Interview & GIVEAWAY: Ruby's Fire (Fireseed #2) by Catherine Stine

Title: Ruby's Fire (Fireseed #2)
Author: Catherine Stine
Publisher: Konjur Road Press
Publication Date: June 26, 2013
Pages: 264
Genre: YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi
Source: ARC from Author

Summary (from the Author):  If everything about you changes, what remains?

Seventeen year-old Ruby, long-pledged to the much older Stiles from the Fireseed desert cult, escapes with only a change of clothes, a pouch of Oblivion Powder and her mute little brother, Thorn. Arriving at The Greening, a boarding school for orphaned teens, she can finally stop running. Or can she? The Greening is not what it seems. Students are rampaging out of control and as she cares for the secret Fireseed crop, she experiences frightening physical changes. She’s ashamed of her attraction to burly, hard-talking Blane, the resident bodyguard, and wonders why she can’t be happy with the gentler Armonk. She’s long considered her great beauty a liability, a thing she’s misused in order to survive. And how is she to stop her dependence on Oblivion to find a real beauty within, using her talent as a maker of salves, when she has nightmares of Stiles without it?

When George Axiom, wealthy mogul of Vegas-by-the-Sea offers a huge cash prize for the winner of a student contest, Ruby is hopeful she might collect the prize to rescue her family and friends from what she now knows is a dangerous cult. But when Stiles comes to reclaim her, and Thorn sickens after creating the most astonishing contest project of all, the world Ruby knows is changed forever. This romantic fantasy set in 2099 on earth has a crafty heroine in Ruby, and a swoonworthy cast, which will surely appeal to the YA and new adult audience.

Thank you for being a guest at The Indigo Quill!

Please explain the title for your book.
Ruby’s Fire is the second in the Fireseed series, so I wanted to include the word “fire” in the title. Ruby is a fiery, passionate heroine, and her perilous, high-stakes journey to Skulls’ Wrath and The Greening boarding school is metaphorically as well as literally on fire. Also, her relationship with the almost magical Fireseed plant has a shocking, transforming twist for Ruby.

Who or what has inspired your style of writing?
Oh, wow, hard to narrow it to one or two books or authors. In sixth grade, I discovered sci-fi and I fell totally in love with Ray Bradbury, George Orwell, and before that The Narnia Chronicles. I have a very active imagination, and there’s nothing more exciting than to craft new worlds, settings, inventions.

What inspired the whole setting for Ruby’s Fire—temperature, location, etc.?
In Fireseed One, the first in the series, we learn that the west has endured years of drought, and has become a vast wasteland. The temperature's risen to 160%. California (sorry Cali dwellers!) has fallen into the ocean in a catastrophic earthquake. Now Vegas is a wild coastal city, and is renamed Vegas-by-the-Sea.
Those with money have moved north. In a previous war between north and south, called the Border Wars, the north has won and has built a robotic border wall on what is now the border between Canada and the US. The folks south of it, now climate refugees, are trapped in what is referred to as the Hotzone. Transgenic crops are developed in the north, and shipped south to help feed the starving. Fireseed is the most magical of these crops, and an entire cult has formed in the desert that worships this plant.
At the start of Ruby's Fire, she escapes this dangerous cult, for reasons you'll find when you read the novel. The world is slowly, slowly recovering, and Vegas-by-the-Sea is actually becoming a boomtown. (Thus I consider the series POST-dystopia)

How long have you been writing? Please tell us a little bit about your journey.
I wrote my first serious story, a 25-page fantasy, in sixth grade, and my teacher made Xerox copies for all of my classmates. That was quite flattering and motivating. I tried writing picture books first because I am also an illustrator, but ironically my first contract was for a middle grade novel (work for hire with American Girl) that had no pictures!

Did you find it difficult to create a futuristic book since you had to create everything from scratch?
No! I love to imagine scenarios, characters and worlds. I think it’s one of my strengths—feeding my vision. I do it through a combination of research and asking “what if?” over and over until it all falls into place.

If you could be any character from this book, which one would you be?
Ruby. She gets the hot guy, and gets to concoct really cool elixirs that do amazing things. She also goes through quite a scary transformation, which I can’t reveal here. But it’s worth it for her.

In three words, how would you describe Ruby’s Fire?
Perilous, romantic, rollercoaster-ish.

Do you see yourself writing more books in the future?
Yes. I may write one more in the Fireseed series that takes place in Vegas-by-the-Sea in Ruby’s dream house: a wave colored house by the sea, with her brother, her friends and her love. Should I?

Do you have any favorite authors?
Nancy Werlin, Cherie Priest, Ray Bradbury, Denis Johnson… and so many more.

Lastly, what would you like your readers to know before reading your book?
I give you total permission to fall in love with the characters, even though they’re sometimes quite wicked. Look forward to a sizzling romance. And know that Ruby takes special care of her little brother, Thorn, who’s had the words beaten out of him.

Thank you so much for your time. It has been a true pleasure having you as a guest and I wish you the best of luck on your future writing endeavors!

Thanks for having me! I enjoyed it,
Catherine Stine

Catherine Stine writes YA, New Adult and middle grade fiction. Her YA futuristic thriller, Fireseed One, illustrated by the author won finalist spots in both YA and Science Fiction in the 2013 USA Book News International Book Awards. It was also granted a 2013 Bronze Wishing Shelf Book Award and a 2013 Indie Reader Approved notable stamp. Her YA Refugees, earned a New York Public Library Best Book. Middle grade novels include A Girl’s Best Friend. 

Fireseed One sequel, Ruby’s Fire is earning advance praise from reviewers and authors:
“Ruby's Fire, returns to the sun-scorched earth of Fireseed One. In this long-awaited sequel, Stine delivers a thrilling adventure led by a new and exciting cast of characters. Ruby, Armonk, Thorn and Blane are memorable, and the romance is really well handled. Favorite quote: " It feels wrong to lean on Armonk right now with Blane staring at me, a hungry, lonely look in his eye. It’s as if he’s never been hugged, never been fed, never been loved..." ”  -YAs the Word

More and more, Catherine enjoys writing speculative tales where her imagination has wild and free reign. She has taught creative writing workshops at the Philadelphia Writing Conference, Missouri University Summer Abroad, The New School and in her own ongoing NYC writing workshop. She loves her readers, and enjoys blogging.
The author is offering many great prizes for this giveaway, including a KINDLE and $40 Amazon Gift Card! Be sure to enter and share!


  1. Thanks for sharing Ruby's Fire and the giveaway. Sounds like a great book. evamillien at gmail dot com

  2. I like sci-fi that's not too over the top, still leaving room for humanity to get things wrong! This sounds like a cool book!