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Lips touch three times, p.19
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       Lips Touch: Three Times, p.19

           Laini Taylor
 
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  Some readers may wonder why, in "Spicy Little Curses Such as These," innocent children and even babies are ending up in Hell. The answer is that, to my understanding, the Hindu concept of Heaven and Hell is not nearly so simple, nor so black and white, as the Judeo-Christian one. I can't begin to try to encompass it, but in my creation I was drawing on the idea that the attainment of Heaven is a very long and rigorous process for a soul, and only accomplished after many, many lifetimes of virtue. The "Hell" that fits into this cycle of reincarnation is not, here, solely a place of punishment for

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  the wicked, but a place of remaking that everyone, even the innocent, must pass through. Likewise, Yama is not the devil, but a god of judgment, and the Fire is a place of purification.

  In the Zoroastrian faith, the word "druj" signifies the opposite of "asha," which is the truth and order of God's creation; "druj" is chaos and deceit. There is some demon lore associated with Zoroastrianism, but the demonic Druj of "Hatchling" are entirely my own creation. Pillaging the dead Avestan language to invent Druj-speak was great fun, but if you happen to speak said dead language, please forgive the liberties I have taken. Like a magpie, I am a scavenger of shiny things: fairy tales, dead languages, weird folk beliefs, fascinating religions, and more.

  ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

  Without two particular people, it is highly unlikely this book would exist.

  Meg Genge, my fabulous Canadian cohort in Sunday Scribblings. We started a writing-prompt site to get ourselves (and others) writing, and it worked! (All welcome: www.sundayscribblings.blogspot.com)

  Jim Di Bartolo, who convinced me these kissing stories could be a book, and whose beautiful art adds a whole new dimension to them. Thank you!

  Thanks also to first readers Alexandra Saperstein, Chary Deutsch, and my mom, Patti Taylor, and of course to my wonderful agent Jane Putch, for boundless enthusiasm.

  Massive thanks to the folks who really turned these stories into a book: Arthur Levine, whose praise makes me feel like a genius; Rachel Griffiths and Cheryl Klein for liking the manuscript and passing it on to him; Emily Clement for all the things in between; Elizabeth Parisi and Chris Stengel for art and style; and the rest of the team at Arthur A. Levine Books and Scholastic.

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  [BLANK PAGE]

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  This book was designed by Christopher Stengel. The text was set in Adobe Garamond Pro, a typeface originally designed by Claude Garamond in the sixteenth century, and adapted by Adobe Systems Inc. The book was printed and bound at R. R. Donnelley in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Production was supervised by Susan Jeffers Casel, and manufacturing was supervised by Jess White.

 


 

  Laini Taylor, Lips Touch: Three Times

  (Series: # )

 

 


 

 
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