Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud Interview with Jon Thomason

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Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud Author Jon ThomasonWelcome to Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud Author Jon Thomason! Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions about your life and book!

Jon Thomason lives with his family in San Diego, after many years living in the beautiful Seattle area. He has a successful career in high tech where he’s been fortunate enough to participate in many big-name industry releases.

Storytelling permeates everything he does. In the moments when Jon is not helping build the story of the tech world, he can almost always be found working on a project: writing, photography, videography, graphics design, or 3D art.

And he’s always careful to conceal his jinni magic abilities, though perhaps might slip one day and be discovered…

Connect with Jon Thomason on FacebookTwitterGoodreads

Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud Interview with Jon Thomason:

Please tell us in 20 words or less, why we should read your book.
Have you met Max? Hurry! She has to learn how to save the world. And there’s the wickedly sarcastic Philip…

What book is on your night stand now?
Silent Joe by T. Jefferson Parker

Do you have plans for a new book? Goals for future projects?
Oh definitely. I’m already at work on the sequel to Max! I also plan to write a series for adults.

Describe the cover in 10 words or less.
Stark contrast: black and white, with Max’s haunting eyes…

How did you come up with the title of the book?
I was researching words to describe the jinni concept and came across some Arabic transliterations and came across Zumuruud. I can’t explain where Max Xylander came from. Just popped into my head one day and I loved it from the first second.

Did you lose any characters along the way?
No. In fact, I ended up adding two characters while writing…

Which of your characters is most/least like you, and in what way(s)?
Philip is the character that wants to come out of me, but I manage to restrain it most of the time. I’d tell you more here, but it’s better if you read him. I will say that he’s the villain. I think I was most comfortable writing in his voice. I deeply understand him!

At what point in your life did you decide you wanted to be a writer?
From a very (very!) young age, I have wanted to write a novel. While I write often technically, I don’t consider myself a writer, but rather a novelist. The only kind of writing I’m really interested in as an art form is the novel. I always wanted to be a writer, an engineer, and a fighter pilot. Two of the three came true!

What are three words that best describe you?
Talks too fast!

Facebook or Twitter?
Twitter: I follow well over a hundred people/sites and love to watch interesting things from around the world flow by in real time on my feed.

What inspired you to write your first book?
Our daughter had a rare form of leukemia as a child (she’s doing fabulously well today!) and this got us thinking about the miracle of life, and what if that bone marrow transplant might have had an even more powerful effect…

Who designed the cover of your book?
I did!

If you could meet any writer, dead or alive, who would it be?
Isaac Asimov

What is your writing process like? Do you follow a regular routine?
When I can afford to write full time, I am up very early, and at work writing after a workout. I generally work a chapter at a time, but that generally a chapter has to be rewritten at least once, if not twice, and edited at least ten times. I just can’t get things right on the first, or even fifth pass.

Do you skip around, peek at the ending, or do you read straight through a book?
Always read straight through. Novels were meant to be linear and I love the anticipation of climax and sense of closure when it wraps up. While it might be tempting to short-circuit this, it’s about delayed gratification!

What does your workspace look like?
Retina MacBook Pro docked to a 30″ Apple Cinema monitor. Mounted on the wall above it is a 46″ LCD TV. Keyboard on a Humanscale declined keyboard shelf with built-in wrist-rest. Humanscale ergonomic chair with headrest–and critically, the computer connected to a Denon A/V receiver and surround sound Monitor Audio speakers. In other words, pretty much the dream setup!

What’s your favorite thing about Spring?
Nothing. In fact, so much so that I moved to San Diego where a cold day in the winter is a high of 55.

What genre does your book fall under?
Middle-grade Fantasy

How do you replenish your writing spirit?
To some degree, reading. But more often, people-watching, news-reading, and generally being out in the world, particularly overseas.

Tell everyone where they can go to stay up to date on your latest news!
I’d love to invite the world to and my twitter feed, @jonthomason

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
If I could give you some artwork instead of text, it would be the following text: “dumbed down children’s literature” with a gigantic red NOT superimposed on it. Kids are smart! And we need even smarter kids to keep our world in the next few decades turning. There’s no reason an exciting story has to be simple or that the author has to stick to three letter words. I appreciate the chance to talk to you today!

Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud Author Rebecca Lynn TalleyMax Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud

Max has anger management issues. But she has a secret, too. She can make things happen. Like magic. She almost killed a loser skate punk and nearly used it on her stuck up older sister. The question is, can she do anything other than blow things up? Can she learn to control it? And is it really possible that an obscure teenage girl is the key to keeping all of humanity safe?

Philip just got his ring back. He got it taken away for messing with his teacher’s mind so he can cheat on a test. Now that he has his ring, he thinks he should be able to use his power to make his life better. A lot better. The problem is that people want him to be responsible. But if you could do magic, wouldn’t you use it to escape work in any way possible?

Aaron wants to be a soldier. He knows there are lots of people who would try to take over, and he’s determined to stop them. The problem is that there’s this new girl. And she might be not be on the right side of things. She’s really talented and pretty, but she might be able to destroy everything he believes in. Whatever the case, he knows he needs to learn to be world class with the magic sword while he figures out what to do.

Brynn never gets out. Her grandfather won’t permit it. Her only access to the outside world are high fashion magazines, so she has an unusual idea what she should wear. She’s dying to get out and travel. And adopt animals. Any kind of animal. Is she a lonely future granny with cats or are her ridiculous clothes actually the next fashion craze? What possible role could she play in the destiny of the world?

Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud is a fast-paced fantasy adventure for all ages. Fans of magic, swordplay, secret agents, and conspiracies set in a modern everyday world will not be able to put the book down. Jon Thomason paints a vivid world of magic right under our noses and delivers rapid-fire action that keeps the pages turning.

Please know that if you make a purchase using a link on this page, I may earn a commission for it. Thank you.

Purchase Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud at Amazon.

Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud Author Jon Thomason

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About Cuzinlogic

Cuzinlogic is a lifestyle blog full of things we love including family, recipes, books, and everything in between. We are firm believers in "sharing what you know" - so that's why we love sharing tips, ideas and the latest and greatest products that make life easier amidst the craziness of everyday life.


  1. love the interview. His book seems interesting. :)

  2. Kamla L. says:

    Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud sounds like a adrenalin pumping young and fresh read. I’ve added it to my TBR. I looking forward to reading it and to introducing it to my nieces and nephews. Great Interview. Thanks for sharing

  3. That’s great he knew he wanted to be a writer since he was young

  4. I loved this book!

  5. How cool that Jon created his cover!

  6. I think it’s cool he created his own cover too! His own stamp on things :) Love it.

  7. Armando Read says:

    I like that are authors men and not just women.
    But, no. The cover don’t like to me, is just that is weird.

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