For those not in the know, it was the half term holidays last week and, I must confess, it’s all still a bit new to me. My son is in his first term of Reception class and I’m trying to get used to all this ‘term time’ malarkey / planning around a set timetable / not being able to piss off to Vegas anymore. However, we dived into the spirit of the occasion and drove the Rossmobile (yes, I really did just refer to my car as the ‘Rossmobile’) up to Northumberland, where we are the middle of trying to buy a house. Cue various appointments with builders, plumbers…you name it, we met them. Thank God Ethan’s grandparents are kindly souls who helped us out!
Now, we’re back in Somerset and, as it’s the start of a brand new week, that means it’s time for our next Author Introduction. This week, it’s an absolute pleasure to welcome Angela Marsons to the blog.
Angela is the author of the Amazon Bestselling DI Kim Stone series – Silent Scream, Evil Games, Lost Girls, Play Dead, Blood Lines and Dead Souls and her books have sold more than 2 million copies in 2 years. She lives in the Black Country with her partner, their cheeky Golden Retriever and a swearing parrot.
She first discovered her love of writing at Junior School when actual lessons came second to watching other people and quietly making up her own stories about them. Her report card invariably read “Angela would do well if she minded her own business as well as she minds other people’s”.
After years of writing relationship based stories (The Forgotten Woman and Dear Mother) Angela turned to Crime, fictionally speaking of course, and developed a character that refused to go away. She is signed to Bookouture for a total of 16 books in the Kim Stone series and her books have been translated into more than 20 languages. Her last two books – Blood Lines and Dead Souls – reached the #1 spot on Amazon on pre-orders alone.
Now that is seriously impressive! Let’s find out a little more about this lovely lady…
- Tell us a little about yourself – don’t be shy!
I am a crime writer from the Black Country in the West Midlands. The seventh instalment of the DI Kim Stone crime series is due to be published on 3rd November. I divide my time between the Black Country and Welshpool with my partner, Julie, our devilish Golden Labrador named Roxy and our swearing parrot called Nelson.
- How about your latest book – what can readers look forward to when they pick it up?
My latest book, Broken Bones, covers the subjects of grooming, prostitution and the modern slave trade. That people ownership still exists in the 21st century is unbelievable to me and begged to be explored.
- Who is your hero in real life and in fiction?
My hero in real life is without doubt my partner, Julie. She has faced severe physical challenges since her late teens and still endures horrific pain on a daily basis. Her limitations have prevented her doing many things but she refuses to even consider having a half empty cup and only finds the positive in any given situation. She inspires me every day.
My fictional hero is Kathy Mallory from the Carol O’Connell novels. She suffered a horrific childhood and is borderline sociopathic but still manages to fight for the underdog and do the right thing.
- Who are your three favourite writers – and why?
I love anything by Val McDermid but especially the Tony Hill series. He is a character that sucked me in from the very first book. I find that I am drawn to characters who are a little bit off and not quite normal.
Although not a novelist I am a huge fan of Aaron Sorkin who penned amongst other things the film A Few Good Men and The West Wing. His skill in combining drama, lifelike characters, emotion and humour is just awe-inspiring.
Karin Slaughter is another favourite of mine. She is not afraid to make brave decisions and combining the Grant County series with the Will Trent series of books was a stroke of pure genius.
- When you’re not writing, what is your favourite way to spend your time?
I enjoy nothing more than curling up on the sofa with a book from one of my favourite authors. With reading time now at a premium this always feels like a real luxury being able to switch off and just enjoy the craft of someone else. Away from words I enjoy exploring the countryside and finding breath taking new views.
- What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?
I would say that realising my lifelong dream of writing for a living is by far my greatest achievement. Such aspirations were not encouraged at my school, where we were instructed to learn to type. I left school at sixteen and wrote around full time employment for more than 25 years until Bookouture published my first crime novel, Silent Scream, in February 2015
- What was your favourite book as a child?
As a child, I always enjoyed Enid Blyton but I would say my favourite book back then was Three into Two Won’t Go by Andrea Newman which I discovered probably earlier than I should have due to my English teacher encouraging me to read above my age. It was the book that inspired me to want to write the stories and not just read them.
- Have you read any books recently that have really captured your imagination?
I recently read A Daughter’s Courage by Renita D’Silva. I adore her books and they always transport me effortlessly into the world of her excellently drawn characters and compelling storylines that span Britain and India. I learn something every time I read her books but the subject of a Devadasi’s life in 1920’s India captivated me and stayed with me for a very long time.
- If the Prime Minister knocked at your front door and asked to borrow a book, which one would you recommend they read?
I would recommend Bella’s Christmas Bake Off by Sue Watson. I adore this lady’s writing and wicked sense of humour and this book was filled with laugh out loud moments throughout the book and, quite honestly, I think the Prime Minister could do with a bit of a laugh.
- Finally, if you could be any character from a movie, which would it be?
Oooh, love this question. I think I would like to be Clarice Starling from The Silence of the Lambs. The idea of having to pit my wits against the formidable Hannibal Lecter both terrifies and intrigues me.
…Thanks, Angela! Some great answers and I would love to meet that swearing parrot, one day! The Silence of the Lambs is one of my all-time favourite movies, so I definitely agree with your choice there. Wishing you every success with your latest book and thanks for joining us!
For now, it’s back to motivational Monday music (in my case, Ludacris peppered with the Guns ‘n’ Roses) while I polish and buff my next release.
Have a wonderful week!