Thursday, 24 July 2014

Character Guest Post - Jill Knapp


The question that 23-year old Amalia Hastings wants the answer to is: What happens to men when they move to Manhattan? Life in the city gives Amalia a ride she is not expecting. As she tries to find her way on the little island that never sleeps, she discovers she has a harder time navigating through life then she does the streets of Greenwich Village and finds herself truly lost in the complex world of men, graduate school, money, family, and friendship. She thought she had everything she wanted – a new apartment in Manhattan, a first-rate education at NYU, a group of trusted friends and Nicholas, a boyfriend who she once believed was her soul-mate. But somehow, it isn’t enough. Stumbling through her relationships, Amalia encounters Michael. An attractive classmate who quickly moves from being one of her close friends, to an inconsistent friend-with-benefits. After all, the only thing consistent about New York is its beauty. After getting terribly lost searching for love in all the wrong places, Amalia finds herself torn between the possibility of a relationship, and an adventure she's been planning all along. She eventually realizes that solely chasing love closes her off to all of the other good things life has to offer. Now she must decide – what is worth the chase? Originally self-published and titled Chase, What Happens to Men When They Move To Manhattan is the debut novel from author Jill Knapp and the first in a series of novels. Jill is now published by Harper Impulse, HarperCollins.

Character profile- Amalia Hastings.

My name is Amalia Danette Hastings and I’m 22 years old. Well, 23 next month. I’m 5”5 inches tall, about 115-120 pounds and I have a birds nest of blonde hair on-top of my head. I’m in the middle of my first semester of graduate school at New York University studying human behavior and biological science. I’m not exactly sure what I want to do with my master’s degree when I am finished, but it’s only the first semester so I have plenty of time to decide. Right?

Well enough about my boring school life, let me tell you a little bit about the juicy stuff, my love life. I have a boyfriend, nay a soul-mate, named Nicholas. We’ve been together for a few years now, ever since we both graduated from Rutgers. One night, after years of being “just friends”, he took me in his arms and professed his love for me. We’ve been together ever since.

But even more importantly, let’s talk about where I live. I live in New York City, Manhattan to be specific. Technically the West Village is you want to be even more specific than that! It’s a big change from growing up in Staten Island and going to college in New Jersey. Although Staten Island is still technically part of NYC, I definitely didn’t feel like I was a “city girl” when I lived there. But once I moved here, everything changed.

If we’re being completely honest here, I think I sort of fell apart. I could have leaned on my friends a little more, asked for help when I was having problems. But that’s what they say about hindsight, it’s 20/20. I would have had to recognize the problems I was having to begin asking for help.

Maybe it was the high pressure environment of being in a competitive graduate program in one of the country’s top schools. Or maybe I was overwhelmed by all of the freedom. There were no rules, no RA’s like in college watching your every move. No dress codes, no curfews, no parents. I began to realize that all of those lines we draw for ourselves are merely in our heads. You can cross them at any time, and there’s no one here to stop you.

So that’s what I did, crossed a line. Big time. It was the most exhilarating moment of my life, and there’s no going back.

Sure, I can blame it on my depressive state at the time. I can blame it on the alcohol I had been consuming in the middle of the day, I can even blame it on him. Him, with his piercing brown eyes and soft as heaven lips. I could blame it on anyone and anything because ultimately I wasn’t accountable to anyone. Anyone apart from myself that is.

It’s a strange feeling to have, this loss of control. This seduction. And as much as I wanted to make it stop, I wanted even more for it to continue.

About the Author:

Recently signed by Harper Impulse/ HarperCollins, Jill Knapp is a native New Yorker who is the author of "What Happens To Men When They Move To Manhattan?", a  New Adult series. A former adjunct professor of Psychology at her Alma Mater Kean University, she received a Masters degree in Psychology from the New School For Social Research in Manhattan. A regular contributor to the Huffington Post, Knapp- writes about entertainment, dating and relationships, and the differences between city and suburban lifestyles. You can follow her on Twitter at @JL_Knapp or
check out her Goodreads page 

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