by Kristi Helvig
Publisher: Egmont USA
About the book:
A futuristic blend of Beth Revis's Across the Universe and Lenore Appelhans's Level 2, Burn Out will satisfy the growing desire for science fiction with a thrilling story of survival, intrigue, and adventure.
Most people want to save the world; seventeen-year-old Tora Reynolds just wants to get the hell off of it. One of the last survivors in Earth's final years, Tora yearns to escape the wasteland her planet has become after the sun turns "red giant," but discovers her fellow survivors are even deadlier than the hostile environment.
Holed up in an underground shelter, Tora is alone--her brilliant scientist father murdered, her mother and sister burned to death. She dreams of living on a planet with oceans, plants, and animals. Unfortunately, the oceans dried out ages ago, the only plants are giant cacti with deadly spines, and her pet, Trigger, is a gun--one of the bio-energetic weapons her father created for the government before his conscience kicked in.
When family friend, Markus, arrives with mercenaries to take the weapons by force, Tora's fury turns to fear when government ships descend in an attempt to kill them all. She forges an unlikely alliance with Markus and his rag-tag group of raiders, including a smart but quiet soldier named James. Tora must quickly figure out who she can trust, as she must choose between saving herself by giving up the guns or honoring her father's request to save humanity from the most lethal weapons in existence.
Please help me welcome Kristi.
Cherie: Can you tell us about your novel, BURN OUT, in your own words?
Kristi: It’s about a teenage girl who is one of the last survivors on Earth when our sun burns out early, and she discovers that her fellow survivors are even deadlier than the environment.
Cherie: The book sounds intriguing. What is your writing process like?
Kristi: I tend to write fast drafts to get everything down and then go back and revise...and revise. There was also astrophysics research involved in both BURN OUT and the sequel, so after consulting with astrophysicists, I have to incorporate that research into the book as well. :)
Cherie: Where did you get the idea for your novel?
Kristi: I got the idea for BURN OUT after watching a science documentary (I’m a documentary nerd), and then having a vivid dream that became the basis of the book.
Cherie: What was your favorite chapter to write?
Kristi: The first chapter was definitely my favorite to write...it was also probably the only chapter that I didn’t revise much after the first draft.
Cherie: Can you share with us something about Tora that we don’t learn about them from reading the book?
Kristi: Hmmmm...well, even though she only consumes energy gel for food in the book, Tora would really love a good steak. I’ll just say that I know that because the sequel is finished. :)
Cherie: What are you working on now?
Kristi: A YA fantasy about an assassin ballerina.
Cherie: That sounds interesting! I can't wait to hear more about the book. Now that we know about your book and you as a writer, I have some fun questions for you.
Secret crush? (It can be anyone real or fictional.)
Jericho Barrons from the Faefever series by Karen Marie Moning. It’s not so secret though—I’m pretty open about that crush, lol.
Do you believe in love at first sight?
I do, but I think it’s rare and often confused with the much more common lust-at-first-sight.
If you had all the money and time in the world, where would your dream vacation be?
I’ve always wanted to spend a summer traveling around to my bucket list vacation spots. A few of those include New Zealand, Fiji, Norway, Ireland, and Italy.
Are you a morning person or an evening person?
Ha, this one is easy. I have never and will never be a morning person. My hubby has a cup of coffee waiting for me on the counter each morning because I’m not a happy person without it. My friends will text me at 10am on the weekends and ask “Are you up yet?” I’ve been a night owl since childhood and don’t see that changing anytime soon.
Favorite movie or television show?
I’m not big on television aside from science documentaries, but love The Big Bang Theory and True Blood. The new Battlestar Gallactica is probably my fave all-time show. Fave movie is definitely The Shawshank Redemption—I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve seen that one.
Guilty pleasures that get you through the writing/revising process?
Chocolate and wine.
Favorite place to write?
On the couch, next to my pups.
Are there any types of books you don’t read?
I read a wide variety of genres, but would have to say that westerns and straight romance are not my thing.
Thanks so much for having me! :)
It’s been my pleasure!
About the author:
Kristi Helvig is a Ph.D. clinical psychologist turned sci-fi/fantasy author. She muses about Star Trek, space monkeys, and other assorted topics on her blog. Kristi resides in sunny Colorado with her hubby, two kiddos, and behaviorally-challenged dogs.
Keep in touch with Kristi