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Sabaa Tahir is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of An Ember in the Ashes and its sequel, A Torch Against the Night. She grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s eighteen-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, raiding her brother’s comic book stash, and playing guitar badly. She began writing An Ember in the Ashes while working nights as a newspaper editor. She likes thunderous indie rock, garish socks, and all things nerd. Sabaa currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.
An Ember in the Ashes
Author Sabaa Tahir talks inspiration and procrastination | authorcuts
Sabaa Tahir is currently hard at work on the fourth and final volume in her series, An Ember in the Ashes. Naturally, we couldn’t stop ourselves from asking for a few hints about how she will end this epic saga.
PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE: You’re deep into the series now.
Sabaa Tahir: Yes, I am. Three books in.
PRH: Did you anticipate that it would be this big?
ST: No, I always knew that it was going to be four books, but I didn’t realize how much the fandom would expand. That’s actually been one of the coolest things about this: seeing how all sorts of people enjoy the series, from twelve year-olds to the 82 year-old woman who recently wrote to me.
PRH: Do you recall any series that you read growing up that really grabbed your attention?
ST: Absolutely. The Shannara series by Terry Brooks has been one of my favorites since I was about 11. I absolutely love that series, and I will still read anything Terry Brooks writes because he is one of my original favorite fantasy authors.
PRH: Has being a writer of a popular fantasy series given you any more insight into them than you had as a reader?
ST: I’m much more forgiving than I used to be of authors who take their time with books. I’d rather that you take your time and get it right. I understand that point of view now, but used to complain when I was a reader.
PRH: We’re at a very dramatic point in the series. Should we still be optimistic about how things will turn out, or are you just going to reach out and destroy that?
ST: I think that there will be some destruction, but I can’t say anything more than that. There is going to be a fourth book, of course, so maybe you should always have hope.
PRH: Any hints?
ST: Someone you like is going to die. That’s about all I can say.
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