Isobel’s life is falling apart. Her mom just married some guy she met on the internet only three months before, and is moving them to his sprawling, gothic mansion off the coast of nowhere. Goodbye, best friend. Goodbye, social life. Hello, icky new stepfather, crunchy granola town, and unbelievably good-looking, officially off-limits stepbrother.
But on her first night in her new home, Isobel starts to fear that it isn’t only her life that’s unraveling—her sanity might be giving way too. Because either Isobel is losing her mind, just like her artist father did before her, or she’s seeing ghosts. Either way, Isobel’s fast on her way to being the talk of the town for all the wrong reasons.
1 How did you come up with the idea for this book?
I’ve always been interested in ghosts. I know if I ever saw something I’d wonder if I really saw it, or if I was going crazy. I decided I wanted to put a character in that situation. Poor Isobel, since her dad struggled with mental illness she has even more reason to worry that she might be losing it, or her new step dad is trying to make her think she’s crazy. None of these feel like good options for her.
2 What’s been your favorite author moment so far in your career?
How do you pick one? Every time I get an email or letter from a reader it makes my entire week. This past Halloween one of the kids that came to the door asked if he could have my autograph since I was an author. I gave him a huge handful of candy.
3 It’s Oscar speech time! Who are the three people that you would most like to thank for helping you write this book?
Mom and Dad get a call out because they gave me my love of reading. My mom even gave me a copy of Rebecca, which is a great gothic novel with hints of ghosts that no doubt was an inspiration. My editor, Anica Rissi, is all types of awesome. She makes each of my books better. Lastly, I’d have to thank my husband who provides me IT support, makes dinner when I’m writing, and generally can be counted on to cheer me on.
4 Describe a typical writing day
I want to have a typical day, but for some reason my life is too chaotic. I do my best writing in the afternoon, so I tend to spend my mornings doing email, marketing, and cruising random celebrity news sites. After lunch I buckle down and get the writing in. I’ve also been known to talk to myself as I try and sort out what should happen next. This is why it is a good thing I work alone in my office with my dogs. I look less crazy that way.
5 Tell me one strange random fact about this book.
I’m not sure it is that strange in retrospect, but I did a fair bit of research on ghosts while writing the book. As a result, I slept with the lights on for a few nights.