Today I have the pleasure of being a host on the SALVAGE blog tour for Rockstar Book Tours, it is the last day of the tour and I have a special treat showcasing a great interview with Alexandra Duncan.   Please enjoy the this interview, get to know Alexandra a bit better and enter in the giveaway to win a copy of SALVAGE.

What inspired you to write SALVAGE and if you could cast your own movie whom would you pick to play the characters?

A lot of the inspiration for Salvage came out of my own experience.  The society aboard the Parastrata, the ship Ava lives on for the first sixteen years of her life, was based in part on growing up in a small, rural church with very strict expectations about behavior. Everyone knew everyone, so in some ways, it felt very much like living in a large extended family. The Gyre, where Ava ends up when she first escapes to Earth, grew out of mission trips I made as a teenager to Haiti and Nicaragua. My experience in college as a reading tutor for disadvantaged kids influenced Ava’s struggle to learn to read.

I have such a hard time with the movie question. We got rid of our TV service several years ago so I could have more time for writing, and now I’m out of the loop about these moving-picture things. I did just finish watching Orphan Black on DVD, though, and I think Tatiana Maslany would make a great Ava. She’s such a chameleon. Gina Torres would kick ass as Perpétue, and I want to go back in time so Amandla Stenberg, who played Rue in the first Hunger Games movie, could be Miyole. For the love interests, Richard Madden, who plays Robb Stark on Game of Thrones, would be a good Luck, and Dev Patel would be great for Rushil, because he looks adorable in glasses. Okay, and he’s an amazing actor. (Seriously, go Google “Dev Patel” and “glasses.” I’ll wait.)

What was your favorite book to read as a teenager?

I read so much as a teenager. It’s hard to pick just one book. In middle school and early high school, I was obsessed with Anne McCaffrey’s Pern novels, and then later I got into Lord of the Rings and Neil Gaiman’s Sandman graphic novels. YA fiction didn’t really boom until I was in college, so most of the novels I read as a teenager were actually for adults. When I did read YA, it was post-apocalyptic and dystopian novels, although I didn’t know the terms for those at the time. I loved The Giver, by Lois Lowry, and The Girl Who Owned a City, by O.T. Nelson. I read both of those to tatters.

What inspired you to become a writer? And what advice would you give to future writers?

I’ve wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember.  Before I could write, I carried around a little sketchbook that I filled with drawings, and then I pestered the adults around me to write down words to accompany the pictures. When I look back, though, the thing that probably sealed my fate was The Story. My mom and dad were divorced, and so on weekends when my dad came to pick me up for a visit, we had a several hour-long car ride between my mother’s house and his. To pass the time, he told me this epic story that was part Lord of the Rings, part Star-Wars, and part Dinotopia. It lasted over several years, from the time I was 8 or so to the time I was 11. Then my dad started encouraging me to tell him a story. I didn’t come up with one right away, but the experience definitely made me think of storytelling as both something transformative and yet completely achievable.

For future writers, I would say to build each other up.  Any success I’ve had I think I owe to having a group of really supportive writer friends who gave me both encouragement and constructive criticism. Find a way to create or join a writing community, even if it’s just you and one dedicated friend at the beginning.  One of the things I love about the YA writing community is that the majority of people cheer each other on, rather than trying to cut down the competition. We’re in this because we love books and stories, and we want good books to reach readers, even if those books aren’t our own.

Do you have an inspiration board? i.e. Pinterest and did you use one for writing SALVAGE?

I’m not organized enough for Pinterest. I’m more of a “scrawl something on sticky note and stick it in your desk or purse” kind of person. I do have a word file on my computer called “interesting things,” which is a compilation of weird stuff I think it cool, and another computer file full of photos that remind me of characters or settings in Salvage.  I sometimes sketch out pictures of characters and objects, but then I hide them in my desk next to the sticky notes. I’m a good enough artist for Pictionary or drawing a D&D character, but not good enough to show anyone my character sketches.

How has being a Librarian influenced your writing?

Librarianship and writing work really well together. As a librarian, I get to read book reviews regularly, which translates to me reading more books and having a good idea of what’s happening in YA literature. Not only that, but the library is an atmosphere where people think writing is a worthwhile use of your time. My library colleagues have been so kind and supportive. They are a really amazing bunch of people. I also snuck a librarian inside joke into my second book, but I don’t know yet if my editor will let me keep it. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

What is your favorite Sci Fi show? and if you could bring back a Sci Fi show that is no longer on the air which one would it be? and why?

I’m kind of tempted to say Farscape, because I will always have a deep and abiding love for murderous muppets. However, Farscape got plenty of airtime to tell its story, so I have to say Firefly.  That was such a unique show with so many compelling characters, and it was cancelled right when it really started to delve into the meta-plot. I know we Firefly fans got Serenity, but I would have liked to have more time watching those characters grow and fight together before Joss Whedon started killing them off. Also, the movie focused so much on the plot surrounding River, but the characters that really intrigued me were Zoë, Wash, Mal, and Kaylee – the ones who didn’t have extraordinary powers. I love ensemble shows where we get to know each character deeply, as opposed to shows where most of the characters are satellites of the two or three leads.

About the Book


Author: Alexandra Duncan

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Pages: 528

Pub. Date: April 1, 2014

Salvage is a thrilling, surprising, and thought-provoking debut novel that will appeal to fans of Across the Universe, by Beth Revis, and The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood. This is literary science fiction with a feminist twist, and it explores themes of choice, agency, rebellion, and family. Ava, a teenage girl living aboard the male-dominated, conservative deep space merchant ship Parastrata, faces betrayal, banishment, and death. Taking her fate into her own hands, she flees to the Gyre, a floating continent of garbage and scrap in the Pacific Ocean. This is a sweeping and harrowing novel about a girl who can't read or write or even withstand the forces of gravity. What choices will she make? How will she build a future on an earth ravaged by climate change? Named by the American Booksellers Association as a Spring 2014 Indies Introduce Pick.

Photo by Lani Woodland
About Alexandra:

Alexandra Duncan is a writer and librarian. Her short fiction has been published in several Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy anthologies and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. Her first novel, Salvage, is forthcoming from Greenwillow Booksin April 2014. She loves anything that gets her hands dirty – pie-baking, leatherworking, gardening, drawing, and rolling sushi. She lives with her husband and two monstrous, furry cats in the mountains of Western North Carolina.

Representation by superagent Kate Schafer Testerman of KT Literary.          

Website   Blog | Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads

Giveaway Details:

10 finished copies of SALVAGE US Only.

Tour Schedule

Week One:

3/24/2014- IceyBooks- Interview

3/25/2014- The Eater of Books!Review

3/26/2014- FiktshunGuest Post

3/27/2014- Two Chicks on BooksGuest Post

3/28/2014- Nerdophiles- Review

Week Two:

3/31/2014- A Book ObsessionInterview

4/1/2014- fangirlish-  Guest Post

4/2/2014- The Book MonstersReview

4/3/2014- Owl Always Be ReadingReview

4/4/2014- Tales of a Ravenous Reader- Interview


  1. Looks like a very good book. Love to read it!

  2. Thanks for the giveaway! This book sounds very interesting!

  3. This book sounds amazing! I cannot wait to read it. Thanks for the giveaway.

  4. This sounds cool, I love when the female leading character is strong in a book. Feminism rules :)

  5. I've heard good things about this book. Can't wait to read it! And that cover is awesome!

  6. Really excited to read this!


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