Interview with Kristina Pérez, author of SWEET BLACK WAVES

I am thrilled to introduce my friend and fellow Class of 2k18 author, Kristina Pérez. I absolutely adored her debut novel, Sweet Black Waves, and I know all of you will love it as well. 

Kristina Pérez is a half-Argentine/half-Norwegian native New Yorker. She has spent the past two decades working as a journalist and academic in Europe and Asia. She is the author of The Myth of Morgan la Fey and holds a PhD in Medieval Literature from the University of Cambridge. Sweet Black Waves is her debut young adult novel.

SWEET BLACK WAVES is the first in a YA fantasy trilogy retelling of Tristan and Iseult that shines a light on the legend’s true heroine––the princess’s cousin, Branwen––and her ancient healing magic, pitched as Graceling meets Mists of Avalon.

Find her on the web:


Twitter: @kkperezbooks

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Facebook: KKPerezBooks

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Goodreads: Kristina Pérez

Talk about one book that made an impact on you.

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi had a huge impact on me as a middle schooler. Set during the 1830s, thirteen-year-old Charlotte has been raised to be a proper, upper-class English lady until a fateful sea voyage where she has all of her assumptions about class, race, and gender turned upside down. Charlotte begins to question the power structures of the society in which she’s been raised and eventually takes part in a mutiny on a tyrannical captain. By the end of the novel, Charlotte rejects her family’s expectations of how she should live her life and literally becomes the captain of her own ship. The message of self-determination was incredibly powerful and influential on middle school me. The strength to resist what you know in your heart to be wrong––even when the world around you says it’s right––to think for yourself, and to have the courage of your convictions remains as vitally important to me today as it was thirty years ago.

If you were a drink (preferably alcoholic), what would you be and why?

I’d have to go with a Gin Fizz. I am a craft gin geek so I can get very boring about botanicals and proper tonics. In terms of my personality, I think the combination of sugar syrup and lemon juice is probably fairly accurate! I’m bubbly and salty.

What three things would you want with you if stranded on a desert island?

A pen (with ink that magically never runs out), a notebook (with infinite pages), and an iPod shuffle (with eternal battery life). I always draft my books by hand first, and I absolutely have to listen to music while writing, so I think with those three items, I could entertain myself pretty well. But could I also get a Gin Fizz, please?

What time of day do you love best?

Twilight. In particular the moment right after the sun has dipped below the horizon––the stillness of night descending as hot pink fades to lavender, then black. There is a certain peace for me in knowing the day is done.

Which talent do you wish you had?

I would love to be able to draw. I’ve never been able to manage much more than stick figures. Art was my worst subject in school and it always frustrated me that I couldn’t translate the images I saw in my mind onto the page. But now I get to do that in my writing, I guess!

Author: Kaitlyn Sage Patterson

Kaitlyn Sage Patterson grew up with her nose in a book outside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. After completing her M.F.A., she moved to South Korea, where she taught English and started writing her debut novel. THE DIMINISHED will be published by HarlequinTEEN in April 2018, followed by its sequel in 2019. When she's not staring off into space and trying to untangle some particularly troublesome plot point, she can be found in her kitchen, perfecting the most difficult recipe she can find; or at the barn, where she rides and trains dressage horses; or with her husband, spoiling their sweet rescue dogs.