Monday, November 20, 2017

HERE SKIES SURROUND US: character interview with Nat

Today I’m going to be interviewing Nat.  She’s the main character in Melanie McFarlanes  new release, HERE SKIES SURROUND US.

Nat, how about if you describe yourself for us?
I’m just an average girl, like anyone else who lives in Dome 1618. I’ve got dark hair, and wear the standard clothing we’re assigned when we leave the Learning Institute. But since I’ve moved out of the dome, I can’t help but wonder what things I might change about myself!

What’s your profession?
My last job was in the Axis, working in the Expedition Division. But now that we’ve started to develop the Outer Colony, I’ve been helping dig the trench to the river. It’s definitely not my dream job, but even my old roommate Tassie is helping out, and she’s a trained biologist!

Do you have a special skill?
I feel like I haven’t had a chance to find my place yet. My best friend Xara always knew she’d go work at the Archives with her mother. My other friend Jak always knew he wanted to work for the Director. But me, I’ve always been a little lost. I was lucky to join the expedition team a month ago, following in the steps of my parents before they passed away. But now that we’re on the outside, the team has been dismantled. I don’t know what’s in store for me now…

What is your biggest dream/wish/desire?
I wish those who refuse to leave the dome would try to understand that the outside is where we’re meant to be. I know people like my grandmother are afraid of everything they’ve known their entire lives, disappearing overnight. But we were never meant to be locked up inside that dome for so long. And the mistrust of the outside is starting to wear on people. I just hope that no one does anything stupid.

What’s your darkest secret?
There used to be a clearing in the Outer Forest, where I’d run to and hide inside the
dome. Now there’s new saplings planted there, but before the horticulturalists found it, there was a hollow tree I’d curl up inside, and dream about what life would be like on the outside. I miss that tree, but I guess now I’ve got the entire world to explore.

What’s your favorite pastime/hobby?
Ever since I was little I’ve liked to go running. Growing up inside the dome, running was the only way I could ever feel free. I guess that’s something I’m not ready to give up, even though I’ve moved to the outside now. It will take a long time to truly feel free.

Describe the craziest thing you have done.
Joining the rebellion. I was never raised to be the kind of girl who could speak up for herself, let alone speak against an entire government. My grandmother has definitely still not forgiven me, even though everything I stood up for came to be the truth!

Sneaker, flip-flops, or spikes:
Sneakers! I’m not sure what flip-flops or spikes are, but I bet my best friend Xara would! She’s always teaching me old terminology from the world before the Cleansing Wars wiped everything out.

Chunky peanut butter or smooth?
Ah! Another thing I’ve never heard of before. I will definitely have to find out what this peanut butter is, and why it comes in chunky and smooth!

Favorite fictional character?
I wish I had access to the Archives so I could read a fiction novel! We learned about them at the Learning Institute, but they were deemed unnecessary to survival inside the dome.

Thank you Nat for stopping by.


As Dome 1618 begins to colonize, a sharp divide separates those who chose to live inside the dome and those that seek freedom on the outside. When the colony is attacked, Nat escapes with Evan to his home, Dome 569, a progressive dome that colonized on the outside over a decade ago. But there are many rules in Dome 569--some that come with deadly consequences if broken. Dome leader, Caroline, is not impressed that Evan failed to destroy Dome 1618 to eradicate the virus--a violation of a direct order. Nate uncovers secrets of Dome 569 that could tear down the world Caroline has sacrificed to protect, forcing Evan to choose between her and the only home he's ever known. Is Nat willing to sacrifice her morals and values in exchange for freedom, or will she die fighting for what she believes in? 

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Melanie McFarlane is a passionate writer of other-worldly adventures, a little excitable, and a little quirky. Whether it's uncovering the corruption of the future, or traveling to other worlds to save the universe, she jumps in with both hands on her keyboard. Though she can be found obsessing over zombies and orcs from time to time, Melanie has focused her powers on her YA debut THERE ONCE WERE STARS, and her YA urban fantasy SUMMONER RISING. 

She lives with her husband and two daughters in the Land of Living Skies. 

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