Friday, September 13, 2013

Strong People Weep...But They Don't Go Under, A Guest Post from Carol Hedges

I have to once again thank #wwwblogs for helping me make yet another cool lady author friend. Every Wednesday, women authors all over the world use the twitter hashtag #wwwblogs to share their latest blog post. Every Wednesday, at least blog I read really gets me excited for whatever reason. In the case of Carol Hedges, I was immediately struck by two things: she writes a strong heroine, a girl spy series. This is an author who appreciates strong women in fiction. Second, she is a car fan!!! I drooled over her car. It's black and pink and classic and just screams girl power! She's given me permission to share the photo. Take a nice long look, drool your heart out, and please welcome Carol Hedges.

'Stories begin with once upon a time.' This is the opening sentence of Jigsaw Pieces my latest ebook. It is written in the voice of 18 year old Annie Skjaerstad. She continues: 'Once upon a time when I was 16 years old, somebody I knew died and changed my life forever'.

Jigsaw Pieces traces two pivotal experiences in Annie's life: the suicide of a classmate and her chance meeting with World War 1 veteran Billy Donne. Annie lives in the UK, but was born in Norway. Her father left when she was very young and she never sees him. She is a loner in a strange land who doesn't fit in, says the wrong thing, and is generally disliked and misunderstood by her fellow students. Yet as the story unfolds the reader begins to understand where Annie is coming from. How she has had to develop a strong carapace to survive, and I hope they also begin to see another, softer, more empathetic side to her prickly character.

Where did Annie spring from? Looking back at my own life, I am struck by how many similarities we share. I too was an outsider, growing up in the 1960's as the only Jewish girl in a school of 600 christian ones. My parents were refugees from Hitler's Germany. Like Annie I tried to fit in, but never really did. And then there was the inevitable racism and bullying. I underwent many bad life-events as I matured into an adult, but I firmly believe these were what eventually turned me into what I am today: a writer.

So out of our negative experiences we emerge, Annie and I, strong women, our characters forged in the fires of what we have endured. As Annie says: 'I like the idea of being strong. I've grown up with the concept. It's in my bones and my blood. Strong people survive. They weep, but they don't go under. That's how I am.'

‘He had been part of my everyday life. I hadn’t liked him much, nobody had liked him much, but he’d been there. Now, I’d never see him again.’

Annie Skjaerstad had been searching for her identity since being uprooted from her native country of Norway. With a spiky personality winning her no friends, and family members suddenly torn out of her life, she is left seeking comfort from a growing intrigue into the stories of fallen war heroes.

But one day, a boy from her school unexpectedly commits suicide, changing things forever. Confused by the tragic tale of someone she knew, Annie soon finds herself conducting her own investigation into his death.

What she uncovers will bring her to a dark and dangerous place, as suddenly – her own life is put at risk.

A tense, coming of age crime thriller by the author of ‘Dead Man Talking’.

About the Author:
Contact Carol via Twitter: @carolJhedges, via her blog or on Facebook

She is also a member of


  1. Thanks for having me on your fab blog, Tara. I shall try to behave myself!!! Hahahaha.

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  3. So that's where you get the fighting spirit from, Carol. No wonder the politicians tremble.

  4. I love these guest posts. I always learn something I didn't know before. I loved Jigsaw Pieces and its prickly heroine and although we've never met, I'm pretty darn fond of this prickly Hedges lady. Even her hair reminds me of a certain small animal with a similar name and rep :-) Hats off, Carol, on all fronts x

  5. Always interested in any blog with enough sense to ask Carol aboard. My friend and fellow twit is entertaining and in some cases controversial. Those are good things. So thanks!

  6. Now, that's made me think. About me and about this book, which I want to read. Thank you for the post, Carol and Tara. ~Miriam