.

2. Maresi – Maria Turtschaninoff

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This book takes place at the Red Abbey, a safe haven for women escaping from all sorts of traumas and dangers, but it is not only that. It is also a community that is dedicated to learning and knowledge. The girls who come to the Red Abbey have opportunities and access to education that they often couldn’t dream of accessing elsewhere.

Read my review here.

3. Uprooted – Naomi Novik

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There are several aspects of this book that reminded me of Ravenclaw. When Agnieszka is taken to live with the dragon, she is understandably afraid, but we later see her grow to become inquisitive and eager to learn as much as possible about her powers and the forest in her land. She knows that her power and strength and the only way to defeat the forest is through learning how to hone her skills.

Read my review here.

4. Matilda – Roald Dahl

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Another character that I don’t believe we can deny has some pretty strong Ravenclaw traits. Matilda loves to read so much that she reads her way through the library, she loves learning so much that she asks to be sent to school, and she can move things with her mind! I hope she got her Hogwarts letter when she turned eleven cause she definitely belongs in the Wizarding World!

5. The Book Thief – Markus Zusak

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Book are an escape for Liesel, and not only stories. The first book that she stills is a gravedigger’s guide, and she still reads it religiously. The books also bring together the characters in the book, who are united by the stories that they read to each other, and for Liesel and Max, language and vocabulary plays a significant role in their relationship. As a Ravenclaw, I loved the way that words meant to much to the characters in the book.

Read my review here.

Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Fandoms You Are No Longer In

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s theme is about fandoms that you used to be incredibly invested in and no longer are. This was a bit difficult for me, because I spent most of my childhood thinking about Harry Potter, and to be honest, I still do. I think part of the reason why I haven’t left many fandoms is that I only recently returned to YA books, and so most of the books that I read as a teenager were actually adult books that I am still into, like the ASOIAF series.

Although there aren’t many fandoms that I’ve left behind, I have thought back extra hard to remember what authors and books I really loved and devoted a lot of time to, so here goes!

1. Twilight – Stephenie Meyer

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I think most people around my age had a ‘Twilight phase’, or are still huge fans of the series. Mine lasted for about two years. I read the books twice through, if I remember correctly, and watched the first film countless times. I never watched the films after the third, and haven’t read any of the subsequent releases after the first series. It was a lot of fun for a teenage girl reading her first real fantasy romance novel, but I didn’t remain impressed for long.

2. A Series of Unfortunate Events – Lemony Snicket 

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This is a throwback way into my childhood. I read these books as a child and absolutely loved them. When the Netflix adaptation came out recently I vividly remembered hours spent poring over details in the book, trying to discover who killed the Baudelaire parents and what the VFD really meant. When the book finished, I imagined what the Baudelaire children would go on to do and where it would go on. I wrote emails to Lemony Snicket and got a suitably witty and pessimistic response.

3. Throne of Glass – Sarah J Maas

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This is quite a recent ‘throwback’, or not much of a throwback at all. My experiences with the Throne of Glass novels has been a whirlwind. I started reading these books about a year and a half ago, and went from loving them, delving right into Celaena’s character and the world of Sarah J Maas, and by the time I read Empire of Storms, eagerly picking up my copy on release day, I realised that I was just reading the books because I wanted to see what happened and not because I was really enjoying it anymore. I will still read the subsequent books, but basically just because I feel invested in the story.

4. Skulduggery Pleasant – Derek Landy

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I was scrolling through upcoming events at a local bookshop recently and noticed a Derek Lady event for the release of the latest instalment of this series and it all came flooding back. I loved these books while I was at school, but I only read a couple. I don’t know how or why I ever decided to stop reading this book series about a skeleton man in a trench coat with a female teen assistant. It’s like a gory horror version of Doctor Who! Even over ten years since I started it, it still sounds appealing, but with ten books in the series, I think it’s a bit much to sign up for.

5. Percy Jackson & the Olympians – Rick Riordan

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My best friend introduced me to this series and I devoured my way through her copy of the books. I still recall, with a broken heart, how my school wouldn’t let us miss our English lesson to attend a Rick Riordan event with our librarian, but how she got us signed copies of his latest book.

This post was a lot of fun! I had forgotten about some of these series (particularly the last two) until I went through my goodreads account and remembered how much I had loved them. Are there any fandoms that you were a part of but then drifted away from? Do you remember why, or do you think you could still go back into that fandom like before?

 

Bookish Tags, Other

First Line Fridays: 19th May

Welcome to the new instalment of a new feature here at Ink Drops Books!

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?  If you want to make your own post, feel free to use or edit the banner above, and follow the rules below:

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

I’m hoping this is a way for me to get more excited about books I’ve put on my TBR shelf and forgotten about so this week I’ve randomly chosen among my unread books.

So, let’s begin.

At dusk they pour from the sky. They blow across the ramparts, turn cartwheels over rooftops, flutter into the ravines between houses. Entire streets swirl with them, flashing white against the cobbles. Urgent message to the inhabitants of this town, they say. Depart immediately to open country.

Do you have any idea what this book is?

Have you read it before?

Is it on your reading list too?

Keep scrolling to find out…

All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr

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Goodreads summary:

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, [Doerr] illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another.  

This book was pretty much everywhere when it first came out. I kept seeing it in bookshops and was drawn in by the stunning cover. I am really interested fiction set in the World Wars, in any format, whether book, film, or television series. I was even more intrigued to see the story being told about two children, even though this isn’t a children’s book.

Hopefully I get around to reading this book soon!

Book Reviews, Interviews, Other

Author Interview – Jaq Hazell

14042558Not long ago, I read and reviewed the brilliant novel My Life As A Bench (here). After that, I had the pleasure of corresponding with author Jaq Hazell online and even asking her a few questions. To celebrate the publication of My Life As A Bench earlier this week on May 2nd, below is the complete Q&A.

If you don’t know anything about My Life As A Bench, you can find some useful links at the end of this post!

 

Where did the idea for My Life as Bench come from?

Sounds mad, but a bench spoke to me. There are loads of memorial benches near where I live and I often pause and read the plaques. One day I was out with my dog when I imagined one of the benches complaining about being a bench. The voice was young, someone that wanted to be free and have a laugh.

Did Ren come to you as a fully-formed character, or did you spend a lot of time developing her personality and family situation?

It began as a 300-word story, so all I knew was that Ren was a teenager and wanted to hang with her mates and have fun. Ren’s background, her love of singing and the story of how she abruptly left her life in Devon to move to London all developed over a long period of time.

The novel is told from the perspective of Ren, but she is trapped inside a bench. Did you find this difficult and what were the biggest challenges?

It was difficult and I almost gave up at one point. The first draft didn’t work. I had to find a way to make Ren (who is dead) remain active. She had to want something and that triggered the idea about Ren learning to “break through” in order to talk to the living.

There are a lot of references to songs that Ren loves. Did music play a big role in the writing process?

I love music but can’t sing a note so it was fun to write about someone who has a talent for singing. Ren is a massive Amy Winehouse fan and I enjoyed researching the artists that inspired Amy, while also checking out more recent tracks that feature in the party scenes.

Do you have a favourite scene in My Life as a Bench?

I’m particularly fond of the character Lionel and I like it when he makes his entrance. Lionel wasn’t planned. I didn’t know he was there until he started to speak. I also like it when Ren tries to break through and talk to people that sit on the bench. We’re all hardwired to be frightened of ghosts, but maybe it’s really tough being a ghost.

Is there a particular message or lesson that you would like readers to take from this book?

I never write with any message or lesson in mind, but I suppose the message that Ren’s life and death conveys is that we should all grab life while we can and make the best of it.

How long did it take you to write My Life as a Bench and did you always know how the story would unfold?

It probably took a couple of years on and off. It’s hard to say because I did leave it alone for a while (as I rewrote my psychological thriller I Came to Find a Girl), and then I went back to it for yet another rewrite. I had a rough idea of the ending when I started, but the first draft bears little resemblance to the finished novel. Ren is dead but she’s still active. She can’t rest because there is something she wants.

What are the best and most challenging parts of being a writer?

There’s nothing better than a day when you feel your writing has gone well. Every novel is a challenge and they all present their own problems. Solutions to plot issues can’t be forced and if a novel has stalled it’s best to do something else – take the dog out or cook dinner. The answer will always arrive when you least expect it, perhaps while taking a shower or when you’re about to fall asleep.

When and where do you write?

I’m up early and out with my dog, Basil, and then it’s back to my extremely messy desk where I sit for most of the day. Eventually, Basil hassles me for a second walk and my family arrive home. I can, however, write pretty much anywhere – trains are good, and I often write if I’m stuck in the car waiting for one of my kids.

What five books would you take with you to a desert island?

I’d take Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte for its mad passion, atmosphere and gloomy weather to remind me of home. Solo Faces by James Salter is a novel about mountain climbing that could just as easily be about writing and I love his spare, deceptively-simple writing style. ‘I know a Man’ by Robert Creeley is my favourite poem and I’d take his collected poems to gain an overview of his work. I’m currently reading The Glorious Heresies by Lisa McInerney. It’s darkly funny and sweary and I’d take that along to finish and my last choice would be Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders. It’s only just come out and I’m curious to see his take on the afterlife – it has talking ghosts!

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Goodreads / Amazon / Waterstones 

Thanks so much to Jaq Hazell for answering these questions with so much thought and care. I really hope you all enjoyed reading this interview as much as I enjoyed being a part of it.

 

 

Bookish Tags, Other

T5W: Favorite SFF Cover Art

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Lainey of gingerreadslainey and is currently hosted by Sam of ThoughtsOnTomes. Every week, I will post my top 5 of that week’s theme. If you’d like to learn more about it or join in the fun, head over to the Goodreads group where all the discussions take place here.

This week’s topic is favourite Science Fiction & Fantasy cover art. Talking about book covers is one of my favourite topics, alongside the actual content of the books. Now, some of these books I’ve read, and some I haven’t but am hoping to. I’ve chosen these 5 purely for their looks – you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but let’s be honest, we’ve all done it.

1. Starflight – Melissa Landers

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I haven’t read a lot of science fiction novels, even though I love anything to do with space – something I am planning on fixing soon. This book cover perfectly captures everything that attracts me to science fiction. Jetting off to far off locations in a space ship, planets, stars, and probably some explosive drama along the way. I can’t wait to read this book.

2. Rebel of the Sands – Alwyn Hamilton

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This book is great inside as well as beautiful outside, but from when I saw this book on the shelves at the bookshop, I knew I wanted to see what was inside. I love the different tones of blue, and the gold foil on the pages reflects light and it’s just beautiful, and the way it all centres in on the landscape feels like it’s just drawing you in to the story.

You can read my review for Rebel of the Sands here.

3. The Raven Boys – Maggie Stiefvater 

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To be honest, I know very little about this book and the Raven Cycle series as a whole, but they are on my list of books to read. I don’t want to read them just because they’re beautiful – I’ve heard that this series is great – but that might be a part of it. I love the way that the images on the covers look very dark and ominous, but the little splash of colour makes me imagine that a lot of excitement lies within its covers.

4. The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstein

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I haven’t read this, but the cover makes me want to. Just like with The Raven Cycle’s book covers, I feel like the cover captures your imagination without you even needing to know anything about it. I love the Victorian-style silhouette images of the man and the woman, and the simple black and white design with that dash of red. It attracts both the fantasy lover and the history nerd in me to the story.

5. Naondel – Maria Turtschinanoff

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If you’ve been keeping up with my blog posts recently, you’ll have seen that I just can’t keep talking about Maria Turtschinanoff. Her book Maresi is one of my favourites, and I can’t wait to read the next in the Red Abbey Chronicles. Apart from the fact that I love her writing, this cover is flawless. I love the blue and white lines, and the ship mast that looks like a face. It’s so simple, and yet so striking.

Have you read any of these books yourself? What do you think of them? Comment below with your favourite science fiction and fantasy covers, or tell me if you’ve made your own #T5W list!