Books To Watch For In 2015: An Interview With Sara Blaedel

As you know, I am a huge, huge fan of Sara Blaedel and am absolutely delighted to host her on the blog today.

1)    Is it hard to write a series and keep the characters fresh while also remaining true to who they are? (You are succeeding admirably, by the way)

No, it’s actually quite easy. The characters evolve naturally as the series grows. But it’s I also have to think about plots long-term so my characters land where I want them to. I have written the series about Louise Rick and Camilla Lind for ten years now, and sometimes my characters do not behave the way I wanted them to, but basically I am the one who decides…although they can be a little difficult to control. But my stories are fairly tight, so the characters have also had to adapt to the plots I have laid out.

2)    Do you have a favorite character? If so, who?

Well, Louise and I have gotten to know each other pretty well in the ten years we have worked together. And Camilla is the character that is most similar to myself. But I’m probably most in love with some of my minor characters, perhaps because many of them deserve to have their very own stories told.

3)    What was the inspiration for this novel?

Actually it was an article I read in a Danish newspaper that got me started. I often write based on indignation, or something I cannot understand, but really want to understand. It’s not that long ago that we were treating odd characters in our society as indecent. And there are still people whose lives are marked by the horrible conditions we previously subjected people with mental, emotional, and physical challenges and their families to. We can be quite smug sometimes, and in this book I try to say: Hello, look what we did, let’s not degrade other human beings ever again. And since I am a crime writer by heart, and since the subject put all sorts of pictures in my head, the story immediately took shape.

4)  What are you reading now?

I always try to keep up with the new Danish crime writers. My priorities are to keep up with what’s coming next.

5)  What are your five favorite books? You can do authors if that’s easier.

I love Cheryl Strayed’s WILD, it made me want to do an eye-opening hike myself. And Gillian Flynn, Michael Connelly, Karin Slaughter and Jojo Moyes. And I really, really enjoyed Dicker’s THE TRUTH ABOUT THE HARRY QUEBERT AFFAIR.

6)  If you could make one book mandatory, what would it be?

Such a difficult question! I would have to say: all of them. So many books have made a difference in my life, from comic books to serious tomes…I couldn’t choose just one!

7)  What 2015 books are you looking forward to?

THE ARC OF THE SWALLOW by Sissel-Jo Gazan and THE TRUTH ABOUT PRETTY GIRLS by Karin Slaughter.


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