Stopping by PTB today is debut author Jessica Spotswood. Born Wicked the first book in The Cahill Witch Chronicles was released yesterday.
The cover has been getting a lot of attention – how did you react the first time you saw it?
I loved it. I had no input; my editor called me at my then-day job so we could look at it together, and I shrieked and got a little teary because it was my name! on a book! I think it has a really lush, sensuous feel that I hope fits BW well. And the girl on the cover looks very like I picture Maura, the middle Cahill sister. (Also, I love the way the book feels with that soft-touch cover. I pet it a lot.)
Born Wicked is the second 2012 debut, that I have read that alludes to The Daughters of Persephone; how much Greek Mythology is tied into your series?
Not much, actually. The Brotherhood preaches that the witches are evil because they derived their powers from Persephone’s marriage to the devil — but they have a list of other reasons witches are evil, too. The witches think Persephone came back to earth with foreknowledge from her time in Hades and her oracles were blessed ever after. Personally, I’ve always enjoyed Greek and Latin mythology; I took five years of Latin in high school.
How did you come up with the idea of three sister’s prophecy and their distinct powers?
This is tricky to answer without spoilers! I wanted to force Cate to wrestle with her understanding of her own magic and magic’s place in their world. She’s been told all her life that it’s wicked and wrong, and part of her believes that. At the beginning of the book, if she could give up magic and be an ordinary girl, she would do it in a heartbeat. The prophecy is so potentially important that it forces her to give up the notion of ever being ordinary, and makes her think about what she really wants for herself and her sisters. Throughout the trilogy, we’ll see her come to terms with being a witch and perhaps even doing some good with her magic. She might be able to help change the world for girls like her – but at what awful price? That kind of change always has a price, I think.
What has been your favorite experience so far about being a 2012 Debut author?
Meeting so many other booklovers! From bloggers and readers who enjoyed BORN WICKED and have taken the time to tell me, to booksellers I’ve met in DC and Boston and NYC, to other debut authors – I really enjoy hearing what everyone else is reading and what they loved.
What other 2012 debut has been your favorite read so far?
Ooh, hard question! There have been several that I’ve really enjoyed, but UNDER THE NEVER SKY by Veronica Rossi is my favorite. It has wonderful world-building and fascinating dual points of view, and I love the way Aria and Perry grow past their initial misconceptions about each other.
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- Contest ends 2/15