Published by Avon
Ebook & Paperback : 5 October 2017
I’m delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for Beneath the Skin by Caroline England, published yesterday. I haven’t had an opportunity to read and review yet but I will be as soon as I can find a reading slot however in the meantime, I have a guest post from Caroline to share with you.
About the book:
No-one remembers your past. But you do.
‘Antonia, Antonia. My name is Antonia.’
It’s been her name for many years. But sometimes, like tonight, she forgets.
Antonia has a secret. A secret so dark and so deep that she can barely admit it to herself. Instead, she treats herself to Friday night sessions of self-harm while her husband David is at the pub, and her best friend Sophie is drinking too much wine a few doors down.
Nobody close to her knows the truth about what the teenage Antonia saw all those years ago. No-one, that is, except her mother. But Candy is in a care home now, her mind too addled to remember the truth. Antonia is safe. Isn’t she?
The lies start small. They always do. But when the tightly woven story you’ve told yourself begins to unravel, the truth threatens to come to the surface. And then what’s going to happen?
What has inspired my writing?
by Caroline England
Writers are often asked what has inspired their writing. For me it’s both authors and real life!
I discovered Roald Dahl’s Switch Bitch and his other short story collections as a teenager. I loved the intriguing spiteful tales with their dark twists and surprises. Crime fiction has always been my first choice of holiday reading, from Agatha Christie as a child through to Ruth Rendell, Minette Walters, Val McDermid, Ian Rankin and more recently Mark Billingham and Jo Nesbo. And now I’ve found all my fabulous writing colleagues at Avon HarperCollins! I adored Mary Wesley’s surprisingly risqué stories and I’m a big fan of Maggie O’Farrell and Kate Atkinson’s contemporary books. Though my novels are more ‘domestic noir’ than standard crime fiction, I think my writing has been influenced by the blend of these two genres, so I write about contemporary lives but with intrigue, complications, dark edges and secrets. And, of course, love! When Kate Atkinson masterfully blended contemporary and crime in her Jackson Brodie novels, I was ecstatic!
By profession I’m a solicitor. As a trainee I worked mainly in criminal law, representing burglars, car thieves and even one or two murderers! After that I practiced divorce and matrimonial work, then went on to do professional indemnity cases, representing professionals such as solicitors and surveyors who’d made a mistake – or not – as the case might be. All these experiences influence my writing as I’m captivated by people and the human condition; how we’re all different but the same, how we’re all flawed and frail but put on a brave face, when there’s so much going on #BeneathTheSkin! Whether dealing with crime, divorce or professional negligence, a solicitor is like a counsellor, you’re seeing people naked, effectively; raw, human emotion. When I left the law, I became a volunteer mediator, which again was fascinating. This time I heard not one, but two or more points of view, two or more versions of truth, which is very much what story telling is about.
I always say I started putting pen to paper ten or so years ago, but that’s not strictly true. Divorce petitions and affidavits; pleadings and statements, detailed reports to insurers. The list goes on and on. Turns out my creative writing skills were developed at work without me knowing it!
At the time of posting this, Beneath the Skin can be downloaded from Amazon UK for 99p
About the author:
Born Yorkshire lass, Caroline studied Law at the University of Manchester and stayed over the border. Caroline was a divorce and professional indemnity lawyer and instigated her jottings when she deserted the law to bring up her three lovely daughters. In addition to the publication of her short story collection, Watching Horsepats Feed the Roses by ACHUKAbooks, Caroline has had short stories and poems published in a variety of literary publications and anthologies. She was shortlisted for the Impress Prize 2015, in the Pulp Idol 2016 finals and long listed for the UK Novel Writing Competition 2017.
Her debut novel, Beneath the Skin, will be published by Avon HarperCollins on 5 October 2017.