I am thrilled to introduce readers to an amazing new talent, Julia Madeleine, author of No One to Hear You Scream. I read this tale of realistic terror a while ago and absolutely loved it. The writing is magnificent and the ending is phenomenal!
Just who is Julia Madeleine? Well, according to her bio, she is:
“the youngest daughter of Irish immigrant parents from Belfast, Northern Ireland. Born in Canada and raised in a small town in southern-western Ontario, Julia honed her dual passions for art and fiction writng from the time she was old enough to hold a crayon. As a teenager she moved to Toronto and graduated in Media Writing from Sheridan College. She wrote for a number of entertainment magazines, while spending all her free time writing fiction, and then in 2000, her passion for art led her, quite by accident, into a career in the tattoo industry. Home is Mississauga, where she lives with her husband and teenaged (future tattoo artist) daughter. For a year she lived in the country on a 30-acre property in the middle of nowhere, which became the inspiration for her second novel, No One To Hear You Scream.”
Please tell us a bit about your book and what you hope readers take away from reading it.
No One To Hear You Scream is the story of the Jameson family from Manhattan who purchase a country house in foreclosure only to be terrorized by the former owner, a violent criminal just released from incarceration.
My hope is to send chills up the spines of all my readers and make it impossible for them to stop turning the pages.
Who are your favorite characters in the story?
My favourite characters is Rory Madden, the antagonist. He was such a fun character to write and I really enjoyed getting deep into his psyche. Justine Jameson, the protagonist, is also a favourite. I put a lot of my own teenage self into her character.
Do you have a favorite line or excerpt from your book?
I think it would have to be in chapter nine when Rory pays a visit to his former lawyer who swindled him. The lawyer was certain Rory would be doing a long prison sentence and wouldn’t catch up with him. There’s something so delightfully indulgent about vengeance. Here’s a short excerpt:
“You know what the second worst day of my life was?”
The man shook his head and pressed his lips together, as if bracing himself for more bad news. He stared at Rory with watery eyes, the overhead lights gleaming on his bald scalp.
“When those fucking bastards took away my house, and my lawyer I made the grave mistake of trusting because I basically had no other choice, goes and robs me. When I’m at the most vulnerable moment, confined to a jail cell, my home and my possessions all hanging in the balance, and I turn to the only person I can, what does he do? He helps himself to my money. What kind of lawyer, can I ask you, Mr. Blackmore, does that to a client?”
The man didn’t reply. He just gazed at Rory with a frightened look, like a video screen on pause, capturing and freezing a face in some bizarre half expression.“What kind, Mr. Blackmore, huh?”
“Please…please put the gun away, Rory.”
“Aye, I told you you’d regret this, didn’t I? I told you I’d come for you.”
“Rory, please I have a family, three kids and my first grand baby on the way and—”
“Shut the fuck up.” Rory was so calm that it surprised him. He thought for sure he would lose control of himself when he laid eyes on this scumbag lawyer again. Up until that very moment, he felt certain he wouldn’t be able to hold himself back. Perhaps all that time in jail had conditioned him to being more patient. Or maybe it was the feeling of the twelve gauge in his hands that allowed him control of his emotions. His long coat had been perfect for concealing it when he walked into the office. Maybe it was the blow he snorted in his car in the parking lot—he’d wasted no time finding the drug sources in town—before he came into the building. Possibly it was a combination of all these things. Yet he knew it was only a matter of time before he killed this man, and he marveled at how things sometimes worked out, how the tables could turn. How easily power could be gained and lost.
Rory leaned back comfortably in the chair, his right leg crossed over the other with the shotgun resting on his knee, pointed at the lawyer’s fat face. He watched the man loosen the collar of his shirt, as if it was a ligature choking him. The lawyer sat stiff behind his desk in his big green leather chair in his swanky office. Rory sat across from him in another, smaller, leather chair, designed to telegraph the difference between the lawyer and his clients, so there was no doubt about who held the power in the room. Although now, the irony of this was blatantly clear. All illusions had been stripped away.
If your current release were to be turned into a movie, who would you love to see play what characters and why?
Oh, I think The Rock should play Rory Madden, although I don’t know how an audience would feel about him playing a really bad guy. But he’s such a perfect male specimen I think physically he’d suit the role. Scarlet Johansson would make the perfect Justine Jameson.
What are your favorite aspects of writing?
I really enjoy when ideas flow so quickly that a story seems to simply write itself and it comes so fast I can barely keep up with the typing. That’s magnificent when that happens.
Your least favorite aspects of writing?
Definitely proofreading! The spell checker is great for picking up spelling errors but it can’t differentiate between words like “heard” or “hurd”. It’s amazing how I can read and re-read the same paragraph countless times and completely miss an error. Typos seem to crop up overnight like weeds. I have nightmares about them. It’s maddening!
Who are some of your favorite authors/books?
I loved Janet Fitch’s White Oleander; I think I read it three times. I also loved Natsuo Kirino’s Out, Jenn Ashworth’s A Kind Of Intimacy, and Stewart Neville’s The Ghosts Of Belfast. I’m really into Chuck Hogan right now as well as Andrew Vachss.
What are you reading right now?
Currently I’m reading Jenn Ashworth’s second novel Cold Light and I’m also reading Mommy’s Little Girl by Diane Fanning.
If you could have a dinner party and invite five authors – dead or alive – who would they be and what would you serve them?
They’d get spaghetti, because I always make spaghetti. Who doesn’t like spaghetti? I’d probably invite Joyce Carrol Oats because I love her, Stephen King because he’s got such a twisted mind, The dead dinner guests would be Edgar Allen Poe — what writer wouldn’t want to talk to him and listen to him recite The Raven. Shakespeare would get an invite as well as H.P Lovecraft.
What is a book that you wish you could say that you had written and why?
The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson because the guy got a $1.25 million publishing advance. The premise of the book was unique and I think that’s what it takes to have that kind of break-out novel; a unique idea or character.
What is the greatest piece of advice (for writing and/or just living) that you have heard?
“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”
–Christopher Robin to Pooh