RDSU’s First Guest – Michelle Somers!
For the original post, please visit Romantic Suspense Down Under
Our very first guest on RSDU is the lovely Michelle Somers whose serialised romantic suspense novel Lethal in Love is taking the internet by storm! Take it away Michelle!
Why did I team up a detective and a reporter in Lethal in Love?
The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph —Thomas Paine
Just nine words and Thomas Paine nailed not only the answer to my question but also what makes a great page-turning, nail-biting romantic suspense. Conflict and tension.
Pit reporter against detective and you’ve got it. Writing these two characters onto the same page just has to be interesting reading.
Because before we delve any further than skin-deep, we have two opposites with two very different goals.
In Lethal in Love, Seth Friedin is a reporter hunting the Night Terror for personal gain – a story that’s his ticket into hard-nosed reporting. He believes in freedom of speech – and the press – and he’ll do pretty much anything to get the info he needs. That includes sweet-talking a sassy homicide detective, even stealing a few hot kisses, and more. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that he’s attracted like crazy to her.
He sees nothing wrong with taking these liberties. There is, however, a line he won’t cross. Others in his profession are not so ethical.
Hence the reason for Jayda Thomasz’s thoughts around reporters, based on hard-won experience:
They were almost as bad as the madmen who performed the murders. Irrational? Perhaps. But not unfounded. Freedom of the press was all well and good, but serial killers sought recognition and it rankled that they got it so readily, and sometimes with an almost-reverence just shy of praise.
And that brings us to my straight-laced, strong-willed homicide detective.
Jayda is determined to make the streets of her city safe again. A little media goes a long way to warning women at risk to take care, but she doesn’t need every detail of her case leaked to the public. There are facets of the Night Terror’s MO that must remain under wraps to maintain the integrity of the investigation.
With high profile killers come copycats. If the media revealed every detail, how would police distinguish the original from the copy?
There’s a prime example of this in Lethal in Love.
When key details of the case are leaked, a copycat crawls out of the woodwork. Valuable police time is wasted while the real serial killer continues with his sick agenda unhindered.
I’m sure this occurrence isn’t as uncommon as we think.
And then there are the whistle-blowers. A can of worms I won’t even begin to open.
It’s a delicate balance between two opposing contingents. One who upholds our rights to freedom of information while the other requires secrecy in order to protect ongoing investigations and the people involved. A reporter may believe it’s their job to keep the police honest. The police are there to solve cases and keep us safe.
Their relationship is one of co-dependence – there are times the police need the media and, of course, there are times the media need the police.
A tenuous – and tense – liaison, at best.
And when those two countering forces cosy up, all close and personal? Oh, the challenge! How to maintain a professional distance when the emotional boundaries fall away and the clothes come off.
Conflict and tension by the bucket.
Conditions that make for interesting writing. And reading.
I hope you get as much joy out of reading Lethal in Love as I had writing it!
And if you decide you want more, I’ve a prequel to Lethal in Love called The Candy Cane Killer due for release on 1st December 2015. It’s a great read for those who love Christmas themed stories. And it’s free!
The Candy Cane Killer isn’t up for pre-order, but details can be found on Random House’s website here.
I’d love to hear from you. What two characters would you like to see come head-to-head in a story? Have you read any books lately that showed great tension between contrasting careers? What were they? What made them so compelling?
Do you have something more to add to the comments I’ve made above?
Or perhaps you just want to say ‘hi’.
I have two complete sets of Lethal in Love up for grabs via NetGalley. All you need to do is leave a comment below and you’ll go into a draw to win! I’ll be drawing on Wednesday 25th November, so make sure you comment before then!
And if you’re interested in what I’m planning next, sign up for my newsletter at www.michelle-somers.com or follow me on any one, or all, of these sites:
Lethal in Love is a serialised romantic suspense published in six episodes with Penguin Random House. Episode 1 is currently free across all platforms.