Amber Lin will answer reader questions in the comment section below!
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A: Thank you so much for your kind words and for hosting me! I’m so pleased at the reception Giving It Up has received, and I’m grateful to those readers and reviewers like you who are spreading the word.
I would say that Giving It Up is both: a gritty erotic story about rape but also a journey of healing and hope. I realize that seems contradictory to some, but personally I think they work well together because there can be no light without darkness.
Q: [Spoiler Question!]
Q: Colin has received both praise and criticism, the criticism being he is too much the strong and silent type. There has also been speculation as to why he pursued Allie in the first place. Care to share your thoughts?
A: I love this question! I could say it was difficult to write a book from Allie’s first person POV when Colin is such a quiet guy. But I think the true difficulty is in loving a man like him. More to the point, trusting him. Which is really the crux of the matter, because Allie can’t trust, due to her past. We live Allie’s dilemma with her. Can we trust Colin? Should we rely on him? We have to judge him by his actions and hope we make the right decision. It’s scary for Allie, and it’s also scary for the reader, which I think is why this comes up.
It would be nice if he’d just come out and tell us everything we want to know! But it wouldn’t be true to his character. And also, could Allie have trusted him that way? Look at their first encounter, when she thought he was rough and mean. Look at the guy she turned away before him, the one she would taint with her sex. The only reason she allowed Colin close to her was because she believed he was too cold to actually care about her. The combination of a gruff exterior with a kind and patient heart was the only thing that could have penetrated her walls.
|*This explains a few things*|
Colin has struggled to find love because it’s so hard for him to open up, and a regular “good girl” would want those flowery words. Allie doesn’t demand those things from him; she reaches within herself to trust him instead. In a way it’s even harder for her to trust than a woman who isn’t “damaged” but it’s also due to her pain and empathy that she’s willing to try. Although neither Colin or Allie are perfect, they are perfect for each other.
Q: Have you received any unexpected responses to Giving It Up? For instance, did you intend for the world to hate Philip to only learn that they love him?
A: I definitely expected some readers to have a problem with Allie, considering what she does at the beginning of the book and the fact that she’s a mother, but overall reactions to her have been great. It was more of a surprise to see the mixed reactions to Colin, as above.
Most of all, I have been pleasantly surprised at people’s reactions to Jacob. In romances, rapists are usually handled one way: they die. Very occasionally they go to jail or some other Very Bad Place, but usually they die, preferably in a painful, gruesome or ignominious manner. So I expected a big revolt about my handling of him. I won’t say more about what does happen to Jacob, except that it’s not black and white. I wanted a more nuanced, dare I say realistic, portrait for him. He is the bad guy in this story, but he is far from pure evil. It’s very gratifying when people get what you were trying to do ☺
Q: Lastly, your website bio mentions you have a historical manuscript. Give us the scoop on that. Is it sold to a publisher, yet?
A: Oh dear. I owe the final draft to my agent so she can shop it for me, although I admit to being totally distracted by the release of Giving It Up. And then all the great feedback got me excited about the sequel and I’ve been working on that!
But okay, my historical. It’s a very different voice from my contemporary, more of the standard historical romance style. However, it still has my dark themes… can’t get away from those ;-)
The working title right now is Merciless and the book opens on the worst night of Lord William’s night. His family is murdered, and worse, and in his grief and mad swath of vengeance, an innocent young village woman is ruined. He does the honorable thing and marries her, but his family’s enemies are still at large. Both of them must fight for their village and each other, hoping that a marriage conceived of violence can grow into love.
Thanks again, Amber! Giving It Up is an incredible novel and I wish you the best of luck with it. I'll be impatiently waiting for the sequel.
Amber Lin married her high school sweetheart, birthed a kid who’s smarter than she is, and spends her nights writing down her dirty thoughts. In other words, life is good.
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