Last week I had the amazing opportunity to be a part of a group phone interview with Margaret Stohl about her upcoming release BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE (a wicked awesome sequel, btw).
We each got the chance to ask a couple of non-spoiler-y questions about the Black Widow series and I’m thrilled to be able to share a few of my most favorite questions and answers with you today (and reveal who I think might make a great Red Widow)!
I also have, courtesy of Marvel Press, an autographed copy of BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE for giveaway. For a chance to win just scroll down to the Rafflecopter for details and to enter.
In anticipation of the interview, I received a copy of the book to read and some super awesome swag thanks to Marvel…
…and let me just say that this sequel is even more action-packed, epic and out-of-this-world amazing than the first book in the series. So if you haven’t already grabbed a copy of BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED, now is the perfect time – BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE releases next week on October 11th!
To learn more about this book and series visit: books.disney.com.
And if you’d like to be a part of the conversation on social media, don’t forget to tag #RedVengeance!
About BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE
Title & Series: BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE (Black Widow #2)
Author: Margaret Stohl
Release date: October 11, 2016
Publisher: Marvel Press
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook
Emotions are dangerous, which is why the graduates of Moscow’s famed spy school the Red Room are taught to keep their enemies close and their loved ones at a distance. Black Widow and Red Widow, also known as Natasha Romanoff and Ava Orlova, forgot that lesson once, and they won’t forget it again.
But the Widows have inherited something else from their shared Moscow past: a relentless need for vengeance—Ivan Somodorov is dead, but his network of terror remains.
While the Widows search South America in order to extinguish a smuggling operation with ties to their old nemesis, their own Red Room not only attempts to assassinate them both but also hacks their secure S.H.I.E.L.D. network. As a result, Ava and Natasha find themselves thrust into a trying mission of international intrigue that takes them throughout the world and back to New York City, where their friends Dante and Sana become unlikely targets as well.
Once again, nothing is as it seems, no one can be trusted, and no one is safe—not unless the Widows can stop a conspiracy involving stolen nuclear warheads, mind-altering chemical weapons, and ultimately, betrayal by old friends and enemies alike.
The Interview Questions & Answers
We each got the chance to ask the author a couple of questions, but I’m also sharing a couple of my favorite questions asked by other participants and their answers.
Fiktshun: What was it like incorporating new characters, particularly Ava, into the Marvel universe and what was it like getting into the heads of existing characters like Natasha and Tony Stark?
Ms. Margaret Stohl: Everybody who knows me knows that I have a wicked Tony Stark sitting on one shoulder at all times. I’m famous for writing Tony Stark banter. It’s the love of my life. I can’t not make terrible Tony Stark jokes. It’s sort of my alter ego.
Mostly what my Marvel editors do is cut 70 pages of Tony Stark out of all of my books because he has a way of growing all over every page. I love putting Tony’s banter in, particularly with Natasha and Ava because Natasha gets so cranky at him, and because Ava’s like– who is this old guy like, retching on me, like, what’s going on? So they both have a different response to him. I just love characters so I love it when there’s a dynamic showing of understanding between three characters.
It is amazing to create a character for the Marvel universe. As we finished doing the comic, the one shot for Ava, I got to see Alexei for the first time. Getting to see your babies in color is an amazing thing. I think I will never get over that.
I look forward to seeing more Natasha and more Ava in Marvel comics. I love what they’re starting to do now with teen characters. And I also love that they’ve been so great about including me in their creative summit. They give me a monthly book and want to hear what a teen audience really cares about, which I think is amazing.
Captain Marvel is also one of my favorite characters of all time. But I really love what they do with characters that are Ava’s age, it’s great.
Fiktshun: If Marvel decided to add Ava to the cinematic universe, how stoked would you be, and if you could cast someone, who would you choose and why?
[Of course what I meant to ask was, what would you do if Marvel added Ava to the cinematic universe… Gah, nerves!]
Ms. Margaret Stohl: The answer to how stoked is obviously very stoked. And who I would cast, I don’t know, who would you cast?
Fiktshun: I think even I can’t even imagine it. I was looking through all the other actresses and I couldn’t find anybody as kickass as Ava has come to be, especially in the second novel. That’s the difficulty.
Ms. Margaret Stohl: I will have to think about that. I will really ponder that one. Even in Beautiful Creatures, I had no dream casting, and Kami really freaked out when Jeremy Irons was cast as Macon, because she imagined him in that role. I had never imagined anyone in that role other than Macon because he was Macon who lived in my head. That’s my approach.
Fiktshun Update: So after the interview I ended up binge-watching a TV series with an actress who I thought might be great for Ava (even if she is a little bit older than the character). I could totally see her as fierce, and as a redhead. (And I think visually she’d work really well on-screen with the actress playing Black Widow).
Yep, I totally could see Nicola Peltz as Ava Orlova. What do you think?
ComicBooked: My question is, for Natasha in this and the first book, I can kind of tell that you focused more on the comic character. However, did the movie version of Black Widow influence you at all in how you portrayed Natasha in the books?
Ms. Margaret Stohl: Yes, I always have Black Widow from the movies in mind because I think she’s done such a great job for so many of my readers in bringing the Black Widow character to life. Black Widow has been around for 50 years, she really has had so many creators. But I specifically think that her current cinematic version is incredibly successful with the book. I’m a fan.
ComicsWorthReading: Following up on what you alluded to with the extent of the character, did you find it daunting to deal with Natasha considering her long-existing continuity and such fan interest?
Ms. Margaret Stohl: I did but I love the Marvel fans, that’s really why I’m here. And I often say both Marvel and Disney are very good at finding the right spirit-partner for all of these franchises. It is actually so daunting that nobody should take these jobs if they don’t have a passionate conviction or love for those characters.
I particularly love the female heroes I work with, such as Black Widow, and then I had the honor of creating Red Widow. I just finished doing a one shot, my second Red Widow one shot, so a short comic that will come out called the– maybe that wasn’t announced. The Red Widow comic opens in conjunction with the release of this book.
That was my dream, right, to create a Marvel character, so that’s been wonderful. And then again as I take on Captain Marvel, this is, for me– I’m a Marvel fan in that this is reality to me and this is where I want to be in my life. So everything that makes it terrifying also makes it the greatest job in the world, if that makes sense. Every time I get to work with one of these iconic woman Marvel superheroes, that’s me feeling like I’m in the room where it happens. These things matter intensely to me, that mattered to me growing up, that mattered to many of my teen readers and also to my teen kids, so it’s an honor.
About Margaret Stohl
Margaret Stohl is the #1 New York Times best-selling co-author of the Beautiful Creatures novels (also a major motion picture) and the author of the instant New York Times best seller Black Widow: Forever Red, as well as a contributor to multiple Marvel comics. Previously, Margaret was a veteran of the video game industry, working as a writer and designer before co-founding 7 Studios with Lewis Peterson.
About BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED
Title: BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED (Black Widow #1)
Author: Margaret Stohl
Release date: October 13, 2015
Publisher: Marvel Press
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook
Read an EXCERPT
Enter the world of the Avengers’ iconic master spy… Natasha Romanoff is one of the world’s most lethal assassins. Trained from a young age in the arts of death and deception, Natasha was given the title of Black Widow by Ivan Somodorov, her brutal teacher at the Red Room, Moscow’s infamous academy for operatives.
Ava Orlova is just trying to fit in as an average Brooklyn teenager, but her life has been anything but average.The daughter of a missing Russian quantum physicist, Ava was once subjected to a series of ruthless military experiments—until she was rescued by Black Widow and placed under S.H.I.E.L.D. protection. Ava has always longed to reconnect with her mysterious savior, but Black Widow isn’t really the big sister type. Until now.
When children all over Eastern Europe begin to go missing, and rumors of smuggled Red Room tech light up the dark net, Natasha suspects her old teacher has returned—and that Ava Orlova might be the only one who can stop him. To defeat the madman who threatens their future, Natasha and Ava must unravel their pasts. Only then will they discover the truth about the dark-eyed boy with an hourglass tattoo who haunts Ava’s dreams. . . .
Black Widow: Forever Red features all the heart-pounding adventure readers expect from Marvel, written by #1 New York Times best-selling author Margaret Stohl. Uncover a new side of the Marvel Universe that will thrill loyal fans and newcomers alike, as Stohl reveals the untold story of Black Widow for the very first time.
What’s up for grabs…
- One (1) winner will receive an autographed copy of BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE by Margaret Stohl
** Giveaway is open to US addresses only. Prizing and samples provided by Marvel Press. **
Enter in the Rafflecopter below…