Friday 13 December 2019

BLOG TOUR ~ Snakes and Ladders by Victoria Selman

Hi Everyone,

Today was my stop on the Blog Tour for Snakes and Ladders by Victoria Selman where I've an author content piece from Victoria where she introduces us to her charater, Ziba Mackenzie & also tells us about the setting of her debut nnovel Snakes and Ladders. I was thrilled to be asked by Tracy Fenton from Compulsive Readers to take part along with some other fab book bloggers. You can find out who else has taken part in this fabulous Blog Tour at the end of the author content so without further ado, here it is:


Her job is hunting killers. Her talent is thinking like them.

Gutsy, fierce and in your face, Ziba is confronting her own demons as well as society’s most dangerous minds- dealing with her husband’s premature death while fighting her feelings for his best friend. Navigating these challenges takes strength and skill especially since her professional life has a way of trespassing into the personal.

“Trust gets you killed faster than an MK-77”
The daughter of an adored Iranian father and an emotionally distant English mother, Ziba is a social misfit with serious trust issues whose father died suddenly when she was in her teens. As an adult, Ziba keeps her mother, Emmeline, at arm’s length. Though finally in Snakes and Ladders, we see that perhaps Emmeline understands her better than she thinks.
“His voice was deep and gravelly with a Scottish lilt. He used his hands. He planted his feet. He commanded the room. I couldn’t take my eyes off him. The guy snared me the moment he opened his mouth.”

Less than two years after they met, Ziba’s husband Duncan was lying dead beside her on the pavement; a circular wound puncturing his forehead, an unmarked VW Crafter speeding away. His killer has never been caught. And Ziba won’t rest until he is.
“Jack makes me laugh. He calls me out on my shit. When I’m with him I’m back in my father’s study, chomping sugared almonds and listening to the Tehran Symphony Orchestra on his big old-fashioned gramophone. I’m home.”

Jack is Ziba’s lighthouse, the one person she can rely on. And in her line of work, you really need a friend. Only now she’s falling in love with him everything’s about to change- not least because moving on also means letting go.

Setting of Snakes and Ladders

In Snakes and Ladders, I move between the FBI Academy in Quantico, Scotland Yard in London and HMP Wakefield, nicknamed Monster Mansion owing to the notorious inmates it has housed. Ian Huntley, Harold Shipman and Michael Sams have all been ‘guests’ there. It’s not a nice place.
The story takes place in March with the snow falling in London as Ziba arrives back at Scotland Yard having been recalled from Quantico to join the hunt for the Pink Rose Killer, a serial murderer terrorising the capital. It’s freezing, unseasonably cold. The city is shrouded in white.
In these conditions she must to and from Wakefield trying to extract information out of the Lecter like Vernon Sange who seems to know the perpetrator’s identity. And who has a terrible price.
I wanted to use the snow to increase the oppressive atmosphere already created by the prison visits, crushing timeframe until the next murder and the perpetrator’s closed house so that the reader would feel, as Ziba does, that there is little room to breathe.

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