Saturday, March 21, 2015

Day 21 of 31 books in 31 days- Paula Weston Book Giveaway & qualify to win a kindle

Welcome to the 21st day of 31 books in 31 days, where you win prizes for reading.

Recap of Rules

Everyday that you participate in the giveaway of the day, you are eligible to win a brand new kindle.

How to participate
  a) Subscribe via email, so you can get the author & prize of the day sent directly to your email.
  b) Like the author of the day on facebook
  c) Follow the author on Twitter
  d) Read any of the author's books
  e) Answer the occasional quiz on author's interview
  f) Scroll to the bottom of each interview and enter the raffle (you'll have to unlock the raffle with your email first)

That's it- then enter the kindle giveaway!

All giveaways will be sent out by the 7th day in April. Good Luck.

Today's featured author is Australian writing sensation Paula Weston. She is the author of our featured book, Shadows. Paula has written a book on angels, that will make you rethink angels. Shadows is the start of a series that you should not miss.

Featured book

                                                    The Tukish Cover is so Awesome
 It's almost a year since Gaby Winters watched her twin brother die. In the sunshine of a new town her body has healed, but her grief is raw and constant. It doesn't help that every night in her dreams she fights and kills hell-beasts. And then Rafa comes to town. Not only does he look exactly like the guy who's been appearing in Gaby's dreams, he tells her things about her brother and her life that cannot be true, things that are dangerous. Who is Rafa? Who are the Rephaim? And who is Gaby? The truth lies in the shadows of her nightmares.                                          

                                                   Interview with Paula Weston

1) Firstly, I must take the moment to gush and tell you that I love your series. It reminds me why I fell in love with reading. So I must ask you, what role does reading play in your life? How often do you get to curl up with a good book?

Thank you so much! I love to hear that readers are connecting with the series. 

Reading plays a huge role in my life. I've been a life-long reader and always have a book on the

go at any given time. I feel a bit adrift if I don't. Mostly I read hard copy novels (which I buy or

borrow from the library), but I always have a good selection of ebooks on my kindle and iPad,

just so I can never get caught short. You never when the chance might arise to sneak in some


My schedule is pretty full most days, between by day job and my own writing, but I can usually

squeeze in some reading either in my lunch break or before bed (or both, if I'm reading a

particularly addictive novel!), and always on the weekend. It's my favourite way to relax.

2) I read that you have been an avid reader since you were a child. What are your 3 favorite 

young adult books of all time? Who was your favorite character? Why?

When I was a teenager, we didn't have such a clearly defined 'type' of book as YA, so I just read

whatever came my way. In my teens I read an enormous number of Stephen King horror novels

and David Eddings’ fantasy series. I also loved J.R.R Tolkein, and Louisa May Alcott’s Little


Most of my favourite YA books are actually ones I’ve read more recently, and my three all-time

faves are:

- On The Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta

- The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

- Friday Brown by Vikki Wakefield

(I’m also still a huge fan of the Harry Potter series, which defies categorisation).

As a teenager, my favourite character was Jim Craig from The Man from Snowy River by Elyne

Mitchell. I was totally obsessed with this book. It was the novelisation of my favourite film at the

time, which was loosely based on a famous Australian poem. Jim is an eighteen-year-old

horseman from the Snowy Mountains who has to prove himself a man before he can return to

his home. He’s thrown together with the spoilt daughter of a wealthy cattleman whose prize

colt has run off and joined the brumby mob. There’s romance, action, adventure and stunning

Australian settings. Jim was my first serious book crush because he was tough and impulsive, but

also sweet and gentle. And he loved his horse.

3) Is there a book you wish you wrote? What is it and why?

I'll answer this in terms of three writers I greatly admire and the books that totally blew me

away (sorry, I can't restrict my answer just one):

- Maggie Stiefvater: The Scorpio Races

This is one of the most beautifully realised, atmospheric and tense stories I’ve ever read. It’s a

master class in creating a sense of place and populating it with perfectly drawn characters facing

impossible choices. It’s a love story, and not just one between a boy and girl, but between a girl

and her horse, a girl and the wild island she lives on, and a boy and his man-eating water horse.

- Melina Marchetta: Finnikin of the Rock/Froi of the Exiles/Charyn of Quintana (Lumatere


I just love Melina Marchetta’s writing, whether it’s her contemporary YA or this exceptional YA

fantasy series. In this trilogy, she delivers meticulous plotting and world building, layered

characters, plenty of tension, action and humour, and profound insights into the human capacity

for love, forgiveness and hope. I cared deeply for so many characters in this series – fretted for

them even – that I still carry them with me.

- The Book Thief - Markus Zusak

This is an incredibly moving and beautifully written story, which I read within a year of its release

and am currently re-reading (I still haven’t seen the film). Zusak’s writing is so evocative and rich,

and infused with wit, warmth and empathy. It’s a unique story, made even more unique by the

fact it’s narrated by Death. Reading it a second time around I’m remembering why it moved me

so much the first time. A must read.

4)  What prompted you to write a story about angels?  Why did this theme speak to you?

I honestly didn’t set out to write a story about angels and demons. I’d had an idea for a while

(while working on other writing projects) that wouldn’t go away. It involved a guy and girl who

were attracted to each other and who had a complicated history that only he remembered. I

knew they were part of a broader conflict and that they had ended up on different sides. I also

knew there were paranormal elements to how she’d lost her memory.

When I started fleshing out their story and their world, I came across the Book of Enoch, a

2,000-year-old text that recounts the fall of the angel Semyaza and his two hundred of his fellow

angel warriors. The idea of those fallen angels and their lack of self control sparked a rush of


For me, the real fascination wasn’t in why Semyaza and the others fell in the first place, but

what the consequences would be for their offspring – particularly if something happened to the

fallen angels to take them out of the picture. I wanted to put their half-angel offspring in a very

modern setting, having already been alive for almost a century and a half, still dealing with the

consequences of their father’s actions.

On one level, the Rephaim series is about Gaby and Rafa’s complicated relationship and the

mystery of what Gaby and her brother, Jude, did a year ago. And on a broader level, it’s about

how the Rephaim see themselves in the world – and the tension created when they disagree on

what their role should be.

Writing this story also gave me the opportunity to explore themes that have always fascinated

me, about identity and responsibility.

5) What can you tell potential readers about the series? What makes it stand out from the other Young adult books on the shelf?

The Rephaim series is contemporary character-driven fantasy that’s equal parts mystery, action

and romance. It’s written first person, present tense and told totally from Gaby’s perspective,

which means readers make discoveries along with Gaby.

As a writer, I enjoy exploring the complexity of relationships between all of my characters – the

things that draw them close and the things that push them apart – as much as I enjoy writing

fight scenes, so there’s a good mix of both throughout the four books.

As for points of difference...the things readers talk about the most are the setting (much of it in

a coastal Australian town), the ages of the characters (older teens/early twenties…although the

Rephaim are actually much older than that), and the slightly different take on fallen angel


 Other Books by Paula Weston
  a Rafflecopter giveaway

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