What can readers expect from Illuminate? What's it about?
Hi! Thanks so much for having me! Well, on the surface, ILLUMINATE is about a teen angel-in-training, who's forced to battle a pack of soul-stealing devils and ends up falling in love with one (of course!) But, there's so much more to it! I like to think what it's really about is a girl learning to have confidence in herself.
The Lexington Hotel, where most of the book takes place, is described with such breathtaking detail. How did you go about planning that out?
Thank you! I've always loved Chicago's wild history -- the Prohibition era, Capone and his gangster pals, and those amazing tunnels that ran beneath the city. I thought it would be tons of fun to resurrect the Lexington Hotel, which is no longer standing, and create a whole new world there. I did a lot of peeking into the hotel's past, looking at pictures, and I kept the façade and certain parts of it, but then I gave myself plenty of creative license to modernize it, make some fun changes and really make it my own!
You find out that you've been forced to choose a book and live in that world forever. Which book do you pick?
What a great question! I'd love to live in the world of Alice in Wonderland. That's always been a favorite of mine, it's just so wild and whimsical!
Which is easier for you to write -- dialogue or description?
Dialogue comes much easier to me than description, which might seem surprising since there's so much description in this book! But as a reader, I really love and appreciate descriptive writing, that's what truly makes me feel the world of whatever book I may be reading. It can make a book powerful and let it get in your head in the way that only a book can. So as a writer, it's important for me to push myself to do it well.
Who's your absolute favourite YA fictional boyfriend?
Oooh, this is fun. Let's see, I love Brendan Salinger of SPELLBOUND and SPELLCASTER by Cara Lynn Shultz. He's tall, dark and handsome, brooding, so sweetly protective of Emma, and just all-around dreamy. Sigh!
Illuminate deals with a struggle between good and evil. Can we expect to see this is a continuing trend in the next two books of the trilogy? (Please, feel free to reveal anything at all about Book 2 -- I can't wait!)
You'll definitely be seeing more good vs. evil in the next two books of the Gilded Wings trilogy! I'm polishing up Book Two now and all I'll say is that the gang heads to New Orleans to take on some new devils. Oh, and we haven't seen the last of Lucian! Stay tuned and check for updates on www.aimeeagresti.com!
Aimee's description of Illuminate is spot-on (and I guess she would know, being the author and all...) Haven grows so much and behind the whole soul trading business, it really is just a story about a girl discovering the awesome in herself. And oooh, Brendan <3 He's so sweet.
FREE BOOKS! FREE BOOKS! FREE BOOKS! FREE BOOKS!
Thanks to the absolutely AMAZING people at Thomas Allen & Son, I have FIVE copies of Illuminate to give away. Here are some guidelines:
- Open only to CANADIAN RESIDENTS (or if you have a Canadian address, that's cool) - sorry, everyone else!
- You have one week to claim your prize or I'm giving it away to someone else.
- Um. Have fun. And good luck! (Although I'm wishing everyone good luck, so I don't know how much good that does you)
There's a Rafflecopter form below (it won out over Google Docs on Twitter). I hope you can see it.