Jenny Downham’s Challenges in Writing ‘Furious Thing’


I always find it interesting to learn more about the struggles authors face when writing their books. Not only does it prove insightful to readers and budding writers alike, but it also makes me even more curious to read an author’s work to see exactly how they put their new found lessons into practice! Today I’m sharing a little bit of insight from author, Jenny Downham, and exactly what we can expect in her new novel!

What were some of the challenges you faced writing Furious Thing? 

It was a challenge to write about something as emotionally slippery as controlling and coercive behaviour.  This kind of psychological abuse is often hidden in plain sight.  We find it hard to recognise in our own lives, almost impossible to see in others’ and yet it’s everywhere.   

Lexi, the 15-year-old protagonist of my book, doesn’t know what’s happening to her at first and when she does begin to recognise it, she has no words to describe it and even if she did – would anyone believe her?  To move her from ‘target’ to hero in a way that was authentic, was quite a task! Also, I wanted the book to contain a lot of love and laughter, despite the difficult subject matter.  It was important to me that Lexi was funny and brave and hopelessly in love as well as someone with a furious temper and a tough life. 

Review coming soon!

I’m really looking forward to reading and reviewing Jenny Downham’s Furious Thing! It will be up on my blog soon, so watch this space! In the meantime, here’s the blurb:

Lexi’s angry. And it’s getting worse.

If only she could stop losing her temper and behave herself, her stepfather would accept her, her mom would love her like she used to, and her stepbrother would declare his crushing desire to spend the rest of his life with her. She wants these things so badly, she’s determined to swallow her anger and make her family proud. But pushing fury down doesn’t make it disappear. Instead, it simmers below the surface waiting to erupt . . . And there’ll be fireworks when it does.

About the author

Jenny Downham is a former actor and bestselling novelist. Her first novel, Before I Die, was an international bestseller and sold 1.3 million copies worldwide. It was shortlisted for the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, nominated for the Carnegie Medal and the Booktrust Teenage Prize and won the Branford Boase Award. It was also adapted for film and was released as Now is Good in 2012 starring Dakota Fanning and Jeremy Irvine. Jenny’s second novel, You Against Me, won the inaugural Waterstones Teenage Book Prize in 2012. Her third novel, Unbecoming, was shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2016 and won the Stonewall Honor Award from the American Library Association in 2017. Jenny lives in London.

You can purchase a copy of Furious Thing and find out more information over on Amazon!

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