“While attending a crime scene on the outskirts of Maidstone, DI Kay Hunter makes a shocking discovery.
The victim has been brutally cut to pieces, his identity unknown.
When more body parts start turning up in the Kentish countryside, Kay realises the disturbing truth – a serial killer is at large and must be stopped at all costs.
With no motive for the murders and a killer who has gone undetected until now, Kay and her team of detectives must work fast to calm a terrified local population.
When a third victim is found, her investigation grows even more complicated.
As she begins to expose a dark underbelly to the county town, Kay and her team are pulled into a web of jealousy and intrigue that, if left unchecked, will soon claim another life.”
It is my absolute pleasure to welcome one of my favourite authors to the blog today to celebrate the publication of Gone to Ground; the sixth novel in her well respected and much-loved detective series. I am, of course, talking about the wonderful Rachel Amphlett and her utterly compelling Kay Hunter series. I love this series and will move mountains to make sure I read the latest release as soon as it’s available. There aren’t many other series I can say that about! I was thrilled to be able to share my review of Gone to Ground with you all on Sunday but if you missed it, here’s the link again (along with it’s five predecessors): 1. Scared to Death, 2. Will to Live, 3. One to Watch, 4. Hell to Pay, 5. Call to Arms and 6. Gone to Ground.
To celebrate the release of Gone to Ground I am delighted to welcome Rachel to damppebbles to talk to us about a killer’s motivations:
What might motivate a killer?
As I was writing book six in the Detective Kay Hunter series, Gone to Ground I realised halfway through that the person I thought was the murderer wasn’t, and another character came to light who had a lot more motivation to do the evil deeds I was uncovering.
Motivation is essential to a good police procedural. It doesn’t matter if they’re one of the good guys, or one of the bad guys. Everybody has motive for what they do.
It sounds so simple, but as people we’re a complicated mix of emotions and traits and it’s really important to me as a writer and reader that motives are believable.
Even characters who some might describe as “minor characters” have a motivation that drives them. That person who tells Kay a white lie to protect themselves or casts doubt on another aspect of the investigation to prevent a sordid part of their past being exposed – it’s all motivation.
My antagonist in Gone to Ground is motivated by revenge.
However, although I might start with revenge as a motive, I then delve into that a little further in order to develop the character and make that motivation believable.
Why does our killer seek revenge? What has been done to that character that someone has to die?
Meanwhile, my protagonist, Kay Hunter, is obviously motivated to catch the killer, but she’s also driven by the need to prove herself to her colleagues and to her superiors. She’s in a new role and juggling a lot of other tasks on top of her day-to-day duties and we see her motivations shift as the story unfolds.
I can’t wait to share Gone to Ground with you to see if you can spot the killer – these motivations paint some dark and twisted reasons why someone would be a murderer, and all of them are valid!
Excellent post, thanks so much Rachel. I have to confess that I wasn’t able to spot the killer, despite having my eagle ‘crime fiction reader’ eyes on the hunt for the culprit from the opening pages!
Gone to Ground by Rachel Amphlett was published in the UK on 8th July 2018 and is available in paperback and eBook versions (please note, some of the following links are affiliate links): | amazon.co.uk | amazon.com | Waterstones | BookDepository | Rachel’s online bookstore | Goodreads |
Before turning to writing, Rachel Amphlett played guitar in bands, worked as a TV and film extra, dabbled in radio as a presenter and freelance producer for the BBC, and worked in publishing as a sub-editor and editorial assistant.
She now wields a pen instead of a plectrum and writes crime fiction and spy novels, including the Dan Taylor espionage novels and the Detective Kay Hunter series.
Originally from the UK and currently based in Brisbane, Australia, Rachel cites her writing influences as Michael Connelly, Lee Child, and Robert Ludlum. She’s also a huge fan of Peter James, Val McDermid, Angela Marsons, Robert Bryndza, Ken Follett, and Stuart MacBride.
She’s a member of International Thriller Writers and the Crime Writers Association, with the Italian foreign rights for her debut novel, White Gold sold to Fanucci Editore’s TIMECrime imprint, and the first four books in the Dan Taylor espionage series contracted to Germany’s Luzifer Verlag.
Her novels are available in eBook, paperback and audiobook formats from worldwide retailers including Amazon, iBooks, Kobo, and Google Play.
A keen traveller, Rachel holds both EU and Australian passports and can usually be found plotting her next trip two years in advance!