Happy Publication To Me (Again)!
Eek … So I have yet another novel out TODAY and it’s called The Good Mother, published by Joffe Books.
If you’re thinking ‘it’s only 5 minutes since your last book came out!’ you’d be absolutely correct.
Basically, I wrote so much during Lockdowns 1-3 I have created a bit of a bottleneck of projects, oops. (This isn’t even the only book of mine coming out this month … watch this space!).
Here’s my inspiration for the book, plus more info about it. Enjoy!
The Good Mother asks what you would do if your child was a serial killer … would you help cover it up? Report them to the police? Turn a blind eye and go into denial?
Whatever you think, you probably won’t do what my protagonist Natasha does when she discovers her son Jack is a serial killer … Her actions will shock you!
2) Natasha is an unreliable narrator
If you’ve read my books before, or any of my writing articles online, then you’ll know I LOVE an antiheroine. Natasha is definitely that, but she’s also an unreliable narrator – this describes a protagonist whose credibility is compromised somehow. But how??
3) There’s a filmic connection in The Good Mother
The book takes place in Camden, London – an area I know VERY well – plus Natasha’s workplace has a connection to the film world. I had a lot of fun researching this aspect!
4) The Good Mother is inspired by a lifetime’s interest in true crime
Like many people in the Netflix docudrama era, I am obsessed with true crime … but I’ve been interested in serial killers since I was very young. I loved to go into bargain basement bookstores and buy A-Zs of serial killers. One other character is of course the obligatory true crime podcaster who gets in over his head!
I loved serial killer books so much my high school English teacher BANNED me from doing any more book reports on serial killers … so I did one on MISERY by Stephen King instead. Oh dear 😉
6) It’s NOT A true story (I hope)
If you follow my writing blog Bang2write, you’ll know I believe very much in authenticity. When I told my adult son I was writing a book about a young mum whose son grows up to be a serial killer, he said: ‘Oh, so you’re writing your autobiography then??’ VERY DROLL!!! (Well, at least I hope he was joking – yiiikes).
7) The Good Mother asks: nature or nurture?
Because I was a teenage parent, I’ve been a parent for over half my life now. I’ve had three children with very large age gaps between them, meaning I had 3 kids in 3 decades: the 90s, 00s and 10s. I’ve seen a HUUUUUUGE change in this time in how parenting is perceived, especially with reference to the ‘nature/nurture’ debate.
In addition, because I have mental health issues, my psychiatrist tells me there’s been a radical overhaul post the year 2000 in how psychology a) studied b) treated and c) perceived by the general public. I wanted to explore all of this in The Good Mother.
8) I’m obsessed with the biology of serial killers …
Whilst scientists don’t have any evidence for a ‘psychopathy gene’, they do concede it tends to run in families.
There’s also been some scientific studies that suggest psychopaths’ brain make-up is different. These studies show psychopaths have reduced connections between the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), the part of the brain responsible for sentiments such as empathy and guilt, as well as the amygdala, which mediates fear and anxiety.
Whilst obviously not every abused child becomes a serial killer, the link between domestic abuse and psychopathy has been studied in-depth. In fact, a shocking number of infamous serial killers suffered severe head trauma in childhood, plus many were forced into violent acts themselves in the home by parents or care-givers.
What’s more, many serial killers were isolated from their peers by their home situations, either on purpose by the care-giver or via stigma and shame by classmates, or both.
10) There’s a REAL-LIFE serial killer featured in The Good Mother
By the way, a REAL and infamous British serial killer makes an appearance in the story. I’ll leave you to guess who that could be … or you could just read the book!!!
Buy The Good Mother NOW
The Good Mother is published by Joffe Books and is out on eBook today! GRAB IT HERE and check out the trailer, below.