Hey there, Recently, a reader wrote to thank me for writing stories she doesn't have to hide from her granddaughter. And that made me think of a story from my own life.
When I was a little girl I would visit with my grandparents every summer. They lived in Cambridge, a 45-minute drive from my parents' home – a whole other world away when you are young.
I loved visiting them. My nanna and grandad were kind and quiet. My grandfather was a master gardener. He taught me about growing flowers and vegetables. Their son, my uncle, was disabled and lived with them. He loved music, tapping his feet to the radio for hours every day. My nanna taught me to knit and gave me a knitting project every time I visited. I would be so excited to complete it. I would eat porridge with a crust of brown sugar, drink Camp coffee, eat Angel Delight (butterscotch was my favorite,) and simply have a lovely time.
Until one visit.
It wasn't deliberate of course, but the night after it happened, I couldn't sleep. The experience caused lasting damage. I was so terrified and upset that my nanna found me pacing my bedroom, making the ceiling of the parlour below creak.
My grandparents kept abreast of the news via a small black and white television, a radio, and a daily newspaper. My grandad loved a bet on the horses and my teeny-tiny nanna loved the hurly-burly of wrestling. But no one thought about the danger lurking in their home for a little girl like me.
I was an advanced reader. At 7, I had a reading ability far beyond my years. And that meant that I could read the front of the tabloid paper they read every day and usually discarded on a chair until it was thrown away.
One day, proud of my new reading skills, I read it.
On the front page, I was introduced in excruciating detail to horrors I was way too young to process. I wanted to scrub the images from the inside of my brain and eventually sitting on my nanna's knee in that bedroom, late at night, way past my bedtime, I cried out the images that had been unimaginable to me until that day. Only then was I able to sleep.
I still remember the details of that story. The memory is still horrific.
I am a sensitive person, a sensitive reader. I write for other highly sensitive readers. My goal is to craft intelligent, well-written mysteries with likable characters for readers like you.
The risk is that they might be dull, but with a hint of darkness and plots that equally make you smile, my stories take you on an emotional journey without making you feel that you'll be flung out of the carriage you are riding in. They deliver you safely to your destination. The journey will have been breathtaking. You'll have enjoyed your trip.
Like the reader above, you won't have to hide my books from your most innocent loved ones because I write murder mysteries that won't scare you to death.
If you would like to read a story set in Cambridge featuring places I visited as a child, read Chaos in Cambridge, a prequel to my Annabelle series, a free story exclusively for subscribers of my newsletter.