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Interview with our in house villain: Bri


Okay, I know I say this every time. But the excitement that I have for this interview. Bri is just my soul sister and someone I immediatley clicked with. We are both in very simailar life stages, have the same interests and can be very raw with each other. When Bri made a video and said she was a dirty little book rat and I replied to it and said "that's what you should brand yourslef and all of us as" and we just clicked. I love being a part of her Dirty Little Rat club. I love that there is someone who can relate to being single in her mid-twenties, who also is in her selfish and villain eras. And before you read that as a bad thing, it isn't a bad thing. We are young and we are choosing us: our mental, physcial, emotional health gets to come first. And so what if we want to feel like baddies, we can. Now, enough of my ranting, let's jump straight into getting to know Bri.


General Bio About You: Just a Wisconsin native with a passion for dark romance and romantasy. A cosplayer and advocate for body positivity, a founders of the 'Read Between the Wines' book club which has created a space for over 100 members to enjoy books without judgement. Through my brand, Dirty Little Book Rats, me and my community, celebrate the joy of smut in a welcoming and open space. 


This literaly doesn't even do Bri justice....but.....I will wait to get even more into her until a little further down ahahh!!



How did you get into cosplaying? It wasn’t until I joined bookstagram that I really realized cosplay was going to be my outlet. Specifically, when I met Julie (@thenycbookworm) who inspired me and encouraged me to do my first cosplay debut! 


The role that Julie has played in all of our lives and journeys here online. I know Julie will scream at me and tell me that it was my encouragement and reching out to her that helped her but still. Julie is an Infleucer for me and I am beyond lucky to kno her. The friendship between Bri and Julie and we can't forget Lesley is just beyond sweet and powerful. I am so freaking lucky to get to work with all three of these ladies on my events.


Just HAD to include this picture below as it was with the content creation time for Julie's short film. And this look, you freaking OWNed it.


When did you start your reading journey and with what? I used to be a huge reader but I stopped reading around college years and did start back up until last year actually. Like everyone else, was told to read ACOTAR and it was like falling in love all over again. That’s series will always hold a big part of my heart. 


The fact that this is also me. I feel like majroity of us got back into reading after college. Funny enough it was during my Masters almost five years ago for me.


Following up, when did you first and last read the ACOTAR series? Last year (I want to say around August?) I started the series and finished all by December. I want to do a reread once the new ACOTAR gets announced!


What does your character, Amarantha mean to you? She was my first cosplay so she always going to mean a lot to me. I think she’s a really misunderstood character that while yes, did horrible things, people were just like “yep I don’t need to hear her back story because she’s evil”. Who knows, maybe her backstory explains why she is they way she is cough cough rejected mating bond  I also just love a good villain and fellow red head heehee.


The way that I also don't hate Amarantha. I always tell myself, we are reading this from one perspecitve and I would LOVE a backstory or POV of Amarantha. Also, the way that this was Bri's first cosplay and how she talked and designed it out with me, it was just so sweet, so right. Not a lot of people are eager to be the villain and I think it takes the right personality to do it and do it well. While Bri is new to cosplay, I have really loved getting to support her in this journey and cheer her on through it all.


What qualities of Amaranthas do you think that you relate to best? I’m also in my villain era 💅🏽 (jk but maybe). No, I think she’s misunderstood and then men she likes will never like her back cries (me with these fictional men).


But also this. While Bri kinda jokes about it here, we both have had some pretty deep conversations about this. And just because we are in the "villain era" doesn't make us evil, it just means we are choosing ourselves. I so relate to the being "misunderstood".


Amarantha is someone that we don’t know too much about, I personally feel like there have been a lot of holes in her story, what do you think her past looks like? Do you think she was always evil? This ties into the unhinged ACOTAR theory that I full heartedly believe is true haha. See below…


Rumor mill says that Tamlin and Amarantha were mates? True or False and what’s your hot take? Hot take is it’s true 🫢 why does she care so much about Tamlin? Why did she curse him to a heart of stone? Why couldn’t Tamlin kill her? 


These are all questions that I do not want answers too, I NEED them. I really want a FULL backstory of Rhysand, Tamlin and Amarantha. Like what really got us to Under the Mountain. Who said and did what?


What’s the fetish that Amarantha has with weird jewelry? She like throphies of her enemies hahahaha 



Do you think Amarantha had a mate, if so, who and why? See the Tamlin theory 👀 


Wildest conspiracy theory, GO! Outside of #Tamarantha this one might get me cancelled but Rhys is part Vlag/Aestri. I’M NOT SAYING HE’S EVIL PEOPLE. Just… there’s something there. Also Mor is a witch heehee.


I am actually with you on this one. I have seen and heard some wild theories about Rhysand actually being bad, which tbh would make Amarantha look like a saint. But also, Mor, 10000% think she is going to ironically betray the Night Court. She is the "truth teller" but I do not see it, I do not hear it, I do not beleive it. I have seen a few theories about her being a witch, I don't really see that, but she is definitely suspicious.


If you could live in any court, and the answer doesn’t have to be Under the Mountain, where would it be? And why? The summer court I think! They way it’s describe in the book is just like my ideal place. Maybe it’s because I’m a Pisces, maybe it Tarquin (100% him) but shoot someone can ship me over there any day. 


The way that this answer surprised me. I don't know why but if I would have ranked the courts that I thought Bri would be in, Summer wouldn't have even been in the top 3.


Why do you think Amarantha stayed Under the Mountain for so long? That’s an interesting question! I want to say it’s because it was some sort of power hot spot for her. She was able to take away their powers and hold them all captive in one confined area. Would be interesting to know if there’s a theory out there that she was also trapped…


Cue this espresso martini sipping pic...


What’s your favorite Amarantha or most impactful quote from her?

"You never figured out my riddle, did you? Pity, the answer is so lovely."

I don’t know why but I knew it was love but then I realized she LITERALLY gave Feyre the answer yall.


I NEVER even noticed this. Hoesntly, that just makes Amarantha that much MORE of a queen to me. Like she was giving out answers left and right. This is kinda just iconic. Sarah really said, evil queen gets the check. Sadly, Feyre put her in checkmate later on.


What do you think Amarantha would wear on a day trip to the Spring Court? Her iconic crown and a flowy long black dress. I also think she might opt for a floral black detail 🤭


I am SO ready for this. The dress that Bri was wearing in all her content is STUNNING. When the majority of other courts will be blending into the Spring Court, Amarantha will stay true to herself. However, would anyone else want to see her in a blood red gown, sitting on a throne??


True or False: Will Amarantha be on the dance floor under the stars at Calan Mai? Or will she be hiding away in the darkness? 100% on the dance floor! But she will definitely be checking on her friends who lurk in the darkness. 


This answer has my heart being clutched. The way that Bri really embodies all of these answers as herself, but also with the character of Amarantha. Like checking on those in the darkness. Not everyone is eager to be on the dance floor, but to know that Bri is actively aware of that and would check on those who shy away. This answer right here tells me that I know I picked the perfect person to bring this queen to life!


What song would immediately get you into the dance floor? Anything by Megan The Stallion. Amarantha is Meg fan and we all know it.

 

Hey Siri, add to the Calan Mai Cast Members Playlist!



What is a song that you hear that reminds you of Amarantha? You should see me in a crown by Billie Eilish 


We just share a brain. Swear to god, twins. The way this is the song that also immediately comes to mind for me.


Four words that best describe Amarantha:

Sultry 

Passionate

Misunderstood 

Playful


Now, apply those four words to you and how you will bring her to life: Oh NO 😂 I should re-think my words but I mean I try to embrace my sexy side and I’m very passionate about about the things that I do and the people I love. I think we’re all a little misunderstood being just girls and guys who like reading smutty faeries books haha. And playful for me is I’m just a teaser honestly and I love to joke around with people heehee


Okay, shut up, you are ALL of these and more. Sultry, ma'am, you've got the s3x eyes down so good. Passioate, hello, I am on your close friends for all of your book reviews. The way you feel about these books and characters, that is passion. You feel things so strongly Bri and that is one of my favorite things about you. Misunderstood, we are all just a little bit of this I think, especially when we tell people what we like to read. Oh playful, the jokes and flirting that I know you can do. You might be in the villain era, but you at least canhave the best of times in it and owning it. Also, you literally coined yourself and fellow friends The Dirty Little Book Rats, that alone says so much about you, your personailty, humor and attitude.


What movie or character reminds you of Amarantha? (Cue Rachel’s answer Snow Whites Evil Queen): Ooo another good question! I feel like Maleficent! I feel like before the movie came out she was just a Villain in sleeping beauty.


The fact that we both picked Disney evil queens, again, twins. But also, your choice and analogy was so much better than mine. I actually can see that. Like imagine if we did get a backstroy and jokes on us, Amarantha wasn't always evil and it is just about perspecitve. Sarah does like to throw curveballs at us and this is one that I want to catch.


What’s something that you wish you could change about Amarantha and why? The whole Rhys situation… I won’t elaborate but I hated reading that.


If you got to name the next book in the ACOTAR series what would it be and why? A Court of Stars and Shadows: I feel like this next book is going to be about the aftermath of HoFaS. Stars because.. well Starborn and the connection with Rhys family line. Shadows because of The night court and and because I also feel like this is going to be Az and Mors book (not them falling in love but just the back stories and finding out who Mor really is…)


Follow up, so you don't think the next book will be about Elain?

So while I think everyone is hung up on this idea of Elain and Azriel versus Elain and Lucien, I think the next book is actually going to cover off on the back story of Azriel and because they are closely tied in the other books, in turn we’re going to get Mors story.  Obviously because there is something there (not necessarily romantically) with Elaine, we’re going to get a smidge of her but it’s not necessarily going to be her book. We don’t know a TON about Az’s family/mother or Mors history and who she is and what Eris meant. I think all of that need to be answered before we get to Elains story. I think this is going to be building of the timeline post HoFaS and leading up to something big then Elains (the next, next book) will be about/durning the something big (multi world war perhaps?)



Ain't no way. First of all, the title choice is SO good. Also, Bri, you are literally the first person who has said that this isn't going to be Elain's book. This is giving me mixed emotions. I so agree with you. But, I also really want Elain's story aahahah. Now, I'm emotionally confused...over a book....honestly, what's new???


Most controversial ACOTAR opinion? Cassian is did it for me more than Rhys. DONT CANCEL ME PLZ IM JUST A GIRL!!


Actually SAME. I did not love Rhysand the way that I love Cassian. In fact, Rhysand isn't even in my top like 5 SJM book boyfriends list. He is just too perfect for me, he is basically a golden boy but in a black and bolded font with all his shadows and "mystery". Like yes, I liked him, but there are more men that I felt emotionally attached to and loved more, Cassian being one of them.


What do you think Amarantha would wear to a Masquerade Ball? Something dark but a little floral.. gothic spring with a gold mask because she just would. 


The irony of Amarantha wearing a mask to Calan Mai will actually make me giggle so hard!!


What were some of your thoughts when reading Amarantha’s story? Kind of like I stated before, she’s a really misunderstood character who unfortunately did a lot of bad things. Maybe there’s something we don’t know..


How do you think you will bring Amarantha to life at Calan Mai? Really playing into her character and interacting with my fellow cast members in a way she would but respectfully. I want this to be an experience for those who attend and want to stay true to what they expect her to be but also add an unexpected element that they maybe don’t. 


The ideas that have been floating aroundin my head for a few things to just feel and be "Amarantha" and villain coded.


 You have not attended any of RMK’s past events, what do you think your experience will be like as a cast member? Based on the friendship I’ve come to have with Rachel, I have no doubt my experience will be beyond my hopes and dreams. Being able to be myself and and portray a character outside of what most people picture her as. I can write a novel about how much I love her. 


The way that I have written so many comments about how much I love you and how excited I am to have you here and on my team, but most importantly, as a friend!


What do you think guests should know about attending an RMK event? That Rachel is an absolute even goddess and does everything in her power to make the most spectacular events. Not only that but her events are welcoming to all and she encourages everyone to just be themselves.  


Bro, this wasn't supposed to be about me. Now, I be in my feels, that is just rude! But also, this is just the sweetest. *Insert crying emoji here


What do you think you will bring or contribute to Calan Mai as Amarantha? I’ll bring the spooky energy to the function. But definitely the dance moves too. 


We have obviously seen a lot of Amarantha content this week from you with sneak peaks and teasers, what was your experience in making content and where did your inspiration for each day of teasers come from? I think just all of my fellow cosplayers have been my inspiration. You all are a bunch of talented geniuses and I love you. It was really fun and challenging to come up with a weeks worth of sneak peaks on a character we REALLY don’t know a lot about right. I absolutely love working with Rachel and am just so beyond grateful to be apart of Calan Mai!! Thank you Rachel for blessing us with another amazing event. 


Just cries some more. BUT, the way that Bri impressed me. As so many of you know, I am so picky, I have a preference in how I like things created and the content that I put out. And Bri, for a first time cosplayer, killed it. I was so impressed. The week before, we talked about a lot of nerves and about finding joy in cosplay. I am so happy to encourage and continue to support so many creators. This really is the best job in the world.


Anything else about Amarantha or you that you would like to add? I can’t wait to meet all of you beautiful humans at Calan Mai!!


Ditto! And if you wan to see more of Bri be sure to check out her on socials and follow along on her bookish and cosplay journey. Another exciting thing, Bri will be moving back here to the great state of Texas just before Calan Mai and I am beyond excited to have her a little bit closer and get to have more random meet ups and hangs. The fact that we haven't met in real life yet is just rude and I am just waiting for the day.


As always, be sure to check back in next week for the next character reveal.

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