Hello, everyone! I'm off on a cruise this week, but prior to me setting sail, I was able to interview former child star, Tom Forelli. (Okay, maybe I mean Emmy Laybourne for her new book, Sweet, but shhhhh! Let's be in character!) I know you guys are just as excited as I was about this interview, so I hope you enjoy hearing about Tom's new gig as the celebrity host of Solu's Cruise to Lose!
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (Macmillan)
Release Date: June 2, 2015
A cruise to die for...
Solu’s luxurious celebrity-filled Cruise to Lose is billed as “the biggest cruise since the Titanic,” and if the new diet sweetener works as promised — dropping five percent of a person’s body weight in just days — it would be the answer to the world’s obesity problem. But Laurel is starting to regret accepting her friend Viv’s invitation. She’s already completely embarrassed herself in front of celebrity host Tom Forelli (otherwise known as the hottest guy ever!), and she’s too seasick to even try the sweetener. And that’s before Viv and all the other passengers start acting really strange.
Tom knows that he should be grateful for this job and the chance to shed his childhood “Baby Tom-Tom” image. His publicists have even set up a “romance” with a sexy reality-TV star. But as things on the ship start to get a bit wild, he finds himself drawn to a different girl. And when his celebrity hosting gig turns into an expose on the shocking side effects of Solu, it’s Laurel that he’s determined to save.
Emmy Laybourne takes readers on a dream vacation that goes first comically, then tragically, then horrifyingly, wrong.
Character Interview with Tom Forelli
Kayla: Hi, Tom! Thank you soooo much for taking time out from your very busy schedule to talk with my readers! Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Tom: Sure thing! Can I just say that it’s really a pleasure to be connecting with you and your readers today? (Tom puts his broad, muscular hand over Kayla’s and gives it a little squeeze.)
Kayla: *giggling* If you don’t mind my asking, what made you decide to cross over from acting to becoming a reality show host?
Tom: Absolutely. It’s funny when I go out, people feel like they know me, you know? Because they watched me on the Magnificent Andersons from the time I was, what, four, until twelve, when the show was cancelled. And that means a lot to me. (Gives sparkling smile, laying on the charm.) I guess I feel like I know all of you, as well. So going from acting lines to hosting gigs and just being myself in front of the camera felt like a natural progression.
Kayla: I know you have a lot of female fans who are dying to know – what do you look for in a girl?
Tom: Oh man! (He laughs, shaking his head.) Well, probably a girl who is not… a hugely famous pop star! I mean, no offense to Bonnie. She and I remain really good friends, but I’m more of a private guy. Too much of what was between us was on camera or, uh, on voicemail. I guess you heard the recordings?
Kayla: Yeah. Sorry about that. I think that everyone did. Everyone who checks TMZ, anyway.
Tom: Yeah, that was pretty embarrassing. I don’t know, Kayla. If I was being honest, I’d say I was looking for someone nice. I mean, I know everyone is nice. But someone kind. And thoughtful. (Tom seems to be becoming genuine here. His expression softens.) Maybe someone from a small town or someplace quiet. (Then, remembering he’s on camera, he makes a joke.) Someplace like Ohio! That’s how I see Ohio, don’t you? Nice and quiet.
Kayla: Oh my goodness, girls everywhere across Ohio are so happy right now! Tom, let’s get to the topic at hand – do you personally know or have met the great minds behind the new diet sweetener, Solu?
Tom: I haven’t met them yet, but I’ve read all about them and I’m really looking forward to meeting them aboard the ship tomorrow. Timothy Almstead, the CEO of the Pipop Corporation, is really a cultural treasure. And the scientist behind the formulation, Elise Zhang, has an amazing story. She was a child prodigy who was forced to work in a secret lab for the Taiwanese government. Her story is truly inspirational.
Kayla: Tom, have you had the opportunity to sneak a taste of Solu?
Tom: Not yet, no one has! The first night of the cruise, all the passengers will be served a dessert sweetened with Solu. That will be the very first taste anyone has had of it outside of the laboratory! Pretty exciting!
Kayla: Finally, what are you looking forward to most about Solu’s Cruise to Lose? I’m about to go on a cruise myself, in fact, I’ll be at sea when the interview airs, but it’ll be nowhere near as luxurious as yours, I’m sure!
Tom: Are you sure you don’t want to come along with us? (He gives Kayla a wink.) I bet I could find you a cabin! To be serious, I’m looking forward to the transformation I’ll see among the passengers. Did you know that each passenger is guaranteed to lose 5-10% of their body weight? I think we’re going to see some really dramatic results on board!
Kayla: Thank you so much for your time, and I can’t wait to hear about the great time and weight loss everyone has with Solu on the cruise!
Tom: Thank you! I’ll be sure to let you know how it all goes. Maybe we can do another interview when we get back! In the meantime, keep in touch!
[Hey everyone - it’s me, Emmy Laybourne! I had so much fun doing this character interview for my guy, Tom Fiorelli, the heartthrob actor who turns into a serious survivalist in my new book SWEET. I can’t wait to hear what you all think of the book - let me know on twitter or instagram - @EmmyLaybourne!]
You can read Kayla's review of Sweet HERE.
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About the Author
Emmy Laybourne is a novelist, screenwriter and former character actress. Emmy’s Monument 14 trilogy has earned critical praise ("Frighteningly real… riveting" - New York Times Book Review, Editor’s Choice) and has been nominated by readers to the YALSA Teens Top Ten in 2013 and and won the #5 spot in 2014. Emmy’s book Sweet is due out in June 2015. It tells the story of a luxury cruise to launch a new diet sweetener that goes comically, then tragically, then terrifyingly wrong.
Before her life as an author, Emmy performed original comedy on Comedy Central, MTV and VH1; and acted in the movies "Superstar," "The In-Laws" and "Nancy Drew," among others. Emmy lives outside New York City with her husband, two kids and a flock of 6 nifty chickens.
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