Happy Monday and welcome to my stop on the I HOPE YOU’RE LISTENING blog tour! I’m so excited because today I have an interview with Tom Ryan to share with you! Plus you can enter a giveaway for a print copy! This book is truly amazing and I’m so so excited to for you to find out more about it!
I Hope You're Listening by Tom Ryan
Published by Aw Teen on October 6, 2020
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Mystery, Thriller, LGBTQIA+
In her small town, seventeen year-old Delia “Dee” Skinner is known as the girl who wasn’t taken. Ten years ago, she witnessed the abduction of her best friend, Sibby. And though she told the police everything she remembered, it wasn’t enough. Sibby was never seen again.At night, Dee deals with her guilt by becoming someone else: the Seeker, the voice behind the popular true crime podcast Radio Silent, which features missing persons cases and works with online sleuths to solve them. Nobody knows Dee’s the Seeker, and she plans to keep it that way.When another little girl goes missing, and the case is linked to Sibby’s disappearance, Dee has a chance to get answers, with the help of her virtual detectives and the intriguing new girl at school. But how much is she willing to reveal about herself in order to uncover the truth? Dee’s about to find out what’s really at stake in unraveling the mystery of the little girls who vanished.
If you could trade lives with any YA character for a day, who would it be and why? What about a week? A month, year, or forever?
I would happily change places for a few weeks with Stevie Bell from Maureen Johnson’s TRULY DEVIOUS series. She’s a cool character and a great detective, and I would love to spend some time at an alternative boarding school in the hills of Vermont! As far as trading lives with someone forever… I’m pretty happy with my life, so I think I’d have to turn down that opportunity.
What would you do if you spent the day with Dee? Where would you go to eat, hang out, relax, etc.?
If I could hang out with Dee for the day, I would totally get her to show me how to record and produce a podcast! I love listening to podcasts, and I’d love to make one of my own someday. Other than that, I’d like to go for a long drive with Dee and Sarah in Sarah’s vintage muscle car – maybe Sarah would even let me drive!
If Dee were to hang out with characters from other YA books, who would they be and why?
I think Dee would get along great with Mac, the protagonist of my previous mystery KEEP THIS TO YOURSELF. They’ve both been forced into situations where they’re expected to play detective, and I think they could teach each other a few things! I also think they could each use a few new friends, and they’d get along really well.
What was your favorite bit of research you ended up not using?
I did a lot of research into missing persons cases for I HOPE YOU’RE LISTENING, because I wanted to nail down a realistic view of what the “average” disappearance looks like so that Dee’s podcast “Radio Silent” would feel authentic. One case that was really fascinating to read about was the disappearance of Lord Lucan, a British aristocrat who disappeared after a terrible murder happened on his estate. It wasn’t even remotely the kind of story that fit the vibe of IHYL or “Radio Silent” but it was really interesting to read about!
What is your favorite quote, scene, or moment from I Hope You’re Listening?
My favorite quote from I HOPE YOU’RE LISTENING is the quote Dee uses to end every episode of “Radio Silent”.
“Is there something you can do to help? Listen up. Let’s try.”
I think it really encapsulates the message of the book, and it nails down the reason Dee started the podcast in the first place. It’s easy to feel helpless, or to sit back and watch as things unfold. Instead of being a helpless bystander, like Dee was ten years ago when Sibby was abducted, it’s worth asking if there’s something we can do. I use this message repeatedly in the book for a reason.
Were there alternate endings you considered, or did you always know where the story was headed?
It’s funny, with my previous mystery KEEP THIS TO YOURSELF, I knew from the minute I started writing it where the story was going. I found that reassuring, and I expected that every mystery I wrote in the future would work the same way. But it turned out that I had the exact opposite experience with I HOPE YOU’RE LISTENING. The premise came to me first (a teen with an anonymous podcast) but I really had no idea what had happened to (Dee’s missing friend) Sibby until I had written almost two thirds of the book. Once the solution came to me, it all fell into place quickly, but for a while I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to wrap things up!
Tom Ryan is the award winning author of several acclaimed books for young readers. He has been nominated for multiple awards, and was the winner of the 2020 Arthur Ellis Award for Best YA Crime Book. Two of his books were Junior Library Guild selections, and three of his young adult novels, Way to Go, Tag Along, and Keep This to Yourself, were chosen for the ALA Rainbow List, in 2013, 2014 and 2020. He was a 2017 Lambda Literary Fellow in Young Adult Fiction.
Tom, his husband and their dog currently divide their time between Ottawa and Nova Scotia.
Have you added this amazing book to your tbr yet? Let me know in the comments and have a splendiferous day!