I am super excited to have our British Books Challenge author of the month for January, Juno Dawson on Tales today with a brilliant Q&A to celebrate the release of Margot & Me.
Margot & Me was released on the 26th January 2017 published by Hot Key and is set to be a brilliant read set in both war time and the 90’s.
Juno is also #BritishBooksChallenge17 author of the month for January 2017!
Check out the #BritishBooksChallenge17 Spotlight on Juno, her books and find out why people are loving her so much – here
You can find out more about the #BritishBooksChallenge17 here
And that’s not all!
With thanks to Hot Key I have a spare copy of Margot & Me to giveaway on twitter – here
About Margot & Me
Fliss’s mum needs peace and quiet to recuperate from a long illness, so they both move to the countryside to live with Margot, Fliss’s stern and bullying grandmother. Life on the farm is tough and life at school is even tougher, so when Fliss unearths Margot’s wartime diary, she sees an opportunity to get her own back.
But Fliss soon discovers Margot’s life during the evacuation was full of adventure, mystery . . . and even passion. What’s more, she learns a terrible secret that could tear her whole family apart . . .
Welcome to Tales Of Yesterday Juno. I’m so so happy to have you here! I’m super excited for Margot & Me which was released on the 26th January 2017 so I’m over the moon to get to chat to you all about it.
Can you tell us a little about Margot & Me?
It’s about the relationship between a modern girl, Fliss, and her overbearing grandmother, Margot. When Fliss discovers Margot’s wartime diary, she unearths a massive family scandal that changes everything.
Can you tell us a little about the main character Fliss?
I wanted to write a character who was a little less ‘together’ than some of my previous characters. She can seem a little spoiled, a bit of a princess, but you learn she’s basically spent a lot of her teens caring for her mum, and she’s NOT impressed at having to leave her life behind to move to rural Wales.
Can you tell us about some of the other characters in Margot & Me?
Margot is as much of a main character as Fliss. Her diaries reveal a very different side to her and you come to understand why she’s such a tyrant in the present! It’s a story about two teenage girls separated by fifty years.
Both girls have a #squad and, as you’d expect from a Juno Dawson novel, a diverse #squad at that.
What made you want to write a story that was set in both the present and the past?
I used to teach Year 5 history lessons about the evacuation and there’s something very evocative about that time. It’s a theme much explored in children’s fiction. It’s a way to get rid of parents for one thing and quite allegorical for being evacuated from childhood and into adulthood too.
How does the story flow in the book? Do we see the diary as entries or is it written as Margot’s story?
Margot’s sections are diary entries, Fliss’s are not. There are a lot of parallels – both girls are growing up in challenging times.
As the diary of Margot is set during The Blitz in the 1940’s how did you find writing historical fiction? Was there much research involved?
There was, although there’s nothing more boring that authors showing off about how much research they’ve done by putting it all in the novel. Why would a character living IN the 40s wax lyrical about how delightfully vintage and antique their surroundings are? It’s a story, not a non-fiction account of life in the war.
What was your favourite scene to write in Margot & Me?
It’s a real weepy and I had to make myself have a lovely cry or why would anyone else? There’s something very cathartic about having a cry when reading. I can’t say much about it, spoilers, but the very last one is my favourite scene.
What was the most difficult scene to write in Margot & Me?
The first page! This book has had more opening paragraphs that I’ve had hot meals.
If you could sum up Margot & Me in 5 words what would you choose?
Moving, heartbreaking, cosy, witty and bittersweet.
You have had some wonderful quotes from brilliant authors already ….will we need a big pack of tissues whilst reading?
Yes, for both crying and masturbation.
This is your sixth fiction book (plus two non fiction) – what have you learnt, with regards to your writing, along the way?
I think you have to write for yourself. Don’t try to second-guess your readers or the industry. That way madness lies.
Could you tell us a little bit about what you’re writing next?
I’m still working on my memoir, The Gender Games, which will be about in July!
Thanks so much for answering all of my questions Juno! x
You can buy a copy of Margot & Me here or from your local bookshop
About Juno Dawson
Queen of Teen 2014 Juno Dawson is the multi award-winning author of six novels for young adults. In 2016, she authored the best-selling World Book Day title: SPOT THE DIFFERENCE.
Her next novel is the beautiful and emotive MARGOT & ME (Jan 2017) which will be followed by her adult debut, the memoir THE GENDER GAMES (Jul 17).
Juno also wrote the bestselling non-fiction guide to life for young LGBT people, THIS BOOK IS GAY. In 2016 a follow-up, MIND YOUR HEAD, featured everything a young person needs to know about mental health.
Juno is a regular contributor to Attitude Magazine, Glamour Magazine and The Guardian and has contributed to news items on BBC Women’s Hour, Front Row, ITV News, Channel 5 News, This Morning and Newsnight concerning sexuality, identity, literature and education.
Juno’s titles have received rave reviews and have been translated into more than ten languages around the world.
Juno grew up in West Yorkshire, writing imaginary episodes of Doctor Who. She later turned her talent to journalism, interviewing luminaries such as Steps and Atomic Kitten before writing a weekly serial in a Brighton newspaper. In 2015, Juno announced her intention to undergo gender transition and live as a woman.
Juno writes full time and lives in Brighton. In her spare time, she STILL loves Doctor Who and is a keen follower of horror films and connoisseur of pop music. In 2014 Juno became a School Role Model for the charity STONEWALL.
You can find out more about Juno on her website – www.junodawson.com
Or why not follow Juno on twitter using @
Don’t forget with thanks to Hot Key I have a spare copy of Margot & Me to giveaway on twitter – here
A huge thank you to Juno and also Tina at Hot Key for organising this post, embracing the #BritishBooksChallenge17 and providing a copy of the book for a giveaway!
Have you read Margot & Me? What did you think? What was your favourite part? If you have not read it yet have we tempted you to go and grab a copy? I would love to hear from you! Why not leave a comment using the reply button at the top of this review or tweet me on twitter using @chelleytoy!