Author Interview: Gravemaidens by Kelly Coon
Gravemaidens by debut author Kelly Coon, is releasing on October 29th and we are thrilled to be a part of the blog tour and have Kelly answer some interview questions for us! Check out all the book detail below, and there is still time to enter the amazing preorder giveaway, see the author’s tweet embedded below!
Gravemaidens (Gravemaidens, #1)by Kelly Coon
Published by: Delacorte Press
on October 29, 2019
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Amazon, IndieBound, Audiobook through LibroFM
The start of a fierce fantasy duology about three maidens who are chosen for their land's greatest honor...and one girl determined to save her sister from the grave.
In the walled city-state of Alu, Kammani wants nothing more than to become the accomplished healer her father used to be before her family was cast out of their privileged life in shame.
When Alu's ruler falls deathly ill, Kammani’s beautiful little sister, Nanaea, is chosen as one of three sacred maidens to join him in the afterlife. It’s an honor. A tradition. And Nanaea believes it is her chance to live an even grander life than the one that was stolen from her.
But Kammani sees the selection for what it really is—a death sentence.
Desperate to save her sister, Kammani schemes her way into the palace to heal the ruler. There she discovers more danger lurking in the sand-stone corridors than she could have ever imagined and that her own life—and heart—are at stake. But Kammani will stop at nothing to dig up the palace’s buried secrets even if it means sacrificing everything…including herself.
- Gravemaidens has a strong sibling story, did you write that sisterly bond from experience? If so are your personalities very different, good dichotomies?
Ahh, thank you! Well, there are parts of the sibling story that come from my experience with my own sister and parts that come from my experience with my younger cousin, who is more like a sister to me. Both my sister and cousin breathed a little bit of life into Nanaea, but I made her a good deal brattier than they were when we were younger. Haha!
Some of her personality is artifice, as you will come to see in the story, but overall, she is very different from Kammani, just like my personality is very different from my sister’s. My sister is more of a free thinker, an artist, and someone who enjoys being in the moment. I’m a little more prone to my Ravenclaw roots like Kammani.
- There are strong themes of empowerment and tackling the patriarchy, what do you hope readers to take away from this book?
I hope young women walk away realizing they can do anything they want with their lives, even if that means defying traditions to do it. We are not defined by other people’s perceptions of us, even though we often limit ourselves out of fear of the unknown. Kammani goes for what she wants, even if the risks are high, because she is relentless of her pursuit of her dreams. I hope young women see that the possibilities are endless for their own lives too.
- Your theme song, or your one song that had resonated while you write Gravemaidens?
I’d have to pick Kammani’s anthem, which is “Swan Song” by Dua Lipa which is basically about never giving up, even when everything is stacked against you. I have a Spotify playlist with some of the tracks that inspired me throughout the process of writing the book if you want to check it out! There’s some Dua Lipa, Ingrid Andress, Lumineers, and many more. If you follow me on Instagram, I matched up the rest of the main characters with their own personal anthems, too!
- What should readers read next after Gravemaidens? Any book comps or recommendations?
Oooh, good question. I’d highly recommend Three Dark Crowns (the whole series) by Kendare Blake, Ash Princess (the series) by Laura Sebastian, and Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves. Gravemaidens gets compared to those, which is both highly flattering and shocking. Another YA fantasy I read recently that I adore is Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin. It’s not really a Gravemaidens comp, and it’s more upper YA than mine is, but gosh, did I fall head over heels for that one! =)
Thank you so much for the stellar questions!
🦋Preorder Goodies!🦋— Kelly Coon 🦋 (@KellyCoon106) August 5, 2019
GRAVEMAIDENS is out 12 weeks from tomorrow! To say thank you to everyone who preorders or library requests, I’d like to send you some gifts. Getting a YA book pubbed is a dream come true, so this is my small way to say thanks. https://t.co/q8TZ0jFSZh pic.twitter.com/NRjy4PzSn4