Thursday, June 16, 2016

Book Tour: "Unplugged" by Donna Freitas

Unplugged (The Wired #1)
by Donna Freitas
Publisher: Harper Children's
Release Date: June 21st 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia


The first book in a provocative new series from acclaimed author Donna Freitas—Feed for a new generation.

Humanity is split into the App World and the Real World—an extravagant virtual world for the wealthy and a dying physical world for the poor. Years ago, Skylar Cruz’s family sent her to the App World for a chance at a better life.

Now Skye is a nobody, a virtual sixteen-year-old girl without any glamorous effects or expensive downloads to make her stand out in the App World. Yet none of that matters to Skye. All she wants is a chance to unplug and see her mother and sister again.

But when the borders between worlds suddenly close, Skye loses that chance. Desperate to reach her family, Skye risks everything to get back to the physical world. Once she arrives, however, she discovers a much larger, darker reality than the one she remembers.

In the tradition of M. T. Anderson’s Feed and Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies, Unplugged kicks off a thrilling and timely sci-fi series for teens from an award-winning writer.

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Author Interview

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Hobbies, pets, fun facts? Tea or coffee?

Coffee definitely! I am a big coffee drinker. I don’t have any pets (I am allergic to most pets) though I run up to any and all Doodle breed dogs and Wheatons, too, since they are non-allergenic and I love being around dogs! They make me happy.

I love to eat, I am a total TV addict, I was a rabid Buffy fan back in the day. And my favorite place to be is by the ocean—I grew up in RI on the w├íter and there is nothing like the beach for me!

What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?

I loved writing the part where Skylar wakes up in the Real World for the first time, and feels what it’s like to be in the world and her body again. The idea of writing a character who would be older (17) yet just learning what it’s like to be in her skin and see the sky ad feel the fun was part of what motivated me to write the book.

Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

Well, writing novels is always based on life experiences on some level, even though it’s also always about imagination too. I’d say that Skylar’s (my protagonist) love of the ocean is definitely based on my love of the ocean, and this is a fantasy/real world inspired by Rhode Island where I grew up. Also, she definitely enjoys romance, as do I!

What inspired you to write this book?

I’m very interested in what’s happening to our world because of technology and social media, and the ways that people are becoming divided between the real and the virtual. Unplugged was inspired by this divide—and I took that divide as far as I could imagine it, to a point where the world actually split into two worlds, one real, one virtual.

Is there a particular author or book that influenced you in any way either as a child or an adult?

When I was maybe ten years old, I was obsessed with reading, and one book I read over and over and over (well, aside from Island of the Blue Dolphins which I probably read 20 times) was called The Girl with the Silver Eyes, about a girl who could move things with her mind—that fascinated me. The idea that there would be a girl with special powers. And there weren’t a lot of books like that when I was a kid!

As an adult, one of my favorite reads ever was the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman. It is absolutely magnificent.

Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?

I would say: don’t be afraid of the page! First drafts are your friend because you can always, always go back and revise. I think of first drafts as playgrounds of a sort, where I get to try any and all things that feel like they might belong to the story because I can always go back and cut.

Is there anything you would like to say to your fans or readers?

(Is it possible I have fans?!!?) I would say: thank you for being willing to enter into these worlds I’ve created, and to be in the mind of my protagonist, Skylar, for a while! I hope Unplugged makes you think and wonder what if and also makes your heart go pitter-patter, romance-wise. And it’s very action-y, so I hope you can’t put it down. J I am grateful to you, my readers.

Follow the Unplugged by Donna Freitas Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

Donna Freitas is an author of fiction, nonfiction, and articles that appear in newspapers, magazines, and on blogs. Born in Rhode Island, Donna now splits her time between New York City and Barcelona.

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