Last Thursday evening I had the pleasure of attending the launch of the last instalment in the Parallon trilogy by Dee Shulman, Afterlife, at Waterstones in Trafalgar Square. If I’m being perfectly honest, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the first two books in the series. That is, I loved the premise of the series and the basic ideas behind the story but I feel like these ideas weren’t executed as well as they could’ve been. However, not deterred by this, I was still incredibly excited about the release of the final book in the trilogy and I cannot wait to find out what happens to Eva and Seth!
After a lot of milling around and some nibbles (there was some seriously amazing food), it was finally time for the speeches. Shulman spoke about the research that had gone into these books and it was simply astounding to hear how much she had put into them. She consulted specialists about what seem like the simplest things us as readers, such as (minor spoiler) Eva shooting a gun. Whilst the terminology might seem very simple to us, it actually isn’t, and Shulman wanted to make sure that everything was as authentic as possible. All the physics-y things have been checked by an expert to make sure that everything does actually make sense. Even though the average reader wouldn’t be able to tell the difference, Shulman has gone to every effort to make sure her story is as realistic as possible for a time-travel novel.
Shulman’s inspiration for the Parallon trilogy came from seeing some graffiti on a school wall. What fascinated her was that there were scribbles from two weeks ago, but also some scribbles from centuries ago – all on one wall! When asked how she had come up with the idea to mix two very different worlds together, the Londinium of the roman times and London today, she said that her inspiration came from walking around London where you could find yourself in the midst of some Victorian buildings and then suddenly amongst 21st century tower blocks.
Shulman’s tips for young writers: Always carry a notebook around. Write something everyday. If you see something or someone that looks interesting, note a description of it/them down, it might be useful material later!
And finally, I got my book signed by her!
All in all, Dee Shulman seems like the loveliest person and I can’t wait to read the final instalment in the Parallon trilogy. Here’s the goodreads synopsis of Afterlife:
Two worlds. Two millennia. One love . . .
Eva is on the brink of death. Ripped from her own world she’s woken in another, only to discover the devastating truth about the lethal fever she’s been fighting – and the enemy that’s chased her and Seth through time. Now the reckless twenty-first century girl and the fearless Roman gladiator must face the final battle. But it’s not just their love at stake; the fate of the universe is in their hands.
Afterlife is the heart-stopping finale in the gripping trilogy that began with Fever
Afterlife by Dee Shulman was published on the 3rd April 2014.
Review coming soon!
Many thanks to the Spinebreakers team for this wonderful opportunity!