Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Published on November 1st 2016
Genres: Dystopia, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Format: Audiobook, eBook, Hardcover
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A Diabolic is ruthless. A Diabolic is powerful. A Diabolic has a single task: Kill in order to protect the person you’ve been created for.
Nemesis is a Diabolic, a humanoid teenager created to protect a galactic senator’s daughter, Sidonia. The two have grown up side by side, but are in no way sisters. Nemesis is expected to give her life for Sidonia, and she would do so gladly. She would also take as many lives as necessary to keep Sidonia safe.
When the power-mad Emperor learns Sidonia’s father is participating in a rebellion, he summons Sidonia to the Galactic court. She is to serve as a hostage. Now, there is only one way for Nemesis to protect Sidonia. She must become her. Nemesis travels to the court disguised as Sidonia—a killing machine masquerading in a world of corrupt politicians and two-faced senators’ children. It’s a nest of vipers with threats on every side, but Nemesis must keep her true abilities a secret or risk everything.
As the Empire begins to fracture and rebellion looms closer, Nemesis learns there is something more to her than just deadly force. She finds a humanity truer than what she encounters from most humans. Amidst all the danger, action, and intrigue, her humanity just might be the thing that saves her life—and the empire.
What do you find hardest to write, first or last line? Why?
The first. Beginnings are the trickiest part for me. They require the most work, the most rewriting, whereas endings I have down solid long before I reach them. The stories where I don’t know the endings long in advance tend to be the stories I lose interest in and fail to finish.
Let’s talk character names. How do you go about selecting names for characters in your book? Do the names you pick have any significance to you, or do you ever feel inspired by a name?
With INSIGNIA, after the first book, I had a list of names I read in various news articles and selected from there. With THE DIABOLIC, I just went with things that ‘sounded right’ to me. Since the inspiration was I, CLAUDIUS, I sort of had this pseudo-Roman esque thing in my mind, but really, this is set thousands of years in the future so I figure any future language will be a combination of everything we speak, favoring a few currently dominant languages (such as English and Mandarin?), so whatever I make up should just be easy for me to remember, and for a reader to read without stumbling over it.
Weird stuff can happen with character names, though! My whole INSIGNIA series was anti-surveillance state, etc. I had a character named Snowden who became a lot more prominent in the second book than he’d been in the first (drew the name from one of my favorite books: CATCH-22)– and one month after the second book came out, the whole Edward Snowden surveillance stuff happened in real life. Funny timing.
How do you plot your books? Do you find that your plot changes as you write or does it stay close to how you plan it?
I am a plotter. I envision all the critical scenes well ahead of time, and I have to know very early on how I want to end the story. However, I do maintain flexibility. Sometimes, things that work in my head simply do not pan out on paper, so I make changes in that case.
Do you have a favorite place to write? Tell us about it?
Right now, my favorite place is Panera. It used to be Peet’s Coffee, but the local place grew too crowded. I don’t like writing anywhere so packed, people are glaring at me for taking up the table, or where I feel someone can see over my shoulder. Iced coffee + Panera + table + not too many people about = best place to write. Oh, and I’ve got to be up at 8:30 AM and out of the house within an hour or two, or I just won’t get into the groove of it.
If you could use three words to describe your books, what would they be?
(I’ll flatter myself here:) Twisty, entertaining, satisfying.
What are 3 things on your bucket list?
1) Go to space
2) Interact with a chimpanzee and/or gorilla
3) Go to the A’s: Australia, Antarctica, Alaska
What is something you never leave home without?
My cell phone. I’ve become completely psychologically dependent on it. Now whenever I realize I don’t have it, I grow terrified I will get in a serious car accident and be unable to call anyone.
What are 3 words you’d use to describe yourself?
Introspective, silly, neurotic.
Do you have a favorite hobby/pastime?
Artsy, crafty stuff provided it is not too messy and doesn’t require too much clean up. I love to do things with my hands, especially with something on the TV or Netflix. My attention span cannot focus on just one or the other.
Do you have a hidden talent?
I can raise one eyebrow at a time. On both eyebrows. I taught myself how to do this in elementary school because I loved Star Trek. And yes, I was a dork.
Sunrise or sunset?
Hard to say. I am really not a morning person so sunrise generally means I have been awake all night, which is never good for getting back into routine… Having said that, if I am up early, sunrise is awesome because it’s just beginning of the day, rather than the ending of it. Having said that, where I am, sunsets are absolutely gorgeous over the water. Sunrise is ‘meh’ in comparison. On the east coast, it would likely be the opposite.
Hot or cold?
Cold! Oh, I cannot bear hot. I get miserable when I’m too cold for too long, as, uh, all human beings do, and in those times when the ice seeps into my bones and won’t leave, I think perhaps I like hot after all, but really– it’s easier to deal with cold than hot for me. Hot and I just can’t breathe.
Autumn or spring?
Autumn. Love the leaves changing colors and the feel in the air.
Ebook or print book?
It depends. If it’s a mystery, and it’s interesting enough, then I will inevitably wish to flip forward and see how it ends before proceeding further (it’s terrible, I know). So print book works for that. Then again, I move a lot. Since I do that, ebook is a bit more convenient.
FOLLOW THE TOUR!
10/24: YA Bibliophile – Review
10/26: Reader Rising – Review
10/27: What Sarah Read – Mood Board
10/31: No BS Book Reviews – Q&A
11/1: In Wonderland – Review
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