Can you tell us your name and the title of the book you live in?
My name’s Julianne Casquette, but I usually go by Juli. The story of my senior year and the summer before is told in Want by Stephanie Lawton.
Describe to our readers your role in the book.
I’m the main character and it’s told from my point of view. But you want to know a secret? I’m kind of an unreliable narrator. Oops
How did you convince your author to put you in this book? For example, did you visit a dream or make yourself known some other way? It was actually my mama who first got stuck in the author’s head. She started wondering what kind of home life the daughter of such an unstable and shallow woman would have. It snowballed from there and I was created. (Gee, thanks, Steph. You’re kind of sick, you know that?)
Is your author easy to work with or controlling? I don’t really get along with other girls or women, so she wasn’t a walk in the park. At first she made me really weak—which pissed me right off, let me tell you—so she gave me some guts and determination. Oh, and did I mention I’m a redheaded Taurus? I was very pleased with that decision. (See: stubborn.)
Would you tell us about one of your favorite friends from this book? Like I just said, I don’t really get along with other girls and everyone at school is scared of my mama, so … that doesn’t leave much room for friends.
Up until the last half of my book, my closest confidant is Mr. Cline, who’s been giving me piano lessons since I was really little. He’s like a grandfather to me, so that’s why I almost came unhinged when he had a stroke.
He’ll always hold a very special place in my heart—despite what went down with his nephew.
What would you like our readers to know about you? I’m complicated. And contradictory. And a wee bit irrational. I’m working on it.
Did you learn anything during your adventure in this book? I sure did, and from the unlikeliest people. I learned the hard way to open up to people and let them in. I learned that I’m not the best judge of character, that my parents had a life before me, and not everything is about me and my problems.
I learned that I’m stronger than I thought, and being stubborn isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s taken me pretty far and I’m proud of my accomplishments. I learned that not everything is black and white.
And most importantly, I learned what love—and forgiveness—really looks like.
Can you tell us what you think is the most exciting thing that happened to you in your book? That would spoil a lot of the story, and my author would get pissed at me. I have a lot of “firsts” in this story, so almost everything that happens is exciting is some way, both good and bad.
You want some juicy stuff? Well, I have my first kiss and first real make-out session. I get attacked a couple times. I sneak out. I get buzzed. I fall in love. Kind of …
Is there anything in your story you wish you hadn’t done? Why? Oh, you bet. I wish I hadn’t done most of the things I did. I made one mistake after another.
Mostly, I wish I had stood up for myself. I wish I had confronted my parents before things got really out of hand and demanded that they plug in and pay attention.
What was your main motivation? Fear. Lust. Curiosity.
Introduce us to your main adversary? It’s funny because the people I thought were adversaries weren’t necessarily the biggest threats, and some of the people I trusted turned out to be the biggest enemies.
Is there anything you would like to have done but your author stopped you? Thankfully, yes. I almost made a huge mistake, but she pulled me back from the edge.
Here’s your chance to speak your mind. What do you want to tell everybody? Believe in yourself. Trust that things can get better. Take help when it’s offered. See people as they are, not how you want them to be.
And sometimes, the thing you need most is right in front of your face.
Craziest thing you’ve ever done? I’ve snuck out of the house to go to a bar. (It’s not what you think.)
What’s your biggest regret? I didn’t confide in anyone until it was too late.
If you were to get a tattoo, what would it be, where, and why? I’ve been thinking of getting the words, “Never give up” down the inside of my arm between my elbow and wrist. If you look closely at the picture of me on the cover of the book, you’ll see why.
Favorite book? Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Someone asks you to go skydiving. What’s your answer? No way, no how.
If you weren’t a musician, what would you be doing? I don’t even want to think about it.
If they were to name a crayon color after you, what would it be? Blood red
Were you easy or hard to write? I was a problem child.
Your motto? “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” I think Steve Martin said that. Or maybe “Be your own hero.”
Absolute worst thing you’ve ever done? I hurt the people I love most.
Detail about yourself that’s not in your book? I love children.
Julianne counts the days until she can pack her bags and leave her old-money, tradition-bound Southern town where appearance is everything and secrecy is a way of life. A piano virtuoso, she dreams of attending a prestigious music school in Boston. Failure is not an option, so she enlists the help of New England Conservatory graduate Isaac Laroche.
Julianne can’t understand why Isaac suddenly gave up Boston’s music scene to return to the South. He doesn’t know her life depends on escaping it before she inherits her mother’s madness. Isaac knows he must resist his attraction to a student ten years his junior, but loneliness and jealousy threaten his resolve.
Their indiscretion at a Mardi Gras ball—the pinnacle event for Mobile’s elite—forces their present wants and needs to collide with sins of the past.
Will Julianne accept the help she’s offered and get everything she ever wanted, or will she self-destruct and take Isaac down with her?
After collecting a couple English degrees in the Midwest, Stephanie Lawton suddenly awoke in the deepest reaches of the Deep South. Culture shock inspired her to write about Mobile, Alabama, her adopted city, and all the ways Southern culture, history and attitudes seduce the unsuspecting.
A lover of all things gothic, she can often be spotted photographing old cemeteries, historic buildings and, ironically, the beautiful beaches of the Gulf Coast. She also has a tendency to psychoanalyze people, which comes in handy when creating character profiles.
On her thirtieth birthday, she mourned (okay bawled) the fact that in no way could she still be considered a “young adult,” so she rebelled by picking up Twilight and promptly fell in love with Young Adult literature.
She has a love/hate relationship with Mardi Gras –where does all that money come from?–and can sneeze 18 times in a row.