LUCY BURDETTE: Hmmm, I've never thought of my novels as lying to readers. But Daniella Bernett has, and we welcome her to the blog today to tell us about it!
DANIELLA BERNETT: I would like to thank Lucy Burdette for inviting me for a second visit to Jungle Reds. I’m basking in the glow of such distinguished company.
I’m delighted to let everyone know that DEADLY LEGACY, the second book in my mystery series featuring journalist Emmeline Kirby and jewel thief Gregory Longdon, was released on September 24 by Black Opal Books. It’s about stolen diamonds, a man who never existed and revenge laced with blackmail. Silly me, how could I forget? There’s also a murder—or two—to add a dash of spice. Meanwhile, the romantic tension between Emmeline and Gregory only serves to complicate matters. The book takes place in London, one of my most favorite cities.
What I’d like to discuss today is the art of the lie. If you think about it, writers are consummate liars. A story is not the truth. Oh, no. It is a massaging of the truth, a manipulation of perception if you will. A lie conjured by the writer’s mind for the sole purpose of taking the reader’s imagination on a journey to a different world. However to leave the reader breathless and craving more, the tale must have the ring of truth to be believed. A mirror image of reality, but reality turned upside down and twisted round to come up with a tantalizingly wicked alternative. A world where the two most powerful weapons in a writer’s arsenal are the words “what if.” There’s no end to the possibilities.
To take this idea a step further, mysteries and thrillers are a lie within a lie. For they deal with crime—a deception in itself. And, of course, they usually revolve around a murder, which is a betrayal of the natural order of a safe world. The sleuth must sift through a tissue of lies to bring a criminal to justice. But what kind of justice is it, when it was born of a lie?
Ah, that’s beauty of it. The more tangled the web of lies, the deeper the reader is drawn in until the mystery becomes a seductive puzzle for the mind.
Crime is most definitely wrong. Though I must admit, it is tremendous fun to lead readers on a cat-and-mouse chase for the truth. It’s naughty of me I know, but there’s a certain piquancy in casting a whisper of suspicion.
Honestly (pun intended), the art of lying makes for a criminally good story.
Daniella Bernett is a member of the Mystery Writers of America New York Chapter. Lead Me Into Danger is the first novel in the Emmeline Kirby-Gregory Longdon mystery series. She also is the author of two poetry collections, Timeless Allure and Silken Reflections. In her other professional life, she is the research manager for a nationally prominent engineering, architectural and construction management firm. Daniella is currently working on Emmeline and Gregory’s next adventure. Follow her on Facebook or on Goodreads.