Author Chat with Victoria Lee (The Fever King), Plus Giveaway!
Today we're excited to chat with Victoria Lee author of The Fever King.
Read on for more about Victoria, an interview, plus an giveaway!
Meet Victoria Lee!
Victoria Lee grew up in Durham, North Carolina, where she spent twelve ascetic years as a vegetarian before discovering that spicy chicken wings are, in fact, a delicacy. She’s been a state finalist competitive pianist, a hitchhiker, a pizza connoisseur, an EMT, an expat in China and Sweden, and a science doctoral student. She’s also a bit of a snob about fancy whiskey. Lee writes early in the morning and then spends the rest of the day trying to impress her border collie puppy and make her experiments work. She currently lives in Pennsylvania with her partner.
Meet The Fever King!
In the former United States, sixteen-year-old Noam Álvaro wakes up in a hospital bed, the sole survivor of the viral magic that killed his family and made him a technopath. His ability to control technology attracts the attention of the minister of defense and thrusts him into the magical elite of the nation of Carolinia.
The son of undocumented immigrants, Noam has spent his life fighting for the rights of refugees fleeing magical outbreaks—refugees Carolinia routinely deports with vicious efficiency. Sensing a way to make change, Noam accepts the minister’s offer to teach him the science behind his magic, secretly planning to use it against the government. But then he meets the minister’s son—cruel, dangerous, and achingly beautiful—and the way forward becomes less clear.
Caught between his purpose and his heart, Noam must decide who he can trust and how far he’s willing to go in pursuit of the greater good.
~ Author Chat ~
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
This is a hard one! I love Noam, obviously—I mean, he’s the main character—but if I’m brutally honest, Dara is my favorite. He represents so much of what I was trying to say with this book. I relate a lot to his experiences, and honestly I just want him to be happy.
YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?
The novel definitely came first! I’m terrible with titles. I came up with the title as late in the game as I possibly could, but I ended up loving it a lot. I was lucky my publisher liked it, too, or else I would’ve had to come up with something else and that would probably have taken another year or two.
YABC: What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
There’s this one dinner party scene where every one of the major player characters is present and you get to see all these conflicting schemes and agendas and motivations intersect—and there’s a lot more stuff going on beneath the surface too that the reader doesn’t learn about until later, and a lot of emotions rising to the surface and influencing the scene. The scene itself does a lot of work in terms of foreshadowing and tension and setting the stage for reveals later on. So I’m pretty proud of it.
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
Writing is rewriting.
I used to tell myself I wrote these really clean, beautiful first drafts. It was such a bald-faced lie. I think I never even fully understand what story I’m trying to tell until after I’ve finished a couple versions of a book. I’ve learned to get comfortable with revision and rewriting and using them as tools to discover the best possible version of the story I’m telling.
YABC: What’s up next for you?
I have a couple books that I’m working on at the moment! One is a dark academic fantasy for adult readers. Another is a YA literary thriller with sapphic murder girls. I’d also love to write more in the universe of The Fever King, particularly about Ames.
YABC: Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
There’s a scene where one character finally, finally confesses a secret to another character that was so difficult to write because I knew how difficult it was for the first character to admit this out loud. And how much that character was risking by voicing it—the very real possibility that it would end badly. Knowing that having-told this secret in the past ended badly.
YABC: Which character gave you the most trouble when writing your latest book?
I had a really hard time writing the villain! They’re a complicated character with a lot of layers, and I wanted to do justice both to the character themselves but also to their victims. It was a careful balancing act of making them seem human and multi-faceted while not erasing their crimes.
YABC: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
I always prefer the part of the writing process I’m not currently enmeshed in. But…if I’m brutally objective, I think I prefer drafting. You get to explore all these characters’ emotions for the first time when you’re drafting—you still get to surprise yourself with the way a scene might take an unexpected turn, or fall in love with a new character. But I do like revising, too. There’s something nice about fiddling with a scene or a character arc and whittling it down to its heart and making it as strong as it can possibly be.
YABC: Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
As a teen, I was hospitalized at UNC Hospitals for anorexia. The hospitalization coincided with my testimony in the trial against my abuser—I would have to leave the hospital to attend depositions only to come back to a different struggle against my eating disorder and mental illness. But UNC Hospitals has an amazing program called the Beacon Program, which exists to provide support to patients who have been victims or survivors of abuse and violence. They were an immense help to me during this time and I am passionate about supporting them—and any similar programs at other state hospitals.
To read more about the Beacon Program, or to donate, see here: https://www.med.unc.edu/beacon/
The Fever King
By: Victoria Lee
Publisher: Skyscape Publishing
Release Date: March 1st, 2019
One winner will receive a copy of The Fever King (Victoria Lee) ~ US Only
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*
The cover is beautiful, so colorful. I love reading about the struggle between what is best and what is right, so I'm excited to dive into this one.