Wednesday, 7 June 2017

The Swedish Influence || When I Wake Up Blog Tour

I have lived in various countries but growing up in Sweden had a profound impact on me and therefore, setting When I Wake Up in my home country felt like an easy choice. Sweden is amazing with its four seasons. Summertime is synonymous with lush green fields and fresh air; it never really gets dark at night and everything comes alive. Autumn is colourful but wet and wintertime is clouded in a chilling darkness.

People love to be outside all year round when the sun shines. My mother would always tell me to go outside: ‘the sun is shining, Jessica!’ But it meant abandoning whatever book I was reading…
Growing up in a small town, I would read about the world until I could discover it for myself. That’s where my passion for literature began and I often found myself in the local library, so it’s no surprise that a library features in my novel.

I go back to Sweden regularly, to visit friends and family, and it was during one of those visits that a seed was planted for When I Wake Up. It was springtime; still chilly but flowers were emerging everywhere, sprinkling the air with optimism. I went to see a friend one afternoon. The sky was a cloud-less blue but by the time I made to leave, I found the town submerged in darkness even though it wasn’t late. It felt eerie.

All the shops were closed, there were no people or cars around, and the lights in the houses were gradually switching off. The place felt so utterly deserted and  because it felt so spooky, I started running back to my car, which was parked in the town centre. My heart was beating fast in my chest, my throat hurting from the cold.

That’s when my brain kicked into action and the author in me started creating various scenarios, one of them being: ‘if someone was attacked now, there would be no witnesses’. That’s how Anna’s attack came about. It made me realise that all the action doesn’t have to be set in a city. In fact, the mystery would be more effective in a small town where everyone thinks they know each other.

Writing the novel, I really enjoyed recreating an environment similar to the one where I grew up, generously adding fictional elements to suit the story. Although I have spent years living abroad, in my heart, Sweden is still my home and I definitely plan to write more novels that are set there.

By Jessica Jarlvi, author of When I Wake Up

Author bio

Born in Sweden, Jessica moved to London at the age of 18 to obtain a BSc Hons degree in Publishing and Business. She worked in publishing in the UK for a number of years before heading to Chicago where she edited a magazine for expats. Back in Sweden, she completed a Masters in Creative Writing. Since 2010, Jessica has taught journalism and media at a local university, and has spent the last five years as the marketing and PR manager for a British firm. Last year, she was one of the winners in the Montegrappa Prize for First Fiction at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature. Jessica is married with three spirited children, and although she's known for her positivity, her writing tends to be rather dark!

Follow Jessica

Facebook: @JessicaJarlvi
Twitter: @JessicaJarlvi

Book description

A breathtaking, heart-pounding, dark debut, sure to delight fans of The Girl on the Train and Before I Go To Sleep.

When Anna, a much-loved teacher and mother of two, is left savagely beaten and in a coma, a police investigation is launched. News of the attack sends shock waves through her family and their small Swedish community. Anna seems to have had no enemies, so who wanted her dead?
As loved-ones wait anxiously by her bedside, her husband Erik is determined to get to the bottom of the attack, and soon begins uncovering his wife's secret life, and a small town riven with desire, betrayal and jealousy. 
As the list of suspects grows longer, it soon becomes clear that only one person can reveal the truth, and she's lying silent in a hospital bed...

Buy links

Google Play:

Follow Aria

Facebook: @ariafiction
Twitter: @aria_fiction
Instagram: @ariafiction
Sign up to the Aria newsletter:

Keep up with my latest posts by following me and subscribing to my newsletter!

Get all the latest with my newsletter

* indicates required

June Advertisers

Post a comment