Today Jill Barry answers a few questions and tells us about her psychological thriller The House Sitter.
If you could only read one more book before reading became illegal what would it be and why?
I thought I would struggle with this question and I certainly have! But I’m a huge fan of Rosie Thomas and have all her novels on my bookshelves. ‘Constance’ lives up to what it says on the tin and is truly ‘A lush and sweeping voyage of self-discovery’
If you could be a character in any book, who would it be?
I used to dress up as Mary Mouse, complete with lipstick and my mum’s high heels, when I was a small child. Later on, Little Women became a favourite and I always admired Jo March. Professor Bauer always seemed delightful, too. Having revisited the book over the years and particularly now there’s a recent new movie adaptation, I realise how ahead of her time Jo was.
What is the title of the book that you are going to tell us about?
The House Sitter – my first psychological suspense
How did you come up with the title?
The couple featured in my novel live at The Sugar House, but I didn’t want the name of their residence to be the book’s title. My scheming protagonist needed to be more than merely a neighbour and friend, and suddenly she became the house sitter.
Where did the idea for this book come from?
I spent several years living in a rural Welsh village in the heart of idyllic countryside so that area was what I saw when writing village scenes. Also, a friend had recently put her house on the market and I began to wonder what might happen if one of my friend’s neighbours decided to try and prevent the sale. Needless to say, I didn’t employ any of the tactics my manipulative protagonist uses.
Which character in this book is your favourite and why?
I can imagine becoming friendly with Bethan Harley who is the estate agent trying to sell The Sugar House. She’s attractive, good at her job and a loving mum. Sadly, she and her husband are struggling to maintain their relationship. Although Bethan becomes attracted to the man who wants to buy The Sugar House, she doesn’t attempt to take this any further in order to ‘get her own back’ on her husband. My Bethan character flatly refused to allow me to put her on the path to infidelity and she’s to be admired for this. I’d like to say here that my local book club members all decided Ray Kirby, prospective purchaser, made them think of actor Hugh Jackman, albeit a little younger.
Where can we buy the book?
The House Sitter is available as paperback or eBook via this link https://www.amazon.co.uk/House-Sitter-Jill-Barry/dp/1786157268
OR from your local independent bookshop, also from waterstones.com in paperback.
How can your readers keep in touch with you?
Readers can check out my website: www.jillbarry.com and use my contact form
Or, via Twitter @barry_jill
Or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/JillBarryBooks/
Thank you so much for stopping by, come back again soon.
It’s been great to respond to your interesting questions, Colette. Thank you so much for inviting me on to your blog.
Wishing you well with your writing,