Rockstar Book Tours Blog Tour, Interview, & Giveaway: ALLY (Anna Banks)
NYT Bestselling YA author of The Syrena Legacy series: OF POSEIDON (2012), OF TRITON (2013), OF NEPTUNE (2014).
Repped by rockstar Lucy Carson of the Friedrich Agency.
I live with my husband and daughter in the Florida Panhandle. I have a southern accent compared to New Yorkers, and I enjoy food cooked with real fat. I can’t walk in high heels, but I’m very good at holding still in them. If you put chocolate in front of me, you must not have wanted it in the first place.
Shatter Me, Cinder, Linger, Shiver, Forever, Pushing the Limits, Unravel Me,Shadow and Bone, Enclave, Divergent, Candor, Graceling, Fire, The Hunger Games Trilogy, The Host, Most of James Patterson, and Janet Evanovich makes me laugh through my nose in an unfeminine sort of way.
Princess Sepora of Serubel and King Tarik of Theoria have formed an uneasy truce between their kingdoms since the deadly plague began to rip through Theoria. Since their feelings for each other are entangled in politics and power, they must use their own trusted resources to find common ground.
But when traitors with powerful allies arise from unexpected places, Tarik and Sepora face challenges that will change both of their kingdoms forever. Will they learn whom to trust—including each other—in time to save their kingdoms, their relationship and even their lives?
The princess didn't expect to fall in love--with her nemesis.
Princess Sepora of Serubel is the last Forger in all the five kingdoms. The spectorium she creates provides energy for all, but now her father has found a way to weaponize it, and his intentions to incite war force her to flee from his grasp. She escapes across enemy lines into the kingdom of Theoria, but her plans to hide are thwarted when she is captured and placed in the young king's servitude.
Tarik has just taken over rulership of Theoria, and must now face a new plague sweeping through his kingdom and killing his citizens. The last thing he needs is a troublesome servant vying for his attention. But mistress Sepora will not be ignored. When the two finally meet face-to-face, they form an unlikely bond that complicates life in ways neither of them could have imagined.
Sepora's gift could save Tarik's kingdom from the Quiet Plague. But should she trust her growing feelings for her nemesis, or should she hide her gifts at all costs?
~ Interview ~
YABC: What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
I know it might sound cliché, but it came to me in a dream. I know, I KNOW how that sounds! But I’m actually a very vivid dreamer every single night. Most of my books come from dreams in one way or another. The dream for NEMESIS was recurring that happened whenever I listened to romantic music before bed (or read a romance novel, which BTW is my favorite kind of de-stress reading). One time, when I woke up, I remembered enough to analyze what was happening while I slept. A girl and guy were enemies, but completely perfect for each other. They wanted each other badly. She had been captured by his kingdom (but in the dream they were both very skilled warriors) and she intrigued him greatly, and they fought ALL the time, which of course I find ravenously romantic lol. I realized that the dreams took place in a huge palace, and I decided to take on Ancient Egypt, because of my fascination with it since childhood. So I binge-watched loads of documentaries. Bought a precise crap-ton of books. All of that just to tweak it to suit my own purposes, lol!
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
Sethos is my favorite character, because he provides a bit of comic relief. Plus, his moral compass is questionable, which I love writing; he’s very “Your opinion is right as long as it’s the same as my opinion.” He doesn’t take no for an answer. And he’s sarcastic. Not sure where he gets that from.
YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?
Oooooh, the title! I was still tossing and turning at night with this dream when I came up with this title and thought, “What a great book title! Now, where’s my story?”
YABC: What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
I’m proud of every single scene where Tarik and Sepora don’t kiss, because I’m that person who always reads books and wants to push their faces together! So, it takes a measure of restraint not to actually put their faces together. However, I may or may not have some very steamy deleted scenes!
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
That you can’t please everyone, so don’t try. Your book, your writing style, your voice, your plot—someone somewhere will hate it. And you have to be okay with yourself when that happens. At the end of the day, you’ve got to do your best, and hope that you please more people than you piss off.
YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?
Ummmm, it’s freaking gold! They bought all this special paper that has real 14 karat gold flecks in it just for the covers! No, just kidding. But I do love the gold, and the way Tarik is depicted in this Egyptian style tone. Also, the cover for NEMESIS actually changed to match the hardcover for ALLY—and I love that cover too!
YABC: What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2017?
Daughter of the Siren Queen!!! I have an ARC and am reading it right now and OMG!!!
YABC: What was your favorite book in 2016?
There were so many, but I have to say Daughter of the Pirate King. Sorry not sorry.
YABC: What’s up next for you?
So, I’m co-writing this YA with a friend of mine called ALT. It’s X-Men meets today’s political climate and so far we’re pretty much covering a chapter every other day. It’s amazing how co-writing motivates you beyond your normal comfort zone. Also, I’ve got a humorous middle grade series I’m tweaking with my agent for submission.
YABC: Is there anything that you would like to add?
I like big butts and I cannot lie?
YABC: Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
There is a certain scene in which I cried while writing in ALLY. It was difficult because I put myself in Sepora’s shoes and—that’s all I can really say.
YABC: Which character gave you the most trouble when writing your latest book?
Can I say they all put me through hell? In ALLY, I introduce a whole new cast of characters, and developing them through the space of one book is really difficult. It took periods of layered editing and revising to get them ironed out into something I could live with.
YABC: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
I love the drafting part best because you have all the creative power at your fingertips. There’s nothing holding you back. It’s very liberating. I will say though that there is magic in revising. Guys. Always edit and revise. It’s painful, I know, but your novel will be SO much better.
YABC: What would you say is your superpower?
So, I’m an introvert. I’m an INTJ. I shy away from intimate conversation, and I hate group gatherings, projects, etc. HOWEVER. Put me on a stage and in front of a crowd (a big crowd, not a small intimate gathering) and I’m a psycho extrovert. I don’t know what happens. I. Can’t. Shut. My. Mouth.
YABC: Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
There’s an animal rescue here locally called Alaqua Animal Refuge. They’re a no-kill shelter, which is important to me, and they rescue all sorts of animals not just dogs or cats. Here is the link to their website: https://www.alaqua.org/
(The exclusive pieces of art below were designed specifically for Ally by David North)
By: Anna Banks
Publishing Date: October 3rd, 2017
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
12 winners will receive a complete set of the exclusive pieces of art created for the series by David North (the images revealed during each tour stop)
~ US Only ~
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*
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