Woohoo! Thrilled to be hosting Jaime Raven’s THE REBEL blog tour today and I have one hell of a kickass guest post from Jaime to share! First though, how about a bit on this author and the book!
About the Author
Jaime Raven lives in Southampton, UK and writes full time. The author is a former newspaper and television journalist and spent many years covering crime stories in and around London.
Jaime is also the author of The Madam and The Alibi.
About the Book
Sometimes you have to take the law into your own hands…
DI Laura Jefferson will do whatever it takes to bring down London’s most notorious crime boss. When her team receive a deadly threat – stop their investigation or the police and their families will be targeted – but they aren’t willing to back down…
Then the killings begin.
A new body is turns up every day, and with no leads, Laura knows she has to take action. Her family is innocent and she’ll stop at nothing to protect them.
When someone close to her is hurt, she’ll break every rule in the book to get vengeance.
BY JAIME RAVEN
AUTHOR OF THE REBEL
THE MAKING OF A MONSTER
Her name is Rosa Lopez. She’s 28, single and extremely attractive.
Her home is in Mexico but she travels the world in her capacity as a hired killer. And she’s very good at what she does. So far she’s claimed no less than fifty lives.
But don’t worry because Rosa isn’t real. She’s a figment of my imagination and one of the main characters in my new book, The Rebel.
When I was invited to write this guest post I was told that I could choose any subject. So I’ve decided to explain how and why Rosa Lopez, the monster from Mexico, came into being.
It all started a couple of years ago when I read a newspaper story about a journalist who’d been assassinated in Mexico by someone working for one of the infamous drug cartels. It piqued my interest and prompted me to do some research into the extent of violence in the Latin American country.
What I discovered shocked me – and I’ve since learned that the situation there is getting much worse. In 2017 there were over 25,000 murders in Mexico – a jump of 23% on the previous year. Most of them were drug-related and carried out by contract killers employed by the cartels. These guys are apparently the most prolific murderers on the planet.
Well it gave me the idea for a book in which one of these ruthless assassins comes to London to wreak havoc on behalf of a notorious gangster.
I quickly came up with a storyline and pitched it to my editor at Avon/Harper Collins. She liked the idea but said she thought the killer should be a woman.
I wasted no time surfing the internet again, this time in search of female contract killers. I expected to find that there were very few – after all it seems like the kind of profession that would be male dominated.
But I was wrong. It turns out that there are hundreds of bloodthirsty women who are working as killers for the cartels. They’re known as Sicarias (assassins) and they ply their trade in return for large amounts of cash.
As soon as I learned about these women Rosa Lopez began to take shape in my head. I loosely based her on a real life Sicaria named Jimenez Lopez, whose nickname is La Tosca (The Tough One.)
She was one of the country’s most feared assassins, with more than twenty murders to her name, before her capture in 2011.
However, I wanted Rosa to be more than just a killing machine. She needed to have a convincing back story for one thing. And I wanted to create a situation where readers might actually warm to her despite the fact that she’s a cold-blooded psychopath.
So I asked myself why Rosa became a killer. And the answer lies in her childhood. I don’t want to give too much away so suffice to say that bad things happened to her when she was a little girl.
Next I thought about how she might grow and change during the story. Should she have a softer side? Does she have at least some redeeming qualities? Can a psychopathic killer be in any way likeable?
I eventually decided to create a love interest. But what I didn’t realise until I started writing was how this element of the story would take on a life of its own and become a major theme throughout the novel.
I feel that it not only ramps up the tension, but it also makes Rosa far more than just a two-dimensional criminal character.
The Rebel is my fourth book for Avon. The others are The Madam, The Alibi and The Mother. They all feature characters who are colourful, cruel, likeable and detestable.
But for me there’s something special about Rosa Lopez which I believe makes her stand out from the rest. I do hope readers agree that the time spent creating this particular monster was time well spent.
What did I tell you? KICKASS guest post! Thanks so much to Jaime and Sabah Khan for organising and inviting me to be a part of this blog tour! Keep up with all the reviews and posts by following the tour!