Monday, December 8, 2014

Compulsion By Martina Boone Book Blitz !!

Release Date: 10/28/14
ISBN: 1481411225
Simon Pulse, Simon Teen
448 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
Three plantations. Two wishes. One ancient curse.

All her life, Barrie Watson has been a virtual prisoner in the house where she lives with her shut-in mother. When her mother dies, Barrie promises to put some mileage on her stiletto heels. But she finds a new kind of prison at her aunt’s South Carolina plantation instead--a prison guarded by an ancient spirit who long ago cursed one of the three founding families of Watson Island and gave the others magical gifts that became compulsions.

Stuck with the ghosts of a generations-old feud and hunted by forces she cannot see, Barrie must find a way to break free of the family legacy. With the help of sun-kissed Eight Beaufort, who knows what Barrie wants before she knows herself, the last Watson heir starts to unravel her family's twisted secrets. What she finds is dangerous: a love she never expected, a river that turns to fire at midnight, a gorgeous cousin who isn’t what she seems, and very real enemies who want both Eight and Barrie dead.

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Compulsion is available anywhere books are sold. Signed copies are available from One More Page Books. You can also order with the special “I have a Compulsion for reading” bookplate from Eight Cousins.

About the Author
Martina Boone was born in Prague and spoke several languages before learning English. She fell in love with words and never stopped delighting in them.

She’s the founder of, a Writer’s Digest 101 Best Websites for Writers site, and, a site devoted to encouraging literacy and all this YA Series.
From her home in Virginia, where she lives with her husband, children, and Auggie the wonder dog, she enjoys writing contemporary fantasy set in the kinds of magical places she’d love to visit. When she isn’t writing, she’s addicted to travel, horses, skiing, chocolate flavored tea, and anything with Nutella on it.

Author Links:
Website | Blog | Tumblr | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter

Before I get to the human characters, I have to say that setting is very definitely a character in the HEIRS OF WATSON ISLAND trilogy. Watson Island is loosely based on Edisto Island, and I borrowed from actual Charleston area plantation history to create the three plantations that shaped who the three families became. There was tons of material to work with-I mean, pirate treasure, ancient spirit witches, blood feuds, lonely, demented characters, curses, forbidden romance . . . How could I resist?
My dream cast of plantations would include Boone Hall Plantation, with bits of Magnolia Plantation and Drayton Hall thrown in. For the ruins of Colesworth Place, I’d love to use part of the columns that are all that’s left of the Windsor Plantation in Port Gibson, Mississippi. There is a Windsor Plantation on Edisto Island, too, but it doesn’t have the same level of drama and echoing sadness.
Okay, and now on to the fun part. Human characters.
Barrie first. I’d love to Jennifer Lawrence play Barrie, of course, but basically, I’d like Jennifer Lawrence to play the main character in every movie, so that may not tell you much. I might go with Nicola Peltz.
Eight (Charles Robert Beaufort, VIII)
Liam Helmsworth, I think, although Alex Pettyfer is probably the default here for most readers, and of course I wouldn’t turn him down. J
Barrie’s cousin Cassie.
Rooney Mara. This one’s a no-brainer for me. She could do Scarlett/Vivien Leigh, and I think she’d pull off the various sides of Cassie with the complexity that Cassie needs.
Barrie’s godfather Mark.
Idris Elba. I can picture him ROCKING a pink Chanel suit and heels and shaking his booty and singing along with Whoopie Goldberg in Sister Act doing “Hail Holy Queen.” I wonder if he’d be willing to shave?
Barrie’s Aunt Pru.
Hard to believe that Reese Witherspoon is about the right age, but she is. And she would do a fabulous job.
Eight’s father Seven (Charles Robert Beaufort, VII).
If they cast Patrick Dempsey as Seven, then McDreamy might finally get the girl he missed in Sweet Home Alabama. Maybe. Eventually. By the end of the series—if I decide that Seven is truly good enough for Pru.

Q. What’s your favorite thing about Compulsion?
A. I secretly love Gothic novels. There was a point where Daphne du Maurier's REBECCA and Mary Stewart's AIRS ABOVE THE GROUND were among my favorite novels. I've always adored books with exotically dangerous settings, quirky characters, and elements of mystery and suspense. Since I'm from Prague, one of the most magical, broodingly beautiful cities in the world, the bar for magical locations is set pretty hight. But the South. Ah, there I have all the elements I love—a haunted past, regret, anger, continuing conflict, and questions of morality galore. Southern plantations are the closest thing to moldering abbeys and decaying castles that we have in the United States. I'm grateful to Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl for reminding me of how much I love all the elements they included in BEAUTIFUL CREATURES, because their series got me thinking about the possibilities of Spanish moss and crumbling Southern mansions. My favorite thing about Compulsion, hands down, is the setting and how it shaped (and twisted) the characters and families who live there.
Q: What do you want readers to take away from COMPULSION?
A. That you can pick your family, the people you love. And that you need to do more than just survive your life. You have to go out and live your life.
Q. Is there a one sentence pitch for COMPULSION?
Someone the School Library Journal recently said it’s a bit Gone with the Wind and a bit Romeo and Juliet with a dose of paranormal all wrapped up in an engrossing mystery. I’ll take that! :) Really it’s a Southern Gothic romance about teens from three South Carolina plantations whose ancestors bargained with an ancient spirit and received two magical gifts and a curse that has passed down through the generations so that the current generations are faced with dangerous situations and family feuds, and have to unravel the mystery of the curse to save themselves.
Q: Can you sum up COMPULSION in one word?
A: Sure. The title: Compulsion. I think my editor nailed it coming up with that.
Q: So COMPULSION wasn't the original title?
A: The book has had three titles, and I love them all. My working title was FIRE CARRIER, and when you read the book, you'll get that. My brilliant acquiring editor, Annette Pollert, who edited the book all the way up to copyedits, came up with BEHOLDEN, which everyone loved, and that also suits the book perfectly. But the bottom line is that COMPULSION fits several themes in the book and also conveys a sense of energy that I hope I've achieved in the plot. It's by far my favorite, and it carries through into the rest of the series.
Q: How did you come up with the idea for COMPULSION?
A: I wrote a short story for an anthology that ended up having some of the same characters in it, and I knew I wasn't done with the place or the characters yet. But it wasn't until I dreamed about a ball of fire drifting through the woods and setting a river
aflame that I had the anchoring visual for the book. The rest all came from asking why and doing a lot of research and brainstorming, which did include two separate research trips to the Charleston area.
Q: Why did you want to tell this story?
A: Pirates, ghosts, witches, voodoo, treasure, forbidden love, mystery, murder . . . Who wouldn't want to tell this story? Seriously, it's the loneliness of the characters, their quest to find each other, and ultimately their ability to save each other or destroy each other. The characters became as real for me as my own family, and I wanted to share them to make them live for other people, too.
Q. What is the weirdest piece of research you had to do when writing COMPULSION?
A. I researched a LOT of off the wall things for this book: pirates, shipwrecks, ghosts, witches, voodoo, hoodoo, Cherokee witchcraft, slavery, drug running, lost treasures of the Civil War, Confederate privateering, the Red Sea Gold, indigo production, drag queens/drag shows, secret rooms, furniture with hidden drawers, ball lightning . . . The thing that fascinated me the most on a research level was the various forms of magic that were present in the South with the confluence of belief systems brought there by slaves from different regions and religions intersecting with Native American belief systems. I spent a lot of time Googling specific spells and curses and trying to work out how the interpretation of them might have changed over three hundred years.
Q. Were there any scenes that had to be cut that you wish would have stayed in?
A. I honestly can’t think of a single scene I cut out fully. There were pieces of scenes that I took out, and the majority of those were ghost scenes. There’s a particular one that I can’t share, but I fully intend to make it the foundation of a whole book someday. : )
Q: COMPULSION is part of a trilogy. Did you already have the series written when you submitted the manuscript?
A: I never meant to write a series, but I knew I wasn't done with Watson Island yet, so after I'd written the second draft, I gave both Eight and Cassie little sisters. I intended to let them help me explore the magical aspects of those families in companion novels. When my agent and I were getting ready to submit COMPULSION to publishers, I very quickly wrote synopses for the novels. Just quick sketches. And then I immediately went to work writing the second book to keep from going crazy while I was waiting to see if COMPULSION would sell. We already had a phone call scheduled with a publisher for a Monday, and my agent called me at five o'clock on Thursday night to tell me that Annette, my future editor, wanted to talk to me the next day, and did I have time. Um, does McDonalds sell hamburgers? Also, he said, Annette wanted to know if I would consider making the other two books a series. Sure, I said. Of course. And then I had until ten-thirty the next morning to come up with ideas: plot and character arcs for the series, a plot that was progressive instead of episodic, themes that would carry across the books. All that. So I called my critique partners and begged for brainstorming help. We were all focusing on plot at first, and then when I was just talking things trough, I
finally realized what the character progressions had to be. Instead of crying about the loss of what I'd already written in Book Two, I got excited about the series idea instead, and I also realized that I could use what I'd done for Book Two. Just in a different way.
Q: How did the phone call go?
A: Awesome. I fell in love with Annette. We talked forever, and it went by like it was five minutes.
Q. Did anything change in the story as you were writing COMPULSION?
A. Besides me, you mean? Um. There was a character who was meant to be a very minor character who kind of took over the book. But also there were things that changed in every draft: motivation, or past history, or character, or plot. I got to know my characters better each time, and the more I knew them, the more something changed.
Q: What was the most surprising part of writing COMPULSION?
A: How it turned out. People who read my blog, may know that I used to think of myself as a plotter. I wrote outlines. Long outlines. Thirty or forty thousand word outlines. And if someone asked me to write a synopsis of a book, I had to first write the outline – at which point, I eventually realized that I wasn't writing an outline at all; I was writing a first draft. I don't know where I first heard the word, but someone somewhere mentioned doing something they called a discovery draft. Coming across that term was one of the biggest AHA! moments of my life. So yeah. It turns out I'm not a plotter, but I'm also not completely a pantser. I'm a plantser. With COMPULSION, I knew where I was going – I had that draft to use as a roadmap, but things kept changing. I was constantly surprised.
Q: What do you think will shock readers the most in COMPULSION?
A: There are a lot of surprises—I hope. At least I hear from readers that there are surprises. And several of them are meant to be shocking, but they are shocking in different ways. I'd love to hear from readers (privately or at least in a non-spoilery way ☺) what they think shocked them the most.
Q: What do you want readers to take away from COMPULSION?
A. That you can pick your family, the people you love. And that you need to do more than just survive your life. You have to go out and live your life.
Q: Who is your favorite character in COMPULSION?
A: This is such a mean question—and yes, I know I ask this of other writers when we do interviews for But it is mean. Choosing between characters is like choosing between your children. I'm also going to make a distinction between who is my favorite character and who is my favorite character to write. I think Barrie is my favorite character, because I know things about her that no one else knows yet—things she doesn't even know herself. But it's a close call, because Eight is an amazing guy— I'm half in love with him as I write him. And then Mark, and Pru, and Lula, and Cassie. Oh, Cassie. Sigh.
Q: Which character in COMPULSION is the most fun to write?
That one is super easy. Mark. He was meant to be a tiny part of the story—really, he was originally a ficelle, a character who is really just there to deliver information. But his personality took over my heart.
Q: If you could hang out with one of the characters from COMPULSION, who would you pick?
A: Well, I'm married. And I'm old. Er. Older. So I shouldn't say Eight, right? Okay, yeah. Definitely not Eight. And if we take Eight out of the picture, then I'd have to say Mark, because anyone would have a blast hanging out with Mark.
Q. How would you describe Barrie?
A. Sheltered, feisty, stubborn, compassionate, and courageous.
Imagine growing up with a mother who never went outside and was scared and jealous every time that you were able to leave. The main loving influence in Barrie’s life was her godfather Mark, the ex-drag queen who stepped in to take care of her when she was a baby, and he loved her so much that he stayed to take care of her ever since. But at the beginning of the book, both of those people are yanked away, and Barrie discovers she has a family she never knew about on the other side of the country. She’s been so sheltered she doesn’t know how to read people, and she longs for connection so badly that she’s prone to making a lot of mistakes about whom to trust. Especially with regard to using the family gift for finding lost things, trusting the wrong people can be deadly.

Q. Where does the name Eight come from? Is that anything like Four?
A. Nope. Not at all. Family and tradition are big in the South, and that’s even more true on Watson Island where the family histories go back three hundred years and the gift is passed down to the oldest child. Eight is short for Charles Robert Beaufort, VIII. His father is Seven, Charles Robert Beaufort, VII. And obviously, that tradition goes back a few years. : ) Eight is tired of feeling more like a number than a person, so when we first meet him, he can’t wait to get away from Watson Island. That becomes a big problem once Barrie arrives, because it turns out she literally won’t be able to ever leave the island.
Q: What is your favorite thing about Eight?
A: Apart from the fact that he’s sexy, swoony, and sweet? It’s that he’s got a little edge of badass, but he’s intensely kind and treats Barrie well—he may call her out once in a while when she does something reckless, but he lets her make her own mistakes and supports her through them. I’m all about alpha males as long as the relationship is equal. Eight makes Barrie stronger and helps her see herself through his eyes, helping her to realize that she is more than she ever thought she could be.
Q: I've heard that readers, especially men, are fascinated by Cassie. Why?
A: Well, Cassie's kind of Scarlett O'Hara-ish, so I can see that. But I didn't realize just how intrigued men would be by the bad girl edge she has to her. I'm curious to see what people think after Book Two.
Q. What happens in PERSUASION, the second book of the trilogy?
A. I can't share that yet, but it's kind of epic. And heartbreaking. Really, really heartbreaking and also healing.
Q: Are any of the characters personalities based on you or on people you know?
A: I'd love to have known Eight when I was young enough to enjoy him, because yum. But also Mark because he's so fierce and so Mark. I'd love to have a best friend like Barrie and an aunt like Pru. In real life, I know people who might have a trait or two that could be similar, that might have sparked a thought, but ultimately, the characters became themselves as they spilled out onto the page. They are nothing like me or anyone I know. Except maybe for Mrs. Price—who is based on a lovely woman I met while on a research trip. She was so spunky and fun that I've never been able to forget her.
Q: Some of the characters in COMPULSION are a bit extreme. Do you feel like that's realistic?
A: I think that junior high and high school aren't very realistic. They can be horrible, terrible places where people do things to each other than I can't even imagine putting into a book. Schools are all about finding who you are, and that's what books are about. I feel like sometimes writers need to make things a little bigger in a book to give readers the chance to let themselves feel like what's happening is removed from them, even while it is speaking directly to them. I mean, are there going to be Hunger Games in the near future? Man, I hope not. But that doesn't make Katniss' feelings resonate with me any less.
Q: Is there really a Watson Island?
A: In some parallel universe, Watson Island is somewhere near Edisto Island, South Carolina. The plantations are loosely based on plantations I've visited, and I'll admit that Boone Plantation figured heavily into the mix. It's beautiful. If you haven’t been there, go visit when you get a chance.
Q. How would you describe Watson Island?
Watson Island is the sort of sleepy, close-knit, gossipy town that most people who have visited the South will recognize, with a bit of a difference. The town is well aware of the magic that surrounds the three founding families, and particularly the plantation at Watson’s Landing. They keep the secret. In that way, the book begins like magical realism, but the magic is part of the mystery that Barrie Watson has to uncover when she arrives.
The truly magical place is Watson’s Landing. There, the spirit of a Cherokee witch sets the river surrounding the property on fire each night at midnight in a ceremony he has performed for longer than anyone remembers in order to keep the land protected and to keep the yunwi, the mischievous and magical little people confined to the island. As Barrie comes to find out, she is bound to this land, both physically and spiritually, and
uncovering what that means and why the island exists is part of what I am having a blast exploring in the course of the trilogy.
The gifts (and the curse) that belong to the Watsons, Beauforts, and Colesworths, all tie into this magic, but not necessarily for the reasons the families think.

Q: What was one of your favorite scenes to write?
I have a lot of favorite scenes, but I love the first beach scene with the turtle nests and that first big jump in the romance between Eight and Barrie. That's followed closely by the fountain scene. And the sandbar scene where Barrie first gets a hint of her strength. And Mark. Any scene with Mark is my favorite. I have a few that I wish I could have put in the book. I may write them someday, just for fun.
Q: What was the hardest scene to write?
There are several scenes that made me cry—and I still teared up even when I was reviewing copyedits, despite having been through something like a hundred and forty seven drafts (okay, maybe not quite that many...). But yeah, there are a lot of emotional scenes that wrung me out and left me feeling like a strand of overcooked spaghetti. Hands down the hardest scene for me to write was the beginning, though, which is ironic because I founded and still mentor the First Five Pages Workshop, where I (along with some AMAZING authors) help aspiring writers nail the early part of their manuscript.
My problem with the beginning is that Barrie is literally broken at that point, but the reader doesn't know that. Even Barrie doesn't know it fully. It was so hard trying to find a way to show the reader a girl who would be interesting to read about, a girl who would become strong, while at the same time hinting at her brokenness—at the way that she perceives herself before she's found that she is worth loving. Barrie is like a lot of girls who don't recognize the strength and beauty within themselves.
Q. There's a lot of Southern Gothic fiction hitting the marketplace lately. What sets COMPULSION apart?
A. At its essence, the Southern Gothic fiction I really love is about haunted families and the kind of tradition that passes down from one generation to another whether the next generation wants it or not. It's about haunting settings, quirky characters, and dangerous situations, but it's also about epic love. COMPULSION is about all of that in equal measure, but it's also a coming of age story, a story about finding your place, your family, yourself. There are definitely weird, memorable characters. Someone I really
respect once described it as MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL meets ROMEO AND JULIET meets THE SIXTH SENSE. I hope that's kind of different.

Q: What appealed to you about creating a character who is compelled in the way Barrie is?
A: We're all, as human beings, locked up in some way. Figuring out how to free ourselves is a huge challenge, and I loved being able to explore that in a literal way that was metaphysical at the same time.
Q: Who was the hardest character to write?
A: Cassie. Hands down. She's so complicated and influenced by . . . secret, spoilerish things. But I know things that no one else, including Barrie, knows about her. Also we are all seeing Cassie through the filter of Barrie's point of view, so that makes her more elusive and hard to grasp. My original Book Two—the one I put aside when my publisher wanted a series instead of two companion books—was from Cassie's point of view. That was due to a request from beta readers (okay, male beta readers) who needed more Cassie. My original plan had been to write the companion book from the perspective of Cassie's sister Sydney, but hearing the reader responses, I changed my mind and changed the end of Book One to make it possible to keep Cassie around. Writing from her perspective, even for a little while, made me see her completely differently. But she's still a difficult character to bring to the page. I really want to do a novella from her POV at some point.
Q: Who or what was the inspiration for the villain in COMPULSION?
A: There are several "villains" and not all of them are obvious. But none of them really had an inspiration. Except the guy with the skull tattooed on the back of his head. That I know where it came from, but I can't say because . . . um . . . I can't say.

Drained by the aftereffects of anger and adrenaline, Barrie found herself breathing in Eight’s recklessness, swept up in it, and suddenly it didn’t matter where they were going or what he planned to do. His moods were contagious, dangerous to her equilibrium.
He stopped at the beach, the same beach where they’d seen the turtle nest.

Neither of them said a word while Eight retrieved a musty-smelling towel from his trunk and caught Barrie’s hand, lacing their fingers like they were made to fit.
They ran barefoot over the dunes and through a break in the pickets that held back the sea oats. The moon turned the white sand to diamond dust, and Eight laid the towel down above the hide-tide marker of shells and seaweed and damp, dark sand. He sat down and drew her against him, her back against his chest. His arms wrapped around her, and she leaned into the solidness of him. His heartbeat washed through her like the waves, until she didn’t know whether the pounding of it was hers or his.
When she sighed and relaxed, he eased her down and leaned over and finally kissed her until she felt like she was going to fall. She reached for him, kissing him more deeply. His lips were scalding on hers, leaving her tingling and whole instead of so, so alone. She wanted the feeling, the moment, to never stop. 

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