Hey friends! Today is my stop on the blog tour for Darcy Lane by James Graham, and I am bringing you a guest post. Enjoy!
Darcy Lane by James Graham
Published by: Austin Macauley Publishers Ltd
Release date: 30/10/2020
Where to find: Amazon
Summary: As she sat in her bed reading from a book, seven-year-old Elise Rose was unaware that her childhood would be over by morning. She was too young to know that violent hands played cruel tricks or that innocence held little fight against cheap beer and cigarette butts. After the trauma of childhood, Elise, now twenty years old, walks the streets in need of escape. The town around her has become stained and the ghost of a loved one will not let her rest. So, when she stumbles across an isolated house at the end of Darcy Lane, she believes that she has found the thing that she needs more than any other. The house is away from town, surrounded by green fields and absent of the memories that she would rather forget. The house is bright in the morning sun and soon becomes lodged in her imagination. So, the question is set. How far is she willing to go in search of absolution?
Five Interesting Things About Your Main Protagonist
Her start in life
I think the most interesting thing about my main character is her start in life and how this affects her in the proceeding years. It has always amazed me how one moment can shape an entire life. Elise, my main character, is a good example of this. She witnesses the murder of her mother in the first chapter, an incident that essentially shapes the rest of the book. Trauma is a difficult subject to write about. However, I did enjoy exploring the ways in which trauma can affect a person’s life. The book is almost an underdog story. It is about a young girl who had a tough start in life. A girl that grows up hoping to find both happiness and escapism. I think her trauma makes her unique. When I was writing her, I was aware that I was writing a different personality. A woman with different ambitions to most women her age. In a perverse way, I think her suffering made her interesting. It certainly made her interesting to write about.
I think her beauty makes her interesting. Not that a character needs to be attractive to be interesting, but I believe that the contrast between her outer beauty and her internal strife creates an interesting dynamic. Her beauty also makes her admired by men. Something which is both a blessing and a curse. A key example of this being her relationship with Jack Clapham – a relationship that turns out to be more of a curse than a blessing. Perhaps, the idea that her beauty makes her interesting is shallow on my part. However, the tortured soul with a pretty face appeals to me. It’s obvious throughout the book, or at least to me, that Elise is someone with a lot of potential. Her beauty only becomes interesting to me, in the knowledge that she is both thoughtful and soulful. She isn’t just a pretty face. She has a deeper existence. When writing her, I tried to draw a character with charisma. I think I achieved that. She is open, yet still slightly mysterious. She’s beautiful, yet scarred, too.
Something else I find interesting about Elise are her desires. She is not materialistic. She doesn’t want followers on Instagram or designer clothes. She just wants a home and to feel safe. She wants boredom as much as anything else. She wants to wake up relaxed and go to bed in the same mood. She wants to forget parts of her past, and with time, possibly find peace with the things that bother her. She wants to see her grandad relaxed and happy. She wants to live in a home that she’s proud of, something that’s her own. She wants normality. She wants above all things, to have peace of mind.
I think that these desires make her both interesting and different. She wants things that many people have from birth and for much of their lives. I think this yearning for normality makes her someone readers can root for, too.
Her relationship with her mother
I think that her relationship with her mother makes her interesting. Not only because it’s the death of the mother that leads to much of her suffering, but because there’s a constant fear throughout the book that Elise will follow the same path as her mother. The attraction to shady characters, the drinking, the unwillingness to take advice from those who care about her. Elise’s mother, Grace, changed after the death of her own mother. In a way, it’s hard not to see the similarities in their stories.
Elise is also haunted by her mother. She becomes emotional and flustered when reading from her journal. She sees her during her psychosis. Elise’s similar appearance to her mother leads to Jack’s interest in her, ultimately leading to her making some poor decisions. Elise and her mother were bound in a sort of cruel fusion from the moment Grace was murdered. In that moment, she became less like a mother and more like a bad memory. It’s hard not to over-emphasize the importance of the first chapter in the story. It’s the source of all Elise’s angst and the reason why the memory of her mother becomes so detrimental in her life.
To me, one of the most interesting things about Elise is what her future might hold. I can honestly say that even after writing her and spending so much time thinking about her, I honestly don’t know what her future would hold past the end of the book. A large part of me hopes that she’d be able to find peace, although I do doubt it. It’s hard to know if she’ll ever make her way to Darcy Lane, either literally or metaphorically. I do, however, feel as though she is a person that deserves happiness, and I think that most people who read the book will feel the same. Many of the people who have read the book have asked if there will be a sequel. With many stating that they want to know what happens to Elise beyond the end of the book. I think that this sums Elise up in many ways, she someone who’s story interests people. She’s complicated. I know that if I ever do write a sequel, her character will allow me to take the story in many different directions. Perhaps, it’s something I’ll do in the future.
James Graham was born on the 28th of December, 1996. Born in London, he was raised in Preston, Lancashire. He started writing in his late teens. ‘Darcy Lane’ is his debut novella.