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Eve Marie Mont

 “I write because I cannot NOT write.”
~ Charlotte Brontë

As a child, Eve was a tomboy/animal lover/aspiring actress who staged lip-synched productions of her favorite musicals since she couldn’t sing. Her love for athletics and animals remained, but the acting bug was soon replaced by the writing bug. In fourth grade, she wrote her first chapter book entitled, The Only Tomboy in My Class, and she was hooked.

Now Eve teaches high school English and Creative Writing in the Philadelphia suburbs and sponsors her school’s literary magazine. When not grading papers or writing, Eve can be found getting inspired by the The Food Network, playing with her shelter pup, or daydreaming about her next story.

1. What inspired you to write A Breath of Eyre?
Ever since I read Jane Eyre in high school, it has been my favorite book. It has all the elements I look for in a novel: fantastic writing, a beautiful and fully-realized setting, a complex love story, a highly relatable protagonist, and most of all, a compelling journey to send her on. Jane is the ultimate heroine: strong, intelligent, moral, and not afraid to speak her mind. I knew I wanted my protagonist, Emma, to step into her shoes as she awakens to first love and discovers her own strength of character. Besides, who wouldn’t want to get lost, literally, in her favorite book?
2. Who is your fictional crush?
I fell in love with Edward Rochester in my junior year of high school, and I’ve never gotten over it. Now, all these years later, I still love him almost in spite of myself. Because I shouldn’t love Rochester—he’s dark, arrogant, moody, and he’s made a few mistakes in his life that are seriously hard to overlook. But ultimately that’s the allure of Rochester. He’s bad, but he’s not beyond redemption. Every time I read those long passages between Jane and Edward and watch their relationship change from master-employee to star-crossed soul mates, I am swept up in the romance of it all over again. Despite his flaws, I find myself rooting for Rochester, hoping he’ll get his act together and praying that Jane will forgive him and give us all the happy ending we’re longing for.
3. Why do you like writing YA literature?
In some ways, I still feel like a teenager myself—insecure and hopeful and edgy, sometimes all within the same day. I teach high school, and the teens I know are a far cry from the ones portrayed in the media. They are smart and compassionate and ambitious and concerned about the world. Because their lives are so fraught with confusion and angst, the YA genre often seeks to capture that emotional turmoil through magical and paranormal elements. It’s that sense of wonder and possibility in YA literature that really excites me, the feeling that anything can happen.
4. What book would you want to be sucked into?
I’d love to visit Middle Earth and Hogwarts, but I think I could live in the turn-of-the-century Paris depicted in The Phantom of the Opera or the 1920’s New York of The Great Gatsby!
5. Aside from Jane Eyre, what are your favorite classic books?
Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden, C.S. Lewis’s The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, A.S. Byatt’s Possession, and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.
6. Any YA series that you’d highly recommend?
Lesley Livingston’s Wondrous Strange series, Libba Bray’s Gemma Doyle trilogy, Cynthia Hand’s Unearthly series, Kelly Creagh’s Nevermore trilogy, Ally Condie’s Matched trilogy, and Stephanie Perkins’ Anna and the French Kiss (not really a series but it has two companion novels).
7. Is A Breath of Eyre part of a series?
Yes! In each book, Emma will get transported into a classic novel: Jane Eyre in Book I, The Scarlet Letter in Book II, and The Phantom of the Opera in Book III.

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