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Tuesday, 14 July 2020

ℚ Relative Silence - Carrie Stuart Parks

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about Relative Silence (, Thomas Nelson, 336 pages), a full-length suspense with a thread of romance.

“Danger and drama abide in this tale that takes a walk on the perilous side. With a flair for the macabre, the story will linger in your head long after the last page.” — Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author

“One of the most engrossing suspense novels I’ve read in a long time. Pitch-perfect pacing and characterization along with Parks’s knowledgeable hand with forensics kept me on the edge of my seat.” — Colleen Coble, USA TODAY bestselling author

|| Synopsis || Teaser: KCR Preview || Author Q&A || About the Author || Giveaway & Tour Stops ||

A very warm welcome to Carrie Stuart Parks; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter!
"Hello and greetings, Flora!  I am so delighted to be here with you today.  I know you like to have the author’s music playing in the background, but  . . . well, I blushingly admit the only music I have on is to keep the dogs from barking.

I have four house dogs, two of which (both Great Pyrenees) feel the need to bark at everything.  Or nothing.  Place a coffee  cup down too hard.  Bark.  A cat peeks in a window.  Bark.  A herd of deer prance around the yard.  Really bark.  The easy listening music station on television renders them comatose.  Please don’t play it. 😀"
Dogs vs moose in January 2015
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?  And why should we read Relative Silence and what sets it apart from the rest? 
"I live in the mountains of North Idaho, where deer, moose, elk, coyotes, bear, cougars, and a vast number of other wild critters also live.  I grew up here on the family’s 685 acre ranch.  I’m firmly a westerner.  My dad’s sport in college was intercollegiate rodeo.  It’s no wonder that most of my mystery/suspense/thriller books take place in the west.

Before I go on, let me back up and say that my “day job” is teaching forensic art to law enforcement professionals across the US and Canada.  I’m both a fine and forensic artist—both fields which find themselves woven throughout my books.

Forensic art is any art used by law enforcement or legal proceedings such as composites, facial reconstruction, unknown remains, courtroom sketches, crime scene diagrams, demonstrative evidence, and so on.  I worked for a number of years for a crime lab before going out freelance.

“Write what you know” is an absolute for me when it comes to the relatively unknown field of forensic art, and I use my cases to inspire my plots.  I believe this is one characteristic of my books that sets them apart—authentic knowledge of this aspect of forensics combined with extensive research to provide a rich palette to unfold the stories."
What was the inspiration for Relative Silence?
"One of the locations where we offer classes is Mount Pleasant, South Carolina—very much not the wild west.  My husband and I get together with a group of friends — and fellow forensic artists — to rent a large house on the beach on the Isle of Palms.  It’s an event that I look forward to every year.  I got to thinking about placing a story there on an invented island named Curlew.  And what if . . .?

With a location selected, I met with my brainstorming friends in Phoenix where I was teaching at the Phoenix Police Department Crime Lab.  My bestselling, award-winning novelist friends—Colleen Coble, Lynette Eason, Robin Caroll, and Pam Hillman, along with author Voni Harris and my agent, Karen Solem opened the floodgates of imagination with a whole series of what if. . . ?

The brainstorming crew in 2019: (clockwise from back left) Voni Harris, Carrie Stuart Parks, Robin Caroll, Colleen Coble, agent Karen Solem, Lynette Eason and Pam Hillman.
I have certain perimeters for my books, and Relative Silence was no exception.  They would feature forensic or fine art.  As an AKC dog show judge, I would simply have to have a dog (or several.)  There would be a thread of historical events impacting present day characters.  A hint of romance and a faith thread."
Can you tell us something quirky about Relative Silence, its story and characters?
"The story line in Relative Silence swirls around the Boone family—somewhat of a wealthy/politically active Kennedy-like southern family.

The matriarch is an avid birdwatcher and named all her children after birds.

The protagonist, Sandpiper (Piper) Boone is a woman who lost her only child fifteen years earlier in a tragic accident.  Piper has never fully recovered from that event and, after attempting a life a career in the ‘outside world,’ has retreated to the lush family vacation home on Curlew Island, South Carolina.  When she’s caught in the cross-hairs of a spree killer who opened fire on an outdoor cafe, she’s rescued by handsome (of course) forensic artist, Tucker Landry.  Tucker has his own boatload of baggage.

Together, Tucker and Piper have to unravel the lies, deceptions, and hidden secrets that’s concealed scandals and murder in her own family.  With a hurricane taking aim at the island, time is running out."
What is in store next?
"While Relative Silence was at the editors, I was working on the next stand-alone mystery/suspense/thriller named Woman In Shadow, which finds us out at the primitive resort of Mule Shoe ranch, Idaho, next to Yellowstone National Park. Darby Graham is a forensic linguist trying to enjoy a vacation . . . but all she’s finding is bodies."
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?
"Below are photos of my writing process—loads of help from the bull terrier, Mazie, and the two Pyrenees, Elfie and Elsa.  I have a total of five dogs—four of them are Great Pyrenees."
Elfie as a puppy in 2016Elsa (lap dog extraordinaire) and Elfie in 2019

Wow! They are gorgeous :-)  And Elfie has grown a little bit!
Thank you for sharing them with us.

We hope you had a great release day for Relative Silent and hope that you are having a great tour!

Revenge is a caustic companion

Relative Silence
Available NOW!

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CMash said...

I really enjoy getting to know an author behind the book.

Stepping Out of the Page said...

Great insight to what sounds like a fab book and author. Thank you for sharing!

Steph @ Stepping Out Of The Page

Dora williams said...

pretty picture and realistic. Get beta readers for your book using usbookreviews dot com Beta readers help with editing, plot arcs and lend fresh eyes to the book.