Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Author Spotlight: In Her Skin by Kim Savage + Interview

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 9:00 AM
KIM SAVAGE is the author of three critically acclaimed young adult novels, After the Woods, Beautiful Broken Girls (named by Kirkus as one of the 10 Best YA of 2017), and In Her Skin (releasing April 17, 2018), all with Farrar, Straus, Giroux/Macmillan. Her novels have been published in Spain, Brazil, and Turkey, and have been optioned for TV. Kim presents at conferences and book festivals nationwide; has been featured on NPR, Herald Radio, and on local cable stations; and she reads from her novels at bookstores across the country. A former reporter with a Master degree in Journalism from Northeastern University, Kim's stories are based in and around Boston. She lives with her family near Boston, not far from the real Middlesex Fells Reservation of After the Woods. Kim and her husband have three children, each of whom beg to appear in her books. They shouldn't.  

You can follow Kim on Insta (kimsavagewrites) and Twitter (khsavage), and visit her at kimsavage.me. 

Title: In Her Skin
Genre: Young Adult Mystery
Author: Kim Savage
Publisher: FSG
Publication: April 17th 2018
Cover Rating: 2/5
Reading format: Provided ARC

In Her Skin by Kim Savage is a fast-paced, mysterious story about a female con artist named Jo who decides that she is going to pretend to be a missing girl that miraculously returns. This might sound like a great plan, especially when you kind of look like the missing girl. But what happens when that missing girl is more than just missing? What happens when someone knows exactly what happened but doesn't tell anyone. What happens when that person is someone you end up living with?

Jo Chastain is homeless. She has been living in tent-city in Boston and is just tired of it. In order to escape the elements, she goes to a public library all the time. One day, she sees a girl and decides she wants to take over her identity for a while. After stealing her ID, Jo looks her up online to gather as much information about the girl as possible. That is when she sees that this girl has been involved in a missing person case. Her best friend went missing when they were nine and was never seen again. Jo looks up the girl who went missing and realizes that she looks a lot like this girl. So her plans change and she decides to pretend to be this missing girl that magically returns home. Oh, and did we mention that Vivi's family is rich? 

Everything is going great in Jo's plan. A little too great. Vivi is the girl Jo is pretending to be and Vivi's parents died in a freak plane crash and they said if Vivi ever came back then her guardians should be the Lovecrafts. The parents of the girl Jo was originally going to take the identity of when she saw her at the library. The Lovecrafts were best friends with Vivi's parents. So, they take Vivi in and try to get her life to go back to as normal as possible. But something seems a little off. 

Temple is the daughter of the Lovecrafts. Her and Vivi were best friends before her disappearance. But for some reason, Mr. and Mrs. Lovecraft don't want Temple and Vivi around each other. Wouldn't you want your kid to be happy and around her best friend after she comes back from being kidnapped for nearly a decade? What does Temple and the Lovecraft know that Jo doesn't? Maybe pretending to be a missing rich girl was a mistake. A Mistake that could cost Jo her life ang cause Vivi to go missing again.

In the end, this book was so much fun. I read a book like this back in 2016, The Stranger Game by Cylin Busby, and I really loved it so when I read the synopsis for In Her Skin and realized that it sounded a lot like that book, I decided to contact the author because I had to read this book NOW. I love mystery/crime books and this one definitely made a good addition to my shelves. If you like Young Adult mystery books then I highly suggest checking this book out for yourself. 

Overall, I gave the book 4.5/5 stars.

1) Did you always want to be an author?
If you count figuring it out around age six, yes! I used to write books on lined paper with construction paper covers and stapled spines. They mostly concerned my dog, Gretchen, getting into scrapes (cyclones, drowning, ferris wheel mishaps). I have to say, the climaxes were always exciting, but the character arcs were a little…anemic.

2) Where did the inspiration for In Her Skin come from?
In Her Skin is inspired by the life of a real-life con artist named Frédéric Bourdin who impersonated a missing boy. Bourdin looked nothing like the boy, and told a wild tale of having been kidnapped and held for years. The parents accepted him as their missing son until the FBI proved Bourdin was a con artist. I wondered why any parents would choose to believe a con, and In Her Skin sprung from that question.

3) Do you think the Young Adult book genre is important for young readers? If so, why?
I’m wary of labels, to be honest. To the end that most YA is complex and sophisticated, and has been since the days of The Outsiders and A Separate Peace, to name some examples, yes, it's a good thing that young readers read YA.

4) Who are your favorite authors?
Pamela Ahrens (The Virgins), Laura Lippman, Yoko Agawa (Revenge: Eleven Dark Tales), Jeffrey Eugenides. Donna Tartt is my all-time favorite, with Clare Messud is in the running for second. I admire Karen Russell immensely.

5) Are you currently working on any new books?
I am! Two, in fact. One is a thriller where two girls plan the perfect revenge. The second is a contemporary retelling of Shakespeare’s Richard III, who really is the greatest villain ever written. I’m loving both. I hope readers do, too!

                             Goodreads | Amazon                                    Goodreads | Amazon


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