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Sunday 27 September 2015

ℚ The Girl In The Maze: Martha Covington Thrillers [1] - R.K. Jackson

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about The Girl In The Maze (, Alibi, 292 pages) a Psychological Thriller, book one of the new Martha Covington Thrillers series.

A Southern Gothic thriller with a twisty plot and echoes of Tana French.”—Dianne Emley, bestselling author of Killing Secrets

I’m very familiar with coastal Georgia, including Savannah and the islands.  Somehow, Jackson has captured the mysterious beauty and sense of impending danger one always feels there.  The setting itself becomes both a mirror and a character in this intriguing and suspenseful story.”—Barbara Lebow, Guggenheim Fellow, author of A Shayna Maidel

This scared the hell out of me.”—Laura Otis, MacArthur Fellow, author of Müller’s Lab

Author Q&A | Synopsis | Trailer | Teaser | About the Author | Tour Stops

A big welcome to R.K. Jackson, thank you for joining us on BooksChatter.

What was the inspiration for The Girl In The Maze?

"I was inspired by spending time in beautiful yet haunted marshlands of coastal Georgia, and learning about the struggle of the Geechee people of coastal Georgia (also known as Gullah) to preserve their ancestral land along with their unique and fragile culture."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"Not much of myself, per se, but I drew upon my early career experiences as a community journalist, covering the politics, the local color, the characters in a small southern town.   The protagonist is a woman with schizophrenia, and I have never been diagnosed with a mental illness.  However, I do often hear voices in my head.  They say things like: You call yourself a writer! Ha! This book will never sell."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover.  Can you tell us about your cover for The Girl In The Maze - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"I can't take any credit here.  It was done by the talented team at Random House Alibi.  My editor, Dana Isaacson, picked the striking color scheme himself."
Why should we read The Girl In The Maze and what sets it apart from the rest?   What makes your book unique?
"One of my favorite reviewers (so far) described the novel as "genre-crushing." I concede the point.  THE GIRL IN THE MAZE is a thriller, a mystery, and a puzzle story, with a touch of the paranormal; yet it’s also a character-driven story a young woman's struggle to develop her journalism career while fighting the demons of mental illness.

In many thrillers, the character with mental illness is the villain, an object of fear or terror (think of Norman Bates).  In this book, she's sympathetic and the hero of the story."
Can you tell us something quirky about The Girl In The Maze, its story and characters?
"My protagonist's first job is at The Marietta Tribune—a thinly veiled stand-in for my own first employer, The Marietta Daily Journal."
If you could / wished to turn The Girl In The Maze and the Martha Covington Thrillers series into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"Directors: The Coen brothers.

Locations: Sapelo and Cumberland Islands, Ga.

Cast: Oprah Winfrey as the mystical root worker, Jeff Bridges as the corrupt sheriff."
What do you like to write and read about? Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"I like working with suspense, with forays into horror and science fiction.  My favorite subjects in fiction are psychology and the natural world. "
What is your writing process?
"Nibble by nibble, with occasional sprints.  I work full-time and I'm a parent, so I have to write within whatever slivers of time I can find.  Sometimes I dictate ideas into a recording device during long commutes.  Fortunately for me, one's subconscious is always working in the background "
What is in store next?
"THE GIRL IN THE MAZE is the first in a two-book deal I signed with Alibi, so I'm working on a second thriller with some of the same characters from the first book.  Watch for The Kiss of the Sun in 2016. "
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?

I love that picture!  The look in those eyes...  thank you for sharing, and we look forward to reading The Girl in the Maze.

The Girl in the Maze - available NOW!

UK: purchase from purchase from Nook UK purchase from Kobo UK purchase from iTunes UK purchase from Google Books find on Goodreads
US: purchase from purchase from Barnes & Noble purchase from Kobo purchase from iTunes US

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