A Constellation of Roses: Review and Author Interview

About the Book:

Title: A Constellation of Roses

Author: Miranda Asebedo

Publisher: Harper Teen

Release Date: November 5, 2019

Genre: YA Contemporary

Pages: 326

thumbnail_ConstellationRoses hcSynopsis:

Trix McCabe is aimless, rootless, and on the run. At least, that’s what she tells herself.

Ever since her mother walked out, Trix has been determined to make it on her own. And with her near-magical gift for pulling valuables off unsuspecting strangers, Trix is confident she has what it takes to survive.

Until she’s caught and given a choice: jail time, or go live with her long-lost family in the tiny town of Rocksaw, Kansas.

Running away is one of the things Trix does best, and she doesn’t plan to stick around Rocksaw for long. But there’s something special about the McCabe women, something in their unexplainable talents that Trix is drawn to. Her Aunt, Mia, bakes pies—Bracing Blueberry, Never-Lonely Lemon, Ardent Apple—that seem to cure all ills. Her cousin, Ember, hand-sews dresses and can tell a person’s deepest secrets with the touch of a hand. And Trix’s great-aunt takes one look at Trix’s palm and tells her that if she doesn’t put down roots somewhere, she won’t have a future anywhere.

Before long, Trix feels like she might finally belong with this special group of women in this tiny town in Kansas. But when her past comes back to haunt her, she’ll have to decide whether to take a chance on this new life…or keep running from the one she’s always known.

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I absolutely loved this book! To me, A Constellation of Roses is about discovering who you are, belonging, and finding home, with a dash of magic sprinkled in. The main character, Trix McCabe was abandoned and is trying to get by on her own. She has the ability to be able to steal valuables from strangers and not be seen, but she eventually gets caught. She goes to live with relatives that she never knew existed in a small town. Trix doesn’t plan on staying there, but she learns more about the McCable women and that they have gifts like she does. She also happens to meet a cute boy. She may have finally found a place where she belongs, if she can stop herself from running.

I really enjoyed the main character, Trix. I love that she is flawed. She is so strong and resilient despite everything that she has been through. The secondary characters are amazing as well. Aunt Mia is so sweet and tries to fix everything, Auntie has a great sense of humor, shy Ember is such a good friend and listener, and Jasper just had my heart from the beginning.

I felt that the message of hope and forgiveness is so important to this story. Despite what our circumstances may be, and what we’re going through, there’s always hope that things can get better. Our past doesn’t have to dictate our future.

If you love stories about belonging, family, hope, heartbreak, and magic, this story is for you! Go forth and add this beauty to your TBR.

There’s still time to preorder and get preorder goodies as this book is releasing on November 5, 2019. Preorders and library requests are so helpful to authors.


Author Interview:

1. Do you think Trix would get along with the ladies from The Deepest Roots?
I think Trix and Rome would get along really well. Both characters are really fierce and guarded, but underneath that they truly care about their friends and family and would do anything for them. Their character arcs both involve learning to trust and ask for help when they need it.
2. How did you come up with the ideas for the pies/bakery that are such a big part of the story?
I really wanted to play off of the idea of “comfort food.” There are certain foods that we reach for that bring back happier memories, like childhood favorites macaroni and cheese or homemade chocolate chip cookies. So I wanted to bring this concept to life in a way that would work for anyone who ate the food, regardless of their childhood memories and food preferences. To do that, I started not with the food itself, but with the feelings that make people long for comfort. The first pie I came up with was Never-Lonely Lemon, and after that, Bracing Blueberry. After that, the idea of the bakery came second, both as a place where the family could sell the pies, and as a vehicle to put Trix and her family at the heart of the community.
3. You tackled some tough subjects in this story. Were they difficult to write at times?
Absolutely. This was a really difficult book to write at times, and sometimes I had to take a step back and indulge myself in some happier TV shows and movies to take my mind off of it. Trix’s mother, Allison, gave birth to her daughter while very young and alone, and most of their early life together is just struggling to survive any way that they can. They endure homelessness and poverty, and at times Trix’s gift for theft is the only thing between them and hunger. Later, Trix’s mother struggles with addiction, and this becomes a huge hurdle in their relationship. Eventually, Trix and Allison have to find a way to forgive each other for a past they can’t change, and Trix has to decide if she’s going to let past wrongs dictate her future. Though the story has its dark moments, I also tried to find moments of hope and happiness for the characters and their relationships with each other.
4. Are there any plans for more stories in the TDR/ACOR Universe?
I would love for there to be more stories in that universe. I really enjoyed bringing back some mentions of Cottonwood Hollow, and Jasper Ruiz’s uncle, Deputy Ruiz, from The Deepest Roots. I’d love to see some more minor characters come back for their own stories!

About the Author:

Miranda Asebedo was born and raised in rural Kansas with a love of fast cars, open skies, and books. She carried that love of books to college, where she got her B.A. and M.A. in English, with an emphasis in Creative Writing and Literature. A Seaton Fellowship recipient, her short fiction has appeared in Kansas Voices, Touchstone, and Midway Journal.

Miranda still lives on the prairie today with her husband, two kids, and two majestic bulldogs named Princess Jellybean and Captain Jack Wobbles. If Miranda’s not writing or reading, she’s most likely convinced everyone to load up in the family muscle car and hit the road.



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