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Author News & Interviews

Author Talk: Gabrielle Zevin, author of The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

Apr 3, 2014

Gabrielle Zevin is the author of award-winning books for young adults, including MEMOIRS OF A TEENAGE AMNESIAC and ELSEWHERE. Her latest novel for adults, THE STORIED LIFE OF A.J. FIKRY, is about a bookseller and collector who, after a series of tragic and disappointing events, is slowly but surely isolating himself from all the people around him. But when a mysterious package appears at his bookstore, it gives A.J. the opportunity to make his life over and the ability to see everything anew.

In this interview that originated from Bookselling This Week (a dedicated section of BookWeb.org), Zevin talks about how this book was inspired by the “trauma of getting published at 27,” and how the publishing world is different in real life than it appears in the movies (hint: There’s a way larger cast of supporting characters). She also discusses why bookstores are so beloved, why she chose to feature short stories in her novel, how risky it was to write a book about the book community --- and how lucky she feels to have its support.

Interview: Jean Hanff Korelitz, author of You Should Have Known

Mar 20, 2014

Jean Hanff Korelitz is the author of a book of poems and four previous novels, including ADMISSION, which was adapted into a movie starring Tina Fey. Her latest work of fiction, YOU SHOULD HAVE KNOWN, revolves around Grace Reinhart Sachs, who is the author of a self-help book, You Should Have Known. When a disastrous series of events occurs weeks before the book’s publication, Grace must create a new life for her child and herself. In this interview with Bookreporter.com’s Norah Piehl, Korelitz talks about labeling her fiction as “cultural commentary” and researching self-help culture. She also explains her fascination with the dating phenomenon of “unknowing” your partner’s potentially irreconcilable quirks as you’re falling in love, how living in Manhattan has changed over the past 25 years, and why writing is easier in New Jersey.

Interview: Nickolas Butler, author of Shotgun Lovesongs

Mar 13, 2014

SHOTGUN LOVESONGS is the debut novel of Nickolas Butler, whose writing has appeared in Narrative Magazine, Ploughshares, The Christian Science Monitor and elsewhere. Along the way, he has worked as a telemarketer, a coffee roaster, a meatpacker, an innkeeper (twice), a liquor store clerk, an office manager, a hot dog vendor, and an author escort. SHOTGUN LOVESONGS is the story of four friends who were all born and raised in the same Wisconsin town, and the powerful, tensile bond of their friendship --- held together by the inescapable pull of home.

In this interview with Bookreporter.com’s Jennifer Romanello, Butler talks about the inspiration behind Little Wing, the town at the heart of the novel --- a setting that is so seamlessly integrated into the plot that it’s almost its own character. He also reveals why he decided to tell the story from multiple perspectives, the paradox of celebrity, and what he’s working on next.

Author Talk: Isla Morley, author of Above

Mar 7, 2014

Isla Morley is the author of the award-winning novel COME SUNDAY. Her latest book, ABOVE, is the haunting story of teenager Blythe Hallowell, who is abducted and locked away in an abandoned missile silo. Blythe has to deal with crushing loneliness, the terrifying madness of her captor, and the persistent temptation to give up. Nothing, however, prepares her for the burden of having to raise a child in confinement. In this interview, Morley talks about her decision to add the challenge of raising a child in captivity to Blythe’s already harrowing situation, taking scenes out of her book that she felt were too disturbing, and why forgiveness is so important --- even in the face of the greatest wrong done. Post-apocalyptic fiction is all the rage these days, and she also offers up an explanation as to why readers seem to be so fascinated by it.

Author Talk: Carol Cassella, author of Gemini

Mar 7, 2014

Carol Cassella is a practicing anesthesiologist and the bestselling author of OXYGEN and HEALER. Her latest novel, GEMINI, is about ICU doctor Charlotte Reese, who finds her morals challenged when an unconscious Jane Doe is placed in her care. Charlotte’s search for the identity of the woman reveals links between herself and her patient, and the repercussions will forever change her life. In this interview, Cassella shares how her experience as a medical professional informs her writing, why the best part of medicine is the mystery, and some of the moral and ethical issues doctors face every day. She also outlines in generous detail her ideal writing life (versus the reality!) and explains why she hopes her own books will resonate with readers for longer than the time it takes to read them.