Hey everyone! To celebrate Thanksgiving and the things I’m thankful for, I’m excited to welcome a very special guest, fellow YA author Komal Lewis! I first met Komal when Stitch stopped by her blog, A Dash of YA, during the blog tour, and since she was embarking on the same debut author journey as me, we became fast friends. :-)
Here’s a little more info about her book, Impossible – interview follows below.
Impossible (With Me, #1)
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance (Recommended for readers 17+ due to sexual content and language)
Ashton Summers is on her way to becoming the most popular girl in school and nothing—or no one—is going to stand in her way. Especially not Luca Byron, her freak neighbor, with his tattoos, loud music, and distracting green eyes.
Luca Byron has three goals in life: get through high school with a low profile, make sure his garage band becomes something more than a hobby, and try to forget about his insufferable ex-best friend, Ashton, who he can’t get out of his mind.
The last thing Ashton and Luca want to do is rekindle their friendship, but when Ashton takes a tumble down the social ladder, Luca—with his new makeover—is the only one who can help her rise up again by pretending to be her boyfriend. At first, being together is unbearable and annoying, but things start to change as Ashton and Luca discover the real reasons they drifted apart seven years ago.
Now, keeping their hands off each other seems impossible.
And now for the interview!
SD: Komal, thanks so much for stopping by!! So excited to have you here today to introduce Impossible!
KL: Thank you so much for having me, Samantha! I’m so excited to be here!
SD: Let’s dive in!
1. Okay, I know you’ve probably answered this question a million times already, but let’s do it once more for readers who may not be familiar with Impossible just yet… What is the book about and why did you decide to write it?
KL: ‘Impossible’ is about two childhood friends who grow apart. Ashton Summers is all about being popular and getting what she wants, while Luca Byron is a social outcast and often labeled a “freak” because of the way he dresses and the music he plays. ‘Impossible’ is about Ashton and Luca reconnecting again and overcoming their differences.
I decided to write this story after watching ‘Drive Me Crazy’ for the 50th time. I wanted to write my own version of the same story where the popular girl is really mean, and the not-so-popular guy makes mistakes too.
SD: 2. Some reviewers have seemed off-put by the “mean girl” tendencies of your main character, Ashton, even though her behavior can be typical for someone her age. What inspired you to write from the perspective of a character who can be so easily misunderstood?
KL: I think that’s the reason WHY I wanted to write from the perspective of such a character, because they are so misunderstood. Normally, the mean girl is a side character in the story, but I wanted to take the readers right into the heart and mind of a mean girl and see how they responded to it. Many readers responded positively, while some didn’t and that’s fine with me because I was prepared for both reactions. I knew I took a chance making one of my main characters so unlikable.
SD: 3. I noticed that Impossible comes with the following note in its genre listing: “Young Adult Contemporary Romance (Recommended for readers 17+ due to sexual content and language).” Sexual content and language, oh my! Could you give us a sneak peek into some of the juicy bits?
KL: This is one of my favourite scenes from ‘Impossible’ which my critique partners refer to as “the kitchen counter scene”. Then they make swooning sounds and say, “Luca. Sigh.” Here is a teaser of that scene from Luca’s point of view. (I kept it PG-rated!)
Her hand touched my cheek and she turned my head so I was forced to look at her again. There was a flash of blonde hair, and then Ash’s lips were on mine. For a split second, I thought I was dreaming. She couldn’t really be kissing me, could she? The tension in my mouth eased and I finally regained control of my senses. I pushed her back and crushed my lips against hers. A moan escaped Ash’s mouth as I pressed against her harder. Those sweet lips of hers were hungrily tearing against mine like she might die if she didn’t have me. Her kisses were driving me insane. Sure, I’d kissed girls before, but none of them compared to this. Maybe because none of those girls had been this girl. None of those girls had been Ashton. I pulled away and Ash looked up at me in surprise, her cheeks a deep pink. Placing both hands on her waist, I lifted her up onto the counter top. Before she had a chance to say anything, I resumed kissing her. She sighed deeply against my mouth and wrapped her legs around me so there was no space between us. I could feel every inch of her body and she could feel every inch of mine.
SD: 4. You’re from Australia, which is a place I’ve never been but have heard incredible things about and always wanted to visit! Do you think being an Aussie has in any way influenced your writing style or the types of stories you enjoy?
KL: I’m sure I’ve been influenced differently as a result of where I grew up. As a child, I read some amazingly hilarious stories by Australian authors that I’m not sure many people outside of Australia would know of. Authors like Morris Gleitzman, Paul Jennings, Andy Griffiths and Duncan Ball were just a few, not to mention Emily Rodda who writes the most amazing fantasy stories ever! I don’t think my writing style will ever be up to par with these amazing authors, but they have definitely had an influence on me, especially in the early years.
SD: 5. Impossible is the opening installment of the With Me Series. In the next book, Falling for Hadie, you’re introducing two new main characters, Lincoln and Hadie. Why did you decide to start fresh with a new couple? Any hints you can give us about what’s to come for these two?
KL: I feel like Ashton and Luca got their happily-ever-after and I love them too much to bring any more drama into their lives! As I was writing ‘Impossible’, the stories for the next three couples played out in my mind, so I was ready to move on and write about Hadie and Lincoln by the time ‘Impossible’ was wrapped up.
Hadie and Lincoln’s story is very different from Ashton and Luca’s. Hadie is recovering from a bad breakup (which you get a glimpse of towards the end of ‘Impossible’) and Lincoln is the new guy in town who enters her life at the right moment. I think ‘Falling for Hadie’ will make you laugh and make you cry, and it will also make readers hate me just that little bit more, haha!
SD: Bonus Round: What question do you wish I’d asked?
KL: Can you tell us a bit more about your second release, ‘Runaway Mortal’, and why you decided to write a Young Adult Paranormal series?
I certainly can tell you more about ‘Runaway Mortal’! Actually, ‘Runaway Mortal’ came into existence long before ‘Impossible’ did. I think I am a Fantasy/Paranormal writer at heart and there is nothing I love more than world-building (even if it does give me a headache sometimes!).
‘Runaway Mortal’ is about Katerina Lyrille, a seventeen-year-old “mortal” who attends high school with angels and demons. She is accused of the murder of her Headmistress—a powerful angel—and runs away from school to clear her name. You can expect a story about a powerful and mysterious object of legend that Katerina has to find, lots of witty banter, some cool powers courtesy of the angel and demon characters, and an arrogant, yet sexy, supernatural agent hired to guard Katerina as she awaits trial for the murder of the Headmistress.
Samantha, once again, I’d like to thank you so much for having me on your blog. I really appreciate the support!