Hi Book lovers, welcome to another author spotlight! This week I was able to chat with Hanleigh Bradley about her upcoming book. Here is what she said:
When did you first discover you wanted to be a writer and why writing?
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always loved books. I found it incredible that someone else’s words could make my imagination run wild. I wanted that for my own words. I would write short stories, the occasional bit of Harry Potter fanfiction and stuff like that as a teenager and I found I could get lost in those words for ages.
Tell us about your book and why you wrote it?
Inescapable Fate is the first book in my new series and it all centers around Georgia Kentley. She’s a police officer – Detective Sergeant – and she’s just broken up with her long term boyfriend over Christmas. Totally awkward. When she returns to work she gets into a lot of trouble, much to the irritation of her new boss, DCI Walker Trent.
Why did I write this book? Not really sure. I just had an idea and went with it. I like to believe that with every book I write, I become a better author and I think this might be my best book yet.
You mentioned this is the first book in a series. Can you tell us more about the series?
The series is going to follow Georgia and Walker as they get to know each other and face all sorts of danger. There are going to be three books; Inescapable Fate, Inexplicable Fate and Irreversible Fate. All my books are linked so anyone who has read my other books will recognize the occasional character that is going to pop up in this series.
What message or lasting thought do you hope your readers will take away from your book?
That sometimes it’s okay to be rescued. Georgia has experienced some pretty nasty stuff in her life and is seriously self-reliant. Somewhere in all this she’s going to have to learn that she can’t always save herself. I just hope she realizes before its too late.
What author and/or what book has had the greatest impact on your life?
Gosh. There are a few authors that I love. Austen – I love Persuasion. JK Rowling. Elizabeth Gaskel. Deborah Bladon. I’m not sure I can say just one. Perhaps Austen. It’s not just about what she wrote, but more than that. It’s the fact she wrote in a time where women authors weren’t really a thing. The women authors of her generation are like writing superstars in my mind.
Can you offer any advice for beginning writers or those trying to get published?
Write a plan, do your research and then write a marketing plan. Writing is the fun bit. Marketing is the important bit. Promote your book like crazy. Get as many ARC readers as you possibly can. But whatever you do stick to your plan (unless to improve it) and don’t rush.
Beside your book, are there any other books you would recommend reading this spring?
Meg Anne’s The Chosen Series is insanely good and I also love Rae B. Lake’s 7 Kingdoms Series.
Do you have any strange antics you do while you write?
Not so much. I listen to music – but it can’t have lyrics. I also watch the news – on mute.
Worst bloody Christmas of my life! In all my life I never thought I’d be so grateful to get back to work on the 27th of December. We’d been sat there at the dinner table enjoying what should have been a fantastic dinner with the people we loved, and he had to go and ruin it all. His mum had asked a simple question, one my mother was itching to ask too. A question I had hoped they’d leave off for at least another six months but when I heard it, I thought we’d behave like grown-ups and answer it reasonably. What I didn’t expect was for him to have said what he did. I was just as shocked as everyone else at the table, at a complete loss for how to respond.
“So, when will you be getting married then?” His mum had asked in a teasing tone as she elbowed him gently.
I’d laughed slightly and gone to answer the question myself. We’ve not thought about it, was on the tip of my tongue. It was the truth after all. Even if we’d been together since high school, we’d never once considered getting married. There were so many things to discuss before we could agree to spending the rest of our lives together, like if we wanted kids and how many. We’d never once discussed the future, and part of me believed it was because we both knew that we were just passing time until something or someone better came along. It wasn’t that I didn’t love him, I did. I loved him more than almost anyone else, but it wasn’t the way I imagined being in love. Something was missing and over the years I’d convinced myself that that was okay, that eventually, we might find that missing component. Darren had apparently disagreed though because this Christmas he dumped me.
“We won’t be getting married,” Darren told me and our families in tandem.
His eyes were glued to the table in front of him as he continued, “actually I’ve decided we need to break up.” I wasn’t upset at the prospect of breaking up, not really. It had felt inevitable. I was downright pissed that he’d taken it upon himself to make the decision, not including me at all. What was worse was that he’d decided to tell our parents without my consent and on fucking Christmas Day of all days.
“What do you mean?” My father had jumped to his feet, prepared perhaps to defend his little girl.
“We’ve grown apart and there’s no point in continuing this farce.” His tone was cold and unfeeling. It left my heart like ice. He could have at least shown me some kindness, after all, we were friends before we started dating. We’d been dating for five years; ever since our last year at secondary school and before that, we’d been friends for over ten years.
“Why are you doing this now?” My father was furious and I couldn’t really blame him. I wasn’t exactly happy myself.
In a much quieter voice than my father’s, I asked, “why didn’t you discuss this with me before bringing it to our families?”
For the first time since his mother brought up marriage, he looked at me, “I didn’t think you’d let me go.”
“Let you go? I’m not holding you hostage,” the pitch of my voice increasing as I spoke.
“I… I didn’t mean it like that.”
“Then what did you mean?” I asked sharply.
My mother dropped her hand to my shoulder and suggested that everyone leave us to discuss the situation, but just as everyone got up from the table and began to make their way through to the living room, Darren abruptly told them it wasn’t necessary and that he was leaving.
“It’s not as simple as that,” I told him as he gathered his things together, “what about the flat?”
“You can keep it. I don’t want it.”
“What?” I was astounded by his complete lack of feeling. “Where will you stay?”
“I’ll find somewhere.”
“What about your belongings?”
“I’ll ask mum and dad to come and collect them in the New Year.”
“Why didn’t you talk to me about this?” I tried to touch his arm, but he flinched away from me as if burnt.
“There was never a right time.”
“There’s no such thing as the right time… As a friend, as your best friend, as someone you’ve known almost your whole life, I deserved to be told properly.”
“I can’t give you what you want.”
“I don’t know what you think I want.”
“I never asked for that.”
“You didn’t need to.” With those words, he was out the door and I was left to deal with the aftermath. I had to apologize to our families for destroying Christmas, listen to his parents’ apologies, bear through all the absolute crap excuses that our siblings tried to make for him, and attempt to sooth my father’s anger. Worst Christmas of my life and it was all thanks to Darren Jacks. Thank fuck for being back at work is all I can say.
Series: Fate Series
Where to Buy:
When Georgia Kentley breaks up with her long-term boyfriend Darren over Christmas, she really can’t wait to return to work on the 27th of December.
The excitement dies when she meets her new boss, Walker Trent. DCI Trent is a misogynistic pain in the arse. Being a young police officer, Georgia has met her fair share of men who don’t understand that she can hold her own. Every single time she has proven them wrong.
Will she be able to prove to Walker Trent just how capable she is or will she get herself into a heap of trouble, danger and chaos? And when chaos ensues who will be there to save her?
Hanleigh is a British author. She was born in Scotland but has lived near enough her whole life in the South of England. Hanleigh loves books more than nearly anything in the world; whether it’s reading them or writing them, Hanleigh just can’t get enough. She relishes in the way authors can create whole worlds with the words they put in their books. She wishes that being an author really was magic, just like in Once upon A Time. Hanleigh first fell in love with literature as a small child reading Dr Zeus. She then fell in love with romance as a genre when she first read Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. She checked every new five-pound note she got her hands on for Austen’s face but didn’t find her £50,000 five-pound note. Shame. Hanleigh is about as English as it’s possible to be, which is highly ironic as she isn’t English at all. She sometimes wishes she could live inside the world that she can create inside her mind, but since that isn’t possible she puts pen to paper and shares that world with this world instead.
What do you think? As always, comment below your thoughts and if this might be a book that interests you. Until then, Happy Reading 🙂