Author Chris Von Halle
Let’s get to know Chris.
Chris von Halle has had many different lives in many different worlds—the near and distant future Earth, other planets, and even other dimensions—and his books recreate his childhood memories of such outlandish locations. In this world and life, he lives in Ridgewood, New Jersey, and enjoys such extraordinary activities as playing videogames, tennis, and basketball, and writing the occasional comic strip.
1.Why did you choose to write a dystopian novel?
I’d say it all started when I read some really great dystopian books (see below for a small list J), and after reading them I realized how much I love the feeling of a place or scene that used to be normal, a huge part of everyday life, but is now crumbling/decaying/falling apart. It’s just such a creepy type of scene, and always gets my imagination going wild in terms of wondering what led that place to come to be in such a dilapidated state. Bottom line: I just love that classic dystopian feel.
2. Do you have any favorite dystopian literature? Authors?
Absolutely—my recent favorite is James Dashner’s The Maze Runner, though one of my all-time favorites is Jeanne DuPrau’s The City of Ember and, of course, Suzanne Collins’s The Hunger Games.
3. Do you foresee any part of your book becoming reality? If so explain.
To be honest, not really. I mean, I don’t think an apocalypse in which a birth-transmitted disease that kills everyone when they turn seventeen is going to happen any time soon. However, I do think that after any kind of apocalypse occurs, it’s not farfetched to imagine the rulers of any small human societies that develop to act the way they do in my story. I don’t want to go into too much detail regarding that, though, as I don’t want to reveal any spoilers :).
4. When writing your book, did you seek to only tell a good story or to get across a specific message?
I pretty much always seek to tell a good story first and foremost, and The Fourth Generation is no exception. However, after I write a story—again, including The Fourth Generation—I take a long, hard look at what messages happened to well up (either purposefully or subconsciously) within the story and go to work making them more distinct and meaningful.
5. What other genres do you read?
I’m a big ol’ speculative fiction lover, so I’ll pretty much read anything under the sun within the general realms of science fiction/fantasy. I tend to gravitate more toward dystopian (well, obviously) and epic fantasy versus other genres, but I’ve still read everything from space opera to steampunk to urban fantasy, etc. Occasionally I read outside this realm, but I usually don’t enjoy it nearly as much.
6. Have you or would you like to write in another genre? Which one?
Yes, I have written quite a bit of epic fantasy, superhero fantasy, and soft science fiction that spans age categories from middle-grade to adult. I actually rather enjoy leaping from one age category and genre to another. Keeps my stories fresh and myself on my toes :).
7. Are you particularly fond of any one of you characters?
Yes, I really like Marf from The Fourth Generation, since he’s funny though a bit pathetic, and arrogant/annoying but likable at the same time. I tend to have at least one character per story that I’m particularly fond of.
8. Is there one book, in any genre, that has had a lasting impact on your life? Title. How did it affect you?
Hmmm…I don’t know if I could ever really point to just one book, but I would have to say Great Expectations (ironic, since it’s not a fantasy). Among the story’s many themes and messages, I always remember how the main character, Pip, had a benefactor who funded him so that he could learn the “gentlemanly arts” , and at one point Pip felt himself so important because of this that he looked down at his own stepfather, who had done so much for him over the years. Obviously, the message is that that’s a very arrogant, un-classy, and naive thing to do.
In the future, no adults exist. Ever since the plague swept the world 100 years ago, no one has lived past seventeen.
Sixteen-year-old Gorin, a collector of curious artifacts left over from the pre-plague civilization, is on the verge of perishing from that deadly epidemic. And his last wish is to find a way to visit the rulers’ reputedly magnificent, off-limits mansion.
Up against the clock, he and his friend Stausha steal into the mansion and discover a secret more horrifying than they ever could’ve imagined—a secret that holds the key to the survival of the whole human race.
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Thanks for stopping by, Chris.