What constitutes identity?

For all its historical setting, Walls of Silence is a book exploring a very current reality. Because here’s the thing: every time we succumb to posting a lie or an exaggeration about ourselves on social media we fudge ourselves a little. Blur the edges. Alter reality. But what if that false you ended up becoming you? How would you ever realise you had morphed into a construct of your own imagination?

Everyone has multiple facets to their personality and we all have a few highly-polished ones we can call on to enable a smooth transition from one of our life roles to another. If you doubt this then think about whether you wear the same clothes, use the same words or language, talk about the same things, act in the same way, tell the same jokes when you are with . . . your work colleagues / family / old school mates / new boss / friends’ children / strangers / a hated rival / lifelong heroes / love of your life (and here I’ve only scratched the surface of examples). All of us take some care over how we present ourselves to the world but this activity presupposes we have a central sense of self that we can radiate out from, and return to. Without that we are just an illusion, a tissue of fabrication. And, consequently, what could we cling onto once the inevitable happened and that false reality began to disintegrate?

I hope your brief time inside the head of Edith Potter, the protagonist and victim of Walls of Silence, has not been too unsettling . . .

You may also be interested in Ruth Wade’s Rhythms in Crime Dance Quartet) or for crime set in 1920’s London, try the May Keaps series by BK Duncan.

Posts

Shell-shock: 1914-18 conflict

I’d always had a horrified fascination

Continue reading

Leap of faith

I want to be the best writer I can possibly be 

Continue reading

The past in the present

All my novels have been set in the 1920s.

Continue reading

Some books you just have to grow into

Walls of Silence is the novel that wouldn’t let me alone.

Continue reading

The melting pot

As a writer, not all influences are easy to identify.

Continue reading