Saturday, July 21, 2018

A Chat With Sara Raasch, Author of THESE REBEL WAVES

I'm proud to present Sara Raasch here on my blog! She's releasing her exciting novel, These Rebel Waves, on August 7, and it promises lots of awesome pirates and romance. Today, we'll talk a little about her inspiration behind the novel and how she built it. To learn more about her novel or background, click here or visit Sara's website. 

Sara Raasch has known she was destined for bookish things since the age of five, when her friends had a lemonade stand and she tagged along to sell her hand-drawn picture books too.

Not much has changed since then — her friends still cock concerned eyebrows when she attempts to draw things and her enthusiasm for the written word still drives her to extreme measures. Her NYTimes bestselling Snow Like Ashes trilogy is available now and her upcoming pirate fantasy, These Rebel Waves, releases Summer 2018.

None of those feature her hand-drawn pictures. 
(taken from 
Sara's website)
What sparked your interest in writing a pirate-themed YA novel?

So many things!! I call this the "book of my obsessions" -- I put a lot of my fandoms into it. The Golden Age of Piracy has long been a favorite subject of mine, plus colonial style/history, plus the Spanish Inquisition...I salivate just talking about it!

If you had to pick one favorite character from These Rebel Waves, who would it be?

Teo. He's the six-year-old little brother of Lu's friend, and through tangled circumstances, finds himself tagging along on the swashbuckling adventure Lu and Vex go on. He's sweet and hysterical and totally unaware of the fact that he's only six years old (one of the first things he does upon hearing someone insult Lu is threaten them right back). I love him!

In your opinion, which is more challenging: writing romance or action scenes?

Romance! So much of a romance scene landing properly relies on hitting previous beats throughout the story -- building tension and relationships over the course of the book (and sometimes bookS). Action scenes can just pop up whenever they please!

Did this pirate tale require much research on your part while writing?

Oh my god, YES! I have a stack of books I still refer to. As I mentioned above, I drew a lot of reference from our world events, so I have books on the Spanish Inquisition, colonial style, and the Golden Age of Piracy; but I also have books on ships, steam engines, rivers/geology, Spanish architecture, old timey Barcelona, the Caribbean, and SO MANY OMG, my bookshelf hates me.

How will this new Steam Raiders series differ from the Snow Like Ashes books?

I think the list would be shorter to say how it's similar! It's completely different -- new world, new characters, new stakes. One of the things that makes it similar (and that I hope readers latch onto like they did in SLA!) is the different facets of belief. Believing in yourself, in a higher power, in a government, etc.

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

There are two that I rave about CONSTANTLY, and had huge influences as I was writing These Rebel Waves: The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson and the Captive Prince trilogy by CS Pacat. Both LGBT action/adventure fantasies with totally twisted politics and delicious, delicious romance!

Release Date: August 7, 2018

Adeluna is a soldier. Five years ago, she helped the magic-rich island of Grace Loray overthrow its oppressor, Argrid, a country ruled by religion. But adjusting to postwar life has not been easy. When an Argridian delegate vanishes during peace talks with Grace Loray’s new Council, Argrid demands brutal justice—but Lu suspects something more dangerous is at work.

Devereux is a pirate. As one of the outlaws called stream raiders who run rampant on Grace Loray, he pirates the island’s magic plants and sells them on the black market. But after Argrid accuses raiders of the diplomat’s abduction, Vex becomes a target. An expert navigator, he agrees to help Lu find the Argridian—but the truth they uncover could be deadlier than any war.

Benat is a heretic. The crown prince of Argrid, he harbors a secret obsession with Grace Loray’s forbidden magic. When Ben’s father, the king, gives him the shocking task of reversing Argrid’s fear of magic, Ben has to decide if one prince can change a devout country—or if he’s building his own pyre.

As conspiracies arise, Lu, Vex, and Ben will have to decide who they really are . . . and what they are willing to become for peace. (taken from