Happy Tuesday and welcome to my stop on the WINTER WHITE AND WICKED blog tour! I’m so excited because today I have an interview with Shannon Dittemore to share with you! This book is truly amazing and I’m so so excited to for you to find out more about it!
Winter, White and Wicked by Shannon Dittemore
Published on October 13, 2020 by Harry N. Abrams
Genres: YA, Fantasy, Science Fiction
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Mad Max: Fury Road meets Frozen in this striking YA fantasy about a rig driver’s journey to save her friend Twice-orphaned Sylvi has chipped out a niche for herself on Layce, an island cursed by eternal winter. Alone in her truck, she takes comfort in two things: the solitude of the roads and the favor of Winter, an icy spirit who has protected her since she was a child.
Sylvi likes the road, where no one asks who her parents were or what she thinks of the rebels in the north. But when her best friend, Lenore, runs off with the rebels, Sylvi must make a haul too late in the season for a smuggler she wouldn’t normally work with, the infamous Mars Dresden. Alongside his team—Hyla, a giant warrior woman and Kyn, a boy with skin like stone—Sylvi will do whatever it takes to save her friend.
But when the time comes, she’ll have to choose: safety, anonymity, and the favor of Winter—or the future of the island that she calls home.
If you could trade lives with any YA character for a day, who would it be and why? What about a week? A month, year, or forever?
Oh this is so hard! The thing about YA, and really, about fiction in general, is that we’re always putting our favorite characters in horrible situations and asking them to fight their way out. Many of them are not living the good life. Fantasy worlds are particularly rough, and often deadly. But, if I had to pick (and it appears I must!), I’d go with someone who gets to set out on adventures routinely. Maybe Kat from Ally Carter’s HEIST SOCIETY, at least long enough to pull off a caper. And if I had to live in this character’s world for longer than that, I’d probably like to swap lives with Inej from Leigh Bardugo’s SIX OF CROWS. The Grisha world is just so fantastically built and Inej moves through it with such grace.
What would you do if you spent the day with Sylvi? Where would you go to eat, hang out, relax, etc.?
In her rig, the Sylver Dragon! I’d love to go for a spin in her truck, sip boiled chocolate while she points out her favorite places on the Isle of Layce. I imagine there are corners of it only she knows; corners Winter has shown her and her alone.
If Sylvi were to hang out with characters from other YA books, who would they be and why?
She’s such a solitary creature, I imagine she’d want to be with someone who wouldn’t try to change her or fill her truck with too much noise. Someone observant like Rue from the Hunger Games, maybe. Or she could spend the afternoon throwing axes with Eelyn from Sky In The Deep. She’d enjoy that.
What was your favorite bit of research you ended up not using?
I used most everything! I found an excellent source who was a rig driver from Michigan, and he was so helpful in hashing out the details of truck driving in inclement weather. Oh! I did do some research on sailing vessels, but the end of this book changed a bit and I didn’t end up keeping those sections. I may use those helpful bits later. We shall see!
What is your favorite quote, scene, or moment from Winter White and Wicked?
There’s a moment where Sylvi realizes that some of the truths she’s built her life around are false. It’s a moment of brokenness for her, and while it’s near-impossible for me to choose a single moment I love more than the others, I identify with her there. I know what it feels like to have your world tilt on its axis.
Were there alternate endings you considered, or did you always know where the story was headed?
There was a more extended ending, yes! As I edited the book, I realized I needed to end with a more defined conclusion than I had anticipated. An ending that answered more questions than it presented. I had to stifle my tendency toward a cliffhanger to make it work, but I’m very happy with how it turned out.
Shannon Dittemore is a young adult author, conference speaker, and mentor. Her books include the Angel Eyes novels (Thomas Nelson Fiction) and the forthcoming Winter, White and Wicked, to be published by Abrams Books in the fall of 2020. Since 2013, Shannon has taught mentoring tracks at a local school where she provides junior high and high school students with an introduction to writing and the publishing industry. She writes weekly for Go Teen Writers, a blog recognized by Writer’s Digest three years running as a “101 Best Websites for Writers” selection. Shannon’s stories often feature strong female leads grappling with fear and faith as they venture into the wilds of the unknown. In many ways, she’s writing her own life story.
Have you added this amazing book to your tbr yet? Let me know in the comments and have a splendiferous day!