Saturday, February 13, 2016

In the Spotlight: Angelica Miles

by Lorraine Bartlett / Lorna Barrett / L.L. Bartlett

When I was contracted to write the Booktown Mysteries, there was no mention of "Pat" Miles having a sister. I soon knew that I didn't want to write about Pat ... but I did want to write about her doppelganger, Tricia Miles. And I didn't get very far into the story before a shorter, rude, interloper showed up on the scene. A woman Tricia disliked intensely:  her sister, Angelica.

Angelica's name was perfect, for in their parents' eyes, she could do no wrong. However, to Tricia, she was just this much older (five years), insanely BOSSY person who made growing up a living hell.

Tricia didn't know her sister, but I did.  Not that I ever had a sister to draw on for reference. Nope, I had two brothers, and I'm a middle kid. But I'd had friends with older sisters. Sisters who'd grown up together but were not friends. Older sisters who tormented their younger sisters--just because they could. But oddly enough, these sisters all became fiercely loyal upon reaching adulthood; who became each other's best friends.

That's what I wanted for Tricia.

But I couldn't do it all in one book. I planted the seeds of a fierce friendship, but it couldn't happen in one book--or even two or three. It took Tricia and Angelica nearly five years to find their common ground and eight books before the sisters' lives really meshed.

Many readers were impatient with Angelica, saying that she was a one-dimensional character. That they had a sister just like her and therefore couldn't stand her. And yet, I got many, many, MANY emails from readers who also said they had the same sister--and that their relationship was closer than any friendship they'd ever experienced.

Angelica had a master plan ... (as you'll see at the bottom of her list of things to do on the left), but she wasn't about to spill it to Tricia. Tricia is a sleuth ... Angelica was content to let Tricia investigate the way she ticked--and it turned out Angelica has all the patience in the world.

But that's not the end of the story, either.

In Title Wave (which will be released on June 14th), the sisters finally get to lay to rest some of the problems of the past. But of course, I couldn't leave it at that. There's a cliffhanger ...  What's really odd is that I have no idea what will happen next ... at least, not until Tricia and Angelica tell me.

COMING SOON:  The Cozy Chicks will be hosting a number of online talks about our various series.  First up:  The Booktown Mysteries, where we'll be discussing the first book in the series, Murder Is Binding.

If you haven't joined our Facebook Group, where you'll hear from the Chicks every day of the week, and we discuss all kinds of cool stuff), just click this link.