I love a psychological read and am fascinated by what we reveal and conceal as humans so when Caroline England, author of Beneath the Skin, agreed to tell me a bit about her views on secrets I was thrilled to welcome her to Linda’s Book Bag. Beneath the Skin is on my TBR and so many fellow bloggers are telling me how great it is that I can’t wait to read it.
Beneath the Skin was published by Avon Books on 5th October 2017 and is available for purchase here.
Beneath the Skin
Three women. Three secrets.
Antonia is beautiful and happily married. Her life is perfect. So why does she hurt herself when nobody’s watching?
Sophie is witty, smart and married to the best-looking man in town. She likes a drink, but who doesn’t?
Olivia is pretending to be a happy wife and mother. But her secret could tear her family apart.
Their lies start small, they always do. But if they don’t watch out, the consequences will be deadly.
A Guest Post by Caroline England
Everybody has a secret. Yes, you do! A study revealed that the average person keeps thirteen secrets, five of which he or she has never shared with anyone. Go on, count them! They can range from those little things many people do that don’t really feel illegal, such as nicking a five pence plastic bag without paying, or exaggerating expenses at work, to major crimes such as hit and run incidents or even murder. Then there are affairs, betrayals and hidden relationships, with devastating consequences, to easy small lies to cover up mundane events such as covertly looking for another job or concealing the early weeks of a pregnancy. Or perhaps a person’s secret is simple unhappiness. Don’t we all do it sometimes? Put on our bright facade for the Facebook posts and photos to hide the occasional dissatisfaction with our lives?
Then there’s those family secrets which only come out when great Auntie Ethel has too much sherry at Christmas. You know, when you spurt out your bucks fizz in surprise – your Grandad was a bigamist; your dad and mum married when she was five months pregnant with your older sister, your cousin’s on the game…
All my novels have a slow unfurling of secrets, not least my debut, Beneath the Skin. The title says it all! What is underneath the veneer of these apparently happy and successful characters? Antonia has a dark secret, but so do Sophie and Olivia, David and Sami, lies which could blow their lives apart. Then there’s my next book, due out next May. Guess what it’s called? Yup, My Husband’s Lies!
OK, I admit it; I am a bit obsessed with secrets and lies and the human condition. I’m an amateur psychologist, driving my family bonkers with my interpretations of other people’s behaviour, what they say, but don’t mean; what they reveal by their faces but don’t say! Is it only me who is intrigued about what ‘goes on behind closed doors’? Isn’t there something just a little thrilling to discover the couple who always looked so loved up outside the cafe on a Saturday morning are actually getting a divorce? Or that the snob of the avenue was arrested for shoplifting?
I probably have thirteen secrets. I know they’re supposed to burrow into our psych and poison us, but I actually like them. Maybe it was because I was the youngest of five children; perhaps it was having to share a dormitory of 17 other girls when I was eight. You can be by yourself with a secret. It’s something you can do on your own! Hm, perhaps I shouldn’t have said that – now I’m in danger of amateur psychologists starting on me…
(Woo – I’d love to know those secrets Caroline! Now I’m off to count my own…)
About Caroline England
Born Yorkshire lass, Caroline studied Law at the University of Manchester and stayed over the border. Caroline was a divorce and professional indemnity lawyer and instigated her jottings when she deserted the law to bring up her three lovely daughters. In addition to the publication of her short story collection, Watching Horsepats Feed the Roses by ACHUKA books, Caroline has had short stories and poems published in a variety of literary publications and anthologies. She was shortlisted for the Impress Prize 2015, in the Pulp Idol 2016 finals and long listed for the UK Novel Writing Competition 2017.
Her debut novel, Beneath the Skin, was published by Avon HarperCollins on 5 October 2017. Her second novel My Husband’s Lies will be published by Avon HarperCollins on 3 May 2018.