The time it was about A Million Junes

Posted May 16, 2017 by Stacee in Blog Tours and Hops, Giveaways, Interviews / 6 Comments

I am a ridiculous fangirl for Emily Henry’s words.  I absolutely fell in love with The Love That Split the World and same for A Million Junes.  So when the blog tour invite came for AMJ, I’m pretty sure I responded in all shouty caps.

Before we get to Emily’s interview, let’s check out the book.

Title: A Million Junes
Author: Emily Henry
Publisher: Razorbill
Pub Date: May 16, 2017
Pages: 400
Find it: PRH | Indiebound | B&N | Amazon | Goodreads

Romeo and Juliet meets One Hundred Years of Solitude in Emily Henry’s brilliant follow-up to The Love That Split the World, about the daughter and son of two long-feuding families who fall in love while trying to uncover the truth about the strange magic and harrowing curse that has plagued their bloodlines for generations.

In their hometown of Five Fingers, Michigan, the O’Donnells and the Angerts have mythic legacies. But for all the tall tales they weave, both founding families are tight-lipped about what caused the century-old rift between them, except to say it began with a cherry tree.

Eighteen-year-old Jack “June” O’Donnell doesn’t need a better reason than that. She’s an O’Donnell to her core, just like her late father was, and O’Donnells stay away from Angerts. Period.

But when Saul Angert, the son of June’s father’s mortal enemy, returns to town after three mysterious years away, June can’t seem to avoid him. Soon the unthinkable happens: She finds she doesn’t exactly hate the gruff, sarcastic boy she was born to loathe.

Saul’s arrival sparks a chain reaction, and as the magic, ghosts, and coywolves of Five Fingers conspire to reveal the truth about the dark moment that started the feud, June must question everything she knows about her family and the father she adored. And she must decide whether it’s finally time for her—and all of the O’Donnells before her—to let go.

Sounds good, right?

1. Please give the elevator pitch for A Million Junes.

It depends how many floors you’re going up/down. The shortest of short pitches is One-Hundred Years of Solitude meets Romeo and Juliet! The slightly longer version of it is that A Million Junes is the story of two feuding families from the same small town in northern Michigan, and how the two youngest members of these families, June O’Donnell and Saul Angert, puzzle out the truth about their histories and their legacies with a little help from the magic that runs rampant on their overlapping land.

2. What sparked the idea?

Usually, when I start writing, I have a few ideas drifting around in my head and I don’t totally understand their connection, even if I feel it. For me, the writing process is largely about working inward from these seemingly disparate thoughts until I see where they connect. On a practical level, I’m not sure what made me choose certain plot elements, or even characters, but I do know that I was spending a lot of time thinking about a few different things at the time, and these things informed the book.

One of these was that my family dog had just passed away, and I was dealing with the heartbreak of that. I’d lost a couple people before but I was really overwhelmed by how painful that goodbye in particular was. I was really struck by the way that something so small, something you couldn’t even have a conversation with, and that had spent most of its life in one house, one yard, could leave such a huge mark on my entire family, and all our significant others. I think, so often, we think of leaving a mark as doing BIG things, IMPORTANT things, and it can be. But I also was and am blown away that such a small, contained life could bring so much joy and comfort into the world. And the way that you can feel so known, and so much like you KNOW someone (or some-dog), even without knowing everything about them. It might sound silly, but I can honestly say that losing my dog changed my perception of what makes a life valuable. I realized that when I get to the end of my life, I want to look back and know that, if nothing else, I loved my handful of people and whatever plot of grass I had around me very, very well.

So I really wanted to write a book about processing grief, and about loving someone you can never fully know, but I also wanted to write something that honored those small stories. June’s late father has left behind all these larger-than-life stories that she uses to define him in her memory, but he’s so much more than that in the small stories, the ones that often don’t even seem worth telling.

3. Why do you love June and Saul and why should we root for them?

I find this question so hard to answer! I honestly don’t often understand why I love people. It’s easier to say why you like them. I like that June is funny and a reliable friend, a loving older sister. I like that she’s made room for her step-father in her life after losing her father, and that she appreciates the beauty of the world she lives in. I like that, for the most part, she’s more laid back than I could have DREAMED of being in high school and mostly focuses on enjoying life, more than fulfilling a checklist. I like that Saul works very hard at his, sometimes unrewarding, relationship with his father and that he understands June’s grief and brings out a very honest side of her, just because he tends to be very honest. He’s not afraid of his emotions or of sharing his feelings.

I think what I love most about them, and why I root for them, is that they understand and relate to one another well enough that they can’t help but want what’s best for one another. I think they bring out a really selfless, patient kind of love in one another because while, externally, they’re extremely different, they’ve really been a lot of the same places.

4. What was the weirdest thing you googled while researching?

Hmmm….  I think that would be the “Great Molasses Flood of Boston.” I’m not sure that research made it into the book or not, but it happened. Also “rat memory experiments.”

5. Without spoilers, what was your favorite scene to write?

This won’t mean much unless you’ve read it, but June’s final scene out in her front yard.

Speed {ish} round:

1. You find out that you’re being published for the first time. Describe the next 5 minutes.

Projectile vomiting and thinking of literally 200 ways this could go wrong!

2. What three things would you take to a desert island?

Is my husband a thing? Husband, dog, box set of Harry Potter.

3. You can only read one book for the rest of your life. What is it?

Hm… Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows.

4. What book character would you want to date and who would you want to be your BFF?

Date: Maybe Howl of Howl’s Moving Castle? Or either of the Weasley twins, tbh. Best friend: Maybe Ronan Lynch (he’d always come through for you) or Scarlett Epstein (she’d make you laugh until you peed).

5. What is the one thing about publishing you wish someone would have told you?

You likely will never again write as easily as you used to but you WILL write again! I honestly wish I’d treasured that time of writing without publishing a lot more than I did. Once you realize someone’s ACTUALLY going to read your books, it becomes a lot harder to write. Once you realize people are ACTUALLY expecting you to write, it becomes a lot harder to write. I’m finally starting to break through some of those walls again, but I do doubt I’ll ever have that exact mindless, breathless rush that writing used to be. At times that can be really sad (Hello, I’m Emily and I’m terrible at change) but I’m definitely finding new ways to write and new bits of joy in the process. So far, every book has been different, and I’ve accepted that my only expectation from each can be that I WILL be surprised by how the process unfolds.

But to those toiling away in the pre-publishing stages of writing, try your best to really, really love and appreciate how it feels just to write for yourself!

6. You wake up and discover you are Bella in Twilight. You know how it plays out. What do you do differently? {Huge thanks to Bookish Broads for letting me use this question!}

Break up with Edward but stay best friends with Alice. Eventually, she’d agree to turn me I (there are essentially no drawbacks to being a Twilight vampire??? Except that werewolves smell bad to you?) and I would be VERY appreciative whenever she bought me clothes. I would never roll my eyes at her, and we’d possibly become masked vigilantes in the eventual dystopian future/present.

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Emily Henry is the author of The Love That Split the World. She is a full-time writer, proofreader, and donut connoisseur. She studied creative writing at Hope College and the New York Center for Art & Media Studies, and now spends most of her time in Cincinnati, Ohio, and the part of Kentucky just beneath it.

She tweets @EmilyHenryWrite.

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Huge thanks to Penguin for the invite and to Emily for taking the time! Keep scrolling for giveaway and definitely check out the rest of the blog tour for extra goodies!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enter for a chance to win one (1) of five (5) copies of A Million Junes by Emily Henry (ARV: $16.99 each).

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on May 15, 2017 and 12:00 AM on June 2, 2017. Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about June 7, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

Week One:
May 15 – The Paige-Turner – Review & Mood Board
May 16 – Adventures of a Book Junkie – Author Q&A
May 17 – The Innocent Smiley – Favorite Unsolved Mysteries
May 18 – Arctic Books – Review
May 19 – Twirling Pages – Review

Week Two:
May 22 – ButterMyBooks – Book Look
May 23 – Ex Libris – Review
May 24 – The Children’s Book Review – Guest Post
May 25 – The Young Folks – Review
May 26 – Brittany’s Book Rambles – Guest Post

Week Three:
May 29 – Mundie Moms – Review
May 30 – Tales of the Ravenous Reader – Author Q&A
May 31 – Fiction Fare – Podcast Author Q&A
June 1 – YA Bibliophile – Guest Post
June 2 – Forever Young AdultA Million Junes Cocktail

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6 Responses to “The time it was about A Million Junes”

  1. Cindy

    Romeo+Juliet and magic, Yes please! I never really thought about the pressure as an author would feel when writing a book and you’ve been published. It’s must be hard thinking about deadlines and if people would like your book. Thank you for sharing that! Just know you have fans and we root for you! I loved The Love That Split The World.

  2. danielle hammelef

    This has been on my to-read list since I first read about it. I haven’t read any books by this author yet, but am excited to start.

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