Psychological thrillers, crime, and domestic noir novels are all genres I have enjoyed reading so it made sense that I would write books along the same lines. Like most authors, I get asked a lot about where I get the ideas for my books, especially as the darker themes may seem a little at odds with what people see on my social media profiles!
Writing about crime and murder is not always easy and I consider myself to be a fairly happy and optimistic person – so it made me curious: where do I get the ability to write about such events? Do I have a dark side or just an active imagination? Perhaps a bit of both, but I believe the former only arrived after the birth of my first son. It’s strange that a joyful event such as the arrival of children could reveal such dark thoughts. But it’s true. Like many new mothers, I found it difficult to watch the news and during the day, I used to be in a state of constant vigilance as I watched over my new-born, while at night I had half-baked nightmares about the unspeakable. On the flip side, I also remember the profound sense of joy and happiness as I held my son and the primal urge to protect was overwhelming. While it’s been almost two years now, I still remember that double-edged maelstrom of emotion of those new-born days and it’s been a powerful influence in my writing including my new book, The Home.
A psychological thriller, the novel is about a young woman called Angela who was abandoned when she was just a few days old to a children’s home in London. The home’s manager, Ray, takes the girls off to his den while Ray’s wife Kath has a set of wooden spoons which she uses to beat the children when they misbehave. It’s no surprise then, when wealthy couple James and Rosemary come to choose a child to adopt, Angela is desperate to escape. But the scars of childhood remain and when Angela’s search for her birth mother Evelyn is successful, their reunion brings its own problems. As strange and sinister events start to unfold, Evelyn fears she may not survive her daughter’s return. Set in the 1970s and ‘80s, the book is about adoption, motherhood, family, marriage, deceit, and betrayal.
During the writing of The Home, I picked one thread and channelled that into a what if situation. I wanted to take a look at complex relationships going back to childhood, when we all deserve to feel safe. The novel explores how everyone has multiple sides to their personality and to what extent a person’s actions are shaped by influences beyond their control.
The Home released on 4 September and is my second book after my debut novel, The Good Mother published October 2017. If you enjoy a dark thriller, then please feel free to read my books.
In the meantime (and for a sunnier experience ☺) please feel free to connect with me on social media. I would love to hear from you.
*This post first appeared on Ariafiction.com