Title: The Strange and Deadly Portraits of Bryony Gray
Author: E. Latimer
Release Date: February 13th 2018
Publisher: Tundra Books (February 13, 2018)
Age Range: 10 and up
Grade Level: 5 and up
About The Strange and Deadly Portraits of Bryony Gray . . .
Lemony Snicket meets Oscar Wilde meets Edgar Allan Poe in this exciting and scary middle-grade novel inspired by The Picture of Dorian Gray — a family curse is unleased!
Bryony Gray is becoming famous as a painter in London art circles. But life isn’t so grand. Her uncle keeps her locked in the attic, forcing her to paint for his rich clients . . . and now her paintings are taking on a life of their own, and customers are going missing under mysterious circumstances.
When her newest painting escapes the canvas and rampages through the streets of London, Bryony digs into her family history, discovering some rather scandalous secrets her uncle has been keeping, including a deadly curse she’s inherited from her missing father. It turns out, Bryony has accidentally unleashed the Gray family curse, and it’s spreading fast.
With a little help from the strange-but-beautiful girl next door and her paranoid brother, Bryony sets out to break the curse, dodging bloodthirsty paintings, angry mobs and her wicked uncle along the way.
ARC Giveaway . . .
Winner of the advanced reader copy of The Strange and Deadly Portraits of Bryony Gray will be selected from people who RETWEET the post and TAG E. Latimer.
Some questions for E. Latimer . . .
What was your inspiration for writing The Strange and Deadly Portraits of Bryony Gray?
I have a very real love of all things 19th century London, and I already knew my middle grade voice is very much suited to that time period. I was grasping about for ideas of what to write next. I keep on my desk, a beautifully bound copy of the complete works of Oscar Wilde, and in that book was the story of Dorian Gray, which sparked my line of thinking:
What if Dorian secretly had a daughter? What if the curse hadn’t quite been broken in the end? Soon after that, Bryony Gray was born.
How did you get into writing?
I’ve been writing terrible stories for as long as I can remember. Since the moment I could hold a pencil properly, I imagine. Luckily, they’ve become less terrible over the years. At least, I think they have.
Were you inspired by other authors when you wrote Strange and Deadly Portraits?
There’s a rather wonderful description my publishers have put on the front of the blurb for the book, which is Lemony Snicket meets Oscar Wilde meets Edgar Allan Poe. They were all tremendous influences on this work. I also count Roald Dahl, Ellen Potter, Diana Wynne Jones and Enid Blyton as authors that very much played a part in influencing my voice and writing style.
What advice do you have for other debut authors, or people trying to get published?
For debut authors, do as much research as you can. But be prepared for bumps and surprises, you never fully know what you’re getting into. For writers striving to be published: keep on, you don’t fail until you give up. This business can take years to break into and it’s not for the faint of heart, but you will get there if you’re stubborn enough.
About E. Latimer . . .
E. LATIMER lives in Vancouver, Canada. Her breakout success on the online writing platform, Wattpad.com, has resulted in a fanbase of nearly 90k followers, with over 20 million combined reads. She also vlogs weekly on the YA Word Nerds Youtube channel and hosts chats on twitter. A former children’s bookseller, she is focusing on her writing, while still maintaining her Wattpad presence by hosting the Wattpad4 chats, which have featured guests like Lauren DeStefano, Leigh Bardugo, Beth Revis and Victoria Aveyard (among others). This is her first middle-grade novel.