About the Author
Kristina Mahr devotes her days to numbers and her nights to words. She works full-time as an accountant in the suburbs of Chicago, where she lives with her two dogs and two cats, but her true passion is writing. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, reading, and waking up at the crack of dawn every weekend to watch the Premier League.
Every night, seventeen-year-old Reeve Lennox finds herself under a noose.
By day she is a lady of Acarsaid’s royal house, daydreaming of adventure and love. But every night in sleep she wanders through a nightmarish city, an invisible witness to the screeches of monsters and the screams of their victims. Her only consolation is Bran, a battle-torn young man with a selfless heart and eyes that reflect the stars.
Yet while Reeve falls deeper into her dreams, in truth she is engaged to Arden, a mercurial nobleman who has long been cured of his belief in love and breathes fire and flattery like other people breathe air.
Torn between two lives, Reeve struggles to remember what’s real. Until night and day collide, with a revelation that threatens all of Acarsaid.
Ten Things You Should Know
About Kristina Mahr
I usually don’t listen to music while writing because I’m one of those people who writes best in silence, but when I was on vacation with my family recently, I needed to put headphones in to quell the distractions. That’s when I discovered the song “Nuvole Bianche” by Ludovico Einaudi, and it is now my very favorite classical piece. It has so much emotion in it, and it could not have been a better song for the scene I was writing at the time.
2. What is the first thing you remember writing?
I wrote a story in elementary school for Young Authors about a trio of dogs living in the wild who are taken home by a woman who finds them. From there, it gets sketchy. One of the dogs dies, the others run away, more dogs appear from thin air, another dog dies… and then I guess they live out the rest of their lives in the mountains? The plot is very underdeveloped, and I regret killing off so many characters.
3. At what moment did you feel like you could say, "NOW, I'm an author?"
I still feel strange saying it! I’m so used to assigning myself the title of “accountant” because of my day job, that the “author” title still feels like it doesn’t quite fit. The closest I’ve probably come is the moment I saw the beautiful cover for All That We See or Seem, with my name right there on the bottom of it. It was a surreal moment.
4. Do you write using a keyboard, pen and paper, or both?
I am forever amazed by anyone who writes with pen and paper, because I live for my backspace button. I am one of those writers who is incapable of writing a messy first draft (waaay too much of a perfectionist!), so I can’t leave a scene behind unless I’m entirely happy with it. Which means I do a lot of editing as I write!
5. Have you always liked to write?
I don’t think I’ve always liked to write so much as I’ve always loved to read. Outside of my disastrous Young Authors stories, I didn’t really write growing up. I journaled, like any dramatic teenage girl, and always found it a good outlet, but that was about the extent of it until after college, when I really started playing around with fiction and fell completely and utterly in love with writing.
6. Do any of your characters look/sound like famous actors in your head?
Oh, all of them. I had a vision board up while I wrote with pictures of famous people who looked like my characters to me, and I stared at their faces all the time. It was really helpful, until I started marathoning Hart of Dixie on Netflix and all of a sudden Bran became Wade in my head. I had to consciously pull the Wade out of him, because Bran a) is not blonde and b) does not have a Southern accent.
7. Do you write/read every single day?
I do one or the other almost every day, but not every single day. Typically, every Sunday night, I look at the calendar at my week ahead and schedule out writing nights. I try to have two or three weekday evenings set aside to write, as well as a portion of the weekend. I fit reading time in around that, as well as time with my family and friends and time to do absolutely nothing. I know that I need a healthy balance of all of those things to be at my most productive, so I give myself breaks where necessary.
8. Do you have any furry writing buddies? (Or scaled or feathered?)
I have several furry writing buddies! My dogs, Finn and Penny, are always milling around or napping nearby while I write, and my cat Mia is always trying to wedge herself between me and my laptop. I have another cat, Rogue, but she typically just lurks up above on the loft half-wall, staring down at the rest of us. And I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention my newt, who I have had for just about 23 years now. I got him when I was very young, and nobody at the pet store warned me that I was making a lifelong commitment. He’s small, he hangs out in his tank all day, and he’s only on the second container of food I’ve had to buy in his lifetime. Low-maintenance pet!
9. Do you keep anything special on your desk when you write?
I have an hourglass, which is so much more satisfying to watch than the timer function of my phone. I try to do hour-long writing sprints, and the hourglass lets me glance up and see how much time has passed/how much time is left.
10. Who are your three favorite characters in your book(s)?
Let’s see, from All That We See or Seem… Reeve, first and foremost. She’s the main character and the narrator, so I know her best and love her most. I also love Arden. I CAN’T HELP IT. I know he’s trouble, pure and simple, but he’s so much fun to write. And, of course, Bran. I love that he is who he is, after everything he’s been through. He is the calm to Arden’s upheaval.