*Materials & images provided by YA Bound Book Tours.
~Released: December 20th, 2014
~Length: 252 Pages
~Genres: New Adult, Urban Fantasy
Aurelious Forty has led a lonely, troubled life. He stays disconnected from the world around him with no family and no friends. He lives merely to exist…to survive.
Aurelious’ life changes in an instant when an impulsive decision forces him to abandon everything he has ever known. Choosing to follow strangers into a new world, he discovers he was born with a gift so strong, so unique; it could give him the power to change humanity.
But the shadows of his childhood are long and dark and run through every fiber of his soul. Can Aurelious break the chains of his past and use his gift for good? Or will the nightmare of his tormentors set him on a path of revenge so fierce it could destroy us all?
Dianna Beirne lives in a fantasy world. Okay not really, but part of her wishes she did and, since that’s technically impossible, she writes about fantasy worlds instead. Her first Young Adult novel entitled Aurelious Forty; Volume One quickly turned into her first Young Adult series with the addition of Aurelious Forty; Volume Two and, Aurelious Forty; Volume Three.
When not writing, she’s generally daydreaming which morphs into wondering if that last daydream could turn into a book. She has also recently discovered podcasts but doesn’t exactly understand what they are or why they’re different from regular radio shows. So it’s safe to assume that her next book won’t be about a podcast. Instead she’ll just keep listening to the ones that she finds that hilarious because laughing is one of her favorite pastimes and she finds way too many things funny!
Prior to dedicating her time to writing, Dianna taught undergraduate and graduate courses about using literacy in the elementary, middle, and high school classroom. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, a Master’s degree in Literacy and a Doctorate in Education specializing in Curriculum and Teaching.
Dianna lives in New York and is the grateful mother of a son whom she misses terribly when he is away at college.
I think the thing that stands out for me most with Aurelious Forty is how emotional it is. The characters and, as a result, the readers go on an emotional journey that can be pretty extreme at times. Much like our own lives, there are highs and lows for each person that we meet on the pages.
I listen to music all the time. I mean all the time. Driving, cooking, doing laundry, taking a walk, daydreaming, you name it and I’ll have music on while I’m doing it...even if I’m doing nothing. Don’t get me wrong, I love silence, I think best when there is no noise at all and I can’t write with music on but I often use music to get into the mind or soul of a character.
When I was writing the last two chapters of Aurelious Forty; Volume One I listened to It Will Rain by Bruno Mars about a million times simply because, to me, it sounded like the intensely emotional scene that I was writing. So anytime that I wasn’t actively writing that scene on the day I wrote it, I was playing that song so I could stay in the mindset of my characters. I’m pretty sure my son thought I was nuts, but the process worked for me, it’s an intense scene to say the least!
So, that song is on my playlist inspired by Aurelious Forty; Volume One along with a whole host of others. The songs are either representative of a particular character or situation they are in and they all evoke some emotion, well for me they do and maybe they will for you too. And in case you were wondering, I listened to a lot of Mumford and Sons while writing Volume Two!
A Simple Man by Shinedown
If I Tremble by Front Porch Step
Too Close by Alex Clare
Sail by Awolnation
Drowning by Banks
Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked by Cage the Elephant
Pompeii by Bastille
It Will Rain by Bruno Mars
Now and Forever by Drake
Jar of Hearts by Christina Perry
More Than Words by Extreme
Round Here by Counting Crows
Centuries by Fall Out Boy
Handlebars by Flobot
Lightning Crashes by Live
The Wolf by Mumford and Sons
Where Are You Now by Mumford and Sons
Timshel by Mumford and Sons
Plain Sailing Weather by Frank Turner
Say Something by A Great Big World
Stay by Rhianna ft. Mikky Ekko
Headstrong by Trapt
Outside by Staind
Just Breathe by Pearl Jam
Uprising by Muse
A Deeper Look at a Main Character: Aurelious Forty
Aurelious is, at times, a bit of an enigma. He is a very emotional character and while he shares his emotional experiences with the reader, he tries desperately to hide them from the characters that he interacts with on the page. He is typically unsuccessful in masking his own emotions from those around him though he’s generally unaware of how unsuccessful he is because he’s fairly self-absorbed, at least in the beginning of the book. Enigma.
There is a lot to love in Aurelious but he makes you work at loving him, he doesn’t give it right away. There are times when you might think it’s easier to dislike him but then he draws you in and you’re reminded of what he endured as a child and you’re proud of how far he’s come.
Although he is the main character and the one telling us his story, he isn’t the hero. He is really more of a sidekick who has to learn from the hero and finds himself fumbling along the way, a lot. He fumbles so much that he makes the hero a little less heroic for a minute. But, when he starts to look outside of himself, when he starts to connect with and care for the people around him, when he shows us how much he changes and overcomes, then he does become a little bit more of a hero himself. Or at least makes us question how a hero could be defined.
Aurelious Forty struggles. He learns. He grows. He changes. He is an imperfect character, just like the rest of us. And, in his imperfection, he is worthy of being loved, just like the rest of us. As the person who created him, I must confess, I hope people will embrace his flaws and love him.
I had to think long and hard about how I would cast some of the characters for Aurelious Forty; Volume One, while others I could mentally cast right away. One dilemma that I ran into was when I was considering people to play Aurelious, before I finally found him. There was a British actor that looked the part and was talented enough to play such a conflicted character (although you should know that Aurelious isn’t actually the most conflicted character in the series, that honor belongs to Inglore). I really liked that actor but Aurelious is American, not British. I know, I know, good actors can do accents, but in the three books after Volume One, there is an entire group of characters that are British. So, in the end, I saw a different character in the eyes of this particular actor, a character that I adore and you will meet in Volume Two.
The character that was easiest to cast was Callay. He was easy because when I was watching a television show called Hannibal, I stumbled upon Mads Mikkelsen. His performance in that show stunned me (and continues to stun me) so much so that I went back and rewrote Callay to take on some of the qualities that I saw in the way Mads Mikkelsen played the role of Hannibal. For anyone that knows the show, don’t worry Callay isn’t a serial killer but he does have secrets and I gave him those secrets after being inspired by Mikkelesen. So, of course I would have to choose him to play Callay.
(For a full cast list and more info, check out this book's page on ifList!)
Aurelious Forty – Dylan O’Brien
Brekwyn – Henry Cavill (he would have to do an American accent, but we all know from Superman that he can)
Anira – Lulu Antariska
Tanent – Pierce Gagnon
Seylane – Emma Rayne Lyle
Megana – Mimi Kennedy
Telera – Carrie-Anne Moss
Danyon – Tyler Posey (I almost cried when I saw how perfect he would be for this part)
Callay – Mads Mikkelsen (you know this story)
Inglore – Tom Hardy (I’ve never seen anyone play a conflicted character like he does, and he gets to keep the accent!)
This sounds like an awesome story! What do you guys think? Let us know in the comments below!
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