Tracy Hecht: The Nocturnals – The Fallen Star Q&A

Today, we have a fun Q&A with Tracey Hecht, author of the middle grade series The Nocturnals. Book 3, The Fallen Star, is in stores NOW! Learn more about all three books below, but first – here’s our Q&A with Tracey:

What has been the most rewarding part of writing The Nocturnals?

Most rewarding by far is the team of people with whom we do it. I love my team. We borrow on each other’s strengths and support each other through it all. It’s the best part of what we do, the working together part.

What about the most challenging part?

The biggest hurdle is that we’re a new publisher, it’s a new series, and I’m a new writer, so everything is new to us.

What surprised you most while writing The Mysterious Abductions?

One of the things I love most about writing The Nocturnals is the research that is involved with each book. I love using the physiologies of the animals and their unique characteristics to inform and develop characters and enhance plot and story dynamic. The details I learn about the nocturnal world are constantly inspiring and engaging for me.

How was the writing process evolved from Book One to Book Three?

I think we didn’t realize how much edit time was necessary for a book.The first book took longer to write  as I was establishing the tone, the voice, the rhythm, and the characters. That took a while. But the edit was shorter. Now we spend all that extra effort and time on the back end making the stories, dialogue and style tighter.

What has been the best fan interaction you’ve had, so far?

A middle grader told me ‘double thumbs up to infinity!’ I thought that was really hilarious and cute.

Finally, how does seeing your books in a bookstore make you feel?

It’s weird, because by the time the book is on the shelf, I’m already on the second or third book after that one. Right now The Fallen Star is coming out but I’ve moved onto The Midnight Spawn, so I’m already consumed with a new story line. What I like more than seeing my books on bookshelves is seeing kids enjoy reading them.

Book One: The Mysterious Abductions

“The characters are delightful and the nighttime landscape is captivating. It was just as I expected—because the best stories always take place in the dark!” — R.L. Stine

In the first book of the critically acclaimed middle grade series The Nocturnals, we meet three unlikely friends—Dawn, a serious fox, Tobin, a sweet pangolin, and Bismark, the loud mouthed, pint sized sugar glider. Discover the friendships, teamwork, and humor, as the Nocturnal Brigade solves the unpredictable mysteries of the night.

In The Mysterious Abductions, animals are disappearing without a trace. With the help of a gentle wombat, a jittery jerboa, a band of coyotes and some kooky bats, the brigade journeys to the depths of the earth where they find themselves in a wacky, high stakes game that will determine all of their survival!

Book Two: The Ominous Eye

Join Dawn, Bismark and Tobin as they set out to investigate the source of a violent jolt that fractures the earth! Along their journey, the Nocturnal Brigade meets an unfamiliar reptile—a tuatara named Polyphema—who reveals that a giant beast caused the destruction and will soon strike again. Polyphema with her special insights, is the only one who can help the Nocturnal Brigade stop this fearsome predator… but can she be trusted? With help from an owl, the jerboas, and some kiwis, the animals set a trap since surrender is not an option against this relentless beast.

Book Three: The Fallen Star

In The Fallen Star, Dawn, Tobin, and Bismark awaken one evening to a disaster: all of the forest’s pomelos have been mysteriously poisoned! As the Nocturnal Brigade sets out to investigate, they encounter Iris, a mysterious aye-aye, who claims monsters from the moon are to blame. While the three heroes suspect a more earthly explanation, the animals of the valley are all falling ill. And then Tobin gets sick, too! The Nocturnal Brigade must race to find answers, and the cure, before the pomelo blight threatens to harm them all.

Tracey Hecht is a writer and entrepreneur who has written, directed and produced for film. The American Booksellers Association chose her first book in The Nocturnals series, The Mysterious Abductions, as a Kids’ Indie Next List pick. Last year, in partnership with the New York Public Library, she created a Nocturnals Read Aloud Writing program for middle graders that has expanded nationwide. She splits her time between Oquossoc, Maine and New York City.


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