Author Lois Metzger
Lois Metzger, author of A Trick of the Light, was born in Queens and has always written for young adults. She is the author of three previous novels and two nonfiction books about the Holocaust, and she has edited five anthologies. Her short stories have appeared in collections all over the world. Her writing has also appeared in The New Yorker, The Nation, and Harper’s Bazaar. She lives in Greenwich Village with her husband and son.
1. Night owl, or early bird?
Night owl. If left to my own devices, I might flip day and night entirely.
2. Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
I think you will find it speaks to you. If it doesn’t, please tell me.
3. What is your dream cast for your book?
There’s a new show called “Bates Motel” (based on Hitchcock’s “Psycho,” of course). The lead actor is Freddie Highmore. He was adorable as a young boy in “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” The first time I saw him as a teenager — tall, still adorable, kind of awkward — I thought of the main character in my book, Mike Welles.
4. What’s the craziest writing idea you’ve had?
To write a full-length novel that is one big long question, and call it “Good Question.”
5. What’s the best advice anyone has ever given you?
My husband, Tony Hiss, writer of nonfiction, said, whenever you get stuck on something while writing, “There’s always a way.”
My mother called me Miss Marie and I have absolutely no idea why. Also Shorty (and I know why). Family members and some close friends call me Lopie.
7. How do you react to a bad review?
I get upset, which is silly, I know.
8. What’s your favorite season/weather?
Cool and gray. Great weather for long walks and bike rides.
9. What is your guilty pleasure?
Lifetime movies, especially the ones based on “true stories.”
10. Favorite music?
Always and forever a Beatles fan.
11. Favorite sport?
I play softball all summer in Central Park. My brother (children’s book writer Steve Metzger) has a permit for one of the fields on the Great Lawn.
12. In your wildest dreams, which author would you love to co-author a book with?
13. TV or Movies?
Movies, especially from the 30s and 40s. Though I love TV, too. “Sherlock” with Benedict Cumberbatch is my current favorite.
14. Chocolate or Vanilla?
CHOCOLATE. (Is this a trick question?)
15. Sweet or Salty?
Both, please — chocolate-covered pretzels.
16. Favorite quote from a movie?
It’s a line at the end of Preston Sturges’s “Unfaithfully Yours.” A husband, finally realizing his wife loves him deeply and would never betray him, tells her: “A thousand poets dreamed a thousand years… and you were born, my love.”
17. What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
My father-in-law was Alger Hiss. He was at the center of what was, back in the day, “the trial of the century.”
A Trick of the Light
Mike Welles had everything under control.
He was a good student, an outfielder on the baseball team, a good son, a loyal friend. But that was before. Now things are rough at home, and they’re getting confusing at school. He’s losing his sense of direction, and he feels like a mess.
Then there’s a voice in his head. A friend, trying to help him regain control. More than that: The voice can guide him to become better and stronger than he was before, to rid his life of everything holding him back. To figure out who he is again. If only Mike will listen.
Writing with devastating power and precision, acclaimed author Lois Metzger gives us the story of one young man’s battle with his own shadows — a spare, stark, and vital tale of the way in which the things we build to protect ourselves can threaten to destroy us.
1 copy of A Trick of the Light
Open to US & Canada