Summer of Series: Dahlia Adler Interview & Giveaway

Dahlia Adler is a great author friend of mine that I first met at a diner. I feasted on mac'n'cheese and she was all over the margaritas. I'm so excited to have her on the blog today!

Under the Lights
second in The Daylight Falls series
To be published June 30, 2015 by Spencer Hill Contemporary
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Josh Chester loves being a Hollywood bad boy, coasting on his good looks, his parties, his parents' wealth, and the occasional modeling gig. But his laid-back lifestyle is about to change. To help out his best friend, Liam, he joins his hit teen TV show, Daylight Falls...opposite Vanessa Park, the one actor immune to his charms. (Not that he's trying to charm her, of course.) Meanwhile, his drama-queen mother blackmails him into a new family reality TV show, with Josh in the starring role. Now that he's in the spotlight—on everyone's terms but his own—Josh has to decide whether a life as a superstar is the one he really wants.

Vanessa Park has always been certain about her path as an actor, despite her parents' disapproval. But with all her relationships currently in upheaval, she's painfully uncertain about everything else. When she meets her new career handler, Brianna, Van is relieved to have found someone she can rely on, now that her BFF, Ally, is at college across the country. But as feelings unexpectedly evolve beyond friendship, Van's life reaches a whole new level of confusing. And she'll have to choose between the one thing she's always loved...and the person she never imagined she could.

Describe Daylight Falls in a tweet. 140 characters or less. No cheating or the Twitter gods are going to get you!
Daylight Falls explores what it takes to forge something real and find yourself when you've grown up in an industry built on make-believe.
(Please, like I'd ever risk the wrath of the Twitter gods)

What has been your favorite part of writing Daylight Falls?
Hands-down writing the romance between Vanessa and Brianna. I still can't get over how naturally it came together after struggling so much to write a romance for Van before I realized she was gay, and honestly, I love that in the end, she really took over the book, and Josh served her story rather than the other way around.

Did you always plan for Daylight Falls to be a series? How did it take shape in your mind?
Nope! I wrote Behind the Scenes as a standalone, but my very early readers loved Josh best out of everything in the book, and I made a joke to my editor about writing a Josh sequel. She asked me to write a real one, and that's how Under the Lights happened! So it's funny to me when people ask WTF Josh is doing there, because it was actually his book, and Van's the one who stole it. Originally it was a romance between Josh and this very "good," type A girl with a really dark past, but that so tremendously did not work. Van's POV was added because I didn't want Josh's to be alone - I thought his voice was way too strong in too specific a way to be an entire book - and my editor said that in-house, people were really interested in more Van. I was super nervous at that because I really didn't feel like I knew her, but it turns out, that's because she didn't know herself yet. She really came out both to me and to herself during the process, and once that happened, this book was alllll hers, and her friendship with Ally, the whole "first love" thing, and the ongoing conversation about race in Hollywood is what really ties the books together for me.

Book two, Under the Lights, is coming out at the end of June. What can you tell us about it?
I describe it as 50% YA Entourage, 50% f/f romance, and 100% about race, gender, and sexuality in Hollywood. It's a dual-POV with one half narrated by Josh Chester, a spoiled, straight white boy who literally has opportunities thrown into his lap from scene 1, does whatever the hell he wants, and always has the possibility of a plan B, and Vanessa Park, a Korean-American girl who's working her butt off as the lead on her TV show but is perpetually in fear that it's the last shot she'll ever get because it was pretty much a miracle she got it in the first place. Things get extra complicated for her when she falls for her publicist's intern, Brianna, because she has to decide whether finally having a genuine romance in her life is worth the added risk to her career and her relationship with her parents, both of which are decidedly tenuous. And for Josh, he's trying to figure out what place he really has in Hollywood when everyone else seems to be moving forward and finding a passion, and the only passion he's finding is...for a girl it turns out likes other girls.

What is the most interesting thing you have Googled in the name of research?
I fell into so many "research" rabbit holes when I was crafting Bri for Under the Lights, because I couldn't quite decide on her look for a while; I only knew she'd have cool hair and be into body modification. So I spent a lot of time looking at various tattoos and piercings and learning about so many options and styles I didn't even know existed. Like, you can get rows of piercings down your back and corset laces tattoos around them. I was just in awe. I ended up going fairly basic for her but in my mind, as soon as she makes a little more money, she's going all in for a bunch of this stuff.

What is one series you would recommend to readers?
The Ruby Oliver series by E. Lockhart. It's my favorite contemporary series, and I think it's just so smart - about girls, about relationships, about shaming, about therapy, about confidence... to me it's a contemporary must-read, and it's only four short books!

Thor, Iron Man, or Captain America? GO!
Ummm okay, confession, I have not read any of their comics or seen any of their movies. Thor is Chris Hemsworth though, right? So, Thor it is!
Side note from Lili: This friendship is being seriously tested right now, Dahlia!
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Meet the author!

I'm an Associate Editor of mathematics by day, a Copy Editor by night, and I do a whole lot of writing at every spare moment in between. I've also been a Production Intern and Editorial Assistant at Simon & Schuster, a Publicity Intern at HarperCollins, and a Fashion Intern at Maxim. (I'm kind of into that whole publishing thing.)
I'm the author of the Daylight Falls duology (consisting of Behind the Scenes and Under the Lights), the upcoming Just Visiting, and the NA novel Last Will and Testament. For information on those books and where you can buy them, check out My Books!
I live in New York City with my husband and our overstuffed bookshelves, and you can find me on Twitter at @MissDahlELama and blogging at B&N Teens, The Daily Dahlia, and YA Misfits. Come say hi!
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Giveaway!

Dahlia is the sweetest! She is giving away a signed redesigned cover of Behind the Scenes.

All entrants must be 13 years or older and this giveaway is to the US only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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It is not too late to join the fun as we celebrate our favorite series and welcome new ones! Sign up for Summer of Series and knock down that TBR! 

And, of course, be sure to stop by Danielle's blog! You will find yourself captivated by Brighton Walsh!

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