Aurora: What was your inspiration behind your most recent novel?
Hannah: For a very long time, I’ve wanted to write a book that subverts the expected narrative about sexual assault survivors. Foul is Fair shows a survivor who refuses to be powerless: she responds with the rage many experience and pursues the revenge many want. It centers a girl who is ruthless, unflinching, and unapologetic—why should she apologize for seeking the justice she won’t otherwise see?
What character do you most relate to and why?
At risk of prompting everyone I know to hide their knives: Jade. I relate to her ambition, her self-assurance, and her refusal to play by the rules.
Why do you feel books with powerful and relatable characters are so popular and have such a voice right now?
We’re in an era where people are refusing to be silenced—where they’re finding and creating ways to be heard. This is a hallmark of the #MeToo movement, which is particularly relevant to Foul is Fair, but it’s also at the heart of many other political and social justice movements as well as big conversations happening in the literary industry.
Please describe the content of your latest book and what can readers expect from the read.
Foul is Fair is the story of a sexual assault survivor seeking revenge. It’s relentless, aggressive, and stylized: CRUEL INTENTIONS meets KILL BILL. You’ll enjoy it if you like dark, prose-driven thrillers like Courtney Summers’s Sadie or Megan Abbott’s Dare Me. It’s also a loose reimagining of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. If you’re familiar with the play, you’ll find plenty of nods to the source material as well as thematic overlap—but you don’t need to know Macbeth to love Foul is Fair on its own!
Please note that there’s a lot of intense content in this book. For detailed information about potential triggers, visit hannahcapin.com/foul-is-fair.
What’s next for you in the book world?
I’ve just submitted a manuscript I hope will be Book Three! I can’t talk much about it yet, but it also centers teenage girls fighting back against individuals and institutions that have tried to silence them. Looking further ahead, I hope to branch out into adult fiction while continuing to write YA, too.
Who is your favorite writer right now and why?
I think I’ll always be re-reading Nabokov’s Lolita and Eugenides’s The Virgin Suicides—the prose is incredible and the balance of humor and darkness is so, so good. And I recently read an advance copy of Kate Elizabeth Russell’s My Dark Vanessa, which I loved. Kate’s writing is searing, nuanced, and fearless, and Kate is a wonderful person and a driven writer. I can’t wait to see what she does next!