A website dedicated to books in the Young Adult genre, featuring book reviews, author interviews contests and much more!

Friday, August 28, 2009

An Interview with Jessica Packwood of Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side & CONTEST!

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing the character of Jessica Packwood from Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side (courtesy of the imagination of author Beth Fantaskey). We talked about Lucius, vampires and her exciting wedding nuptials. Let's get started!

Jessica, when you first met Lucius, you didn’t care much for him- what event would you say marked the biggest turning point in your feelings for him and also, what was your biggest misconception about him?

My feelings for Lucius changed gradually – probably starting that day in the cafeteria when he wanted so badly to stand up for me against bully Frank Dormand. At that point, I didn’t realize – or want to realize – how I was starting to feel, though. It wasn’t until Lucius was so terribly injured by his horse that I admitted to myself how much I felt for him. And that was scary, too, in its own way.

The funny thing is, I don’t think I had too many misconceptions about Lucius. I thought he was arrogant, and dangerous, and powerful – and he is definitely all of those things. But I came to love those qualities, because they are Lucius. I just needed time to see how he could also be very caring and tender and thoughtful, too. If anything, that was an initial misconception – to think that he didn’t have a gentler side. However, he kept it pretty well hidden!

Lucius has really changed since you first met him. What would you say is the most startling transformation you’ve seen in him? In addition, what is the most frustrating aspect of his personality?

When I first met Lucius, he was completely emotionally autonomous. He didn’t want, or expect, love from anyone. His primary motivation for everything he did was duty to family and his own hunger for the power he’d been raised to wield when he came of age. But as we grew closer, he became someone capable of deep love - which he feels and expresses in the same profound way that he once adhered only to obligation. The night that my parents cared for him, and he allowed my mom to hold him like he was a true son… that definitely opened up a part of him, too. He’s certainly still not a “soft” individual, but a select few people are allowed to see a more vulnerable side of him now.

The most frustrating part of his personality is also one of his most endearing qualities. Lucius has never lost that instinct to protect me at all costs. (Maybe that impulse has gotten even stronger since we’ve fallen in love.) It’s hard for him to see me even at risk of being hurt. When that happens, he wants to immediately step in, even in situations where I feel like I can handle things. Maybe as I grow into my role as princess, he’ll learn to step back a little.

Since Lucius has come into your life, what is the most important lesson you’ve learned about yourself?

I’ve learned that I have huge reserves of courage that I’d never even tapped before. I went from being afraid to compete in a small horse show to volunteering to sacrifice my life for a clan of vampires I’d only just met. It’s almost hard for me to recall the girl that I was before Lucius. I look back at how I used to get bullied by Frank, for example, and wonder, “Why was I ever afraid to stand up to that?”

How different of a person do you think you would’ve been if you had grown up in Romania with your birthparents?

That’s hard to say, but I think I would have discovered my inner “royalty” a lot sooner. I probably would have been groomed for leadership, like Lucius. I understand that my birth parents weren’t brutal, like Lucius’s uncles were, but I am sure that, had I been raised from birth to lead a vampire nation, I would have been tested early and often. Life would never have been “safe.”

At times your parents embarrass you with the way they march to the beat of their own drum, but what do you think the best thing about growing up with the Packwoods has been?

In their own way, Mom and Dad did prepare me for the life I’ve chosen with Lucius. They couldn’t – and wouldn’t! – ever re-create the harsh vampire world, but they taught me to think for myself, and test my limits within our relatively secure, rural American community. And they certainly did their best to make sure I grew up with an open mind that could embrace the truth about who I am by birth. Although I tried to resist anything that didn’t seem rational, Mom and Dad – in their quiet way – kept pushing me to keep myself open to new possibilities. They are amazing parents.

Jessica, your birth mother was a strong, beautiful woman, yet we know so little about your birth father-can you shed some light on anything you’ve uncovered about him?

My birth father, Ladislau Dragomir, remains a bit of a mystery even to me. By all accounts, he was a quiet, thoughtful man who allowed my mother to have the spotlight and wield the power. I don’t think he really wanted to be a leader. He was happy that Mihaela stepped up to be the public face of the Dragomirs.

I do hear one story about him repeated, though. According to my Dragomir relatives, my father was such a private person, and his face so little known among the people of Romania, that he could have escaped destruction if he’d abandoned my mother and fled to exile. But he refused to leave her side, standing by her to the end. I think that speaks to his character – and to his love for my mother.

What do you think the best and worst things about being a vampire would be?

The worst part is definitely the danger of destruction. Vampires live by a different code, different laws, than humans, and my existence as a vampire princess will always be at risk. That’s pretty scary – especially given what happened to my birth parents and to Lucius’s parents.

The best part: Lucius. He’s worth all the risks, to me.

What do you hope the future brings for the Vladescu and Dragomir clans?

I hope that Lucius and I really can unite the clans, as the pact intended. I’d love to see the day where there’s no threat of war. But I wouldn’t say that day is here yet…

Can you discuss your highly anticipated upcoming wedding nuptials and how you are sharing the planning with all of us?

Lucius and I will get married this September, and I’m in the middle of the planning the wedding. It’s a pretty overwhelming task – especially since I’m still adjusting to life in Romania – so I’m asking everyone to help me select the location, my dress, the music, and some aspects of the ceremony. The wedding is going to be a big event, starting on September 20 and lasting for several days. (We need to make it worthwhile for some of our friends and family to travel from the United States.) The invitation is open to everyone who wants to check it out!

BETH FANTASKEY lives in Pennslyvania with her husband and two daughters. Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side is her first book. Her second novel, Jekel Loves Hyde is due out 2010.

In celebration of "Jessica's" wonderful interview, I am giving away -


US Entrants only PLEASE. Contest ends Sept. 16th


Erica said...

I haven't read Jessica's Guide To Dating on the Dark Side but i absolutely cannot wait to! It sounds fantastic.


Jess (The Cozy Reader) said...

Don't enter me but AWESOME INTERVIEW!!!

This is one of my favorite YA vampire books! Loved it!

I'll be posting this on my sidebar! And maybe to do a blog post! :)

Unknown said...

This book is one of my all time favorites and this interview MADE my day. Heading over to help out with the wedding. Thank you BETH --that rocked!!


Dena said...


Wow a 3 day wedding, that sounds like so much fun! Make sure to tell us all how it went.


YA Book Queen said...

I've seen this book so much, and everytime I think "I want that!", lol.

+1 sidebar link


jpetroroy said...

I'd love to enter! Thanks! I've heard good things about this book.

+1 I tweeted at https://twitter.com/jpetroroy/status/3631043998


I ♥ Book Gossip said...

Please count me in.

Great post btw.

+1 Posted on sidebar

cindyc725 at gmail dot com

Tales of Whimsy said...

Great interview. I would love to be considered.


Unknown said...

I love having the interview from her point of view - cool!

Put a link on my side bar


foltzsfantasticbooks AT gmail DOT com

Dani. said...

I reallyreallyreally want to read this book!
It sounds sooo good! Oh and nice interview! :)

Posted on Sidebar:
Also commented on Book Review!

Beth said...

Thanks for the Giveaway. The book looks great. Love the Interview.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Kimberly B. said...

This sounds like a really fun read. I'd love to win it!
beax0002 (at) umn (dot) edu

cait045 said...

I read this book and loved it. I really hope there is a sequel.

RagDollVampGirl said...

Awesome Interview! And Awesome Contest!!



Jenni @ Falling Off The Shelf said...

I would absolutly love to win a copy of this book! I've been wanting to buy a copy, but have been short on money and buying books has been on the bottom of my list..although I wish it were at the top! lol.

This was a great interview, by the way. I have yet to interview a character in the book, although I think it's a fantastic idea!

Please enter me.

jennilovevirgo AT aol DOT com

Anonymous said...

I have heard about this book, but it is a new to me author, I so wanna win and read!!!


Sarah said...

I haven't even heard about this book yet. But it sounds fantastic from what Jessica is describing. That was a really good interview!

I'd love a chance to win this book. Please enter me!

two_of_hearts_101 at yahoo dot com

Kristen said...

Wonderful interview. I've been meaning to read her book and that interview made me want it even more!

Thanks for the chance to win it.


Ellz said...

I am so excited to read this book,I have been hearing rave reviews! Thanks for the chance to remove it from my wish list!

Angelene said...

I love Jessica's Guide To Dating On The Dark Side! It's an amazing novel, I love the action and the chemistry between Jess and Lucius. The interview was awsome, jessica answers the questions coming out from her heart. I will absolutely help her plan the wedding and can't wait for September 20. I wish Jess and Lucius best of luck and hoping for a sequel.
E-mail: Angelboo1991@yahoo.com

Chelsea B. said...

Ohh! This book sounds really good!
Loved the interview! :)

Emily said...

Love the interview! I'm so excited for the wedding! I'll totally be there!

Liz said...

LOVE the Interview :)
It sounds like an AWESOME book!


throuthehaze said...

Never head of this before but it sounds like a great read!
throuthehaze at gmail dot com

Mary said...

I have had this on my list for a long time. Thank you for hosting this giveaway! MaryinHB@gmail.com

ParaJunkee said...

That was great! Sounds like a good book. I've posted a link on my blog http://parajunkee.blogspot.com/
rrivera39 at cox dot net

Bookalicious Ramblings said...

I can't enter the competiton because I'm not from the US (boo!), but I just wanted to say that I *adore* that cover!!

Ariel Skye said...

Hello! I'd love to enter the contest! And I really enjoyed your interview. :-)

Unknown said...

Please enter me in the contest. I have been wanting to read this one for a long time.

+1 added to sidebar.


Pamk said...

wonderful interview. Sounds like a great read.
scrtsb at yahoo dot com

Pamk said...

shoot got my email wrong. That's what I get for trying discuss something with my son while typing.
scrtsbpal at yahoo dot com

Elizabeth said...

This book is really really good!!! :) Please enter me! Yzzil2u@aol.com.

Whit said...

Love the book and would love a t-shirt. Thanks for the interview. I needed a fix while I wait for the new chapters to come out in Sept.

Rich Mom, Rich Dad. Poor Mom, Poor Dad. said...

Count me in! I would love to read this book!


The Book Owl said...

+1 I haven't read this yet, but I'm excited to. Fun interview.


Wendy said...

I haven't read Jessica's Guide To Dating on the Dark Side yet but I love the cover and it sounds sooo good so I can't wait! :)

Wendy said...

I posted a link on my blog's sidebar. :)

Leslie said...

i've heard soooo many good things about this book!!!

leslie-lv at hotmail dot com

luckygirl1112 said...

I really want to read this book. Enter me please!


Megan said...

It looks like a really good book. Can't wait to read it.


Sarah said...

I love the interview and the book...I've posted the interview on my facebook account... Sarah V Angels_Kisses24@yahoo.com

Anne D. said...

Wow, I really can't wait for the wedding :)

Anonymous said...

hey well i started reading the book a couple of days ago & finished it i just loved this book so MUCH i loved the ending & im wondering if theres going to be a sequel i would love to read more about jessica & lucius

Mimi Ramos said...

The book was AMAZING, one of the best vampire books I've read so far. The interview was. . . (for lack of better words) cute. It was nice to hear the thoughts of Jessica and to be able to have some questions answered. Can't wait for the wedding (I'm helping plan it too :D !!!) Beth said that from the wedding she'll be writing a few extra chapters (I guess you can call it a sequel) and maybe it will turn into a whole book later, depending on "how it goes". . . .

Anonymous said...

I loved this book, and this interview with Jessica is awesome. I love the questions. What a wonderful idea. I found a link to this blog, and I love it. I might actually create an account, just so I can get updates. If I get lucky, email me at minka989@hotmail.com.

-Niki Z.
p.s. cute cute cute page.

Sita said...

Very creative interview! I would love to win a copy of this book. Please enter me.


Amanda from Novel Addiction said...

This looks so cool! I would love to win and check it out!

ohmorningglow AT aol DOT com

DianNna said...

Fantastic interview! I loved the book and it was great to see more of the character Jessica.


Haley said...

oh boy, i've heard about this book... want it so bad...

posted a link at twitter: twitter.com/haleymathiot

haley mathiot at yahoo dot com

Kelli said...

I've been seeing this book everywhere! I really want to read it :)

Count me in!


oh, and I've posted this in my sidebar

Anonymous said...

great interview

CassandraBelikov440 said...

i wanna be entered !! loved the interview.
posted it in my blog.



Manda said...

I absolutely love this book and all the great extras that keep me updated on on Jess and Lucius!
antalamantes@gmail.com Amanda

Just Your Typical Book Blog said...

I've been wanting to read this one forever, and have heard nothing but great things about it. Loved the interview - please enter me.


Drea said...

This one is sooo on my TBR list and would loove to have a copy.

Kay Cassidy said...

What a totally fun feature, Kim!!

Tonya H said...

sounds interesting. It will be my first read by the author! Please enter me!

tonyaharmati at gmail dot com


D Swizzle said...

Please enter me!


Jessica said...

this sounds fun - please enter me!


cait045 said...

I loved reading this book and would love my own copy.


Park Avenue Princess said...

I absolutely LOVE that you can "attend the wedding" and help plan it! Please enter me! Adorable site! Thank you for hosting this giveaway!

x0xx Amy (Park-Avenue Princess)

IAmHiMaintenance (at) aol (dot) com

Sandy said...

I LOVE character interviews! They're so fun :)
I was debating whether I should buy this or not but Jessica *winkwink* seems like a nice girl so I think I might be heading to borders later...

+1 link's in my sidebar!


Sherry said...

I would love a three day wedding event! That sound's exciting! I am even more excited to read this book now! I think I will have to grab it soon!


Froggy said...

oh I would love to read this! I love vampire books! And I can't wait to read Jeckle loves Hyde!


Froggy said...

I linked the contest on my blog on the sidebar under contests!



Anonymous said...

I would love to read this book!
Please enter me.


Unknown said...

that was cool, i really want to hear more about what happens next so any little bit helps!


April (BooksandWine) said...

I like that you interviewed "Jessica". I like that Lucius changed her, not negatively, because any relationship you have will change and affect you in some way, that's so true to life.

email is

Katelyn Burton said...

Yay! I love how you're sharing all of this with us, it's amazing to see your enthusiasm for your own characters and us lucky readers!

heatherzilla said...

Please include me in the giveaway. This sounds like a good book and one that I would like to read.

Anonymous said...

awesome interview. I really enjoyed reading it.


Anonymous said...

Please enter me.. The cover is AWESOME!


Christina MM said...

I Love this Book And this interview was great thanks for doing this i've been dying for anything about Jessica and Lucius for months!! Thanks Again!!Here's My contact info for the contest!! morac7@mail.broward.edu

Aimee said...

Haven't read this yet but now I have to. Thanks!

Unknown said...

I am so excited to read this book, ive heard nothing but good things about this book. cant wait!


Sab H. said...

Oh I love when you get to interview the character!! Must be great creating a person, and hard that is. Great interview!

I haven't read it but now I now a few things, I'd love to participate in your contest! Thanks!

+1 I linked to my blog's sidebar:


Unknown said...

Congrats on the wedding to the author!
The new book sounds really good - I like Jekel and Hyde stories. This sound like one with a twist!
I have posted about this give away on my blog.
Layers of Thought
Thanks a bunch!

cait045 said...

I love this book and I love the stuff Beth has on her website right now.


Anonymous said...

WOW! Very good i loved the book i couldn't put it down!

Melanie said...

This sounds like a great book. I love that there are horses incorporated. Jessica sounds like a girl with a lot of guts!

+1 Tweeted: http://twitter.com/MelaniesMusings/status/3919267454

Gina said...

I'd love a chance to win this! I've seen it at our local bookstore and thumbed through a few times...just haven't quite gotten around to buying it yet. Loved the interview to...very creative!

Off to retweet (@GRgenius) and post in my contest links sidebar (http://insatiablereaders.blogspot.com).


Anonymous said...

Cout me in!

Megan said...

Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark side is a great book and I'd recommend it to evryone. The interview was a really good idea and it was interesting to learn more about Jessica's father. mcerbin@sbcglobal.net

Debs Desk said...

Please include me in your giveaway.

Sara said...

haha great blog post!
This book sounds really good and funny!


ReggieWrites said...

Awesome interview! JGTDOTDS is one book that I can't wait for! YAY! Count me in!


Madison VanGelder said...

Great interview. This book is the best vampire book I've read. Count me in.


~The Book Pixie said...

I loved the interview. So creative and fun to read. Great questions too. I want to read this book so bad.

+1 sidebar: http://frombrianaspointofview.blogspot.com/

~Briana :D

Alyssa F said...

I love interviews like this. It's so interesting to get inside the character's head. Makes me want to read the book even more.

+1 Blogged about it here: http://theshadyglade.blogspot.com/2009/09/contest-roundup-september-14th.html

Miss Haley said...

i'm a follower, i tweeted this (twitter.com/haleymathiot), posting on Pulse It (haleyknitz) and on my blog (haleymathiot.blogspot.com)

haley mathiot at yahoo dot com

M.A.D. said...

Mary D
zenrei57 (at) hotmail (dot) com

Wow! This book is new to me, but you sure wrote a yummy review and now I gotta have this one LOL
Please count me in the giveaway :)

I ♥ Book Gossip said...

Please count me in.

+1 Posted on sidebar.

cindyc725 at gmail dot com

Liz said...

Great review :)
I havent heard of this one but it looks awesome!


Paradox said...

I read Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side, and I absolutely loved it! So much better than Twilight!

paradoxrevealed (at) aim (dot) com

Paradox said...

I linked to the contest on Twitter: http://twitter.com/ParadoxRevealed/status/4023635309

paradoxrevealed (at) aim (dot) com

Jessy said...

I really enjoyed this book a lot. I am also looking forward to reading Beth's new book Jekel Loves Hyde.

findjessyhere at gmail dot com

Kristine said...

So creative! I enjoyed reading the interview from this unique prespective!


Dahlia (TheBookShopaholic) said...

I pine for that book.


Link on Blog under Contest link on Nav Bar.

Anonymous said...

Please enter me!


Brittany said...

I absolutely LOVE this book soooooo much. It is soo good and I can never stop thinking about it. I love Jessica/Antanastia and Lucius together and their wedding so far is going great. I hope that Beth Fantaskey comes out with a sequeal to Jessica's Guide to the Dark Side, if she does it's going to be AMAZING!! I loved this interview it filled the void from finishing the book and reading the new wedding chapters!!! THANK YOU SOOOOOO MUCH!!!!! :) Here's my contact information: