Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Life of Glass Review, Interview and Giveaway

The Life of Glass
by Jillian Cantor

Melissa's father died nearly two years ago in April. The last words he spoke were spoken to her and involved a small piece of glass she found in The Wash - a nearby dried up riverbed. Now her life is changing. A new girl moves into town - Courtney and becomes a close friend. The only problem - she likes Melissa's best friend Ryan and he's a bit taken with her as well. Her mother is now dating again and the guy may be younger but her mother seems to be taken with the man. Melissa's older sister Ashley is the same old annoying older sister - never giving her a ride to school and calling her the "imp" whenever talking to her friends. All this and it's her freshman year of high school. But a few different events change the life of Melissa and those around her, will their family work through it in the end?

The Life of Glass is a gorgeously written book about one girl's journey into coming into her own. Melissa is driven by what she enjoys, but she doesn't fully recognize herself for who she is yet. When Ryan gets pulled away from her, she finds that her feelings for him are deeper than friendship but she rather have him by her side in any way possible than not at all. None of the characters are really two-faced. Yes, there's some pettiness involved in the book - her sister being popular and hanging out with the crowd that is snobbish and self-centered. But there's a little more to each of them, a bit of depth.

The point of view of this book is really something else. You get this foggy sense of Melissa's personality and as the novel unfolds, it becomes clearer and clearer - like you are taking the journey with her into realizing who she really is. I like the realism, the interesting characters, and the overall story of this novel and I will definitely be picking up more of Jillian's novels in the future.

5/5 Roses

Buy it on Amazon*
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*If you buy this book on Amazon through the link above, I will receive a small portion of the sales.


Where did the inspiration for Life of Glass come from? There were a few sources of inspiration, actually. The first was that just before I started writing the book my grandfather died. He was really the first person in my life who I was close to that died, so I sort of took that experience and from that, created Melissa, who was still searching for answers after her father’s death. The other source of inspiration was just this image I had kicking around in my brain for a while of a teenage girl riding her bike through a desert wash while wearing a prom dress. This image never actually made it into the book, but it was the source of inspiration for Melissa and what kind of girl she was – someone who would not be afraid to ruin a dress by riding her bike in it!

Are there any characters in Life of Glass that were built off your own personality and/or experiences? Not really, no, in terms of the personality. There are some similarities between Melissa and me and our feelings about beauty in general, but she really wasn’t built off my personality at all. As for experiences, I did include the character of the grandmother with Alzheimer’s disease because I was/am going through a similar experience with my own grandmother. Just around the time I started writing the book, I’d begun to find it very tough to talk to my grandmother because she couldn’t remember anything from one minute to the next. It struck me the way that our memory encompasses so much of who we are. For Melissa, who feels like everyone’s left her behind, this felt like a particularly important character to include – a grandmother who has literally forgotten her.

Are there any times where you feel unmotivated to write? How do you get back on track if this happens? Honestly, it’s not usually motivation that’s the problem but time-management. I almost always want to write, but I have to squeeze it in when my kids are sleeping, so usually it’s more an issue of making sure I sit down and do it, even if there are other things that need to get done around the house or if I’m tired. I’m a pretty self-motivated person, so I always try to set goals and deadlines for myself and treat writing like a job. I pretty much always make myself follow these “deadlines.” I’m motivated by fear, too. If I don’t write/revise/promote/succeed, then I’ll have to get another job, and really, there’s nothing else I would enjoy doing even half as much as writing!

What are some necessary items you need in order to write? I’m pretty low-maintenance. Give me a computer and some quiet, and I’m good! But coffee always helps, especially first thing in the morning. I find I get a lot done if I can write just after I first wake up as I drink a cup of coffee.

Anything else you want to tell your readers? The Life of Glass will be out on February 9, and if you want to know anything else about me, check out my website: Thanks so much for having me on your blog today!


Enter to win free copies of Jillian Cantor's books and cool prizes! One grand prize winner will receive two glass spirit stones (one for you, one for a friend) from Arizona, where THE LIFE OF GLASS is set, along with an autographed copy of each of Jillian's novels: THE LIFE OF GLASS and THE SEPTEMBER SISTERS. Two lucky runners-up will receive a signed copy of THE LIFE OF GLASS. To be eligible, send an email to with the subject line "The Life of Glass Giveaway". All e-mail entries must be received by midnight (PST) on February 14, 2010. The winners will be selected at random on February 15, 2010. Be sure to include your name and e-mail address with your entry (If you're under age 13, give your parent's contact info). One entry per person. Jillian Cantor's complete blog tour schedule can be found at Good luck!


  1. The Life Of Glass has been moved to a February release date?! *does happy dance* I can not wait to read this novel. I fell in love with Jillian's first book The September Sisters. Great review & interview. :D

  2. The cover is so beautiful! I loved the review and the interview-both were very informative :)

  3. Hi :)
    Thank you for the interview with Jillian Cantor & thanks to Jillian for sharing here. It was interesting to get a peek into the backstory for LIFE OF GLASS and Jillian's writing process. Yay Feb 9th!
    All the best,

  4. Great review and interview :) And thanks for the info on the giveaway!

  5. I would love to get my hands on this book. Very lovely interview. I can also relate my grandmother passed away last year from Alzheimer's/Dimentia and indeed it is very difficult at times from what I remember. Probably more so for the grandma's or others actually going through it.

    Thanks for sharing! Sounds like a very beautiful book.

  6. Great interview and can't wait to read it

  7. Great review and interview - I will try and keep my eye out for it!

  8. I really wanna read this. Sounds amazing.

    BTW- You've got a few awards over at my blog.


    -Brittany :))

  9. Oh I have had my eye on this one for some time! Great review and interview! Off to enter!

    Good luck everyone!


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