Greetings, friends! It’s a special, special day at Rather Be Reading Blog. Contemporary YA author Kieran Scott has granted me special access to the leading lady of her new trilogy, ONLY EVERYTHING. That’s right. Today I am talking to True a.k.a. Cupid. I know, I know… you are wondering why cupid isn’t a chubby little baby with a bow and arrow. THAT’S A MYTH FOLKS. The true True was banished to Earth after Zeus discovers she has been actively engaged in a relationship with a mortal. In order to get back to her love and back to Olympus, True has to make a love connection between three couples — not realizing just how difficult life in New Jersey for a goddess could be.
A few quick thoughts on the book: My Greek mythology is a little rusty but it came back to me so easily in Only Everything. Plus the entire book was more laugh out loud funny than I ever expected; Scott folded in some details I never would have thought of and it made the story so lush and well-done. True is basically an alien in New Jersey and she tries to act as normal as possible but it’s so hard for her — which makes it even more difficult for her to make love connections. Without powers. Without any idea of how Earth works. In addition to True, the chapters alternate between the POVs of Katrina and Charlie, two other students at the high school. Genuinely nice people who are struggling in some way (Charlie is the new kid at school…again; Katrina’s dad died and her relationship with her mom has become difficult). Friendship, silly / ridiculous times, falling in love, fitting in = ONLY EVERYTHING. So addicting, so fun (seriously, I could not put it down).
And now for that interview with TRUE from Only Everything. Away, we go….
True, it is totally an honor to be talking to you today! I should tell you up front that I ignored my husband for a lot of the time I was reading your story. (Thatâ€™s true love, right?) After all of your â€œadventureâ€ on Earth, what are three tips you would give the next God or Goddess banished to Earth?
Itâ€™s an honor to be interviewed! Now go take your husband out for pie! 🙂 My three tips for any God or Goddess banished to Earth would be:
1) Look in the mirror before you leave the house and make the proper adjustments. (Weâ€™re used to looking perfect all the time, no matter what. Mortals have to put in a lot of work.)
2) Expect your new body to turn on you in sudden and unpleasant ways. (Before I became mortal I had never vomited, sneezed, hiccupped, burped, gained weight, passed gas or sprouted a zit. None are very much fun. Except sneezing. That can leave a pleasant tingling sensation.)
3) Know that nothing will be easy. (On Mount Olympus we can have whatever we want, whenever we want. Having to buy things or work for things or ask for things is an adjustment. But Iâ€™ve found that working for things, at least, can be very rewarding. Thatâ€™s my favorite mortal lesson so far.)
Orion. Your one and only. What is it about your relationship that makes you so confident in forever?
Orion and I have so much in common, but weâ€™re also different enough that weâ€™re constantly surprising each other and challenging each other. I cannot express how much fun it is to go out on a hunt with him, crashing through the woods with our bows drawnâ€”the excitement, the adrenaline, the sweat, the thrill, the danger. Itâ€™s intense. We love to eat well, we love to spin yarns and we could spend days just lying around talking about the past and our future. But Orion is also rash, where Iâ€™ve always been cautious and calculating. He makes decisions by his heart, while I tend to overthink things. We balance each other out on that. He can be selfish at times and cocky, which I find both infuriating and mind-bendingly attractive, but I try to reel him in when he lets his head swell. He thinks I can be too involved with my callingâ€”too work obsessedâ€”and is always looking for ways to distract me and help me stop and see the beauty in the world. I feel as if weâ€™ll never get bored with each other. I canâ€™t imagine my existence without him.
Your relationship with your mother, Aphrodite, is a bit contentious. Do you feel like this experience has made you closer in any way or are you just too different?
On Earth, I think that weâ€™ve learned not to take each other for granted. She has always been my biggest advocate and defender, and I believe I stopped appreciating that when I got involved with Orion. I definitely appreciate it now. I think she has seen me as her errand girl for the last few centuries and hasnâ€™t really recognized the value of the work Iâ€™ve done. Now I think she sees how difficult it is, forming true love, and how dedicated I am to our cause.
Whatâ€™s one thing you learned from your interactions with people in New Jersey that you will apply to your relationships back home?
Great question! Iâ€™ve seen how important family is to Katrina and Charlie and itâ€™s made me think about my relationship with my father and brothers. Iâ€™m close to my sister and even to my mom, though that can be, as you mentioned, complicated. But I hardly ever see my brothers, Phobus and Deimus, because theyâ€™ve sequestered themselves in their palace, and going over there can be very unpleasant. Theyâ€™re so paranoid and jumpy all the time. But thatâ€™s no reason to avoid my own flesh and blood. And my father . . .Â well, I have to accept the fact that heâ€™s Ares. Heâ€™s never going to stop waging wars. But there has to be some aspect of him thatâ€™s redeemable, something I can love. I should be grateful for the fact that it would be virtually impossible for me to lose him the way Katrina lost her father. Maybe Iâ€™ll try to get to know him better. I feel like it would be disrespectful to Katrina and to the memory of the dad she loved so much, if I didnâ€™t.
I really enjoyed getting to know Charlie and Katrina in book 1. Will readers be reuniting with them in the next book? (I hope so!)
Aside from Hephaestus, theyâ€™re pretty much my only friends at Lake Carmody High, so yes, theyâ€™ll be around. As long as I donâ€™t do anything to mess things up!
Which celebrity romance do you find yourself shaking your head at right now?
I wish this whole Justin Bieber/Selena Gomez thing would fizzle already. Too many breakups are not a good thing. Also Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone. Love them both, but they almost never look happy when theyâ€™re together. Have you noticed that if theyâ€™re smiling, which is rare, the smile doesnâ€™t extend to their eyes? Thatâ€™s a major giveaway that somethingâ€™s not quite right. Maybe if I could get in there and talk with them I could fix whateverâ€™s going awry.
As someone responsible for so many love connections, what do you think is the most important part of keeping a relationship everlasting?
Honesty and trust are very important. You have to pick your battles, of course, and let the little things go. If you love someone, you shouldnâ€™t nitpick every little thing that bothers you about them or your relationship, but if thereâ€™s a big issue, you must discuss it. Preferably in a calm and rational tone of voice at a point in the day when youâ€™re not both stressed and/or exhausted. (So not during finals or after the senior lock-in.) Itâ€™s also important to keep things fresh, do the things you like to do together, and be there for each other, no matter what.
After all yourâ€¦ ahem, difficultyâ€¦ getting settled on Earth, whatâ€™s one power from Mount Olympus that you wish you would have been allowed to bring with you?
When I first arrived, I would have said the power to read minds, because it would have made the matchmaking so much easier. But now I realize I never would have gotten to know Charlie and Katrina as well as I have if that power had been available to me. So I suppose I wouldnâ€™t mind having the power to conjure things. Sometimes a girl just really needs a lipstick, or a headband, or, you know, a replacement cell phone for an awful jerk boy. Things happen.
You’re in luck! Your chance to win a signed arc of ONLY EVERYTHING thanks to Kieran Scott! (Open to readers in U.S. and Canada; must be 13 years old or older to enter. Once the winner is notified, winner has 48 hours to respond or another winner is chosen.)