Along with doing the review of Silver Smoke this week, I was able to do a quick interview with the author, Monca Leonelle. I hope you enjoy it and have a chance to check out her book.
How did you choose Hawaii, Spain and Los Angeles for locations in the novel?
I used to go to Hawaii every other summer as a kid. I spent several weeks in Honolulu, so I knew the area. I also grew up on Guam, which is an island in the Pacific ocean close to Japan, Australia, and the Philippines, so I had a good understanding of island life. My brother lived in Barcelona during the year I wrote Silver Smoke, so I picked it partly for that and partly because it’s a gorgeous city with strong ties to Christianity. It seemed like a place where there was a lot of history. LA is the city of angels, so that just made sense to me.
What inspired you to write a story with descendants of archangels and demons as lead characters?
I loved the Percy Jackson series with the Gods and Goddesses and their half-children, so I was inspired by that. Greek mythology was once a real beliefs system, so I used Christian mythology to build my world. I grew up Catholic, so that had a heavy influence on how I structured the Hallow and Nephilim world.
If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
I would choose to be able to slow down time, so I could get more done. I have so many goals and not enough time/motivation to follow through as quickly as I’d like!
The copy of the ebook I was sent had a short glimpse into the next book. What can readers expect for continuity (of characters and locations) as well as differences as the plot line develops further?
Continuity of characters–well, the characters grow and change but they are essentially who they were in the first book. There are a few new characters in Tin Soldier but not a ton. The story still focuses on Brie, Pilot, and Rykken vs. the New Order and the Trinities. There are still a lot of secrets and a lot of people out to get them. By the end of the seven books, several characters will have changed a lot, while others will be fairly dependable and consistent. All the changes are gradual.
Continuity of locations–this changes a lot more. The book takes place primarily in NYC, Chicago, and DC this time around. While the first book focused on sea myths, the second book focuses on urban legends. I don’t have the entire series mapped out scene by scene at this point, but the plan is to incorporate many, many more cities and to have a different "lore theme" for each book. So, for example, Mercury Tilt is focused on fairy tale lore. I think the style is pretty different from other series but I wanted each book to feel fresh. Also, I want to convey how huge the Hallow/Nephilim world is, and you can’t do that when the entire cast hangs out on Oahu for seven books.
Who are your favorite authors of all time?
I have many! Classic authors include Jane Austen and CS. Lewis. For modern authors, I love JKR, Stephenie Meyer, and Suzanne Collins, to start. I also love Cassandra Clare and Holly Black. I will always support them and their YA novels, no matter where their writing takes them. Maggie Stiefvater is another one I enjoy. I don’t get as addicted to her books, but her blog is just plain witty and smart. She seems like such a genuine person, you can’t help but want to support her in all her creative endeavors, even the non-writing ones.
Many thanks to Monica for taking the time to respond to the questions I sent and allow me to share with my readers. You can find Monica online at her site, How to be an Author.