You may or may not have noticed – I’ve started designing book covers. And Jessica Brooks just happens to be my first client (read: victim). It was a bit of a challenge – it couldn’t be too ‘girly’, because it’s a dual POV, and it couldn’t be too bright, because it’s set in a hopeless dystopian-ish world. Anyway, here’s the synopsis. Scroll down to check out the cover (and let me know what you think!) and enter to win a copy of her debut – open internationally!
Seventeen year-old Jonas Norton is trying to come to terms with what his blood disorder has robbed from him, including his two most favorite things: basketball, and competing in Hatchet Racket, Wanless’ annual hatchet-throwing contest. The facts that his father works constantly to pay for his blood tests and Jonas can actually see the disappointment in his eyes for being such a failure only make matters worse. And even worse than all of that? Jonas’ own twin brother, Micah, is perfectly healthy and becoming quite the basketball player. Also, Hattie, the girl Jonas has loved for forever? She has no idea how he feels.
Sixteen year-old Hattie Akerman lives down the hill from Jonas. Though her father, Heath, tries to hide his lack of mental clarity behind the bottle and she’s pretty much given up on having any kind of relationship with him, she would still rather her younger sister, Lucy, not have to deal with the consequences of his behavior. Hattie helps her mother by baking food to sell at Market and looking out for Lucy. No matter what the rest of the town says about her crazy father, Jonas sticks up for them. He is, by far, her very best friend.
As if things aren’t complicated enough already, Heath and Micah are unexpectedly drafted into President Kendrick’s army (an army from which no one ever returns) just days before Thanksgiving. When Heath disappears instead of arriving at the Meeting Place to check in, Hattie and Jonas decide they’ve had enough, and take matters into their own hands. And though nothing could have prepared them for what happens next, Hattie and Jonas learn that hope can be seen in every situation. You just have to know where to look
Jessica resides with her husband of over fifteen years, three awesome daughters, and a plethora of pets in Central California, where fog, frost, triple-digit heat and various items of produce arrive bountifully, depending on the season. She has an affinity for both coffee and owls, and loves to connect with fellow readers and writers on most social networks like Goodreads, Twitter and Pinterest. You can also connect with her on her blog, My Thoughts Exactly.
Jessica writes both young adult and adult fiction. PITY ISN’T AN OPTION is her debut novel.
Here are Jessica’s thoughts on the cover:
This cover represents the book so well–more than Hafsah even realized when she designed it!
The overall theme of Pity Isn’t An Option is just that–when you’re trying to deal with what you’ve got to survive, it isn’t an option. So the color scheme matches how I saw Jonas and Hattie’s town of Wanless perfectly; it’s dry and dull and lacking color (but still beautiful!).
Both the wheat and bird are appropriate for a few different reasons:
First, Jonas has a dream about being in a field of wheat. The wheat whips at him, cutting his skin, and eventually turns into words representing all the things he wants to control but is unable to. In fact, at the end of the dream, he sees the resolution to his current problem, but isn’t yet at a place where he “gets it”.
Second, in part two of the book, Hattie and Jonas embark on a journey to find her father. Being as the setting is in the Central Valley of California, this is something they would definitely see while walking from town to town (as well as the occasional trees you see in the background). Near the beginning of their journey they are met by a flock of crows and, unbeknownst to them, the crows are actually an omen of things about to happen.
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And now for the giveaway! Jessica was kind enough to donate a copy of PITY ISN’T AN OPTION to two lucky winners – one international and one US/Canada resident! Just fill out the Rafflecopter below. Good luck!