Today we're excited to chat with Hester Fox, author of The Witch of Willow Hall. Read on for more about Hester and her book, plus a giveaway!
Meet Hester Fox!
Two centuries after the Salem witch trials, there’s still one witch left in Massachusetts. But she doesn’t even know it.
Take this as a warning: if you are not able or willing to control yourself, it will not only be you who suffers the consequences, but those around you, as well.
New Oldbury, 1821
In the wake of a scandal, the Montrose family and their three daughters—Catherine, Lydia and Emeline—flee Boston for their new country home, Willow Hall.
The estate seems sleepy and idyllic. But a subtle menace creeps into the atmosphere, remnants of a dark history that call to Lydia, and to the youngest, Emeline.
All three daughters will be irrevocably changed by what follows, but none more than Lydia, who must draw on a power she never knew she possessed if she wants to protect those she loves. For Willow Hall’s secrets will rise, in the end…
THE WITCH OF WILLOW HALL (on-sale ) by debut author Hester Fox is part historical fiction, part fantasy, with true historical facts woven throughout the novel. Set in Boston and Northeastern Massachusetts, where the author currently resides, the novel takes place two centuries after the Salem Witch trials where there is still one Witch left in the state, but she doesn’t even know it. Compared to The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman and A Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan, with a haunting house reminiscent of Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier and other gothic classics such as Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. (106 words)
A Chat with Hester Fox:
1. What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
What inspired me to write THE WITCH OF WILLOW HALL was when I visited a historic house in New Hampshire and it was so beautiful and atmospheric I immediately knew I wanted to set a story there.
2. Who is your favorite character in the book?
This is like asking a parent who their favorite child is! I love all my characters, even the “bad guys.” Catherine was the most fun to write, as she does and says what she wants and has an overabundance of confidence.
3. Which came first, the title or the novel?
The novel. Originally I used “Willow Hall” as a placeholder name because I’m not good at coming up with titles. My publisher asked what I thought about “The Witch Of Willow Hall” and I loved it. It gives a much better idea of what the book is about.
4. What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
I love the scene where Lydia walks into the water. It was the first scene that came to me fully formed when I started writing the book.
5. Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
Nothing is ever going to be “perfect” on the page the way it is in your head. All you can do is get the story out and mold it from there.
6. What do you like most about the cover of the book?
I love the sense of movement. It feels like you could get swept away in the magic.
7. What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2018?
The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel by Alyssa Palombo
8. What was your favorite book in 2017?
I think it technically came out in early 2018, but I loved Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
9. What’s up next for you?
I’m working on a gender-flipped Beauty & The Beast inspired Gothic romance set against the back drop of Poe-mania in the 1840s.
10. Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
There was one scene in particular that was very difficult, but I don’t want to spoil anything by saying what it was!
11. Which character gave you the most trouble when writing your latest book?
The love interest, John. He’s kind of brooding and serious, but I wanted his tenderness and warm heart to come through as well.
12. Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
There’s a certain freedom when drafting because you’re just writing to get the words out. But it’s not until revisions that the story really starts to take shape. They’re both equally exciting in their own ways.
13. What would you say is your superpower?
I’m the Queen of Cozy. The rainier, colder, and generally more miserable the weather, the happier I am with my blankets/tea/books inside.
14. Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
Animal rights are very important to me, and I am especially fond of the organization Animal Aid Unlimited. They do amazing work rescuing and rehabilitating street animals in India.
I am also grateful to the Ice Bucket challenge which raised money and awareness for ALS research.
The Witch of Willow Hall
By: Hester Fox
Release Date: October 2, 2018
Five winners will receive a finished copy of The Witch of Willow Hall (US & Canada only).