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Racing Savannah by Miranda Kenneally
Release Date: December 3, 2013
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
They’re from two different worlds.
He lives in the estate house, and she spends most of her time in the stables helping her father train horses. In fact, Savannah has always been much more comfortable around horses than boys. Especially boys like Jack Goodwin—cocky, popular and completely out of her league. She knows the rules: no mixing between the staff and the Goodwin family. But Jack has no such boundaries.
With her dream of becoming a horse jockey, Savannah isn’t exactly one to follow the rules either. She’s not going to let someone tell her a girl isn’t tough enough to race. Sure, it’s dangerous. Then again, so is dating Jack…
Find Miranda: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Please welcome Miranda to Alison Can Read!
1. Tell us a little about Racing Savannah and the entire Hundred Oaks series.
Racing Savannah is about a 17-year-old girl who moves from a trailer in West Virginia to live on a fancy horse farm in Tennessee where her father just got a job. All she wants is to become an exercise rider so she won't end up working in a motel after high school, but then the owner's son gives her the opportunity to become a horse jockey and it makes her rethink her whole life.
No one has ever asked me to describe the Hundred Oaks series in general! It's a series of companion books that take place in the same town over the course of many years. Right now, 6 books are planned, but I wouldn't rule out more. :)
2. I love how the Hundred Oaks books are a set of loosely connected companion novels. Did you have in mind from the very beginning which characters you planned to have star in their own books and how the series would all connect?
Honestly, it sort of just happened. I had already written Catching Jordan, and when I started writing Stealing Parker, characters from Catching Jordan just showed up. I had planned to write stories set in various Tennessee towns, but I'm glad that everything revolves around Hundred Oaks High.
At this point in my writing, I'm actively thinking about how my next books relate back to CATCHING JORDAN and RACING SAVANNAH
3. Between Jordan, Parker, Kate, and Savannah, which character do you relate to the most and who was the hardest to write?
Of all the characters I've written, I'm most like Savannah. Not that I'm interested in horses, but that I stand up for myself and go after my dreams. I work really hard to accomplish my goals, and I don't let anyone tell me I can't do something if I want to do it. In Racing Savannah, Savannah learns that even though she's poor and nobody in her family has ever been to college, she has the right and the strength to apply to any school she wants. I hope that in reading Racing Savannah, all girls and women will learn that they have the right to do anything they want and have the power to go after it.
The hardest character to write was Kate! I really felt for her, but I also didn't like her much as a person. I knew where I wanted her to end up at the end of the book, but writing her earlier moments was tough in that she was so judgmental and set in her ways.
4. What are some of your favorite YA books? Either new or old.
I could go on and on... I really love JELLICOE ROAD by Melina Marchetta. I love anything by Sarah Dessen. THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE is a particular favorite. I adored JUST ONE DAY and JUST ONE YEAR by Gayle Forman. I love DASH AND LILY'S BOOK OF DARES.
5. What is one piece of writing advice that you find really useful beyond the typical read a lot and write a lot?
Trust your first instinct. My 7th grade science teacher once told me, “Miranda, a human being’s first instinct is correct 90% of the time. If you’re going to deviate from your first instinct, you’d better have a good reason why you should.” When I send out a first draft (or portions of a first draft) to beta readers, I’m always open-minded when comments start coming back to me, but before I consider implementing any suggested changes – I have to remind myself to think about why I wrote what I did in the first place. It’s very normal to feel silly or dumb after hearing comments, and immediately feel like you need to rush to do exactly what that person says — But you’ve also got to remember that you’re smart, too, and you wrote what you did for a reason.
Thanks so much for having me!
Thank you so much for the interview, Miranda!