{Guest Post/Autographed Book Giveaway} Behind the Scenes with Alethea Kontis as she reveals the missing FINAL chapter from her latest published novel DEAREST!

Hey bookworms!

I'm  honored to post not once, not twice, but THREE times this month for the DEAREST tour! 

Today, I'm helping to close out the tour with information on a special deleted chapter that

1 - Launch
2 - Lilac Reviews
3 - Special post @ Waterworld Mermaids

3 - Coffee Books & Art & The Book Lovers' Lounge
4 - Special post @ USA Today's Happy Ever After

4 - Buried Under BooksMommabears Book Blog, & Rabid Reads
5 - Interview @ J.T. Ellison

5 - Gidget Girls Reading
6 - Zerina Blossom & Geo Librarian
8 - Welcome to Book City
9 - Kelly P's Blog & Katy's Krazy Books
10 - Mel's Shelves & Jan Edwards
11 - Katie's Clean Book Collection
12 - A Backwards Story 
Wishful Endings
13 - Library of a Book Witch & The Quotable
14 - 
Biggest Literary Crushes post on @ Teen Reads
15 - The Written Adventure
16 - My Life Loves and Passion & Colorimetry
17 - I Am A Reader & The Library of the Seen

18 - Special post on @ Dear Teen Me
18 - Printcess & Living a Goddess Life & Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf
19 - 100 Pages A Day & mrsjennyreads
20 - Books and Ashes & Addicted Readers
22 - Miss Little Book Addict YA House of Books
23 - SBM Book Obsession
24 - Deal Sharing Aunt
25 - Min Reads and Reviews
26 - Pieces of Whimsy & Wonderous Reviews
27 - The Scribbling Sprite
28 - Grand Finale

In Case You Missed It:

Alethea's guest post,

I previously reviewed both ENCHANTED and HERO,
along with my review of her novella BLOOD & WATER!
(And an interview with ENCHANTED cover designer Christine Kettner!)

Alethea Kontis has also stopped by A Backwards Story several times to talk about her books, fairy tales, mermaids, and more because she's awesome like that! *loves her*

Here's her interview about ENCHANTED!
a flash fiction piece entitled "Well Behaved Mermaids Rarely Make Fairy Tales,"
a guest post on "Families in Fiction,"
a guest post on "The Real Peter Woodcutter,"
and two of her famous fairy tale rant videos, one about Rapunzel and one about Cinderella and how it inspired her novel ENCHANTED!

New York Times bestselling author Alethea Kontis is a princess, a goddess, a force of nature, and a mess. She’s known for screwing up the alphabet, scolding vampire hunters, turning garden gnomes into mad scientists, and making sense out of fairy tales. Alethea is the co-author of Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter Companion, and penned the AlphaOops series of picture books. Her short fiction, essays, and poetry have appeared in a myriad of anthologies and magazines. She has done multiple collaborations with Eisner winning artist J.K. Lee, including The Wonderland Alphabet and Diary of a Mad Scientist Garden Gnome. Her debut YA fairy tale novel, Enchanted, won the Gelett Burgess Children’s Book Award in 2012 and was nominated for both the Andre Norton Award and the Audie Award in 2013.
Visit Alethea's websiteYouTube ChannelFacebook, and Twitter!

“Messenger, or the Missing Chapter from DEAREST”
by Alethea Kontis

The storm at the crossroads when an author and editor clash is always an interesting thing. I've certainly experienced my share of challenges while writing the Woodcutter Sisters so far! ENCHANTED, a labor of love that took me almost five years from brilliant idea to completed manuscript, was originally 107,000 words. I was asked to cut it down to 75,000. 
(You can watch me read a bunch of these deleted scenes 

Because of the surprise two-book contract that came on the heels of ENCHANTED, I only had about three months to write HERO. Somehow I did it--I didn't even read the first draft through before sending it off to my editor because I knew I'd end up looking at it at least six times more before it went to publication. Boy, was that revision letter a long one. Three pages of issues I needed to tackle, including the removal of a specific plot device that ran through the entire book. See, I decided that emotions that overflowed from the world below would find their way into the ice caverns of the White Mountains and be frozen there. Each emotion was a different color (there was a great scene where Saturday tasted Love and pretty much hated it). Saturday ended up killing the witch by forcefeeding her a stalagmite full of Truth, at which point the witch realized she didn't have Jack Woodcutter in her clutches after all. At the end, when the mountain was blown to pieces, the emotions were freed and became the Northern Lights. 

But now I had to take out the emotions. All of them, every single instance, which meant that I had to find a new way to dispose of my Bad Guy. I cried and threw things for two whole days. Then I sat down, accepted the challenge, and in one month rewrote about a third of HERO to make it the much stronger story it is today. 

Because I always knew DEAREST would be next after HERO, I had a blissful year in which to write it. My only real comments from the editor were to ramp up the romance between Tristan and Friday (which I had planned to do anyway), and to remove Chapter 20 in its entirety. 

Yup, you heard that right. ENCHANTED and HERO both have twenty Chapters. Dearest only has nineteen. Since I started DEAREST with a chapter from Conrad's point of view, I thought it fitting to end the book with his point of view as well. It was also my opportunity to tie the storyline back up with that at the end of HERO, since the two novels occur simultaneously. However, it did introduce a few new characters and the intentions to continue the adventure...as the good Season Finale to every TV show would. 

But DEAREST was not a TV show, and my editor thought that the novel reached a satisfying conclusion at the end of Chapter 19. She didn't want it to have a Lord of the Rings five-part ending...which I get...but the adventure still ends the way I wrote it. And the saga of the Woodcutters will continue on from that point. 

Those fans of DEAREST can now read Chapter 20 -- entitled "Messenger" -- on Kindle and Nook:


I put a cursory price of 99 cents on them so that folks new to the series wouldn't ruin the story for themselves or other fans on the internet. I kind of hate that I had to do that...but I thought it for the best, in the long run. 

And so...onward with the Woodcutters! Adventure awaits!

O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Author: Alethea Kontis
Release Date: February 3, 2015
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Received: For Review

In her third book about the delightful Woodcutter sisters, Alethea Kontis masterfully weaves The Wild Swans, The Goose Girl, and a few other fine-feathered fairy tales into a magical, romantic companion novel to ENCHANTED and HERO.

Readers met the Woodcutter sisters (named after the days of the week) in Enchanted and Hero. In this delightful third book, Alethea Kontis weaves together some fine-feathered fairy tales to focus on Friday Woodcutter, the kind and loving seamstress. When Friday stumbles upon seven sleeping brothers in her sister Sunday's palace, she takes one look at Tristan and knows he's her future. But the brothers are cursed to be swans by day. Can Friday's unique magic somehow break the spell?


Enter to win...

Win (1) of (3) Woodcutter Series Prize Packs, which include signed copies of ENCHANTED, HERO, and DEAREST!

US Only.

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