Writing dark tales for teens

Writer Patrick Ness says the teenage years are the time when one explores taboos and the things one fears

Patrick Ness inverts the story of Moby Dick by telling it from the point of view of a whale in And The Ocean Was Our Sky (above).
Patrick Ness inverts the story of Moby Dick by telling it from the point of view of a whale in And The Ocean Was Our Sky (above).PHOTO: JAY WILLIAMS

In the books of young adult author Patrick Ness, there is often an inversion, a flipping of the world as people know it on its head.

It is not the jealous queen who murders the beautiful young woman, for instance. In The Rest Of Us Just Live Here (2015), a story about the apocalypse, the narrator is the kid just trying to get through high school while some other Chosen Ones save the world in the background.

Please or to continue reading the full article.

Get unlimited access to all stories at $0.99/month

  • Latest headlines and exclusive stories
  • In-depth analyses and award-winning multimedia content
  • Get access to all with our no-contract promotional package at only $0.99/month for the first 3 months*

*Terms and conditions apply.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 04, 2018, with the headline 'Writing dark tales for teens'. Print Edition | Subscribe