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Alison Bruce Sixty seconds with Alison Bruce...


Alison Bruce was born in Surrey in 1966 and moved to Cambridge in 1998. She learnt about Cambridge and East Anglia from researching her two non-fiction books, Cambridgeshire Murders and The Billingtons, Death in the Family (both published by Sutton Publishing). Her crime series features DC Gary Goodhew. She is married with two small children and when not writing she enjoys horse riding and dancing
RTE: Describe yourself in a sentence?

Bruce: Mostly laid back and usually patient, but with a slight tendency towards murder.

RTE: What's the one record you'd take to a desert island?

Bruce: Thatís a tricky question, Iím a huge fan of 1950s music, particularly doo-wop, Elvis and Roy Orbison. My husband, Jacen, is a singer songwriter, heís written songs for me and weíve written songs together but I think my final choice will have to be his song, Honey in Honolulu, recorded by our daughter Lana. She was 11 when she released it, itís there on iTunes so I think that counts!

RTE: What did you want to be when you were growing up?

Bruce: A pathologist. Then a teacher asked me and they visibly recoiled when I told them. I think I was about ten at the time, definitely still at primary school, and after that I stayed fascinated with the idea, just less willing to share it.

RTE: Who's your oldest friend?

Bruce: Alison Hilborne, we became friends when we both moved to a new school at the age of 14, we were so close that when we started work the school mixed up our references. She lives about 150 miles away, sometimes we donít talk for months but sheís totally irreplaceable.

RTE: If I ruled the world...

Bruce: We use up three times the resources that the world produces each year, every time I see this statistic Iím reminded of the Easter Island Moai. Look what happened there. There doesnít seem much point in ruling the world if itís trashed, so Iíd tackle that one first. One of my ancestors is Jeremy Bentham and, to me many of his views on politics and social reform make a great deal of sense today. He also pulls off a great skeleton-in-the-cupboard act. Iím a fan.

RTE: Which book do you wish you'd written?

Bruce: My next one. There is no book I every wish Iíd written as much as the one Iím working on. How can it take SO long to write something that can be read so swiftly?

RTE: What makes you angry?

Bruce: Spite and lies. People who hurt my family. Drivers who tailgate.

RTE: Name your five dream dinner party guests.

Bruce: Patrick Jane (The Mentalist) and four no-shows OR Patrick Jane, Elvis, Uncle Jeremy and Jacen, who needs to be there so we can talk about it afterwards.


RTE: Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with?

Bruce: Thinking as a writer then there are hugely interesting research possibilities here, but no one with a deadly contagious disease please.

RTE: What inspired you to start writing?

Bruce: Iíve always written bits and pieces, I was a very shy child and writing felt like a more comfortable way of expressing thoughts and ideas because it didnít matter if I was hesitant and I could make sure that Iíd said exactly what was intended before I shared it. As for being inspired to write crime, I was on the way to work and thought of a way to murder someone that I hadnít seen in anyone elseís book. (I guess I wasnít enjoying my job at the time).

RTE: Where would you most like to live?

Bruce: We live near Cambridge and itís fantastic here, but we are also in love with Hawaii. I think Iíd need to try Hawaii for a while before I make a final choice.

RTE: Sum up your latest book in no more than 12 words.

Bruce: Illness, depression, accident, suicide. Theyíre connectedÖ and it isnít over.


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