An Interview with Jack Croxall

Jack Croxall - Author Photo PortraitRecently, we saw the release of the much anticipated Unwoven, the second in the Tethers trilogy.  Here the lovely author Jack Croxall talks to us about the series, his other books, X and Wye and everything in between.

For those that haven’t read them can you describe what Tethers and Unwoven are about?

Of course! Tethers is a Victorian fantasy, steampunk-y, YA-y and adventure-y series set in rural England. It follows two teenagers, Karl and Esther, across three books as they become embroiled in a conspiracy involving various otherworldly artefacts and a whole host of sinister characters. The first two books (Tethers and Unwoven) deal with themes of fate, grief and obsession.

There has much excitement about the release of Unwoven, did you feel a lot of pressure writing the second book in the series?

Not really during the writing, I was never going to change my plan – I was more worried upon actually releasing the book. Thankfully people seem happy with the darker turn the second book has taken though.

Unwoven Cover SmallI love the cover of Unwoven, what made you go with that design?

Thanks! The cover is the lighthouse at the edge of an island Karl and Esther visit. It’s supposed to be a kind of mystery as to why the lighthouse isn’t alight even though it’s night.

Who would you cast in the movie as Karl, Esther and Mr Cauldwell?


Can you give us any teasers or information about Torn, the third in the Tethers series?

Well Torn is the finale and I can say that, as well as the main cast, a few old favourites return for the last hurrah. It’s written from multiple viewpoints (not just Karl’s) too so a lot more will be revealed about certain characters.

You’ve also written X a brilliant zombie short story and are currently writing Wye a full length story that follows on from X, should we expect a Z at some point in the future?

I’m not sure. Wye is only the working title for my zombie novel, and I’ve now decided to make it virtually unrelated to X (although it takes place in the same world) so it can be read as a standalone. There might just be a few Easter eggs for anyone who’s read the short story first however.

What is it about Zombies that appeals when writing stories?

They’re everything we’re scared of becoming. Plus it’s really handy that there would be an almost endless supply of them if the Z apocalypse ever happens!

You have a brilliant sense of humour, would you ever write comedy in the future, perhaps even a ZomCom?

That’s a really nice thing to say, thank you! I don’t think so though, I love a good comedy moment but writing a whole comedy book isn’t something I can see myself doing.

Are there any other genres you would like to write or would never write?

I’d like to do a thriller, maybe a crime-y one. I actually have one on the backburner – it’s currently called Vermillion City.

If you had to endure a zombie invasion, what are your top 5 rules/tips to survive?

I’ve worried about this ever since I can remember so of course I have 5 tips for you!

1: Stay out of cities at all costs. They’re too cramped and will no doubt be infested with undead citizens. Plus, what happens if you see someone you know?!

2: Learn how to use a silent weapon; knife, bow, sword – noise means notice!!

3: Learn to live off the land where possible, tinned food will run out, fish, berries, rabbits and fruit probably won’t. You’ll end up with a super-hot bod too 😉

4: Find a secluded residence and fortify it; zoms just love to turn up uninvited.

5: NEVER go into one of the following places: tunnel, fairground, zoo, attic, school, hairdressers. You won’t even make it through to act two otherwise.

Zombies favourite food is brains, I just need to check you’ve not been attacked by zombies and had your brain devoured so here are some quick fire questions:

Write the alphabet backwards?

Erm … Z,Y,X,W … skip a few … A!

Hmmmm.    What is 100 x 1000?

Easy! Just add the zeros together: 100000

What is the capital of Australia?

Not Sydney or Melbourne. As an aficionado of pub quizzes I know it’s in fact Canberra.

What is the only manmade object you can see from space?

Oo, that’s a tough one! Is it one of those mega satellite dishes in Chile perhaps?

It’s actually the pyramids.

Have you ever eaten brains?

When I was a little kid I apparently ate a beetle whole, they have brains so I would have to answer yes!

Thanks so much for taking part in this interview Jack, but as some of your answers were not entirely correct and with your obvious liking for brains, I will be keeping an eye on you.


Here is my review of the brilliant Unwoven with buy links at the end.

First off, let me start by saying that Jack is one of those incredible writers who paints the most vivid descriptions with his words.  The settings, the people, the clothes, the trains, they all get this glorious descriptive treatment that allows you to picture it all so clearly.  His writing makes me look at my own words and think they lie flat in comparison.  I love the world that Jack creates, with his gorgeous style.  He completely sucks you in, so you soon find yourself fighting alongside Esther or cheering on Karl as he saves Esther from a fray. The characters are vivid, tangible creations that I completely fell in love with all over again.  They’ve matured here in the second book but this just made me love them all the more.  Esther is still feisty, brave and completely fearless and I love her for that

The action starts straight away too with the death of a character from the previous book. Something horrible happens with the arrival of some strange men in the village of Shraye and this starts our heroes on another exciting adventure.  Sorry If I’m being vague here, but I don’t want to give anything away, because Unwoven really is a story you need to read yourself.  We meet some great new characters in this book and Unwoven certainly didn’t lack anything with the characters that died in the previous book

The action just didn’t stop all the way through, it was a fast paced, action packed, completely riveting ride to the end.  I literally did not move from my bed whilst I read it cover to cover in one exciting, glorious sitting. I found myself screaming with frustration when it came to an end as I was desperate to read more of their adventure and we are left teetering on the brink of one hell of a cliffhanger.

I cannot wait for book three in the Tethers trilogy, Torn because I firmly believe it will be a spectacular crescendo to a wonderful story.

You need to read Unwoven now, here are the buy links

And if you haven’t read Tethers yet, you can buy that here too


You can also buy Jack’s brilliant, incredible short story X here


One comment on “An Interview with Jack Croxall

  1. Best interview I have ever read. Thanks both of you!

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