Guest Post – Marnie Riches (The Girl Who Had No Fear and Born Bad)
The 4th George McKenzie novel, The Girl Who had no Fear, released a couple of weeks ago and plunges George into a whole new level of peril. But not content with putting our favourite criminologist through the emotional ringer, Marnie has also been working on a new series which will kick off next year when Born Bad releases.
I caught up with Marnie to chat about her busy year and what we can hope to see in 2017…
It’s been a busy 2016 for me. In addition to writing The Girl Who Had No Fear, I have also penned the first book in my brand new Manchester series, entitled Born Bad. I’m extremely excited about it. Not only am I playing god over a killer cast of new characters, but this is my first foray into print as well as e-book. As digital-first acquisitions by Avon’s imprint, Maze, the George McKenzie series (aka The Girl Who series) is not yet in print, though it has been both award-winning and best-selling. I do think we will see George in print at some point, but not yet, which makes the release of Born Bad on 9th March 2017 a real milestone for my career as a crime writer. I’m hoping it’s going to be, like, EVERYWHERE (as my teenaged daughter would say).
Born Bad is set in my home town – Manchester: the most violent city in the UK. Though I’ve lived in London, Cambridge, Huddersfield and Utrecht, I’ve spent most of my life in Manchester – my formative years until the age of 18, and also the last nine years. I have great civic pride in this melting pot of a city, with its world class music and culture. Anyone born in Manchester has a little bit of grit running through their bloodstream, and of course, a little webbing between the old fingers! It being the most violent city in the UK, of course, means that Manchester is constantly abuzz with criminal activity. What better place therefore to set a series all about the (fictitious) villains that run Manchester’s criminal underworld – a story about north vs south and men vs women? I can reveal that the series has some incredible, surprising anti-heroes, feisty heroines and an entertaining army of quirky, mentally unstable muscle. I’m told readers of Martina Cole and Kimberley Chambers will love it but I think anyone who likes a good yarn about bad guys in a gritty setting will love it too.
I wasn’t in any way ready to take a break from the George McKenzie series, and in fact, I’m contracted to write a fifth book, which will be released in early 2018. While readers still clamour to read George stories, I’m clamouring the write them. There’s always more for George to say and do, and The Girl Who Had No Fear opens the door to a whole new dynamic in George’s extended family. It was my publisher that suggested I might like to write something set in Manchester. I jumped at the chance to have two series running concurrently. What fun to write! And long may the two series run…
Juggling the editing of one novel in a series at the same time as writing another novel in another series was a bit of a challenge logistically, but I got there in the end, thanks to some good time management and long hours. Fortunately, the manuscripts I deliver are, in the main, in pretty clean shape already (Solid graft. Nothing more), so the work wasn’t too extensive. It does require some mental agility to leap from one world and set of characters to another and then back again, however! It’s my pleasure to be kept on my toes in this way.
Thinking about it, writing about Manchester and Amsterdam makes perfect sense. Both are rainy, cold cities, roughly on a par geographically. The Dutch are very forthright. Mancunians are very forthright. Both cities have a big club and drug scene. I guess many readers of the George series will find something to love in the new Manchester series, if only it’s the bad weather and trafficking theme.
The Girl Who Had No Fear is available on this link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Girl-Fear-George-McKenzie-Book-ebook/dp/B01GNSR5M8/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1481494069&sr=1-1&keywords=the+girl+who+had+no+fear
You can read my review here: http://grabthisbook.net/?p=2223