Monday, February 26, 2018

Welcome to the FFBC: The Final Six by Alexandra Monir-- Interview & Giveaway!!

The Final Six

by Alexandra Monir
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: March 6, 2018
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
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When Leo, an Italian championship swimmer, and Naomi, a science genius from California, are two of the twenty-four teens drafted into the International Space Training Camp, their lives are forever altered. After erratic climate change has made Earth a dangerous place to live, the fate of the population rests on the shoulders of the final six who will be scouting a new planet. Intense training, global scrutiny, and cutthroat opponents are only a few of the hurdles the contestants must endure in this competition.

For Leo, the prospect of traveling to Europa—Jupiter’s moon—to help resettle humankind is just the sense of purpose he’s been yearning for since losing his entire family in the flooding of Rome. Naomi, after learning of a similar space mission that mysteriously failed, suspects the ISTC isn’t being up front with them about what’s at risk.

As the race to the final six advances, the tests get more challenging—even deadly. With pressure mounting, Naomi finds an unexpected friend in Leo, and the two grow closer with each mind-boggling experience they encounter. But it’s only when the finalists become fewer and their destinies grow nearer that the two can fathom the full weight of everything at stake: the world, the stars, and their lives.

Hello Alexandra! We are super excited to talk to you about THE FINAL SIX and to have you in our FFBC tours.

I’m super excited too. Thanks for hosting me! –Alexandra 


Favorite Book? 

YA: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
Adult: Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Favorite TV show?

Currently a tie between Game of Thrones and The Crown

Favorite movie?

Moulin Rouge will always be my sentimental favorite, while Arrival is a more recent fave. 

Favorite Song?

“Sodade” by Cesaria Evora

Favorite Food?

Dessert! Chocolate, candy, ice-cream, all of it!

Name 3 fictional places you would move to in a heartbeat.

Hogwarts, Pemberley (of Pride & Prejudice fame), Disneyland’s Main Street 

What were your favorite books growing up?

A Little Princess and The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, and the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace

 Favorite Quote?

“Never, never, never give up.” –Winston Churchill

What do you find yourself “Fangirling” over?

Right now, I’m fangirling hard over brilliant female-driven TV, particularly The Crown and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.

 Name a recent book you read that you would recommend to our YA fans?
The Belles. Oh my gosh, does this book live up to the hype and then some! Dhonielle Clayton’s writing is magic.


Could you tell our Book Addicts a little bit about THE FINAL SIX?

The book is set in the near-future, after global warming has largely destroyed our Earth. With the future of the human race at stake, the United Nations and the international space agencies band together to send a crew of six astronauts to create a new human settlement on Jupiter’s moon, Europa. It’s a mission that requires the young—and the best and brightest. The space agencies handpick twenty-four teen finalists from around the globe, including our narrators, Leo and Naomi, and they become celebrities overnight as they’re drafted into International Space Training Camp and compete for one of the six spots on the mission. But getting chosen will mean leaving Earth, and everyone on it, for good—and stepping into a world rife with unknown dangers.

Can you tell us 3 interesting/random things about Leo and/or Naomi?
  1. Naomi is the first book protagonist I’ve written who shares my Iranian-American heritage—which makes her extra special to me.
  2. Leo shares his name with my 9-month-old son! I got pregnant while working on this book, so it was only natural that my baby and my protagonist should share a name.
  3. One of the very first scenes I envisioned, after coming up with the idea for The Final Six, was the moment when Leo and Naomi saw each other for the first time at the press conference.

What are your fave Sci-Fi TV Shows or Movies?

Arrival broke my heart and blew me away—it’s the kind of writing I aspire to! I also loved and haven’t stopped thinking about Interstellar.   

What 3 hashtags would you most associate with your book series? (Could be a word or phrase or anything that would instantly make you think of THE FINAL SIX).


How did you come up with the story? Did you find inspiration in any other story/movie/show and how has this affected your writing?

It was a moment out of nowhere, that changed my life. I was listening to a radio interview with an aspiring astronaut, who was applying to be a candidate for an experimental mission to colonize Mars, and suddenly an idea hit me: what if the conditions on Earth were to make this type of quest no longer voluntary—but an urgent,government-mandated mission, complete with a military-style draft? And what if those believed to have the highest odds of surviving this mission, and remaining fertile by the time the new planet is terraformed and ready for colonization, are the teenagers? Once the premise came to me, I was off and running!

Tell us your favorite quote from THE FINAL SIX.

Ooh, I haven’t thought of a favorite quote before! But here’s a line I particularly like: “I’m beginning to wonder who should be more afraid: us of Europa’s unknowns and its potential intelligent life…or them of humans and our tendency to destroy.”

Is there a specific scene that you had the most fun to write?  Or which part was the most difficult to get through?

The latter third of the book is nonstop action and twists, so that was very exciting to write!

If you had to pick one song to be the Theme Song for THE FINAL SIX– Which one would you pick?

“Sail to the Moon” by Radiohead.

Are there any recommendations you could give your readers to be in the “perfect mood” to read THE FINAL SIX (specific music, snacks…)?

Yes! Put on Radiohead’s “Hail to the Thief” album, pop some buttery popcorn, and curl up on a cozy chair or couch with the book. 

What’s next for you?

Writing the sequel to The Final Six, plus a few other projects in the works that I’m excited to share as soon as I can!

Thank you so much for everything, Alexandra!  I would totally move to Disney's Main Street too!!  And I always feel super nostalgic when someone brings up The Secret Garden-- it was my mom's favorite book when she was a kid, so she shared the joy with me when I was about 10-ish.  I loved getting to know you and this book :)

Iranian-American author and recording artist Alexandra Monir has published five novels for young adults, including her popular debut, Timeless. A Barnes & Noble bestseller and one of Amazon’s “Best Books of the Month,” Timeless and its sequel, Timekeeper, have been featured in numerous media outlets and been published in different countries around the world. She followed the duology with Suspicion and The Girl in the Picture, both standalone YA thrillers. Her upcoming science fiction novel, THE FINAL SIX (March 6, 2018) was acquired by HarperCollins and Sony Pictures on the same week, in two major pre-emptive deals. 

Alexandra is also a singer/songwriter who often integrates music into her books’ pages. She wrote and recorded three original songs to accompany Timeless and Timekeeper, which were released as the album The Timeless EP and distributed by Jimmy Buffett's record label, Mailboat Records. She also recorded a song that was released with the publication of Suspicion, and is composing a stage musical geared toward Broadway. Her musical roots are deep, as she is the granddaughter of the late Monir Vakili, the foremost Iranian opera singer.

Alexandra Monir is a frequent speaker at middle schools and high schools across the country and at major events including fan conventions, women’s leadership conferences, and book festivals. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and newborn son. To learn more about Alexandra, visit her online at

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1 comment:

  1. Space training camp sounds so much fun to read about and the suspense makes this so exciting. I loved Dare Mighty things last year and this is a must read for me.