Thanks for sending me a copy of Crooked Heart, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this poignant story which made me smile and feel sad at the same time. Hope I'm not too late to ask the author some questions.
WARNING SPOILER ALERT - don't read my questions if you haven't finished reading the book would hate to spoil the ending.
1. Do you plan to write any more stories featuring characters from this book? Aileen Gifford and Mattie sounded a right hoot and I'd like to read more about they exploits during the suffragette movement. If you have no plans for a sequel then why didn't you add another chapter to the book telling us what Noel/Vee and Donald/Hilde were up to three/four years after the war ended? Did Vee eventually make it all legal and above board and stop living a lie.
2. Why did you place Noel back in a similar situation to the one he was in at the beginning of the story - living in a house with only an old woman for company and having to withhold the true from the outside world.
3. Why didn't you create more of a rapport between Noel and Mr Clare the bookshop owner? Was the reason because Noel had limited interaction with male role models growing up or because they were from different social classes.
4. Did you have any qualms about having Vee take on the identity of a dead person?
5. Have you had any first hand experience of dementia in your family/friends as I thought this was portrayed very well in the book.
1. Yes, I’m writing a prequel about Mattie, and a sequel about Noel and Vee, set towards the end of the war.
2. This is hard to answer – the book finds its own shape as I write it, and it just seemed the right conclusion to the story…
3. Again, a hard one to answer, but I think it’s because Noel doesn’t make friendships easily; he’s very self-contained.
4. Changing identity during the Blitz was both tempting and relatively easy for those with something to hide, and Vee had a lot to hide…
5. No direct experience, no, but over the years I have met many people who either suffer from dementia, or are carers for those who do…