Monday, October 1, 2012

Big Thing Backwards

Last week I was tagged by Hart (link) and Stina (link) for the "Next Big Thing" blogfest. I'm to tell you what I'm working on and end by promoting something.

So I'm doing it backwards because I've got to tell you about a book I just finished: Never Gone by good bloggy friend Laurel Garver (link).

It is so good. The writing is gorgeous, the story is haunting (literally!) and it ends just perfectly. (*BIG sigh*) It's the perfect fall-into-winter book.

Get it!
Main character Danielle "Dani" has just lost her father in a horrible car accident. His body's been cremated, and she and his remains are being shipped off to England to stay with her paternal grandparents while her mother stays in the U.S. for work.

The problem is Dani keeps seeing her dad. 

Her memories and her desperate longing to catch him, which leads to some risky behavior choices, will have you in tears. But also, her strained relationship with her mother, and all the things Dani discovers about her family just peel away like layers of the most delicious cake. (Yep, I wrote that--LOL!)

And the ending with Theo, and what he writes on her cast... (*swoon*)

OK, I'm stopping, but it's an impressive debut. Only a few times I was a little confused or concerned with how situations were handled, but it didn't hinder my enjoyment.

There's a good dose of theology in the book courtesy Dani's grandfather, who's a clergyman. But also Theo, Dani's love interest is struggling with his own spirituality. I don't mind such things, and Laurel and I are planning a cross-post on how both of us incorporated religious themes in our books on Oct. 29. It should be interesting!

The English setting is the perfect backdrop for all the good stuff inside. Run get it on Amazon today (link)!

Now for the NBT blogfest questions! (I'll answer these lightening-round style.)

What is the working title of your book?

Violet. I know that's cheesy, but it's the sequel to Rouge, and for now, I'm trying to get the story right. I'll worry about titles later. (I have to do this; I'm hopeless when it comes to titles.)

Where did the idea come from for the book?

It's the sequel to Rouge, and Rouge is Oliver! meets Moulin Rouge meets My Fair Lady. (I know!)

What genre does your book fall under?

It's light historical/theater romance. Rouge was written as YA, but S&S asked if I'd make it adult. I said yes, but the characters are still 19 & 20 years old. So it's light-historical New Adult romance. Set in a theater. (*squee*!)

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

When I started writing in fall 2010, I had this whole cast of characters in mind, including Henry Cavill. But that was two years ago, and they've all aged and changed.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Rouge: Hale's trying to secure a proposal from Freddie so she can get Teeny (and herself) out of their cabaret-home that's growing more dangerous by the day; then she meets Beau.

(I can't talk about Violet without spoiling Rouge.)

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? 

This book is part of a three-book deal w/Simon & Schuster's Pocket Books.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I'm hoping it won't take me as long as Rouge, which took me three months. (*freaks out*)

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Not sure yet.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

I got super-selfish with this series. This is just the kind of lush escapism I love love love; so I wrote it for me. And I hope you all LOVE it, too--LOL!

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

I thought it was really cool that the television show Smash started after I finished Rouge, because that show (like my book) is all about what happens when the actors are off stage. The drama of real life, and how it bleeds into their performances.

What are you currently PROMOTING?

(see above)

Everybody's been so fantastic in helping me get my debut YA The Truth About Faking off the ground, I'm trying to pay it forward as much as possible. Love you guys!

Have a great week, reader- and writer-friends! I'm going to be everywhere with guest posts and reviews. I'm trying to tweet and Facebook updates as I get them. Please don't get sick of me! <3

OMG, I almost forgot! The whip-smart and super awesome Dr. Susan Kaye Quinn (link) has sold 10,000 copies of her book Open Minds (wow!) And to celebrate, she's giving away a Kindle Paperwhite and Free Books (WOW!), including The Truth About Faking!

Be sure and stop by her blog (link) tomorrow through Thurs. to enter, and good luck! <3


Jessica Bell said...

I just purchased this book today. I can't wait to read it. Laurel will be guest blogging for me in about a month, but I wanted to read the book before deciding on a topic :)

Sequel to Rouge, huh? Fun fun! ;-)

Laura Pauling said...

I'm looking forward to reading Laurel's book. And the concept of Rouge sounds neat. I hadn't realized they asked you to make it adult. Neat.

Sarah said...

Henry Cavill *sigh*

Sorry, that completely threw me off. What were you saying?

Oh! Congrats again on Rouge. I love what you said about why you wrote it--that's why I write books, too. Pretty much the only reason. I write things in which I can lose myself, and all I can do is hope others will want to as well. That makes me all the more excited to read Rouge, Leigh!

Natalie Aguirre said...

So excited for you Leigh. Awesome you have a 3 book deal with S&S. I can't believe you can write a draft in 3 months. You're definitely productive.

S.A. Larsenッ said...

I love how you handled this post! So wonderful, and that books sounds awesome!!

Stina said...

I also love how you did this post, Leigh. One reason I bought (and loved) TTAF is because you pay it forward on your blog. And those books ended up on my iPod. :D

Bish Denham said...

I'm looking forward to reading her book too. Nice review.

Pat Hatt said...

Love love love huh? Nothing wrong with that haha nice mixture of movies there too.

Laurel Garver said...

Wow, thanks for the awesome review, Leigh!! I'll be featuring TTAF tomorrow! Woot!

And I'm eagerly anticipating ROUGE. Interesting that you had to age up the characters. I guess that's because historical is more popular with adult readers currently? And yay for the New Adult category. I think the readership is just waiting for this niche to be filled! Wishing you the best with penning your sequel too!

Old Kitty said...

Violet? Rouge? Wonderful!!! Good luck gorgeous LTM!! Yay!! Take care

Lydia Kang said...

You're welcome! Violet sounds like the perfect title for a Rouge sequel!

Summer Ross said...

The books sounds interesting. Thanks for telling us about them- I'll look into Laurel's. Violet sounds like an amazing sequel. I hope you have a terrific week.

Janet Johnson said...

So fun to hear about Violet! And Rouge vicariously. :) I love your setting. There's just something about the theater, no?

And yay for Laurel! I got to critique a first chapter for her way back when, but her writing is just gorgeous, like you said. Need to read this!

Congrats to Susan, too! 10,000 copies! SO COOL!

cleemckenzie said...

Congrats on your book deal. That is wonderful. As to being selfish I think authors should indulge themselves whenever possible.

Here's to a major success for you.

Carolyn Abiad said...

Can't wait for VIOLET. :)

And Congrats to Susan on 10,000 copies sold. That's wonderful!

M Pax said...

Can't get sick of hearing from you, Leigh. The new series sounds really awesome.

Jemi Fraser said...

I have your book and Laurel's waiting on my Kindle. Now that Sept is done, I'm really hoping for some more reading time!!!! :)

N. R. Williams said...

Hello girl
Actually 3 months isn't bad at all. Good luck with everything. I have an e-reader on my wish list so I can catch up with you all.

Theresa Milstein said...

Wonderful to hear more about Laurel's book. Glad to know a blogging buddy is such a talented author.

Anonymous said...

CONGRATS! Fun way to do your post. : )

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

Laurel's book sounds awesome! And thank you for the shout-out. :)

Ciara said...

Yikes, I forgot I was tagged, too. Laurel's book sounds great. The new series sounds awesome!

Hart Johnson said...

Oh, Never Gone sounds great, and I'm so excited for you about your series.

LTM said...

@Carolyn--I can't wait for me to sit down and write it--eep! And yes, BIG hooray for Susan. She deserves every bit! :D

@Susanne--Thanks, honey! :o) <3

@Ciara--No worries! Thanks for spreading the love~ <3

Lisa Gail Green said...

Congrats again! What an awesome deal. It sounds like a great book. I used to act, so I'm doubly intrigued. :D

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

hehe I think we all need to get "super selfish" when it comes to writing the stories that are set in our hearts.

Ella said...

Oh Henry...oops!
I loved your insight~ Huge Smash fan...sounds so fun!
Congrats Leigh!!! <3 555
Can't wait to read it~