Blog tour: Interview with Rosamund Hodge – Crimson bound.

Hello guys, I was lucky enough to be accepted for the blog tour for Crimson bound, hosted by The Midnight Garden. Crimson Bound is the new stand-alone book by Rosamund Hodge, the author from Cruel Beauty. I read Cruel beauty last year and it instantly became one of my favorite books. I am currently reading Crimson Bound and it’s just as good. Keep an eye out for my review!

Crimson Bound will be available in stores and online on May 5, 2015 in hardback, as well as on audiobook. Add it to your GoodReads shelf here! Inspired by the classic fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, Crimson Bound is an exhilarating tale of darkness, love, and redemption.


Monday, 4/20              The Midnight Garden         Fairy Tale Inspiration: Little Red Riding Hood & The Girl with No Hands
Tuesday, 4/21             Mundie Moms                    Cosmetics for Badasses
Wednesday, 4/22        Two Chicks on Books        Audiobook Clip + Interview
Thursday, 4/23            YA Romantics                    Flash Fiction #1
Friday, 4/24                 Cuddlebuggery                  The Obligatory Strong Heroine Post
Monday, 4/27              YA Midnight Reads             Writing a Bad Girl/Good Boy Romance
Tuesday, 4/28             Alice Marvels                       Flash Fiction #2  
Wednesday, 4/29        The Daily Prophecy             Interview
Thursday, 4/30            The Social Potato                Death Before Dishonor
Friday, 5/1                   The Starry-Eyed Revue       Flash Fiction #3

Check out the other stops too, because there are a lot of interesting posts! I am happy to share this interview with you today. I loved Rosamund’s answers and I hope you love them too.
imageAbout the Author:

Rosamund Hodge loves mythology, Hello Kitty, and T. S. Eliot. She writes YA fantasy that draws on two of those things. In her wild youth, she studied Medieval English at Oxford; she now lives in Seattle and writes wildly.

Visit her on the web at or follow her on Twitter: @rosamundhodge.

1. If you could be a fairytale character in any fairytale, who would you be and why?
The problem with being a character in a fairy tale is that most of them live traumatically interesting lives. Yes, Cinderella gets to go to the ball, but first she’s abused by her family for a decade straight. Yes, Beauty gets to find the handsome prince hidden within the hideous Beast, but first she has to go to a house where she thinks she may be literally eaten alive. You want to read about them, but you wouldn’t want to be them. I can tell you who is my fairy tale role model, though, and that is Janet in the ballad of Tam Lin. She doesn’t always make the wises choices, but she owns those choices, and she deals with the consequences. When she comes home pregnant by Tam Lin, the elf knight who hides in the woods of Carterhaugh--

Out then spoke her father dear,And he spoke meek and mild,"And ever alas, sweet Janet," he says,"I think thou goes with child.""If that I go with child, father,Myself must bear the blame,There's not a lord about your hall,Shall get the baby's name."

And then she saves Tam Lin from being sacrificed as a tithe to Hell by means of (1) asking him for instructions, and (2) following them. Fairy tales and mythology are filled with stories of men and women who are told the one thing that they must do to save or keep their true loves, and then don't do it. Janet is told that the way to save Tam Lin is to hold him fast and fear him not while the fairies turn him into a bear, a lion, a snake, and a burning torch. And she does. She saves Tam Lin and takes him home to be her husband, while the terrifying Fairy Queen can only snarl about the awful things she would have done to Tam Lin if she had known what was going to happen.

2. Cruel Beauty is mainly based on Beauty and the Beast and Crimson Bound on Red Riding Hood. I know you never really liked Beauty and the Beast until you read 'East of the Sun, West of the Moon' and you fell in love with the idea of mixing it with Cupid and Psyche. How did you come up with the mash-up for Crimson Bound?
I discussed this issue in a lot more detail at the Midnight Garden Tour Stop, but briefly: I read an obscure variant of the story, where the wolf chops up the grandmother, puts her in a pot, and tricks Little Red Riding Hood into eating her flesh. To me, this seemed a lot more terrifying than the usual version of the story, because the wolf doesn't just want to eat the little girl--he wants to make her be like him. 

Then I read the fairy tale "The Girl With No Hands," where a miller promises his daughter to the Devil, but she manages to resist being carried off by him, though at the cost of her hands being chopped off. I was entranced by these two tales of girls who faced terrible supernatural evil that wanted to own them, and resisted or survived in opposite but equally terrible ways. And I wanted to write a story about two characters who were faced with that choice, and also made opposite choices.
Crimson Bound is that story.

3. What I loved about Cruel Beauty was Nyx. She wasn't a very likable character and she's so unique in comparison with most fairytale princesses. Can you tell us anything about Rachelle and Armand?
Rachelle is like Nyx in some ways: she's angry, she has a lot of guilt, she finds it difficult to be pleasant to people. But Nyx is ultimately a fairly intellectual heroine: her secret dream is to go to the University, her plans to defeat (and later save) Ignifex involve a lot of research, and she introspects about everything. Her main conflict is, "I feel these things I don't think I should be feeling."

Rachelle is barely literate and doesn't really care; she's much more interested in running around the city using her badass supernatural powers. She's impulsive, and while she broods a lot, she doesn't analyze herself much. And unlike Nyx, she's actively self-destructive sometimes--partly because her main conflict is, "I did something I know shouldn't have done. I killed somebody."

Armand is my favorite romantic lead that I've written so far. I don't want to say too much, so that readers can discover him along with Rachelle, but I'll say this: he's both snarky and idealistic, which are two of my favorite character traits.

4. Crimson Bound is a stand-alone novel like Cruel Beauty, but do you think there could ever be a sequel to them? Or are those stories told?
Probably not. All is fair in love and war and writing is kind of both, so no matter how often I say "no sequels" now, if I someday come up with a brilliant, devious plan for a whole series--I'll probably write them. But I really don't think that's likely. The world of Crimson Bound (like the world of Cruel Beauty), was specifically constructed to help tell one story; now the story is told, I don't see a lot more that I can do with that world.

(Besides, by the end of both those novels, I feel like the characters have suffered enough. They deserve to live happy, boring lives without enduring more trauma to delight readers.)
(Note: the tour does include 3 short stories set in the Crimson Bound world, however.)

5. What is your favorite quote from Crimson Bound?
I think it might be the very first words on the very first page: 

This story begins with endless night and infinite forest; with two orphaned children, and two swords made of broken bone.

It has not ended yet.

6. Oh yes,  I loved that openings sentence. Did you listen to specific music while writing Crimson Bound? Could you share a couple of songs?
Oh, yes! I have a playlist for each of my writing projects. (Sometimes I have several.) To name just a few of the songs that inspired Crimson Bound:

"A Demon's Fate" by Within Temptation -- obviously the perfect song for Rachelle's struggle against her inevitable doom.
"Iron" by Woodkid -- one of the best "oncoming apocalypse" songs that I've ever heard. (And check out the ominous, epic music video.)
"Little Talks" by Of Monsters and Men -- I consider this the theme song for Rachelle and Armand's relationship.

If you want to hear more songs that inspires Crimson Bound, you can listen to the full soundtrack at 8tracks.

7. Cruel Beauty is one of my favorite retellings and I can't wait to read Crimson Bound! Do you read many fairytales (and retellings) yourself? And if so, what are your favorites?
I do love reading fairy tales and retellings! I think my all-time favorite retelling is Winter Rose by Patricia McKillip. It's retelling of Tam Lin that is gorgeous, haunting, and luminous; I first read it when I was thirteen, and I suspect it's permanently shaped the way I write about magic. More recently, I very much enjoyed reading Enchanted by Heather Dixon, which is a delightful retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses; it felt like an old comfort-read on the first time through.

8. Enchanted (also known as Entwined) is indeed a fantastic retelling. Are you currently working on something new and could you perhaps tell us something about it?
Yes! Right now I am in the middle of revising my next book; it's the first of a two-book series that is based on Romeo and Juliet. I can't share a lot of details about it yet, but here are a few facts:

• There are necromancers. And zombies. No, Romeo and Juliet are not necromancers or zombies.
• Unlike Cruel Beauty and Crimson Bound, it is an ensemble book, with four main characters. Writing it has been really fun and really challenging.
• There are swords. And kissing. So it's not too different from my previous books.

Sounds awesome! Thanks Rosamund for all the lovely answers. It was great having you on my blog.

And now on to something else: Thanks to Harper Teen, we're giving away two prizes! The first prize is a bundle of Rosamund Hodge books, including hardback copies of CRIMSON BOUND and CRUEL BEAUTY, and the second prize is a giveaway for the fantastic audiobook narrated by Elizabeth Knowelden. Let us know in the comments which of the two you'd prefer, or if you're open to either one.

Open to U.S. and Canadian residents, see entry form for complete details.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Great interview!She sounds like a really cool person,and I love how she's done her research.
    I just bought Cruel Beauty a few days ago,and I am pretty excited to read it as Beauty and the Beast is my favourite fairy tale.
    Wonderful giveaway btw,I am just sad that I can't enter:(

  2. Wonderful interview, Mel! I loved Rosamund's answers! I haven't heard of Tam Lin until she mentioned Janet. Must check it out. Also, love that quote form Crimson Bound. I hope to get to read her books sometime!

  3. I can't believe I've never heard of Tam Lin yet, but Janet (apparently she isn't always named Janet int the different versions) sounds pretty kick-ass. And I love that both of her books are just stand-alones, and they're perfect that way already. :) And since Rosamund loved them, I'm adding both Winter Rose and Heather Dixon's book to my TBR. Ahh her next book sounds so exciting! Necromancers, Romeo and Juliet... I totally need it in my hands right now. ;)

    I can't wait for you to read Crimson Bound, Mel! I loved it myself. <33

    1. I have to agree with Entwined, it's a really good book.

  4. Necromancers and zombies?!! Count me in...

  5. Thanks for the giveaway! My favorite fairy tales are retold in her books. I can't wait for a new story based on Romeo and Juliet. :)

  6. I didn't know Crimson Bound and Cruel Beauty were standalones! That's nice to hear, as I've been caught up in SO many series and don't know how I'll finish them all. I could read this one without that pressure. It sounds so good!

    1. Stand-alones are such a breeze between all the series, huh :D?

  7. I love the interview. Cruel Beauty is so unique. I didn't read the book but I did listen to the audio book. I do also own a copy of the book as well. What I like about the interview is that author points out the difference of the story and the heroine. I can't wait for the audiobook on Crimson Bound.

  8. Such a fun interview!! Thanks for sharing! :D Would love to read some novels by Rosamund Hodge.

  9. This blog tour has been great so far, I loved this interview! I haven't read Crimson Beauty, but i have high expectations since i love B&tB and retellings. And Crimson Bound sounds super exciting!

  10. Gorgeous post Mel. <3 So glad you liked this book :) And yay for awesome interview with Rosamund :D She seems awesome. <3 So happy you got to be a part of this tour :) I was sad that I didn't, but then I'm really happy I didn't, because there is no way I'm reading this book, ever :p but oh, how it is beautiful. Thank you for sharing sweetie :)

  11. I love this Q&A! I am not familiar with Tam Lin ... and EEP a Romeo & Juliet inspired duology is coming??!! I CANNOT WAIT! <3


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