Do you enjoy a good coming of age story? Do you squeal at cute romances? Do you love to delve into the world of musicians and people who love music? If you answered yes to any of these questions, or if you’re one of the lucky ones who answered ‘yes’ to all three, then you need to read Ashley Poston’s Radio Hearts novels. The books, The Sound of Us, and We Own the Night are released through Bloomsbury Spark, a digital only imprint of Young Adult and New Adult novels.
I just finished up We Own the Night, and I adored it. Not only is it the perfect quirky romance, it’s also a story of a girl dealing with the transition from high school into the rest of her life, while also moonlighting as Nightowl, a radio DJ. Add in the fact that Poston ties We Own the Night into her previous Radio Hearts novel, The Sound of Us, by giving us a sideways glance at some of the characters found there, and you’ll love this grand, music filled romp. But you don’t need to read both books to know what’s going on in each story, though I highly suggest that you do.
I felt like there was part of a story that wasn’t told in The Sound of Us, and I thought it would be interesting to see the other side of the events that happen in that novel. 🙂
What was it like to loosely connect the two?
It felt really freeing, actually! I got a chance to dive back into a world I really love while concentrating on a completely new cast of characters.
When did you know that Ingrid would be a Radio Personality?
I had a friend who was a radio DJ in college, so I guess I’ve wanted to write a radio-personality type of story for a while. I just had to find the right personality to fit that sort of story, and I found it in Ingrid.
What was the most fun part of writing a coming of age story featuring an older (Ingrid is 18) protagonist?
Well, We Own the Night was originally sold as a Young Adult/New Adult crossover, so I always knew Ingrid would be on the older side of YA heroines when the book shifted to YA. I think the best part of writing an 18-year-old is the gut-wrenching fear of “oh crap, what’s next?” when you graduate high school. It’s something a lot of teens can relate to. For four years of high school we’re told where to go to class, what to wear (or not to wear), and how to achieve, but then when you graduate… it all goes away. I love writing that sort of in-between. I know I was scared to death after I finished high school.
Music plays a huge role in both Radio Hearts novels, does it also play a large part in your own life?
Music’s always been a really big part of my life! My mom had this amazing vinyl collection while I was growing up. Most of my music education came from Hotel California, Free Bird, Thunder Road. I’m definitely more like Junie that way. I also started playing piano from a young age, and then in high school I joined the marching band. So yeah, music’s always been a big part of my life!
Was there a certain album that inspired Ingrid’s story?
Oh gosh yes. I listened to Marianas Trench’s Ever After on repeat for the entire drafting process. It’s an amazing album. I highly recommend it.
You mix cute romance and real life issues together really well. Do you have a formula when writing, or is that just how the words come out?
I think it’s just how the words come out? Writing is a form of therapy to me, so a lot of my worries and anxieties manifest in my books. I just love writing stories. Even when I wrote fanfiction I always wrote coffeehouse AUs!
You give Ingrid a lot to deal with, which makes her extremely interesting. Do you enjoy putting your characters through the ringer?
Real people have a lot to deal with, too. We’re not just storyline and subplot — our lives are composed of running threads that weave in and out of our lives at different moments in time. I like to write like that, too.
Do you think we all have a bit of Niteowl in us?
Oh bless, yes. We might not all find our Niteowl in front of a microphone, but I think we all definitely have one.
Will there be anymore Radio Heart novels in the future?
Maybe someday. I have one more story that I really want to write, but as of the moment I’m concentrating on geeky Cinderellas at conventions (Geekerella, Spring 2017 from Quirk Books) and Anastasias in Space (Heart of Iron, Balzer + Bray, Winter 2018).
We’ll definitely be on the lookout for more of Poston’s wonderful stories!