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Author Insider: Jordan Dane + Giveaway

About the Author:
Pursuing publication since 2003, Jordan had received awards in 33 national writing competitions and was an energy sales manager in the oil and gas industry prior to selling. Now she is following her passion and writes full time.

Ripped from the headlines, Jordan's gritty plots weave a tapestry of vivid settings, intrigue, and dark humor. She loves challenging a reader's moral barometer with the borderline ethics of her characters and their flawed personalities—dark, angst-ridden antiheroes pitted against unforgettable villains. Publishers Weekly compared her intense pacing to Lisa Jackson, Lisa Gardner, and Tami Hoag—"romantic suspense that crosses over into plain thriller country with tight plotting and exceptional male characters, both bad guys and good."

Jordan and her husband share their residence with two cats of highborn lineage and the spirit of an intelligent canine who is impossible to forget.
On a Dark Wing was such an emotional read, so I'm thrilled to have the author, Jordan Dane, here to answer some questions today! Please give her a warm welcome!
First, one of my biggest questions for this book is whether or not this is meant to evolve into a series? Or is it a well-written standalone?

A. Hopefully someone besides my mother and my rescue dog, Taco, will think it’s well-written. ON A DARK WING (Harlequin teen, Jan 2012) is standalone. No plans for a sequel. My first YA – IN THE ARMS OF STONE ANGELS (Harlequin Teen, Apr 2011) is standalone too, even though I planted the seeds for a sequel in that book. I’ve gotten a lot of reader interest in a Stone Angels sequel.

On a Dark Wing is about a girl called Abbey who, under mysterious circumstances, cheated Death and now, it would seem, he’s coming to collect, even if the life he takes isn’t hers. Abbey seems to have a terrible fate in front of her, and cause for panic, as her crush seems to be Death’s new target. What was the seed that started it all?
What inspired your story?

A. ON A DARK WING unfolds from layers of inspiration. The writer’s brain is a strange place. The main inspiration, however, isn’t easily identified unless I share it because it comes wrapped in a furry package. An aspect of the book was inspired by the paradox of Schrödinger's cat, a thought experiment dealing with quantum mechanics. (Yes, quantum mechanics inspired my YA book. Don’t worry. Your head won’t vaporize.) There’s more to this paradox argument, but here’s a quick explanation. (I assure you no felines were harmed in the writing of my novel.)

In theory, if a cat is locked away in a sealed steel box and exposed to radiation—and no one actually sees what happened inside that box—can the cat be alive and dead at the same time? You can choose to believe the cat is still alive, but once you open that box, you’ll know what happened one way or the other. I get a brain cramp just thinking about this. (Yes, I’ve overdosed on the Science channel—and no, a litter box is not required to read my book.)

My heroine, Abbey Chandler, comes face to face with Death for a second time in her short life and Death has never forgotten her. She’s pulled into a race to save an innocent boy’s life (her secret crush) before anyone finds him dead on an Alaskan mountain battered by a treacherous storm. As long as no one finds him, is Nate Holden alive or dead? Can Abbey save his soul before rescuers witness the fate of his body? Read the book or ask a cat. Apparently, they know everything.

For bloggers and readers who haven’t heard of On a Dark Wing yet, what can you tell us about it? How would you describe your main character and the struggles that lay before her?

A. ON A DARK WING is a story about Death, healing the soul after a tragedy, and how to let go. It focuses on one girl’s grief over losing her mother, the guilt she feels for the part she played in her death, and how the girl’s first crush links her to Death for a second time.

In my stories, I like to show a character’s emotional journey. A character may not read as appealing in the beginning, but that’s the way life can be. Tragedy changes us. We may sometimes lash out or not show our best face at first, but when confronted in a very dark moment in the book, Abbey is forced into making a choice on what kind of human being she will be. She learns what love really is—a love cut short between mother and daughter, finding a new bridge between a daughter and a grieving father, and the difference between a fantasy crush and real love with a boy.

The cover seems to be portraying what is described in the synopsis, and beautifully so. I love the colors! And sexy boy-man’s wings! What was your initial reaction to the cover? Do you feel it’s an honest portrayal of the story on its pages?

A. I love the cover. It reminds me of the ending of the book. But even though the Angel of Death plays a big part in the novel, this isn’t a simple angel story. This is about one girl’s struggle to redefine who she is beyond one tragic moment in her life. Earlier in the book she runs from pain or curls into a ball, ignoring the bad stuff. But Death and a mother’s love will be the catalyst for Abbey to discover who she wants to be and who the truly important people are in her life. Hard to put all of that on a cover, but I think Harlequin Teen did a great job in capturing the isolation and loneliness of the Angel of Death. (The ending of the book always makes me cry.)

What can you reveal about Nate, the boy that has so enraptured Abbey’s attention?

A. Nate is a great guy, but he’s only a fraction of the story. He’s a fantasy for Abbey and more of a foil for her to learn what love truly is. Abbey has three “boys” in her life. Nate (Mr. Perfect in her mind), Tanner Lange (her amazing and sweet BFF in a wheelchair), and yes, the Angel of Death (who has reasons of his own to be with her). Like most teenagers, Abbey’s life is complicated.

And lastly, with 2012 just having started, are there any books you’re looking forward to getting your hands on?

A. I have TONS I want to read in 2012, but here are just a few. I love dark YA, especially from debut authors.
  1. SPLINTERED by A. G. Howard (A bent and twisted gothic spinoff to Alice in Wonderland) (DEBUT YA AUTHOR)
  2. Follow up to ASHES by Ilsa J. Bick (an apocalyptic Zombie trilogy)
  3. DROWNING INSTINCT by Ilsa J. Bick (A fairy tale with teeth) (Yeah, I’m a fan of Bick)
  4. DON’T TURN AROUND by Michelle Gagnon (A 16-yr old computer hacker version of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) (DEBUT YA AUTHOR)
  5. OLD SOUL by Dan Haring (Yeah, I’m obsessed with Death. What can I say?) (DEBUT YA AUTHOR)

Thank you for giving me answers to questions that have seriously been pestering me, Jordan! I'm glad to know all this now! And speaking of Jordan, and how amazing she is, you all now have the chance to read Abbey's story by entering the giveaway below! Also, be sure to read my review for the book.

The choices I had made led to the moment when fate took over. I would learn a lesson I wasn't prepared for. And Death would be my willing teacher.

Five years ago, Abbey Chandler cheated Death. She survived a horrific car accident, but her "lucky" break came at the expense of her mother's life and changed everything. After she crossed paths with Death—by taking the hand of an ethereal boy made of clouds and sky—she would never be normal again.

Now she's the target of Death's ravens and an innocent boy's life is on the line. When Nate Holden—Abbey's secret crush—starts to climb Alaska's Denali, the Angel of Death stalks him because of her.

And Abbey finds out the hard way that Death never forgets.

Official Giveaway Info:
  • you do NOT have to be a follower
  • there are extra entries available
  • all entrants must be at least 13 years old or older
  • giveaway deadline is January 30, 2012
  • giveaway is open to US + Canada residents only*
  • read my Contest | Giveaway page, as well as my Privacy Notice

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Liz. R said...

I'm really intrigued by this book and all the characters (especially Nate and why Abbey is so interested in him). I also adore the cover! Great post, thank you - and now I have a few more books to add to my to-read list on Goodreads! :)

roro said...

i really liked this book
one of my fav characters was tanner
good luck all

Kelly said...

I'm excited to read this book. Thanks for the opportunity to win!

Kelly said...

The Tweet link in Rafflecopter when you click on "Tweet About the Giveaway" is showing the wrong giveaway.

Amber Hughes said...

Added to my Goodreads TBR! This book sounds really interesting. Thank you very much for the giveaway :-)

LoriStrongin said...

Good interview! I've been reading a lot about this book and it's neat to learn a bit about the author behind it. I'm always eager to read when an author turns Death into an actual character, rather than just a concept or a cliche.


Sarah (saz101) said...

EEEEEEE! Thank you for this interview, Asher!
I really liked On A Dark Wing, and I loved the Schrodinger's Cat inspiration (I'm a total geek), with Nate being in the box! I know precious little about Quantam Physics, but my brother and I love the S. cat thought experiment ;)


Luvdaylilies said...

I loved the chance to learn a bit about Jordan Dane and the book=) I'm adding it to my TBR list, thanks!!!
Lethea B
Luvdaylilies at bellsouth dot net

Chantaal said...

I'm really excited about On a Dark Wing, I've been reading interviews here and there and yours was great!

Felicia said...

I've been dying to get a copy of On A Dark Wing. Great interview! :)

Kaylyn's Book Blog said...

I have been seeing this book a lot and I'd love to read it. I read her book In the Arms of Stone Angels as a review and I loved it I hope once I read this novel I'll love it as well (:

Angela said...

I have been fascinated with Angels ever since I was a little girl, and this seems like a wonderful addition to my YA book collection! Your post makes me want to read it even more!! Ty for this giveaway opportunity!

Kelley said...

Yes, I love the review of this book. I have been wanting so bad to read this book! Through your review I can feel her pain, and can't wait to read it!