Q & A with Katherine Longshore: GILT

Gilt_CATToday I welcome Katherine Longshore to World Reads, a blog that features interviews with authors who’ve written a story set outside of the United States for children or young adults.

What is the title of your book? The pub date and publisher? Genre? Targeted age group?

*GILT, May 2012, Viking/Penguin, historical fiction, ages 12+

Where is it set?

*Tudor England

In 70 words or less, provide a succinct plot description of your story.

* When Kitty Tylney’s best friend, Catherine Howard, worms her way into King Henry VIII’s heart and brings Kitty to court, she’s thrust into a world filled with fabulous gowns, sparkling jewels, and elegant parties. As Kitty witnesses Cat’s meteoric rise and fall as queen, she must figure out how to keep being a good friend when the price of telling the truth could literally be her head.

Links to reviews or blurbs

How are you connected to the setting of your story?

*I lived in England for five years—it’s where I fell in love with history!

What inspired you to write this story?

*It started off as an interest in Catherine Howard—a teenage girl marrying a fifty-year-old man.  But Kitty was inspired by a modern-day event in which a group of students witnessed a shocking violation of law and humanity and yet didn’t report it.  I wanted to write the story of a girl who could say nothing, and learn how wrong that was.

What was the biggest challenge you had writing your story? How did you overcome it?

*Perfectionism.  Because this was my first published novel, I had trouble letting it go.  A friend told me, “You can’t go into every bookstore in America with a Sharpie, and they kind of frown on that, anyway.”  Ultimately, I had to accept that, though I still sometimes change words and phrasing when I do readings.

What kind of story can we expect next from you? Is it set outside of the United States? If so, where? And what is it about?

*My historical loves are almost entirely English—though they cover a broad expanse of time.

Longshore_Katy_1589_CL_57_WCan you remember the first book that made an impact on you? And why?

*The Cat in the Hat.  At five years old, I decided that I was never going to learn to read, because it had made my sister boring—she never played with me.  But I got The Cat in the Hat out of the library, and sat down with it and got sucked in.  So much so, that I decided to read it again, even after my best friend arrived for a playdate.  So I guess reading made me boring, too!

For more information check out Katherine’s web page and her blog. You can also follow Katherine on Facebook or Twitter

 Thank you Katherine for joining World Reads!


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