Apr 26, 2010

Interview with Beth Fantaskey, author of Jekel Love Hyde

I am so pleased to welcome the awesome and amazing Beth Fantaskey to Tattooed Books! Beth is the mastermind behind the terrific Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side (my review) and the soon to be released Jekel Loves Hyde (May 3rd, Harcourt Children's Books). She's worked all kinds of jobs, but her favorite by far is being a Young Adult author. A part-time professor at Susquehanna University, you can hopefully catch her on tour this spring! Without further adieu I give you, her interview.
  1. What do you consider your main genre? Urban fantasy, paranormal teen,etc.?

Although I didn’t know much about genres – aside from the two broad categories of “mystery” and “romance” – when I wrote Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side, I would say I’m now a paranormal, young adult, romance author. I don’t know if that will always be my genre, but I’m happy there now!

  1. What do you think about these new classics with a twist (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Jane Slayre, etc)? Do you think your novels, while not as direct a replication as these, are considered under this umbrella?

I am honestly not sure... I haven’t read either of those yet. In fact, I hadn’t heard of Jane Slayre – although the title definitely made me laugh out loud when I just read it. I love it!

If I had to take a guess, though, based on what I do know about Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, I would say Jekel Loves Hyde is different in that it’s not so much a retelling or parody of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as it is a novel about two young people whose families were influenced by the original work. It’s a modern day interpretation, and there is the element of a personality changing formula in there, but aside from that the plots are very different.

  1. What made you choose the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for your novel?

One day this phrase – Jekel Loves Hyde – sort of flashed through my brain, and I liked it so much that I hurried to see if anyone had ever used it as a title. When I realized there had never really been any kind of young adult adaption of the story, I started thinking that it would be interesting to show how a shy, young girl’s life might be changed by exposure to a dangerous, personality-altering formula. I especially loved the idea of setting the story in a high school because your teen years are all about discovering who you are. Given a choice, would a very introverted, moral girl choose to stay good – or succumb to the temptation to be wild and bad?

  1. What was your favorite part about writing Jekel Loves Hyde?

I liked writing the parts in which quiet Jill Jekel unleashes her aggressive, vengeful alter ego. I’m a very shy, rule-following person, myself, and it was fun to imagine what it would be like to shed every inhibition and break every rule, just for the heck of it, without any regret or fear of repercussions.

  1. After Jessicas Guide to Dating on the Dark Side you took their story to the online world. Are you planning to do something similar with Jill and Tristen?

No, I don’t think so... I think Jill and Tristen’s future will remain in the imaginations of readers. It’s definitely more of a “stand alone” book than Jessica’s Guide.

  1. You love to travel the world, any plan to go on tour with your books (both locally or internationally)?

I am starting to get a pretty full travel schedule this spring. Over the course of May and June, I’ll be signing books in San Diego, San Francisco, Chicago, Toronto, New York, New Jersey, and Miami – not to mention closer to my home in Pennsylvania. I’ll start posting my schedule on my website,, as well as on Twitter, Facebook and MySpace in the next week or so.

I would love to go abroad, too, if I ever had the opportunity. Jessica’s Guide is available now in several different countries, so we’ll see!

  1. Anything else you’d like to tell your readers? (Words of advice, hints about new projects, random facts)

I just want to say thanks to everybody who e-mails and checks in with me on Facebook, etc. So far, the best part of writing novels has been interacting with all of the amazing readers. I never expected to make friends around the world just because I wrote a few books, but that’s definitely the case. To everybody who’s taken the time to contact me – THANK YOU so much!! And keep in touch! And to all of you who’ve asked about a full sequel to Jessica’s Guide – I promise, I’m still working on it!

Thank you Beth! Be sure to check back tomorrow for my review of Jekel Loves Hyde!


YA Vampire Books said...

Great interview! I haven't had the chance to read anything by Beth yet, but both her books sound awesome and are on top of my wishlist! :)

Emily said...

I thought JEKEL LOVES HYDE looked like a really interesting book. I can't wait to get a copy!