Thursday, 26 February 2015

Too Dark to Sleep by Dianne Gallagher: Interview + Giveaway

Too Dark to Sleep
by Dianne Gallagher 
Time to wake up…

Maggie Quinn was the top homicide detective in Chicago's Area One before she suffered a devastating loss. Now Quinn is damaged… perhaps beyond repair. Once the best detective in Chicago, she is haunted by dreams of a faceless man she could never catch. When the killer returns, Quinn agrees to serve as a consultant, but most cops in Area One tag her as a hazard. Except rookie detective Nick Dublowski who quickly realizes the only way the Chicago Police will catch this elusive killer is with the help of Maggie Quinn.

Back on the job, Quinn becomes as tenacious and sharp as ever. But as the investigation closes in on a suspect, the escalating murders hit dangerously close to home. Quinn’s sanity again begins to fray and her judgment is questioned. Did the suspect really do it? Or is Maggie’s tormented mind pushing her to ruin the life of an innocent man?

Avid readers of crime fiction, noir or psychological thrillers will find Too Dark to Sleep a fresh take on their favorite genre. This is the first book in a gripping new series and not to be missed.

Paperback, 390 pages
Published November 19th 2012 by Brayer Publishing, LLC

Find it on Goodreads
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iTunes      Kobo      Barnes and Noble      !ndigo Books      Powell's Books

Readers agree Too Dark to Sleep is not to be missed. 
“Too Dark to Sleep is a brilliant, well-written novel... Maggie Quinn is an incredible main character, multifaceted and strong despite setback after setback… This riveting story tells of Maggie's battles with a brilliant "bad guy" and with the darkness that threatens her after her breakdown. The suspense in this story is first-rate from its opening pages to the story's conclusion and makes Too Dark to Sleep a spine-tingling book that readers everywhere will adore.” – Alice DiNizo, Readers Favorite (5 Stars) 

“In the vein of Jeffrey Deaver thrillers, Dianne Gallagher’s Maggie Quinn will draw you in and have you following her every move as she desperately battles her own demons while trying to outmaneuver a mind-game-playing killer.”  

“Good, gritty fun… A smart story and thoroughly enjoyable read that grabs you from the get-go and doesn’t let go.”  

“Looking forward to the next. I’m anxious to see where the author takes Maggie.”

Life is Never a Straight Line

Growing up in rural Minnesota, Dianne attended the University of Minnesota where she got a BFA in Theatre. Although her initial interest was in performance, Dianne eventually focused on playwriting and had competition-winning scripts performed at that school.

After moving to Los Angeles so her husband could attend film school, Dianne switched focus to screenplays. While writing her own spec material, Dianne formatted, edited, critiqued and wrote independent scripts. While in Los Angeles, she was approached by writer Karen Hall and asked to edit and mentor a young writer Hall discovered while doing research on death row inmates. The professional relationship which lasted several years gave Dianne a unique look into the prison system and into the individuals sitting on death row.

A move to the Chicago area translated into a new focus on novels as well as a love for the big-shouldered city. Dianne edited, critiqued and ghosted a variety of fiction and nonfiction pieces while having great fun with her family. As projects she worked on were placed with agencies like Writers House, Dianne decided to start writing for herself. The result is the debut novel, Too Dark to Sleep.


Q & A with Dianne Gallagher

Q:  Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
Maggie Quinn is one of those characters I can put anywhere and the scene kind of writes itself. She's clever... which is always fun. And she's capable of doing anything if it gets her closer to her goal. On top of that, Quinn is pretty damaged. She starts the book at a very low point in her life. She's basically lost everything that defined her and now Quinn has to put things together so she can function. Make it through the day. Then making it through the day becomes solving a crime. Facing what she's most afraid of. She's dark. She's very unpredictable. But she has that bit of humanity readers can connect to. And even if you don't completely agree with all her methods, you'll still want her to win. Still want her to walk away whole. 

  I honestly look forward to writing Quinn and miss her when I'm working on other projects. Weird, but true. After my next book is done, I can hardly wait to start on the second book in her series. She's got an interesting arc to follow which makes working with her a lot of fun.

Q:  In your opinion, what makes a good, strong female character?
I guess I always think of this one from a writer's point of view. Never write her as a female. Write her as a person. A lot of the other things tie into Quinn's description. Smart. Capable. Truly multi-dimensional. And don't define her by her relationships with guys or her sex life. That doesn't mean that she hates guys or never has sex... but there's more to her than that. She should stand on her own two feet and be a serious force. And she should fall, so we can see her pick herself up.

See what that process looks like... because that's how we really get to know her. How we see what she's truly made of. And don't saddle her with limitations tied to stereotypes. Everyone's always more interesting if they are capable of doing anything. She doesn't have to(and shouldn't) win all the time, but she should always be capable of winning. And personally, I love to see her kick a little ass sometimes.

 Q:  What is the best advice you have been given?  
A:  "Screw everyone and just write." I think you lose the minute you start writing for other people. You'll never make them happy and you'll be saddled with a story you don't really care about. Write what you want to write. Oh, and don't give up. Persistence gets you there even more than talent. 

Q:  As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?  
A:  For the longest time, I wanted to be an archeologist. Then I got into acting. Then writing. But, yeah, digging in the dirt for bones was very appealing. If I could be anything now (other than a writer), I would like to try my hand as a homicide detective.   

Q:  If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
A:  New Zealand. Mostly because of Lord of the Rings. I'm a huge fan and would love to see some of those locations. Plus, I hear it's beautiful and unique. Two things that make it immediately attractive. 

Q:  If you could have any superpower, what would you choose?  
A:  Hard one. There's several I'd like. Don't want immortality because I don't think anyone should live forever. Mind reading would make you miserable. Flying would be cool, but I think I'd go for invisibility or healing powers. 

Q:  Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks? 
A:  I love turning pages, so my initial response is paperback or hardcover. But to be really honest, I kind of love being able to take carry my library with me. So when I'm home, I'll go paperback/hardcover when possible... but if I'm away, it's the e-reader.

 Q:  What book are you reading now? 
A:  Two, actually. I'm trying to finish a The Believing Brain by Michael Shermer. My current project is heavy neuroscience and psychology... so that one caught my eye. I was kind of turned off for a bit because Shermer can come off as pompous and there's a lot of his personal back story I could do without. I'm there for the science of it.  

For fun, someone recommended Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series. I wanted something fun and completely unrelated to what I'm writing and that fits right in. Oddly, I never read in my genre and I don't usually read fantasy, but Storm Front is a really good read.


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