The Award-Winning Author
Winner of the Edgar Allan Poe Award
Anna Mazzola is the award-winning author of three historical thrillers plus one ghost novel, and she is currently writing a legal/political thriller. She also writes short stories and scripts. Her debut historical crime novel, The Unseeing, won an Edgar Allan Poe award in the U.S. Her third novel, The Clockwork Girl, set in 18th century Paris, reached number 11 in the Sunday Times Chart. Her fourth novel, a ghost story set in Fascist Italy, will be published in April 2023. Her novels are often inspired by real crimes and scandals.
Anna is also a human rights and criminal justice solicitor, and provides training to other advocates. She lives in South London, with her family, a snake and a cat. Anna loves discussing stories and structure and has been workshopping and critiquing for many years. She understands the challenges of fitting writing around work and life. If you’re writing historical, gothic, crime or supernatural-tinged fiction, she will be an inspiring and encouraging writing coach.
Don’t spend too long on the first draft. It’s the clay from which you’ll form the novel (and a lot of it will end up in the bin!)
The Clockwork Girl
Paris 1750. In the midst of an icy winter, as birds fall frozen from the sky, chambermaid Madeleine Chastel arrives at the home of the city’s celebrated clockmaker and his clever, unworldly daughter.
Madeleine is hiding a dark past, and a dangerous purpose: to discover the truth of the clockmaker’s experiments and record his every move, in exchange for her own chance of freedom.
For as children quietly vanish from the Parisian streets, rumours are swirling that the clockmaker’s intricate mechanical creations, bejewelled birds and silver spiders, are more than they seem.
And soon Madeleine fears that she has stumbled upon an even greater conspiracy. One which might reach to the very heart of Versailles...
The Story Keeper
Audrey Hart is on the Isle of Skye to collect the folk and fairy tales of the people and communities around her. It is 1857 and the Highland Clearances have left devastation and poverty, and a community riven by fear. The crofters are suspicious and hostile to a stranger, claiming they no longer know their fireside stories.
Then Audrey discovers the body of a young girl washed up on the beach and the crofters reveal that it is only a matter of weeks since another girl disappeared. They believe the girls are the victims of the restless dead: spirits who take the form of birds.
Initially, Audrey is sure the girls are being abducted, but as events accumulate she begins to wonder if something else is at work. Something which may be linked to the death of her own mother, many years before.
London, 1837. After Sarah petitions for mercy, Edmund Fleetwood is appointed to investigate and consider whether justice has been done. Idealistic, but struggling with his own demons, Edmund is determined to seek out the truth.
Yet Sarah refuses to help him, neither lying nor adding anything to the evidence gathered in court. Edmund knows she’s hiding something, but needs to discover just why she’s maintaining her silence. For how can it be that someone would willingly go to their own death?
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