Lev Grossman is best known for his fantastical Magicians trilogy, later adapted into a sci-fi television series of the same name on SYFY. And while The Magicians is often described as Harry Potter but with sex and drugs, Grossman is trying his hand at writing for a different audience this time around: kids.
He joins Inverse Happy Hour to do an exclusive reading from his upcoming children's book, The Silver Arrow, out in September, which he describes as a story inspired by the classic works of beloved children's author Roald Dahl.
“I admire the way children read…you really just fall all the way into a fictional world. And writing for an audience who read like that was kind of irresistible,” he tells Inverse.
Below are the highlights from Inverse Happy Hour but check out the full interview and reading in the video above.
3:00 Why he choose to write a book about kids this time around
6:25 How radical children’s author Daniel Pinkwater influenced his writing style: “Kids knew that [Pinkwater] was not lying to them. You understood that he was telling you the truth and you just could never get enough of that. It’s something that I’ve always striven towards in my own writing,” he says.
8:35 What the future holds for his pending book tour.
9:50 The in-depth Star Wars feature he wrote for Vanity Fair and his fraught relationship with Disney.
“You know, I really did everything I could to convey the impression that I’d been on the set of Star Wars,” he explains to Inverse's Jake Kleinman.
(Spoiler alert: He was not.)
11:10 What he was surprised to see didn’t make it into Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker after interviewing Adam Driver for Vanity Fair.
13:15 What his favorite Star Wars trilogy is after rewatching the entire series.
14:15 Whether he’ll ever write another book for The Magicians series.
Inverse may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article. We only include products that have been independently selected by Inverse's editorial team.
15:00 His thoughts on what happened to The Magicians characters — “There’s no shortage of potholes to fill in” — after Book 3.
16:15 How the 2016 election and current events shaped the way he tells stories.
18:35 How The Magicians show inspired him in his writing
“If I ever go back to The Magicians," he says, "that stuff will absolutely feed back into what I write.”
19:30 An exclusive live reading of The Silver Arrow.
“This is a book about a girl named Kate. We meet her on the night before her 11th birthday. She is just at that age when she is ceasing to be a child but grownups won’t give her access to the world of real things,” he says before reading a beginning excerpt from the book. “All she has is toys to play with but she feels ready for more.”
A huge thanks to Grossman for joining us!