Friday, March 26, 2021

Blog Tour + #Giveaway: Lost in the Never Woods by Aiden Thomas @aidenschmaiden @XpressoTours

Lost in the Never Woods
Aiden Thomas
Published by: Feiwel & Friends
Publication date: March 23rd 2021
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

When children go missing, people want answers. When children go missing in the small coastal town of Astoria, people look to Wendy for answers.

It’s been five years since Wendy and her two brothers went missing in the woods, but when the town’s children start to disappear, the questions surrounding her brothers’ mysterious circumstances are brought back into light. Attempting to flee her past, Wendy almost runs over an unconscious boy lying in the middle of the road, and gets pulled into the mystery haunting the town.

Peter, a boy she thought lived only in her stories, claims that if they don’t do something, the missing children will meet the same fate as her brothers. In order to find them and rescue the missing kids, Wendy must confront what’s waiting for her in the woods.

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Interview with Aiden Thomas

What made you want to become a writer?

It was honestly my love for telling stories. When I was in elementary school, I used to write stories (obviously very short and very bad) on pieces of loose notebook paper during class when I was supposed to be paying attention. My mom loves telling everyone how my teacher would send me home on Fridays with plastic bags full of doodles and writing that I accumulated during the week.

What inspired you to write Lost in the Never Woods?

Honestly, the inspiration for “Lost in the Never Woods” was definitely the slow and creeping kind! I loved the Disney film as a kid and had the BIGGEST crush on Jeremy Sumpter in the 2003 adaptation. There’s also some incredible lines in that movie, but the one that really stuck out to me was when Peter says, “I want always to be a boy, and have fun.” And Wendy replies, “You say so, but I think it is your biggest pretend.”

That concept that Peter was trapped in Neverland, that he had some sort of duty to the Lost Boys when he was clearly so drawn to Wendy, stuck in brain. I wanted to know why he was in Neverland, what it meant for him to be afraid of his feelings, and what this concept of growing up really meant to him. I read the original “Peter Pan” quickly after that and learned how really dark the canon is how, and how deeply troubled and traumatized Peter was. I was really interested in his mental and emotional turmoil, which led me to wondering, “What happened to Wendy after Neverland?” and that was the real beginning of “Lost in the Never Woods”!

Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in Lost in the Never Woods?

Lost in the Never Woods” is a dark, contemporary reimagining of “Peter Pan”! When Wendy and her two brothers were little, they went missing in the woods behind their house. While Wendy was found, her brothers never were. The story begins on Wendy’s 18th birthday. There’s a string of child disappearances in her small hometown of Astoria, OR and people are starting to wonder if Wendy and her brothers are somehow connected, but since Wendy has no memories from the time she was missing, she has no idea. 

On her way home, she nearly runs over a boy lying in the middle of the road. He claims to be Peter Pan, a make believe boy from the stories Wendy used to tell her brothers. He tells Wendy he knows what happened to her and where her brothers and the other missing kids are. But, in order to get them back, Wendy has to help Peter find his shadow.

You know I think we all have a favorite author. Who is your favorite author and why?

I think my favorite author is probably Madeline Miller. “The Song of Achilles” is my favorite book of all time and “Circe” was also incredible. She’s a talented writer and her prose is absolutely stunning!

Can you tell us a little bit about your next books or what you have planned for the future?

Right now I’m working on the first book of my upcoming fantasy duology! I’ve comped it as Percy Jackson meets “the Hunger Games”. It’s about demigods who have to battle it out in a life or death competition. I’ve also got my first scifi book coming out after the duology which I’ve been lovingly referring to as “Gay Titanic in Space”.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

I think my favorite part about writing “Lost in the Never Woods” was how I really just got to deep dive into one of my favorite stories and give it my own spin. I used to write fanfiction a lot and doing a retelling feels a lot like writing fanfiction — you get to play with characters you already love but give them a unique spin.

Author Bio:

Aiden Thomas is a New York Times Bestselling author with an MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College. Originally from Oakland, California, they now make their home in Portland, Oregon. As a queer, trans Latinx, Aiden advocates strongly for diverse representation in all media. Aiden’s special talents include: quoting The Office, winning Jenga, finishing sentences with “is my FAVORITE”, and killing spiders. Aiden is notorious for not being able to guess the endings of books and movies, and organizes their bookshelves by color.

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