My novel, Dangerous Waters, is a romantic mystery. The story focuses on a young woman, Jeanne Le Page as she returns to her homeland of Guernsey (UK) after an absence of 15 years. She had left in a hurry after surviving a tragedy which killed her family. She has now come back to sort out her late grandmother’s affairs and take possession of the cottage she left to her. Jeanne wants to sell and leave but events change her mind and she’s drawn into uncovering family secrets buried in the cottage and, ultimately, she finds out the truth behind that long ago accident. She had suffered traumatic amnesia but had experienced nightmares for years. Her search for truth not only helps her to live and love again but puts her life in danger as someone on the island doesn’t want her to remember . . .
How much of yourself is hidden in the characters in the book?
Quite a bit I think! I feel that I based Jeanne, in particular, on myself to some extent. A younger version of me, though! There’s another character, Molly, who shares my profession of psychotherapy.
How long did it take to write you book?
About 6 months for the initial first draft and then nearly 6 years (on & off) to re-write, edit and polish to a publishable standard.
Did you do any research for the book? If so, how did you do it?
The book is set in contemporary Guernsey where I lived for many happy years so it was easy for me to describe the Island and how people live there. But there is another story in the book that relates to the German Occupation in WWII and I had to do a fair amount of research for that. I interviewed people who had lived there at that time and also read books from the local Guernsey library. Another topic that figures strongly in Dangerous Waters is food – both the local cuisine based on handed down recipes and that of mid-nineteenth century French haute cuisine. For that I researched both books and on the internet.
How has your background influenced your writing?
Well, as a former resident of Guernsey, I felt very drawn to writing a novel set there. I loved the island and still do and I feel this shines through in my book. It’s what readers have told me, anyway! Also, as a psychotherapist I was in a strong position to include the use of hypnosis in this book. On a more general level, it’s helped me understand people and how they cope with loss.
What are you working on right now?
‘Finding Mother’, a novel which traces a young woman’s journey to find her natural mother. The story is set mainly in Guernsey but there are excursions to England, Jersey and Spain. The story will involve the histories of three women – Nicole, her natural mother Hélene and her grandmother, Eve.
What do you like to read?
I’m really into suspense and mysteries these days. I like books which twist and turn with an unexpected ending. But I also prefer an element of romance!
Do you keep a pen and notepad on your bedside table?
Sure do. It’s very handy for that occasional ‘epiphany’ moment – or just to write down something I need to do the next day!
What one word describes how you feel when you write?
Who designed your cover?
A lovely young professional designer called Claire Siggery, a friend of my son’s. I was absolutely thrilled with the result! She can be reached here http://www.clairesiggery.co.uk
Where can people learn more about you and your book?
There’s my website – http://www.dangerouswaters.co.uk
The book is available on amazon US & UK – http://www.amazon.com/Dangerous-Waters-Mystery-Guernsey-ebook/dp/B007P1EIAU