Mention three fun facts that your fans maybe don’t know about you
I have published 45 books so far in many genres- contemporary, historical, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, supernatural.
When I was giving a talk about my book “Lisa”, the book about Denmark during WW2, someone gave me a book about this village, Le Chambon, in France. Once I read about it I knew I needed to write the story of the brave people who risked their lives to do what was right. It is important that they stood up and refused to go along with the murder and lawlessness of Vichy France and the Nazi regime. Today, too, people need to stand up to discrimination against others that we see happening all over the world.
Each book has a different inspiration. Sometimes it is a book I read. Sometimes it is a movie I see. Sometimes it is a conversation I have. I am inspired to write for two reasons – to entertain and to educate. I hope my readers will love my stories and not want to put them down, but I also hope that my stories will make them stop and think- think about what kind of world we want and what they can do to make it a better world. And that they won’t go along with leaders who are cruel and heartless but will fight for a world where every person is considered equal to one another.
I would never dream of telling a reader how to interpret a book. That’s the beauty of literature. Often readers see things in my novels I didn’t even know were there! But in terms of a message, when I write about The Holocaust I don’t write about it as a history lesson. I write about it because I want readers to think about how it could have happened and by making it personal, to think about those 6 million who were murdered not as numbers but as real people who were killed in the most cruel and vicious ways imaginable. And to caution them that dictatorship is only a breath away at any time. Right now, in the United States, it is a real and present danger. The President is going after minorities in an unprecedented and dangerous way and we should all be standing against that in our own countries. (I am Canadian.)
I imagine my characters, rather than identify with them. I try to see them and hear them as I write so that they take on their own identity and even often surprise me!
I am also reading a number of books on The Holocaust for a new book I am working on.