Saturday, August 22, 2009
Traveling to Teens Tour- Another Faust by Daniel and Dina Nayeri
Another Faust by Daniel and Dina Nayeri
One night, in cities all across Europe, five children vanish — only to appear, years later, at an exclusive New York party with a strange and elegant governess. Rumor and mystery follow the Faust teenagers to the city’s most prestigious high school, where they soar to suspicious heights with the help of their benefactor’s extraordinary "gifts." But as the students claw their way up — reading minds, erasing scenes, stopping time, stealing power, seducing with artificial beauty — they start to suffer the sideeffects of their own addictions. And as they make further deals with the devil, they uncover secrets more shocking than their most unforgivable sins. At once chilling and wickedly satirical, this contemporary reimagining of the Faustian bargain is a compelling tale of ambition, consequences, and ultimate redemption.
Another Faust is a true page-turner and a great contemporary update to a classic story. The Nayeris have done a fantastic job crafting this story, making the prose compelling and dark, and the characters are all three-dimensional (at least until their desires consume them). This book is just such a wonderful, dark, cautionary tale and I would seriously recommend it to pretty much anyone. The ending had me on the edge of my seat and my heart racing- I couldn't have seen it coming how the book ended, but it felt so right. Simply a really great debut novel! Can't wait to read more from these two.
Interview with Daniel and Dina Nayeri
(Photo helpfully resized by Kelsey)
1. What was it like working together, being brother and sister? Was there a lot of bickering and the usual sibling problems during the writing process?
Well, we’re brother and sister, so yeah, there was a lot of fighting. We both have very strong personalities, and we think differently. Dina’s more of a planner, Daniel’s more spontaneous. So we just learned to work together. The thing about being siblings is that you just can’t dump the other one, so you have to work it out! Here’s a video of one of our arguments though (I think this was the moment right before I may or may not have dropped Daniel’s toothbrush in the toilet.)
2. With the title "Another Faust" and with the summary, there's an obvious connection to the original tale of Faust. How much did you look toward the original tale for inspiration, if at all?
We did read the original works (and we’ve both studied them in college, especially Daniel), but with “Another Series” we want to focus each retelling on the main theme of the original work, while attaching our own plot and characters. So the main source of our inspiration (within Marlowe’s or Goethe’s Faust) was the concept and the less tangible features, rather than the plot.
3. Will you two continue to work together, or do you plan on doing separate books after this? Or maybe even both?
Both! The second book in Another Series (Another Pan) is being edited right now and we’re talking about future books in this series, and a new series as well. Plus we’re both working on our own individual books.
4. What brought you two to the YA genre? Have you both always been fans of it, or are you still new to it?
We’ve both read and loved many YA books and it seemed natural to us to write a book in a genre that fascinated us so much growing up (and even as adults). But more importantly, when the idea for Another Faust came to us, we realized that given our teenage characters and fantasy plot, YA was exactly the right place for it. Teenagers have a kind of imagination and ability to suspend disbelief that many adults don’t, and so it’s much more fun to write YA!