Blog Tour, Interview & Review: Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character (Almost) as Awesome as Me by Carrie DiRisio & Linnea Gear
Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character (Almost) as Awesome as Me by Carrie DiRisio was released this week (October 17th), I am thrilled to be a part of this blog tour! I had the awesome opportunity to interview Linnea Gear, the illustrator for this novel, and to share with you all some images from the book! I am also posting my mini-review today as well!
Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character (Almost) as Awesome as Me by Carrie Ann DiRisio, Linnea Gear (Illustrator)
Category: Young Adult, Humor
Publication: October 17th, 2017; Sky Pony Press
Have you ever wished you could receive a little guidance from your favorite book boyfriend? Ever dreamed of being the Chosen One in a YA novel? Want to know all the secrets of surviving the dreaded plot twist?
Or maybe you’re just really confused about what “opal-tinted, luminous cerulean orbs” actually are?
Well, popular Twitter personality @broodingYAhero is here to help as he tackles the final frontier in his media dominance: writing a book. Join Broody McHottiepants as he attempts to pen Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character (Almost) as Awesome as Me, a “self-help” guide (with activities–you always need activities) that lovingly pokes fun at the YA tropes that we roll our eyes at, but secretly love.
As his nefarious ex, Blondie DeMeani, attempts to thwart him at every turn, Broody overcomes to detail, among other topics, how to choose your genre, how to keep your love interest engaged (while maintaining lead character status), his secret formula for guaranteed love triangle success, and how to make sure you secure that sequel, all while keeping his hair perfectly coiffed and never breaking a sweat.
Interview with Linnea Gear – Illustrator:
1. How did you meet author Carrie DiRisio?
I’ve actually known her for a couple years! She bought a few commissions from me prior to the Broody book, and then she was so nice to think of me to illustrate her book! I consider her such a great friend, and she’s helped me gain a lot of confidence and made me realize my potential.
2. What kind of inspiration did you have for creating Broody & Blondie from words to images?
After reading so many YA books featuring the very same “Broody and Blondie,” I had a pretty good idea of how they would look. When Carrie said “draw the typical Brooding hero” I knew exactly what I had in mind. I drew 4 options, and then @broodingYAhero followers voted for their favorite! I loved that the fans got a chance to be involved.
3. What is one thing you think readers will take away from Brooding YA Hero?
They’ll take away so many laughs after reading this book! I wish I had a book like this when I was in high school!! It makes fun of all the clichés of the typical YA book and I think will give teenagers a sense that reality doesn’t have to be like the books they read. There are some things that are problematic in YA books that Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character tackles in a fun, sarcastic way. It was feminist, hilarious, and so spot-on!!
Carrie and her editor, Alison, came up with a list of every illustration they wanted. With that and using the descriptions in the book, I was able to go through and try to put their vision onto paper. I was allowed to use my artistic freedom and then anything that needed to be edited was done. It was a fun, simple process!
5. What are you working on now/next?
I’m currently doing freelance work, of which a few I’m working with authors! For their book cover, character art, etc. I’m so honored they come to me to bring their vision to life!!
As this book is all about teaching you how to unlock your main character potential,
it stands to reason that anyone who reads it can become one.
Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character (Almost) as Awesome as Me isn’t your typical novel. It is a handbook, a guide so to speak, it’s really a book about books! But it is hilarious, witty, super creative and ultimately very feminist. There are quizzes, puzzles, horoscopes, and clearly amazing illustrations. I literally shed tears, I was laughing so hard! I think that every fan of young adult literature should read this book, even though it pokes fun at the most tropiest of things, it’s also just all-around enjoyable.
Brooding YA Hero is full of sass, hilarity, and social commentary about the world of YA. If we can’t laugh at ourselves or the things we love, then aren’t we all just self-satisfied and boring? Maybe that was just me and my take. But seriously, this book should be on every single young adult writers’ shelves, as well as every lover and reader of YA. I never saw myself as an aspiring writer, but with all the book events I go to, so many people ask those types of questions about advice for an aspiring writer, and I think from now on, everyone should just buy this book!
The topics covered within these pages may be full of snark, but they also shine light on important issues and is truly a guide of how to write a good brooding hero, and what not to do … like kill off the only queer character, or be the white savior of the POC character. It doesn’t tell you stop reading the tropiest YA, but it opens your eyes so a reader can know what tropes are out there. There are some not so subtle riffs on some very popular books, and I loved the side-eye shade and I just dutifully read, sipped my tea, and laughed out loud!
If you love cliches or not there is something in this book for every reader. I think if you read Brooding YA Hero, it will not only help if you want to be a writer, but ultimately I think it will make you a better reader too!
Carrie DiRisio YA writer and creator of @BroodingYAHero. She lives in Pittsburgh, PA with one large fluffy cat, and is currently pursuing her masters in Digital Marketing, although her true dream is to become a Disney Villainess, complete with a really snazzy gown. In addition to writing and plans for world domination, she also enjoys running, coffee, Krav Maga, and knitting. You can follow her @writer_carrie or check out her website at creativelycarrie.com.
Linnea Gear was born and raised in Cave Creek, Arizona, a small town known for its Wild West feel. She has been drawing professionally since 2013. Linnea currently lives in Flagstaff, AZ, earning a BS in Chemistry and currently splits her time between drawing concept art and drawing chemical equations. She is the writer and illustrator of Dissent, a fantasy webcomic. You can follow her @linneadoodle and check out her art at linneart.tumblr.com.
(author photos were created by Linnea Gear)