Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Interview with Maya Banks (ONE OF MY ALL-TIME FAVORITE AUTHORS OMG), with Taking It All from the Surrender Trilogy + Giveaway! (US only)

I'd like to welcome one of my all-time favorite romance authors, Maya Banks to the blog today to celebrate the release of the conclusion to her Surrender Trilogy, Taking It All. Stick around until the end for a fabulous giveaway that you don't want to miss!

Welcome to Books à la Mode, Maya! I am beyond excited to have you at Books à la Mode today—I am such a huge fan of your Breathless and KGI novels, so it's a dream come true to have you over! SORRY IN ADVANCE IF THERE'S ANY RANDOM FANGIRLING (#NOTSORRY). Let's get this interview started.

Will you please share a brief introduction with us?

Maya Banks is the USA Today and New York Times bestselling author of the Breathless Trilogy, the KGI novels, and the Sweet series. Her chart toppers have included erotic romance, romantic suspense, contemporary romance and Scottish historical romance.

She lives in the South with her husband and three children and other assorted babies, such as her two Bengal kitties and a calico who’s been with her as long as her youngest child. She’s an avid reader of romance and loves to dish books with her fans and anyone else who’ll listen! She very much enjoys interacting with her readers on Facebook and Twitter, as well as in her Yahoo! Group and on her webiste.

Readers, here's a bit about the book, which came out last week:

In her sensational Breathless Trilogy, New York Times-bestselling author Maya Banks tested the boundaries of desire. In her new trilogy, there’s only one thing left to do: cross them. And for a married couple taking steps to renew their marriage, the consequences of one single moment of inattention may come at a price the husband never expects…

Chessy and Tate have been married for several years. In the beginning, their relationship was everything she wanted. Passionate. All-consuming. She offered her submission freely and Tate cherished her gift with a tenderness that made her feel safe. Content. Wanted. Loved beyond all measure. But as the years have gone by, Tate has become more immersed in making his business a success, and Chessy has taken a back seat to his business obligations. Growing unhappy with the status of their once blissful marriage, Chessy knows that something has to give, or they stand to lose it all.

Tate loves his wife. Has always loved her. Providing for her has always been his number-one priority. But lately she’s seemed unhappy, and he’s worried. Worried enough that he arranges for a night together that he hopes will reignite the fire that once burned like an inferno between them.

But a business call at the wrong time threatens everything. Chessy’s safety, his concentration, his wife’s faith in him as her husband—a man sworn to love and protect her above all else. Gutted with the realization that he’s going to lose her—has already lost her—he readies for the fight of his life. Whatever it takes, he’ll get her back, show her that nothing is more important than her love. And that if she’ll allow him to prove himself one more time, he’ll take it all. Everything. But he’ll give back far more: Himself. His undying love.
Buy the book from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository | Books-A-Million | iTunes | Kobo | Google Play | Publisher

Describe the Taking It All in six words.

Emotional, angsty, heartbreaking, epic-groveling, romantic & happy-sigh :)

What was the inspiration for the book?

I love looking beyond the HEA and the first brush of love when a relationship is all shiny and new. I adore marriage-in-jeopardy stories because the stakes are so much higher when you have two people already heavily invested in each other.

Have you ever had the compulsion to write anything other than romance?

Nope never. I’ve always wanted to write romance. I’ve never written anything else nor, at this time, do I have any desire NOT to write romance.

Tell us about your road to publication.

It took 4 years of rejection, dejection, and nearly throwing the towel completely in before I finally became published.

And look where that perseverance got you today! Are the characters from your books based off anyone you know in real life? How much else of your actual life gets written into your stories?

I don’t base my characters on real people or actors, etc. They are absolutely created from scratch in my head.

Which character from Taking It Al was most difficult to write?

Definitely Chessy.

What do you consider your biggest strengths and weaknesses as an author?

I’m a good storyteller—not a good WRITER but a good storyteller. Huge difference between the two.

What’s the greatest thing you ever learned?

That only I have the power to succeed or fail. No one can do either for me.

That's so true! Blog babes, click "Read more" to find out Maya's random favorites, her best personal advice, and the message she wants people to grasp from the novel. We're also hosting a giveaway for a finished copy, so you don't want to miss that either!

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Some randomness...

Favorite kind of chocolate? Dark, milk, white, coffee-flavored, the kind with nuts or berries inside?? Not a fan of chocolate. Now caramel? Mmmm.

What kind of kid were you in high school?  I was athletic and all the guys' BFF. I was that girl who all the guys came to with their “girl” trouble.

All-time favorite quote? Since I just had it tattooed, I’d have to say Dreamers never die. I firmly believe it!

Most romantic thing a guy has ever done to you? When my husband calls me “baby." You have to understand, he does not do this often, so when he does, I just melt :)

How do you get over heartbreak?  I wish I knew! I suck at it.

Currently reading? Rereading some Kresley Cole favorites.

Currently wearing? Pajamas.

Most visited websites? Gmail, Facebook, and Twitter.

Standard fare! Favorite vegetable? (Yes, you have to pick one!) No, I don’t actually lol. I don’t eat them and I REFUSE to eat anything GREEN. Period.

LOL! Biggest celebrity crush? The Rock.

Mmmm! Guiltiest pleasure? I refuse to feel guilt for anything I find pleasurable.

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Out of all the fantastic books out there, what makes Taking It All stand out from the rest?

I mentioned my love for marriage-in-jeopardy stories and there just aren’t a whole lot of them out there. Most romances focuses on how a couple MEETS and then they live HEA. But we all know that you have to keep FIGHTING for an HEA no matter how “wonderful” a person or relationship is.

So on-point! Give us your best personal advice—something you wish you had known when you were younger and would offer to your own kids.

Just be patient in all things.

What are you involved in when you aren’t writing?

My family. We love to travel and we like sports and the outdoors.

What would you say are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer?

Patience. Definitely patience.

Are there any occupational hazards to being a writer?

Long hours and sleepless nights.

Sounds like the student life! LOL! What’s the most interesting comment you have ever received about your books?

If we stay on the nice interesting comment side,lol, I’ve actually gotten a lot of emails from women who said they never read before picking up one of my books and now they’re voracious readers. That’s pretty cool.

Authors who can make non-readers love reading are absolute geniuses, in my opinion! What is the message in Taking It All that you want readers to grasp?

That love isn’t perfect or automatic. It takes constant, vigilante work.

What are your goals as a writer?

I’ve already accomplished every goal I ever made for myself so my only goal is to make each book the absolute best it can be so I can continue doing something I love.

That's good enough! What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?

I’ve definitely gotten to travel more.

What’s next for you?

I have a new series beginning in October kicking off with Keep Me Safe followed by In His Keeping in January 2015 and then Safe At Last in March 2015. I will also have a brand new trilogy that will begin in mid 2015 with two of the three books publishing in 2015 and the third in early 2016.

Wow! You've got an exciting, fulfilling future full of books ahead of you. I can't wait! Where can you be found on the web?

Before we conclude this interview, is there anything you'd like to ask our readers?

What's your favorite theme or trope in romance?

It was amazing to get to interview you today, Maya! Thank you again for dropping by, and thank you for bringing so much to the world or romantic suspense and erotic romance!!!


Books à la Mode is giving away a print copy of Taking It All—woohoo! To enter, all you have to do is answer Maya's question:
What's your favorite theme or trope in romance?
Please make your comment MEANINGFUL. Comments solely consisting of stock responses or irrelevant fluff like "Thanks for the giveaway!" will not be considered for entry. Maya and I really want to hear your thoughts! :)

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the publicist—a huge thank you to Sullivan & Partners!
Giveaway ends August 26th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US residents only. Sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar on the right for a list of currently running giveaways that are open worldwide—there are plenty to choose from!
Void where prohibited.
Winners have 48 hours to claim their prize once they are chosen, or else their winnings will be forfeited.
Although I do randomly select winners, I am in no way responsible for prizes, nor for shipping and handling.
As a reminder, you do not have to follow my blog to enter, though it is always very much appreciated ❤
Good luck!