|photo: Kate Pierce
S.A. Hunt is the author of the Malus Domestica horror-action series from Tor Books, beginning with Burn the Dark and I Come with Knives; the third book, The Hellion, was just released. Hunt is an Afghanistan veteran, a coffee enthusiast, a fervent bicyclist and she lives in Petoskey, Mich.
On your nightstand now:
Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton. A stylish and wry take on the zombie apocalypse, by way of The Jungle Book. This was an impulse read after seeing my friend Kate enjoy it so much, and I did as well.
Favorite book when you were a child:
I had this very elderly double edition of Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz. You finished reading one story, you flipped it over and started reading the other story from the back. I actually had two books like these; the other book was The Jungle Book and Rikki-Tikki-Tavi. At the time, they were the only books I owned, and I read them cover to cover a hundred times.
Your top five authors:
Stephen King: The master.
Joe Hill: The apprentice. With the Sith, there are always two.
Chuck Wendig: One of my favorite people and writer-friends. A profoundly good guy.
Christopher Ruz: My favorite indie author. A monumental talent.
David Wong: If Wong's books were a food, it would be something you'd catch me sneakily eating out of the fridge in the middle of the night.
Book you've faked reading:
This is a tough one. I can't think of any off the top of my head; I'm not usually in the habit of telling people I've done something if I haven't, and I don't tell other people they should do something if I'm not willing to do it myself.
However, I've been asked to review an army of indie novels, and I have to admit that some of them were unfinishable, and I gave the authors feedback anyway, based on what I'd read. But I don't generally have a policy of leaving a public review on a book I didn't finish, simply because (a) I don't believe in reviewing a book I haven't read, and (b) I'm a believer in "praise in public, punish in private," and I don't want to publicly drag any decent people that'd come to me with their book in good faith.
Book you're an evangelist for:
Ian Baker's The Heart of the World: A Tibetan Journey. It was my personal bible for a while. I read it multiple times, something I never do with any other book besides perhaps my own. It's about a National Geographic explorer that goes rogue looking for Shangri-La in the Himalayas while on the run from the Chinese army.
Book you've bought for the cover:
Chuck Wendig's Blackbirds. The original high-contrast stylized art just really grabbed ahold of me.
Book you hid from your parents:
My mom never actively forbade me from reading any kind of novels. But when I was a kid, I bought an issue of Cracked magazine that had an article graphically tallying up all of Jason Voorhees's kills from Friday the 13th, and my mom went through the magazine and meticulously redacted every reference to sex or violence, then gave it back to me.
Book that changed your life:
Stephen King's On Writing. It taught me a hell of a lot. As the inestimable Alan Jackson sang:
I learned how to swim and I learned who I was
A lot about livin' and a little 'bout love
Favorite line from a book:
"The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed." --Stephen King, The Gunslinger
Five books you'll never part with:
Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook. Don't leave home without it.
My The Adventure Zone graphic novels. You're going to be amazing. Best podcast, hands down.
My signed copy of Josh Malerman's Unbury Carol--Josh is just the coolest dude. I met him once a couple of years ago when he brought his Unbury Carol stage show tour to Petoskey.
My signed copy of Chuck Wendig's Wanderers. Just. Yeah. A gargantuan book by a gargantuan man. Absolutely stellar and a prized possession.
The original self-published edition of my Tor series, Malus Domestica. Ahh, memories.
Book you most want to read again for the first time:
Stephen King's Dark Tower series. The greatest literary journey I've ever undertaken in my life, and the inspiration for my own gunslinger fantasy series.
(And if you have any questions you'd like to ask me, consider this an invitation to hit me up on Twitter at @authorsahunt or on Facebook! I love talking to fans and potential fans alike!)