Happy Friday and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for THE BALLAD OF AMI MILES by Kristy Dallas Alley! I’m so excited because today I have an interview with Kristy to share with you! This book is truly amazing and I’m so so excited to for you to find out more about it, PLUS enter for a chance to win a print copy!
The Ballad of Ami Miles by Kristy Dallas Alley
Published by Swoon Reads on December 1, 2020
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Dystopian, LGBTQIA+
Raised in isolation at Heavenly Shepherd, her family’s trailer-dealership-turned-survival compound, Ami Miles knows that she was lucky to be born into a place of safety after the old world ended and the chaos began. But when her grandfather arranges a marriage to a cold-eyed stranger, she realizes that her “destiny” as one of the few females capable of still bearing children isn’t something she’s ready to face.
With the help of one of her aunts, she flees the only life she’s ever known, and sets off on a quest to find her long-lost mother (and hopefully a mate of her own choosing). But as she journeys, Ami discovers many new things about the world... and about herself.
If you could trade lives with any book character for a day, who would it be and why? What about a week? A month, year, or forever?
Whew, terrible things are always happening to fictional characters! I don’t know if there’s any character I’d want to trade places with forever, but maybe Blue Sargent from Maggie Stiefvater’s Raven Boys series or Vasya from Katherine Arden’s Bear and the Nightingale trilogy for a day or a week.
What would you do if you spent the day with Ami? Where would you go to eat, hang out, relax, etc.?
That’s tricky because Ami’s story takes place a hundred years from now but in a much more primitive, decaying world. If she came to my time and place, I could take her just about anywhere and she’d be blown away by the technology and cars and crowds of people. And I live in Memphis, so of course we’d have to eat some barbecue and check out some local music. If I were visiting her, I think she’d want to show off her friends and her home and the life she was building for herself.
If Ami were to hang out with characters from other books, who would they be and why?
Ami has a very complicated relationship with her family and her obligation to them vs herself, so I think she would relate to characters like Nina from Kiersten White’s Slayer and, again, Vasya from The Bear and the Nightingale. For the same reason, and because she’s also kind of goofy and drawn to charismatic, easy-going people, so I think she would love to hang out with Yadriel and Julian and their whole crew from Cemetery Boys.
What is your favorite quote, scene, or moment from The Ballad of Ami Miles?
Well, without getting too spoilery, I really love the moment when Ami first meets her love interest and that scene was really fully formed in my mind for a long time before I got to it.
What was your favorite bit of research you ended up not using?
I did a lot of research about scavenging native edible plants in the southeast, but there’s only so many times you can list random plant names in a work of fiction before it gets old.
Were there alternate endings you considered, or did you always know where the story was headed?
The book did originally have a completely different ending that involved a violent attack. But ultimately my editor and I felt that Ami deserved an ending that gave her more agency and let her consciously choose the direction her life would take at the end of that story instead of having more choices taken away from her. I really struggled with that change, even though I knew something about that ending felt off. Now I’m really happy with the way it ended up.
What do you think about The Ballad of Ami Miles? Are you adding it to your tbr? Let me know in the comments and have a splendiferous day!