Saturday, April 5, 2014

Bree Despain Author Interview

Photo Content from Bree Despain

Bree Despain is the author of the Dark Divine trilogy and the upcoming Into The Dark trilogy. Bree rediscovered her childhood love for creating stories when she took a semester off college to write and direct plays for at-risk, inner-city teens from Philadelphia and New York. She currently lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with her husband, two young sons, and her beloved TiVo.

Print Length: 496 pages
Publisher: Carolrhoda Lab ® (August 1, 2016)
Publication Date: August 1, 2016
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English


"This new young adult series offers a twist on the tale of Persephone and Hades and will have fans clamoring for more. An intriguing cast includes strong main characters; Daphne, a songstress with miraculous capabilities and Haden, underworld lord, tell the tale from their perspectives in alternating chapters. Supporting characters will feel familiar to those who know the myth, as will Olympus Hills, the setting for special teens. Despain's descriptions however, and the introduction of the bloodthirsty Keres set the tale apart from other mythological fiction currently available. Add me to Despain's fans; I am looking forward to the remainder of the Into the Dark series. Recommended." Library Media Connection

"In this nod to the Greek myth of Persephone and Hades, a prince from the Underrealm must somehow convince a modern girl to come with him willingly to the underworld. Enter teens Haden and Daphne, who can't deny their immediate attraction, even while Haden tries to remember his mission and Daphne juggles a new school, a drunken rock-star dad (whom she only recently moved in with in order to attend a better music program), and her musical ambitions. Destinies, mysteries, and real and mythological difficulties all arise, but at the core this story is best when it is pure romance, even if it is a slightly unsettling one. The novel almost pulls off the elaborate plot, but ultimately, neither Daphne nor Haden feel like realistic individuals: Haden adapts almost instantly to contemporary life after spending his childhood as a disgraced prince in the Underworld, and Daphne is simply too perfect as an innately talented musical genius who never truly struggles for anything. In addition, their love story, while passionate, is rushed, and it's more than a little creepy given the fact that he knows she is doomed in the underworld (like his own mother was) and she knows that he has her full name tattooed on his arm before he ever meets her. Even so, a smoking-hot romance and plenty of unresolved plot threads should be enough to keep readers looking out for the next installment." The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

What’s one thing that readers would be surprised to find out about you?
I have a reading disability. I might actually be the world’s slowest reader. It’s something I’ve struggled with since I was a little kid and it used to make me feel stupid because I would perform poorly on tests—not because I didn’t know the answers, but because I read so slowly that I wouldn’t have time to finish all the questions. However, with help from reading tutors and a lot of persistence, by high school I was an A.P. and honor’s student. Sometimes, I feel like I have to work twice as hard as the people around me to accomplish the same amount, but I try not to let it hold me back.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating Haden?
How much I can identify with a disgraced teenaged prince from the Underworld! I think it is Haden’s fish-out-water-ness that really speaks to me--I’ve always felt like a bit of an outsider—but I also identify with his fears about not living up to expectations. I think a lot of creative professionals feel this way.

Where is the best place in the world you’ve been?
That’s a hard question! I’ve been lucky enough to do a lot of traveling so far in my life, but I would have to say New Zealand. My dad was born and raised on the north island of New Zealand before moving to Europe and then eventually the US. His life’s dream was to be able to take all of his children to tour New Zealand, and we all finally went in 2004. We saw so many beautiful things, had so many amazing adventures, and met so many wonderful people. My life’s dream is now to be able to take my own children there.

What's the most memorable summer job you've ever had?
I was a florist the summer between my freshman and sophomore years of college. I’ve always been interested in flowers and plants (for a short time in college I thought about being a botanists) and I even daydreamed about opening my own little flower shop. The flower shop where Daphne works with her mother in the beginning of THE SHADOW PRINCE was based on the shop I worked in, and Daphne’s “Uncle” Jonathan was based on my boss.

When was the last time you told someone you loved them?
About an hour ago. We spent all morning at a doctor’s appointment and as we were leaving my son just randomly said, “Thank you, mom.” I asked him what he was thanking me for and he said, “For everything you do for me.” Talk about knowing how to melt a mother’s heart! I make it a point to tell my children and my husband that I love them more than once a day.

What decade during the last century would you have chosen to be a teenager?
Can I say 1953 to 1963? There are lots of things I would like to change about the way people treated each other in that era, but besides that, I have always been obsessed with Audrey Hepburn movies. I love her clothes so much, and everything seemed so glamorous back then.

Haden Lord, the disgraced prince of the Underrealm, has been sent to the mortal world to entice a girl into returning with him to the land of the dead. Posing as a student at Olympus Hills High—a haven for children of the rich and famous—Haden must single out the one girl rumored to be able to restore immortality to his race.

Daphne Raines has dreams much bigger than her tiny southern Utah town, so when her rock star dad suddenly reappears, offering her full tuition to Olympus Hills High’s prestigious music program, she sees an opportunity to catch the break she needs to make it as a singer. But upon moving into her estranged father’s mansion in California, and attending her glamorous new school, Daphne soon realizes she isn’t the only student in Olympus who doesn’t quite belong.

Haden and Daphne—destined for each other—know nothing of the true stakes their fated courtship entails. As war between the gods brews, the teenagers’ lives collide. But Daphne won’t be wooed easily and when it seems their prophesied link could happen, Haden realizes something he never intended—he’s fallen in love. Now to save themselves, Haden and Daphne must rewrite their destinies. But as their destinies change, so do the fates of both their worlds.
You can purchase The Shadow Prince at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you BREE DESPAIN for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of The Shadow Prince by Bree Despain.