Interview | Dale Phillips author of A Memory of Grief

An interview with Dale Phillips author of A Memory of Grief.

I really enjoyed A Memory of Grief by Dale Phillips which I finished reading a few days ago. I was delighted when Dale agreed to do an interview for Indie Bookworm and am looking forward to reading some of his other books in the future.

Why did you write A Memory of Grief?

This story had to get out- a flawed protagonist, who struggles to be a better person, and who changes while investigating the death of a friend. A man who hates guns, but tangles with people who use them. A moral man with a shady past and a load of grief and guilt and rage that constantly threatens to make him buckle. And a great way to showcase the Maine locale, a different kind of setting for a mystery.

What kind of reader would enjoy A Memory of Grief?

Anyone who likes good amateur sleuth mysteries, especially fans of Robert B. Parker's Spenser, and John D. MacDonald's Travis McGee. But there are layers of deeper meaning throughout which reward the careful reader- I call it the thinking person's action mystery.

How did you develop your characters?

Slowly, bit by bit. Character is revealed by dialogue and action, so sometimes the characters tell me what they're going to do, and just take over. That's the fun part. Sometimes, whole characters will jump into the story, like Cassie Alexander in the sequel book, A Fall From Grace. She surprised me by showing up in the third draft, and took over the book!

How did you decide to publish A Memory of Grief?

I'd spent a great deal of time doing the whole submissions route to the New York publishing world. Even had an agent, who agreed the book was good, and sellable. And time dragged on, with no forward motion.
Then the world of publishing changed. After an immense amount of research, it seemed that there were other routes. So I was about to self-publish, and I was approached by Briona Glen, a tiny startup publisher, who asked if I'd go with them as their debut novel, to launch the company. So I agreed.

Are you working on any new writing at the moment?

Yes, when I heard about the review of A Memory of Grief here at Indie Bookworm, I was busy writing Book 3 of the series, A Shadow on the Wall. As soon as that's released, I need to finish Wendigo, my first horror novel, which will be out in the Spring.

For more details about Dale's books visit his website

Review | The Not So Secret Emails of Coco Pinchard | Robert Bryndza

I write this blog to tell any other interested readers about some of the fantastic indie published ebooks I've tried myself and enjoyed reading. There are 624,407 fiction titles available in the Kindle Store and sometimes it feels like you're overwhelmed with choice. So if you're on the same wave length as someone else and can get a recommendation of a good book then that seems to me to be a good thing.

I got onto The Not So Secret Emails of Coco Pinchard when I was communicating with A.L. Cooper, author of Twisted Knickers about her recent interview for Indie Bookworm: she recommended the novel to me. Having already enjoyed reading Twisted Knickers ( see earlier post ), I figured I would probably enjoy her recommendation too.

And this proved to be the case. What a great light-hearted, fun, entertaining novel this is. Coco Pinchard is a youngish 40 something, newly separated from her husband and starting to get back into dating. The story follows the ups and downs of her family, professional and love lives and at times it is hilarious. The people Coco knows are a real mixed bunch. Her immediate family, with the possible exception of her son, are gruesome but her friends are great. The emerging love interest is a bit too handsome but he has some serious flaws as well. Good characterisation and a lively plot makes this highly readable comedic romance fiction.

What makes it a bit different, as far as my reading experience is concerned anyway, is that it's all written in e-mails. As far as I can re-call the only other novel I've read that incorporated a substantial email element was Fifty Shades of Grey (see earlier post) and I found them to be ponderous and I skim read most of them. In this novel the email format works very well. The emails are all from Coco on her new i-phone but they are skilfully managed to ensure that they don't become predictable or tedious. Through her emails we get the details of Coco's life and come to know her family and friends. Occasionally the emails are probably longer than might get sent in real life but you're so carried away by the story-line that it doesn't matter.

The blurb for the book draws a parallel with Bridget Jones' Diary and I don't think that in this case that's an exaggerated claim. A thoroughly enjoyable read and a great recommendation: thanks very much A.L.C.