Wednesday, January 6, 2016

FFBC: Welcome to the club, Underwater by Marisa Reichardt

by Marisa Reichardt
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux
Release Date: January 12th 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Psychology, Realistic Fiction, Mental Illness
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Morgan didn’t mean to do anything wrong that day. Actually, she meant to do something right. But her kind act inadvertently played a role in a deadly tragedy. In order to move on, Morgan must learn to forgive—first someone who did something that might be unforgivable, and then, herself.

But Morgan can’t move on. She can’t even move beyond the front door of the apartment she shares with her mother and little brother. Morgan feels like she’s underwater, unable to surface. Unable to see her friends. Unable to go to school. 

When it seems Morgan can’t hold her breath any longer, a new boy moves in next door. Evan reminds her of the salty ocean air and the rush she used to get from swimming. He might be just what she needs to help her reconnect with the world outside. 

Underwater is a powerful, hopeful debut novel about redemption, recovery, and finding the strength it takes to face your past and move on.

Hello Marisa! We are super excited to have you in our FFBC tours.

Favorite Book?

Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld

Favorite TV show?

A tie between “My So-Called Life” and “Freaks and Geeks.”

Favorite movie?

Welcome to the Dollhouse

Your Favorite Song? 

“You Shook Me All Night Long” by AC/DC

Favorite Food? 


Name 3 fictional places you would move to in a heartbeat. 

The Little House on the Prairie, East Egg or West Egg out of sheer fascination. 

Who is your perfect fictional boyfriend?

Liam from Fangirl

Favorite Quote? 

“It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

What do you find yourself “Fangirling” over?

All the other 2016 debut novels. I have read so many fabulous ARCs that have made me the biggest fan of tons of authors. I can't wait to see what they do next!

If you could meet one author, dead or alive, who would it be?

Shannon M. Parker, author of THE GIRL WHO FELL. She has become one of my very best fellow debut author friends over the last year but I’ve yet to meet her in person. 

Could you tell our Book Addicts a little bit about Underwater?

Underwater is the story of seventeen-year-old Morgan Grant who has developed agoraphobia after a tragic event at her high school. With the help of her family, an understanding therapist, and a surfer boy who moves in next door, Morgan begins facing the life she’s been missing.

I think everyone is dying to make this question. Can you tell us a bit about Morgan and Evan and their relationship? What makes them the perfect YA couple? 

I think what is special about Morgan and Evan is a quiet mutual understanding. Morgan is inspired by Evan but not saved by him. Evan accepts Morgan for who she is, struggles and all. The results are an honest friendship and romance.

How did you come up with the story? Did you find inspiration in any other story/movie/show and how has this affected your writing?

First and foremost, I was interested in telling the story of a high school girl dealing with debilitating anxiety. As I answered the who, what, and why of that, the story began to take shape. 

Tell us your favorite quote from Underwater.

“Something about the way [Evan] smells makes me want to stay near him. He reminds me of things I miss. I breathe him in, relishing the aroma of earth and ocean and bonfire smoke.”

Is there a specific scene that you had the most fun to write?

There is a scene between Morgan and her mom in the courtyard of Paradise Manor that is one of my favorites. 

If you had to pick one song to be the Theme Song for Underwater – Which one would you pick? 

“Carry On” by Fun.

Imagine that we get to see your book on the big screen (how awesome would that be?). Who would you pick to play your characters? 

The only thing I know is that I would like a real surfer from Hawaii to play Evan. 

Is there any recommendations you could give your readers to be in the “perfect mood” to read Underwater (specific music, snacks…)?

Hunker down under a puffy down comforter with a grilled cheese sandwich, tomato soup, and hope. 

What’s next for you?

I’m working on another standalone contemporary YA novel. 

Something to say to our Book Addicts? 

I’m truly honored to be part of this blog tour and I am thankful to those who are interested in reading or have already taken the time to read Underwater. 

Thank you so much for everything, Marisa!

Follow the Underwater by Marissa Reichardt Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

I'm a SoCal native and high school writing instructor. I currently live in Los Angeles and can usually be found huddled over my laptop in coffeehouses or swimming in the ocean. 

My debut YA contemporary novel, UNDERWATER, will be out 1/12/16 from Macmillan/FSG and 4/7/16 Macmillan Children's UK.

I love all books and all genres. While I do keep track of all the books I've read here, I generally don't do ratings or reviews.


  1. Wonderful interview questions. I am so excited to read Underwater. :)

  2. I would like to see how the story unfolds and how it ends.