Today is special – a launch day for one of my novels – Stolen Child. It was published some years ago in the UK and is now about to be launched in the United States. I feel nervous, excited, slightly apprehensive and, about all, very happy to have this opportunity to engage with a whole new readership.
Stolen Child is based on a memory from my childhood. A baby girl had been taken from her pram in Dublin and was only discovered four years later when the woman who took her returned to the scene of her crime to snatch a second child. This time she was not so fortunate. The second baby, a boy, was recovered some days later and the presence of a little girl in the same house was investigated. She was, as the police suspected, the missing child – and was soon reunited with her natural parents. She was photographed in her mother’s arms and it was her expression of fear and bewilderment that has always stayed in my memory. While I was researching this old story, I saw the photograph again – and it was exactly as I remembered. The image stayed with me for one reason only – the child’s world I knew as safe and secure suddenly had a crack – bad things could happen – and newspapers were no longer about comic strips and kiddy crosswords – but told stories about loss, separation, longing and reunification. As with all works of fiction my novel soon developed it own momentum but every story has its own catalyst to set it on its course.
Stolen Child is published by Bookouture