Hello dear readers, we have a quick review and the main feature of today’s blog – Guest post by the author. The genre is #mystery #thriller and tackles some #mentalhealth issues in a very realistic manner.
Don’t forget to check out the other blogs on the tour.
Title – 11 Missed Calls
Author – Elisabeth Carpenter
Publisher – Avon
Published – July 2018
Rating – 3.5/5
Location set in – England
I felt the story had a very delicate balance of emotions. The characters definitely looked like walking a tight rope of some intense, devastating and at times out of one’s control emotions.
The story does tackle sensitive mental health issues in a very matter of fact of manner. The way the story progressed, I held my breath at moments when it seemed one of the characters would just loose it and go mad. The ending was just what it was and not really expected or something over the top.
I always wondered how the author’s felt writing about such dark, grim subjects so it was only natural for me to ask this story’s author for a Guest post explaining just that. Happy Reading.
****** Guest Post ******
How writing dark content affects me
My books so far have dealt with many dark issues: missing children, family secrets, affairs, and mental illness. My second novel, 11 Missed Calls, is about a young mother suffering from post-natal depression, who disappears on holiday, leaving behind her two children – one, just a few months old.
The inspiration for this novel came from an article I read a few years ago in which a mother had been missing for over twenty years, leaving behind her husband and children. A private investigator took it upon himself to research the case, and found the missing woman living in another town, leading a new life. She didn’t want any contact with her family.
I wrote from first person point of view, so it was important that I try to understand what my characters are going through. To do this, I read memoirs and articles online where people describe their experiences. In my previous book, the missing person was a child, but with 11 Missed Calls, it’s an adult. This raises questions for the family left behind. Are they alive or dead? Did I do something to make them leave? Special occasions are poignant and not a day goes by when they don’t think about that person. It remains a mystery as to what happened, and the mind can’t help but conjure the circumstances that befell the missing person. It was heart-breaking to read people’s experiences; I couldn’t help being touched by it. That they never have a resolution to what happened to their loved ones is devastating. It certainly has made me over protective with my own children.
It can be difficult writing about such challenging issues all the time. I’ve said to myself that I’ll write a happy book next time – but I probably wouldn’t know where to start with that. I don’t think it’s as interesting to read a book where everything is going well for someone. It’s hard to empathise with someone perfect.
I’ve written from the points of view of a killer and a child abductor, but people who do bad things still have affable traits – they have to love something. So, in some sense I give my anti-heroes some likeable qualities, so I feel a little more comfortable in their mindset (which is actually mine … it can get a little weird explaining it!)
To counteract the dark issues in my books, I try to end with a satisfying resolution, though not necessarily happy for everyone involved. Some aspects of real life are awful, if you read the news, so I think I’m used to switching off when I close the computer.
I have a group of friends who also write about dark issues; they’re lovely, kind and funny. If I’m having a bad day, writing a particularly harrowing scene, there is always at least one online at some point during the day to cheer me up (and I hope I do the same for them!).
Libby Carpenter lives in Preston with her family. She completed a BA in English Literature and Language with the Open University in 2011.
Libby was awarded a Northern Writers’ New Fiction award, and was longlisted for Yeovil Literary Prize (2015 and 2016) and the MsLexia Women’s Novel award (2015). She loves living in the north of England and sets most of her stories in the area. She currently works as a book keeper. Her first novel, 99 Red Balloons, became a bestseller in 2017.
Blogger – Reviewer ~ Bharti