Monday, January 21, 2013

Kristen Simmons Author Interview

Book Nerd Interview

Kristen Simmons has a master’s degree in social work and is an advocate for mental health. She lives with her husband Jason and their precious greyhound Rudy in Tampa, Florida.

Social Media

What’s one thing that readers would be surprised to find out about you?

I think people expect me to be a really angry and have a negative outlook on the world based on the books I write. Not so! I’m a happy person! I like high-fives, and funny movies, and Jazzercise! And using excessive exclamation points!

What do you feel is the most significant change since Article 5?

Breaking Point shifts gears a bit. In Article 5, Chase and Ember are primary on the run. In the next book they dig in and begin to fight back. They go from playing defense to offense.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating Ember?

I’m always impressed by how strong she is. She’s not naturally a hunter; she’s a survivor. Resisting the Moral Militia forces her to stretch in ways she never thought she would.

Which of your characters do you feel has grown the most since book 1 and in what way have they changed?

Sean! I didn’t plan on him being so important to Ember or the story, but he is. In Article 5, Sean is Ember’s guard at the reformatory. In Breaking Point he will become an important ally and friend, and in book 3…well, we’ll talk about that later. :)

For those who are unfamiliar with Chase, how would you introduce him?

I would say, “Hi. I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Chase.”

And then when he stepped outside to check the perimeter of the building for any potential security breaches, I would say, “He’s working through some pretty tough times right now. Don’t worry if he seems quiet, we’re safe as long as he’s around.” And then when he came back inside I would add, “Yeah. He’s pretty hot, I agree.”

If you could introduce one of your characters to any character from another book, who would it be and why?

I would introduce BOTH Ember and Chase to Mrs. Collins from Katie McGarry’s Pushing The Limits (Harlequin Teen, 2012). Mrs. Collins is a clinical social worker (Yay clinical social workers!!), and a great trauma therapist. Ember and Chase could really benefit from talking through the things they’ve been through. Everyone can benefit from a little bit of therapy.

Where is the best place in the world you’ve been?

I would have to say Lake Tahoe. I grew up in Northern Nevada, and have a special place in my heart for Tahoe. The water is cold and clear. The air smells like pine trees. In the winter everything is blanketed in clean, white snow. There’s no place in the world like it.

Who was your first boyfriend?

I “went out” (though we never actually went anywhere) with a boy in the 8th grade named Russell. He invited me to the Christmas dance via a friend of a friend. I don’t think we spoke, or even made eye contact once we became boyfriend and girlfriend. The tragic love affair ended the next day, when the same friend of a friend told me he’d “fallen in love” with a seventh grader. That seventh grader had some nerve.

Tell me about your first kiss

Oh boy.

It was later that year (8th grade), and my best friend’s mom had driven she and I to a group date at the movies (her mom may have been under the impression it was just girls). The boy, we’ll call him D, was approximately six inches shorter than me and had eaten a lot of orange tic tacs. I remember thinking, “This is the grossest thing. Why do people like this?”

What’s your most missed memory?

Square dancing with my dad in the kitchen to Garth Brooks songs. When I got married, we did the same thing for the father-daughter dance. It was great.

What's the memorable summer job you've ever had?

Selling shoes at Sears 3 days a week. Selling shoes at Macy’s 3 days a week. That’s 6 days of stinky summer feet and building massive shoebox castles in the storeroom.

What did the last text message on your phone say?

“Why a z on LOL? What is LOLz? Tired LOL? Like, zzzzz…I’m sleep LOLing?”

What would be harder for you, to tell someone you love them or that you do not love them back?

To tell someone I don’t love them back would be terrible. Luckily, this hasn’t happened. Everyone that’s said they love me, I love them too!

Where can readers stalk you?

On my website/blog of course!
Or on Facebook:, or on Twitter: @kris10writes

The second installment in Kristen Simmons's fast-paced, gripping YA dystopian series.

After faking their deaths to escape from prison, Ember Miller and Chase Jennings have only one goal: to lay low until the Federal Bureau of Reformation forgets they ever existed.

Near-celebrities now for the increasingly sensationalized tales of their struggles with the government, Ember and Chase are recognized and taken in by the Resistance—an underground organization working to systematically take down the government. At headquarters, all eyes are on the sniper, an anonymous assassin taking out FBR soldiers one by one. Rumors are flying about the sniper’s true identity, and Ember and Chase welcome the diversion….

Until the government posts its most-wanted list, and their number one suspect is Ember herself.

Orders are shoot to kill, and soldiers are cleared to fire on suspicion alone. Suddenly Ember can’t even step onto the street without fear of being recognized, and “laying low” is a joke. Even members of the Resistance are starting to look at her sideways.

With Chase urging her to run, Ember must decide: Go into hiding…or fight back?

Kristen Simmons continues her riveting dystopian series, Article 5, with the second book, Breaking Point. Ember Miller and Chase Jennings have successfully escaped prison and are now staying below the radar of the Federal Bureau of Reformation. Their plan of laying low does not last long as they are quickly recognized and taken in by The Resistance, a group that wants to take down the government. When a nameless assassin is killing FBR soldiers, the government compiles their most wanted list and Ember is on the top. With a huge target on her back and an order to have her killed, it is more difficult for her to hide her identity. Even The Resistance is beginning to scrutinize her every move. There is so much at stake that the easy route would be to run and go into hiding, but a part of her wants to fight back.

This is one of the most compelling stories I have recently read. The plot will completely have readers’ attention and manages to keep it throughout. The predicaments that the characters are faced to deal with are difficult and choices are made that will change their stance on certain things. The romance takes a forward step and raises the temperature. Although there is fighting and trusting in the relationship, Ember and Chase will continue to fight for each other. Their relationship feels like a facet of the bigger picture. Trying to decipher their bond will keep readers on the edge of their seats.

This amazing world that Kristen has created is completely engrossing. The events within The Resistance and the FBR’s mission to find Ember and Chase produced many intense and powerful scenes. This fast-paced roller coaster of a ride will reveal some shocking twists that will eventually play into the next installment. Kristen’s elegant writing style is highly admirable and maintains a story that is gripping and smart. She expertly delivers incredible characters in such a fascinating plot that readers will find Breaking Point to be a wild and exciting ride of satisfaction.

You can purchase Breaking Point at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you Kristen & Tor for making this giveaway possible.
 1 Winner will receive One Signed Copy of Breaking Point,
Postcard & Button by Kristen Simmons.
3 Winners will receive One Finished Copy of Breaking Point by Kristen Simmons.
7 Winners will receive One Breaking Point Postcard & Button by Kristen Simmons.
1 Winner will receive One poster, One Bookmark, and One button of a Surprise Art by James Vallesteros.
10 Winners will receive One bookmark of a Surprise Art by James Vallesteros.
CLICK HERE to see the rest of the Tour!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. so exited to continue with this extraordinary story !! thank you for the give away :)

  2. Awesome giveaway! Yea selling shoes in the summer would be a drag :-)

  3. Fantastic giveaway!!! Thanks Jenn & Happy Release to Kristen!

  4. Great post Jean!! Love the photo of Kristin saying Hi that is very cool.

  5. Thanks for the giveaway. I have been waiting on Breaking Point before i Started Article 5 to read them back to back.

  6. I love that last text message. LOLz I love Chase and Ember and can't wait to dive into this sequel! Thanks for sharing the interview! :)

    ~Sara @ Forever 17 Books

  7. Emailed you my address already. Thank you very much! Can't wait to get my copy! Yey!