New Year, Same Books, New TBR!
Before I begin, I’d like to extend a huge huge thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia and #AusYABloggers for the opportunity to partake in this wonderful book tour. Today is the first day if the blog tour for Fierce Fragile Hearts, a novel by Sara Barnard to be published on the 12th of February 2019. This novel is the sequel to Beautiful Broken Things but can be read alone, much like I did.
I loved this novel! Being part of this blog tour, I was given the opportunity to interview Sara Barnard which I was so happy about. The best part is that I hadn’t read the novel before I sent out the interview questions so you may notice that they are not specific to the novel, thus NO SPOILERS!!!
There will also be a NO-SPOILER REVIEW to be posted tomorrow as I have been promising you all for the past month. So please keep your eyes out for that. Notifications will be on my social medias @thebookishbree on Twitter & Instagram.
ABOUT THE BOOK: Fierce Fragile Hearts is the stunning companion novel to Sara Barnard's YA bestseller Beautiful Broken Things. It is about leaving the past behind, the friends who form your future, and learning to find love, in all its forms. Two years after a downward spiral took her as low as you can possibly go, Suzanne is starting again. Again. She's back in Brighton, the only place she felt she belonged, back with her best friends Caddy and Rosie. But they're about to leave for university. When your friends have been your light in the darkness, what happens when you're the one left behind?
1. Does your writing come from experience? If so is there anything anecdotal that you can share that has influenced your writing?
I think all writing comes from experience in some way, but I tend to take my influence from emotions rather than anything else. So, for example, everyone has experienced loneliness at some point, including me, and I would then think about Suzanne’s experience of loneliness in the context of her life; how would it change, how would that affect other emotions and choices she makes? And so on.
2. Fierce Fragile Hearts is about fresh starts, what advice would you give to other 18-year-olds wanting to move out of home?
That’s a tricky one because Suzanne isn’t choosing to move out of home – it’s a consequence of the life she’s had. So she’s trying to make the best of it but it doesn’t come with the usual exciting bits like furnishing your own place for the first time that other people usually experience when they move out for the first time. So for people moving out generally, I’d say, think about the boring stuff! Make sure you know how to budget. Think about what your support network is, and if you don’t have one, build one. It can be very lonely living on your own. And expensive.
3. I haven’t read Beautiful Broken Things as I was informed that Fierce Fragile Hearts can be read as a stand-alone. Did you intend for it to be this way, and what challenges did you face while writing this (if any)?
Yes, my hope was that FFH could be read as a standalone, even though it’s a companion to BBT. The biggest challenge was knowing how much backstory to include from BBT – I never wanted to bore a reader who’d read BBT, but I didn’t want new readers to be in the dark, either. That was tough sometimes!
4. Do you plan your stories out fully before you write them or do you have another method of writing that you find works better?
I have to plan them to some extent because I have to run it by my agent and editor before I start writing. So I need to give them a full synopsis saying what the book is about and what will happen right through until the end. I’ve got a lot of freedom to change as I go – and I usually do – but I do have to start with a basic idea of the book from start to finish.
5. What advice would you give to young writers such as myself with dreams of having a published novel?
Read as much as you can, whenever you can. Write for the joy of it, and don’t get too bogged down in thinking about getting published. A book that you enjoyed writing is going to shine a lot brighter than one you didn’t.
6. Is there a fun fact about Fierce Fragile Hearts that you’d like to share? Something behind the scenes that readers may not know?
There are a few Easter eggs in this book for my family. My nan’s maiden name (Gwillim), my grandmother’s maiden name (Ogley) and a secret message in Welsh. I also lifted a few of the university anecdotes directly from my own experience… I won’t say which ones, though 😉
I want to once again extend a thank you, this time to Sara Barnard to being so wonderful and answering all of my questions. To me now that I have read the book, the answers make so much more sense in relation to the story; but I hope that even if you haven’t read the book that you gained something from this.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Sara lives in Brighton and does all her best writing on trains. She loves books, book people and book things. She has been writing ever since she was too small to reach the “on” switch on the family Amstrad computer. She gets her love of words from her dad, who made sure she always had books to read and introduced her to the wonders of secondhand book shops at a young age.
Sara is trying to visit every country in Europe, and has managed to reach 13 with her best friend. She has also lived in Canada and worked in India.
Pick up FFH tomorrow and let me know your thoughts as soon as you finish!
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With Love Bree xx
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