Chris Mooney Q&A
What made you want to bring in Darby to solve a crime that featured in a previous book of yours?
Two things happened. The first was a pretty innocuous thought about thinking of the case of the missing girls in the previous book, how the police handled it and, in some cases, botched the investigation. That creative voice in my head said, “If Darby was on that case, none of that stuff would have happened. She wouldn’t be able to rest until she found justice.”
The second thing was this villain I had in mind – a priest. Writers daydream about scenes, some of which work, some of which will never see the light of day. But my imagination kept turning back to this priest, who is the single most interesting villain I’ve created to date. I couldn’t let go of him for some reasons, and over time, I discovered what he wanted from Darby, how he was going to manipulate her and others, and the story took hold to the point where I had to write it because the idea was too strong.
How did you feel Darby could to add the story? With her presence, how did it change your original story?
The original story was from the point of view of the father of the missing girl. I wanted to retain that while also changing a lot of things in the book I didn’t like. By adding Darby, the reader gets to see how she goes about handling the case while also see the story from the father’s point of view. The reader gets two emotional – and two equally terrifying – stories in the course of the book.
What plans do you have for Darby's character in future books? Are you writing a new book now?
I’m not writing a new Darby book at the moment, as I’m finishing up a couple of other projects. That said, I always outline two, maybe three books ahead, so I have plenty of ideas. I enjoy writing about her quite a bit. As long as readers want Darby, I’ll keep writing them. But a lot of that is up to my publisher, so we’ll see.