Monday, March 2, 2015

The Last List Blog Hop: Q&A with Kristi Helvig (+Giveaway)

As part of The Last List Blog Hop, which is meant to showcase EgmontUSA titles (for those who don't know, has closed), I have an interview here with Kristi Helvig, author of Burn Out and its sequel Strange Skies (coming out this summer)!

 About the Book:
Strange Skies (Burn Out, #2) Action, adventure, and romance are heating up in this sequel to the futuristic science fiction thriller Burn Out. Perfect for fans of Across the Universe and The Memory of After. Caelia is the new Earth. That's what the Consulate told everyone and, against all odds, Tora finally has made it there. She can't see the ocean from her cell in the Consulate's containment center, and she doesn't know what happened to the weapons her father died for and she's risked her life to save. But as she plans her escape, she runs into the last person she ever expected to see-her dad. The Consulate has kept him prisoner in a complicated plot designed to lure Tora out of hiding. Now Tora has a new purpose: break free, get the guns, and save her father. But first she'll have to navigate a strange new planet, track down James (whose loyalties still remain questionable), and find Kale…before he finds her first.

 About the Author:
Kristi Helvig is a Ph.D. clinical psychologist turned sci-fi/fantasy author. Her first novel, BURN OUT (Egmont USA), which Kirkus Reviews called “a scorching series opener not to be missed,” follows 17-year-old Tora Reynolds, one of Earth’s last survivors, when our sun burns out early. In the sequel, STRANGE SKIES, coming 4/28/2015, Tora makes it to a new planet only to discover a whole new host of problems—and the same people who still want her dead. Order Kristi’s books through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or your favorite local retailer.
 Kristi muses about Star Trek, space monkeys, and other assorted topics on her blog at and Twitter (@KristiHelvig). You can also find her on Facebook. Kristi resides in sunny Colorado with her hubby, two kiddos, and behaviorally-challenged dogs.

How did you come up with the idea for the Burn Out series?
Theres a really long answer for this that Ive given in other posts, so the abbreviated version is that it was based on a vivid dream I had after watching a science documentary late at night that included what would happen to Earth when our sun eventually burns out. I dreamed the entire book that night.

Was it hard to write a sequel?
Some things were challenging, such as keeping track of characters and events, but once I got into a zone, it flowed pretty fast. I wrote STRANGE SKIES in less than two months.

Describe your series in three words.
Dont trust anyone.

Do you have any odd writing habits?
I have this spot on the couch (by my dogs) where I write with my coffee. I get into this zone whenever I sit therein fact, Im sitting there now, so its my only little ritual I follow. My husband sometimes calls me Sheldon from Big Bang Theory due to my seating preference. :)

Do you have any other books you plan on writing?
Aside from writing Book 3 of BURN OUT, I just finished a YA fantasy thats about to head to my agent, and next up is a YA thriller.

What book(s) defined your childhood? Or got you into reading?
I read the entire Nancy Drew series by Carolyn Keene when I was in 2nd grade, and wrote what would now be called Nancy Drew fan fiction soon thereafter. Other books I read at a young age that fueled my love of reading were the Little House on the Prairie books, The Secret Garden, and Little Women followed closely by Dracula and Go Ask Alice.

What character(s) did you have the most fun writing about?
Markus was my fave character to write.

What was the strangest thing you had to research for this book?
Well, when I was googling most lethal bombs and weapons, I had this uh oh moment where I expected a friendly visit from Homeland Security. As the sequel takes place on an entirely new planet, the weirdest things I had to consult with an astrophysicist about were how things like planet size and distance from the moon would impact the planets speed of rotation.

What made you want to write a dystopian?
I consider the series more sci-fi than dystopian, but I didnt set out to write sci-fi either. After having the dream that inspired the book, I just wrote what flowed out, which turned out to be sci-fi.

Random Question Time:
Cats or dogs? Dogs.
Unicorns or zombies? Unicorns.
Favorite color? Icy blue
Favorite movie/TV show? Firefly
If you had one superpower, what would it be? The ability to instantly have all the household laundry done.

Thank you for answering my questions, Kristi!

You can win one ARC copy of Strange Skies!
This giveaway is international. Just enter down below.


  1. Loved Burn Out, so I'm really excited to see what happens next.
    Thanks for the chance to win it! :)

  2. Thanks for this giveaway!

    This series sounds so good, and I really want to read them! I've heard much good about the first book,so I'm convinced that this series is very well written!

  3. I love the cover and this sounds like an awesome sci-fi series and I'm looking forward to starting it soon.