Genre: historical YA with a time travel twist
Publisher: Taylor Street Books
You know you are alive, but what if you are dead?
Danielle Grayson is a beautiful, intelligent young woman in present-day Georgia, but when she closes her eyes, she becomes someone else in a different time, one hundred years earlier in fact.
Danielle's other life is as entrancing and romantic as her current one, and the contrast between the lifestyles is intriguing and enlightening (they didn't have iPods in 19th century USA, apparently), but what starts out as being dreamlike soon becomes real and strangely familiar.
Worse, whatever happens to her as Danielle seems to change the past, if it is a true past.
And when she finds she is not alone in being able to flip between the two worlds, life, love and death become really disturbing.
Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/bJZMWnUgZug
An Interview with My Main Characters, Dani and Ben
Author of the young adult novel, As I Close My Eyes, Sarah DiCello, sits down with Danielle Grayson and Benjamin Sheffield to discuss their instant attraction and where their relationship stands today.
SD: Dani, some of the questions I’ve received from readers are how your relationship grew so quickly and what it felt like for you to have such an intense draw towards Ben when you first saw him in the restaurant in Tallulah Falls. Can you talk about that briefly?
Dani: It was surreal. He walked into the restaurant when Shannon and I were just sitting down for dinner and time stopped. I wanted to leap up out of my chair and run to him. If he thinks I’m a nutcase now he definitely would have thought I was insane if I did anything like that. I tried to stay engaged in conversation with Shannon but I couldn’t take my eyes off him. You know that feeling when you pass someone on the street and you feel like you’ve met them before but you can’t place where? That’s kind of what it was like for me. I knew I had met him before I just didn’t know that our connection ran much deeper than I ever imagined. I thought I was going crazy.
SD: Ben, you said that you noticed her in the restaurant as well. Did you feel that same instant connection?
Ben: I’m afraid she’s going to hit me when I say this but no. I thought she was absolutely the most beautiful woman I had ever seen despite her very swollen nose and bruised face. I wanted to go over to her and ask her what happened. I assumed someone hit her and I couldn’t imagine anyone hurting someone so beautiful. I could sense her staring at me while we were eating dinner but I didn’t want to make her uncomfortable by staring back. Plus, the woman I was with wouldn’t have appreciated it.
SD: Here’s another question for you, Ben. After learning about Dani’s dreams, how did you deal with helping her through the discovery of what they actually were? You seemed so supportive through everything. More so than other men would be I think.
Ben: Yeah, it all sounded so unbelievable to me at first but after watching her slip away with my own eyes, I knew she couldn’t control it. Plus, I felt some sort of strange connection to her as well. Our relationship developed so quickly but I think that’s because of the nature of our past. I had to stand by her. I couldn’t let her do this alone.
SD: It’s obvious that you both have an intense romantic relationship. Do you still feel so passionate for one another?
Dani: I know I do and I think Ben does too. We’re just really attracted to one another. I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
Ben: Dani’s the love of my life. I just wish I could help her more with the dreams. We just want to understand why this is all happening to her.
SD: Speaking of the dreams. Dani, were you scared the first time you started dreaming about Cape May?
Dani: Not really. I just thought they were dreams and nothing more when they first started happening. After a few of them I really started to anticipate going to sleep at night so I could see Robert and experience the Victorian era through Caroline’s eyes. I feel pretty lucky that I get to do something no one else I know can. After a few months more interesting things have happened since I last saw Cape May and I finally feel like I’m on the path to discovering why.
SD: Can you talk about the things you’ve seen recently?
Dani: You’ll just have to wait for the sequel around Christmas of this year.
SD: So you’re going to hold us in suspense for a little more just to torture us?
SD: Well this has been an absolute pleasure to talk with both of you. All of your fans can’t wait to see what happens in the second book.
A note from Sarah DiCello: About a week ago I had the idea to create a Pinterest page for my book with photos of the characters and scenes from As I Close My Eyes. If you’d like to have a visual of the characters interviewed, go to http://pinterest.com/sdicello/as-i-close-my-eyes to see the board.
You can also find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sarahdicelloauthor or on my blog at www.sarahdicello.blogspot.com. My Twitter account is @sdicello.
Sarah DiCello is new to Taylor Street.
She writes fantasy / romance.
She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two daughters, and two dogs. She graduated from Shippensburg University with a degree in Communications/Journalism.
This is her first novel. Look for the sequel to "As I Close My Eyes" Christmas 2012.