Author Interview & Giveaway: Martina Boone

We're excited to welcome the author of Compulsion, Martina Boone, to Reading Lark today. She's here to answer a few questions and give our readers a chance to win an awesome prize pack.

Paula @ Reading Lark: I always wonder what authors were like when they were children. Were you the kid in school who was always telling stories, or did writing come to you later? 

Martina: I was the kid who was always reading. Literally. I would have books open inside my textbooks in class, I read under the covers with a book light or flashlight until my parents when to bed, then I turned the light back on. I went to the library three or four times a week. As for telling stories? Oh, yeah. And half the time I believed them. I was also the kid who turned Edgar Alan Poe into ghost stories at girl scout camp. You haven’t lived until you’ve scared the crap out of twelve-year-olds by telling them "The Pit and the Pendulum," "The Fall of the House of Usher,” or “The Tell-Tale Heart." 

Paula @ Reading Lark: What’s the last book you read and loved? 

Martina: I just finished AFTERWORLDS by Scott Westerfeld. If I say it is very meta is that too much of a cliche? I loved it, and after reading it, I was even more floored that I got to kick off my first book signing by loaning Scott my pen. : ) 

Paula @ Reading Lark: If Compulsion was a dessert, what would it be? 

Martina: Chocolate whoopie pies. Frothy, layered, and over-the-top, with a solid dose of decadence and darkness. 

Paula @ Reading Lark: Barrie's childhood was anything but typical; the two important adults in her life were pretty unusual. Was that decision story-driven, or an author decision to represent some diversity? 

Martina: Mark is an African American ex-drag queen. I honestly don’t know how that happened. He popped in my head and took up residence, but he was originally only meant to have a bit part at the beginning of the book, and then that part sort of grew and grew. He definitely wasn’t any sort of active decision, about diversity or otherwise, but I’m happy to be able to include some diversity in the story. At the same time, I will say that the fact that he is African American was important to me as I wrote, because it affected what it was like for Barrie to arrive at her family’s plantation and encounter this very different world. You’ll see that more in book two than in book one, but it’s there in her makeup because of Mark’s love and influence. 

Paula @ Reading Lark: I loved that Barrie and Eight are equally attracted to and aggravated by each other. Is there a relationship that you used as a model? 

Martina: I love the delicious banter in old films, and I wanted to bring that mix of attraction and aggravation to a sent of teen characters. It was the tension I was looking for originally, but at the same time, as I started to write them, they couldn’t have come out any other way. Imagine not believing in “instalove” — at all — but having a gift for finding lost things that pulls you to your missing half? And when you add in the fact that the guy knows what you want before you know it yourself—and he’s constantly telling you what you want? Um. That’s a recipe for aggravation. On the other hand, he’s Eight. There aren’t many girls who wouldn’t cut him a little slack. : ) 

Paula @ Reading Lark: Compulsion has a lot of dramatic and/or creepy scenes. Which scene, on the other hand, was the most fun to write? 

Martina: The beach scene after Cassie's outdoor performance of Gone with the Wind. I love that scene so much! 

Paula @ Reading Lark: It's tradition for us to ask: what is your favorite bird? 

Martina: We have a blue heron we call Seven O’clock Charlie, because he flies over my flowerbed at about the same time every day. I love him. But I’d have to say my favorite birds are the bald eagles I see outside my windows several times a week. It’s always a good day when I see them soaring overhead.

About The Author

Martina Boone was born in Prague and spoke several languages before 
learning English. She fell in love with words and never stopped delighting in them.

She’s the founder of, a Writer’s Digest 101 Best Websites for Writers site, and, a site devoted to encouraging literacy and all things YA Series.

From her home in Virginia, where she lives with her husband, children, and Auggie the wonder dog, she enjoys writing contemporary fantasy set in the kinds of magical places she’d love to visit. When she isn’t writing, she’s addicted to travel, horses, skiing, chocolate flavored tea, and anything with
Nutella on it. 

About the Novel

Three plantations. Two wishes. One ancient curse.

All her life, Barrie Watson has been a virtual prisoner in the house where she lives with her shut-in mother. When her mother dies, Barrie promises to put some mileage on her stiletto heels. But she finds a new kind of prison at her aunt’s South Carolina plantation instead--a prison guarded by an ancient spirit who long ago cursed one of the three founding families of Watson Island and gave the others magical gifts that became compulsions.

Stuck with the ghosts of a generations-old feud and hunted by forces she cannot see, Barrie must find a way to break free of the family legacy. With the help of sun-kissed Eight Beaufort, who knows what Barrie wants before she knows herself, the last Watson heir starts to unravel her family's twisted secrets. What she finds is dangerous: a love she never expected, a river that turns to fire at midnight, a gorgeous cousin who isn’t what she seems, and very real enemies who want both Eight and Barrie dead.

"Darkly romantic and steeped in Southern Gothic charm, you'll be compelled to get lost in the Heirs of Watson Island series." -- #1 New York Times Bestselling Author Jennifer L. Armentrout

"A fresh twist on the Southern Gothic — haunting, atmospheric, and absorbing.” -- Claudia Gray, New York Times bestselling author of A THOUSAND PIECES OF YOU and the Evernight and Spellcaster series

"Compulsion is a stunningly magical debut with a delicious slow burn to be savored. I want to live in this story world!" -- Wendy Higgins, USA Today and NYT bestselling author of the Sweet Evil Trilogy from HarperTeen

"A star-crossed romance, lush gothic plantations, and an island full of intrigue--COMPULSION was a heart-pounding race to the finish! A thrilling debut!" -- Kimberly Derting, author of The Body Finder series

"Beautifully written, with vivid characters, a generations-old feud, and romance that leaps off the page, this Southern ghost story left me lingering over every word, and yet wanting to race to the compelling finish. Martina Boone's COMPULSION is not to be missed." -- Megan Shepherd, Author of THE MADMAN'S DAUGHTER

"Martina Boone's COMPULSION is the perfect southern family saga, charming and steamy on the surface, with cold-blooded secrets buried down deep. What more do you want? More time to read it, that's what." -- Kendare Blake, author of ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD and ANTIGODESS

"A shivery, delicious Southern Gothic with feuding families, dark spirits, ancient curses... and caught up in the middle, a young girl learning to live and love for the first time. Atmospheric and suspenseful, Compulsion will draw you in and hold you until the very last page." -- Leah Cypess, Author of DEATH SWORN

"Ancient spirits, mystery, and Southern charm--COMPULSION mixes dark magic with darker family secrets in a way that'll make you relieved there are two more books. I can't wait to continue reading about Barrie and the rest of Watson island!" -- Kat Zhang, Author of WHAT'S LEFT OF ME


Pre-order Compulsion 

Signed copies are available for pre-order from One More Page Books. You can also pre-order 

with the special “I have a Compulsion for reading” bookplate from Eight Cousins


  1. COMPULSION sounds fabulous! Can't wait to read it!

  2. I have been waiting for this book to come out for a long time!


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