This year I am excited to be participating in the Ontario Teen Book Fest Blog Tour. I am especially excited to be spotlighting YA author Mary McCoy. Her debut novel, Dead to Me was one of my favorite books that I read last year.
The Ontario Teen Book Fest is an amazing event and I am so happy to be participating in the blog tour for it. I attended last year and had an absolute blast. It is a FREE UNTICKETED event featuring multiple bestselling Young Adult authors.
Scroll down for my Spotlight and Interview with Mary as well as a giveaway for a poster signed by all of the attending authors.
When: Saturday March 12th, 9 am to 5pm
Where: Colony High School 3850 E. Riverside Drive, Ontario, CA 91761
The Ontario Teen Book Fest Website: http://www.ontariotbf.org/
The event is sponsored by Once Upon A Time. They will have books available for purchase at the event. There will also be t-shirts and posters available for purchase as well.
Their website: http://www.mrsnelsons.com/
*Blog Tour Schedule*
February 22nd – Spotlight on Andrew Smith – What A Nerd Girl Says
February 23rd – Spotlight on Alexandra Monir – The Consummate Reader
February 24th – Spotlight on April Tucholke – Adventures of a Book Junkie
February 25th – Spotlight on Alexis Bass – A Traveling Book
February 26th – Spotlight on Marissa Meyer – Read Now Sleep Later
February 27th – Spotlight on Sara Elizabeth Santana – Movies, Shows and Books
February 28th – Spotlight on Robin Reul – Recently Acquired Obsessions
February 29th – Spotlight on Katherine Kottaras – iFandoms Collide
March 1st – Spotlight on Stephanie Diaz – My Fangirl Chronicles
March 2nd – Spotlight on Virginia Boecker – The Reader’s Antidote
March 3rd – Spotlight on Mary McCoy – Book You Very Much
March 4th – Spotlight on Brad Gottfred – Seeking Bazinga
March 5th – Spotlight on Michelle Levy – My Fangirl Chronicles
March 6th – Spotlight on Elana K Arnold – Read Now Sleep Later
March 7th – Spotlight on Kristin Halbrook – What A Nerd Girl Says
March 8th – Spotlight on Jessica Brody – The Windy Pages
March 9th – Spotlight on Nicole Maggi – Nite Lite Book Reviews
March 10th – Spotlight on Jay Asher – A Bookish Escape
*Spotlight on Mary McCoy*
Mary McCoy is a writer and a librarian at the Los Angeles Public Library. She has also been a contributor to On Bunker Hill and the 1947project, where she wrote stories about Los Angeles’s notorious past. She grew up in western Pennsylvania and studied at Rhodes College and the University of Wisconsin. Mary now lives in Los Angeles with her husband and son. Her debut novel, Dead to Me, is a YA mystery set in the glamorous, treacherous world of 1940s Hollywood.
For more information visit Mary’s website here
LA Confidential for the YA audience. This alluring noir YA mystery with a Golden Age Hollywood backdrop will keep you guessing until the last page.
“Don’t believe anything they say.”
Those were the last words that Annie spoke to Alice before turning her back on their family and vanishing without a trace. Alice spent four years waiting and wondering when the impossibly glamorous sister she idolized would return to her–and what their Hollywood-insider parents had done to drive her away.
When Annie does turn up, the blond, broken stranger lying in a coma has no answers for her. But Alice isn’t a kid anymore, and this time she won’t let anything stand between her and the truth, no matter how ugly. The search for those who beat Annie and left her for dead leads Alice into a treacherous world of tough-talking private eyes, psychopathic movie stars, and troubled starlets–and onto the trail of a young runaway who is the sole witness to an unspeakable crime. What this girl knows could shut down a criminal syndicate and put Annie’s attacker behind bars–if Alice can find her first. And she isn’t the only one looking
Evoking classic film noir, debut novelist Mary McCoy brings the dangerous glamour of Hollywood’s Golden Age to life, where the most decadent parties can be the deadliest, and no drive into the sunset can erase the crimes of past.
Q: What was the inspiration for your debut novel Dead to Me?
When I moved to LA ten years ago, I got really into film noir and old detective novels. I really wanted to pay an homage to those kinds of stories, but I also wanted to write something where the female characters were up front and center, instead of being relegated to femme fatales and victims.
Q: You have been a contributor to One Bunker Hill and 1947project where you have written about “Los Angeles’s notorious past”. What is it about LA in the 1940s that made you want to write about it?
Murder and mayhem and corruption, oh my! My book is set in 1948, which is the year after the Black Dahlia murder. It’s also set around the time of a few other notorious LA crimes that I’ve done a lot of reading and writing about: the Lila Leeds drug bust, the disappearance of Jean Spangler, Brenda Allen’s prostitution ring and the corrupt LAPD vice squad. The list goes on and on.
Q: Are there any other time periods/places you would like to write about?
I’ll never say never, but so far, I haven’t gotten a bee in my bonnet to write another historical novel. My next project is set at a summer camp!
Q: What was your research process for Dead to Me like? Did you visit any of the places you talked about in the book?
I’m a librarian, so of course, I was obsessed with getting every last fact right. I even found a public transit map of Los Angeles from the 1940s and made sure that Alice’s adventures around town on the Red Car were accurate.
I visited almost every spot I wrote about for the book, and most of the characters’ homes are based on actual places. Of course, my favorite place to do “research” was the time I went to Musso & Frank Grill for steak and a stake-out of the kitchen.
Q: What is your writing process like?
A mixture of diligent slogging and fevered wind sprints. The most important thing for me is sitting down as often as possible to write, whether I’m feeling inspired or not and simply doing the work.
Q: What were some of your favorite writers growing up?
I loved Roald Dahl, Lois Lowry, Ellen Raskin, and Louise Fitzhugh. Sophie, Anastasia Krupnik, Turtle Wexler, and Harriet M. Welsh were my role models and heroes when I was growing up, and it’s probably because I loved them so much that I decided to write books myself.
Q: For anyone who liked Dead to Me what are some places in Los Angeles that you think they would like to visit?
Okay, here’s an LA history nerd itinerary for you:
Start off by admiring the architecture at Union Station and the Terminal Annex Post Office, then take the Red Line to the Pershing Square stop. Hop off, grab a burrito at Grand Central Market and check out the Bradbury Building which is, for my money, the most beautiful sight in Los Angeles, then follow it up by skulking around the halls at the Biltmore Hotel and check out the zodiac chandelier in the 2nd floor Rotunda at the Central Library.
Some of my other favorite historical places are The Last Bookstore, Musso & Frank Grill, the HMS Bounty, the Egyptian Theater, the El Rey, Canter’s Deli, Langer’s Deli, and the Silent Movie Theater.
I think there are at least five places you can get pastrami on my LA history nerd itinerary.
Q: Can you tell us what you are working on now?
My next book is called CAMP SO AND SO, and it will be published by Carolrhoda Lab in spring 2017. It’s set at a summer camp where each cabin of characters finds themselves trapped into acting out a warped version of a classic camp story. In order to make it out in one piece, they have to figure out who’s pulling the strings and how to take control of their own stories again.
It’s fun and weird and metafictional, and I can’t wait for people to read it!
Enter for a chance to win a poster signed by all the authors attending OTBF. The contest is NOT International (US only) and will run from February 22-March 13th.