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Texas Debut Authors: Mary Gray, author of The Dollhouse Asylum

On Thursday, May 9th, 6 super fab debut authors from the DFW area will be appearing at my library branch, Betty Warmack Branch Library (6:00 PM, be there!)  Today I am excited to introduce you to another one of those upcoming authors, Mary Gray.

Hello, Mary. THE DOLLHOUSE ASYLUM is a great title. Can you tell us how it became your book’s name?
When my former agent, Kat Salazar, submitted my book to publishers, the original title was MY FRAGILITY, but as my editor pointed out, that title wasn’t something concrete, something readers would know what it means. So we texted back and forth, brainstorming ideas for a title, wanting the perfect name to go up with my Publishers Marketplace listing. We knew the book had to have the word “asylum” because of the dual nature of the word (asylum from the monsters, and also crazy place). So when my editor asked her roommate if he had any ideas, she explained how we needed to convey the word “fragile.” He said “dollhouse” and everything just clicked, because Danielle went to my manuscript and realized I’d alluded to everyone as dolls all along. Then in the rewrites, I just brought out that aspect more. It really became perfect.
Would you be so kind as to describe THE DOLLHOUSE ASYLUM in five words?

·         Desperate
·         Brutal
·         Fast-paced
·         Romantic
·         Obsessive
Can you please share one quote with us?
I can, because it’s editor-approved!
“I used to pride myself on not letting others change me, but Teo knew how to burrow inside my heart and squeeze. Around him, I’m this pathetic, whimpering child. Fragile. Breakable. Like I’m obsessed with what he thinks. Not because our lives are on the line, but because seeking Teo’s approval has become this sick goal. And I’ve lived this way for so many months, it’s like I need to be rewired. The problem is that I don’t know if I can be.”
When can readers pick up your book?
I will have ARCs at BEA! My cover artist, the fabulous Jeremy West, will be signing with me (come see us!) or you know, October 22ndis my official release date.
Can you describe your protagonist in 140 characters?

She has a quiet power, and possesses a loyal, fierce love to a fault. She loves classic romances, and can get swept away into romantic gestures, yet has the punch of a contemporary voice.
If you could encourage anyone to pick up Dollhouse Asylum when it releases in fall 2013, what would you say?

A terrifying question! I want to answer it right! I suppose I would say it’s my heart ripped open and spilled on the page. The terror and misguided allegiance is something I’ve felt very real in my life. It’s fast paced, with a few kissing scenes I’m not so sure my mother would like, but it made get friendly with my husband, so that’s good, right?
What is your favorite genre and why?
Dark YA! Or at least YA that isn’t light. My favorite authors all tell haunting or broody tales: Neal Shusterman’s UNWIND, R.L. LaFever’s GRAVE MERCY and DARK TRIUMPH, and Carrie Ryan’s THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH. I look for sweeping prose with a chilling plot, something that makes me turn page after page even after I should sleep. Something that makes my heart pound in my chest, and deep, unique feeling love. That’s what I like. 🙂
Is THE DOLLHOUSEASYLUM available for preorder?
Why, yes! Barnes & Noble and Amazon both have it available for preorder.
 Mary Gray has a fascination with all things creepy. That’s why all her favorite stories usually involve panic attacks and hyperventilating. In real life, she prefers to type away on her computer, ogle over her favorite TV shows, and savor fiction. When she’s not immersed in other worlds, she and her husband get their exercise by chasing after their three children. The Dollhouse Asylum is her first novel. 
Full disclosure: This is the personal blog of Karen Jensen, I just sometimes use it to promote events at my library.


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  3. This book sounds great. I'm into dark YA as well. This is going straight on my goodreads, to read, list.

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