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Barbara Copperthwaite

CRIME AUTHOR

Month

September 2015

Bestseller!

Instant bestseller Flowers For The Dead, by Barbara Copperthwaite
Flowers for the Dead was an instant chart topper

It’s been a whirlwind of a week! Last time I wrote, the Sunday Mirror had just given FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD a glowing review and made it their Choice of the week.

The next day FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD was published…and…it became an instant bestseller!

And no one can claim my book isn’t consistent because it was Number 20 on all three Amazon lists it appeared on: Psychological Thriller, Psychological Fiction, and Crime, Thriller & Mystery Series.

It was also Number 3 on Amazon’s Hot New Releases chart.

Since then, it’s been an exhilarating and exhausting whirl of promotional chats on blogs, and doing a spot of journalism work. All this while, of course, obsessively watching sales!

It was thrilling enough that my new book had became a chart topper on it’s very first day of release, and is still sitting pretty on the bestsellers lists today. But then something else incredible happened… Invisible re-entered the charts too, once again dominating the Kindle Murder list.

I was so pleased, and so amazed, that I had to keep repeating it to myself in an attempt to make this surreal moment real. “Okay, its really happening, both your books are bestsellers at the same time. Deep breaths, Barbara, deep breaths.”

Thanks so much to anyone who has bought my book so far. I’m so grateful for your support.

Flowers For The Dead, bestseller by Barbara Copperthwaite
Flowers For The Dead went straight in at Number 20 on three Amazon best sellers categories
Bestseller Invisible, by Barbara Copperthwaite
It may be 18 months old, but Invisible is still a bestseller!

Hot off the press!

So there it was. One of the biggest Sunday newspapers in the entire country. And they were reviewing my book. What would they say?

It was the last thing I thought about last night when I went to bed. It was the first thing that entered my head this morning, as I opened gritty eyes at 6am, too excited and nervous to sleep any longer. What would they say?

Time seemed to drag by. I couldn’t buy the paper from anywhere until 10am, as it’s a Sunday. To pass time, I tried to read, but my eyes were drifting over the words, my brain refusing to take in a single sentence. I tried to work, but I just stared at the screen. I tried watching telly, but I’d no idea what was going on. In the end, I did the washing up, all the time thinking one thing: What would they say?

Finally, I nipped down to my local newsagent.

‘You’ve picked up two copies,’ the woman behind the till told me.

‘Oh, yes, well, the thing is…’ I blushed, suddenly feeling very hot. ‘My book’s being reviewed in the paper, and I’m a bit excited.’ When the confession came, it tumbled from my lips, suddenly eager to escape.

She beamed at me, giving me congratulations, and promising to check out my book. I thanked her, briefly feeling a bit like a celebrity. Grinning and hugging the papers to my chest, I scurried home and started rifling through the pages until I reached the book review section…

There it was, in glorious Technicolor. My book – and it had been made the Sunday Mirror’s Choice read of the week! I’d beaten bestselling authors Jane Shemilt and Lee Child. Oh my goodness!!!

By now, I was so excited I could barely see. It took me three goes before I could finally take in the words of the review properly. Little phrases kept jumping out at me.

Chillingly drawn serial killer…will have you looking over your shoulder and under your bed…original, gripping, and writing with a deep psychological impact…

Wow, they said that about my book!

To say I’m floating on cloud nine right now is an understatement. I’m peering down at cloud nine, it is a mere speck in the distance below me, because I feel like I am soaring.

I just hope that all of my readers enjoy FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD as much when it is published tomorrow. Thank you to all who have bought it so far, and to everyone who will buy it in the future. Your support means so much.

The Sunday Mirror reviews Flowers For The Dead, by Barbara Copperthwaite
The Sunday Mirror have made Flowers For The Dead their Choice read of the week

Wishing away the weekend

It’s not often I find myself wishing away the weekend, but that’s just what is happening right now. I’m so excited about Flowers For The Dead being published on Monday! Come on, weekend, get out of the way!

Although I’ll have to do some work, I do have a couple of things to look forward to on Saturday and Sunday that should make the time go faster. I’m going on a wildlife walk today, which will be lovely. And…in a little treat to celebrate the upcoming publication of Flowers For The Dead (sorry, I know I can’t stop going on about it!) my first book, Invisible, is on special offer of $1.53 in the US or 99p in the UK, so be sure to check it out. Hurry, the offer runs out in five days time!

On Sunday I’ll be relaxing and baking a cake – yum! I can’t decide what kind though; do you have any recommendations? Let me know your favourites (come on, who doesn’t want to talk cakes. I’m a massive fan of Lemon Drizzle, personally).

What’s more, the Sunday Mirror will be reviewing Flowers for the Dead, so fingers crossed for a great review. Keep your eyes peeled for it! Have a great weekend, everyone

I know what I'm wishing for!
I know what I’m wishing for!

Critics praise FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD

FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD, by Amazon bestseller Barbara Copperthwaite
FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD, by Amazon bestseller Barbara Copperthwaite

The first independent reviews for FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD are in – and have given the novel a huge thumbs up. The psychological crime thriller has been praised not just for being a page-turner, but also for creating a unique protagonist, and giving a perspective on serial killers that has never been done before.

I couldn’t be more happy with the reception my book has been given so far!

“Flowers For The Dead is the first book I have read by this author and after reading this one it certainly will not be the last!” writes By The Letter Book Reviews, adding: “Adam Bourne is a serial killer like no other that I have read about.

“I could feel through the author’s writing the emotion that Laura was going through of disbelief, shock and, over all, the awful feeling of being scared, then terror. It really gives you an insight into how a victim must feel through being terrorised by a crazed stalker.”

But she also was impressed with the emotional depth of the novel. “I have to say the relationship between Adam and his grandmother is very endearing and I really enjoyed reading of the time they spent together.

“Flowers For The Dead is a very creepy and quite an intense read. Towards the end the story really picks up pace and had me right on the edge of my seat,” she concludes.

To read Sarah’s full review of FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD, visit By The Letter Book Reviews.

Comfy Reading is also a fan of FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD, describing its plot as : “A terrific way to change up the game in a thriller novel.”

“I really enjoyed how the author puts you in the mind of the victim, and the murderer. This, although disturbing, was a really interesting and fresh way to tell a story.”

Visit Comfy Reading to see the full review.

Thank you so much to those reviewers for taking the time to read my novel and post their thoughts. I hope they are the start of many more happy readers to come!

Want to know more? Read an exclusive extract from FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD here.

Review: I LET YOU GO, Clare Mackintosh

I let you go

Read my review of “I Let You Go’ by Clare Mackintosh. “The characters are absorbing, the story emotional, realistic, and chilling…” For more, click here.

A perfect moment

Flowers for the Dead, by Barbara Copperthwaite
Looking at my proof copies was a perfect moment

The box seemed to grow bigger and more ominous as I looked at it. I wanted to open it. With all my heart I did. But something momentarily held me in place….

Sod it. I grabbed the scissors and scored through the tape. Flung open the box, pulled impatiently at the crumpled brown paper lying within, sending it flying across the room.

And then I breathed out, long and slow, as I looked at the treasure held within.

My book. My baby. My second, precious novel. The paperback proof version nestled inside the anonymous cardboard box. A grin flashed across my face, then disappeared as rapidly as lightening as I picked up the book.

No matter how many time I check and double check, and triple check (and let’s be honest, check a whole lot more) the draft version, pressing publish is always a little nerve-wracking. Now I was faced with the physical book, I started checking it for mistakes, a stern parent waiting to catch out their child.

I twisted the book this way and that in my hands. The front cover looked incredible, the high gloss finish showing off the superb artwork done by Paul Humphreys; the texture of the lettering looked just like a weathered tombstone, just as I’d wanted. The spine was satisfyingly thick. Across the back rose petals scattered across it, just like on the front, only from a single bloom, framing the words.

There were no spelling mistakes, no blurry bits, everything was perfect. Inside was the same story.

Without even realising it, my grin had not only returned but grown wider. Is there any prouder moment in an author’s life than seeing their book for the first time? Finishing the first draft is always a wonderful moment, a feeling of real achievement and joy. It is always tempered, though, with the knowledge that there are many things that need to be fixed, whole sections to be re-written, or deleted completely, or added. When the final draft is done, there comes a true sense of pride. But the next step is editing, and I am always keen to get on with it. By the time editing is done, followed by layout and formatting, I feel exhausted and slightly befuddled by having spent so many months staring at the same words again and again.

Looking at my book for the first time in physical form is a perfect pause. A moment of stillness in the flurry of activity that has gone before and will come afterwards, thanks to the publicity drive.

There it is, in my hands: the thing over which I have obsessed and despaired and elated. It’s real. It’s finished. There is nothing more I can do to it.

Now, as I hold FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD in my hand, I smile and enjoy this perfect moment.

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