Following the publication of the second book of The Nevernight Chronicles, Godsgrave, I had the chance to catch up with author Jay Kristoff and ask him a few questions. A big thank you to Jay for answering my questions, and to Lara Wallace for facilitating the interview!
1) The Nevernight Chronicles are extremely dark, with a deft touch of morbid humour. Do you have any books or writers that have particularly inspired this taste for the shadows?
I started reading Stephen King when I was ten, so it’s all his fault, really. I was a big horror fan in my youth, I read a lot of Clive Barker, Dean Koontz, those kind of guys. I was a mad Anne Rice fan, too. The morbid humor is all me, though.
2) Mia's world seems to be quite inspired by Italy - could you talk about the importance of Italy to you?
Italy is one of my favorite countries in the entire world. My wife and I got married in Rome, we go back there every 5 years. Venice is probably my favorite city on the planet, and studying Ancient Roman history is one of my favorite pastimes. If you need someone to bore your dinner party guests with hour long conversations about the Julian dynasty, I’m your guy.
3) Throughout Nevernight and Godsgrave, there is a narrator of sorts stringing things together, giving the reader little asides and footnotes. Is this narrator based on you, or perhaps another character of your own creation?
The narrator is a character you’ve already met in the books. No clues as to who it might be though – you find out in book 3!
4) You have talked before about letting your characters take the lead sometimes - do you find Mia, in particular, to be fairly... headstrong in how she wants her story to be told?
Definitely. Writing the end of Nevernight was one of the hardest experiences of my career. I struggled with it for months. I had a definite idea of how the book should end, but I couldn’t make it work. But as soon as I threw that idea away and let Mia go where she wanted, I finished the book in a couple of weeks.
She knows what she wants :)
5) If you were Darkin (for all I know, you are... perhaps I will keep a sharp eye on your shadow if I ever meet you!), what form do you think your shadow-friend would take?
Awesome question. I’d like to say Wolf, because that’s kinda badass. But I imagine it’d be something like a Jack Russell Terrier :P
6) I really REALLY want to talk about things that happen in Godsgrave, because ARGHHH, but in the interests of not spoiling the ride for readers, let me just ask: are you enjoying your time with these characters? (I am so excited and sad that there is one more book to go...)
GODSGRAVE was amazing to write, yes! Normally book 2 is a struggle to write, but for some reason, GG was just great fun. I think changing the setting helped, and I knew I had some massive revalations in the pipeline that would make a big ending. But the characters I met along the way, and watching Mia grow as a character was enormous fun.
And finally, some quick questions!
What are your current favourites?
I’m currently reading WARCROSS by the amazing Marie Lu!
Jack Daniels for life.
...loving about the current season?It’s spring down here, so it’s pretty badass all the way.
Thanks so much for taking the time to answer these questions Jay!
Godsgrave: The Nevernight Chronicles, Book #2 is published by HarperCollins Australia and available at all good bookstores and online.