I’m a sucker for speculative fiction, so how could I pass up the opportunity to chat with Jenna Black about her new novel Nightstruck?
In Nightstruck, Becket is an ordinary teenage girl, wrestling with the upheaval of her parents’ divorce. That all changes the night she tries to save an innocent life and everything goes horribly wrong.
Nightstruck released from Tor Teen on April 5. Take a peek behind the scenes in our Q&A with Jenna Black below – then keep scrolling to enter to win a copy!
Tell us a little bit about Becket! What’s she like? Is she a fighter? A thinker? A little of both?
She’s a little bit of both. She’s naturally introverted and doesn’t have a whole lot of confidence in herself. She’s very responsible, but she sometimes resents it and wants to be what she considers a “normal” teenager. But when things start going wrong in the city, she doesn’t hesitate to take action.
In Nightstruck, magic seems to work a little like a drug in how it lures in Becket, but it’s dangerous to most mortals. How exactly does magic work in your world? Where did the idea stem from?
There are some ways in which the magic in my world really does act sort of like a drug. However, it’s only attractive to certain kinds of people: those who are selfish, lack empathy, or believe the world owes them something. Becket isn’t particularly susceptible to the magic—at least not at first. But when things start getting seriously bad in her life, the magic—and the ability to escape from her conscience—starts looking a whole lot more attractive.
Becket needs to save her family and her friends, including her best friend and her best friend’s boyfriend (whom she may or may not have a crush on). Tell us a little about them! Which were your favorites to write?
I had a lot of fun writing Becket’s best friend, Piper. I always enjoy writing characters who are neither clearly good guys nor clearly bad guys. Piper is not a bad person, but she’s very self-absorbed and a bit tone deaf about how her actions and words affect others. Becket loves and envies her, even though Piper is often inconsiderate and causes her all kinds of trouble. But when the city begins to change and the magic starts taking over, Piper is very drawn to it, and that accentuates all her worst qualities. She is not the same character at the end of the book as she was at the beginning.
How close are Becket’s family and friends to her? With magic luring her in, can she really trust them – and can they really trust her?
Becket used to be very close to her father, before her parents divorced. She lives with her dad, but the two of them have been drifting apart. She misses the relationship they used to have before her dad became bitter and angry. However, despite all the tension between them, there’s also a lot of love, and each is fiercely protective of the other. Becket’s very close to Piper at the beginning of the story, although their relationship is on unequal footing—Piper is the most popular girl in school and has lots of friends. Becket considers Piper her best friend, but she knows that to Piper, Becket is just one friend among many. That relationship begins to change and sour as Piper is every more drawn to the Night Magic.
What else do you want readers to know about Nightstruck?
Nightstruck is not for the faint at heart—and is definitely not something to read in the dark of night when you’re alone in your home. There are a few places where I scared myself when I was writing it, and I hope those places have the same effect on my readers.
What books do you recommend readers sink their teeth into while they wait for Nightstruck to release?
I would highly recommend Anna Dressed in Blood. Very creepy, with very likeable characters and great ghost story.
Fill out the form below to enter to win a copy of Nightstruck by Jenna Black. Giveaway prizes donated by Tor Teen. Open to entrants in the U.S. only. Void where prohibited.