Converted to Red Ribbons Crime
“The bad man is everywhere. Can you see him?” asks Louise Phillips, author of best-selling debut novel Red Ribbons, a psychological crime thriller set in Ireland.
Yes. Yes, I can. Growing up in Belfast during the 1970’s at the height of the Troubles, the bad men were everywhere. Our next door neighbour, a Diplock Court Judge, was a so-called ‘legitimate target’ for the bad men. He died taking three bullets in the head, two in the stomach.
Suffice to say bad people are everywhere and when there’s enough of them in the real world, why would I want to enter the one Phillips has created – a place without shadows where evil resides?
I don’t. I tend to avoid crime novels like the plague and yet from the moment I started reading Red Ribbons I couldn’t put it down. Yes, it’s chilling and gripping, just like it says on the tin, but unlike other crime novels I’ve picked up and quickly dumped, it doesn’t dwell on gory details in order to fill pages and in so doing repulse readers like me.
Instead, it’s intelligent and respects the readers ability to use their own imaginations in places without compromising on suspense that steadily heightens right up until the final word. Told from three points of view – the serial killer’s, the criminal psychologist’s, and the accused woman’s – their individual stories are weaved seamlessly together into a whole that is utterly human, believable, touching and irresistible.
I like that. I like that a hell of a lot. And having finished it last night, along with a box of tissues, what I like even better is that Red Ribbons is the first in a series. Louise Phillips’ second novel, The Doll’s House, will be published in 2013.
For more, visit Louise Phillips at:http://www.louise-phillips.com/
CAREN KENNEDY runs writing.ie's Word Play blog and is the creator of a television series currently in pre-production with Warner Bros TV and co-author of Fake Alibis (BenBella Books, 2009). As well as being a regular contributor to Journal.ie, publishing credits include local, national and international publications. In conjunction with The Inkwell Group, Caren also gives one-to-one mentoring on how to begin writing for television in her online course: http://www.inkwellwriters.ie/workshops/writing-tv-treatments. She is represented in the US by Vamnation Entertainment and TriadaUS Literary Agency.