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A Happy Book Birthday to In the Hope of Memories
Have a chat with the author, check out the book and enter the giveaway!

Author Interview

Can you tell us a little about your new book? 
Absolutely! “In the Hope of Memories” is the story of Hope, a young, eccentric graffiti artist who’s stuck in the foster system. When Hope gets diagnosed with a terminal heart condition, she realizes that her four best friends are on the brink of ruining their lives, and that they might not be okay once she’s dead and not there to support them anymore. So she creates an elaborate scavenger hunt using her graffiti art that’s meant to “fix” her friends so she can die in peace and know they’ll be alright without her. 

Do you have a favorite character? 
Asking authors this question is like asking a parent who their favorite child is. So my answer is Aiden, because I am terrible enough to actually pick favorites. Aiden is intensely logical, loyal, and moral. He’s a total sweetheart, and I see him as being everything that’s right with the world. But since he has OCD and an autism spectrum disorder, the world sees him as being “wrong,” just because no one else understands him. As an author, writing Aiden’s character was both a heart-warming and gut-wrenching experience, and he’ll always be a favorite of mine. 

What genre is “In the Hope of Memories?” 
That’s a very good question, and everyone from my agent to my author friends can’t quite figure out the answer. However, I think I like my critique partner’s description best: “It’s like if a Colleen Hoover book had a baby with The Breakfast Club, and that baby was given a huge dose of shitty luck and LSD.” 

Do you plot out your story before you write it? 
No, I find it impossible to plot my stories before I start writing. I always have a vague idea of the beginning, and I usually know what the ending lines will be. But how my characters will get from the beginning to the end is always a mystery I unravel in the first draft. 

Where did you get the idea for “In the Hope of Memories?” 
My inspiration for the book came from a quirky mix of sources, which is probably why the book turned out pretty quirky itself. I’d been listening to a rap song by the Gym Class Heroes called “Stereo Hearts,” and while listening to this, I was also reading about Erwin Schrodinger’s satirical thought experiment critiquing the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics. This led to two major epiphanies: The first was that I am a total geek, which really wasn’t all that interesting of an epiphany, since I have it at least ten times a week. The second epiphany was that I desperately needed to write about a young graffiti artist who is both dead and alive at once, just like the subject of Schrodinger’s thought experiment. And so the concept for “In the Hope of Memories” was born. 

What was the hardest part of writing “In the Hope of Memories?” 
My novel has four points of view, which isn’t very common in Young Adult books. Working with four very different main characters meant establishing four distinct voices, and that was quite challenging. However, the clashing personalities of the characters was also what made writing “In the Hope of Memories” such an enjoyable project! 

What does your writing process look like? 
My process changes with every book, but I generally write very long first drafts and then cut and revise from there. But no matter how I approach writing a book, I always need chocolate and music as fuel. No exceptions there! 

Are any of the characters from “In the Hope of Memories” based off yourself? 
Nope, definitely not! I’m a very reserved person, so the thought of sticking myself in a book for all the world to see is… horrifying. That being said, my characters ended up with a few of my own quirks. I can’t tell the difference between right and left, just like my character Erik, and this causes all sorts of shenanigans when someone has to give me driving directions. And like my character Sam, I also enjoy wearing The Flash t-shirts when I use my wheelchair, because irony really is the best medicine. Also, my laptop named Vladimir makes a cameo appearance in “In the Hope of Memories.” (R.I.P. Vladimir.) But, aside from tiny quirks like that, none of the characters or events in the book are based on my real life. 

Is “In the Hope of Memories” part of a series? 
No, this story is a standalone and won’t be continued in other books. 

Is “In the Hope of Memories” connected to any of your other books? 
Yes, in some ways, it definitely is! While the plots don’t directly intertwine, if readers look carefully, they’ll find references to my other books within the pages of “In the Hope of Memories.”

In the Hope of Memories

Olivia Rivers
Publication date: March 21, 2016
Genres: YA Contemporary
Hope is dying.

Hope Jackson has lived her short life to the fullest, but her four closest friends are dangling on the brink of disaster. Right before dying of a rare heart condition, Hope sets up a scavenger hunt across New York City using her graffiti art. The directions she leaves her friends are simple: Solve the clues hidden in her art, and they’ll solve the problems haunting their lives.

Hope is dead.

Two days after her heart fails, Hope’s friends are thrown together:

Aiden, her best friend, whose plans to attend college have been scattered by his OCD.
Kali, her foster sister, whose last ties to sanity are as razor-thin as her anorexic waistline.
Erik, her high school crush, whose success as an athlete is based on a lie with no end in sight.

And Sam, her online pen-pal, whose perfect life exploded into chaos in the aftermath of a school bombing.

Together, the four teens take to the streets of New York to complete Hope’s scavenger hunt and fulfill her dying wishes. But in order to unravel the clues hidden in Hope’s graffiti, her friends will need to confront their personal demons head on.

Hope is within reach.
About the Author

Olivia Rivers is a hybrid author of Young Adult fiction. Her works include the independently published novels “Frost Fire” and “In the Hope of Memories,” along with the traditionally published novel “Tone Deaf” (Skyhorse 2016.) As a certified geek, she enjoys experimenting with new publishing technologies, and her online serials have received over 1,000,000 hits on Wattpad.com. When Olivia isn’t working as a writer, she’s a typical teen attending college in Northern California. Olivia is represented by Laurie McLean of Fuse Literary, and nothing thrills her more than hearing from readers.

An eBook copy of IN THE HOPE OF MEMORIES by Olivia Rivers
Open Internationally
Ends April 8, 2016

Ayanami Faerudo

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