Thursday, October 10, 2013

No Angel by Helen Keeble: Interview and Book Blitz


Describe your new book No Angel in a single Tweet.

Boy thinks life at an all-girls school will be heavenly, but it's hell on earth. And he's the angel sent to fix things. Help!

Do we need to have read your first novel, Fang Girl, to enjoy No Angel?

Nope, they’re entirely unrelated to each other. Well, apart from containing the same brand of humor!

Even though No Angel isn’t a sequel to Fang Girl, I hope that readers who enjoyed the way I affectionately mocked vampires in my first book will get the same sorts of giggles from the way my new one makes fun of the whole ‘angel boyfriend’ subgenre of paranormal romance.

Is No Angel a stand-alone novel or the start of a series?

It’s definitely a stand-alone novel. Not to give away any spoilers, but the plot is very much wrapped up at the end of the book.

Why did you decide to set No Angel at a boarding school?

My dad went to various VERY traditional English boys’ boarding schools from the age of seven to eighteen, and although he doesn’t talk much about it, he’s told me a few horror stories. I’m fascinated by old-fashioned boarding schools as these little self-contained worlds, with their own history and culture, completely isolated from normal life. Due to Harry Potter, I think most of us now have a pretty romantic idea of boarding schools as a magical wonderland, but they could just as easily be (and often were) utter hell-holes. Bullying is bad enough, but when you can’t even get away from your tormentors at the end of the school day…? Scary!

Your vampires in Fang Girl have some unusual (for the paranormal genre) traits based on traditional Eastern European folklore. Have you done anything similar with the angels and demons in No Angel?

Definitely! I had a lot of fun researching angels in early Christian traditions. I took a lot of inspiration from De coelesti hierarchy, a 5th Century text on angels that is  utterly cracktastic to modern eyes. Let's put it this way: When you think "angel", do you think:

                     a. A noble, handsome/beautiful protector with big white wings, glowing with pure, holy goodness

                     b. Two massive bicycle wheels jammed crossways into each other, set on fire, and COVERED IN EYES

… Yeah.

Let’s just say that Rafael Angelos, the hero of No Angel, is not exactly happy about his newly discovered angelic tendencies…

Fun fact about No Angel?

I guarantee it’s the only light, fluffy YA comedy you’ll ever read that includes higher-dimensional mathematics as a pivotal plot-point.

(Don’t worry, there are no equations)

Would you rather be an angel or a vampire?

Definitely an angel! I’ve always wanted to fly. I, uh, may have spent an entire year hooked on a computer game called Aion just because it let me play a character with beautiful big wings. *blush*

Although I have to say I would prefer to be an angel from someone else’s book, not my own. The angels in No Angel are… not exactly eye-candy.

What are your favorite books, shows, or movies about angels and demons?

For books, Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. I’m also very fond of The Demon’s Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan.

Favorite funny movie or TV show?

Galaxy Quest, which is a movie about a group of actors from a second-rate, long-cancelled TV science-fiction series (which is of course in NO WAY based on a real TV show *cough* Star Trek *cough*) who get abducted by real aliens, who have based their entire culture on the show. Or, as the aliens call it, “the historical documents”, as they believe it’s all real. Hijinks ensue!

If you are at all aware of science fiction fan culture, Galaxy Quest is screamingly funny. The fact that I went to Star Trek conventions as a teenager, owned a lovingly-painted collection of Enterprise models, and once won a Halloween costume competition with my home-made Spock outfit, may go some way to explaining my deep and abiding love for this movie. 

(no, you can’t see pictures of me in my Spock costume)
No Angel by Helen Keeble
Published by: HarperTeen
Publication date: October 8th 2013
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult
Rafael Angelos just got handed the greatest gift any teenage boy could ever dream of. Upon arriving at his new boarding school for senior year, he discovered that he is the ONLY male student. But what should have been a godsend isn’t exactly heaven on Earth.

Raffi’s about to learn that St. Mary’s is actually a hub for demons-and that he was summoned to the school by someone expecting him to save the day. Raffi knows he’s no angel-but it’s pretty hard to deny that there’s some higher plan at work when he wakes up one morning to discover a glowing circle around his head.

Helen Keeble’s debut novel, Fang Girl, has been praised for its pitch-perfect teen voice, and VOYA called it “refreshing and reminiscent of Louise Rennison’s Confessions of Georgia Nicolson series.” No Angel brings you angels and demons like you’ve never seen them-complete with the wry humor of Vladimir Tod, sinfully irreverent romance, and some hilariously demonic teenage dilemmas.
Amazon |  B&N 
Helen Keeble is not, and never has been, a vampire. She has however been a teenager. She grew up partly in America and partly in England, which has left her with an unidentifiable accent and a fondness for peanut butter crackers washed down with a nice cup of tea. She now lives in West Sussex, England, with her husband, daughter, two cats, and a variable number of fish. To the best of her knowledge, none of the fish are undead.

Her first novel, a YA vampire comedy called FANG GIRL, is out 11th Sept 2012, from HarperTeen. She also has another YA paranormal comedy novel (provisionally titled NO ANGEL) scheduled for Sept 2013.
Author Links:
Grand prize giveaway
Prize (open internationally):
a  signed copy of No Angel


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