Thursday, December 7, 2017

2017 Debut Authors Bash - Interview and Giveaway: Tracey Neithercott of Gray Wolf Island

2017 Debut Authors Bash banner
The Debut Authors Bash is an event where bloggers are paired with a debut author to spread their awesomeness on their blog. It is a month-long event so be sure to check out the full schedule here!
Hello everyone! I'm so excited to welcome author Tracey Neithercott to the blog today to talk about her debut novel, Gray Wolf Island! Check out Tracey's very thoughtful answers to our interview and don't forget to enter for a chance to win a copy of her book!
Gray Wolf Island by Tracey Neithercott
Gray Wolf Island
by Tracey Neithercott
October 10, 2017
336 pages

Goodreads     Indigo
Goodreads Summary:
Right before Sadie died, she begged her sister, Ruby, to do the one thing she could never do herself: Find the treasure on Gray Wolf Island.

With just a mysterious treasure map as a guide, Ruby reluctantly allows some friends to join her on the hunt, each of whom is touched by magic: a boy allegedly born to a virgin, a girl who never sleeps, a boy who can foresee his own death, and a boy with deep ties to the island. Each of them is also keeping a secret—something they’ll have to reveal in order to reach the treasure.

As the secrets come to light, Ruby will have to decide: Can she make peace with her friends’ troubled pasts and continue to trust them? Can she forgive herself for doing the unspeakable? Deep in the wilderness of Gray Wolf Island, Ruby’s choices will determine if they make it out with the treasure—or merely with their lives.

From debut author Tracey Neithercott comes a darkly compelling tale of profound friendship, adventure, and finding the strength to tell the truth.


1) How did you come up with the title Gray Wolf Island? Was it what you thought it was going to be?
I had these great thoughts about creating a title that was strange and beautiful and profound—the sort of thing you see on a shelf and have to read because it’s flat-out amazing. But in what was probably a fit of laziness, I named the first draft Gray Wolf Island after the setting. Through each draft, it stuck around. By the time it reached my editor, it had became less a title of convenience and more a title that just…fit. In the book, Gray Wolf Island is a thing of mystery and magic, of strange happenings that aren’t quite right or of this world. That’s sort of how I see the book, too.

2) What was the easiest and hardest part about writing this book?

The easiest part of writing any book for me has to be crafting the characters, the setting, and the dialogue. Those are also the elements I have the most fun creating. It’s a bit like pulling a memory or vision from my mind and putting it on paper.

The hardest, by far, is the actual writing. I have a severe case of perfectionism, so I’m very critical with myself as I write that first draft. It can be agonizing, fighting my inner editor, fighting my desire to tinker until it’s perfect, fighting my doubts and fears. I envy writers who can sit down and pump out thousands of words in a sitting. For me, the act of writing a first draft is a painful, miserable thing made bearable by the fact that, eventually, the book must end. And then, mercifully, the fun (revision!) begins.

3) How did you come up with the five characters? Do you have a favourite?

I created the main characters very deliberately. I knew this book would be about the characters and their friendship, even more than it’s about a treasure hunt, so I wanted people who would force each other to grow and change. That led me to these five kids—each so different from the other, who somehow, despite all that, become the forever kind of friends.

But I can’t possibly pick a favorite! I love them all for different reasons: Ruby for her devotion to her sister, Charlie for his sense of adventure, Gabe for his determination to be better than he is, Anne for her optimism and ability to see the best in others, and Elliot for the heart beneath his prickly exterior.
4) If you could choose one character from any book, who would you have to help Ruby and her friends? Why?

Oh this is a fun question! Well, Gray Wolf Island is about a treasure hunt, so it’d probably be useful to include someone who can decipher and follow clues. I’m currently reading Laura Ruby’s York, a middle grade novel about a trio of kids following a cipher. Any one of them would be a great addition to the treasure-hunting team.
5) What do you hope readers will take away from the story?

The first spark of an idea I had for Gray Wolf Island arrived as three words: life-changing friendship. As much as I love a good love story (and I really, really do), sometimes book friends get lost and forgotten in favor of romance. I hope readers come away from Gray Wolf Island with a sense of the ways friendship can shape a life.

I also hope the book sparks a sense of adventure in readers. Like Ruby, I was pretty non-adventurous as a teen, but I met some amazing friends and had some once-in-a-lifetime adventures. I hope readers are inspired to do the same.

Thanks so much for having me, Eileen!

Thank YOU so much Tracey for being on the blog today and for answering my questions! I love how important friendship is to you and your book :)
Tracey NeithercottAuthor Bio:
Tracey Neithercott’s first book was written by hand and illustrated with some really fancy colored pencils. It was highly acclaimed by her mother. Now, she writes YA stories of friendship, love, murder, and magic. (None of which she illustrates—you’re welcome.) She lives in Massachusetts with her husband, who suggests improving her novels by adding Star Wars characters.

She is the author of GRAY WOLF ISLAND, a YA novel about the truth, a treasure, and five teens searching for both. Coming fall 2017 from Knopf/Random House.

Check out the rest of the #17DABash HERE!!


  1. Great interview, I'm so excited for this book!

    Thanks for sharing,
    ~Brittany @ Brittany's Book Rambles

    1. Thanks Brittany! I was so excited reading her answers XD

  2. Friendship and treasure hunting sound quite good!

  3. I love stories that focus on friendship! We need more of them! Plus hunting for a treasure - perfect mix!!!! I need to read this book soon!!!


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