Q&A with Jenna Finnerty on Young Adult Novel “When Darkness Tries to Hide”


When Darkness Tries to Hide is a teen novel by Stacy A. Padula. It is book #2 in the Montgomery Lake High book series. Jenna Finnerty was asked a series of questions about the characters, theme, and plot of the story. Reading this would be useful for anyone who has read the book to gain deeper insight from a Montgomery Lake High intern.

Q: How did your opinion of Jason change as you read the story?

A: As I read the story, I began to like Jason and feel bad for him. I wanted him to recover and get out of the bad situation. I hope to see that he sticks with his sobriety and tries harder to become a better person. Whenever I saw Cathy being rude to him or about him it made me mad because I wanted him to recover and not have her as a bad influence.

Q: What can be learned by the way Chris treats Jason in this book?

A: You can learn that since Chris knew Jason was in a bad place, he did not care what rumors Jason was spreading about him. Chris was in the same place and understands that Jason is not thinking clearly. Chris wants to bring God into Jason’s life in order to change the same way Chris did.

Q: A main theme of this story is the battle between the dark and the light. When one is in darkness, he or she cannot see anything clearly. How does the last chapter relate to the events of the story and the theme of light vs. darkness?

A: In the last chapter, Jason reflects on all of his mistakes from the past, as well as all of the new people in his life who have already tried to help him change. Jason is thinking about what he can do to get himself out of the darkness and bring himself into the light. Jason hopes he will be able to stay strong and fight off this darkness, in order to become a better person.

Q: What positive message does this book convey to readers?

A: This book tells readers that they can come out of bad situations no matter what it is. Chris is clearly doing well despite all of his previous partying antics, Chantal and all of Andy’s friends are able to deal with Andy’s injuries, and Jason is beginning to show some improvement. All of the characters are able to cope with the help of God. Chris improved when he let God into his life and is trying to influence Jason to do the same. Chantal and her friends also depend on God to help them get through Andy’s situation.

About Jenna:

Jenna Finnerty is a senior at Norwell High School in Norwell, Massachusetts. She is planning to major in nursing next year. Jenna has accrued years of experience as a cheerleader and gymnast. She also has a passion for traveling and looks forward to studying abroad in college.

Articles by Jenna:

Q&A on MLH #1 with Jenna Finnerty

The Right Person by Stacy Padula Accurately Depicts High School Social Challenges

Montgomery Lake High #2: When Darkness Tries To Hide
A powerful supercell is spawning above Montgomery Lake High School, while a separate storm is brewing in its halls. The question is–which one should Cathy Kagelli, Jason Davids, and their friends fear the most?



Published by Author Stacy A. Padula

Stacy Padula has spent the last 14 years working daily with teenagers as a college counselor, mentor, and life coach. She was named "Top Inspirational Author of the Year" for 2022 by the International Association of Top Professionals (New York, NY). In 2021, she was broadcast on the famous Reuters Building in Times Square as "Empowered Woman of the Year." Her Gripped book series is currently being adapted for TV by Emmy-winning producer Mark Blutman. She is the founder and CEO of Briley & Baxter Publications: a publishing company that donates a portion of its proceeds to animal rescues each month. She has edited and published a variety of titles, including Boston Bruins Anthem Singer Todd Angilly and Rachel Goguen's The Adventures of Owen & the Anthem Singer, LaTonya Pinkard of Netflix's Last Chance U's Nate & His Magic Lion, and former NHL player Norm Beaudin's memoir The Original: Living Life Through Hockey. Stacy resides in Plymouth, Massachusetts with her husband Tim and two miniature dachshunds, Briley and Baxter.