Release Day Interview with P P Wong, Author of The Life Of A Banana

Today I’m joining in the celebrations as fellow Legend Press author, PP Wong, releases her debut novel entitled The Life Of A Banana. And she is joining us on the blog to tell us a little more about it!

Can you describe your new novel in one succinct but sensual sentence?

A British Chinese orphan faces racial bullying while dealing with her dysfunctional family as she questions what it means to be an ethnic minority in London.

 

Who is your favourite character and why?

I love the main character Xing Li. But I have a special fondness for her best friend Jay. I like his straight talking and self-assured way. There is an innocence and simplicity in the way he sees the world as black and white, rather than grey. I also love how, despite the difficulties he has faced as being mixed race (Jamaican and Chinese), he is still confident in who he is. He is the best friend I wish I had.

 

Which authors have been your main inspirations?

The authors that I admire are George Orwell, Kazuo Ishiguro and Dr Seuss.

I like the way that George Orwell writes about ills in society in the most entertaining and humorous manner. I enjoy both his fiction and non-fiction. He doesn’t waste words – every word for him is as precious as a nugget of gold.

Kazuo Ishiguro has the most amazing characters in his novels. For me, the characters of novels are the most important aspect of a novel. I like characters that feel real, have many layers to them and show little ticks or quirks that intrigue me.

As for Dr Seuss, well, I like his crazy imagination and sense of fun. Also, I love how he wrote to his own drum beat and no one else’s. When I visited New York I was really excited when I got to see THE hat of the cat. It looked exactly like the stripy red and white hat that I admired as a child. Apparently, Dr Seus had a secret stash of hidden hats that were only discovered after he died. What a fascinating man!

 

 

How does your writing process work; confusion and paper flying everywhere or calm and ordered?

I take a long time to get my thoughts down onto paper. Perhaps, it is the finality of typing out the words that scares me – as though once they are on the computer there is no turning back. Usually I spend months thinking and imagining the plot and characters. Sometimes I write quick notes of my observations of the world or quirks that I think my characters should have. Then when I am finally ready, I will write out a chapter plan. I try and stick to the chapter plan but it always gets changed as the story evolves.

 

What is your guilty pleasure when writing? (Chocolate, wine, coffee…)

My favourite guilty pleasure is probably BBQ flavoured Pringles. I’ve been known to finish a whole tube in one sitting. I won’t say no to the prawn cocktail and salt and vinegar ones too.

 

My Blurb:

Xing Li is what some Chinese people call a banana – yellow on the outside and white on the inside. Although born and raised in London, she never feels like she fits in. When her mother dies, she moves with her older brother to live with venomous Grandma, strange Uncle Ho and Hollywood actress Auntie Mei. Her only friend is Jay – a mixed raced Jamaican boy with a passion for classical music.

Then Xing Li’s life takes an even harsher turn: the school bullying escalates and her uncle requests she assist him in an unthinkable favour. Her happy childhood becomes a distant memory as her new life is infiltrated with the harsh reality of being an ethnic minority.

Consumed by secrets, violence and confusing family relations, Xing Li tries to find hope wherever she can. In order to find her own identity, she must first discover what it means to be both Chinese and British.

 

Sounds fascinating! I look forward to reading this one. Thanks so much for finding time in your busy schedule to share with us.

You can reach PP Wong here:

Website: www.ppwongauthor.com

Events coming up: I would love to meet people at my events.

http://www.ppwongauthor.com/#!events/crn0

Twitter: @ppwong_

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ppwongauthor

Her book is available NOW from Amazon UK and all good bookstores!

Guest Post: Meet Dave Sivers, Author of Dead in Deep Water

I’m delighted to be joined today by fellow author, Dave Sivers. I really enjoyed Dave’s first crime thriller, Scars Beneath the Soul, which introduced the detective partnership of Archer and Baines. He recently released the second in the series, Dead in Deep Water, and dropped by today to tell us a little more about his work and influences.

Can you describe your new novel in one succinct but sensual sentence?

Murder may be easy, but it is never simple. Continue reading

Eva’s Scotland

The work of the famous Scottish novelist, poet and playwright, Sir Walter Scott, first turned The Trossachs into a tourist destination in the nineteenth century, so it seemed very fitting to use it as a refuge for the frightened Eva in The Truth Will Out.

During our visit to Scotland earlier this year we stayed close to Eva’s first hideout in Kinlochard. It felt strangely nostalgic navigating the winding country lanes around Loch Ard and visiting the very real village of Kinlochard having shared the beautiful landscape in my second book, but I was pleased (and slightly relieved) to find it looking much as I remembered it.

Here is a little snippet of Eva’s Scotland in pictures:

 

This is Aberfoyle, Eva’s first landing place where she filled up with petrol and stocked up with groceries before heading off into the heart of the Highlands. Continue reading

A Fleeting Trip to Icelandic Waters by Lorelai MacLeod

I’m still indulging the holiday spirit and today I’m delighted to say that we are treated to another post from the talented, Lorelai MacLeod, who this time shares her recent Icelandic jaunt with us. Over to you, Lorelai:

Thank you so much Jane for inviting me back to your lovely blog. I do hope you like the photos.

I mentioned Icelandic waters rather than Iceland, not because we travelled by boat, though we did, but because water seems to be the main place I aim the camera – that and at my husband imitating statues.

Talking of which; Reykjavik’s striking Hallgrímskirkja church, of which many pictures can be found online (I do have one, but it’s far too daft), is visible from much of the city. This is my husband outside said Lutheran establishment, trying his best to embody the spirit of Norse explorer Leifur Eiriksson.

 

Travelling in June, the sun never set, so the rugged landscape could be admired all hours of the day. Iceland in summer is gorgeously green and an abundance of wild grasses and herbs make Icelandic lamb some of the best in the world. Continue reading