Exclusive Interview with Author, Emily Giffin!

Emily Giffin's new book, Where We Belong, begins with 18-year-old Kirby knocking on her birth mother's door. Kirby has always known she was adopted, but she knows next to nothing about her birth mom, who turns out to be a successful TV producer named Marian who is living in New York City. When they meet, it changes both of their lives in ways they could never imagine.

Get More: Seventeen Exclusive: Author Emily Giffin Talks About Her New Book, Where We Belong!

EMILY GIFFIN'S Where We BelongSeventeen: What inspired the plot of Where We Belong?

Emily Giffin: At its heart, the book is about secrets and what happens to us and those closest to us when we keep them. I've always been intrigued by the power of secrets and the questions surrounding them. When is it justifiable to keep them from the ones we love? And does keeping them irrevocably change who we are? Adoption (under the secretive circumstances in Where We Belong) seemed to be a great way to explore some of these broader themes.

17: This is your first time coming out with a novel that has a teen as one of its main characters. What prompted you to do it?

EG: I have always been drawn to coming-of-age stories featuring compelling young characters. My favorite movie of all-time is Stand By Me and I still reread my favorite young adult books often. In fact, the first novel I ever wrote (before Something Borrowed) was a young adult book, but I was never able to get it published. Writing a teen character is something I wanted to try again for a long time!

17: You're famous for your writing style of switching between two narrators. Did you find that it was easier for you to write as Kirby or Marian? Or was it equal?

EG: At the outset, I think Marian was easier for me because I am closer to her age. I actually went back and read my old high school journals to try to get back in the mindset of a teenager and remember some of the emotional nuances of those years. But once I started writing Kirby's story, her voice came very naturally to me. She's 18, but an old soul and in some ways wiser than Marian. She's my favorite character in the book.

17: It's rumored that Where We Belong might be turned into a TV series! Is this true?

EG: Yes. And they better find someone really, really hot to play Conrad! I'm so excited about the possibility of seeing these characters come to life and can imagine five or more years' worth of storylines.

17: Who do you picture playing Marian and Kirby?

EG: My first choice for Marian would be Jennifer Aniston, but I can actually see a lot of actresses playing her. Debra Messing, Angie Harmon, and Jennifer Connelly would all be great. For Kirby, I'd love to see a fresh unknown actress, but I also really like Phoebe Tonkin from The Secret Circle.

Emily Giffin's novel Where We Belong comes out July 24, 2012 and will be available wherever books are sold!


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