(The Noctivagas Chronicle #1)
by Jason T. Graves
Paperback, Second, 324 pages
Published November 26th 2012 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Vampires aren’t real… right? If they were, Madeline and Marissa Owen would certainly be suspects: bone-white and night-loving—with a proclivity for super-rare steaks—the identical twins are poster-girls for the undead.
As if looking like teen-aged vampires didn’t cause enough drama, trouble erupts into their lives following a disastrous street fight and a brush with the law by Madeline's sister. The girls are forced to move from the diverse city of Austin, Texas to the quaint township of Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania—a move clearly designed to bore the aggressive, MMA-fighter Marissa into an early grave.
However, their new lives prove to be anything but boring, as a series of shocking upheavals, unearthed lies, and outright dangers keep them thinking... and running for their lives. Ancient books, coded manuscripts, and evil enemies emerge, challenging the unique skills and inner-strengths of the girls—but can even all of this chaos prepare them for the arrival of real vampires?
Facing threats from multiple quarters, the girls must rely on each other to keep ahead of the rising storm … or be swept away by it.
Q & A with Jason T. Graves
Q: Tell us a little bit about your main characters, Madeline and Marissa.
A: M&M are identical twin sisters who are nothing alike. Madeline is studious, conscientious, and pleasant, while Marissa is combative, competitive, and snarky. Despite their differences, they have an intangible bond and deep love for each other—they are like two sides of the same coin. Marissa sees her sister as physically vulnerable, and has spent a considerable amount of time learning to fight mixed martial arts in order to defend her, whereas Madeline intuitively recognizes Marissa’s emotional vulnerability and seeks to alleviate that burden as best she can.
They are smart, self-sufficient girls who aren’t sitting around pining for some hunky boy. That’s not to say that there isn’t romance in the story—there is—but it is atypical, and in some ways, not to be trusted. Before the book concludes, the girls find themselves in strange and threatening places, so their reactions cannot be entirely predicted. They do manage to remain true to themselves (mostly) through it all.
Q: What is your favorite part about writing?
A: The release and the creation of something beautiful and meaningful. I am one of those writers who hears the voices in their head, so letting these voices out to tell their story is good for me. I also enjoy the worlds I build and the people who populate them. I love hearing readers talk about how the characters in my books affect them and make them feel—good and bad. The fact that these people are having an emotional response and interest in something that I have created is both moving and humbling to me.
Q: Are there more books planned for the Noctivagas Chronicle series? How will you know when it is finished (or do you already know how it is going to end)?
A: Yes! The second book, MORNING STARS, was released in October of this year, while the third book, MARS RISING, is scheduled to be released next year in early summer. The Noctivagas Chronicle, as the name implies, is a story arc, divided into several books. The arc will take several years (in book) to tell, allowing the girls time to grow and mature. I know exactly how many books will comprise the arc and how it will end.
Q: Why did you decide to write a story about vampires? What is your favorite vampire story (besides your own, of course!)?
A: This story is multifaceted, so there is so much more to the characters than simply calling them vampires would suggest. I wrote it because the characters were compelling, and I wrote specifically about vampires because I had some equally compelling ideas about how vampirism could be biologically plausible. In that respect, the science behind my story is solid even though it is fantasy. I have a master’s degree in molecular genetics and I teach biology, so it was important to me to get the science right, while still telling an entertaining story.
My guilty pleasure for vampire stories is anything from Anne Rice. She is the doyenne of the modern vampire tale, and we lovers of the undead owe her a debt of gratitude for that. However, as much as I admire her vampires, I wanted to break new ground with my own story, so there isn’t much overlap between her vision of vampires and mine. As the arc proceeds, though, astute readers will notice an homage of sorts, simply because I love Anne’s work so much.
Q: What is the best advice you have been given?
A: Aside from the advice to always wear clean underwear, the best advice I’ve ever gotten was to write and write and write and write, and then write some more! And to read… everything, good and bad, so that you recognize what each looks like.
Q: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: An astronaut, which never happened. But then, I haven’t grown up yet, so there’s still hope.
Q: If you could be on one reality TV show, what would it be?
A: Well, I don’t watch TV, so I have no idea what is even on these days. If “America’s Next Famous Author” is on some network then sign me up!
Q: What book are you reading now?
A: Books, actually…
Pax in the Land of Women by Monica La Porta
Reaper’s Rhythm by Clare Davidson
Graveyard Shift by Angela Roquet
Blue on the Horizon by Rebecca Porter
I have a thing for women authors at the moment, apparently! I usually read multiple books, just as I always have several books underway in the writing process. That allows me to change books as my mood shifts.
Thanks for interviewing me!
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