Monday, July 11, 2011

Interview with Kelley Armstrong + INTERNATIONAL Giveaway

I'm a huge fan of Kelley Armstrong's Darkest Powers and Darkness Rising trilogies- with supernatural powers and genetic engineering in one go, what's not to love for a fantasy lover and major biogeek like me? Most of all, I love the way her characters develop throughout a series, and for our female protagonists, that means acquiring some serious girl power! I'm excited to have Kelley here today to talk about her books, give us a girl power book recommendation, and to indulge my geeky side. Stick around for a giveaway of her first YA novel, The Summoning!

1. Do you draw on real life mythology when writing the paranormal abilities featured in your Otherworld universe? What about when writing The Gathering, where Native American lore is a strong theme?

Yes, it’s all based in folklore. I immerse myself in the stories and the variations, then pick and choose which variations I want to use for my own “brand” of that supernatural type.

2. Your YA series has one foot in fantasy and the other in science fiction. As a complete bio-geek, I have to ask—did you ever sit down and figure out the genetics of the characters’ paranormal abilities as far as inheritance patterns are concerned?

I did with the adult series (which uses the same world-building). Someone who knows a lot more about biology than I do helped me with the genetics. Sadly, all those notes are lost, though, and I’m left with just the basic “rules” that I retained in my head, such as knowing that, according to what we worked out, genetic female werewolves are statistically possible, but would be so rare that werewolves would think “it never happens.”

3. Chloe and Maya have very different personalities, although they both have a lot of inner strength. Chloe changed a lot throughout the series—in The Summoning she was fairly shy, and by The Reckoning she’d really started to grow into her powers and stick up for herself more often. We’ve only seen the first book of Maya’s trilogy, but she’s already pretty good at looking after herself and dishing out sass when necessary. Was it challenging to move from writing Chloe to writing Maya, and despite our first glance, does Maya still have a bit of growing up to do?

I wanted to make sure that Maya wasn’t a clone of Chloe. My adult series uses changing narrators, so that part was easy for me. While Maya is more capable of handling herself, her confidence leads her to make snap judgements, which she has to work on. Also, she’ll need to deal with the strain of being a natural leader—there will be times when she’s in no shape to take responsibility for the safety of her friends, but she has to, because they expect her to take charge.

4. Even if you don’t write with a specific message in mind, what do you hope that girls will take away from reading your books?

I think one thing that paranormal YA shows is that it’s okay—even good—to be different. It might make life tougher, but it will ultimately be more rewarding.

5. Do you think it’s important for girls to have strong role models in literature?

Definitely. And by “strong role model” I don’t mean kick-ass super-girls. I mean capable and resourceful girls. Strong characters can certainly start off lost and overwhelmed, but don’t say “I can’t handle this” and give up. They deal with the problems as best they can and discover their own skills and abilities. That’s the kind of role models all kids—boys and girls—need to see.

6. Finally, what’s your favorite girl-power read—and why?

There are a lot of modern ones, and if I pick one, I’ll leave out other great choices ☺ So I’ll go with a classic: Anne of Green Gables. Anne was a great heroine. She was spirited and intelligent, creative and caring, but she was far from perfect.

I think you hit the nail on the head with question 5! Thank you so much for participating!

Kelley Armstrong is the author of the Otherworld and Nadia Stafford series. Her YA series is set in the Otherworld Universe and is made up by the Darkest Powers and Darkness Rising trilogies. Her next YA book, The Calling, is out in April 2012. Find out more through Kelley's website, twitter, and facebook pages. 

To win a copy of The Summoning, fill in the form below before the 25th of July! The giveaway is open internationally to countries shipped to by Book Depository. Good luck!



  1. Absolutely, I love the answer for number 5 because it's so true... definitely what I believe. There are so many ways to be strong, and I think believing in yourself and being willing to work hard are some of the most important ways.

  2. I really enjoyed the interview and post. Your books look great.


  3. thanks for the giveaway, i would love to read this book

  4. I agree with Kelley! Anne rocks!

    Love her!


  5. Thank you so much for the chance to win!

  6. Thank you for the generous giveaway!
    I'm looking forward to read any of Kelley's books.

  7. Thanks for the giveaway! love this book!

  8. Ohhh this book has been on my wishlist for some time now, so thanks for the chance!

  9. "Anne of Green Gables" such a classic. I have not read that in years.


  10. I'd heard about these books but haven't gotten around to reading them yet... will keep them in mind :)

    thanks for the giveaway!


  11. Thanks to both of you! And thanks for making it international :D



  12. Thank you so much for this awesome giveaway!


  13. I've always wanted to read The Summoning. I can't wait to read about the girl power within!

  14. Great questions!! Love the answers, too. I totally agree with the need for strong female literary role models.

  15. Great interview! I love her answer for the question #4.
    Thanks a lot for giveaway!

  16. Thanks for the giveaway! This book has been on my wishlist for a while :)

  17. Amazing giveaway! I have been wanting to read this for a while.

  18. Thanks for the giveaway! I really want to read this book! :)

  19. I loved the darkest powers trilogy and the gathering did not dissapoint. Kelly Amrstrong is an excellent author. Great review and giveaway.
    Jennifer K Jovus
    kjovus at gmail dot com

  20. Thank you for the giveaway. I've heard this series is amazing but haven't read them

  21. Thanks for the chance! Hope I get to read it :)

  22. I enjoy the post and thanks for the giveaway :)

  23. Thank you so much for the international giveaway!





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