My guest author this week is Valerie Keogh who is sharing a scene from her gripping psychological thriller, Secrets Between Us. Take a look at the exciting cover and blurb.
How safe are your secrets?
One letter a week for fifteen years. Identical white envelopes brimming with my sister’s darkest secrets. All the intimate details of a life as different to mine as could possibly be.
I read each letter slowly: Ellie’s friends and enemies, her career in the city and dreams of a family, the terrible secret she’s hiding from her husband, the devastating lies she’s telling herself.
So I still feel close to Ellie. Even though we haven’t seen each other her since we were children; since our parents died.
But now I need help, and I know Ellie won’t fail me. My twin sister will take me in and we will never speak of why, at the end of every letter, she always writes
Don’t forget to burn this letter.
Here’s a scene from the book.
She sipped her tea pensively and then put the mug down, keeping her hands around it. ‘She got so much more of everything but when I looked at her, I saw myself and I didn’t understand.’ Her eyes lost focus for a moment, she gave a quick shake of her head and continued. ‘There wasn’t a huge difference between us then, she was slower, more forgetful but that was all really. I remember thinking that people must see something special in her to love her so much more than me. When we were separated, people thought I’d be upset.’ She met his gaze without faltering. ‘I wasn’t. Not in the slightest. For once, I was just me, Ellie.’ She played with the mug in front of her, looking into it as if the answer to her dilemma was written there. She gave a short laugh. ‘When we agreed to have her here, it never entered my head that we would still look so alike. And then you came home,’ she looked at him accusingly, ‘and you couldn’t tell us apart.’
Will reached a hand out, but she moved away.
‘And now,’ Ellie went on, ‘I see myself in her every day, but softer—’ She held her hand up when Will tried to interrupt. ‘No, let me finish, she is a softer version of me, why wouldn’t she be, for pity’s sake? She’s never had to worry about exam results, interviews, guys like Jeff Harper just waiting in the wings to kick you when you’re down.’ She gulped, the sound loud in the silence.
‘Harper isn’t going to steal your job,’ Will said, grasping the only part of her explanation she assumed he really understood. There was silence for a few minutes. ‘I think you’re just overwrought,’ he said. ‘A lot has happened in the last few weeks. I know you don’t want to discuss it, but what the consultant said must have hit you hard.’
Her fingers tightened on the handle of the mug. If it broke and cut her, she doubted if she’d feel it. ‘Overwrought,’ she said, ‘how very Victorian. Next you’ll be asking me if I need smelling salts.’
‘Sarcasm isn’t helping, Ellie.’
She gulped again before putting what she felt into words she knew he would understand. ‘What the consultant said? Yes, don’t you realise, Will? Tia is literally everything I’m not; she can have children. And I can’t bear it any longer.’
Will shook his head. ‘It’s not her fault, Ellie,’ he said softly.
No, it wasn’t. And nor was Tia’s vulnerability Ellie’s fault. Two different accidents of birth. They’d both missed out.
Valerie Keogh is a qualified nurse with a BA in English and an MA in American Literature. She qualified as a nurse but now writes full-time. She has written two different series.
The Hudson and Connolly series is based in Falmouth, UK. Nicola Connolly is a serial killer. When circumstances lead her to help the police it is the beginning of an unlikely relationship. There are currently four novels in the Hudson and Connolly series.
Her other series, The Garda West series is set in Dublin, Ireland, where Garda Sergeant Mike West battles a series of crimes. There are currently four novels in this series.
Ms Keogh has also written a stand-alone novel, Exit Five from Charing Cross, a story of ambition, greed and thwarted love.
In 2018, Ms Keogh signed a two-book contract with the publisher, Bookouture. Her first novel for them, a psychological thriller, Secrets Between Us, was published on November 14th 2018 and the second, The Housewife, was published on Feb 27th 2019.
Thanks for dropping by to talk to us about your novel, Valerie. Wishing you lots of sales.
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