Sunday, May 1, 2011

Highlights of the May 1st Q&A with Jennifer Murgia author of Angel Star and Lemniscate in my Goodreads group

Angel StarLemniscate (The Angel Star Sequel) 
 Jennifer Murgia has been writing ever since she was nine years old. After receiving recognition for her poetry, she went on to use her talents to bring characters to life in fiction novels that are authentic, intriguing, and personal. She currently resides in Pennsylvania with her husband and two children. (Information gotten from Goodreads) Her current books are Angel Star and Lemniscate. You can find her Facebook and Twitter.

Her website is:

My Goodreads group, Nothing but Reading Challenges, hosted a Q&A with author Jennifer Murgia on May 1st. Jennifer said it would be okay for me to post some of the highlights of the interview on my blog, so here they are:
MeJennifer, Thanks so much for joining us today. I was hoping you could clear something up for us. I was on Amazon today and I noticed Leminscate was listed as having an age range of 9 - 12. That would be a tween book. As Angel Star is listed as Young Adult is it safe to assume they made an error with Lamniscate and it should be listed as a Young Adult book as well?

Jennifer: I noticed that rating on Amazon too when Angel Star was first listed - yes both books are Young Adult.

Me:  I've noticed a lot of books have been popping up this year with angel stories. Your first book, Angel Star, was one of the first of the trend. What inspired you to write an angel romance?

Jennifer:  I had no intentions of writing an angel themed story. The thought popped into my head one night and it stemmed from an unconditional love between a girl and a boy. I toyed with the idea if the one person to absolutely love you was somewhat forbidden and unseen yet constantly with you, what kind of future would that relationship have?
With vampires saturating the market the most appealing being to me was an angel:)

Me:  You use many geometric symbols in your books, the bicursal, unicursal, lemniscate, and unity symbols. I really like the idea. What inspired you to use them?

Jennifer: Personally, I LOVE books that hold plausiblity. I love a world built around an element that will make me ask - could it be true - and leave me Googling late into the night! I knew I wanted something special and unusual for Angel Star. Something ancient.
Some thing already real. My mother has a book of symbols and with my mythology for the Guardians already fleshed out, I found the octagram.
The unicursal octagram is actually a Wiccan symbol representing the Wheel of the Year. It stands for birth, death and rebirth - a constant cycle. It was a perfect fit for an angel who follows his charge from lifetime to lifetime. It was a total fluke finding the bicursal octagram which means separation and destruction.
Like my Guardian's names, they now had symbols and purpose!

Me: Do all Guardians have a star mark? Garrath's was unicursal while Hadrian's is bicursal. Can the mark change from one to the other?

Jennifer: To answer your ?, yes in the story all Guardians are marked with the star enabling them to follow their human charges throughout the eight incarnations. And yes, the mark may change as the the Guardian switches paths between good and evil.

Me:  In Angel Star Garreth says some things that got me wondering. He asked Teagan, "do you ever wonder if you've lived before." (Page 42) He also said, "The octogram allows me to follow you through eternity." (Page 65) Has Teagan lived before?

Jennifer: Yes she has, although she doesn't remember from one life to the next:)

Me:  You said Teagan was reincarnated. In the world you created is everyone reincarnated or is it just Teagan and anyone from her bloodline? You did make some references to Heaven in Angel Star and Hell in Lemniscate that had me wondering and each. It's stated that Heaven isn't a place, but your soul's sanctuary in Angel Star page 73 and in Lemniscate it seemed a little similar for hell, but not a sanctuary. 

Jennifer: I believe that anyone could be reincarnated, not just Teagan.

I also believe (and incorporated this into the storyline) that both Heaven and Hell could be a state of mind. Who knows, maybe they are actual places? But I firmly believe life is what you make it. If you surround yourself with happiness, you can create a personal Heaven. You can also create a world of darkness for yourself, in a sense, your own personal Hell.
I used the age-old belief that if you think of evil, you let it in. And fear can be very controlling. Combine the two, you have something very lethal that can run your life.

Me:  Any thoughts of doing a story of Teagan in a former life/different time? Either within another story or as a novella?

Jennifer: Actually I haven't! If I ventured down that road I think it would be a nice flashback in an installment told from Garreth's POV.

Me:  Did Teagan's father die? It seems to be assumed that he did because they keep saying he was destroyed, but I couldn't find a reference of him actually being dead. I was wondering if it just meant he was a little like Claire was before she died?

Jennifer: Good question! Sadly, her father is dead.
I like to leave unanswered questions in my stories because I like the reader to determine their own conclusions. Personally, I enjoy that in the books I read as well. What fun is it to have everything answered or spelled out? Does it make you still wonder long after you've finished? Not really, since it's already out there.
One of the main reasons I'd love to add a prequel to the series is to do a bit of backstorying... I'd love to tell about Lucifer's fall from grace, how it influenced Hadrian to turn dark and a bit about Teagan's dad.

Also, Jennifer stated:  As of now a third book is not contracted. That doesn't mean I don't have ideas for future books floating around my head (and you know I do!).
If anything I would love a prequel which I have tentatively named AWAKEN. I have a cover in mind but of course, this is not even written yet or under contract so it's very unofficial!

If you'd like to read more of the interview here is a link to the full Q&A:
For those of you who haven't read either Angel Star or Lemniscate here are their descriptions as found on Goodreads:

Angel Star - "Seventeen-year-old Teagan McNeel falls for captivating Garreth Adams and soon discovers that her crush has an eight-point star etched into the palm of his right hand-the mark of an angel. But where there is light, dark follows, and she and Garreth suddenly find themselves vulnerable to a dark angel's malicious plan that could threaten not only her life, but the lives of everyone she knows. Divinely woven together, Angel Star takes readers on a reflective journey when one angel's sacrifice collides with another angel's vicious ambition in a way that is sure to have readers searching for their own willpower."

Lemniscate (sequel to Angel Star) -" For Teagan, these last few months have been heaven on earth- especially now that Garreth, her boyfriend and guardian angel, is earthbound. But perhaps Garreth is becoming a little more human than either of them expected. Now, Teagan must realize that her world is once again about to shift, as she questions the faith she held in others against those once considered enemies. In this continuation of Angel Star, Lemniscate will draw you even deeper into the world of dark and light as Teagan realizes the angel who could possibly save them all is the one angel she feared the most."

P.S. Lemniscate was released March 21st and is now available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

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