Guest Blog: Louise Phillips
Posted by Susan Condon
THE DOLL’S HOUSE BLOG TOUR
I am delighted to welcome friend and crime fiction author, Louise Phillips, as a guest as she continues on The Doll’s House Blog Tour.
Let me introduce you to the trailer:
When it went live, The Doll’s House book trailer, caused quite a stir.
You can be view it here, but be warned – it’s not for the faint-hearted!
Survived that? Check out the latest reviews:
THE DOLL’S HOUSE has been described by crime writer, Niamh O’ Connor, as ‘chilling, mesmerising. Gets under your skin and stays with you,’ and by Myles Mc Weeney of the Irish Independent, as, ‘A gripping, suspenseful story, peopled with well-drawn characters…’
And now, at last, the book itself:
The Doll’s House
“Middle-aged male, multiple stab wounds, found drowned in the canal. You have my number. Call me.”
This is the message criminal psychologist Dr Kate Pearson receives one cold Saturday morning from Detective Inspector O’Connor, spoken in his usual curt manner. The middle-aged male in question is Keith Jenkins, the host of a popular TV programme, and as Kate and O’Connor begin their investigation, they find themselves faced with more questions than answers.
The past . . .
Following her mother’s recent death, Clodagh has begun to explore her past – her memories of her father, who died in a mysterious accident, and the dark tragedy that seeped through the cracks of her childhood home. When she begins to visit a hypnotherapist, scenes from her childhood begin to take shape, with interjections from a sometimes sinister cast of dolls.
. . . is waiting . . .
As Kate continues to investigate the disturbing details of the vicious murder, she is drawn closer to Clodagh’s unsettling family history. What terrible events took place in the Hamilton house all those years ago? And what connects them to the recent murder?
Time is running out for Clodagh and Kate. And the killer has already chosen his next victim…
Now over to Louise for some questions:
What do you feel makes for a great character – one that the reader will remember a long time after the final page?
Creating characters can be a bit like life, sometimes they can surprise you! And by that I mean that on occasions they can arrive practically fully developed on the page, and at other times, you have to dig quite deep. I think for the most part I know I have a strong character when their voice is constantly in my ear, so that when I go to write, it’s almost like you’re not the one doing the writing. We all have our favourite memorable characters from novels, but by and large the ones that stay with you are the ones that strike a strong emotional cord. I like a character that runs through your bloodstream the deeper into the novel you get. If at the end of a book, a part of you is already missing that character, then it is undoubtedly a memorable one.
There was quite an amount of research involved in The Doll’s House and part of it involved hypnosis and regression. Knowing what your character, Clodagh, uncovered, how did you feel while you were awaiting the countdown for your hypnosis session?
I think researching hypnotic regression for The Doll’s House reminded me how complicated our minds are. I was fully committed to the idea, and really believed it would happen. I had no idea that my conscious mind would block me from being regressed. Perhaps with the research I had learnt too much. The whole area fascinated me, which is why I chose to write about it in the first place. We all think we remember things as they happened, but we don’t. We constantly compromise our memory, as each time we recall an event, instead of going back to the original memory, we shortcut back to our last recall. So, getting back to your question, I was both nervous and excited. I hope to make further efforts to regress, and when I do, I’ll let you know how I got on.
It looks like The Doll’s House was a sell-out at its recent launch in the Gutter Bookshop. Were you surprised to find an even bigger turnout than at your debut novel, Red Ribbons?
Surprised and delighted. I was thrilled to see so many people there, and I think in part it was a testament to RED RIBBONS that so many people were keen to pick up a copy of THE DOLL’S HOUSE. I was amazed that whilst signing copies, on a number of occasions I looked up and saw that people were starting to read the novel on the queue! So far it’s got some fantastic reviews, so fingers crossed. The story seems to have really struck a nerve with people, and as a writer, you can’t ask for more than that.
About The Author:
Born in Dublin, Louise Phillips returned to writing in 2006, after raising her family. That year, she was selected by Dermot Bolger as an emerging talent.
Her work has been published as part of many anthologies, including County Lines from New Island, and various literary journals. In 2009, she won
the Jonathan Swift Award for her short story Last Kiss, and in 2011 she was a winner in the Irish Writers’ Centre Lonely Voice platform. She has also been short-listed for the Molly Keane Memorial Award, Bridport UK, and long-listed twice for the RTE Guide/Penguin Short Story Competition.
Her bestselling debut novel, Red Ribbons, was shortlisted for Best Irish Crime Novel of the Year (2012) in the Irish Book Awards. The Doll’s House is her second novel and has recently hit the book shelves with a vengeance!
I can promise, an enjoyable read awaits you . . .
The Doll’s House and Red Ribbons are available from Louise’s site here.
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About Susan CondonIrish Writer and Poet. Award winning, published short story writer. My debut novel - a crime fiction thriller, based in New York - is searching for a home, while I'm cracking on with the next in the series.
Posted on August 21, 2013, in Guest Blogs, Writer Profiles and tagged Amazon, author, bridport, clodagh, crime fiction, dermot bolger, gutter bookshop, irish independent, irish writers centre, jonathan swift award, kate pearson, Louise Phillips, molly keane memorial award, myles mcweeney, Niamh O'Connor, o'connor, Penguin, Red Ribbons, RTÉ Guide, The Dolls House, trailer, UK. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.