To stop Heather from getting herself killed trying to prove her parents' innocence, Becca hunts for proof of their guilt. She doesn't expect to find evidence that leaves her questioning everything she thought she knew about the dissidents... and about her mother.
When she risks her life to save a dissident, she learns her mother isn't the only one with secrets - and the plot she uncovers will threaten the lives of the people she loves most. For Becca, it's no longer just a choice between risking execution and ignoring the regime's crimes; she has to decide whose life to save and whose to sacrifice.
It's easy to be a hero when you can save the world, but what about when all you can do is choose how you live in it? THE TORTURER'S DAUGHTER is a story about ordinary life amidst the realities of living under an oppressive regime... and the extraordinary courage it takes to do what's right in a world gone wrong.
1.Please, tell us your name, the city you are born and the books you write.
I’m Zoe Cannon, and I was born in a relatively obscure town in New Jersey, in the northeastern United States, before moving to New York when I was four and New Hampshire when I was thirteen. I write dark young adult novels about outsiders, tough moral questions, and everyday heroism. My current project is the Internal Defense series, a dystopian series with more of a realistic tone than a lot of the dystopias out there.
2. How did you become a writer?
I wrote a book :) Okay, I was five years old and it was Scooby-Doo fanfiction, but it had chapters and the pages were stapled together, and in my mind that made it a book. I’ve been a writer from that moment onward.
3. Who inspired you to write?
I grew up reading any books I could get my hands on. Reading and writing were always linked in my mind – I loved to read, so naturally I wanted to create books of my own. All the authors of the books I’ve read over the years – from the picture books to the fat fantasy tomes – have inspired me to write, simply by putting their own books out into the world. Some have made me want to do what they can do. Some have made me despair of ever being as talented as them. A few have made me want to write my own books just to prove I can do a better job! But all of them have contributed in some way to my development as a writer.
4. How old were you when you wrote the first book?
I wrote The Torturer’s Daughter, the first book of the Internal Defense series, when I was 23. But for those of you who might wonder when I wrote my first novel, it was when I was 17, during NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), an annual event where everyone tries to complete a full novel during the month of November. It wasn’t a very good book, but it was the first one I ever managed to finish, and it has a special place in my heart because of that.
5. Your favorite books?
There are so many! But I suppose my top three are Warchild by Karin Lowachee, Benighted by Kit Whitfield, and Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein.
6. What inspired you to write Internal Defense?
#Book 3 soon to come
I’ve always loved dystopian fiction, even before it gained the popularity it has today. With the Internal Defense series, I wanted to create a realistic-feeling dystopian world, one that would evoke the feeling of real-world totalitarian governments, while also making it very similar to our own world to highlight the differences between the characters’ world and ours. I also wanted to explore what ordinary life would look like in a dystopian world – what happens when, for example, the government’s best torturer is also trying to maintain a relationship with her daughter, and people go to school and deal with normal school drama at the same time as living with the horror of people disappearing in the middle of the night for having the wrong opinions.
7. How about the covers? Who came up with the idea for them?
I actually designed the covers myself – with help from my husband, who has a knack for coming up with just the right suggestion when I can’t get a cover to work.
Right now I’m working on the third and final book about Becca Dalcourt, the main character of The Torturer’s Daughter and Necessary Sacrifices. I also have a novella set in the world of the Internal Defense series that will be released on September 13th of this year as part of a dystopian anthology called Darkest Worlds. After I finish the book I’m working on now, I have another Internal Defense novel to write, featuring an entirely new cast of characters, plus a fairy retelling for another anthology.
9.A message for your fans?
When I started writing these books, they were just for me. I had no idea there were other people out there who would enjoy the strange creations of my mind. It means a lot to be able to share these stories with all of you, and to know that other people can appreciate my craziness after all.