Guest Post – Why I Wrote Faceless by Alyssa Sheinmel
I have been lucky enough to have received a copy of this new book Faceless by Alyssa Sheinmel. Released last week on the 7th January 2016 and published by Chicken House I have heard wonderful things about this book and I simply cannot wait to read it.
I feel completely honoured to be featuring a brilliant guest post from the wonderful author of Faceless Alyssa Sheinmel today telling us why she wrote Faceless and its a wonderful read.
I also have a giveaway of one copy of this wonderful book at the end of the post so don’t miss it!
Without further ado I will hand you over to Alyssa…
When Maisie is struck by lightning, her face is partially destroyed. She’s lucky enough to get a face transplant, but how do you live your life when you can’t even recognize yourself any more? She was a runner, a girlfriend, a good student … a normal girl. Now, after a single freak accident, all that has changed. As Maisie discovers how much her looks did and didn’t shape her relationship to the world, she has to redefine her own identity, and figure out what ‘lucky’ really means.
Why I Wrote Faceless
A while before my first book, The Beautiful Between, was published back in 2010, I began drafting some notes for a book about a girl who got into an accident that changed her face forever, who would discover how much of who she was was tied to what she looked like. Soon, I had pages of notes tucked away in the ‘Ideas’ folder on my desktop. A few years passed, and I kept coming back to this idea – but I was never quite ready to start writing, never quite sure how I wanted to tell this story.
So, when my American editor Emily Seife approached me about writing the story of a girl who’d survived a horrific accident, a girl for whom a face transplant was her best hope at having a normal life, I was immediately intrigued. I know it sounds corny, but I honestly felt like it was meant to be somehow, like this was the story I’d been waiting to write.
At the time, I wasn’t familiar with the science behind face transplants. I began my research with an article from the February 13, 2012 issue of The New Yorker. I’m pretty sure I underlined more of the article than I left untouched! My favorite line came from a plastic surgeon, who explained that while other surgeons make you well by taking you apart – by cutting out the parts of you that are no longer functional, that are diseased – plastic surgeons make you well by putting you back together. A version of that explanation made its way into Faceless. But that article was just the beginning. Soon, I was making lists of questions for very nice doctor-friends and friends of friends to answer.
Of course, it wasn’t just the science behind face transplants that made me want to write this novel. I was drawn to the story because, from the very start, I related to my main character, Maisie. A girl who doesn’t look the way she thinks she should? That was a concept I could wrap my head around. I spent so much of my own young adulthood wishing I had different hair, different skin – that I was skinnier, shorter, that my lips were fuller, my nose smaller. Often, when I looked in the mirror, I was actually surprised to find that I hadn’t transformed myself through sheer force of will. I think many readers may be able to relate to Maisie’s struggle to accept herself, just as I did.
At the end of Faceless, Maisie finally feels lucky – for surviving her accident, for finding a donor. From the very first page, I have felt lucky to tell this story, and now I feel so lucky to have the chance to share it.
You can buy Faceless here or why not visit your local independent bookshop
A huge thank you to Alyssa Sheinmel for such a gorgeous blog post.
About Alyssa Sheinmel
Alyssa Sheinmel is the author of Second Star, The Beautiful Between, The Lucky Kind, and The Stone Girl, as well as the co-author of The Haunting of Sunshine Girl series. Alyssa grew up in Northern California and New York, and attended Barnard College. She now lives and writes in New York City.
You can find out more about Alyssa Sheinmel on her website – www.alyssasheinmel.com
Or why not follow Katy on Twitter using @alyssasheinmel
The lovely people at Chicken House have given me one copy of Faceless to giveaway!
This giveaway is for UK only and the winner will need to provide me with their address to pass onto the publishers as the book will be coming straight from them.
Giveaway ends 18/01/2016
The winner will be notified on email, on this post and on twitter!
Another huge thank you to Alyssa Sheinmel for a brilliant guest post!
Also a huge thank you to Jazz at Chicken House for asking me to feature this, sending me the book for review and for the fab giveaway!
Have you read Faceless? What were your thoughts? Are you intrigued to read this book after reading this post? I would love to hear from you! Why not leave a comment by using the replt button at the top of the page or tweet me on twitter using @ChelleyToy