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All Things Asian Interview and Giveaway: Kristen Simmons

Stopping by today is Kristen Simmons, author of the fantastic Article 5, for a great interview and an exciting giveaway!

What made you choose to write the genre you do?

I’ve always loved survivor stories – end-of -the -world stuff especially. Everything from zombie-apocalypse/Walking Dead stuff to Man vs. Wild to all of the great dystopian literature out there. I wanted to write the kind of book I liked to read - something with danger, excitement, and romance.

Young adult fiction often features protagonists' awkward moments. What are some of the most awkward moments of your teenage years?

Oh my. Some of these I’m not sure I can relive. Is it enough to say that there was a period of time where I had braces and glasses, was in the band and in Girl Scouts (yay to both btw!), had decorating issue, in that I always needed multiple scrunchies in my hair, and for some strange reason wore only spandex pants? These are troubling memories.

What are some of your favorite books with Asian characters?
Shout out time: I recently had the opportunity to read an early copy of STORMDANCER by Jay Kristoff (St. Martin’s Press, 2012), and holy cow. His female protagonist, Yuki, is tough as nails. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about her adventures in Jay’s feudal Japanese Steampunk setting. Don’t miss this book when it comes out!

Do you think Asian characters and/or authors are prominent enough in young adult fiction?

I don’t. In fact, I don’t think I can recall the amount of young adult books I’ve read with an Asian lead on more than one hand…that’s concerning.

Do you think there needs to be more diversity in young adult fiction?
Absolutely. I would love to see more books with protagonists from all different backgrounds, mixed heritage included (like me, and like Chase, my male lead in ARTICLE 5!). I’d also like to see more couples of mixed ethnicity – like my husband and I!

Kristen Simmons is kind enough to be giving away a signed copy of Article 5 to one winner and bookmarks to four others! Enter through the Rafflecopter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And don't forget to check out That Hapa Chick and iLive, iLaugh, iLove Books today for more posts!


Catherine@thebookparade said...

Ever since I heard of Article 5, I've wanted to read it! Sadly, they didn't have it in the bookshop the last THREE times I've been! :( So this is the perfect chance to maybe get my hands on a copy...? Fingers crossed :)

I love that you're doing an 'All Things Asian' event - it's a great idea and definitely a topic deserving of lots of attention! I'm Chinese too!

New follower :)

Alyssa Susanna said...

I borrowed Article 5 from the library, and I loved it!!! I think this is one of the best YA dystopian books I've read in a really long time, and trust me when I say, I've read many! I think it's an awesome book, and I'd recommend it! Ms. Simmons sure knows how to put raw, powerful stuff into a book :)
By the way, I'm totally loving the Asian theme- I'm of Asian descent! Go Asians! lol :)
Thanks for the giveaway!!!
Alyssa Susanna

Christina said...

So excited to read this one, especially since I cannot get a copy from my library. No idea why they don't have it. :(

I would love to see more Asian characters in fiction. While I'm not Asian myself, I love Asian culture and Asian boys; I'm addicted to manga and kdramas. haha

Love this event!

P.S. Spandex pants...yikes!

We Heart YA said...

We had no idea Kristen Simmons was mixed. Very cool!

Lucia (iLive, iLaugh, iLove Books) said...

BAND WHOO! Awesome seeing her mention of Jay Kristoff, who, you know, also happens to be in this event. :D

Sandra said...

Article 5 looks really interesting and Asians rock! It's great that you have this giveaway. :)

campbele said...

Article 5 and Stormdancer sound like two books I'll be adding to my school media center!

roro said...

i read an e-arc from the publishers
and man o man one of my favorites this year and can honestly not wait for book two/ bummr YA it not sold here

chase and ember are so great together

Ishita aka Fishy said...

I really enjoyed Article five! Teenage years suck...I'm in mine right now! I can never tell if what I am doing is the "right" thing to do. Diversity would be awesome, it adds a whole new depth into the story! Thanks for the fun interview!

Lexie@BookBug said...

Article 5 looks like a must read to me! Thanks for the giveaway!

Alice ♔ said...

Ahhh thank you SO MUCH for this giveaway! It looks fabulous. Article 5 looks like such an awesome book! :D

Travis said...

Braces are the worst. Braces + thick glasses is even worse. Ouch.

Rek said...

As an Asian living in Asia, I do find a lack of Asian characters in most "mainstream books" published abroad in all the genres. And very few local authors write in speculative fiction, surprising that Asian Americans don't explore their own anymore. Emlyn Chand's first book, a YA called FarSighted has a major character Simmi who is an Indian girl, but I haven't read the book yet.

Doodle said...

Thanks for the giveaway! Article 5 sounds fantastic!! I've been dying to read it.

I was in Girl Scouts too! Then I moved and there was no troop to join. :(

Anonymous said...

Most of my friends are couples of mixed ethnicity! In fact, I think I might be the only one who's not in a mixed race couple. E is Caucasian and her husband is Indian. S is Chinese and her husband is Caucasian. T is Chinese and her boyfriend is Greek. L and J have the most diverse mix. L's mom has blond hair and her dad is Indian, so L and her sisters look Middle Eastern or Hispanic. L's sister looks like a famous Hispanic actress. J's mom is Polish via Colombia.

I'm also looking forward to STORMDANCER by Jay Kristoff! (commenting as Justine)

April X said...

Yay Asian-ness! I've been dying to read Article 5 it sounds awesome :)

Lilian said...

Thank you so much for this event, I am Chinese and it's nice to see some Asian spirit going around!

I am in a dystopian mode lately, and I would love to add Article Five to my TBR list!

Lilian @ A Novel Toybox

Sophia Chang said...

I love that Kristen straight up said "I don't" to your question about prominence. I completely agree and it's disturbing, but times change VEREEEEERRRRYY slowly.

lilypi said...

As it stands, Asian authors are underrepresented in the American novel market. Thanks for promoting Asian writers/stories! :)

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