Welcome to this stop on the In the Shadow of Blackbirds Blog Tour. You can find my 5* review of In the Shadow of Blackbirds By Cat Winters by clicking the link. Today I have an exclusive character interview with Julius from the novel. Without further ado, lets begin.
Welcome Julius to Read Write and Read Some More! How are you feeling today?
Umm, I'm doing well. Business is good.
How did your love of photography begin?
I don't know if I'd call what I have for photography "love." What I have is a gift. Last winter, I learned I can summon the spirits of customers' departed loved ones in my late stepfather's photography studio. My developed images reveal mortal and spirit, posing together in remarkable works of beauty that will make your jaw drop.
Out of all the photographs you have taken, which one has been your favourite?
My brother's childhood sweetheart, Mary Shelley Black, posed for me in April, and the spirit I lured into her photograph that day was so breathtaking, I used the picture in my advertisements. Perhaps you've seen it--it's my most popular image. My brother is off at war right now, but I'd love to hear what he has to say about seeing his girl with a spirit.
Your most popular photograph is the one of Mary Shelley and a spirit? Could you possibly tell us how you managed to capture a spirit, when others have such trouble trying to do so?
My mediumistic powers are stronger than most people's. That's all there is to it. Between you and me, I think the other Spiritualist photographers are all swindlers who should be locked up.
For those who call you a fraud, what do you have to say to them?
Who's been calling me a fraud? Did you hear that from my brother? No one's ever proven me to be a fraud, so anyone who doubts my talents can just keep quiet.
Just before your brother went away to war, you caught him with Mary Shelley. What were your thoughts when you saw this?
I actually laughed at first. I still pictured them both as little kids reading boring old books together in my stepfather's studio. I didn't think they knew how to do anything together besides play tiddlywinks and talk about things that would put normal people to sleep.
What was your first impression of Mary Shelley Black?
I first met her when she was about eight or so. She was a girl too smart for her own good, so I wasn't surprised Stephen started wanting to be with her all the time. I didn't realize he was attracted to anything besides her brain, but she did grow up better than I expected.
Did you think she was good enough for your brother?
She thinks she's too good for me, I'll tell you that much. But, sure, I guess she was good enough for my brother. I never expected him to marry a Rockefeller or anything.
The influenza has taken over your country but still you decide not to wear a guaze mask, why is this? Do you think you can outlive death?
I don't want death finding me hiding behind a stupid piece of gauze. I'm not a coward. I have a cousin who survived the flu. Her fevers did some scary, ugly things to her hair, but she's proof my family can face this plague.
What do you personally think is there for us after death?
My photographs are solid evidence that spirits dwell on the other side. A spirit medium friend of mine, a respectable young lady who holds séances in her apartment, calls the spirit world "the Summerland." I imagine it looking a little like my home here by the beach, but with less people who nag you about having a little fun late at night.
What do you plan to do once the war and influenza is over, that is if you survive?
Move. I'm tired of living in my stepfather's miserable old house. Maybe I'll travel to Europe and see what's left of the world over there. I have flat feet, so Uncle Sam didn't let me fight in the war.
If you could have a photograph with one spirit, who would it be and why?
I heard about a fellow named Mumler who captured Abraham Lincoln's spirit in a photo back in the 1800s. Can you imagine that? I would love to photograph old Honest Abe myself. Maybe then some people would stop pestering me about my honesty.
Thank you Julius for stopping by, it's been a pleasure to host you.
About the Book:
In The Shadow of Blackbirds
Release Date: 2nd April 2013
Synopsis: In 1918, the world seems on the verge of apocalypse. Americans roam the streets in gauze masks to ward off the deadly Spanish influenza, and the government ships young men to the front lines of a brutal war, creating an atmosphere of fear and confusion. Sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black watches as desperate mourners flock to séances and spirit photographers for comfort, but she herself has never believed in ghosts. During her bleakest moment, however, she’s forced to rethink her entire way of looking at life and death, for her first love—a boy who died in battle—returns in spirit form. But what does he want from her?
Featuring haunting archival early-twentieth-century photographs, this is a tense, romantic story set in a past that is eerily like our own time.
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Buy the Book here:
About the Author:
Cat Winters was born and raised in Southern California, near Disneyland, which may explain her love of haunted mansions, bygone eras, and fantasylands. She received degrees in drama and English from the University of California, Irvine, and formerly worked in publishing.
Her debut novel, In the Shadow of Blackbirds—a YA ghost tale set during the World War I era—is coming April 2, 2013, from Amulet Books/ABRAMS. She currently lives outside of Portland, Oregon, with her husband and two kids.
Find Cat Here:
Follow the rest of the tour hosted by ModPodgeBlogTour:
March 25th - Recreate the cover contest @ The Mod Podge Bookshelf
March 26th - Interview @ Icey Books
March 27th - This or That @ Novels News & Notes
March 28th - Guest Blog @ Two Chicks On Books
March 29th - Interview @ Hobbitsies
March 30th - This or That @ Carina's Books
March 31st - Interview @ Book Whales
April 1st - Character Interview with Julius @ Read Write and Read Some More
April 2nd - Guest Blog @ Mundie Moms
April 3rd - This or That @ The Book Galaxy
April 4th - Guest Blog @ Teen Librarian
April 5th - Interview @ A.L. Davroe
April 6th - Character Interview with Mary Shelley @ IBTeens
Huge Thanks to Gabrielle at ModPodgeBookTours for hosting the tour and choosing me to be a host. Also Thank you to Cat Winters for being an incredible author and working swiftly with us bloggers. And thank you guys for stopping by! I hope you pick up the book as it's a masterpiece!