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Sian Gilbert Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

She Started It (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Sian Gilbert
Sian Gilbert was born in Bristol, UK. She studied history at the University of Warwick, before she taught at a comprehensive school in Birmingham for almost five years.

Sian is a huge history nerd, so her absolute favorite reads are history books, whether these are written by serious historians or guilty pleasure historical fiction. Because of this, she loves visiting historical places. Once she went to Hever Castle (which was Anne Boleyn’s childhood home) specifically to see the Book of Hours which Katherine of Aragon and Boleyn individually owned placed together for the very first time.

During her fifth year of teaching English, her partner was given this fully-funded scholarship to earn a PhD at the University of Cambridge. It meant they had to move, and Sian had a choice to make. Look for another teaching job, or because they were lucky enough to be in college accommodations, take the entire year off and attempt to be a writer like she’d always dreamed. It was terrifying leaving, however December 31, 2020 was her very last day as a teacher, and 2021 was the start of, well she was not sure what would happen. Because she wanted to be hopeful, but she’s really a pessimist at heart.

Sian wrote this one book as a practice run, attempted to query it, and didn’t get anywhere. She read every single craft book out there and joined Twitter, looking to find writing communities. It was there that she learned about Pitch Wars, and she was determined to have a book ready to apply for it. She had this one sentence pitch already in her mind: four bridesmaids, one private island, and this bride that was hellbent on revenge. “Here Comes the Bride” (which is what it was called then) was born, and she drafted it in just three months. She got selected by E. A. Aymar, met the Pitch Wars community, worked on her manuscript, and her whole life changed forever.

She wanted to set “She Started It” in the Bahamas because she knew that she wanted somewhere idyllic, a place that people would automatically associate with luxury and perfect holiday destinations. Sian’s never actually been to the Bahamas herself, so it’s got that added have to get there someday dream to it attainability factor for her. Her characters hailing from the UK like she does, it’s very expensive to travel this far, so it was this added incentive for her bridesmaids to want to go there.

It also feels like the ideal setting for a thriller. A place that is glamorous, yet the private island aspect gives it this isolated edge, with something dark being hidden underneath the beautiful surface.

Her book just has women as its leads characters, which was important to her. It explores female friendships, and how twisted they can become, from being a teen to facing up to the consequences during adulthood. Sian loves a female character that can be bad without question, yet also ones that are difficult and complex that you ultimately end up rooting for.

“She Started It” was a Book of the Month Main Selection, and an Amazon Editors’ Pick for Best Thriller, Mystery, and Suspense.

“She Started It” is the first stand alone novel and was released in 2023. A Caribbean bachelorette party takes a sinister. It’s “And Then There Were None” and “Lord of the Flies”, but with Instagram and way too much prosecco.

The party of a lifetime is nothing at all like what they were expecting.

Tanya, Annabel, Esther, and Chloe are best friends. At least they were, when they were children. Despite the fact they’ve drifted apart in their adulthood, some shared secrets have kept them bonded for better or worse, even while their childhood dreams have not exactly turned out quite like they had hoped. Then this one day they get this totally unexpected, yet not wholly unwelcome, invitation from this other old friend. Poppy Greer has just invited them all to her extravagant bachelorette party, a first class plane ticket to three whole days of cocktails, relaxation, and white sand on a luxe private island down in the Bahamas.

Not a single one of them has spoken to Poppy in years now. However Poppy’s Instagram pictures all show that the girl they once considered to be the weakest link in their group has certainly made good, and made some money. Curiosity gets the better of all of them. Besides, who could possibly turn down an all-expenses-paid vacation on a Caribbean Island?

The first-class flight and the accommodations of the island are exactly as opulent as were promised, even if the island proves to be more remote than they had anticipated. Quite remote, actually, without any other guests and zero cell service. The women soon learn that they have underestimated Poppy, and one another. While their darkest secrets get revealed, this tropical adventure morphs into a horrifying nightmare.

Sharply observant, endlessly twisty, and deliciously catty, this novel is sure to shock readers until the very end.

These bitches are all kinds of fun. They are well executed, unlikable characters. Not a single good apple in the whole bunch. Not only are they bitches, but the sort of bitch friends that you cannot trust with your shoes, let alone anything actually important.

Sian’s writing structure and style are a stroke of genius. Throughout the novel, you get these small ominous drops which are only enough to catch your attention. However, at the same time, they’re restrained enough not to give away what is coming. The book begins with these ominous hints. The sort that once the book is over, you smack yourself since it was right there the entire time, giving each twist validity within the plot. You just couldn’t see it at the time.

Even the island is written like a character, getting an arc of dream destination to a sinister force of mother nature. It’s not just a location, you actually feel its presence throughout. From the dread of being too good to be true to mother nature gone wild.

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