Friday, December 8, 2017

2017 Debut Authors Bash-- Amy Brashear Q&A + Giveaway!!

Amy Brashear

Amy Brashear was born in Arkansas but spent her elementary school years in Garden City, Kansas, just six miles from Holcomb. Amy heard about the Clutter family murders from a childhood friend, though it wasn’t until she read In Cold Blood that she finally understood its significance. No Saints in Kansas is her debut novel.

1.  What were your favorite books growing up?

My favorite books growing up were the Baby-Sitters Club books, the Little House on the Prairie series, R.L. Stein’s Goosebumps books, and Mary Higgins Clark books. When I moved from Texas back to Kansas I had a friend that suggested I read Where Are the Children. I devoured all the books by Mary Higgins Clark in the school library in the seventh grade. I’ve always loved to read about crime. I grew up reading it with my mom and watching all the crime shows on TV. Even today I can’t miss an episode of Murder, She Wrote.

2.  Name 3 books you’ve read in the last year that you would recommend to other YA fans.

Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson, The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee, and Landscape with Invisible Hand by M.T. Anderson.

3.  If you could go back and tell your YA self one thing, what would it be?

Keep writing and try not to worry all the time, even though it is easier said than done.

4.  I love True Crime— I went through a whole phase where I read so many of the books and was hooked on CourtTV and Nancy Grace.  What drew you to this particular crime and are there any others that you would love to see reimagined from a teenagers POV?

I lived in Garden City, Kansas during elementary school. Garden City is just six miles from Holcomb. When my family moved there I heard about the Clutter family murders from a childhood friend. I knew about the Clutter family, heard stories about the family, but I didn’t really understand until I read In Cold Blood in the sixth grade. Then I understood what the Clutter family truly meant to that tiny community in Southwest Kansas. The story has always been with me. I watched In Cold Blood, the black and white one and the made for TV one, and then Capote and Infamous there was something about the Clutter murders that stayed with me. Having lived “Out There” there’s something about wanting to tell a story from the point of view of what living there might have been like for the citizens in Finney County in November, 1959.

As for what other crimes I would like to see reimagined from a teenagers POV would be the West Memphis 3 case. I could totally see that from a teenagers POV. Also The Boys on the Tracks, which is another Arkansas case. The murder of Don Henry and Kevin Ives. And the Austin Yogurt Shop Murders. Four teenage girls were murdered after work in 1991. All the crimes I suggested are unsolved but maybe one day there will be justice for the families.

5.  Carly Fleming is an outsider in this small Kansas town.  What advice would you give to other teens who feel like they don’t quite belong?

I moved around a lot as a kid. I was the new kid in school. I always had to make new friends. It was hard. I often felt like I didn’t belong. And it’s okay to feel that way. And I know that I’m saying that after many years removed from being in High School. High School can be cruel. Not everyone has a great high school experience. It’s four years—and those four years will not define you. Life gives you many, many chances to reinvent yourself and become the person you want to be.

6.  What books/authors most made an impact on you/inspired you to write?

Anything by Agatha Christie. She taught me, well, still teaches me, how to write suspense. Of course Mary Higgins Clark. I read Flight to Canada by Ishmael Reed in a college and I swear it has become one of my favorite books ever.

No Saints in Kansas

Pub Date- 11/14/2017

A gripping reimagining of Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood and the brutal murders that inspired it

November is usually quiet in Holcomb, Kansas, but in 1959, the town is shattered by the quadruple murder of the Clutter family. Suspicion falls on Nancy Clutter’s boyfriend, Bobby Rupp, the last one to see them alive.

New Yorker Carly Fleming, new to the small Midwestern town, is an outsider. She tutored Nancy, and (in private, at least) they were close. Carly and Bobby were the only ones who saw that Nancy was always performing, and that she was cracking under the pressure of being Holcomb’s golden girl. The secret connected Carly and Bobby. Now that Bobby is an outsider, too, they’re bound closer than ever.

Determined to clear Bobby’s name, Carly dives into the murder investigation and ends up in trouble with the local authorities. But that’s nothing compared to the wrath she faces from Holcomb once the real perpetrators are caught. When her father is appointed to defend the killers of the Clutter family, the entire town labels the Flemings as traitors. Now Carly must fight for what she knows is right.

  • 1 signed hardcover copy of NO SAINTS IN KANSAS by Amy Brashear
  • US Only

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  1. I will enjoy this book as I love to read mysteries.

  2. How did I not know about this book before now! I'm also a huge fan of true crime and In Cold Blood is one book I've read a few times. Crime books have always been one of my most favorite genres to read. This sounds really good, can't wait to read it!

  3. Sounds like an amazing thriller/mystery book! And I adore the title, so good!

  4. Kansas girl here, sounds like a great read!