Q: What inspired you to write The Grimrose Girls?
A: I have always loved fairytales, especially the ones with gruesome endings that served more as a "moral guidance" than a simple story. I wanted to write something inspired by these, but in a modern setting, imagining what it would be like for these tales to be told today, and what their heroines would be like.
Q: The Kirkus Review of the book says, "Grief,
identity, and friendship intersect in this enthralling mystery with dark
magical undertones that ingeniously plays with fairy-tale tropes to tell a feminist
story about empowerment and grappling with how to break away from the confines
of societal expectations of girls." What do you think of that description?
A: I think that's a perfect description of the book! The Grimrose Girls centers a lot on the relationship of these four girls, and what it's like when they lose a friend. It's a story conducted through the grief and the weight of growing up.
Q: Did you know how the novel would end before you started writing it, or did you make many changes along the way?
A: I always knew how it would end! A lot of things changed in the middle of the draft, or even the beginning, but I always envisioned the ending as it was. I'm a planner, so usually my endings don't surprise me.
Q: What do you hope readers take away from the book?
A: I hope readers are able to connect to the girls and find themselves a new way of looking at situations, and hopefully valuing their friendships even more.
Q: What are you working on now?
A: Right now I'm working on the sequel to The Grimrose Girls. The story begins almost immediately after the last book ends, and it's about the girls facing down their last semester of school and learning how to break the curse that looms over Grimrose castle.
Q: Anything else we should know?
A: I hope all readers identify and get to enjoy each tale I wove into the story! I've had a lot of fun researching fairytales, so I expect the readers to look at the details.
--Interview with Deborah Kalb