Vampires will never go out of style. That is something that Jay Kristoff is very clear about. For this reason, the Australian writer explains to The vanguard that “I will always bet on them. Not exclusively for taste, but because these creatures allow us to explore many aspects of humanity.” The author has already given the genre a twist with the Nunca Noche saga, which has become a publishing phenomenon, and now he is back in bookstores with vampire empire (Nocturna editions), the first installment of his new trilogy.
This installment, which in its original English version slipped into the lists of best books of 2021 on platforms such as Amazon and in prestigious bookstore chains such as Barnes & Nobles and Waterstones, stars Gabriel de León, the last member of the Silver Order, dedicated to defending the kingdom and the church before the vampires wiped out almost all of humanity. Sentenced to death for the murder of the vampire king, de León is forced to tell the story of his life.
After the success of ‘Nunca Noche’, his previous saga, Kristoff returns to give the genre a twist
“I think the book reflects well how ruthless good can become to face evil. When you face a monster you have to be careful if you don’t want to become someone else and know how far you are willing to go. This is a reflection that I try to question almost daily in my daily life. That’s why I think I tend to create characters that are anti-heroes. I don’t believe in the typical luminous being that appears in every epic fantasy. I’m interested in characters who, although they may be good people deep down, find themselves in terrible situations and therefore end up being forced to do bad things. I was always in favor of ambiguity and moving between the greys”.
It is Kristoff’s most extensive work to date, “not only in terms of characters but also in complexity. I think that five years ago he could not have written something like that. He has certainly put my authoring skills to the test but I think he has been worth it.” Of course, he admits, it is inevitable that this satisfaction generates some pressure when I write something new, but I do not let it affect me. When I get to the desk I just try to do my best. And that is what he, he assures him, is doing during his European tour. In fact, he anticipates, he has already finished the second book in this new series, which is currently in the process of proofreading. “I would dare to say that I know how everything will end, but I prefer to wait for the writing process, because sometimes the story can take turns and I am the first to be surprised.”
Another of the things that Kristoff admits that leaves him speechless is the fanart that has been created regarding his works. In fact, he says that in his studio the walls are full of drawings that his followers have sent him over the years. And precisely one of those creators is Bon Orthwick, who has been in charge of the illustrations for his new book. “She is a great illustrator. I admire her very much and it seemed like a nice way to close the circle. On the other hand, I know that in books dedicated to adults it is not so common for there to be images, what happens is that I always set out to test the limits of the book in terms of object”.
Regarding the future, Kristoff explains that he is focused on finishing the trilogy and acknowledges that he already has a new project in mind, “most likely another trilogy.” However, she advances, “I have no intention of writing more about Nevernight, no matter how much the fans ask for it. The second parts were never good and, although I have sometimes been tempted, I think it would be a mistake since I am not the same person and I don’t think I could improve the saga”.
Jay Kristoff: “Vampires allow us to better explore humanity”