Friday, February 2, 2018

A Chat With Adrianne Finlay, Author of YOUR ONE & ONLY

We have with us today Adrianne Finlay, whose debut novel Your One & Only hits shelves on February 6. Keep reading to learn what inspired her to write her story, who her favorite authors are, and more.

Originally from Ithaca, New York, Adrianne Finlay now lives in Cedar Falls, Iowa with her husband, the poet J. D. Schraffenberger, and their two young daughters. She received her PhD in literature and creative writing from Binghamton University, and is an associate professor of English at Upper Iowa University in Fayette, Iowa.

She is also an avid soap maker, and sells handmade soap locally to raise money for type 1 diabetes research.
(photo and text taken from Finlay's
Goodreads profile)

What inspired you to write a young adult novel about clones?

We have a strong sense, especially in the United States, of the value of individual identity. We seek out those things about ourselves that make us special. Clones challenge that idea, and by doing so, bring to mind all kinds of science fiction possibilities. From Jurassic Park, to Orphan Black, to Battlestar Galactica, clones have always highlighted fundamental questions like what defines our humanity? What is the connection between nature and nurture? What happens when we manipulate the natural order of the world? And what dangers arise when we presume to control that natural world?

Can you tell us a little bit about the world of Your One & Only?

Your One & Only takes place in a world where humans have died off in the Slow Plague and been replaced by nine different clone models. So Althea-310 has nine sisters, and every ten years, ten new Althea sisters are born. When the clones create Jack, the first new human in centuries, Althea-310 can’t help her fascination with him, and it disrupts her relationship with her sisters and the rest of the community. It’s dangerous to be an individual in a world of clones, and Althea-310 and Jack risk their lives and the life of the community by wanting to be together.

If Your One & Only were to be adapted into a movie, which actors would you like to see play Jack and Althea?

I’m going to go with Tom Holland and Zendaya, and not just because their lip synch battle was so adorable. Okay, so maybe that is why.

Do you think we can expect to see a sequel to Your One & Only in the future, or will it be a standalone novel?

At this point there are no plans in place for a sequel.

Which of your favorite authors do you think has inspired your writing style the most?

I have such a mix of favorite books and authors. A few of them are Lois Lowry, Lauren Oliver, S.J. Kincaid, Emily St. John Mandel, Dorothy Dunnett, Jane Austen, and Ernest Hemingway.

What is one underrated book you would like to recommend to everyone?

I don’t think it’s underrated necessarily, but an older book that I love and doesn’t get read as much anymore is The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier. It’s so well done, and about sticking up for what you believe in, even when it’s difficult, which I think is an important message.

Release Date: February 6, 2018

Jack is a walking fossil. The only human among a sea of clones. It’s been hundreds of years since humanity died off in the slow plague, leaving the clones behind to carry on human existence. Over time they’ve perfected their genes, moving further away from the imperfections of humanity. But if they really are perfect, why did they create Jack?

While Jack longs for acceptance, Althea-310 struggles with the feeling that she’s different from her sisters. Her fascination with Jack doesn’t help. As Althea and Jack’s connection grows stronger, so does the threat to their lives. What will happen if they do the unthinkable and fall in love?
(taken from