{Interview/Giveaway} Tiffany Schmidt, Author of HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH

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Join A Backwards Story next Wednesday, April 20th, 
as I help reveal the trailer for
HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH by Tiffany Schmidt,
and come back soon to see my full review 
of this intriguing new novel!

An interview with 
Tiffany Schmidt

Tiffany Schmidt is the author of SEND ME A SIGN and BRIGHT BEFORE SUNRISE. Her ONCE UPON A CRIME FAMILY series will begin with HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH in May 2015.

When not writing or reading, Tiffany's usually chasing her impish twins (The Schmidtlets) or mischievous puggles (Biscotti & Bruschi) around their house in Pennsylvania.

She's a firm believer in Happily Ever Afters, accidental hijinks, and writing kissing scenes first -- inspired, no doubt, by her very saintly husband.

Visit her websiteFacebook, Twitter, and Tumblr!

I'm so intrigued by the fact that you've woven crime and the mafia into the world of fairy tales. What was your inspiration and how did you go about building your world?

When I decided to write a series of contemporary novels inspired by classic fairy tales, I knew some aspects would need major updating and adapting. How to translate the royal families from these tales into something that made sense in  modern America was my first challenge. The thing that always struck me about fairy tale royal families was how above the law they seemed. The three dominant characteristics in the tales I’m retelling are: money, power, and rule-breaking. When I brainstormed a way to depict that in current society I settled on crime families.

How do you go about figuring out which fairy tales will work the best? I love that you chose to retell The Princess and the Pea, which is so infrequently retold!

I wanted to write a book inspired by The Princess and the Pea. Specifically, I wanted to write the princess’s story, since her part feels more like a footnote on the tale about a prince looking for a bride. I’ve been fascinated by this princess since I was a little girl—in fact, I was convinced that may parents were abridging the story or skipping pages because none of my questions were answered: Why is the princess alone in the rainstorm? Where is her family? Does she want to marry the prince? WHY IS IT APPEALING THAT SHE BRUISES?

As a child who was more than little accident prone (they knew me by name in the ER), I knew allllll about bruises. They hurt. They aren’t pretty. It was not okay with school-aged me that the prince’s royal family was delighted by the princess’s purple skin.

I’ve always wanted to know her story—since I couldn’t find it, I wrote it.

HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH is the first book in the Once Upon a Crime series. What other fairy tales would you like to explore in future books?

I’m not telling (yet)! *insert teasing smirk of your choice* I will say the next one is a Grimm fairy tale, so that narrows it down to only two hundred or so. ^_^
What are your favorite obscure fairy tales?Which fairytale villain would you never want to reform and why?

I had a great fairy tale anthology when I was little that has long since been lost. In it, I loved the story Snow White and Rose Red (which is not at related to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs). I think my love for this story was partially because the illustrations were gorgeous, but also because the sisters (Snow & Rose) are so good to this horribly ungrateful dwarf. They keep rescuing him and he keeps finding ways to complain. Then the bear (prince!) comes along and just BAM! smacks him dead. 

I was such a reluctantly good child—I mean, I wanted to be good—but I wanted to be climbing trees in my best dresses, and taking things apart to see the insides, and trying things out (like shaking sodas) just to see what would happen—a whole lot more. Since I (usually) tried my best to be good anyway, I would get so resentful when my good behavior wasn’t recognized. 

I definitely wanted a bear (prince!) to come along and whack whomever wasn’t acknowledging my monumental efforts to behave. Then I imagined we’d go on all sort of frolics and adventures
Which fairytale villain would you never want to reform and why?

Rumpelstiltskin. He kept his end of the bargain—spun all that straw into gold. It’s completely unfair that the miller’s daughter changed her mind once she was queen. I mean, yes, he wanted her baby... but a deal’s a deal. No take backs. 

Which fairytale mode of transportation would you want to try out? (eg. Cinderella's pumpkin coach, seven league boots, ship, flying carpet, etc...)

Cinderella’s pumpkin coach. In fact, I’ll take this one, if possible. 

©Disney's Cinderella 2015; still from Turn the Right Corner


Dragon or kraken?

Dragon. Preferably one that doesn’t want to eat me and will take me for rides.

Hero or villain?

Hero. But one who’s not afraid to get into some mischief.

Prince or knight?

Prince. I can fight my own battles, so I don’t need a knight to protect me. 

Befriend the birds or the mice?

Mice. I’m a Gus-Gus fan for life!

Invisibility cloak or golden ball?

Invisibility cloak! A golden ball has always seemed rather useless. I know I’d end up breaking it and be sent to eternal timeout.
O F F I C I A   I N F O:

Author: Tiffany Schmidt
Release Date: May 19, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury

Penelope Landlow has grown up with the knowledge that almost anything can be bought or sold—including body parts. She’s the daughter of one of the three crime families that control the black market for organ transplants.

Penelope’s surrounded by all the suffocating privilege and protection her family can provide, but they can't protect her from the autoimmune disorder that causes her to bruise so easily.

And in her family's line of work no one can be safe forever.

All Penelope has ever wanted is freedom and independence. But when she’s caught in the crossfire as rival families scramble for prominence, she learns that her wishes come with casualties, that betrayal hurts worse than bruises, that love is a risk worth taking . . . and maybe she’s not as fragile as everyone thinks.


The awesome folks at Bloomsbury have offered up one copy of Tiffany Schmidt's HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH, the first in the Once Upon a Crime Family series (best name ever), to one lucky Fairy Tale Fortnight reader!

(US Only)

This giveaway ends April 22nd at midnight, EST.

To enter, make sure you are registered on the FTF giveaway registry, and then fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

Good luck!
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