Friday 31 July 2015

Blog Tour: Paige Toon's Research for I Knew You Were Trouble

I’m really pleased to welcome one of my favourite authors to the blog today, Paige Toon! The second book in her YA series, I Knew You Were Trouble, was released yesterday by S&S. Read on to find out about the research Paige does for her books.

Ever since my first book, Lucy in the Sky, I’ve liked to visit the places I’m writing about. It’s not always possible – in Chasing Daisy, my characters travel to every country on the Formula 1 circuit – so sometimes, internet research has to suffice. But when I have been able to walk in my characters’ shoes, see what they’ve seen and visit the places that they’ve visited, my writing definitely feels more alive. Or so my readers often tell me…

The Accidental Life of Jessie Jefferson and its sequel, I Knew You Were Trouble (out 30 July), are set partly in Maidenhead and partly in the far more glamorous locations of Los Angeles and San Francisco. Researching Maidenhead was easy – I went to secondary school there – but researching LA and San Fran… Well, that was fun. I first went to LA when I was writing my second book, Johnny Be Good, about a twenty-something girl called Meg who finds herself working as personal assistant to bad boy rock star Johnny Jefferson. The Jessie Jefferson series is a spin-off from this book and its sequel, Baby Be Mine, so it was easy to visualise Johnny’s teenage daughter Jessie’s surroundings.

I hope these research pictures help to bring the story to life for you…

1. This is Santa Monica beach and the fairground where Jessie goes with her half-brothers Barney and Phoenix on her first full day in LA. Johnny arranges for the rides to be closed to the public.

2. Here are the manicured gardens of Bel Air, home to lots of the rich and famous. Johnny and also Jessie’s new LA friend – TV star Charlotte Tremway – lives here. Picture Lottie’s legendary parties taking place behind those walls…

3. The Skybar at The Mondrian Hotel is one of Jack’s sister Agnes’s favourite hang-outs. When I went there, I thought the guy on the right looked a bit like Johnny from behind…

4. Here are the hazy lights of Downtown LA from up in the hills. Jessie sees this view every night from Johnny’s pad – and she’d also see it from the back of her dad’s motorbike.

5. The Golden Gate Bridge only looks this bright in colour when the sunlight hits it – and this is how Jessie saw it when she escaped to the beach with Jack on the morning after the All Hype concert in San Francisco…

6. Who can you spy out there on the waves? In I Knew You Were Trouble, Jessie thinks Jack kite-surfing is one of the coolest things she’s ever seen… The scenes that take place on this beach are some of my favourites in the entire book. I’d love to hear if it’s the same for you – so please tweet me @PaigeToonAuthor and let me know!

Note: For more research pics for all of my books, please visit my website

Thank you so much Paige! Don’t forget to pick up your copy of I Knew You Were Trouble and the re-covered The Accidental Life of Jessie Jefferson.


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