The lovely cover was designed by Charlotte Volnek. I love the font and the image of Edinburgh Castle in the foreground, and the hero is almost exactly as I imagined him :)
Here is the blurb:
“Fair is foul, and foul is fair…”
When Lizzie Smith begins rehearsals for Macbeth with her theatre group in Edinburgh, she’s convinced the witches’ spells are the cause of a run of terrible luck. Lizzie’s boyfriend, Léon – a bodyguard – is mysteriously turned down for every job he applies for, until he’s finally offered the job of guarding “The Scottish Diamond,” a fabulous jewel from the country of Montverrier.
But the diamond’s previous guard has disappeared in mysterious circumstances. The people of Montverrier are known for double-dealing and skulduggery, and the Scottish Diamond has a history of intrigue and bloody murder. Lizzie is plagued by nightmares in which Macbeth’s witches are warning her of danger.
Then Lizzie discovers she’s being followed through the streets of Edinburgh, and it seems her worst fears are about to be realised…
I had the greatest fun writing this novella. There is a LOT of intrigue, deception, and trickery, and I had to very work hard to lay the clues in such a way that the resolution would be a complete surprise for the reader. After writing this story, I have the greatest respect for authors such as Agatha Christie, who wrote mystery after mystery, yet her novels were always so finely crafted you couldn’t guess what was coming until the threads were all drawn together right in the final chapter.
I hope I’ve managed to do the same with this romantic suspense. I do love some gothic skulduggery, and the superstitions surrounding Macbeth all add to the element of mystery. A lot of actors hate performing this play, as they’re convinced it’s shrouded in spells and bad luck. And actors NEVER say “Macbeth,” but always refer to it as “the Scottish play.” If an actor says “Macbeth” during rehearsals, he has to go outside the room, shut the door, turn round three times and then knock on the door to be let back in – otherwise, something really, really terrible will happen.
Léon and Lizzie – the hero and heroine of The Scottish Diamond – first met in my novella Palace of Deception. You can read The Scottish Diamond as a standalone story, but you might like to find out how these two met – and here’s the other exciting news of the day, and where my free novella comes in.
One of my goals for this year was to start a newsletter – somewhere I can talk more informally, post photos of places I’ve visited in England and Europe, talk about books I’ve read and loved, and all things writing-related. To celebrate release of The Scottish Diamond, I’m offering new subscribers a FREE copy of Palace of Deception. All you have to do is sign up here and a copy of Palace of Deception will be emailed to you, just like that. It’s like magic!
(And don’t worry if you’ve already read Palace of Deception. Please just click to reply to your “Welcome” email and let me know, and I’ll send you a different story from my collection!)
So if you’d like a suspenseful read to take you away from the winter chill, please do sign up for my newsletter – it will be lovely to have you on my list!
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I hope you enjoyed my introduction to The Scottish Diamond. Do you enjoy mysteries and romantic suspense? What do you think to my cover? And do you have any superstitions or rituals you just have to perform?
If you have any questions or comments at all, I’d love to hear from you!