A little while ago I was lucky enough to receive an advanced copy of “Precious Thing” – when I wrote my “Twisty Tales” article (link can be found under “Articles”) I mentioned this one briefly and promised to return to it. So here we are. Precious Thing is a terrific page turner, an engrossing read and a clever little tale.
Colette Mcbeth herself kindly offered to answer a few questions for me and here is what she had to say.
Did you know the outcome from the start or did it evolve as Rachel told her story?
I always knew part of the ending which was supposed to be the final twist but then as I was writing the second draft I began thinking it was all a bit too neat. That’s when I came up with the final outcome.
Was it always going to be written through Rachel’s eyes or did you consider at any point giving Clara her own say?
It’s key to the story that we see everything from Rachel’s perspective. I did toy with giving Clara a few chapters but nothing more than that. I’m glad I didn’t.
Do you have a favourite “peripheral” character from the book?
Robbie the news editor! I should say I have never had a news editor like that, but you do hear stories. He’d have been a nightmare to work for.
Was Precious Thing a lot of fun to write?
The first draft was hard work, it’s definitely not my favourite part of the process. The second and third drafts were where it came to life, you get those moments when you can see it all slotting in to place, or you find yourself doing something mundane like cooking dinner, hanging out the washing and another twist pops up in your head. That is great fun. There’s hardly any violence in Precious Thing but certain scenes were quite emotionally draining to write. You live in the character’s head and in some chapters that was a disturbing place to be.
Have you cast the film in your head? As a reader I always do that – I wondered if writers suffer from that as well
Of course! You’re always trying to visualise your characters so fantasy casting can be a great help. I’d love Andrea Riseborough to play Rachel, I think she’d be brilliant, and we both grew up in the same street in Whitley Bay, directly opposite each other in fact.
Can you tell us anything about your next project?
It’s the story of two women who were both attacked by the same man years apart. Melody survived but feels dead inside, Eve was killed. When her body is found police connect the cases and Melody embarks on a mission to get to know the dead woman. But the more she finds out about her ‘friend’ the more she realises Eve is the only person who can teach her how to live again.
Thank you so much Colette. I shall very much look forward to the next book.
First of all a huge thank you to the publisher for sending me a copy of this book to review.
Rachel and Clara meet at school and form an unshakeable bond. Best friends, they know everything there is to know about each other…or do they? Years later Rachel is a successful tv reporter with a loving boyfriend and a great life, while Clara has not had such a happy time of it. When Clara goes missing Rachel begins to question everything she thought she knew about her best friend…..
I loved this very much. The story is told by Rachel in the form of a letter, or diary if you like, to Clara and has a taut, expressive narrative that is not only terrifically compelling but is also quite dark in its tone – as Rachel hovers between obsessive worry about where Clara might be and slow forming terror as she comes to realise the horrific possibilities, you are drawn right into that place and time with her. Slowly revealing the course of their friendship from the day Rachel sat down next to Clara in the classroom and leading us up to present day you will never be quite sure what the outcome might be.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I DO love a clever book. This was clever and then some. Sadly I can’t say very much because its difficult to tell you WHY it was so clever without giving anything away – And I am certainly not going to do that so you will just have to trust me fellow readers, it IS extremely clever. Intelligently written, almost poetic prose in places which changes depending on Rachel’s mood – I love the slight bitchiness that sometimes enters her “voice” – if you love a good twisty tale that you really can get your teeth into then this one is certainly for you.
Brilliantly done from Ms Mcbeth I can’t wait to find out what she has in store for us in the future.
You can follow Colette McBeth on Twitter here https://twitter.com/colettemcbeth
If you would like to read the book clickety click here http://www.amazon.co.uk/Precious-Thing-ebook/dp/B00C74SKSG/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1375864783&sr=1-1&keywords=precious+thing
Happy Reading Folks!