Share this:

Over the past ten years, I’ve written eight books. Each of them has been a cross between a thriller, suspense and romance.

Back in 2015, at a time when I’d already been writing for two years, I met my very first editor. I had a one to one with her at the RNA Conference and during the interview, she asked me if I wrote thrillers or romance. Her closing line was, ‘I love your author voice, but I think you need to decide, choose just one of them and stick to it.’

Fortunately, I’ve never really followed rules. Deep inside, I honestly believe that the two genres can mix. And that even at the worst time in people’s lives, they still have the ability to fall in love, find romance, or simply feel passion. My heroines also have a fully developed life. They have friends, pets, jobs, children and family members. Albeit, quite often those families and lives are fractured, broken and in need of repair. However, in my mind they are real people and therefore, I want to give my readers a full experience by making the characters’ lives as real, difficult, traumatic, loving and confusing as I possibly can.

In The Serial Killer’s Girl, it’s very clear very early in the story that Lexi is unsure about her relationship with Nate. She’s mistrusting in his actions, doesn’t understand why he’s suddenly acting secretive and when her birth mother is murdered in the same way that her serial killer father used to kill, she very quickly realises that both she and her daughter could be murdered next.

Having no alternative but to keep both herself and Isla safe, she flees to her childhood home. Back to Lindisfarne, and into the arms of Maggie, the foster mother who brought her up, gave her love and protected her at all costs. On the island, she feels loved. But she also feels nervous, threatened and confused. She has feelings that she can’t understand, especially when she realises that her teenage crush Harry is back on the island and the feelings she’d previously had for him return.

In real life, people have real emotions. No day is the same and they often feel confused, and they have indecision, which makes their day so much more difficult than it should be.

My theory is… just because it’s fiction (and I say the word ‘just’ with a lot of love for books and for telling a story), it shouldn’t really be different to real life? Our heroines can’t just have a lovely life. Not when you’re writing a thriller. They should have bad days, awful times, and days when their life is threatened. Then, while all of that is happening… sometimes, just sometimes, something amazing happens. And even on the worst day of their life… they can still have moments of pure clarity, a time when they can feel loved, cared for, or even just safe. Even if it’s only for a moment.

The Serial Killer’s Girl has been shortlisted by the RNA for The Jackie Collins Thriller Award.


Social Boldwood