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Sunday, January 16, 2011

Interview with Joy Preble and Giveaway: Win Dreaming Anastasia and Haunted!


Today I'd like to extend a very warm welcome to Joy Preble. Joy is the author of the books Dreaming Anastasia and the sequel, Haunted which releases February 1st. Joy stopped by to discuss this exciting series and gave up some inside scoop on Ethan, Anne and Baba Yaga, as well as that mysterious Russian Rusalka who makes her first appearance in HauntedSee below for details regarding a fantastic prize pack up for grabs.

Joy  Preble


Joy Preble grew up in Chicago, though she moved to Texas and inexplicably began listening to country music, which she claims she didn't like until then. She has an English degree from Northwestern University, and she teaches high school English. Dreaming Anastasia is her first novel. She can be found online at www.joypreble.com




  1. HAUNTED (Dreaming Anastasia 2) continues the story of Ethan and Anne from the first novel, while incorporating some new surprises, such as the presence of a malevolent rusalka. Can you tell us a little more about the book and share with us a favorite line, scene or passage?

This is a tough one because there are so many secrets that get revealed and I don’t want to give anything crucial away. But since we all know that Ethan does indeed return in this book, I’ll treat you to what Anne thinks when she first sees him here:

            “He’s wearing jeans and a short-sleeved black T-shirt. His eyes are very blue, and his thick brown hair is just a bit too long. When he sees me, his face breaks into a smile that’s a little less sweet and a lot more ironic than Ben’s. Even from here, I can see that he’s got a day’s worth of stubble on his very strong chin. It looks good on him. He’s also clearly a little bit older than the last time I saw him. This looks good on him, too. I’d wondered about that. After all, immortal hotties don’t become mortal hotties every day.”

  1. What three words would you say best describe HAUNTED?

Romantic, spooky, fast-paced.

  1. What is the meaning behind the title HAUNTED for this installment in the DREAMING ANASTASIA series?

HauntedYou know, what’s interesting, is that HAUNTED has always been the title in my head for book 2. And that’s because everyone in the story is haunted in some way by past events – both from Dreaming Anastasia as well as events that occurred long before that. And all of those events start to collide in book 2.

  1. With her disembodied hands and that rickety house on moving chicken feet, Baba Yaga was a fascinating character in DREAMING ANASTASIA. Can you discuss her appearance in Russian folk tales and how you drew from them when constructing her character? Also, can you reveal whether we’ll see more of her in HAUNTED?

Baba Yaga is a fascinating old witch! In Russian fairy tales, she is always unpredictable. She might help you or she might eat you, depending on her mood rather than on anything you do or don’t do. I really love that about her! She’s definitely the embodiment of the crone – old, clever, and impossible to categorize. Fairy tales and folklore in most cultures tend to reflect society’s fear of older women and have a tendency to pigeonhole them as ugly and sort of sexless.  But Baba Yaga as I use her in the Dreaming Anastasia books is a force of nature. She’s definitely a major character in Haunted – in fact she narrates some of the novel. We find out about her past and about what’s been happening since she grabbed Viktor at the end of Dreaming Anastasia and spirited him back to her hut in the forest. Remember – no one ever leaves Baba Yaga’s forest the same as they entered. So Baba Yaga’s presence reflects that transformational quality. Of course, this means that Anne will probably take another trip to the forest in this book...

  1. Can we look forward to more of the romance between Anne and Ethan in this installment?

Oh yes! Haunted does up the stakes for the Anne and Ethan romance. In Ethan’s absence, Anne’s acquired a new boyfriend – lifeguard Ben Logan – and there’s definitely a little love triangle developing here. Plus as the mystery of the rusalka unfolds and our characters find themselves in perilous situations, Anne and Ethan’s relationship gets some interesting twists and turns in this installment. And peril. There’s lots of peril. Cause I love putting my characters in danger. Brings out who they truly are. That’s all I’m going to say for now.

  1. If HAUNTED was to be made into a movie, do you have certain actors you envision in the lead roles or do you think unknowns would be best suited to play them?


I’ve probably thought about this more than I’d like to admit (okay, who doesn’t want her novel to be made into a movie?), and the conclusion I’ve come to is that I’d prefer relative unknowns. I wouldn’t want viewers to be distracted thinking, ‘Oh look. It’s Leighton Meester or Minka Kelly playing Anne.’

  1. What were you like as a teenager and did you have any books in particular that were your favorites? If your teenage self was to read your books, what do you think she’d say?

Ah, my teenage self. Honestly? I was a geek girl. Possibly this surprises no one. Geek as in I wrote Star Trek fan fiction, played the viola, actually constructed more than one model of the USS Enterprise and for a while dated the bassoon player in our high school band. Did I really just tell you this? Seems I did. So if I read my books, I’d have found them fabulous. Truthfully, I still write for that geek girl most days – she’s responsible for my love of all things Whedonesque and is why I faithfully recorded every ep of Buffy from season 2 on and labeled the VHS tapes w/the ep titles. As for what I read when I was a teenager, I was all over the place. I’ve always been a binge reader – I’ll find an author I like and then read just about everything by that person. I did that with Ray Bradbury starting when I was about thirteen. I was into horror for awhile – Stephen King’s stuff, for example. Loved, loved The Shining and later The Stand. Lots of romance, too. I also loved reading stuff from my mother’s bookshelves, so there I was reading all her old paperbacks like Couples by John Updike; Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Suzanne… I think I got a pretty warped view of adulthood and love! Seriously – my parents never censored my reading, so there I was at thirteen reading Couples where everyone in this suburban town is having all these rampant affairs…

  1. If you could inhabit the life of just one literary character (your own included) and dive into their world for just one day, who would you choose and why?

Dreaming Anastasia: A Novel of Love, Magic, and the Power of DreamsI’m such a voracious reader that this is a hard question! But right now, I think I’m going to have to say Meg in A Wrinkle in Time. Because I have absolutely always wanted to know how to tesseract!

  1. When you have a free day with no responsibilities looming overhead, and your only mission is to enjoy yourself, what do you like to do for fun?

Depends on the weather, but I love having breakfast out – that to me is always the beginning of a great relaxing day. When I teach, I’m at school by 6:45, so getting to linger over eggs or waffles or breakfast tacos or even a really good bowl of steel cut Irish oatmeal plus lots of coffee and bacon always says happy! Beyond that – I like going to the movies and hanging with friends. I’m not an obsessed shopper, but I can definitely hit the mall for a few hours. Time to read is good, too. If I have a full day and no time commitments, a trip to Austin is another thing you might find me doing. If you’ve never been to Austin, Texas, you absolutely must go!

  1. HAUNTED is the second book in the Dreaming Anastasia series. Can you give us any insider scoop on potential future novels? Any other upcoming projects in the works?

I’m very excited to announce that I just sold the third in the Dreaming Anastasia trilogy! The Publisher’s Marketplace blurb reads:  Joy Preble’s Again and Again, the final book in the Dreaming Anastasia series, in which Anne, having survived Baba Yaga’s forest twice, finds herself bound by the witch to undertake a journey into past present, and future that will determine her destiny – and that of everyone she loves, to Leah Hultenschmidt at Sourcebooks for publication in Spring 2012, by Jennifer Rofe at Andrea Brown Literary Agency.

Beyond that, I’ve got a novel set in Texas that I’m still working on and hope to finally get revised sometime in the summer.


****GIVEAWAY****

Prize Pack including: 
1 finished paperback of DREAMING ANASTASIA 
1 finished paperback of HAUNTED

Dreaming Anastasia (Dreaming Anastasia, #1)
BY JOY PREBLE
What really happened to Anastasia Romanov?

Anastasia Romanov thought she would never feel more alone than when the gunfire started and her family began to fall around her. Surely the bullets would come for her next. But they didn't. Instead, two gnarled old hands reached for her. When she wakes up she discovers that she is in the ancient hut of the witch Baba Yaga, and that some things are worse than being dead.

In modern-day Chicago, Anne doesn't know much about Russian history. She is more concerned about getting into a good college—until the dreams start. She is somewhere else. She is someone else. And she is sharing a small room with a very old woman. The vivid dreams startle her, but not until a handsome stranger offers to explain them does she realize her life is going to change forever. She is the only one who can save Anastasia. But, Anastasia is having her own dreams…
  
Haunted (Dreaming Anastasia, #2)
BY JOY PREBLE

Anne Michaelson’s world turned upside down last fall when a handsome, blue-eyed and temporarily immortal Russian named Ethan informed her that she had a destiny to save the Grand Duchess Anastasia Romanov, held captive for decades by the witch Baba Yaga. But Anastasia had her own thoughts about destiny. And Anne and Ethan discovered that some things aren’t so easily undone. Now, six months later, the craziness in Anne’s world hasn’t gone away. Neither have her feelings for Ethan. Anne still has powers she doesn’t fully understand. She’s still dreaming about Baba Yaga’s forest. And she’s got a new boyfriend – very normal and very sweet lifeguard, Ben Logan. As for Ethan, well, he hasn’t quite gotten over the events of last fall, either. And he definitely hasn’t gotten over Anne. In short, everyone’s haunted by something – or someone.

Enter the rusalka – a Russian folklore mermaid with a malevolent streak - and a particular interest in Anne. When Ethan suddenly returns from Europe, Anne’s world collides with the paranormal once again. Her heart torn between Ben and Ethan, Anne’s search for the rusalka’s identity reveals deep and startling secrets - including the true source of Anne’s powers.

Like Dreaming Anastasia, HAUNTED is a wild adventure of a tale, a genre blend of fantasy, folklore and romance alternately narrated by both Anne and Ethan. As lives and fates intertwine and the romance heats up, so does the danger. “Stories within stories,” the rusalka tells Anne. “Secrets within secrets.” And as Baba Yaga frequently observes, nothing is as simple as it seems.

Official Rules:
1.You must be 13 year or older to enter.
2. Open to entrants with a valid U.S. mailing address only. 
3. Entries must be received by Midnight EST on January 30th 2011. 
4. Once contacted, winners have 48 hours to respond with their mailing address.
5. To enter to win, simply fill out the form below. Good luck!  

47 comments:

Momo (Books Over Boys) said...

I've heard a lot about these books! I've never been able to find them at book stores, or maybe I just didn't look hard enough but they look and sound really interesting! :)

LuAnn said...

These books look really interesting and I have a feeling my teenage granddaughter would love them!

reading_frenzy at yahoo dot com

Idris said...

I have always been intrigued by the life of the Romanovs, their history, specially Anastasia's. These books seem to be incredible, full of historical events and people.

So thank yo so much for the really nice and informative interview... and for the giveaway...

Orchid said...

Nice interview!
I totally agree, Meg from A Wrinkle in Time, would be an excellent character to be. especially if one would get to tesseract.
Thanks for the great contest (I've been wanting to read Dreaming Anastasia, but my library doesn't have it). ^_^

Lexie said...

I can't wait for Haunted to come out! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

SiNn said...

Your a new to me author and Ive not heard of these books but they sound awesome

donnas said...

Great interview. Benn wanting to read her books since the first one came out. Really looking forward to both now.

Rachel said...

Great interview! Very insightful. I'll definitely have to check these books out, they seem really interesting.

Natasha said...

Great interview! I really wan t to read this!:)

natashajennex(at)gmail.com

Vivien said...

I've had these on my tbr list for a while now. They sound wonderful.

kellyhashway said...

Both of these books sound great! Best of luck to you, Joy.

Jessie Harrell said...

I wanted to read Dreaming Anastasia when it first came out and still haven't gotten to it yet. *feels guilty* I'd love to win both books though!! Congrats to Joy on her successes!

SandyG265 said...

I haven't read many stories using Russian folklore. I'm looking foward to reading these.

Fran said...

Ms preble was my 10th grade english teacher! I can't wait to share her books with my daughter (she is only 6 so I may need to wait a few years)! Joy is the best!

Lora1967 said...

Joy i bet that was a big change going from chicago to texas. congrats on your success
chaarmedone1512@aol.com

Kristin said...

Joy-These books look great!Can't wait to read them!

Kristin
MyBookishWays

Melissa N. said...

Cool interview! I'm excited to read these, win or not!

To Joy I must say that the concept seems really interesting.

Carol M said...

These books sound really good! I've heard a lot about Anastasia and I know I would enjoy these books!

Zombie Girrrl said...

Baba Yaga sounds awesome! Thanks for the contest and the interview!

My name is Patricia said...

I just wanted to say how much I love your blog! Its simple yet very cute and attractive. New Follower :)

latishajean said...

This book sounds so good I can't wait to read it! Great giveaway thank you so much!

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Awesome interview, lady! I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at West of Mars Win a Book for you.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

These books sound fantastic. I'm adding them to my TBR list. Thanks for the giveaway.

Jolene Allcock and Family said...

Romantic, spooky and fast paced. Sold :) That is what I look for in a book. Can't wait to read these, they sound amazing and congrats on selling the third in the series

missreneer said...

Thanks for the great. These both look really interesting :)

christitheteenlibrarian said...

Great interview!

I've given you the Stylish Blogger award! You can pick it up here: http://christitheteenlibrarian.blogspot.com/2011/01/stylish-blogger-award.html

Have a great day!

Bella said...

Joy, your books sound very interesting and I'm looking forward to reading them soon!

BellaMarie(at)tampabay(dot)rr(dot)com

Genna Sarnak said...

This looks great! Thanks so much for sharing! :)

Sita said...

I've been wanting to read both of your books for some time now, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I especially love that you're doing mermaids in HAUNTED. How cool is that??!

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

This sounds right up my alley! FAB post :)

Jessy said...

Congrats on getting the third book published! Thanks for stopping by and revealing a little about yourself. It's always a fun time reading about authors.

Bere said...

Wonderful interview, Kim! I've always wanted to read Dreaming Anastasia. It really does sound fantastic. And the covers for both Dreaming Anastasia & Haunted are so pretty. Congratulations on the third book, Joy! =)

Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books) said...

Great interview! I had to skip a few spoilery sounding questions, but it took a great deal of willpower. As a geek girl myself, these books are exactly what I need in my life.

Joy - Congrats on selling book 3! And since I've yet to read them (I have no clue why) I wanted to let you know that Baba Yaga is the best name ever.

CiNdY said...

Sounds great! Def going onto my TBR list!! Thanks for a chance to win!!
cmurphy213@yahoo.com

Joy said...

Thanks for such a great response, everyone - and for supporting Kim's Book Butterfly blog!! Can't wait to find out who the lucky winner is!
Joy Preble

linaramz said...

I've been looking forward to reading these! They sound so interesting. Thanks for the great giveaway!

Teawench said...

The books look great. I've always been interested in the whole Anastasia thing so these would be right up my alley.

Elie said...

Fantastic interview. I am so excited to learn more about the Russian story.

Jessica said...

I enjoy books that incorporate things like different mythology or fairy tales in books. And I'm always surprised when I distantly recall knowing something about the different myths or tales as well!!

Have read the first book, but not the second. Really need to get it too! Here's my chance!!

Jill of The O.W.L. said...

I loved the first book and cannot wait to read more about this characters. And hmmmmmmm spooky! sounds goood to me :)

Mariya said...

I have heard many things about your books and I really look forward to reading them =D

Ashley said...

Joy, i thought your first book was marvelous and i cant wait to read your next one!!!


truly,
Lasha :)

Jess (The Cozy Reader) said...

Joy, You already know that I enjoyed your first book and I can't wait to read the next book! :)

Belle Découverte said...

Great interview! I love the book A Wrinkle in Time. Your books sound great.

Awesomesauce Book Club said...

I've read the first one and I really enjoyed it. Can't wait to read the 2nd one.

debijackson said...

i would love to read these

debijackson said...

love to read these djackson1958@hotmail.com