October 23, 2015

Blog Tour: We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen – Interview and Giveaway



Hello readers and welcome to our Tour Stop for

We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen!

We are so excited to have Susin on the blog today for a quick Q&A!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!


Blog Tour:  We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen – Interview and Giveaway

Thirteen-year-old Stewart is academically brilliant but socially clueless.
Fourteen-year-old Ashley is the undisputed “It” girl in her class, but her grades stink.

Their worlds are about to collide when Stewart and his dad move in with Ashley and her mom. Stewart is trying to be 89.9 percent happy about it, but Ashley is 110 percent horrified. She already has to hide the real reason her dad moved out; “Spewart” could further threaten her position at the top of the social ladder.

They are complete opposites. And yet, they have one thing in common: they—like everyone else—are made of molecules.

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We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen
Published by: Wendy Lamb Books  on May 12, 2015





“Thanks so much for taking the time and spending time with us here at Chapter by Chapter!

It’s my pleasure to be here, thanks for having me!

Describe your book in 140 characters or less (like a Tweet)

13 year old Stewart and 14 year old Ashley are polar opposites. They’re also about to move in together – a blended family. It’s not gonna go well.


(by the way, I cheated. I think that was four characters over).



What was your inspiration for writing this book?  Was it in a dream? A thought while taking a walk?

I don’t remember the exact moment I had the idea, but I’d already explored the fallout of divorce in a previous novel (“Dear George Clooney: Please Marry My Mom”) and doing a book about a blended family seemed like a natural progression. It all comes from events in my own life; my parents divorced shortly after I was born, Dad remarried soon afterward, I have half-siblings – then, years later, my mom remarried, to a man who has four kids. I remember selfishly thinking, “Thank God I’m already out of the house, because I would have run away!” The thought of suddenly having to share my space, and my mom, with FOUR other kids – it was a truly nightmarish thought!



Tell us about the main character(s).

13 year old Stewart is academically gifted, socially not so much. But he’s a really lovely young man. His mom died two years before the story opens, and his dad has fallen in love with a woman at work. They’re about to move in with her and her daughter Ashley. Stewart is trying to be positive; he wants his dad to be happy. But he’s worried about leaving behind the house they’ve lived in for his whole life, and leaving behind his mom’s molecules, which he knows still roam the house.

Ashley is 14, socially very adept, academically not at all. On the surface she is really the typical mean girl; her social status means everything to her. She speaks in malapropisms. Her dad announced he was gay a year and a half ago and moved out. She is grappling with that, and what it all means – did he ever really love them, or was that a lie, too? She is furious that their house is about to be “invaded” by a new boyfriend for mom and his “freakazoid” son.



Do you have a favorite quote or specific part in the book that you really love?

I do like it when Stewart tries to explain the fact that we’re all made of molecules to Ashley. I do like Ashley’s malapropisms, like “unconstipated.” I liked trying to explore “the mean girl;” I have a great deal of sympathy for Ashley, perhaps because I was rather like her! (minus the good looks and the good fashion sense, plus a bit more smarts). And I do love, when I go into schools, reading aloud the scene with Stewart in the change room at Borden Secondary for the first time, when he notices the other boys have “you know whats that actually dangle” – largely just to see the reactions from some of the teachers. J It’s a bit naughty of me.



Was there a specific part in the book that you had an especially difficult time writing?  If so, why?

Oh, sure. I can answer this two different ways. First of all, I always find middles hard. I usually love writing the first fifty pages or so, and the last fifty pages ‘cos I know I’m in the home stretch and I know where I’m going. The middle, though – ugh! I often don’t really know yet just how the story will unfold. It’s the really heavy lifting.

In terms of emotionally difficult, I did find writing two particular scenes hard; the ones where Ashley is on the verge of being sexually assaulted. I had something rather similar happen to me when I was 14 (similar to the second scene, a boy taking liberties when I was passed out drunk – fortunately for me it was a time before cell phones); but it was tamped down so deep, I didn’t even remember it until I was working on that scene.


What sort of projects do you have going on right now.  Any new books coming out?

Yes, I’m working on another novel; it’s supposed to come out in Spring 2017. And I just wrote a picture book! Not sure what will happen with that, but it was awfully fun to do.



It was great having you on the blog today!  We hope you’ll decide to stop by again someday, and we wish you much success!!

Thank you! I love the world of passionate book bloggers, and appreciate the invite.


About Susin Nielsen

Susin got her start feeding cast and crew on the popular television series, Degrassi Junior High. They hated her food, but they saw a spark in her writing. Nielsen went on to pen sixteen episodes of the hit TV show. Since then, Nielsen has written for over 20 Canadian TV series. Her first young adult novel, Word Nerd, was published in 2008 to critical acclaim. It won multiple Young Readers’ Choice Awards, as did her second novel, Dear George Clooney: Please Marry My Mom. Her third novel, The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen, was published in August 2012. It went on to win the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Award, the Canadian Library Association’s Children’s Book of the Year Award, and a number of Young Readers’ Choice Awards. Author Wally Lamb named it his top YA pick for 2012 in his “First Annual Wally Awards,” and recently Rolling Stone magazine put it at #27 in their list of “Top 40 Best YA Novels.”
Her books have been translated into multiple languages. Susin’s new novel, We Are All Made of Molecules, will be published in Canada, the US and the UK in Spring of 2015. She lives in Vancouver with her family and two naughty cats. She is delighted to have finally figure out how to "claim" her author profile on Goodreads!



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  1. Maria Malaveci

    Have heard great things!


  2. Vanessa

    This book sounds so great! I love books that have issues like this. I don’t read much contemporary, but I am definitely adding this one to my to be read list. =]
    Vanessa recently posted..Review – The Union by T H HernandezMy Profile


  3. Wanda Bergman

    I’d like to read this book because the author is new to me and I’m curious.


  4. Susan T.

    I totally relate a little to Stewart and I really want to see how he interacts with the popular girl! I think there is so much potential for humour and excruciating awkwardness! Lol!


  5. Summer

    I love books that are heavily focused on family dynamics, so I’m really looking forward to giving this one a try.


  6. Katherine Riley

    I think the combining of two families is one of the hardest things in the world and when you have children that are such polar opposites, it can be very difficult.


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