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Read on the books that helped me write The Road Beyond Ruin  

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CLICK HERE to read about my new book HALF IN SHADOW to be released 1st January 2022.

Click here for Gemma's interview with ManyBooks


My story ideas can be ignited by family history, news articles, studies, and the places I visit. Each book takes months of research, each writing period much the same, and the editing twice to three times as long in some cases, and usually with a goal in mind. That's not to say I might change my mind about characters or pathways a third of the way into the story, but the finishing point usually stays true to my original idea.

Earlier works include Gothic fantasy for young adults. The first drafts for these were written while I was studying creative writing, but weren't published until years later. It wasn't a huge creative leap to historical fiction and the human consequences of war. My books have all involved researching places and periods before my time, and both themes are character-driven. The idea to write about WWII originated after I interviewed war veterans as part of college assignments in the 90s, but it would be many years before I felt I had the confidence and experiences, and enough research material, to create my characters.

I visited Auschwitz-Birkenau and other memorials, and I've read many WWII reference books and personal accounts over the last two decades, as well as growing up with family members who experienced war up-close. The stories I have written pale in comparison with the real stories of human endurance shown by those men, women and children who suffered during this and other wars, past conflicts, and events that are happening now.

It has been a privilege working with my wonderful editor, Jodi, these past years, and the rest of the professional team behind the scenes at Lake Union Publishing. As well, I'm thrilled by the work of the agents, publishers and translators for Broken Angels, now published in Slovak (Ikar), Czech (Knizni klub) and Dutch (Uitgeverij Kok). The Road Beyond Ruin has also been published in Dutch (KokBoekencentrum). Check out the stunning cover on the 'Books' link.

I am truly grateful for all the feedback, letters and mentions, some of which left me a little overwhelmed! Thank you readers, reviewers, librarians, retailers, family & friends for all your support!

Gemma Liviero

© Gemma Liviero 2018

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