Author Spotlight: Rosaria Munda

@Brooke Amber Photography

Oct. 11, 2019

We are excited to feature author Rosaria Munda and her debut YA novel, FIREBORNE (G.P. Putnam's Sons), out October 15, 2019. 

Welcome, Rosaria!

Be sure to enter to win a copy!

Cover designer: Kristie Radwilowicz

Tell us about your book and what inspired it.

FIREBORNE is about two dragonriders, one a former dragonlord and the other a former serf, who rise to the top of the revolutionary regime that orphaned them. As their childhood friendship is tested by old secrets and new rivalry, they have to decide where their loyalties lie--with the family they were born into, or the one they've chosen. 

I think I've always been inspired by military academy stories and "birthright" stories about deposed aristocrats--some of my earliest favorite books were Ender's Game and Dune. I was also inspired by the places I lived, especially Paris and Beijing, to write about a world living in the aftermath of a revolution (rather than the beginning of one). It's always been interesting to me how we pick up the pieces after such drastic social upheaval. And finally I based the new regime's political structure on the one described in Plato's Republic, which I read in college--where social advancement is awarded based on intelligence and children are chosen at a young age to train as Guardians, future rulers of the city. I wanted to explore the problems such a political system would create.

What are some of your favorite recent YA picks?

I recently finished WAR GIRLS, by Tochi Onyebuchi, which was just devastating. Also really enjoyed Joanna Hathaway's DARK OF THE WEST, the first in an epic fantasy series set in a WWII-inspired universe. For a good creepy fairy tale rewrite, I was blown away by DAMSEL by Elana K. Arnold. 

What is your best advice for aspiring authors?

Read a lot and read widely--both in your genre of choice and far outside it. And, especially if you're an aspiring SFF writer--read nonfiction! It will take your worldbuilding to the next level. If you don't naturally like reading nonfiction, enroll in classes that force you to read it--history, political theory, and philosophy were all subjects I took as a student that profoundly inspired me as a writer. 

What is one thing most people don't know about you?

My father, brother and I are citizens of three different countries--and have different native languages!

Where can people find you online?

Visit me at my website: My handle for twitter and instagram is @rosariamunda (I'm more often on instagram).

Rosaria grew up in rural North Carolina, where she climbed trees, read Harry Potter fanfiction, and taught herself Latin. She studied political theory at Princeton and lives in Chicago with her husband and cat. Her debut young adult fantasy novel, Fireborne, will be released by G. P. Putnam’s Sons in October 2019.

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  1. Wow, that is a beautiful cover! I can't wait to read this book!
    Megan S.

  2. Your book will be fun to read with dragons, especially. I love your advice about reading/studying nonfiction for world building. Congrats on your beautiful and exciting book!

  3. Wow, if only we had dragons there might be more social mobility!

  4. This sounds like a fascinating story. Thanks for the chance to win a copy!

  5. FIREBORNE sounds amazing! I can't wait to read it! :)

  6. I love reading books about dragons. Can't wait to read this one. Congrats!


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