Author Interview + Reviews: Arrows by Melissa Gorzelanczyk

"One arrow changes everything." (cover)

Title:  Arrows
Author: Melissa Gorzelanczyk
Publisher:  Delacorte Press
Release Date:  January 26, 2016
Genre: Young Adult  (Contemporary with slight Fantasy elements) 


People don’t understand love.

If they did, they’d get why dance prodigy Karma Clark just can’t say goodbye to her boyfriend, Danny. No matter what he says or does or how he hurts her, she can’t stay angry with him . . . and can’t stop loving him. But there’s a reason why Karma is helpless to break things off: she’s been shot with a love arrow.

Aaryn, son of Cupid, was supposed to shoot both Karma and Danny but found out too late that the other arrow in his pack was useless. And with that, Karma’s life changed forever. One pregnancy confirmed. One ballet scholarship lost. And dream after dream tossed to the wind.

A clueless Karma doesn’t know that her toxic relationship is Aaryn’s fault . . . but he’s going to get a chance to make things right. He’s here to convince Danny to man up and be there for Karma.

But what if this god from Mount Olympus finds himself falling in love with a beautiful dancer from Wisconsin who can never love him in return?



OK, Greek mythology mixed with Teen Mom? Really? Yes, really, but don't fret. Arrows by Melissa Gorzelanczyk is surprisingly not what you think. It's not intense with the power struggles of Greek mythological gods or the over the top dramatizations of Teen Mom. It's more about love, and what love represent  and what love isn't. Love is not about power, nor is it about control.  When abuse takes on in a relationship, it no longer is love.

I met Melissa at the NoVa Teen Book Festival earlier last month. I didn't know much about Arrows or Melissa, but after one breakout session with her, I bought the book and read it. (That's her on the right here. She matched her nails to the cover! Isn't that cool?!)  Don't we all have some idea of love and in some form or another, a story about cupid and his love sparkling arrows sparks imagination? With Arrows, we find our main character Karma in a more than realistic dilemma of a relationship that is toxic on all levels. Yet, she can't pull herself away.  The role of a cupid may be more of fantasy element, but the idea of finding true love and understand what love really is, had this novel ready to be divulge. The only gripe, the fast-paced storyline concluded this story faster than I wished it to be.

After reading the book, I reached out to Melissa, and she kindly agree to the following interview. And if you've read the book, maybe there's a little more tidbit in the interview for you?! So scroll on down!

NOTE:  All opinions expressed are my own. For my review policy, please see my Disclosure page.





Melissa Gorzelanczyk is a former magazine editor and columnist who believes love is everything. She is a proud member of the SCBWI, The Sweet Sixteens and the Class of 2k16. Her young adult novel ARROWS is available now from Delacorte Press, a division of Penguin Random House. She is represented by agent Carrie Howland of Donadio & Olson. She lives in Green Bay, Wisconsin, with her husband and family.

TO CONNECT WITH MELISSA:  website,  facebook,  twitter



JC = Just Commonly
MG = Melissa Gorzelanczyk

JC:  Hi Melissa! It was so nice to meet you at the NoVa Teen Book Festival early March.  Your take on Arrows left an impression on me and I would love if you can share some of that with my readers on this interview!

MG:  I’m honored to be here! And it was lovely to meet you at NoVaTEEN. (Wasn’t that an amazing event??)

JC:  Let's start off with something fun. What's one funky thing about you that not many people know about?

MG:  I often write aloud. Sometimes I can’t get the feel of a scene or a character until I say it, much to the dismay of anyone around me.

JC:  Coca Cola or Pepsi?
MG:  Diet Coke on ice.

JC:  Tea or Coffee?
MG:  Both, but coffee more.

JC:  Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts?
MG:  Oh god, no fair! I guess Starbucks because I can live without donuts, but not without coffee.

JC:   Haagen-Daz, Ben & Jerry's or Baskin Robbins?
MG: Ben & Jerry’s all the way.

JC:  Dogs or Cats?
MG:  Dogs. I have a boxer named Guinness!

JC:  Aww...look at him! He's a fan! 
JC:  Harry Potter or Hunger Games?
MG: Hunger Games

JC: Candles, incense or potpourri?
MG: Candles, specifically the one made for ARROWS. Scents of honey, vanilla and lavender!

JC: O, how cool is that?!! Candle for Arrows
JC:  Facebook or Twitter?
MG:  Twitter

JC: What's your elevator speech about Arrows?
MG: Arrows is a modern cupid story that blends the fantastical elements of Greek mythology with the contemporary drama of MTV’s Teen Mom.

JC:  Where did the inspiration for Arrows come from?
MG: I loved the idea of cupids being among us, and wanted to explore things like love, fate and choice.

JC: How did you come up with the names of the characters?  I mean Aaryn is a take off of "arrows", but what about Karma and Nell?
MG:  Aaryn’s name was more a twist on Eros than Arrows, but that all goes together! Karma is a twist on the name Carmen. I like to look at common names and see if there’s a way to make them sound fresh. And Nell just sounded so precious!

JC: I love your dream cast choices for both Karma and Aaryn! Let's share them again here! Pictures, please. =)
MG: Aaryn: Graham Phillips, Karma: Juliet Doherty,  Danny: Devon Gearhart
Graham Phillips,  Juliet Doherty,  Devon Gearhart

JC:  In the book, we see the theme of how love is not just about getting stuck with an arrow. As the author, what does love mean to you?
MG:  I like to say that I believe love is everything, because I do. What matters most about life is who you share it with—so not just romantic love, but all kinds—friendship, family, even fans of your work. A life spent with the people you love is a good life.

JC:  I'm a huge fan of the cover. The blue and the red really shines through. Your matching nails at the event was great! So who came up with the cover?
MG:  Thanks, I love it too. Designer Ray Shappell was the genius behind the cover. You can read more on his process in this cover reveal post.

JC: What is your favorite thing to do besides writing and reading books?
MG:  Ha, is it silly to say go out to eat? I think the reason I feel that way is because I’m usually sharing a meal with someone I love, and there’s no cooking or cleanup involved, which is pretty much a perfect scenario.

JC:  What book(s) are you currently reading?
MG: The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry and A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro. They’re both incredible!

JC:  O, I have The Love That Split the World on my TBR shelf too. Getting there soon!

JC:  What can we expect from you next? Can we expect a sequel? I feel like there's more to be said for Leah and the cupid world!
MG: Oooh, I like that train of thought. I can totally imagine Leah getting swept off her feet into godly adventures and heartbreak. More to come on my next projects later this year. *wink

JC: Any next live events you'll be participating that we can look forward to, location or Facebook event?
MG: You can follow my entire book tour on my website. Check it out!

JC:  Any parting words for eager fans?
MG: Love and be loved. xo

JC:  Again, Melissa, thank you so much!
MG: Thanks so much for having me!

It was so much fun to have the chance to meet and chat with Melissa. Check out Arrows, for sure. 







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