Here is the summary:
17 year-old Zelia has a fatal flaw, and it’s not being a lab geek or dressing like a small troll. If she forgets to breathe, she’ll die.
Zelia has suffered from Ondine’s Curse since birth, a malady that makes every breath a conscious effort. Yet after she and her younger sister Dyl are orphaned, it’s not Zelia’s misfit status that causes trouble. It’s her sister. Dyl isn’t just pretty and sweet—she’s illegal.
In the year 2150, DNA must be pure by law, and anyone with enhanced genes face death. Before an underground foster family can offer the sisters sanctuary, Dyl is abducted by people determined to profit from her trait, whether she’s alive, dismembered, or dead.
Zelia's only allies are the freak-show inhabitants of her new foster home. Along with the unexpected love of a very strange boy, she will need her flaws, their illicit traits, and every single breath to save the only family she has left.
And the interview:
Why do you think people are drawn to "dark" stories?
I think everyone wants to believe in happy endings. Seeing a character suffer and go through unbelievable odds ignites a very primal instinct of survival. And because people are by nature empathetic, we desperately want to see those characters succeed.
If THE FOUNTAIN had a theme song, what would it be and why?
Waiting for the End, by Linkin Park. I listened to it endlessly during the writing of this book. There are so many lines in this song that perfectly match what Zelia, my MC, is going through.
What fictional character from another book would your main character chose as his/her best friend and why?
Wow, you ask hard questions! Ok, hold on...
June, from Marie Lu's Legend. Zelia and June are both brilliant women and I think they would just "get" each other without trying.
What are your top 5 Dystopian lit recs and why?
Being a reader and a writer, it's hard to get lost in books now. If anything pull me out of a book because of pacing, or poor editing, or whatever, I notice. So if I can be totally lost, I'm thrilled. Here are some that have done if for me.
Legend, by Marie Lu.
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins.
Shipbreaker, by Paolo Bacigalupi
Wither, by Lauren DeStefano
I know that's only four, but technically the trilogy is three so...
What's on the top of your to-do list before the world ends?
Hmm. Live until I'm 100? Just kidding. Not really.
Travel like crazy. I want to see the Galapagos and New Zealand and Hobbit holes and so many places. I want to hang out in a Paris cafe and do absolutely nothing for a day. Basically, I want to see a lot more beautiful things and fill my memory banks until they overflow.
How does your novel stand out from others in the genre?
Many of the characters in my book have mutations, but they're not superheroes. They are not the X-men. Sure, they're crazy weird and fun, but having a background in science and medicine, I had to have fantastical elements that made sense to me. Some of the spoilers will be so cool for those who have any biology or genetic classes under their belt. But I also made it super accessible to those who are afraid of the science stuff. Basically, it's for everyone.
And who doesn't love a good romance, on top of all that?