Monday, June 4, 2012

FAST FIVE Author Interview with J.A. Schneider

Today’s guest is J.A. Schneider, author of the medical thriller novel Embryo. Joyce is a former staffer at Newsweek and a health writer who with her husband created the website The Cook and The Cardiologist Chocolate too! Diet.

GAIL: Welcome, Joyce, and thank you for visiting today. One of my favorite novelists is Tess Gerritson who writes medical thrillers. When I read your novel last week, I couldn’t help but think, Move over Tess. Rather than the 140 characters we’ve grown accustomed to on Twitter, can you share with us a more detailed account of the novel and your research for Embryo?

JOYCE: EMBRYO’s plot: An intern determines to investigate tragedies at a famous fertility & genetic engineering hospital. My husband, a physician of endless patience, helped with the medical details, which I interwove into this story idea that nagged and wouldn’t let go.

Details: “Maria Moran’s first inkling of trouble was the coppery taste in her mouth. It came suddenly, a rushing whoosh of something that made her gag, and when she reached to wipe her mouth, her hand came away smeared with blood.”

So begins this thriller about a young intern, Jill Raney, determined to investigate tragedies and terror at a famous fertility and genetic engineering hospital. When two pregnant women die and a fetus is delivered with severe chromosomal abnormalities, Jill’s superiors - including handsome, smitten-with-her resident David Levine – insist there’s no common link.

But her suspicions deepen with the grotesque murder near the hospital of another pregnant woman - her belly drained of amniotic fluid. And when a woman miscarries in the hospital and then disappears, Jill frantically searches for her - following a terrifying path that seems to link all the victims: Is someone playing with life...and the structures of human life itself?

An unforgettable tale of suspense with a shocking denouement, Embryo takes you deep into the mind of malignant genius.

GAIL: As a young intern, is “the job” the most important part of your protagonist’s life?

JOYCE: Yes, “the job” is most important to Jill, but on her terms. She is strong, smart and brave, someone you like right away – but she also questions every premise and order; sees what others don’t or won’t see and takes independent, determined action. This includes falling in love when superiors warn her against it. She’s stubborn! Her own woman!

GAIL: The Mystery/Suspense genre is the focus of Fast Five interviews, but what unique twist makes your novel stand out?

JOYCE: A novel about malignant geniuses tinkering with IVF and human genetic engineering? It hasn’t been done before. Some will call this sci/fi, but the technology really is there. That’s why the idea wouldn’t let go.

GAIL: How does your main character’s profession draw her into suspenseful situations, (murder, for instance?)

JOYCE: It shouldn’t! Jill’s profession should be about saving lives; bringing joyous new lives into the world. But the famous hospital she chose to train in staffs scientists monkeying with life to terrible consequences – that’s what unexpectedly draws in this brilliant young woman.

GAIL: Is Embryo part of a series, and are you working on a sequel?

JOYCE: Yes. There will be a sequel.

GAIL: This isn’t a Fast Five question, more an “if/then” scenario: If Paris is not an option, then where would you most like to spend your time writing and why.

JOYCE: At home. On the couch or even in…bed! Shrinks had a great idea: lying on your back brings out the best ideas. Anyway, I am in Paris when I’m not. You can go anywhere in your mind.

Here’s the book on Amazon:
Here’s me on Twitter:!/JoyceSchneider1
And on FB (wall)
(Facebook Page  & wall have till April been devoted to health, fitness, and diabetes control. Since EMBRYO, now more active with Goodreads, Twitter, Kindle & ebook lovers) 


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for a delightful interview. I really like the closing statement: You can go anywhere in your mind.
    Embryo sounds like a compelling mystery -- quite different from anything I've ever read. It's on my TBR list now!


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