Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Truly, Madly, Deadly by Hannah Jayne. Truly, Madly, Deadly will be released on July 2, 2013 from Sourcebooks Fire. My stop today features a guest post with Hannah Jayne.
Sawyer Dodd has it all. She's a star track athlete, choir soloist, and A-student. And her boyfriend is the handsome all-star Kevin Anderson. But behind the medals, prom pictures, and perfect smiles, Sawyer finds herself trapped in a controlling, abusive relationship with Kevin. When he dies in a drunk-driving accident, Sawyer is secretly relieved. She's free. Until she opens her locker and finds a mysterious letter signed by "an admirer" and printed with two simple words: "You're welcome."
Thrillers or Secrets
Hi Ellen! Thanks for having me on Always YA at Heart. I am so excited to be bringing my newest book,Truly, Madly, Deadly to you and your readers! And a little secret? I have always been YA at heart, too!
So, I’m addicted to thrillers. Reading them, watching them, writing them. I’m obsessed with true crime television, and am currently procrastinating to the entire lineup on the Investigation Discovery channel. I love to be scared and I love to follow the tangled web of lies that thrillers thrive on. Is there anything better than a character peering up into the darkened hallway, clutching the phone to her chest – only to learn that the call is coming from inside the house?!
I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t drawn to stories that were clearly meant to terrify. Remember the old urban legends that went around and around and around? I grew up in a big city, but my little corner of it functioned like a small town – everyone knew each other, had lived there for years, and had the stories to prove it. We all knew the stories; we each had heard them a dozen times but we still slunk into our sleeping bags, just our heads poking out as someone relayed the tale of the abandoned insane asylum at the top of Hick’s Road.
Nobody ever went up Hick’s Road. There wasn’t any reason to – it was unkempt and windy, and nothing remained there except a rusting hurricane fence and the bare-bone remains of an old hospital. An old insane asylum.
It was ages ago – sometimes in the forties or fifties. San Jose was in its heyday, just starting to boom with agriculture and urban sprawl but the mayor – no one can quite remember his name – wanted San Jose to be so much more. He touted the city as a glittering example of the American dream: health and wealth in the Valley of the Heart’s delight. But there were problems – transients, the mentally ill. They were a blight on the mayor’s clean town so he commissioned an asylum, tucked far away from the town center. He had it built in the thick forest at the top of Hick’s Road but everything from the construction to the location to the very existence of the asylum was a secret. A doctor came in from London to run the place and at first, no one was the wiser -- because no one could hear the screams.
It seems the doctor had been kicked out of London and kicked out of psychiatry altogether for his radical ideas on “curing” mental illness with surgeries and shock therapy. The tucked away asylum was the perfect place to conduct his studies. He tortured people there.
The story diverges here – some people say he created an army of zombies with botched lobotomies. Others say he was a witch doctor who buried his patients alive. Some say the patients were albinos and people feared their colorless skin. But the story always ends the same: whatever it was that the doctor was doing was working, but not like he thought. The patients were getting stronger, smarter, and sneakier. They watched him lock their doors at night. They watched him as they were led off to the “therapy” room. And one day, they stood up together.
No one goes up Hick’s Road because late at night, you can still hear the doctor screaming.
Does anyone else have a home-grown urban legend to share? I'll get in my sleeping bag...
Hannah Jayne, author
Hannah is the author of the UNDERWORLD DETECTION AGENCY CHRONICLES from Kensington books and the upcoming young adult thrillers TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY and SEE JANE RUN available from Sourcebooks, Inc. When she's not battling the demons of the Underworld or tackling a murderer at Hawthorne High, Jayne kicks her feet up in her San Francisco bay area home and attempts to share couch space with two enormous cats.