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Inside the World of Die for Me

Inside the World of Die for Me

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Inside the World of Die for Me

Longueur:
355 pages
4 heures
Éditeur:
Sortie:
Feb 9, 2016
ISBN:
9780062379788
Format:
Livre

Description

This can’t-miss companion to Amy Plum’s internationally bestselling series is a compendium of everything you’ve ever wanted to know about the eternally enchanting world of the revenants. Perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series and Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy series, the Die for Me series is wholly original and brimming with action and romance.

Set in Paris, Die for Me introduced readers to revenants, undead beings who must sacrifice themselves again and again to save the lives of strangers. This companion book is the guide to all things revenant, including loads of never-before-seen material. Fall in love all over again with Kate and Vincent by reading their private letters. Relive pivotal moments from other characters’ points of view. Discover deleted scenes from throughout the series. Learn all about the long history of the revenants and how Amy Plum went about creating it. And get a guided tour of the City of Light from the author herself.

Epic Reads Impulse is a digital imprint with new releases each month.

Éditeur:
Sortie:
Feb 9, 2016
ISBN:
9780062379788
Format:
Livre

À propos de l'auteur

Amy Plum is the international bestselling author of the Dreamfall series, the Die for Me series, and the After the End series. She spent her childhood in Birmingham, Alabama, her twenties in Chicago and Paris, and several more years in London, New York, and the Loire Valley. Now she lives in Paris and swears she’ll never move again. You can visit Amy online at www.amyplumbooks.com.


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Inside the World of Die for Me - Amy Plum

CONTENTS

Introduction

1.     Character Close-Ups

2.     The Die for Me Timeline

3.     Revenant Mythology

The Origin of the Word Revenant

The Origin of the Word Numa

The Origin of the Word Bardia

Creating the Signum Bardia

The History of the Revenants

The History of the Revenants’ Guérisseurs

The Nature of Revenants

The Story of L’amur immortel (Immortal Love)

4.     The Paris of Die for Me

Amy Plum’s Paris

Revenant Map of Paris

Supernatural Sites

5.     Deleted Scenes

Die for Me Outtakes

Until I Die Outtakes

If I Should Die Outtakes

Die for Her Outtake

6.     Gaspard’s Epilogue

7.     Inside the Minds of the Characters

8.     An Immortal Interview: Readers’ Questions for Amy Plum

9.     Volant Vibes

10.   Art That Will Animate You

11.   Revenant Reads

12.   Movies for Mortals

13.   Dining with Gods

14.   Parlez-Vous Die for Me?

15.   Test Your Revenant Knowledge

Acknowledgments

Excerpt from After the End

Back Ads

About the Author

Books by Amy Plum

Copyright

About the Publisher

INTRODUCTION

WAY BACK IN JUNE 2009, I WAS IN MY HOME IN the Loire Valley, sitting in the antique bathtub (aka my Idea Factory), musing about the book I wanted to write. I had just finished a short story that could best be described as psychological horror and wanted to do something different. So my mind was already on dark things when I began concocting Die for Me. And while I sat buried in bubbles, wondering who my heroine would be, this sentence popped into my head: Ten days after my sixteenth birthday, my parents were killed in a car accident.

That’s how Kate introduced herself to me. I knew the book would be a romance, that it would be set in France, where I live, and that it would fall on the paranormal side of fiction, so the next question I had was what kind of being this girl would fall in love with.

Finding that answer was more difficult than I expected. I began by compiling a list of all of the mythological creatures I could think of. It ran from vampires and werewolves to nymphs and satyrs. It was a long handwritten list, stretching over a couple of pages. I considered them one by one, musing about which would be interesting to write about. I felt intimidated by all the established rules—by all the different versions of the creatures that were already out there. I didn’t feel like I had anything to add to them.

Finally I had crossed out everything except gods and zombies. (Ghosts still weren’t completely out of the running.) So I tried to come up with a way to combine them. And that’s where my revenants came from: undead saviors who occasionally take on ghostly form.

My mother used to accuse me of doing things the hard way. Mom knew me all too well. Thinking up a mythology is no easy task. I was halfway through the first draft and still asking myself, Why would a creature die and come back to life over and over again? I was at a friend’s house chatting about something completely different when the lightning bolt hit me. They die saving humans’ lives.

I kept having lightning-bolt moments throughout the series. Which is a good thing. Because when I wrote Die for Me, I wrote it as a stand-alone. Just in case, I left the ending a bit open so that other books could follow, but wasn’t delusional enough to think that my first novel would be bought as a series.

So when I found out (to my amazement) it would be a trilogy and started writing Book 2, I thought, Great. I killed off my bad guy at the end of Book 1. What am I going to do now? I didn’t even know there was a Champion, much less who it would be. Thankfully, the characters revealed the story to me little by little, and when I finished Book 3, I thought, Oh! That’s what was supposed to happen! It had all just fallen together. As if it had already existed and it was my responsibility (and privilege) to discover it and present it as best I could to my readers.

It was hard saying good-bye to my characters. A little too hard, obviously, because when my readers asked for more, I happily obliged. I let them vote on what story they wanted next, and they overwhelmingly chose Jules as the focus. So I wrote the novella Die for Her. But that still wasn’t good enough. My readers wanted Jules to have a happy ending. So I completed the series with the novella Die Once More, in which his happily ever after is ensured.

As I have said many times, I feel honored to be the writer to whom the revenants entrusted their story, and I hope I’ve been faithful in its retelling. If you are ever saved by a bardia, don’t hesitate to ask them how I did. I can only hope they’ll give me a thumbs-up, but I imagine they would say that my books were only the tip of the iceberg. They have many, many stories left to tell.

May you all walk with revenants.

—Amy Plum

CHAPTER 1

CHARACTER CLOSE-UPS

AMBROSE BATES

Born: March 15, 1922

Died: November 8, 1944 (at age twenty-two)

Hair: Black

Eyes: Brown

Other: Very muscular; 6’5"; baritone voice

Preferred weapon: Battle-ax

DESCRIPTION

Ambrose Bates was born and raised in Oxford, Mississippi. He enlisted in the army in World War II, leaving behind his elderly parents and the girl he loved. His African-American 761st Tank Battalion was sent to England. While stationed there, Ambrose received a letter from his girlfriend informing him that she had found someone else. Feeling like he had nothing to return home to, Ambrose fought like a madman after his battalion landed on Omaha Beach on October 10, 1944, preferring to sacrifice himself for his fellow soldiers who had loved ones waiting for them.

He died in Lorraine after taking out an entire German guard post single-handedly. Ambrose’s war story was influenced by the true story of Sergeant Warren G. H. Crecy, The Baddest Man in the 761st. Jean-Baptiste found Ambrose’s mangled body on the battlefield and brought him back to La Maison.

After the heartbreak with his human girlfriend, Ambrose didn’t intend to ever fall in love again, opting instead to pick up girls for fun with Jules. Finally, a few decades before the series started, he fell for Geneviève but was too respectful of her marriage to her human husband, Philippe, to let her know. He hoped that when Philippe died he might have a chance at winning Geneviève’s heart. He was unaware that Charlotte had long harbored a love for him.

Ambrose loves music and has a fondness for jazz from the era when he was human. He comes across as easygoing and affectionate to friends, and downright frightening to enemies. He has nicknames for everyone: he calls Kate Katie-Lou, Jean-Baptiste JB, and Vincent Vin, and he likes to annoy Charles by calling him Chucky.

Ambrose passes his free time bodybuilding and playing the trumpet. He is such a big movie buff that Jean-Baptiste built him a home cinema in La Maison. He drives a motorcycle and a 4x4.

AT FIRST GLANCE

Sitting next to the first boy was a strikingly handsome guy, built like a boulder, with short, cropped hair and dark chocolate skin. As I watched him, he turned and flashed me a knowing smile, as if he understood how I couldn’t resist checking him out. (Die for Me, Chapter 2)

QUOTE

Well, I’m glad we’re starting with the easy questions, he said, stretching his powerful arms and then leaning toward me. The answer would be . . . because we’re zombies! (Die for Me, Chapter 13)

ANTOINE MERCIER

Born: 1940 (age seventy-one)

Hair: Full head of gray hair

Eyes: Green

Other: High cheekbones, aquiline nose. He wears what Kate calls an old man hat and reading glasses, and he smokes a pipe.

DESCRIPTION

Antoine Mercier—or Papy as his granddaughters, Kate and Georgia, call him—is a successful French antiquities dealer, buying pieces from around the world and selling them out of his gallery on Quai de Conti.

The only thing Antoine prizes more than his collection is his family. While he isn’t an overly strict guardian, he is very protective of Kate and Georgia. He dotes on his wife, Emilie, and delights in showing her off at restaurants and shows.

Over his career, he has become aware of the existence of revenants, at least the fact that they exist in mythology and that there are secret collectors who will pay a fortune for anything referencing these supernatural beings.

Like Georgia, Antoine is very social; Kate says that he chats with anything that moves. He sometimes calls Kate ma princesse, just like her father did.

AT FIRST GLANCE

On my way past the living room, I spotted Papy in his armchair, reading a newspaper and looking every bit like an older version of my father. He still sported a full head of hair at seventy-one. His noble looks, which had been inherited by Georgia, had unfortunately skipped right over me. (Die for Me, Chapter 25)

QUOTE

Is this just a skirmish, he said, glancing at the vase, or a full-out war? Not that it’s any of my business. I’m just wondering when you’re planning on calling a truce and restoring peace to the household. If it goes on much longer, I might have to leave on an urgent unforeseen business trip. (Die for Me, Chapter 20)

ARTHUR POINCARÉ

Born: 1472

Died: 1492 (at age twenty)

Hair: Long, streaky blond

Eyes: Blue

Other: Kurt Cobain look-alike, clean-shaven face

Preferred weapons: pair of short-swords

DESCRIPTION

Arthur Poincaré was a counselor of Violette’s father and was inducted into Queen Anne of Brittany’s court when Violette became lady-in-waiting. He died alongside Violette during a kidnapping attempt on the young queen. His body lay next to Violette’s in Anne’s chapel, waiting until Violette’s father could arrive to retrieve them and bury them in Breton soil. Anne was alerted when Violette and Arthur suddenly recovered.

One of Anne’s advisers had heard stories of revenants and convinced Anne to keep Violette and Arthur as immortal bodyguards. After Anne died of natural causes, Violette and Arthur moved to the Château de Langeais, the medieval castle in the Loire Valley where Queen Anne had gotten married. Here, they served as the guardians of the castle. They lived for five hundred years in a platonic but codependent relationship, with Arthur acting as Violette’s protector.

Being part of the old guard and knowing a great deal about revenant history, Arthur and Violette went to La Maison when Charles and Charlotte were expelled from the house.

Arthur has spent the last few hundred years writing novels under several pseudonyms, including Pierre Delacourt (historical thrillers), Aurélie Saint-Onge, Henri Cotillon, and Hilaire Benois—some of the most famous authors in French literature.

AT FIRST GLANCE

The boy moved in a distinctly old-fashioned style, stepping up to her side and holding his arm out for her to take it with the tips of her fingers. He was probably around twenty, and if his streaky blond hair hadn’t been tied back into a tight ponytail and his face so clean-shaven, he would have looked exactly like Kurt Cobain. With a major case of blue-blood. (Until I Die, Chapter 2)

QUOTE

Lowering himself to one knee in front of Georgia, he took her hands in his. "Ma chère mademoiselle, may I have the sincere pleasure of being the one you choose to introduce you to the art of combat? I would consider it the greatest honor." (If I Should Die, Chapter 10)

AVA LAWRENCE WHITEFOOT

Born: March 2, 1941

Died: January 12, 1967 (at age twenty-six)

Hair: Thick, black, long flowing hair that frames her face

Eyes: Almond shaped; a tone between brown and dark green

Other: 5’9"; high cheekbones, glowing copper-colored skin, bow lips

Preferred weapons: Glock and short-sword

DESCRIPTION

Ava was born to a racially diverse family, with an African-American grandmother and a Cherokee grandfather. Her mom’s side is also Dutch, Scottish, Irish, and French. She jokes that she is the American melting pot.

She was brought up on Long Island and moved into Manhattan for college, studying art history at New York University. Her friends were all writers, artists, and musicians, which is how she met Andy Warhol’s Factory crowd. Andy latched on to Ava immediately, and she became his muse. He introduced her to everyone who was anyone, making her an instant celebrity.

She soon fell for another of Warhol’s favorites, an artist named Rosco. Ava and Rosco were the It Couple of the New York scene, and after a year they became engaged. Soon afterward, Ava was killed in an accident at a party held in an abandoned theater in the Bronx. She plunged to her death from a high balcony, saving a girl who had been standing near Rosco.

Theodore Gold saw her light and took her body from the mortuary, caring for her until she reanimated. The first time she was volant she discovered that the girl she had saved was also engaged to Rosco, and that she was just one of several women he was seeing.

She moved to Brooklyn, not only for fear of being recognized, but also because she wanted nothing more to do with the limelight. Since then she has kept a low profile, living by herself in an apartment not far from the bardia’s headquarters, the Warehouse, in Brooklyn.

Although she no longer wanted to be involved in the art scene, Ava finished her degree in art history and went on to become the world expert on Warhol and his crowd. Using various pseudonyms to mask her identity, she writes books and articles concerning American art after 1950.

AT FIRST GLANCE

The woman is stunning—in an exotic kind of way: long black hair, copper-colored skin, almond eyes, and high cheekbones. I rack my brain but am sure I haven’t seen her before. I would have remembered. (Die Once More, Chapter 1)

QUOTE

You’re in our neighborhood, eight in the morning, full daylight. Know what that tells me about you and your friends? she asks. It tells me you’re expendable, she says, and pulls the trigger. (Die Once More, Chapter 3)

BRAN TÂNDORN

Born: 1960 (age fifty)

Hair: Dyed black, slicked back

Eyes: Huge, chestnut-brown

Other: Pale skin; 6’2"; skeletal frame; dresses in strange, old-fashioned clothes

DESCRIPTION

Bran is a member of the Tândorn clan, one of several families of flame-fingersguérisseurs who historically treated the medical and psychic needs of revenants as well as humans. The Tândorn line was prophesized as the family to produce the VictorSeer—the guérisseur who would recognize the Victor, or, as the revenants call it, the Champion. His mother, Gwenhaël, claimed she did not have this gift, and indeed, it was Bran who was destined to bear this responsibility. When Bran inherited his mother’s powers, he had the signum bardia tattooed on his arm, as was the custom of his male ancestors.

He divided his time between his home in Carnac, Brittany, adjoining a field of Neolithic standing stones, and the family shop, Le Corbeau, in northern Paris, where he sold religious relics. His task was to care for and learn from his mother until she passed her gifts to him.

Bran has two sons. He and their mother, once Bran’s great love, are now good friends and share the upbringing of their children.

AT FIRST GLANCE

His head tilted slightly sideways at my words, as if he found the idea of someone being surprised by a speaking statue curious. What a strange man, I thought. With his slicked-back, dyed-black hair and the huge eyes that projected surreally from bottle-thick glasses, he looked like a cartoon version of the store’s avian namesake. Serious creep factor, I decided, shuddering. (Until I Die, Chapter 27)

QUOTE

Well, that explains why the power transfer didn’t work. . . . It’s simple. This boy is not the Champion. (If I Should Die, Chapter 11)

CHARLES AURELIEN LORIEUX

Born: January 1, 1927

Died: February 1942 (at age fifteen)

Hair: Golden red

Eyes: Same bewitching green eyes as his twin sister, Charlotte

Other: Pale skin; 5’10"; slender

Preferred weapon: Sword

DESCRIPTION

A decade after becoming a bardia, Charles fell in love with a human girl named Madeleine. Bowing to pressure from Jean-Baptiste, he didn’t allow himself to see her, which is why Vincent’s relationship with Kate upset him.

Over the years, Charles’s bitterness about his fate as a bardia enmeshed him in a private philosophical debate over what his life was worth. He spent his hours reading at Paris libraries, becoming obsessed with existentialist theories and coming to the conclusion that he would be better off ending his life.

Charles is a more sensitive and deeper thinker than most of the Paris clan, profoundly concerned with the revenants’ role in humanity. When he runs away to join Uta and her clan, who emphasize the bardia’s higher purpose, he finally finds peace.

AT FIRST GLANCE

The girl had short-cropped blond hair and a shy laugh, and the natural way she kept leaning in toward the boy next to her made me think they were a couple. But upon turning my scrutiny to him, I realized how similar their features were, though his hair was golden red. They had to be brother and sister. (Die for Me, Chapter 4)

QUOTE

"And we’re not true zombies, Charles said with a grin, or he would have already eaten your face off." (Die for Me, Chapter 13)

CHARLOTTE VIOLAINE LORIEUX

Born: January 1, 1927

Died: February 1942 (at age fifteen)

Hair: Boyish short-cropped blond hair

Eyes: Green

Other: 5’7"; long thin figure; feminine beauty that is not disguised by the boyish clothes she prefers; shy laugh; smells like baby powder

Preferred weapons: Bow and arrows, crossbow, karate

DESCRIPTION

Charlotte and her twin, Charles, were born and raised in Paris’s fifth arrondissement, in the Latin Quarter. Their father was a professor at the Sorbonne.

During the Occupation of Paris, the twins’ parents ran a clandestine printing press for the Resistance out of a secret room in their apartment. The press was discovered by German forces, and their parents were killed. Charlotte and Charles escaped capture because they had spent the night at an aunt’s house. Afterward, they returned home and carried on their parents’ resistance by hiding two Jewish schoolmates and their parents in the hidden room. Using their parents’ own contacts, they secured

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