Saturday, May 7, 2022

The Inciting Incident




HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: We always talk about how a good story begins: with one huge out-of-whack inciting incident that pulls the rug out from under the main character and forces them to do something to regain equilibrium.

Dervla McTiernan has lived that.

When she was shopping her first book, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. A serious, deadly, horrible brain tumor.

Let’s have her tell it:

DERVLA MCTIERNAN: “I got the news from my GP very early on a Friday morning, and a few minutes later, when I was still sitting in my car in the car-park, I got an email from a literary agent saying that she’d read my first fifty pages, and loved them, and asking me to send her the rest of the book. 

It was the most surreal moment. I felt like I was on an episode of the Truman Show, except I was the subject and the director had decided that the story was far too boring so threw in a tumor and an agent and surgery and all sorts of drama. 

It was a very scary time, because my children were only six and four, and the GP made it clear that without surgery the tumor would ultimately be fatal. And then the first surgeon we saw said that the tumor was inoperable. 

But then we were lucky enough to find another wonderful surgeon, and he was confident that he could do the surgery. In the end I had three weeks from diagnosis to surgery, and I spent that time distracting myself by sending my book out to agents. 

The surgery went well. I spent 11 days in hospital, and a few months at home recovering before I was well enough to go back to work. 

I think it was about six weeks after the surgery when I got my first offer of representation, and things just took off from there.”

HANK:  Took off? Now, Reds and readers, read her bio:

International #1 bestseller
Dervla McTiernan’s first two novels, The RΓΊin and The Scholar, were critically acclaimed around the world. Dervla has won multiple prizes, including a Ned Kelly Award, Davitt Awards, a Barry Award and an International Thriller Writers Award, and has been shortlisted for numerous others. Dervla’s third book, The Good Turn, went straight to #1 in the bestseller charts, confirming her place as one of Australia’s best and most popular crime writers.

WOW.


Now, her newest thriller, THE MURDER RULE, comes out next Tuesday! And if you are hearing about it here first, I can assure you that you will be hearing about it a lot more.

And here’s maybe the coolest part. Dervla is on the road for this book now, and instead of worrying about her very existence, she gets to worry about much more lovely and quotidian stuff. See below!

And ooh: she’s giving away a copy of THE MURDER RULE to THREE lucky commenters!


DERVLA MCTIERNAN: Hello, everyone! Thank you for letting me trespass on your space. I’m feeling very privileged to be hanging out (even virtually!) with such fantastic writers. By way of introduction, I’m Irish, but living in Western Australia, and I’m a full-time writer (and recovering lawyer). I live with my husband (also Irish – we met in a Tae Kwon Do class in college when we were seventeen, which let me tell you came pretty close to killing any nascent romance!) and our twelve-year-old daughter and ten-year-old son (both of whom have Australian accents and both of whom like to correct mine on an almost daily basis).

I’ve been writing full-time for a few years now, and my first stand-alone novel (The Murder Rule) comes out on May 10th in the US. I get to do my first US tour, which is a very big, very exciting deal for me, though it presents one tricky little problem. What to wear??

You would think that this would be a very easy problem to solve. Most of the book events I’ve been to have been very casual affairs, where anything goes and creative self-expression is appreciated. But the reality is that, these days, everything ends up on social media, and I don’t know about you guys, but I do feel a bit of pressure to get things right. I’m just not entirely sure what right is!

I’ve been telling myself that getting it right means accepting my forty-five year old body, which has carried me through a few major medical challenges over the years, and has the battle scars to prove it. And reminding myself that it is always about the stories, first and last. I have most of my packing done now, and though I’m still not quite sure how I’ll get through three weeks without access to my washing machine, the worry about getting things right is beginning to fade and the excitement of it all is beginning to take over.

My timing for this tour is pretty good, I have to say. Last year we bought a little 1940’s house, closer to our kids’ schools. We renovated it and moved in before Christmas. We absolutely love it, but it is truly teeny, and the kids are sharing a room, which is going to be a problem when they get a little older. So we’re building an extension (with a special writing room for me!) and it looks like works are going to kick off before I get back. I think the noisiest, messiest stuff might be done while I’m away, so my poor husband will be dealing with it all (and juggling two kids and two dogs at the same time) so I’m giving myself a big pat on the back for some truly excellent planning.


I’m so looking forward to getting out on the road and talking about this book. The Murder Rule tells the story of a young, idealistic law student named Hannah Rokeby. Hannah joins the Innocence Project on the eve of their biggest case – they’re trying to save an innocent man from death row. On the surface Hannah appears to be bright eyed and keen, eager to please and to be accepted by the team. But the real Hannah is quite different. She’s darker and more complicated, and she has her own agenda.

Every tour is different, of course, and the conversations you have at events vary depending on the topic of the book. I feel like The Murder Rule is giving me a lot of places to go, lots of topics and themes worth exploring. In researching for the book, I learned so much about how unjust convictions happen, about the junk science, the shoddy witness testimony, the forced confessions. I thought I knew much of it going in, but I learned a lot that surprised me. Some wrongful convictions come about due to corruption and dishonesty, of course, but a surprising number are due to what you might be consider to be ordinary human frailty. Self-delusion or self-importance. A refusal to admit that you might have gotten it wrong.

My first event was here in Perth on May 2nd, an “In Conversation” hosted by my best writing buddy, Sara Foster. I can’t think of a nicer way to kick things off. After my Perth events, I head to Sydney, and from there to Los Angeles. I’ll be in LA (with Rachel Howzell Hall), New York City (with Don Winslow), Phoenix (with TJ Newman) and Atlanta (with Karin Slaughter). If you happen to live close by I’d love to see you at an event!

HANK: And she will be in The Back Room (shhh, it’s not announced yet) on July 10, and on CRIME TIME on A Mighty Blaze on August 9! You can tell how much I love this book.) And ooh, yes, a thriller about a maybe-sinister lawyer? Yes, indeed.

So let's have a fun day on Jungle Red–to be entered to win a copy of THE MURDER RULE: you have a choice. What’s your favorite lawyer-book? What do you think about Dervla’s topic?

OR: how have your clothing choices changed in the pandemic?

(And I think it may already be tomorrow in Australia, which is always so reassuring to me
.)

81 comments:

  1. Congrats on the new book. It sounds great.

    How have my clothing choices changed since the pandemic? I'm still working from home, so my work wardrobe consists of either PJ pants (lounge pants, they are officially called) or shorts (depending on time of year) and a T-shirt. Nothing that requires a belt. It's wonderful. If I didn't need shoes to sit in my work chair comfortably, I wouldn't even wear them.

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    1. Hi Mark! You're describing my working uniform for most of the year, so I really can't complain about tour clothes! I live in PJ pants, and a T-shirt too. Add my Ugg slippers and a cup of tea and I'm in absolute heaven : )

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    2. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:21 AM

      Uggs! I have worn them for so many days now that I fear my feet will not be happy in anything else. This is going to be very very difficult…

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  2. Congratulations, Dervla, on your new book . . . . it sounds amazing and I’m looking forward to meeting Hannah.

    My favorite lawyer book? Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” . . . .

    How have my clothing choices changed in the pandemic? Hhmm . . . not much has changed as I’ve always been a fan of comfortable/casual . . . perhaps I wear lounging things a bit more these days . . . .

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    1. Hi Joan! Thank you so much. 'To Kill a Mockingbird' is extraordinary, isn't it? Actually, it's been far too long since I've read it. You've just inspired me to add it to my reading list this year. A treat to look forward to!

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    2. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:23 AM

      Oh, it will be very interesting to see how you respond to it. I read it recently for an online book group, and could barely talk about it without crying. And it is so different than the movie!

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  3. Wow, Dervla - blessings on getting that pesky brain tumor thing cleared up. It must have been terrifying. The new book sounds intriguing - congratulations!

    Author clothes - ugh. I've been trying to accept my post-lockdown sixty-nine year old body, which for my home writing life gets swathed in yoga pants, old jeans, and sweatshirts. But I managed to acquit myself at Malice Domestic with a couple pair of black pants (with forgiving waists), a blazer and a silk sweater, plus beads or a scarf.

    May you stay COVID-safe on your trip!

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    1. Hi Edith! Thank you. It was a very strange time, and I'm so grateful to be well and happy and writing : ) I like the sound of your style. Hard to beat black pants and a blazer! You sound far more put together than I am, but I'm working on it : )

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    2. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:26 AM

      I have to admit I am scrutinizing the wardrobe of in real-life on-book -tour writers! Trainers seem to be de rigueur. For which I am tentatively grateful. (Since I have worn high heels for the past however many years.)

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    3. Edith, You looked fabulous at Malice. Just wanted to inject that here. :)

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  4. DERVLA: Congratulations on your first whirlwind US tour for THE MURDER RULE! The book sounds intriguing. And wow, the brain tumour diagnosis/surgery and phone call from your agent certainly changed the trajectory of your life.

    We had multiple lockdowns in Ontario (Canada) during the 2+ years of the pandemic but I did not change my daily wardrobe. I'm retired, so my usual comfy t-shirt/jeans, summer activewear or UNIQLO tops/Columbia thermal pants were what I wore depending on the season.

    And I packed for an 11-day trip to New Mexico in April with just a carry-on bag. Blue/black/gray staples with a few bright tops got me through the 30-40 degree temperature swings from day to day.

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    1. Hi Grace! Did you really make it through an 11 day trip with just carry on? Teach me your magic, immediately! I have definitely over-packed, even though I know for sure I'll just end up wearing a few favourite things. I've never been to Ontario, only Toronto, very briefly. I'd love to visit some day. You get some pretty extreme weather, I think? I miss the rainy cold winters of Ireland terribly. We're just coming into winter here in Australia, and so it's getting cooler. I celebrate every degree drop in temperature : )

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    2. DERVLA: Yes, we go from +35C to -35C in Ottawa, Ontario. Glad to hear you visited my hometown of Toronto. As for packing, I restricted myself to carry on since I had to take 3 flights to get to NM (New Mexico, USA). Unlike you, I did not need to dress up for an audience. I wore my blue jeans, longer black shirt & a gray hoodie on the plane. A pair of black capris, some colourful tops & other necessities (underwear, socks) & that's it for clothes.

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    3. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:30 AM

      This is fascinating! I never check a bag, no matter how long I’m going away, because I am just terrified they will lose it. I have learned to take one black sleeveless dress, one other dress, three jackets, and a cardigan sweater. And a scarf or two. That all fits in my roller bag with two pairs of shoes. Then I wear black pants and a black top, and a different jacket, and a black shawl and rubber soled shoes on the plane. so far so good. At least in the before times.

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    4. HANK: Agreed, I stick to carry-on only after being on a couple of flights to the US when my checked-in luggage did not make it to the final destination for days.

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  5. What an inspiring story, and congrats on the book!
    My wardrobe hasn't changed. Being off work or working from home is not an option, working at a nursing home, so scrubs then pjs or something comfortable at home. After the last couple months that couldn't decide if it was winter or spring it's finally warm enough to get out the shorts! Not quite warm enough for sandals though.

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    1. Thanks so much, Alicia. You work in a nursing home? That must have been so hard over the past few years. I think everyone is giving a big thumbs up to comfy clothes. I guess it's not a very controversial subject ... or maybe it's just that we're all readers so we naturally fall that way!

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    2. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:32 AM

      Well I for one realized a bit that I had been thinking maybe too much about what I was wearing. And not at all about comfort. Not at all! So that was a big change…

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  6. Dervla, congratulations on your amazing life story, and the new book as well. You have a star-studded book tour set up, including our Hank. Off the top of my head, I'll say The Lincoln Lawyer or maybe Presumed Innocent--so many great legal thrillers out there. I do want to know how two Irish citizens made their way to Australia?

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    1. Thanks so much, Lucy! I love The Lincoln Lawyer. I think it's my favourite Michael Connelly book (so excited to check out the TV series when it comes out). Re Australia, we emigrated in 2011. The 2007 economic crash hit Ireland really badly, and it pretty much imploded my little legal practice. We moved to Australia for a fresh start (that one's a bit a of a long story πŸ˜‚)

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    2. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:33 AM

      My husband is a criminal defense attorney, and he cannot wait to read your book! The murder rule is influx in Massachusetts right now… And that is a big part of our lives.

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  7. Wow, Dervla, too many plot twists! I admire your ability to stay focused on writing with brain tumor drama! And how wonderful that you were able to find a surgeon who could help.

    Are you in Perth? One of these days I'd love to get back to Australia and go beyond NSW and the Blue Mountains. Such an incredible country.

    Wardrobe is a challenge these days! Pandemic poundage, aging, and no social situations for two years has left a big deficit in my wardrobe, for sure. On top of that, so many local stores that used to be reliable sources of great outfits no longer exist. We have a big deal wedding to attend in a couple weeks and I have resigned myself to wearing a dress from the depths of my closet, the old reliable.

    Like Grace, I have traveled with only carryon, the last "big" trip was for three weeks in Europe. It isn't hard, as long as you don't get carried away with shoes. Twist Phelan, another mystery author and peripatetic traveler, has a great travel blog. I followed her tips like they were Bible passages. https://travelswithtwist.com/

    And my favorite lawyer book is Anatomy of a Murder, by John D. Voelker. It's an old book, but I reread it every decade or so. So twisty.

    Have a safe tour! Wish I lived closer to one of your speaking date locations.

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    1. True about shoes, I wore my regular New Balance running shoes on the flight & packed flipflops for the hotel. And like Edith mentioned, some colourful scarves and/or distinct necklaces or other jewelry can make the same outfit look different. I am also subscribed to Travels with Twist weekly newsletter....lots of great travel tips.

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    2. Hi Karen! Yes, I'm in Perth. Western Australia is so beautiful. I always think it's one of the world's best kept secrets. The city itself is special, built along the Swan River, and there are so many parks, but if you drive only 2 or 3 hours south, you'll find hundreds of miles of the most beautiful beaches you've ever seen, mostly empty, what seems like endless forest, and great vineyards too. We are incredibly spoiled! The only downside is being so far away from family in Ireland.
      I'm sure your older dress is gorgeous. They're only ever old in our eyes! I went and bought something new for my TV thing, and have changed my mind and I'm wearing something I've had for two years πŸ™ƒ. (I'm definitely going to check out that travel blog, by the way).

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    3. So few Americans get to Australia, it's just such a long trip, as you know. Western Australia is even further for us, but it sounds wonderful.

      My youngest daughter spent a semester at Macquairie in Sydney, and while she was there she took advantage of being so close and visited most of the major cities, including Perth. We so wish we'd taken more than two weeks for our visit.

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  8. Congrats on the new book!
    Favourite lawyer book? A Certain Justice by PD James
    Covid wardrobe? I just packed away my winter clothes in exchange for summer ones and I realized that I have not worn my “good” clothes for 2 years so that says something.

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    1. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:35 AM

      Love PD James! and yes, I was about to go on book tour before the pandemic, and bought a bunch of new clothes. None of which I have ever worn.

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  9. Hello Dervla - what a lovely name! You were really on a roller coaster ride, and I’m so glad for your great outcome.

    My favorite lawyer book was John Grisham’s The Firm, until I read his first book, A Time to Kill, that was amazing. Another good one is Word of Honor by Nelson DeMille.

    I’m like you when packing - I like my suitcase to be a mini version of my closet so I have choices every day, although I usually stick to just a few of the outfits and always wonder why I brought so much! I can’t imagine just having a carry on and admire people who do.

    Black drawstring pants and t-shirts are my staples at the moment because I love the comfort.

    Congratulations on your book release and have a wonderful tour and safe travels!

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    1. Thank you so much, Celia : ) I'm flying tomorrow, to LA from Sydney, and I'm planning on wearing black drawstring pants and a t-shirt. Hard to beat! πŸ˜„

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  10. Becky Sue EpsteinMay 7, 2022 at 8:14 AM

    Before the pandemic I traveled a lot, mainly for work.
    One of my favorite travel tips: wear clothes on the long flight over that you can just throw out when you arrive.
    And pack old socks & underwear that you can also discard along the way. Why carry around dirty clothes?
    As for shirts, pants & skirts: I've washed things out more often than I ever wanted to -- and learned that it's OK to put on clean clothing that is still slightly damp at the edges.
    Two pairs of shoes is fine, plus small travel slippers for comfort in your room, and flip-flops in case you're concerned about shower cleanliness. And a rolled-up swimsuit in a zipper-lock bag in case there's a pool or hot tub.
    A few silk or cashmere sweaters & scarves can dress up many outfits, year-round.

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    1. Becky Sue, those are some awesome tips. I particularly like the one about wearing old clothes on the long-haul. I never really want to re-wear what I wear on a long flight on the same trip. Everything feels so grubby (more so these days!) I always bring a swim-suit (and sometimes even use it πŸ˜„).

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    2. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:36 AM

      Travel slippers! Absolutely! they take up no room at all, and I am always so grateful for them.

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  11. Dervla, welcome to JRW and congratulations on your latest book. Thank you for sharing your story. My heart skipped when I read about the severe diagnosis and the agent calling about your book in the same moment. One of my very dear friends also had a brain tumor removed by a very talented surgeon. Although she will be monitored for her whole life, she is brave and determined. The fact that your children were so small when your family went through this, had to have been terrifying.

    When I used to attend conferences, I had a black suit (skirt, jacket, slacks) with a blouse, a sweater and several colorful scarves. Each year I added a scarf and noone knew it was still the same old suit. My attire these days are mostly baggy jeans and sweaters or tees.

    I love The Lincoln Lawyer but A Time to Kill is also an amazing story, although much harder to read.

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    1. Yes, both terrific! And of course, Defending Jacob!

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    2. Thank you so much, Judy. I'm so glad to hear that your friend survived and is doing well. The black suit method sounds like the way to go to me!

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  12. Presumed Innocent by Scott Turow. I was working my first job as a secretary/paralegal and my first job at any law firm and suddenly, lawyers were a "thing." It was a remarkable book. Second favorite - The Firm by John Grisham - yes, those firms do exist. Can't say more.

    Dervla, I had no idea that The Innocence Project was international. I am so looking forward to this book! As for fashion advice, I'm not a maven, but be yourself and dress to please that self!

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    1. Oohh...we want to hear more, dear Kait! We need plots!

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  13. Welcome and congratulations, Dervla! Not sure which lawyerly book is my favorite; there are so many good ones. I definitely look forward to reading yours. As for clothes, keep them simple and comfortable. I hope you will enjoy your tour as much as the fans will enjoy meeting you.

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  14. Congratulations, Dervla, on your latest book and upcoming tour. I'm happy to meet you and your writing here.

    I think we put too much onus on fashion and too much pressure on ourselves when it comes to dressing for occasions. Clothes should be clean and comfortable. Period. If pushed for style, too, I would add a colourful scarf. Fast fashion is bad for the planet.

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  15. Hank Phillippi RyanMay 7, 2022 at 10:41 AM

    All of the legal thrillers mentioned are iconic, of course! And a Janice Hallett ‘s newish The Appeal is also incredible. And unique. I also love David Ellis— he’s a federal judge in Chicago, and his books are absolutely great. And Defending Jacob, of course. And the movie Witness for the Prosecution.And The Verdict, book and movie!
    As for clothing, I wore high heels for the first time in two years a couple of weeks ago, and my feet have never been the same. It was tragic. Terrifying. Horrible. Decades of training— I never thought high heels were uncomfortable before!— have vanished.:-)

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  16. Dervla,
    You are an amazing person! Sending your book out to agents while waiting to have brain surgery! Amazing! I would have been too distracted to try out something new.

    I retired in May of 2018. By the time the pandemic shutdown began, I was already used to wearing casual clothing. Right now I desperately need new shoes. The last time I bought any was the summer before the pandemic. I’m still uncomfortable about going into stores where I need to have close contact with anyone. The Covid numbers in my state are especially high at the moment.

    I look forward to reading your books!
    DebRo

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    1. Two little words: order online! xooxxoo

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    2. Buying shoes has been a lifetime nightmare for me! I have terrible foot problems and need to try on lots of sizes and styles!

      DebRo

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  17. Hi Dervla! Congratulations on The Murder Rule and your big tour! Being retired (or self-unemployed, as I like to call it) my wardrobe has been very casual for years. No changes at all in recent times. As for favorite lawyer books I enjoyed Scott Turow's Presumed Innocent and John Grisham's The Runaway Jury. Agatha Christie's Witness for the Prosecution is a classic. And I absolutely loved the movie My Cousin Vinny.

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    1. OH! How could I forge My Cousin Vinny?? A classic! xx

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  18. Hi Dervla! There is a tie for my two favorite lawyer novels between The Firm and the Lincoln Lawyer. Although as i read through other comments I keep thinking "oh - that one was fabulous, too, and that one!"
    The Murder rule sounds fabulous, and I hope your tour is wonderful. Now that I have heard about your books I will need to get them! Also I hope you get back home to find the major part of the remodel done ( and as you want it!).

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    1. Yes, wouldn't that be strange to come home and have your house be different?

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    2. Hi Christine! Thank you so much, and I adored both The Lincoln Lawyer and The Firm, so snap! I think it might be wishful thinking on my part about the remodel ...suspect we have six months of fun ahead of us : )

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  19. Congrats, Dervla! I love the Cormac books and can't wait to read The Murder Rule. I think the first lawyer mystery I ever read was Witness for the Prosecution and that's the one that's stayed with me. The pacing, the slow reveal . . . Best of luck with the tour!

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    1. SUCH a great story! I love it every time we see the movie.

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  20. Dervla, welcome to the Jungle Reds blog. So many books and authors gain a great domino promotion from being on here. The Murder Rule sounds so thrilling. Wrongful prosecution and, even worse, wrongful conviction are such nightmares. I don't see how a person makes it through being falsely accused and convicted. The recent TV show with Renee Zellweger and entitled "The Thing about Pam" was based on the true story of the murder of Betsy Faria. Betsy's "friend" Pam Hupp points the police and prosecutor towards Betsy's husband as the killer, and they take it and run with it. Of course, it's a misdirection by Pam, as she is the actual murderer. Watching Betsy's husband go through the mistreatment by the police and the trial and being in prison until his innocence is proven is hard. And then, last night I was watching 20/20 about the wrongful prosecution and conviction of Anthony Harris, who was only twelve-years-old when brought to trial for the murder of his five-year-old neighbor. While in the Betsy Faria case, her husband never confessed, Anthony did confess, after a police interview in which he was told he could go home if he only confessed. In both of these cases, the prosecutors became fixated on the wrongfully accused and wouldn't consider anyone else as a suspect. Also in both cases, there were clearly other avenues of interest that should have been explored. And, of course, neither prosecutor would admit she was wrong.

    I hope you have a wonderful tour here in the U.S., Dervla. I look forward to reading The Murder Rule.

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    1. Oh, cannot wait to see that! On the list. xx

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    2. Hi Kathy! Thank you so much. I haven't watched The Thing About Pam yet, though I've seen some ads for it. I wonder if I can download it for the plane today? Am going to go and check. That is terribly sad about poor Anthony Harris. I read somewhere as part of my research for the book that out of every five convictions overturned due to DNA evidence or similar, in two of them the innocent accused person has confessed. I think we underestimate the pressure and desperation people can feel in that interview room.

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    3. Many many stories horrifying stories about this. On a completely different note--my husband once had a client how confessed to everything. Everything. Without being asked. In jail, they called him The Confessor. Very complicated.

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  21. DERVLA: Welcome to Jungle Reds! And Congratulations on your New novel. Why on earth am I learning about your books for the first time today? One of the things that I love about Jungle Reds is that I always learn about new to me authors. I checked out THE SCHOLAR from the library and it is a page turner!

    Regarding your brain tumor, did your Health Insurance in Australia cover the costs of surgery? If it is OK to ask?

    Regarding carry on bags, I always bring carry on bags because I had the unfortunate experience of the airlines losing my baggage one time too many! It took a lot of practice before I figured out a system that worked for me.

    Diana

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    1. That's why we are here! xxx To tell you about new books..xoxo

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    2. Hi Diana! Wow, you are a fast mover! Thank you so much for reading The Scholar, I'm so glad you're enjoying it. No problem at all re the health insurance question. In Australia the public health system is entirely free, so even without insurance I wouldn't have had costs, but I did have private health insurance so I used that. If I'd gone public I probably would have had the same surgeon but would have stayed in a different hospital. My insurance (which was just pretty standard hospital cover) covered all of the costs of my surgeons, anaesthetist, tests, private room etc (I didn't pay anything to my hospital or surgeons). I might have paid for an MRI privately, I think (maybe AU100??) I do continue to see my endocrinologist privately, and those consultations are part covered by our medicare. Total cost to me per visit, prob about AU$120, or about US$70. Hope that helps!

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    3. Hi Dervla. thank you! Oh, my favorite novel about lawyers is RUMPOLE OF THE OLD BAILEY by John Mortimer. My favorite catchphrase is "She Who Must Be Obeyed". LOL

      Diana

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  22. Congratulations Dervla! What an inspiring and courageous story. You are amazing. I wear casual clothing always, comfortable and not trendy but classic. Phillip Margolin's novels are captivating.

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    1. Oh yes, he's wonderful. And how could I forget John Lescroart?

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    2. Thank you so much. That's incredibly kind of you. I haven't read Phillip Margolin! Thank you for the recommendation.

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  23. Welcome and congratulations! Your story has a happy and wonderful ending. Thank you for giving us this peek into your life and your writing. The first lawyer book which I ever read was The Firm and I was enthralled. I wear outfits that are easy to travel in and walk in. Mostly soft material. Wishing you happiness and great health.

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    1. yes, that was the wonderful gateway book for so many, right?

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    2. Thank you and you're most welcome : ) The Firm was fabulous, wasn't it? Such a genius twist right at the beginning.

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  24. I enjoy Lisa Scottoline's formidable women lawyers. As for my own quiet, retiree in pandemic clothing . . . laundry and replacement purchases prove I've been living in loungewear and scrubs. Outdoor wear may last forever at this rate.

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    1. YES! (I would not be here without her, I sometimes think....)

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    2. I'm going out to grab a Lisa Scottoline book right now!

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    3. Oh, yes, get What Happened to the Bennetts! Or--reds and readers, which one would you recommend?

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  25. Hi, Dervla, Welcome to the blog! I am a huge fan of your work and very much looking forward to reading The Murder Rule. I'll look for your event in Phoenix as that's where I reside. Congrats on your release!

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    1. Hi Jen! Thank you so much! I look forward to meeting you in Phoenix!

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    2. Oh, I am swooning with envy! xx Take photos!

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  26. Loved Dervla’s first books. Too bad Seattle isn’t on the US tour. Then a pair of good jeans, a nice top and boots would get you through. Of course none of us wore jeans during the pandemic. However mine now fit again. Best wishes.

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  27. AND THE WINNERS ARE: DebRo, Christine Falcone and Karen in Ohio! Email me your addresses at hank@hankpryan.com!

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  28. Thank you for a wonderful day, dear Dervla! And have an amazing tour!

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