HEIDI'S PICK SIX
1. Which of your characters is your favorite?
Mark Sakai is my favorite character of the series. I love Sanaa and Jiro, but I love writing Mark more because he’s been through so much in his life and he’s still swinging. He lives by honor and his family duty even if everyone around him mutinies. I’ve already decided that I love him so much I’ll have to write a prequel from his perspective. Getting in his head will be messy but enjoyable work.
2. Tell me about your travels.
3. Coffee, tea, or milk?
Tea. Loads of tea. I have an insulated pot that I make in the morning and if I’ve gone through it by noon, I’m in a whole mess of trouble (this happened today and I was up at 5am, oops!) But I love pretty much all forms of tea: black, green, white, rooibus, fruit, herbal. There’s a tea for every occasion.
4. What else can you do besides write?
My main hobby outside of writing is knitting. I’ve been an avid knitter since 2005. For a while, I even ran an online knitting magazine and I’ve published a few patterns that are no longer available. I wish I had more time to devote to it, but, between the writing and my kids, I am pressed for time everywhere.
5. Who are you reading right now?
I’m reading Katie L. Carroll’s Elixir Bound which is way outside of my usual genres. I don’t really get into fantasy but this one has me hooked. I love its sense of adventure.
6. Pop culture or academia?
7. What is the toughest scene you ever wrote?
8. Where do you find your inspirations to write?
9. Food you could eat everyday.
Japanese (I’m sure you could guess that) and Mexican food. Strange, right? But I love them both and could eat them day in and day out.
10. Are you into sports or other physical activities?
I do yoga and weight lifting, plus when the weather’s nicer, I’ve recently taken up running. I’m very slow at it but it does the job of clearing my mind.
11. What kind of music speaks to you?
I listen to mainly electronica, ambient, and downtempo music. The Magnetic Fields and Radiohead are my favorite bands.
12. Do you outline your stories or do they just take you along for the ride?
13. Celebrity crush.
Has been and always will be Alan Rickman. Forever and ever. Amen.
14. Who are the biggest influences on your work?
15. Do you still watch cartoons?
S. J. Pajonas loves all things Asian and has been in love with Japan for as long as she can remember. Writing about Asia and Japan came naturally after studying the culture and language for over fifteen years. She studied film and screenwriting first and eventually segued into fiction once she was no longer working a full-time job.
Released is S. J. Pajonas’s second work, book two of four in the Nogiku Series. The first book in the series, Removed, is described as “a wonderful story” with “engaging characters, seamless world building, and an action packed plot.” It’s an “up-til-3am-because-I-read-it-in-one-sitting book.” She also writes contemporary romance and her upcoming first book in the Love in the Digital Age series will be published in 2014.
S. J. lives with her husband and two children just outside of New York City. She loves reading, writing, film, J- and K-dramas, knitting, and astrology. Her favorite author is Haruki Murakami and favorite book is The Wind-up Bird Chronicle.
You can find S. J. online at:
Follow the rest of S. J.'s blog tour at http://lolasblogtours.com/2013/11/21/blog-tour-nogiku-series-by-sj-pajonas.
Find out more about Lola's Blog Tours (Organizing book blog tours, cover reveals, book blitzes and review opportunities) at:
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Duty knows no family. Love has no price. Secrets can cost you everything.
Twenty-year-old Sanaa Griffin, a sweet and smart half-Japanese girl, is about to get more than she bargained for when she wishes for love and excitement on New Year’s Eve 3103. Mark Sakai, who knows more about her than any stranger should, thinks Sanaa is the perfect person to spy on the heads of the three biggest Japanese clan leaders in Nishikyō. He wants her to gather enough evidence to keep them from going to war when they land on Earth’s colonization planet, Yūsei. Nishikyō, built by the Japanese 300 years ago to house the rest of mankind, is failing and everyone is preparing to leave. Sakai has known Sanaa’s family all her life but she knows nothing of him! And despite all the time they spend together, he keeps his distance from her. Then one day, he brings her to Jiro, his nephew, to learn sword fighting, and it changes her life irrevocably. Between falling in love with Jiro and the information she is gathering on the clans, Sanaa realizes Sakai is holding back secrets about her family and her deceased parents, secrets as to why she was chosen for this job, and learning the truth puts her and all of Nishikyō in danger.
You can find Removed on Goodreads.
You can watch the trailer for REMOVED here:
**Contains spoilers for those who have not read REMOVED (Book 1)**
Left in the desert to recuperate from her injuries, Sanaa Itami paces the floors and contemplates her mistakes. She trusted too easily, and now people she loved are dead, killed at the hands of men coming to assassinate her. Sanaa feels beaten, but life awaits her at home. While Nishikyō recovers from the earthquake, negotiations for Sanaa’s eventual rule on Yūsei continue. New allies must be made, new friendships brokered, new skills acquired — at all costs. Life at the top of the chain is complicated and lonely, though. With relations in Sakai clan rocky and uncertain, Sanaa must learn to trust others again more than she’s willing. Who amongst the clans is left holding a grudge? And will the new family Sanaa has found with Jiro support or betray her? From Nishikyō to Yūsei, RELEASED, Book TWO of the Nogiku Series, is the second book in a captivating New Adult post-apocalyptic romance series that harnesses the cultures and traditions of Japan and sweeps them into the future between Earth and a faraway land.
You can find Released on Goodreads.