Today I am very excited to introduce you to Everly Frost, author of Fear My Mortality. I had the privilege of interviewing Everly for the 2016 Debut Authors Bash. Take a look below!
Can you tell us about your debut, Fear My Mortality, in 40 words or less?
Fear My Mortality is set in an alternate version of today’s Earth where everyone is invincible and can’t be killed, but sixteen-year-old Ava Holland suspects she might be mortal when her brother dies, sparking community-wide fear of mortality.
What was your favorite scene to write?
My favourite scene is the one where Ava finds out she’s stronger than she ever thought she was. She’s just been devastated watching her brother die and has been taken for tests to find out whether she’s mortal too. She finds herself in a green-lit room at the mercy of someone she should be able to trust—a Hazard officer (think our version of a police officer) who turns out to be an undercover operative for a secret group that wants to create a mortality weapon.
Inside that room, she’s exposed to an experimental substance that heals her wounds but also gives her off-the-charts strength and strange hallucinations. She sees a red rose and a scorpion—two very different symbols—one of beauty and one of danger. She realizes that both apply to her when she breaks herself free of her metal restraints and sets the room on fire just by exhaling. She’s ultimately subdued but it’s a turning point for Ava in her fight for freedom.
What was the hardest scene to edit out?
I had to cut two chapters from the beginning of the book and that was really hard. I’d written those chapters to set up the world, its time setting, and to show more of its characters—in particular more of Ava’s brother, Josh, before he dies and also more of Michael Bradley, the boy who unintentionally kills Josh and then becomes Ava’s only hope of survival. I wanted to show more of who they were before everything changes for them. But the pacing during those chapters was gentler than the rest of the book and the subsequent leap into action more sudden. I miss those scenes, but I think the pacing’s more even because of the cut.
Do you have a favorite quote from the book?
My favorite quote is something that Ava’s brother, Josh, says:
He tapped his temple and pressed his finger there, his eyes boring holes into me. “The only war we fight is the one in here.”
What theme song would you give Fear My Mortality?
Fear on Fire by Ruelle. It’s a haunting, beautiful melody with a deep beat and words that could have been written for Ava and Michael.
Can we look forward to any swoony boys or girls?
I think Michael Bradley is kind of swoony. On the surface, he’s the boy who has it all. He heals faster than anyone else and his dad runs a successful corporation. But his reality is far more complex. His family was targeted by a group of terrorists who call themselves Bashers—they believe that slow healers are an abomination. Michael’s brother is a slow healer and the Basher threats tore Michael’s family apart. When there’s a Basher attack and Josh is there in a Basher uniform, Michael fights back, not knowing that Josh will die. After that, Michael seeks redemption by protecting Ava. He does everything he can—literally taking bullets for her—and she begins to trust him even though that’s really hard for her in the circumstances. I think it surprises them both when they fall in love but by the end of the book they’ve proven that they’ll never give up on each other.
Are you currently working on anything else?
I’m currently working on more books in the series and can’t wait to tell the rest of Ava and Michael’s story.
What has been your best experience as a debut, so far, this year?
Absolutely the best part has been receiving messages from readers. It’s the most amazing feeling in the world. Also, meeting other debuts – they’re a wonderful group of people.
What debut are you most anticipating?
There are so many incredible debuts. I’m honored to be reading an arc of THE WEIGHT OF ZERO by Karen Fortunati and I’ve just finished the exquisite GIRLS IN THE MOON by Janet McNally. I also fell in love with DIG TOO DEEP by Amy Allgeyer.
For next year’s debuts, I’m crazy in love with Cale Dietrich’s LOVE INTEREST. I had the chance to read an early version and let me tell you, it’s amazing.
Thanks so much for having me here today!
In a world where people are invulnerable to illness and death, with lives spanning hundreds of years, a sixteen-year-old becomes witness to the impossible – her brother’s failure to regenerate after death after which she suspects that she too may be mortal.