The best-selling and award- winning author of the Shatter Me and Furthermore series (and half of our ultimate literary OTP with Ransom Riggs!) spills on Restore Me, the highly anticipated continuation of Juliette and Warner’s story.
Remember the book hangover we all had after turning the last page of Ignite Me? Well, buckle up for more nailbiting, swoonworthy awesomeness, because Tahereh Mafi has not one, but three new books confirmed in this world! In Restore Me, which picks up two weeks after Ignite Me ends, we reunite with Juliette, now the Supreme Commander of Sector 45, with Warner at her side. Because what we thought was the end…was only the beginning.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO REVISIT THE SHATTER ME SERIES WITH A NEW THREE-BOOK SERIES FOR JULIETTE AND WARNER?
I’d been talking to the screenwriter for the possible Shatter Me TV show, and when he asked me a question about one of the characters, I totally blanked. It had been years since I’d reread the books, and I realized then that I needed to refresh my memory. But the time and distance I’d had between finishing the third book and rereading the entire series allowed me to see that the story was still unfinished. I was so certain, when I finished Ignite Me, that I was done with these characters, but when I closed the book I realized that Juliette’s emotional journey wasn’t done yet, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It was suddenly very clear to me what needed to happen next.
RESTORE ME IS TOLD IN BOTH JULIETTE’S AND WARNER’S POINTS OF VIEW. WHY THE CHANGE?
My reasons for this are two:
FIRST: In the first three books, Juliette’s interior state dictates how the story is told; when she’s feeling unstable, so too is the writing. When she’s confident, the writing is, too. You can watch her progress as a person by following the language changes in the first three books; by the end of the series, for example, the strikethroughs have disappeared, and the prose is much calmer—steadier. The next three books will follow this same format, but it was important for me that readers understood that these language choices/fluctuations were intentional. Warner’s very cold, spare voice provides a nice contrast to Juliette’s inner turbulence. It’s almost like a palate cleanser at the end of each chapter.
SECOND: I often struggled to find ways to talk about the world—and what it looked like—through the first-person present POV of a girl who was always in isolation, on the run, or in hiding. Warner’s perspective allowed me to break out of that in a way that was truly liberating. He knows a great deal about The Reestablishment, its history, and the shape of their present world. It was nice to be able to mine his mind for information.
I THINK WE SPEAK FOR EVERYONE WHEN WE SAY WE’RE 100% IN FAVOR OF MORE WARNER! AND ALONG THAT LINE, WHAT DO YOU THINK MAKES FOR A GREAT RELATIONSHIP IN YA? AND SINCE THIS ISSUE COMES OUT NEAR VALENTINE’S DAY, HOW ABOUT IN REAL LIFE?
I think it’s possible to build all kinds of great relationships in YA; some turbulent, some stable. But there’s more leeway in fiction; there’s so much drama and somehow [some of] these relationships still survive! In fiction, drama makes for great storytelling. But in real life, I prefer my relationships drama-free. I’m here for the simple things—trust, respect, and kindness. True partnership.
AND FINALLY, WHO DOES THAT GORGEOUS GREEN EYE BELONG TO ON THE COVER OF RESTORE ME . . . CURIOUS MINDS WANT TO KNOW!
It’s Warner’s eye color! (It’s not meant to be his actual eye, of course, but the color is meant to be symbolic. All of it is.)