Today, I’m delighted to be hosting the next stop on the Blog Tour for Close To Home by Cara Hunter, published by Penguin Random House and a Richard and Judy Book Club Pick. Following on from another popular Q&A I’ve done with a character from a crime novel, I have interviewed the main protagonist from Close To Home, DI Adam Fawley who is a new series character I thought we could all be introduced to.
First up is the blurb:
How can a child go missing without a trace?
Last night, eight-year-old Daisy Mason disappeared from a family party. No one in the quiet suburban street saw anything – or at least that’s what they’re saying.
DI Adam Fawley is trying to keep an open mind. But he knows that nine times out of ten, it’s someone the victim knew.
That means someone is lying…
And that Daisy’s time is running out.
Location: A cafe, around the corner from the police station, Oxford
Interviewer: Rachel Emms, (RE), Reporter.
Interviewee: DI Adam Fawley, (AF), Detective Inspector part of Thames Valley CID in Oxford.
RE: Thanks for meeting with me Adam, can I call you that?
AF: No problem. Most people do.
RE [I flip open my notebook with my pen poised. I hope to get some scoop from the detective which my editor will be able to run with.] What was your first thought when you found out Daisy Mason was missing? Surely you see it all the time.
AF: We see more of it than we want to, but however often you’ve handled a missing child case it’s always tough. Perhaps the toughest job any police officer ever does.
RE: How long exactly have you worked for Thames Valley?
AF: Nearly twenty years now. I was a DS here for a while, then an inspector in uniform before coming back to CID.
RE: There’s been a lot of talk and speculation on social media about the case with Daisy. Do you find this helpful? Surely any information is good for the investigation?
AF: Yes and no, to be honest. Of course we need all the help we can get and the more people who are out looking for Daisy the better. The public can be invaluable eyes and ears on the ground. But unfounded speculation is not helpful, neither to us or the family. It makes our job harder and it can mean I get side-tracked answering questions when I should be putting all my efforts into the investigation. I’m sure none of us wants that.
RE [I lean forward.] I believe your team put out the call on Twitter for help. Do you think then that modern policing is now redundant and we can do the work for you online?
Like I said, there are some things about social media that are a genuine help to the police, and I’ve worked on cases where we got real breakthroughs that way. But there’s a definite downside. I’m very concerned we may see the Mason family targeted online. That sort of thing is intrusive and it’s ill-informed. I’m afraid that in a case like this people are very quick to judge, and they need to think very carefully before they say anything at all on social media. Just because you’re in the virtual world doesn’t mean there won’t be repercussions in the real one.
RE: Would you say you trust everyone on your team?
AF: Of course. They wouldn’t be on it if I didn’t.
RE [maybe I can use his personal life as an angle…] What’s your family life like? Didn’t you have a child of you own who died –
AF [Adam folds his arms across his chest.] That’s not something I’m prepared to discuss. My private life is of no relevance to this investigation.
RE [Maybe not then. I change tact.] How do you think the tights got there? Is the blood really Daisy Mason’s?
AF: The item you mention is being analysed by our forensics team as we speak. They will determine whether the blood is Daisy’s. And depending what they say, we will take the investigation in the appropriate direction.
RE: Finally, do you have any new suspects/leads? Surely it must’ve been someone from the party?
AF [Adam checks his watch.] Our first priority is to establish exactly when Daisy was last seen and by whom. Clearly that involves interviewing everyone who was at the party, and collecting any phone or video footage they might have. That’s taking some time, as you can imagine. But in the meantime we have a huge team out searching the area, and if anyone has any information at all – even something that might appear to be insignificant – please contact Thames Valley CID straightaway. I really can’t emphasise that enough.
[Adam Fawley gets up and shakes my hand]
RE: Thanks very much for meeting with me Adam.
[He nods before exiting the cafe which is just beginning to fill up.] What the hell am I going to show my editor?
Interested to discover more about DI Adam Fawley and what happened to Daisy Mason? I know I am.
Big thanks to Cara Hunter for answering my questions and to Poppy North for my ARC and for inviting me to be a part of this blog tour.
About the Author:
Cara Hunter is a writer who lives in Oxford, in a street not unlike those featured in her series of crime books. Close to Home is her debut featuring DI Adam Fawley, and her second, In the Dark, is coming soon.
To find out more about Cara Hunter, follow her on twitter @.
Don’t forget to check out the other stops on this fab blog tour!