Bouncy castles, yellow fleeces and YA cliches: A Q&A with Sara Barnard, author of ‘Beautiful Broken Things’

Sara Barnard’s debut, ‘Beautiful Broken Things’, has only been out for around a week and it’s already left a trail of broken hearts up and down the country. It’s a beautiful novel about what happens when inseparable best friends, Caddy and Rosie, welcome Suzanne into the fold. Serena and BlairWe got the chance to ask Sara herself a few questions on writing, first kisses and ‘Beautiful Broken Things’:

Tell us the plot of ‘Beautiful Broken Things’ in the length of a tweet. Long-time best friends Caddy & Rosie learn about friendship, trauma & recovery after wildchild new girl Suzanne hurricanes into their lives.

Which of your characters are you most like? It has to be Caddy! I was the slightly quiet, slightly awkward one when I was a teenager, always worried I wasn’t quite good enough or interesting enough for my friends.

What was your favourite part of this book to write? I always loved writing any scene where the three girls were together, even if they were just having a normal conversation. But one of my favourite scenes overall was the three girls visiting the Pavilion together in Brighton – it was the only scene I wrote in the morning (I am NOT a morning person!) because I just had to get it down!

Obviously, authors not only love writing, but are big book nerds too. What’s your fave book EVER? Well, it’s not a YA book, but my favourite book EVER is ‘Station Eleven’, by Emily St John Mandel. My favourite YA book is ‘On the Jellicoe Road’, by Melina Marchetta.

Any YA cliches that drive you crazy? When a beautiful boy saves a beautiful girl from herself. If only life was that simple, seriously. (And involved that many beautiful people.)

Speaking of Young Adult, if you met yourself when you were 15, what would you tell yourself? Don’t wear that yellow fleece jumper, my God, it looks terrible, what are you THINKING?! Also, don’t give up on that story. You know the one. (And then I’d do one of those big exaggerated winks)

And if we’re travelling back in time, what would you want to say to the first person you kissed? “Hey, maybe a bouncy castle in the middle of the night isn’t the BEST place for this to take place? Aw, hell. It’ll make a great story. And it’s not like we’ll ever talk to each other again, anyway.”

Because we want to see where the magic happens, send us a snap of where you write:


Have you read ‘Beautiful Broken Things’ yet? Tell us what you thought at @maximumpopbooks!

Leave a Reply




Written by Sophie Waters

Sophie is the Head of Commercial at Maximum Pop! Having studied English Lit and Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, she came to MP! to satisfy her passion for books. Sophie is a diehard Hufflepuff and feminist. She's also a huge cat lover, and can often be found rocking her socks off at a gig.

[g1_socials_user user="148" icon_size="28" icon_color="text"]

Zelda from Tommy Wallach’s ‘Thanks for the Trouble’ answers a few of our burning questions

MP! Style Guide: What are all the different nail shapes called?