Wednesday, October 15, 2014

YA Horror/Thriller Spooktacular Day 11 - Blood of My Blood

Contemporary horror/thriller novels are not as common as one might think, especially in YA, and for some reason serial killers?  Also not big in YA.  I wonder why. For the interview today I have an author who writes about serial killers and to top it all of is also a dude (for some reason there seem to be a lack of dudes in YA horror).  Just who am I talking about?  The wonderful New York TImes bestseller Barry Lyga, that's who!  Give him a huge welcome and check out the answers he gave!

Peace, Love, Teen Fiction:  I’m sure you’ve done this a dozen times before, but in 15 of your own words or less would you describe your Jasper Dent series?

Barry Lyga:  What if your father was the world's most notorious serial killer?

PLTF:  Jasper’s father is “the world’s worst serial killer” (wow, that’s a pretty prestigious title), did you base him on any real life killers?

BL:  I didn't want Billy to seem like any one real-world killer. I envision him studying serial killers the way artists study the great masters. So he incorporates techniques from each. He's sort of an amalgam of many serial killers.

PLTF:  When you were brainstorming what was the weirdest way you came up with to kill a character?

BL:  I think injecting them with drain cleaner was pretty weird!

PLTF:  Where do you come up with the names of your serial killers?

BL:  Good question! I just started riffing one day, throwing out ideas. I kept the ones that seemed either really eerie or slightly silly. If you think about it, a name like "Son of Sam" is sort of silly, until you know the context. I wanted some of my names to be similar. "Hand-in-Glove" (one of Billy's aliases) is kind of absurd...until you know it's the name of a serial killer.

PLTF:  What’s next?

BL:  I have a great middle-grade novel coming out in early 2016. Beyond that, I cannot say!

Lightning round
1. On a scale of 1 to 10 how scary is your book?

I really think "scary" is in the eye of the beholder.

2. If you were a character in your book would you survive?

Probably not. I mean, I know a lot about serial killers, but at the end of the day, if someone really, REALLY wants to kill you, they probably will.

3. Favorite scary movie?

Believe it or not, the one that sticks with me is the Blair Witch Project.

4. Favorite Halloween candy?

I love those little Tootsie Rolls.

5. What were you last year for Halloween or what do you plan on being this year?

I haven't dressed up for Halloween in years. Sorry.

This or That
 1. Serial killers or dead bodies?

Dead bodies -- they can't hurt you!

2. Solve the crime or commit it?

Solve it.

3. Psychopaths or sociopaths?

Psychopaths. You might be able to play on their psychosis to get away.

4. Blood or guts?


5. Trick or Treat?



Jasper "Jazz" Dent is a likable teenager. A charmer, one might say.

But he's also the son of the world's most infamous serial killer, and for Dear Old Dad, Take Your Son to Work Day was year-round. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could—from the criminal's point of view.

And now bodies are piling up in Lobo's Nod.

In an effort to clear his name, Jazz joins the police in a hunt for a new serial killer. But Jazz has a secret—could he be more like his father than anyone knows?


I Hunt Killers introduced the world to Jazz, the son of history’s most infamous serial killer, Billy Dent.

In an effort to prove murder didn’t run in the family, Jazz teamed with the police in the small town of Lobo’s Nod to solve a deadly case. And now, when a determined New York City detective comes knocking on Jazz’s door asking for help, he can’t say no. The Hat-Dog Killer has the Big Apple–and its police force–running scared. So Jazz and his girlfriend, Connie, hop on a plane to the big city and get swept up in a killer’s murderous game.

BLOOD OF MY BLOOD (Highlight for synopsis as it contains spoilers for GAME)

Jazz Dent has been shot and left to die in New York City. His girlfriend Connie is in the clutches of Jazz's serial killer father, Billy. And his best friend Howie is bleeding to death on the floor of Jazz's own home in tiny Lobo's Nod. Somehow, these three must rise above the horrors their lives have become and find a way to come together in pursuit of Billy. But then Jazz crosses a line he's never crossed before, and soon the entire country is wondering: "Like father, like son?" Who is the true monster?
The chase is on, and beyond Billy there lurks something much, much worse. Prepare to meet...the Crow King.

Find I Hunt Killers on

Find Game on

Find Blood of My Blood on

Called a “YA rebel-author” by Kirkus Reviews, Barry Lyga has published fourteen novels in various genres in his nine-year career, including the New York Times bestselling I Hunt Killers. His books have been or are slated to be published in a dozen different languages in North America, Australia, Europe, and Asia.
After graduating from Yale with a degree in English, Lyga worked in the comic book industry before quitting to pursue his lifelong love of writing. In 2006, his first young adult novel, The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, was published to rave reviews, including starred reviews from Booklist andSchool Library JournalPublishers Weekly named Lyga a “Flying Start” in December 2006 on the strength of the debut.
His second young adult novel, Boy Toy, received starred reviews in SLJPublishers Weekly, and KirkusVOYA gave it its highest critical rating, and the Chicago Tribune called it “…an astounding portrayal of what it is like to be the young male victim.” His third novel, Hero-Type, according to VOYA “proves that there are still fresh ideas and new, interesting story lines to be explored in young adult literature.”
Since then, he has also written Goth Girl Rising (the sequel to his first novel), as well as the Archvillain series for middle-grade readers and the graphic novel Mangaman (with art by Colleen Doran).
His latest series is I Hunt Killers, called by the LA Times “one of the more daring concepts in recent years by a young-adult author” and an “extreme and utterly alluring narrative about nature versus nurture.” The first book landed on both the New York Times and USAToday bestsellers lists, and the series has been optioned for television by Warner Bros./Silver Pictures.
Lyga lives and writes in New York City. His comic book collection is a lot smaller than it used to be, but is still way too big.
Find Barry on
I also want to note that at this point in time I Hunt Killers AND Game e-books are both on sale on all platforms so go purchase them now if you're interested!!!


  1. Mary DeBorde
    I don't know why but in this context *take your son to work day* struck me as hysterically funny (any author with a great sense of humor and a love of Tootsie Rolls is tops in my book lol <3 )

  2. I just finished Game this morning and I need to get Blood of My Blood right away!! This series is so good. I love how it screws with my mind.
    Great interview! I'd been wondering about the serial killer names as well :)