Notice for Review Requests

I receive review requests weekly. However, my personal schedule is hectic and I no longer review actively. (I also manage another blog called The Toronto Cafe and Food Blog). I do read every request sent but I apologize in advance that I do not reply to them all.

If I do take on a request, I will forewarn that it may take some time before I can review it. I am now looking to review adult fiction and self-help books instead of young adult fiction because I have grown out of it. If you are to request a review for either adult fiction or self-help, I will more likely to give it a shot.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. When I have the time, I may post a review. Thank you for understanding.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Author Interview: Robin Wasserman

I have received the opportunity to interview one of my favourite authors, Robin Wasserman! You may know her popular dystopian series, The Skinned Trilogy, which I highly recommend! (Click tags below to check out my reviews for the first two novels).

You get to read some cool insider information regarding one of her books becoming a movie and her new upcoming series! Hope you enjoy the interview!

If you would like to learn more about Robin and her books, please visit her at

Firstly, what inspired you to write the Skinned Trilogy?

When I was in grad school, I spent a lot of time studying the history of automata (ie the history of mechanical replicas of human life). I got totally fascinated by the idea of humans that acted like machines and machines that acted like humans, especially when it came to the subject of emotion. If it were possible for a machine to feel, I wondered, what would it feel *like*? That's how I stumbled onto the character of Lia, a girl who thinks like a human and feels like a machine. Who is neither one nor the other, and has to figure out what that means for herself and who--and what--she really is.

If Skinned became a movie, which actors/actresses would you like to see playing your characters?

I always love answering this kind of question about my books, difficult as it is! (And actually, one of my other projects -- the Seven Deadly Sins series -- is going to be a Lifetime movie next month, and it's been ridiculously cool to see who they actually cast in the parts. Especially since some of them are exactly as I'd always envisioned the characters and some could not be more opposite than the image I had in my head. But back to your actual question...) My dream pick for Lia used to be Kristen Bell, but now that she's a little old for the part, I've settled on Leighton Meester, of Gossip Girl fame, who I actually think would be even more perfect than Bell. She's got this delicate, brittle, perfect beauty and can somehow pull off being hard and fragile, all at the same time, which is exactly what this character would need. I haven't thought much about who should play the other characters, but if anyone's got any suggestions, please let me know, because I LOVE THIS GAME.

Out of all of your published books, which one (or series) do you say you favour most? And why?

Ouch--that's a tough one. You want me to play favorites? Well, if I absolutely HAVE to, I guess I'd say that I'm proudest of the Skinned trilogy, because I think it's probably the best thing I've written so far. (That's the plan, at least -- you always want your next book to be better than the previous one.) But Hacking Harvard remains a sentimental favorite, because it's so autobiographical. Going back to it is like flipping through an old high school/college photo album.

What do you find is the easiest part in writing? And the hardest?

If there's an easy part of writing, no one's told me!

But if I had to pick one, I guess I would say that it's writing the last page or so of a book. Usually by the time I'm midway through the book, I know exactly how it's going to end -- not always the last sentence, but at least the last image, the last visceral emotion, and writing last few chapters of the book is like rolling down a hill toward that final point. The closer I get, the faster I go and the more wild a trip it is. So that when I'm finally there, I just blow right through the finish line. And then I do a little dance of joy.

The hardest part, on the other hand, is *getting* to the last page of a book. At some point about 100 pages into any novel, I become convinced that I'm never going to be able to finish it. That it's going to be the worst book ever written, and I was crazy to even start it. Forcing myself past that point and moving forward, page by painful page, is torture. But it's the only way through to the good stuff.

What kind of stories or genres do you still have yet to try out?

My next book is a murder mystery thriller with some historical components, all of which is new for me, so I'm pretty excited about that. I'd love to write a horror novel someday, as that was one of my favorite genres when I was a teenager. And I'll admit I'd like to write something with aliens in it. Someday!

Do you have any novels you are working on at the moment or will be releasing soon? If so, can you please give us a brief summary about them?

I just sold my new book! It'll be out in late 2011 or early 2012, and it's called The Book of Blood and Shadow. Here's the official description:

THE BOOK OF BLOOD AND SHADOW, about a girl who, upon discovering her best friend murdered and her boyfriend the apparent killer, is caught up in a dangerous world of competing secret societies, all searching for the Luminus Dei, an ancient device that will supposedly allow direct communication with God,

And in fact, as soon as I finish this interview, I have to start writing it -- so wish me luck!

Lastly, give us an interesting fact about yourself that not many know of!

I was once, sort of, on the Jerry Springer show. (One of the trashiest of trashy 90s talk shows.) I went to visit a friend of mine in college and she dragged me to go watch this show. At some point, someone in the audience near us stood up to ask a question, and the cameras swiveled around to point in our direction. I did my best to get out of their way. But when I watched the episode, there I was in the audience, wiggling around in my seat looking like I was doing my best to get *on* camera. Thus far, those have been my only 15 seconds of fame.

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Natasa said...

EEEEK! I absolutely LOVE Robin Wasserman and her Skinned trilogy! They are my saviors, my heroes, my idols, the reason I exist, the reason I wake up every morning to lay a red carpet beneath their gilded feet... (excessive rambling continues)

Oh, um, anyway. THANK YOU for this marvelous interview! I gobble up anything to do with this magnificent author, and you just made my day with this post.

All the best!

Diana Dang said...

Lol! Well I'm glad that you enjoyed the interview. xD