Author: Mary E. Pearson
Release Date: August 2, 2016
Hardcover: 688 pages
Lia and Rafe have escaped Venda and the path before them is winding and dangerous - what will happen now? This third and final book in The Remnant Chronicles is not to be missed.
Bestselling author Mary E. Pearson's combination of intrigue, suspense, romance and action make this a riveting page turner for teens.
Now on to the interview!
Hi Mary! First I want to say welcome to Two Chicks on Books! THE REMNANT CHRONICLES series is a personal favorite of mine and I can’t wait to see how it all ends! And am so happy that you could stop by for a visit!
Thanks for having me Jaime!!
For the readers: can you give us a little series recap?
Ha! A little series recap would take me pages! But luckily there are great sites like Recapitans, that give fairly detailed recaps of books you’ve read. But be warned: Do not read these recaps if you haven’t read the books yet! They are full of spoilers and only meant to refresh your memory if you’ve already read the books.
Here is the recap for The Kiss of Deception:
Another useful site is Book Series Recaps. Here’s the recap for The Heart of Betrayal:
Of course, even recaps can’t capture every important detail—and I load a lot of significant details into the stories—so if the story is fairly hazy in your head, I recommend a reread.
Were any of the characters in the books inspired by people from your real life?
Yes, all of them in bits and pieces. Lia is a combination of a lot of girls and women I have known—strong, fierce, with a definite mind of her own.
Who was your favorite character to write? What about your least favorite?
The three main characters were my favorites—I loved switching between the three—but if I look at the secondary characters, I loved writing Pauline. She was so different from Lia but very strong in her own ways. In The Heart of Betrayal, I had so much fun writing the Komizar. He dripped with voice, and attitude, and confidence. When he was in a room, you knew it. And I loved he contradictions in him, brutal and humane. He was an interesting character to write. Oh, and Aster! I loved her. In the last book there were some favorites too, but I don’t want to give too much away, but I will say, I loved writing Rafe’s men, Sven, Tavish, Orrin, and Jeb. My heart squeezes when I think about them.
As for least favorites, I really hated him, but writing about Malich was still intriguing and he always upped the conflict temperature whenever he was in a scene.
What is your favorite passage in each book?
Hm, let me see. I don’t think I have one absolute favorite, but here are a few that I really like. This passage from The Kiss of Deception comes on the heels of a devastating loss for Lia. She is numb and it seems drained of caring anymore—but compassion still resides deep within her and it is awakened when Eben’s horse falls to the ground and he is ordered to kill it. We knew she was strong when she dug graves for those she loved, but I think this scene brought that strength to a new level when she showed compassion for Eben, seeing him as a frightened boy instead of as the enemy.
I whipped around and spat. “Ena fikatande spindo keechas! Fikat ena shu! Ena mizak teevas ba betaro! Jabavé!” I turned back to Eben and he inhaled a sharp breath when I snatched the sheathed knife from him and pulled the blade free. A dozen bows were raised and arrows drawn by onlooking soldiers, all aimed at me. “Have you said goodbye to Spirit yet?” I asked Eben.
He looked at me, his eyes glassy. “You know his name?”
“I heard you whisper it in camp. They were wrong, Eben,” I said, tossing my head in the direction of the others. “There is no shame in naming a horse.”
He bit his lower lip and nodded. “Then turn around,” I ordered. “You don’t have to do this.”
I talked a little about this passage from The Heart of Betrayal on Stacee’s blog in July, and how I like how Lia makes her thoughts known in no uncertain terms to Griz, a giant of a man who towers over her in no uncertain terms. It could almost be considered a mission statement for all three novels.
I walked up to Griz and poked him in the chest. “Let me make this perfectly clear to you. Though some might seek to make it appear otherwise, I am not a bride to be bartered away to another kingdom, nor a prize of war, nor a mouthpiece for your Komizar. I am not a chip in a card game to be mindlessly tossed into the center of the pot, nor one to be kept in the tight fist of a greedy opponent. I am a player seated at the table alongside everyone else, and from this day forward I will play my own hand as I see fit. Do you understand me? Because the consequences could be ugly if someone thought otherwise.”
For The Beauty of Darkness I will have to avoid a passage that is spoilerish, but this one doesn’t give much away. Here, Lia is in an old abandoned cottage in the woods, reflecting on some names carved in the door, and thinking about how a life can turn out so differently that what you planned:
Even my father’s name was carved here. Branson. I ran my fingers over the rough letters. It was hard to imagine that he’d ever been a carefree child running through the woods, and I wondered at the way we all change, all the outside forces that press and mold and push us into people and things we hadn’t planned to be. Maybe it happened so gradually that by the time we noticed, it was too late to be anything else.
I like this passage because Lia looks at the many shades of change—some we may bring about ourselves, but some creeps up slowly and quietly and we don’t even know we’ve been trapped by it.
What inspired you to write YA?
I think the teenage experience is fascinating! Big things happen at this stage or our lives. It is the first time we are making adult decisions that may affect us for the rest of our lives. Life-changing decisions.
Another plus is that novels are based on conflict—that’s what makes the pages turn—and the teen years are ripe with potential conflict as teens test waters they haven’t dipped their toes into before. I have a lot of patience for a teen heroine who makes a bad choice but not so much for an adult who should know better or who screws up over and over again. A teen is trying to grow up whereas some adults refuse to.
And I have to say, I love reading YA books myself. They are surprising, twisty, fascinating, and written with beautiful prose, pace, plot, and characters. It is a natural fit to want to write the kind of books that I love.
Lightning Round Questions
What are you reading right now? Or what do you have on your TBR that you’re dying to read?
Right now I am halfway through All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (wonderful!) and on my very tall TBR pile I am dying to get to Bone Gap by Laura Ruby and A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas.
What Hogwarts House would the Sorting Hat place you in?
Hufflepuff. Family comes first, and I am quite loyal.
Twitter or Facebook?
Both, because sometimes we are short winded and other times we need more than 140 characters. Variety is the spice of social media.
She’s not a comic superhero, but one who makes me cheer wildly: Brienne of Tarth.
Favorite TV show?
I have so many favorites but one I would claw my way home to watch: Game of Thrones.
Sweet or Salty?
I have a terrible sweet tooth—especially when it comes to ice cream.
Spiders. I literally just shivered writing that word. I don’t mind if they stay outside, but I really don’t like it when they enter my domain. Cue in hunter stance and raised shoe.
Song you can’t get enough of right now?
Remedy by Adele. It’s feeding a lot of inspiration right now.
Movie you’re most looking forward to?
Right now I am looking forward to the newest Meryl Streep movie, Florence Foster Jenkins, coming out in August. I love Meryl Streep!
Thanks so much Mary for answering my questions! I can’t wait for everyone to read THE BEAUTY OF DARKNESS!
Thanks so much for letting me stop by, Jaime!!
Grab the books on the series!