I am so excited to be a part of the Hushed blog tour, with thanks to Entangled Publishing and Stacey O'Neal, and even more excited to present this small Q & A with author, Kelley York!
I read Hushed recently and loved it - you can read my review here. I felt so emotionally connected to Kelley's characters that I was almost chewing my nails off I was so tense, waiting to see how it would all play out! But without further ado, the interview!
Hi Kelley! For readers who are new to HUSHED, how would you describe it?
Thanks so much for having me! HUSHED is a dark young adult (new adult?) thriller about a boy who kills for the girl he’s been in love with forever, up until he meets and starts to fall for a boy who makes him rethink all the decisions he’s made in his life.
What, if anything, inspired the writing of HUSHED?
Archer himself. I’m very character-oriented, so the idea of Archer came to me first. I build the characters up and figure them out, then let the plot build itself around them. I’m terribly at outlining plots ahead of time, so 80% of HUSHED just came to me as I wrote.
HUSHED covers some hefty and dark themes, such as rape and murder. What are your thoughts on the views that some YA titles are too dark for teens? Why do you think teens should have darker books, like HUSHED, to choose to read?
Teens aren’t stupid. They’re smart enough to know the difference between right and wrong, and I think it’s important that teens are allowed to explore the darker parts of life and, frankly, I’d rather they did it through movies, music, or the pages of a book than experience it firsthand. Of course, I also think some teens are more fragile than, and not as capable of handling certain subjects, as others their age. This is where parents need to step in and be parents by monitoring what their kids read (or be willing to read things along with them and discuss). I think the parents who want to ban every dark/edgy book out there are lazy by expecting the publishing industry to do their job for them.
What are some books you loved as a teenager? Are there any titles you’ve read now that you wish you could’ve read as a teen?
Sadly, my teen years weren’t filled with much reaching. My grade-school years were, though. But I wish I’d gotten to read books like Laurie Halse Anderson’s SPEAK, Jay Asher’s 13 REASONS WHY, or anything by Hannah Moskowitz. I think I would’ve connected to those books and their gorgeous writing.
A bit of a fun, non-bookish question! If you could travel to any time period, past or future, which would it be…AND…if you could take any one person, dead or alive, with you, who would it be and why?
I’d take my wife and go back to the sixties so we could experience Beatlemania first-hand!
Thanks so much, Kelley, for taking the time to answer my questions!
Within young adult, she enjoys writing and reading a variety of genres from contemporary with a unique twist, psychological thrillers, paranormal/urban fantasy and horror. She loves stories where character development takes center stage.
Find Kelley on her website, Twitter and Facebook.
Hushed - Synopsis:
Eighteen-year-old Archer couldn't protect his best friend, Vivian, from what happened when they were kids, so he's never stopped trying to protect her from everything else. It doesn't matter that Vivian only uses him when hopping from one toxic relationship to another - Archer is always there, waiting to be noticed.
Then along comes Evan, the only person who's ever cared about Archer without a single string attached. The harder he falls for Evan, the more Archer sees Vivian for the manipulative hot-mess she really is.
But Viv has her hooks in deep, and when she finds out about the murders Archer's committed and his relationship with Evan, she threatens to turn him in if she doesn't get what she wants...And what she wants is Evan's death, and for Archer to forfeit his last chance at redemption.
Purchase Hushed at Amazon, Barnes & Noble or The Book Depository.