Friday, November 14, 2014

"The Book of Ivy" by Amy Engel

The Book of Ivy
(The Book of Ivy Book 1)
by Amy Engel

The Book of Ivy is currently on tour with YA Bound Book Tours. The tour stops here today for a guest post by the author and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.

What would you kill for?
After a brutal nuclear war, the United States was left decimated. A small group of survivors eventually banded together, but only after more conflict over which family would govern the new nation. The Westfalls lost. Fifty years later, peace and control are maintained by marrying the daughters of the losing side to the sons of the winning group in a yearly ritual.
This year, it is my turn.
My name is Ivy Westfall, and my mission is simple: to kill the president’s son - my soon-to-be husband - and restore the Westfall family to power.
But Bishop Lattimer is either a very skilled actor or he’s not the cruel, heartless boy my family warned me to expect. He might even be the one person in this world who truly understands me. But there is no escape from my fate. I am the only one who can restore the Westfall legacy.
Because Bishop must die. And I must be the one to kill him …

Book Video

Praise for the Book
"Thought-provoking, poignant, and sexy! Readers will burn the midnight oil to finish The Book of Ivy and fall asleep with the name Bishop Lattimer on their lips." ~ Regina at Mel, Erin, and Regina Read-A-Lot
"The Book of Ivy has every ingredient you look for in an epic novel: from the spine-tingling plot and exhilarating characters, to every entrancing word penned by Amy Engel." ~ Kris at Insightful Minds Reviews
"I enjoyed this novel so much that I polished it off in two sittings. There is no insta-love! There is no love triangle! Best of all, the protagonist actually has common sense, and she uses it! The slow-to-develop relationship is believable, and both Ivy and Bishop are easy to relate to. Waiting anxiously for Book 2!" ~ Julie at Magna Maniac Café
"With her debut, Amy Engel has pulled off one of the best dystopian romances that I have ever read. It was impossible to put down." ~ Kayla at Bibliophilia, Please

Guest Post by the Author
Constructing an Antagonist
I love the use of the "big bad" in dystopian novels. It’s one of the hallmarks of the genre. But when I began writing The Book of Ivy, no true big bad emerged. Instead, there were a number of characters with conflicting motivations and both good and bad sides to their personalities. Instead of characters falling into black and white categories, I had a bunch of people painted with shades of gray.
Maybe it’s my years working as a criminal defense attorney at play, but I have a hard time writing characters who are purely evil. Don’t get me wrong, I love reading about them. But I struggle to write them. As an attorney, I worked with people accused of horrible crimes, but not all of them were horrible people. It’s that type of dichotomy that I wanted to bring to Ivy, the struggle to determine what’s right and what’s wrong and the idea that good people can sometimes do bad things and vice versa.
Ivy is a love story at its heart, but I hope it also makes readers think about the choices Ivy is forced to make and the difficulties she faces in a world where there are no simple, black and white answers.

About the Author
Amy Engel was born in Kansas and after a childhood spent bouncing between countries (Iran, Taiwan) and states (Kansas; California; Missouri; Washington, D.C.), she settled in Kansas City, Missouri, where she lives with her husband and two kids. Before devoting herself full-time to motherhood and writing, she was a criminal defense attorney, which is not quite as exciting as it looks on TV. When she has a free moment, she can usually be found reading, running, or shoe shopping. The Book of Ivy is her debut YA novel.

Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win some great prizes (US only).