Monday, 3 July 2017

BEST OF CRIME with Barbara Copperthwaite

Welcome to my latest BEST OF CRIME feature, looking at crime writers' top picks, from their favourite author and fictional detective to their best writing tip. 

Today I'm delighted to welcome 


to share her BEST OF CRIME ... 

Elizabeth Haynes. Each of her novels is so different from one another, which is a real skill. So many people rave about Into The Darkest Corner – and I’m one of them.

Twelve Angry Men. The idea is brilliantly simple, with jurors discussing a case that seems open and shut – until one juror starts asking questions that may turn everything on its head. The film’s claustrophobic setting in one room helps to build the tension, as twelve ordinary people, who are strangers to one another, are forced to reveal their prejudices as they discuss the case.

I am currently obsessed with Line of Duty.

Tom Ripley. Patricia Highsmith managed to create a killer who somehow became a sort of anti-hero that readers loved so much that she wrote five books featuring him. She was an author way ahead of her time. 

I didn’t used to read detective novels until I came across Detective Sergeant Logan McRae, Stuart MacBride’s creation. The crimes he investigates are gritty and gory, but the banter between him and his colleagues is so deliciously dark and realistic that it always makes me laugh. Thanks to him, I started to read other detective series and crime authors, then psychological thrillers…and look at me now, writing my own! So DS Logan McRae will always have a special place in my heart.

I don’t want to say specifically, and give the game away, but for sheer ingenuity I have to make special mention of Ragdoll, by Daniel Cole. Every murder committed in that book is bizarre, unique, and ingenious.

It’s not crime, but my favourite death scene has to be Emma’s in Madame Bovary. She is a character who in many ways is modern – she wants to be adored, ideally she’d like to be a heroine in a novel. I’ve always thought that if she were around today, she’d apply to be on all manner of reality television shows. So when she decides to commit suicide by swallowing arsenic, she thinks it will a beautiful thing where she drifts to sleep looking gorgeous, just like in the romance books she has read. But her death is all too horrifyingly real, complete with agony, blood, and vomiting. The dark tragi-comedy of it is superbly handled.

I don’t have one blog or website I visit more than any other. Although I’m quite partial to FBI reports, which I frequently Google to gain insight into the criminal mind.

Sometimes it’s easy to miss mistakes because our eyes skim over them; we’re too close to our work. Reading aloud highlights any problems with the rhythm of a sentence, or clunky dialogue.

My writing is almost exclusively powered by chocolate and cake.

Barbara is the bestselling author of psychological thrillers INVISIBLE, FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD, and THE DARKEST LIES. Much of her success is thanks to her twenty-odd years' experience as a national newspaper and magazine journalist. She's interviewed the real victims of crime - and also those who have carried those crimes out. Thanks to people sharing their stories with her, she knows the emotional impact of violence and wrong-doing. That's why her novels are dark, realistic and tackle not just the crime but its repercussions. When not writing feverishly, she is often found hiding behind a camera, taking wildlife photographs.     

Find Barbara Copperthwaite on her website, FB page and on Twitter - @BCopperthwait


Publisher's description
A mother desperate for the truth. A daughter hiding a terrible secret.
Melanie Oak appeared to have the perfect life. Married to her childhood sweetheart, Jacob, the couple live with their beautiful, loving, teenage daughter, Beth, in a pretty village.
Nothing can shake her happiness - until the day that Beth goes missing and is discovered beaten almost to the point of death, her broken body lying in a freezing creek on the marshes near their home.
Consumed with grief, Melanie is determined to find her daughter’s attacker. Someone in the village must have seen something. Why won’t they talk? 
As Melanie tries to piece together what happened to Beth, she discovers that her innocent teenager has been harbouring some dark secrets of her own. The truth may lie closer to home and put Melanie’s life in terrible danger…

The Darkest Lies was published by Bookouture on 12 May 2017.

Look out for more BEST OF CRIME features coming soon.

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you for inviting me onto your blog! I really enjoyed creating this list of the Best of Crime :)