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Interview With Samantha Sotto

Picture of the author

When Samantha Sotto emailed to ask if I’d review her latest book, Love & Gravity, I said yes without a thought and asked if I could add an interview to the arrangement. Sotto’s début, Before Ever After, a road trip novel in the fantasy genre, remains one of my favourite books and having looked over her second I thought it an idea to follow up the interview we did four years ago. (My review will be posted next week.)

Where did the idea for Before Ever After come from?

Before Ever After was inspired by the time I spent living, studying and travelling through Europe as we all as a huge dose of Dr. Who Season 3. I’m a certified Whovian and you will see a lot of The Doctor in Max, the main character of Before Ever After.

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The book is full of travel and history. What did your research for it involve?

I didn’t have an outline when I was working on it. I just knew that it was going to begin in London and end in Italy. I mapped out the countries between those places and chose the countries I had travelled to. From there, I went through the list of locations and – this will sound EXTREMELY strange for those who haven’t read the book – I googled “strange chicken facts.” This served as my inspiration for the historical stories I wrote about in each stop.

Your upcoming book, a time slip/travel, features Issac Newton and a fictional heroine. Why did you decide to write about Issac Newton, particularly in this context?

Believe it or not, Love & Gravity was inspired by an axe-wielding, vampire-hunting American President. My hubby and I had watched Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer and I left the theater with an itch to create my own alternative history tale. It made me wonder about other historical icons and think about the “secret” lives they might have led. I wanted to challenge myself by selecting the most unlikely romantic protagonist and creating a book that would completely change the way readers viewed and felt about him. I came up with a list of historical figures and decided on going with Isaac Newton after I had researched about his life and accomplishments. Isaac explained how and why the apple fell. I wanted to write about the woman who dropped it.

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Where does your love of time travel-esque stories stem from?

Time is something we have absolutely no control of in real life. It marches on whether we want it to or not. We cannot stop it, reverse it, or make it go faster. I like to write about and play with time because fiction is the only place I have power over time and can make it do what I want.

What books do you like to read; which are your favourites?

I like any book that has a good mystery box that keeps me turning the pages. Neil Gaiman is my favorite author, but the books I most recently enjoyed are The Magician’s Lie by Greer Macallister and All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.

My thanks to Samantha!

Over to you, my readers: I have both Nicola Cornick’s and Barbara Erskine’s latest time-slip books to read – any others you’d recommend?



January 23, 2017, 8:13 pm

I think perhaps my favorite novel dealing with time travel is Stephen King’s “11-22-63”. I was reluctant to read it for several reasons, but ended up loving it.

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