Thursday, February 16, 2012

Defying Gravity: Book Review & Author Interview

Book Summary:
Homesick upon the SS Perseid, Linia, a young linguist, thinks she signed up for a mission of peace, but her crew members have another plan: attack the planet Medusa. Bored with his dying planet, Alezandros, a space cruiser pilot, joins the Medusan Army in his quest for adventure. When the SS Perseid clashes with the Medusans’ space cruisers, Alezandros and Linia’s lives intertwine. Sucked through a wormhole, they crash upon a post-apocalyptic Earth and are captured by cannibals. In adjacent cells, Alezandros and Linia cast their differences aside for a common bond: escape. But when romantic feelings emerge between them, they might do the unthinkable, because for a Medusan and a Persean to fall in love, it would defy gravity.

Goodreads | Amazon

My Thoughts

Confession: I'm scared of aliens. I'm kinda scared of space too. So I've never been much of a sci-fi fan. BUT I made an exception for Defying Gravity, and I'm glad I did :-)

Things to enjoy:
  • The alternating points of view: It adds another dimension to a story when you can see it from more than one perspective. And I always enjoy it when I'm allowed to know what the characters think of each other! The author switches from one POV to the other at just the right time, building tension and keeping readers' interest.
  • The world-building: It makes sense that on another planet they wouldn't use the same language and words we do. Planet-specific words add to the believability of this story. I like "pairing up" for dating and (my fave) "pegasifly" for some kind of insect :-)
  • The characters: Linia is sweet and Alezandros is kind-hearted and understanding. If the situation were slightly different they could have hated each other, but with a prison wall separating them and only a tiny hole to speak through, they get to know each other for who they really are.
  • The cool powers! I won't say what they are (duh, spoilers), but they're not your average mind reading/super strength/super speed etc. They're pretty darn awesome.

Lines to enjoy:

She couldn't place Mixi's age, since her white-blond hair was pulled back in a bun so tight it gave her a face lift.

"Well, I was thinking--"
"That's dangerous for you, and the answer is no." 

She tumbled and fell into the infinite darkness of unconsciousness.

AND NOW.... we are fortunate enough to have the author herself here to answer a few questions!

About the Story

1. How did you come up with the title, Defying Gravity?
Ah, that’s easy. I was trying to think of a title, and then the song “Defying Gravity” from Wicked popped into my head. It seemed to fit the main characters, what they were doing, and sounded a bit sci-fi to me.

2. Are there any songs you’d like to mention that inspired/influenced/are connected in any way to Defying Gravity
Well, “Defying Gravity” from Wicked, but in name only. I also liked listening to Katy Perry’s “E.T.” as well because it always got me into a forbidden alien mood.

Rachel: LOVE that song!

3. Do you plan to write any more stories set on the same planet/s mentioned in this novelette? 
Originally, Defying Gravity was a stand-alone book. Then, I got the idea of making it a series of novelettes. I debated on whether to continue Linia and Alezandros’s stories or to use the universe and focus on new couples. The latter is what I’ve decided to do. Right now I’m working on Fighting Gravity, which involves Phoebus (an Aresian) and Marissa’s (an Earthling) story set on the post-apocalyptic Earth as in Defying Gravity. The third and most likely final story of the Gravity series will be Pull of Gravity involving the Earthling Nike and the Cupidian Edonys on the planet Cupidis.

Rachel: I like the gravity theme you've got going there.

About the Author

1. What's a completely random fact about you that most people don't know? 
When I’m thinking on what to type next, I often tilt my head to the side. Usually it is to the left if I’m trying to think of a word or phrase. Then, I’ll tilt it to the right, if I’m trying to be more creative. I’ve found I do that when I took exams too in school.

2. What is your favourite time of day to write?
I would have to say morning. By nighttime, I’m usually too tired, or if I do write, it makes me awake and that’s not good for bedtime and work the next morning.

3. Do you have any weird little writing rituals? (eg. coffee in a specific mug that must stand on the left side of your computer)
I do most of my writing at the day job, so I’m limited on my quirks, but at home, I do love a cup of hot tea. I have noticed I sometimes make facial expressions like my characters when I write too.

Rachel: Must be entertaining for someone to watch you write ;-)

4. If you were stuck in an elevator and had the choice of any writer, living or dead, to be stuck with, who would it be and why?
Good question! I would have to say Michael Crichton. I loved his books, particularly Jurassic Park, and he’s one of the authors I’ve regretted not meeting before he died. His passing still makes me sad to this day.

5. Out of all the characters you’ve ever created, tell us about the one you’d most like to meet in real life.
That’s easy. I would want to meet Apenth. He’s the god of prophecy, wisdom, and a few other things in my Phoenix trilogy. He’s also my muse.

6. Who would you say is the fictional book character that resembles you the most? 
Of Defying Gravity, it would be Linia. Of all my works, it would be Rose from my novel Starred. From all the books out there, it would be Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series.

Rachel: Hermione = good choice!

7. Lastly (and most importantly): cake or ice cream? 
Cake or ice cream? Are you really going to make a girl choose? Hm, I guess I would have to go with ice cream.

Rachel: Yay! That leaves all the cake for me!
~  ~  ~

Cherie Reich is a writer, freelance editor and library assistant. She enjoys writing horror, fantasy, and mysteries, but she doesn’t let that stop her from trying other genres. Her short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies, and her e-books include Once Upon a December Nightmare, The Best of Raven and the Writing Desk, and Defying Gravity. She is a member of the Virginia Writers Club and Valley Writers and placed third in Roanoke Valley’s BIG READ writing contest.

Book Links: 


Carole Anne Carr said...

Thank you for the great interview, always fascinated by other authors.

Theresa Milstein said...

Wow, what a plot! Good luck, Cherie. Thanks for hosting her, Rachel.

Misha Gericke said...

Great interview. I can't wait to read Defyin Gravity. Maybe I should squeeze it in before I go on with Jane Austen...


Cherie Reich said...

Thank you so much, Rachel, for the lovely review and for interviewing me for your blog. I'll pop in to check on comments and such throughout the day. :)

@Carole Anne Carr - Rachel asked me some tough questions (especially the last one). It is fun to learn more about authors.

@Theresa Milstein - Thank you!

@Misha Gericke - Thank you! And Defying Gravity is definitely a quicker read than Jane Austen. Hehe!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I like the play on the word Gravity for the other two books. I wrote what I thought would be a stand alone that has morphed into two more books, but fortunately I can use the original's title in all of them.

Cherie Reich said...

@Alex J. Cavanaugh - It's always fun when you can play off a title, isn't it? I like what you've done so far with the Cassa-. :)

Christine Rains said...

Great interview! I always do the head tilting thing too.

Cake and ice cream have to go together. It's a rule, right?

Cherie Reich said...

@Christine Rains - It's nice to know I'm not the only one who does the head tilting thing. And I like cake and ice cream, but I don't really want them on the same dish. I'm weird like that.

Laura Josephsen said...

Oh, I was intrigued by this book when I saw the cover on Alex J. Cavanaugh's blog. Now I am even more intrigued! Sounds like a great read. (And I adore the cover!)

The Golden Eagle said...

Great interview! It sounds like an awesome book, and I love the cover for it, particularly the font.

I find myself tilting my head to one side when I'm writing as well.

Hooray for ice cream. :)

Rachel Morgan said...

Personally, I'm a cake fan. But I do sometimes like it with ice cream :-) (especially if the cake is warmed up slightly ;-) )

Cherie Reich said...

@Laura Josephsen - Thank you! And I'll have to tell my cover artist you adore the cover. It really was a joint effort to make it just so. :)

@The Golden Eagle - Thank you! It's nice to know more people than myself do the head tilting thing.

@Rachel Morgan - The more talk about cake and ice cream makes me want some. Hmm...

Nicole Zoltack said...

Sometimes I want cake, sometimes I want ice cream. Now I want both, lol

I wish you many, many sales, Cherie!

Tiana Smith said...

Great interview! I've seen the cover around the blogosphere so I'll have to check it out :)

Morgan said...

Thanks for this, Rachel. Soooo fun. All the books I read these days are ones that are recommended. Time is too precious to waste on something not worthwhile. Thanks for sharing!

Cherie Reich said...

@Nicole Zoltack - And if you want both, you should have them. :) Thanks!

@Tiana Smith - Thank you!

@Morgan - There are so many books out there to read. I find I lean more toward recommended books too. :)