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I Know You’re There by Sarah Simpson #BlogTour @aria_fiction @sarahsimpson

I Know You’re There by Sarah Simpson Blog Tour

Hello everyone and thank you so much for stopping by! We are so excited and it’s our absolute pleasure to be a part of the blog tour for I Know You’re There by Sarah Simpson and share our individual reviews with you. Thank you so much to Victoria Joss at Aria for inviting us to be a part of this blog tour.

Today we are sharing Brenda and Lindsay’s reviews with you!

The Traveling Sisters ~ Norma, Brenda & Lindsay! xxoo

SARAH SIMPSON – About the author
Sarah Simpson has a first-class honours degree in Psychology and has experienced working at a Brain Rehabilitation Hospital. She has spent time as a family consultant for Warwickshire and Oxfordshire solicitors and gained knowledge of the Family Court System. She now lives in Cornwall with her husband, three children and animals.

Follow Sarah
Twitter handle: @sarahrsimpson
Facebook: @sarahsimpsoncornwall

About the book

Is your house as safe as you think?

Natalie spent most of her childhood feeling afraid. So when she moved into her cosy little flat in St Ives and met her three friendly neighbours, she knew at once it was somewhere she’d feel safe.

Before long, Natalie’s neighbours have become the family she never had. Kind, motherly Morwenna, serious, reliable Nigel, and sweet, anxious Daniel. They collect each other’s mail, water each other’s plants, and share each others lives.

But as Natalie knows all too well, the people who are closest to you can also be the most dangerous. And this house is not as safe as she thinks…

Lindsay’s Review

This story had me on edge from start to finish!

Natalie lives in an apartment in a house shared with three others.   She has good relationships with the other tenants, considering a couple of them close friends.  Having escaped a violent and abusive childhood, Natalie has always lived in fear of facing her past.   She can’t seem to shake the feeling of being watched and having her past catch up with her.  Mysterious notes begin to appear causing everyone to question how well they really know one another.

I applaud the author, Sarah Simpson, for creating such an intense feeling of tension throughout this entire novel.   I truly felt Natalie’s fear and anxiety, feeling as though I was worried about what I would find out on the next page.   This chilling sense of dread built a very strong and palpable atmosphere.  

The characters were intriguing, each carrying a sense of secrecy that had my suspicions jumping all over the place.  The novel changes perspectives between the house tenants, each chapter ending with a small cliffhanger which left me eager to read further.   The pace did waver slightly as there were times I felt the plot dragged a bit, however, my curiosity and interest was piqued throughout.  

Brenda’s Review

I Know You’re There starts off slow as we get to know our main characters who live in different flats in the same building. It seems like a good set up for Natalie and she thinks she has found her people here however not everything is as it appears with her new friends. Each character has their own personal conflicts and secrets and they are slowly revealed as we get to know the characters.

I know You’re There delves into the mental health of the characters and a few conditions are explored here with our characters. Sarah Simpson does a great job here delving into each character and their personalties as we learn each of the characters conflicts and secrets from their past and how that has affected their dynamics here in the story. The characters and dynamics are complex and at times I did become a bit confused with the dynamics.

The pace picks up around the middle of the story and the tension rises as the mystery starts to unfold right to that very satisfying ending that wrapped up so well.

Thank you so much to Victoria Joss at Aria and Sarah Simpson for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book.

Fiction Books Guest Post

Why Do I write Psychological Thrillers?

This is something I am frequently asked. I Know You’re There is my third psychological thriller, it’s a good question and to be honest, not one I ever really ask myself. I honestly, haven’t ever considered writing in a different genre, other than an idea and a will I have for a children’s book, totally at the other end of the spectrum.

Why did I choose this particular genre? Possibly because my mind naturally thinks, feels and ticks in this way and this is also why I have never questioned it. Probably not something I should admit to but my mind naturally errs on the dark, evocative, twisted side, when I am deep in my imagination.  I am not, for the record, a narcissistic psychopath, or anything remotely dark in nature but I do have an intrinsic, enquiring interest in the conditions and traits that provoke such tense states. The good old question, nature or nurture, what is it? that can flip people to show an unflattering side of the personality coin.

I guess, if I think about where my ideas come from it is a combination of people watching, personal and professional experiences. I watch people (again not in a stalker type fashion) and I wonder what is happening behind the sometimes fragile surface, because the psychology of human behaviour is fragile and exposed, and are things really as the surface would have it seem? What conflicts could be happening behind the scenes, we are not privy to? Causing and instigating ever rippling consequences?

​I have always had a deep fascination in the mind and how it can become so iniquitous and then what happens. I love to explore what ensues when people’s emotions are tested, strained, torn, when life throws its stuff at them as it so often can. How come some people will cope, remain relatively unchanged and others will struggle or hit out?Understanding, it’s not always the events in life to determine emotional state but more how people have learned or chosen to react and manage the events. There’s sometimes a human arrogance to assume we know how we would respond to given experiences as really – we have no idea. Because context and perspective are everything, always. It’s these ambiguities I love to write about. 

​What any of us take from any story is always influenced and so determined by our own life experiences, state of mind, learned behaviours and individual biology. I can only hope to leave readers with a certain emotional feeling, in this respect I am unable to influence the effect of the story. For me, this is what makes writing and reading so incredibly special, understanding each and every individual will take something different from each page turn, each chapter.

So, I write within the psychological thriller genre, and I see it more that I write about life and behaviours. Rarely is life plain sailing without evocative moments, without times of sadness, of fear and times of clinging to the edge of the seat. All I hope to do is push this notion, these emotional states to the ambiguous limit and sometimes, twisting them that little bit further, squeezing out the questions – what if? What then?

Book Addict Rambles Q+A

1: can you introduce yourself and your books for everyone please? 

Sarah is relatively late to the writing scene, despite a love of books and writing from when she was very young, it wasn’t until 2016 that she sat down to put pen to paper. Her Greatest Mistake was then some twelve months in creation, followed by some vigorous re-writing. In June 2017, she signed with her current agent Broo Doherty and shortly after was offered a three book publishing contract with Aria, Head of Zeus.

She has written three psychological thrillers. Her Greatest Mistake, a domestic noir look behind closed doors which reached an overall eBook chart position of 16 in the UK. Who I Am, a complex and taut look at friendships and much more and her latest – I KNOW YOU’RE THERE and I know you’ll let me in….

I Know You’re There.

Is your house as safe as you think? 

Natalie spent most of her childhood feeling afraid. So when she moved into her cosy little flat in St Ives and met her three friendly neighbours, she knew at once it was somewhere she’d feel safe. 

Before long, Natalie’s neighbours have become the family she never had. Kind, motherly Morwenna, serious, reliable Nigel, and sweet, anxious Daniel. They collect each other’s mail, water each other’s plants, and share each other’slives. 

But as Natalie knows all too well, the people who are closest to you can also be the most dangerous. And this house is not as safe as she thinks…

Sarah lives in a small coastal town in beautiful Cornwall with her husband, three children, German Shepherd and cat. 

•What inspired you to write this book?

I Know You’re There was inspired by my natural interest for complex psychological conditions and the general vulnerabilities of the workings of the human mind. I loved the idea of four strangers coming together, taking up residence in an old Victorian house, divided into flats. All the characters with their own back stories and emotional baggage, all of them in some way, burying darker times from earlier years. I think it has always interested me – how well do we ever know anyone, to understand what it is driving responses, emotions and thought processes. How easy it is to only see what we want to see based on these conditions. Sometimes the most obvious scenarios are the most difficult to spot. As with all my books, this rides on the understanding none of us truly know how we would react and feel in any given circumstance. So life, professional and personal life experiences have inspired me with a sprinkling of fascination of the often unknown capabilities of the mind.

•Did you base any of the characters on anyone you know personally? 

No, not anyone I personally know. But I would say the characters all derive from an amalgamation of people I may have crossed paths with at some point in time. Certainly, my characters have individual traits I have at some point encountered, be it – personally or professionally. 

•What can we find you doing when you’re not writing? 

I enjoy the simple things in life. A glass of something cold, watching the sunset is good for me. I live in Cornwall, so being outdoors is really important. I am most happy when I’m literally anywhere near or in the sea, whatever the weather. I love walking with my family and Arthur our German Shepherd, particularly exploring new stretches of the coast line. Naturally, I am a people watcher, so I could happily sit at one of my favourite spots, with a mug of coffee or a chilled glass of wine and soak up the life around me. It probably goes without saying, I spend many hours, when I am not writing, catching up on reading. 

•Are you currently working on anything new? 

I have just finished writing my fourth book. So I am at the editing stages all over again with a strong idea for book five hovering somewhere in the background.

•Have you ever considered writing a different genre? Have you ever written a different genre, if so what was it? 

So far, I have concentrated on the psychological thriller genre, this is my comfort zone area, dark, evocative and twisted. That doesn’t make me as scary as it sounds, honest! However, at the other end of the spectrum, I have had an idea for a children’s book whirring around my mind for some years. Occasionally, I jot down the ideas that randomly pop up and I really hope to make this a reality at some point in the next year or so. 

•What books have you recently read and enjoyed? 

So many wonderful books. To name a couple – I Invited Her In by Adele Parks and Anatomy of a Scandal by Sarah Vaughan. Both of these books, I found to be beautifully written with compelling plots and believable characters.

• Have you done any other jobs than being an author? What was your favourite? 

Aside from all the many varied part-time jobs as a teenager, I have worked within marketing and I have also worked as a mental health clinician for many years. But, I am never happier than when I am writing. Not in any way does it feel like work, I even love the editing process, so this answer is categorically, a really easy one.

•How did you celebrate your first book being published? 

I think I was working on this day and so creeping on to the internet at every possible opportunity to soak up the buzz from all the generous people sharing the word. In the evening, I celebrated at home with a glass or two of Prosecco, with my husband and family. It all felt a little surreal to be honest, I simply couldn’t believe I had written a book worthy of publishing!

•What does your typical day look like when you’re writing? 

I begin as early as possible because I am best free-writing in the morning and editing in the afternoon or evening, both sometimes. I wake early, see my son off to school, prepare a meal for the evening, usually something that can be slow-cooked in the oven that I have to smell all day long. Then, I begin writing between 7.30 and 8.00. I will t write through to around 13.00, then deal with any household necessities and usual distractions that cannot be ignored. In the afternoon, normally, I see to any emails and if I am not heading towards a deadline, I tend to research and edit. or if I am feeling naughty – I read. As everyone begins to return home in dribs and drabs, I do the family thing, we walk our dog a couple of miles across the sand dunes, then at some point we all eat together. I set myself personal deadlines and I am really strict about sticking to them. For example, during these last few weeks, many days, I have written or edited for ten hours plus a day and for seven days a week. Finally, somewhere, I make time, dipping in and out on the social media platforms. I read mostly before bed, usually knocking myself out with my kindle or book, falling asleep. 

•Finally, my out of the box question. Would you rather explore a new planet, or the deepest parts of the ocean? Why? 

Definitely, the deepest parts of the ocean. I would love to do this, deep sea diving and then some. It completely fascinates me, such incredible, mythical and beautiful creatures, organisms and plant life. It’s kind of amazing, another entire world existing beneath our reach in our oceans, most the time we have no idea about or any connection to any of it. This is one of my dreams, to explore the depths of our fabled oceans.

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If you would like to read a copy of this book for yourself, it is available to pre-order from the following retailers:

Pre-order links:

Amazon Kobo iBooks GooglePlay

Follow Aria
Website: http://www.ariafiction.com
Twitter: @aria_fiction
Facebook: @ariafiction
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Please check out these other fantastic blogs that are participating in the blog tour!