Mundie Moms

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

THE EDGE OF EVERYTHING By Jeff Giles / Blog Tour: Author Guest Post & Giveaway #TheEdgeofEverything

Hello and welcome to today's THE EDGE OF EVERYTHING blog tour, hosted by Bloomsbury. I am so thrilled to have author Jeff Giles on Mundie Moms today, to talk about his new release. Check out his guest post below, and be sure you enter to win the giveaway at the end of this post. 

9 Things I Couldn’t Stop Thinking About While Writing “The Edge of Everything” By Jeff Giles

1) Johnny Depp in “Edward Scissorhands”

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Tim Burton’s movie has always made me melt. Remember when Edward gave all the housewives nutty haircuts? Remember when he accidentally poked holes in the waterbed? Remember when Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder were intoxicated with each other, and we were all intoxicated with THEM? The fish-out-of-water humor in “Edward Scissorhands” influenced the lighter moments in “The Edge of Everything.” Beneath its shimmering surface, the movie also has something poignant to say about relationships, about how some of us fear we can’t get close to another person without hurting them. Sometimes it’s like our hands are literally scissors.

X, the young hero in my novel, is a bounty hunter from the underworld. He’s actually an innocent like Edward S—he just had the misfortune of being born in a version of hell I call the Lowlands. When X starts to fall for a Montana girl named Zoe, he’s afraid that loving her will destroy not just her, but her family and her world.

2) Blueberry Scones with Lemon Icing

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There’s a coffee shop in my little Montana town that sells these.  I know I shouldn’t eat them because white flour is a silent killer, or whatever—but just knowing that they were sitting in the glass case distracted me even when I was writing at home a mile away. Judge me if you must.

3) Harrison Ford in “Witness”

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Forget all his blockbusters, this is my favorite Harrison Ford movie. Now that you’ve seen this photo maybe it’s yours, too. Like “Edward Scissorhands,” “Witness” is about a stranger in a stranger land. In this case, it’s a tough, Philly cop hiding out in an Amish community. The scene that played in my head constantly as I wrote is the one where Ford and some others go to town in a horse and buggy. A bunch of idiots start harassing and humiliating his Amish friends because they know the Amish won’t fight back. They call a young Amish guy unmanly, and smear his face with ice cream. Ford, who’s wearing Amish attire himself, starts seething. He goes to get out of the buggy and kick some ass. An elder tries to stop him: “It’s not our way.” Ford doesn’t care: “But it’s my way.”

It’s an electrifying scene, and it has unexpected repercussions, reminding us that Ford’s character will eventually have to go back where he came from. As I was writing, I thought a lot about when (and if) violence can be morally justified in a story, and how much more satisfying and humane books are when the action springs from a true value system. You can watch the “Witness” scene here: It’ll give you chills.

4) Two Slim, Riveting Novels That More People Should Read

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“Pobby and Dignan” is about a little Australian girl named Kellyanne. One day, she lets her irresponsible father take her imaginary friends to work at the opal mine—and he loses them! Kellyanne is devastated, and stops eating. Her brother, Ashmol, mobilizes the whole town to find her beloved Pobby and Dignan—who are invisible, of course. I read this book aloud to my kids were they were younger. There was crying all around. The brother and sister in “The Edge of Everything” are nothing like Kellyane and Ashmol. Still, Ben Rice captures the magic of childhood—and the push and pull between siblings who both love each other and are deeply annoyed by each other—so beautifully that it gave me something to aspire to.

“Catherwood” is a kind of literary thriller set in upstate New York in 1678. It’s about a new mother who goes into the forest with her 1-year-old daughter, Elisabeth, and gets terrifyingly lost. A friend told me that she started reading the novel while she took a bath. She was so gripped by the story that she couldn’t stop reading long enough to get out of the tub. When she finished, the water was freezing cold. For me, “Catherwood” is a beautiful allegory about parenting AND a wild story about the woods.

“The Edge of Everything” begins with Zoe going into the forest during a blizzard to save her little brother, Jonah, and their dogs, Spock and Uhura. I decided not to reread “Catherwood” because I didn’t want to be intimidated by it, but it was always calling to me from the back of my mind.  

5) Carrot Cake

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You could put cream cheese frosting on a brick, and my pupils would dilate, and I’d be like, “Mmmm, a brick! Yes please!”

7) These 5 Lines from a Poem by Louise Gl├╝ck

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“From the beginning of time,
in childhood, I thought
that pain meant
I was not loved.
It meant I loved.”

8) Idris Elba

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Idris Elba is transcendently cool in the British cop show “Luther.” Like Harrison Ford in “Witness,” he plays a flawed—and impulsively violent—man, but he carries himself with real moral authority, and you can’t take your eyes off him.

The bounty hunter in my novel, X, is an orphan imprisoned in hell. I needed to give him a surrogate family to soften his life a little. The father figure I invented is a man from the 19th century who’s nicknamed Regent because he’s so fierce and proud he  seems like royalty. Elba definitely influenced the character. If there’s a movie of “The Edge of Everything” and he wants to play Regent, all he has to do is ask.

9) My Daughter and My Son

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By the time she was a tween, my daughter was guiding ME toward great books, particularly YA, rather than the other way around. She was exactly the right age to stand in line at midnight and wait for each new Harry Potter installment—which, I’m pretty sure, will end up being one of her generation’s defining memories. There’s not a character in “The Edge of Everything” like my smart, kind, weird-in-a-good-way girl. Still, I wrote every word knowing she would read the novel someday, and I knew she’d be extremely annoyed (and bored) if the female characters were anything less than badass.

My son, who’s several years younger, is funny, bossy, passionate and loyal. He’s not much of a reader yet, though he’s loving A.S. King’s new novel, “Still Life with Tornado,” so he obviously has good taste. I think about my kids more than I think about everything else on this list combined (yes, even more than scones and carrot cake). So my son wound up influencing “The Edge of Everything” too, but in a different way. One of my favorite characters is inspired by him. I didn’t expect for that to happen, but I’m glad it did. His heart just sort of slipped into the novel, and now—every time I open the book—I can hear it beating.


Thank you Jeff for stopping by Mundie Moms today! Check out the rest of the tour stop below. 


Thank you to Bloomsbury, we're giving away 1 copy of The Edge of Everything by Jeff Giles, along with a metal bookmark. See the form below for terms & conditions, and to enter to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

OUT TODAY - New YA Releases for 1/31/17

It's our favorite time of the week! RELEASE DAY! Check out all of the newest YA releases that will be out on bookstore shelves today. There's a lot of great releases coming out today. Check out the list below: 

  1. Caraval by Stephanie Garber, Flatiron Books 
  2. Wires and Nerve by Marissa Meyer, Feiwel & Friends 
  3. Beauty and the Beast: Lost In A Book by Jennifer Donnelly, Disney Press
  4. Wait For Me by Caroline Leech, Harper Teen
  5. The Long Way Home by Katie McGarry, Harlequin Teen
  6. Dawn Study by Maria V. Snyder, Mira 
  7. By Your Side by Kasie West, Harper Teen 
  8. The Edge of Everything by Jeff Giles, Bloomsbury 
  9. Blood of Wonderland by Colleen Oakes, Harper Teen
  10. The Dark Days Pact by Alison Goodman, Viking Books for Young Readers
  11. Silver Stars by Michael Grant, Katherine Tegen Books 
  12. Exo by Fonda Lee, Scholastic 
  13. The Careful Undressing of Love by Corey Ann Haydu, Dutton Books
  14. Our Own Private Universe by Robin TalleyHarlequin Teen 
Which new releases will you be picking up today? 

THE 100 by Kass Morgan / Book & TV Show Blitz / Giveaway #The100

THE 100 fans, get your DVRs ready! THE 100 returns to TV tonight! To help celebrate the show's return Little Brown Books For Young Readers and Rockstar Book Tours are giving away 5 Boxed Sets of the Complete series! So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post. First, here's a little bit about the book set:

ABOUT THE BOOK (Box Set: Books 1-4)

By: Kass Morgan
Published by: Little Brown
Released on: January 3, 2016
Purchase it from: Amazon
Add it to Goodreads
All four thrilling novels in The 100 series, now available in a paperback boxed set! 
Ever since nuclear war destroyed our planet, humanity has been living on city-like spaceships hovering above the toxic surface. As far as anyone knows, no one has stepped foot on Earth in centuries--that is, until one hundred juvenile delinquents are sentenced to return and recolonize the hostile land. The future of the human race rests in their hands, but nothing can prepare the 100 for what they find on this strange and savage planet. 
Read the series that inspired the hit TV show. The 100, Day 21, Homecoming, and Rebellion are gathered together for the first time in this striking box set, perfect for fans and series newcomers alike.

Season 4 Trailer:


Kass Morgan studied literature at Brown and Oxford, and now resides in Brooklyn, where she lives in constant fear of her Ikea bookcase collapsing and burying her under a mound of science fiction and Victorian novels. Kass is currently working on the sequel to The 100, which she’ll finish as soon as she finds a coffee shop that allows laptops on the weekend. Twitter | Goodreads


5 winners will receive the complete boxed set of THE 100 Series, US Only.
Ends on February 8th at Midnight EST!