Don't You Dare by A.J. Waines #BlogBlitz #GuestPost
I am delighted to share with you a fab guest post by A.J.Waines on DON'T YOU DARE Blog Blitz today
What if your daughter becomes your enemy?
When barmaid, Rachel, discovers her soon-to-be-married daughter, Beth, pinned down by a stranger in the pub cellar, Rachel lashes out in panic and the intruder ends up dead. In desperation, Rachel convinces Beth they should cover up the crime and go ahead with the planned wedding in one month’s time.
Rachel, however, has her own reasons for not involving the police.
Hiding their dreadful secret is harder than they both imagined and as the big day approaches and the lies multiply, Beth becomes a liability. Rachel looks on in dismay at the hen party when, after too many drinks, Beth declares she’s about to make a special announcement. But before Beth can say a word, she disappears...
When two people share a chilling secret, can both hold their nerve?
This book explores the dark side of a mother-daughter relationship when pushed to the limit.
It will appeal to fans of authors like Ruth Ware, Clare Mackintosh and C.L. Taylor.
From Therapist to Crime Fiction Author
AJ Waines was a London psychotherapist, often working with ex-offenders, before she began transforming her experiences into gripping material for her own Psychological Thrillers. With her seventh novel about to be released, she has sold over 450,000 books and has been a number one bestselling author in the entire UK and Australian Kindle charts. Fascinated by secrets, lies and anything hidden under floorboards, she writes sinister suspense thrillers with mind-bending twists at the end!
Here, she tells us how she made the journey from psychotherapist to bestselling crime author:
I didn’t know I was going to be a crime-fiction writer. It rather crept up on me! After flitting through various admin jobs in my adult life, I qualified as a Psychotherapist in London and ran a private practice there for over 15 years. I’m a hardened introvert myself, intrigued by people’s inner-worlds, the place inside their heads where they reflect, plan, analyse. As a therapist, having access to patients’ deepest thoughts – the secret lives they largely keep hidden from even their closest friends – has been enthralling, challenging and deeply moving.
Through my practice, I got to work with ex-offenders from high-security institutions, such as Broadmoor and Rampton Hospitals, coming face to face, some might say, with the criminal mind. Surprisingly, however, I invariably came away from these encounters feeling sad, rather than disturbed. I found that a large number of those individuals who ended up committing terrible crimes felt they had absolutely no way out of their untenable situations: poverty, drug-addiction, domestic abuse and so on. They often lashed out as a last resort, protecting their kids, in some cases. Many of them ended up self-harming and most of them hadn’t committed ‘calculated’ crimes, reacting instead to situations on the spur of the moment. Having said that, unfortunately, there are also many wayward psychopaths out there on the loose in the world.
My exclusive opportunities to discuss crimes and explore the history of offenders would have provided any crime fiction writer with sought-after ‘behind the scenes’ material - but I never thought about writing any of it down. I’d written psychology self-help books and had these published, but the idea of writing a novel seemed beyond me. I’d never even written a proper short story. I loved the idea of writing a mystery or suspense thriller – but decided ‘proper’ writers had a gift I didn’t possess.
That all changed when I read Stephen King’s book On Writing. He talks about starting with ‘an incident’ and then suggests focusing on just getting the story down. His advice seems to be to forget about whether it sounds good, just keep the action going and see where it leads. I set out to write 2,500 words at first – then couldn’t stop. In a few months, I had a novel (not very well plotted, I admit, but it got me a London Agent). Sadly, the book didn’t sell, so I was forced to move on, but the plus side is that I was completely smitten with writing by then and quickly when on to write two more, The Evil Beneath and Girl on a Train. I submitted these next two to a new top agent and was extremely relieved to be offered presentation again. We got overseas deals and everything kicked off from there.
Because of my knowledge and interest in psychotherapy, my books are Psychological Thrillers. On the one hand, I love writing about unusual psychological disorders and on the other, I like to explore the chilling situations ordinary individuals might find themselves in. I’m intrigued by the choices people make, their motives, drives and fears. I’m fascinated by the face we show the world, and the one we keep deeply buried inside; the dark world of shame, guilt, jealousy and revenge some of us rarely bring out into the open.
In my new book, Don’t you Dare, a mistake, then a misunderstanding leave a mother and daughter trapped in a terrible dilemma that will affect their lives forever. Neither of them plans to commit a crime, but due to the way events unfold, something terrible takes place that sends their lives spiralling out of control. Don’t you Dare also explores what happens when two people are forced to share a chilling secret and one of them loses their nerve. It’s the kind of situation that almost anyone could find themselves in! It’s a nail-biting ride!
Don’t you Dare will be published by Bloodhound Books on 8th May. It will be available from all Amazon outlets.
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AJ Waines has sold over 450,000 books worldwide and topped the UK and Australian Kindle Charts in 2015 & 2016 with her number one bestseller, Girl on a Train. Following fifteen years as a psychotherapist, she is now a full-time novelist with publishing deals in UK, France, Germany, Norway, Hungary and USA (audiobooks).
Her fourth psychological thriller, No Longer Safe sold over 30,000 copies in the first month, in thirteen countries. AJ Waines has been featured in The Wall Street Journal and The Times and has been ranked a Top 10 UK author on Amazon KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing). She lives in Hampshire, UK, with her husband.
Find AJ Waines’ books here, visit her website and blog, or join her on Twitter, Facebook or get her Newsletter.