Detective Ryan Boone thought the simple jewelry heist was an open-and-shut case. That is until he discovers an unknown drug, and this minor crime he was investigating may be tied to a string of seemingly unconnected murders.
Meanwhile, Mel Parker, unscrupulous leader of a less-than-legal high-end escort service, stumbles across the same pills. On top of protecting her “investment,” she has her own reasons for attempting to unravel the mystery behind the medication.
Ryan knows someone has the answers he seeks, and Mel can’t come forward. To complicate things further, five other women are implicated in the murders despite most having never met.
As the trail turns up as many mysteries as resolutions, Ryan and Mel must discover the twisted connection before someone else ends up dead.
Read on for an interview with Maggie Giles, author of Twisted.
Q: You describe Twisted as a spin on an old theme—can you talk more about that?
A: Without giving too much away, the idea of Twisted is something that has been used in various thriller/suspense novels and TV. When I first started writing the book, I had a solid idea of what I wanted to accomplish. Through various critique partners and beta readers, we tied in the idea of this mysterious medication to help explain some of the more wild things that occur in Twisted. This idea of mental health has always fascinated me so it was natural I fell into writing a story around it. An old Mary Higgins Clark book was the original thing that sparked my interest in this theme.
Q: What inspired you to write the book?
A: I was inspired by two of my best friends, who hold the place of my Real Life Jackie and Candy. One had suggested I start a story about the three of us as other people, which sparked the characters, Mel, Jackie and Candy. It started as a sexy story about three women just having fun, and evolved from there. While through story development and growth, the characters no longer resemble myself and my two friends, it was a great starting point for the book. The idea of mental health tied in a bit later before I fully knew where I was taking the story. In fact, the original story started about halfway through. It has definitely been something that has developed over the years and with the support of critique partners and beta readers.
Q: Why is this book important to you personally?
A: This book is the third book I ever wrote, so it’s been in my heart for a long time. I feel a very vivid connection to the characters (and absolutely love Ryan Boone), but I also feel it explores a different side of crime and mental health. It really asks the question of how much are we responsible for when we aren’t fully in the right mind? I’m excited to see how readers receive it.
Q: What parts of the book did you find most difficult to write? Which did you most enjoy?
A: My favorite part was definitely adding in Ryan’s awkward humor. When Rising Action first acquired the book, I’m embarrassed to say that while I loved Ryan, he was a bit bland. We discussed how to make him more memorable and not being a particularly comedic writer, I found the awkward dad jokes hilarious to add.
The hardest part for me was definitely some of the intense trauma that Brielle goes through. She was such a tragic character that I really struggled to make her suffer more than she already had.
Q: What do you hope readers gain from reading the book?
A: First and foremost, I hope readers are entertained, taken on a journey they didn’t expect and left guessing until the very end. I hope readers connect with my characters and are excited to find out more about Blaine in the upcoming release Wicked. And I hope that it makes them question the stigma around certain mental health diagnoses.
Q: What are you working on next?
A: At Rising Action we are working on Wicked, which will be a fall 2024 release. It is a companion piece to Twisted and picks up where it ended, allowing some more screen time to my favorite detective and another character I love, Blaine. Personally I am working on a story currently titled No One Knows. It follows two best friends who have to keep each other’s deadly secrets. I think it will really appeal to fans of We Were Never Here by Andrea Bartz and allows readers a look at the birth of a serial killer.
Maggie Giles is a Canadian author who enjoys creating new connections and experiencing new opportunities. Her writing interests span across a variety of genres, but her favorite is women’s fiction with thriller elements. While backpacking through Europe, she developed an interest in writing and began writing historical fictions from the Tudor era in England. She is an avid participant of Scribophile, an online writing community for serious writers, as well as a member of the Women’s Fiction Writers Association where she has worked as their Social Media Director Since June 2014. She’s slightly addicted to social media.
If she’s not writing, Giles is usually bogged down with some other creative project. She has a love for knitting and sewing as well as cooking up a storm. If you venture outside, you’ll find her at the barn cuddling the horses (and probably riding them too) or hiking up the hill. If she had the money, she’d spend the rest of her life traveling the world, staying in AirBnBs and writing about her adventures (always with a twist!). For more, visit maggiegiles.com.