Melissa Walker was the first author to stop by We Have Words, and we’re so glad she’s back to celebrate the paperback release of SMALL TOWN SINNERS (out now)!
You’ll have a chance to learn more about the book (which is so lovely) later in this post, but first, we want to tell you about a contest Melissa’s running. All you have to do is snap a pic of the SMALL TOWN SINNERS paperback when you see it in the wild, and you could win a whoooooole lotta books! Read more about the contest over at Melissa’s blog.
And now, Melissa answered Mindi’s Very Important Questions:
1. At age eight, what did you want to be when you grew up? And at age eighteen? And while you’re at it, what about at age twenty-eight?
Melissa Walker: Eight: A vet. Eighteen: A writer. Twenty-Eight: Still a writer. Yay!
2. Which Breakfast-Club-style label would have best fit your teenage self? [Examples from the movie are brain, athlete, basket case, princess, and criminal, but feel free to make up your own!]
MW: I think Gossip would have fit best, which I’m not proud of. I really did sling a lot of it around, and I didn’t think about repercussions. LAME. I changed though. So that’s good.
3. Without giving away too much from your newest book, which character or scene from it are you the most pleased to have created, and why?
MW: Well, in Small Town Sinners, I’m most proud of the quieter scenes between Lacey Anne and her friends. The Hell House scenes were the ones I was excited to write–they get a little nuts–but the softer ones ended up being my favorites.
4. Which are your favorite movies to watch again and again?
MW: Anytime these movies are on, I will stick to the couch: Jaws, Point Break, Die Hard, Taken, Some Kind of Wonderful and this year I think I’d add The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
5. And, now, the most important question of all: Beatles or Elvis? Please support your answer. 😉
MW: Beatles, only because it’s easier to listen to a huge range of their stuff than it is to do Elvis for DAYS, especially if we’re allowing solo careers to mix in. But believe me, I’ve been to Graceland and if someone wants to do Elvis for days, I’m down.
About SMALL TOWN SINNERS:
Lacey Anne Byer is a perennial good girl and lifelong member of the House of Enlightenment, the Evangelical church in her small town. With her driver’s license in hand and the chance to try out for a lead role in Hell House, her church’s annual haunted house of sin, Lacey’s junior year is looking promising. But when a cute new stranger comes to town, something begins to stir inside her. Ty Davis doesn’t know the sweet, shy Lacey Anne Byer everyone else does. With Ty, Lacey could reinvent herself. As her feelings for Ty make Lacey test her boundaries, events surrounding Hell House make her question her religion.”
A few reviews:
“Walker has written a credible and tender evocation of the moment when a young person’s beliefs begin to emerge and potentially diverge from the teachings of a family’s religion…” —The New York Times Book Review
“A non-judgmental, nuanced, fascinating look at the teenage religious right… Walker writes an outstanding contemporary novel with a cast of characters who, far from being portrayed as hateful zealots, are relatable for readers of all faiths.” –Romantic Times
“Both tender and provocative… Walker creates an astutely balanced portrait of a conservative congregation’s in-your-face response to perennial issues of domestic abuse, teen pregnancy, and suicide, as well as of those who struggle to fit the prescribed Christian mold.” —Publishers Weekly