The Ultimate Gamer Nerdgasm (Interview with Jen Alexander & Giveaway)

The Aftermath Blog Tour

About The Aftermath

Last week I posted my review of The Aftermath. This is a pretty awesome book if you love video games! Here’s a refresh of what the book is all about, then I’m going to dive into an awesome interview with Jen herself!

The AftermathThe Aftermath by Jen Alexander
Published by: Harlequin Teen on August 26, 2014
Genre: Dystopian, Science Fiction
Pages: 288
Source: Blog Tour
Book Details
Rating: ★★★★

Sometimes, I dream that I'm someone else.

A girl with dark hair who doesn't worry about hunger

or thirst or running from flesh-eaters.

In her world, those sorts of things don't exist.

Since the spring of 2036, when the world changed forever, Claudia and a small clan of survivors have roamed the streets of a very altered Nashville: polluted and desolate, except for the ever-present threat of cannibal Hoarders. Together they must undergo punishing tests of endurance and psychological challenge sometimes with devastating consequences all just to live another day.

With food and water in dwindling supply, and with danger lurking around every corner, no one can be trusted. And as her world starts to make less and less sense, Claudia begins to realize something terrifying: she is just a pawn in some sort of game, and all of her actions are being controlled from afar by a mysterious gamer. So when she meets a maddening and fascinating outsider named Declan, who claims to be a game moderator, she must decide whether to join him in exchange for protection and access to the border.

If they play the game right, they are each other's best hope for survival and a life beyond the only world Claudia's ever known: the terrifying live-action game known as The Aftermath.

Read My Review

Interview with Jen

Ashley I’m just going to dive right into the nerdgasm: KRAAAATOS, DEIIIIIMOS (cue theme tune).

God of War is like my favourite game in the whole world and we need to fangirl over it together. Tell me everything! Which game in the series is your favourite? How fast did you complete GoW3 (yes, I saw that in the author’s note—TELL ME!), have you platinumed all the games? Which was your favourite god to kill? I NEED TO KNOW IT ALL!

Jen *FANGIRLS* I love, love, LOVE all things God of War, so to hear it’s one of your faves makes me absolutely giddy! My favorite in the series is definitely GoW3. Believe it or not, it was the first in the series I played—a Game Stop employee told me I absolutely had to meet Kratos, so I figured why not. From the opening scene, I was hooked, so of course I had to go back and play the rest of the games. I haven’t platinumed all the games yet but that’s on my to-do list eventually! 😛

My favorite god to kill was definitely Poseidon—that battle kicked butt. My least favorite was Hades because it took me FOREVER to win.

Ashley Please tell me you hate those spinning, bladed columns of doom from GoW1.

Jen *Squeezes eyes closed* Can I pretend you never reminded me of these things? I LOATHE them!

Ashley Is it even possible for you to play God of War anymore without feeling like a murderous sociopath named Olivia?

Jen Yes! Please pay no attention to the fact I said that very enthusiastic yes with a slightly diabolical grin.

Ashley Okay, as much as I love God of War, let’s move on a little. What’s your gaming platform of choice: PC, PlayStation, or Xbox?

Jen Right now I’d have to go with the Xbox One. I know Ryse: Son of Rome received some pretty awful reviews, but I seriously loved it. If you’d asked me what my favorite platform was a year ago, I would’ve definitely said PS3. Most of my favorite games—God of War and the Final Fantasy games—are primarily found on Playstation.

Speaking of consoles, what do you think about God of War coming to PS4 (see, of course I had to go back to GoW). I’m thrilled!

Ashley I bet God of War on PS4 would be AMAZING! I thought GoW3 was pretty awesome in terms of visuals, but I know that will be really ramped up in PS4.

Ashley What’s your favourite type of game? First person shooter, role play game, puzzle game, epic button mashing blades of chaos game? Do tell!

Jen RPG and epic button mashing blades of chaos games. I can get lost in those worlds!

Ashley I completely agree! It’s like we were made to be gamer buddies.

Ashley Imagine you were going to play Star Wars: The Old Republic. Which side would you choose? Sith or Jedi?

Jen Jedi—I like to think I’d fight on the light side of the force (Claudia would pick Jedi too). 😉

Ashley Have you ever played Lord of the Rings Online? Even though the game is kind of dying and it’s been like seven years, I’m still semi-addicted.

Jen No, sadly I’ve never played Lord of the Rings Online, but I’m looking it up in a few minutes. I’ve played WoW, which I loved and was very addicted to.

Um… now that I think about it, should I be afraid to download LotRO?

Ashley Of course you shouldn’t be afraid! It shall consume your soul and every waking moment of your life, but it’s not like that’s a problem…


Seriously though, it is very WoW-esque in its play style, just with a different story. I think that’s why I chose LOTRO over WoW because I already loved Lord of the Rings and wanted that back story in the game.

Ashley How about Team Fortress 2? Asking this question for my husband because he adores that game.

Team Fortress 2: Soldier's Victory

Jen I’ve played Team Fortress 2 a few times, but I’m not the best at shooter games (in the past, my husband would always sneak up on me, and I had no idea what was going on). I like some of the Call of Duty games, but I always get my butt kicked by the twelve and thirteen year olds playing campaigns online.

Ashley Saaaame! I think it’s something about the controls that just owns me. I suck at shooter games where you actually have to aim (that makes me sound horrible at gaming). Using guns in games also turns me off for some reason. I prefer swords and/or magic. I also just really don’t like the whole first person play style. I prefer third person.

Ashley Was there one specific game that inspired The Aftermath? Or was there one game you played a lot to do research for the book?

Jen Honestly, a variety of games inspired The Aftermath, but the idea itself came from a crazy dream I had after gaming one evening. In the dream, I was trapped inside a video game where another human being was playing me. I think the games that I was playing the most during the time I wrote the novel were GoW3 and FFXIII, so they were pretty influential.

Ashley In The Aftermath, Declan says:

“What kind of game would it be if everyone had a map [that showed all the people and locations]? [..] Wouldn’t be worth playing, would it? Your character would just breeze through the game because she’d know where everything is.”

How do you feel about maps in games? Like, if you were playing a MMORPG and completing quests, how would you feel about a map that showed you where to go to complete each quest? Is that a convenience or ‘easy mode’?

Jen I think that’s ‘easy mode.’ When I have a map showing me my next destination, I feel like I miss a lot the game has to offer. So many games have these amazingly orchestrated worlds, and it really adds to the gaming experience to explore them. I’m not going to say I haven’t used a map (or walkthrough hints) in the past—because I totally have—but I always feel disappointed when I complete the game. Going through a game the second time doesn’t feel as magical, so I like to get the full experience the first time through!

Ashley PLEASE tell me that The Aftermath is a series! I mean, SOMEONE (not naming any names here.. *cough*Lancaster*cough*) needs to die. And I need to watch it happen. I NEED TO SEE THE LIGHT LEAVE HIS EYES!! In a totally non-creepy, non-murderer way. But seriously, there’s more to come, right?

Jen Oh yeah. Now, I can’t promise Claudia will go all Kratos on SOMEONE, but there is definitely more to come!

Ashley Aww you mean she doesn’t get Blades of Chaos??? Damnit!! Oh well, I’m sure the rest of the series will still be awesome. 😛

Thanks so much for stopping by, Jen! It was a pleasure to go all God of War fangirl with you.

About Jen Alexander


The character of Claudia and the starting point for the THE AFTERMATH came to Jen Alexander in a dream. She couldn’t shake the disturbing idea of a person trapped inside a live-action video game until finally her husband pressed her to write the story down. A former personal trainer, Jen’s background definitely influenced the physically powerful main character Claudia and the action-packed plot twists.

A native of North Carolina, Jen Alexander spent her childhood with her nose buried in either a book or a video game, and sometimes both at the same time. Jen now lives in North Carolina with her husband and children.

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One super lucky winner will get the GRAND PRIZE package, which includes the following books:

  • 2 copies of The Aftermath
  • Ghost House
  • Rain
  • Let’s Get Lost
  • Invisible
  • Drowned

Giveaway is open to US/Canada residents only.

Aftermath giveaway

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Check out the rest of the tour!

Monday, August 4th – Two Chicks on Books – Guest Post
Wednesday, August 6th – Supernatural Snark – Author Interview
Friday, August 8th – Kimberly Faye Reads – Guest Post

Monday, August 11th – Good Choice Reading – Guest Post
Wednesday, August 13th – Nose Graze – Author Interview
Friday, August 15th – Addicted Reader – Guest Post

Kismet Book Touring

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I'm a 30-something California girl living in England (I fell in love with a Brit!). My three great passions are: books, coding, and fitness. more »

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  1. thanks for the fun spotlight! I’m not a gamer but I do enjoy watching other people play 🙂 thanks for sharing!

  2. I’m not a heavy gamer, but I have a habit of totally nerding out when someone mentions Pokemon. I’ve always been a Nintendo girl, favoring the lighter games over heavy violence/shooting. I play a few DS RPGs, like Dragon Quest and Twin Night: Summon Age.
    I’m super intrigued by the idea of being stuck in a video game. One of my favorite anime shows has a similar premise.

    Dana @ The Nerdy Journalist recently posted: Review: Ever Near by Melissa MacVicar
  3. This is a great review and interview! I’m not a heavy gamer but I do love Dragon Age. I can’t wait for new game coming out in November but I probably will just watch my husband and daughter play (I have too much reading to catch up on). The Aftermath sounds really good and I love that it’s set in a video game. That’s unique and sets it apart for all the books that are out now. I can’t wait to read this!

  4. I’m not a gamer yet. I have a passion for graphics though! I truly believe I just need to find the right game, but I’m sure I’ll love the book. Thanks

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