A Fabulous Tale of The Macabre
It's just over two weeks since The Soprano was launched and so far there are 26 reviews on amazon UK and 9 in the US. Why am I telling you this? Well, to be honest I was a little nervous about how this stand-alone supernatural thriller would be recieved - mainly because it was a departure from the popular but very dark Father of Lies trilogy and frankly, most readers wanted more in that vein. I took a risk, in other words. However, so far The Soprano has been enjoyed immensely Phew! Here are just a few quotes from what readers are saying...and after that I'll chip in with some of the reasons I wrote the story. I'll also tell you what I'm starting next and why I am so excited about it!
What Readers Are Saying About The Soprano - A Haunting Supernatural Thriller!
'Full of intrigue and deep-seated intensity...'
'Really enjoyable and another fabulous book (In My Opinion) from the fast becoming Mistress of the Occult!'
'What a great read! A slow burner with a gradual increase in tension....eerily atmospheric...had me gripped to the very last page.'
'A fantastic feeling of moodiness and unease....if you enjoy books about witchcraft and superstition with a hint of creepiness, this is for you!'
'I love Sarah's books - they just get better and better...'
'In atmosphere I was reminded of Susan Hill's The Woman in Black and the slow burn and creeping terror of the master, M R James...'
'A dark, spell-binding read and a cold, biting atmosphere that I could almost feel through my Kindle screen.'
'Ms England is fast becoming one of my favourite authors.'
'A slow moving, foreboding and unnerving tale with a depth and realism that left me a little uncomfortable reading alone at night.'
'As someone who devours stories of this kind, it's up there with the best - and I am including the likes of Edgar Allen Poe in that!'
The story behind the story.... Well, actually Grace Holland was inspired by a real person - a church singer who was also a distant cousin of my mother's. The tale always intrigued me. My mother would tell it to my brother and I during the long car journeys across the Pennines to see my grandparents in North Staffordshire. Both sides of the family are from a village called Biddulph Moor and we'd make that trip in all weathers every two weeks without fail. Sometimes we'd be the last car through Buxton before the road became impassable with snow. Some of the people we'd visit would live in most peculiar ways and have really stuck in my memory, I can tell you! More recently, my dad added stories of what life was like in the post-war years, what they listened to on the radio, how insular it was, and also filled me in on many a colourful character! None of it wasted, of course, and all seeding in my dark and fertile imagination.
Then once I started writing this, it wasn't long before a bit of witchcraft found its way in; and at some point I veered off onto the path of telluric earth energy... not sure how that happened....after which the rest of the story was a real suprise and I can honestly say I had no idea how it would come together at the end. I just had to trust in the mysterious process. So far, it's the hardest piece of writing I have ever done, not least because I wanted to paint the beauty of the landscape with words...my heart and soul went into it. Now, I say the hardest....
NEXT: I'm just starting the research now for Book 5. This will be an off-shoot from the Father of Lies trilogy in that it will be disturbing and frightening....oh, and based in the dark, dark dell of Woodsend again. I have the title. I have the outline in my head, and I have the theme....so until I'm closer with further news I'll just add that I am hoping for a relatively quick turnaround on this one...ie early in the new year...so no rest for wicked people, as they say! Back to work...
One final thing - THANK YOU to every single person who wrote a nice review for The Soprano and also for the Father of Lies books. It is hugely appreciated. Marketing a book is extremely hard when you really need and want to be almost continuously writing, so reviews help in more ways you could imagine - they help the books be noticed and chosen and read! So THANK YOU!