by Jennifer Anne Davis
Published by Lands Atlantic Publishing (1/29/13)
I won this book (ebook version)
The summer before her senior year of high school, Audrey is snatched out of her home. She survives the humiliation, the psychological torture, and the rape with the help of a voice in her head. Guardian angel? Madness? Or the only soul to reach inside and keep her from floating away? The hell Audrey endured carries over to her new life, the one defined by pitying looks, overcrowding loved ones, and an inability to be touched. In a desperate move, her family sends her to live with her aunt in California. Now that she can be someone else, can she take control of her constant nightmares? Will she move past her observer role and act on her new and growing feelings for the boy next door? How will her affection for the voice in her head, the one who saved her, fit into reality? And finally, with the trial of her kidnapper and rapist looming, will she survive long enough to testify?
From page one, I was hooked. Audrey pulled me into her world of pain so thoroughly, I had to follow her to the other side. I needed to be there every step of her journey back to herself. And I'm glad for it because I met her awesome aunt, a high school teacher and a woman with a heart full of hurt. I fell in love with the twins next door, friendly Caleb and anti-social Justin. We only really meet one of her brothers, but he offered a glimpse into the life Audrey had before everything changed. Jennifer Anne Davis doesn't shy away from the terrible subject matter surrounding her main character. She gives evil a face, a name, and a smell. She makes him real, which makes what he did real. First time readers are lucky because they get to be hit with page one and feel the amazing pull of a compelling read.
I recently discovered how much I enjoy interviewing authors. I emailed Jennifer Anne Davis and asked her if she'd like to do a mini-interview with me. You know her answer. Yay!
I read in your bio that you started out with an essay, “Caution: Warning Label Not Included” in the anthology Manual for Motherhood. What motivated you to make the leap into YA fiction?
I love to read YA. I’m not sure when I first started writing, why I didn’t write YA. But after my contemporary adult manuscript was rejected numerous times by agents and publishers, I decided to write the type of book I wanted to read instead. I taught high school English and tutored teens for years, so making the transition was rather easy. Writing YA came naturally to me. And that’s how The Voice came to be!!
Was there a moment for you when you decided you had to do this, you had to be a writer and not just to create stories for your own enjoyment?
Yes!!! After the birth of my second child, I had this story stuck in my head. I swear I dreamed about these characters for over a year. I decided I had to write their story. I did, and the experience really taught me the act of writing more than anything. I tabled the manuscript and wrote something else that I thought would be more marketable. One day I hope to go back to that original story—the characters still haunt me sometimes so I think the story needs to be published. We’ll see!
What's a typical day for you?
Once I take my three kids to school, I come home and sit in my writing room and work. I write or edit all morning! Then I pick the kiddos up and do homework with them. After they’re all in bed, I spend the evening reading.
Will you venture back into tales of motherhood in your writing, or have you found a home in YA fiction?
I have found my home in YA fiction. I am currently working on a three book series. The first book is slated for release in the spring of 2014. While it’s still YA, it is a fantasy series. I like being able to write different genres, but staying in the YA sphere. I love creating and writing characters that are discovering themselves and learning to find their place in the world. It’s satisfying and fulfilling. I can’t imagine doing anything else.
I noticed your family included a wide range of pets, including a gecko...hmm. Is there a pet you absolutely vetoed, that your kids begged for, but you put your foot down?
YES. My kids, especially my five-year-old daughter, really want a snake. There is no way at all that a snake will enter my house. Period. The thought freaks me out. I swear, if my husband caves on this one, I will simply die. I can’t handle the THOUGHT of a snake in the house somewhere. Not that I’m particularly keen on the gecko or frogs, but at least they’re small and they stay in my son’s room.
You can learn more about The Voice and Jennifer Anne Davis HERE.