Today I have the immense pleasure of kicking off the Before I Wake by Rachel Vincent Blog Tour! Before I Wake is the sixth book in the Soul Screamers series, and I am unbelievably excited to say Kaylee Cavanuagh, our bean sidhe protagonist, took time out from kicking hellion butt to answer some questions for us today! Read on for a seriously awesome interview - even if I do say so myself!
WARNING! This interview is chock full of MAJOR spoilers for If I Die! DO NOT read any further if you've yet to read If I Die and don't want it spoilt for you!
When we last saw you, Kaylee, you were killed at the hands of an incubus, and then restored as an undead to work for the Reclamation Department. How does it feel to be no longer living?
It’s weird. Everything feels different now. It turns out that when you’re dead, staying visible to the rest of the world is hard. It takes a lot of practice and concentration, and I tend to zone out a lot these days, so I’m kind of afraid I’m just going to, like, fade out in the middle of a class, or something. That’d be bad. And virtually impossible to explain to the rest of the class. I may have to start sitting at the back of the room.
Also, most of the stuff going on in the human world—my former world—doesn’t feel incredibly relevant to me anymore, and I know that should worry me. Everyone seems to think that means my humanity is slipping away, and they’re probably right, but when you’re the only one awake at three in the morning, and you’re not sleepy, and there’s no one to talk to and nothing to do, day after day, it gets kinda hard to care about…well, anything.
I was hoping my new job would help with that, but so far…not so much. There’s a lot of hurry-up-and-wait. Do you guys have that expression in the UK? They resurrected me to handle a specific job—an emergency—but it turns out there’s a lot of waiting around for the emergency to…um…show itself. And when there’s nothing to hold my attention, I tend to kind of…disappear. Which really freaks my dad out.
That's got to be tough. Speaking of, what does your job as an extractor entail? Despite the fact that it was a choice between either becoming an undead extractor or dying completely, do you think it’s a worth while job?
I think it’s an important job. Basically, I’m one of very few people in the world granted an afterlife in exchange for the task of reclaiming stolen souls from those who shouldn’t have them. Sometimes that’s a rogue reaper, or whoever s/he sold the soul in question to. Sometimes its an incubus—their version of the nesting human mothers sometimes do when they’re pregnant is to buy or steal a blackmarket soul for their unborn child, who’ll die without it. And sometimes the target is more dangerous than reapers and incubi…
Oooh, sounds ominous! As you were dying, Tod refused to reap your soul and forfeited his afterlife. When Madeline, your boss, and Levi brought you back to offer you the position as an extractor, you bargained for Tod to be given his afterlife back. It’s obvious neither of you can be without the other. How is your relationship now you’ve both been restored?
*blushes* It’s kind of intense. And very comfortable. Tod still fits me, when everything in the human world suddenly feels…awkward. Like jeans you’ve outgrown. He’s the only person I know who truly understands what I’m going through. What it’s like to be recently deceased, trying to decide where—and whether—you fit in with the human world.
Also, he’s beautiful. Did I mention the guy-beauty? Cause he totally has it. Which is why it’s hilarious to stand back and watch when people meet him for the first time—though that rarely happens. He’s not big on visibility. But anyway, when people meet him, they expect him to be very polite and kind of old-world courtly, because he’s so beautiful. Then he opens his mouth and says something outrageous, and there’s this awesome moment of silence while they realize he’s this amazing octagonal peg and they can’t shove him into their pre-conceived round hole. He’s his own person, and he’s totally chivalrous, but in his own way. In the Tod-way.
I like the Tod-way. ;)
That was probably more than you wanted to hear, though, right…?
Oh, when it comes to Tod, I'm more than happy to hear almost anything! Your death came with a number of consequences, one of which was Nash being framed with and then cleared of your murder. That, on top of you cheating on him with his brother, can’t be doing much for your friendship with him. How’s that going? Do you think things will get better between you two?
Nash is… wow. Um. About the cheating. That’s a really strong word. It’s not entirely inaccurate, but maybe it’s not the best descriptor. I kissed Tod. That’s what happened. I regret the timing more than you can possibly imagine, but I don’t regret the kiss. I can’t. It’s one of the best things I’ve ever done. But if I could re-do it, I wouldn’t kiss Tod while I was still with Nash.
Nash has had a really hard road recently, and I feel so bad about my part in what went wrong for him. I wish I could explain what happened the night I died. I wish I could tell him why I did what I did, and that I had no choice, but he’s not talking to me right now. Soon, maybe…
I do hope so! The Kaylee I’m interviewing is a very different Kaylee to the girl who found out she was a bean sidhe seven months ago. Other than the obvious lack of a pulse (unless you will it), how have you changed and grown? And what will these changes mean for the serial soul thief who’s just hit town?
How have I changed? I think I’m wiser now. Or at least, I’m less naïve. I’ve made mistakes, and I hope I’ve learned from them. I’ve had to make tough choices, and I’m still not sure I always made the right one. And sometimes there is no right choice. Sometimes all the choices are bad, but you still have to make one. Realizing that—experiencing it for yourself and having to live (or not-live) with the consequences—changes you.
Also, coming face-to-face with true evil has kind of put life’s minor annoyances in perspective. I mean, putting up with a spoiled and snotty cousin doesn’t seem like such a big deal when you’ve seen people die, for no reason other than to amuse a hellion.
Thank you, Kaylee, for stopping by to answer some questions! I’ll now let you get back to kicking soul thief butt, or hanging out with Tod.
Wow, what an interview, huh? Bet you're just itching to pick up Before I Wake now, eh? Well it's your lucky day, because Before I Wake is released today in the UK! If you need any more convincing that you need Before I Wake in your life, you can read my rave review here. So what are you waiting for?! Get yourself a copy now!
Rachel Vincent is currently re-writing With All My Soul, the seventh and final novel in the Soul Screamers series, due out next year.