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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

What’s Their Secret? BETSY REAVLEY @BetsyReavley confesses! #HerLastSecret

To celebrate #HerLastSecret going on sale, I’ve asked authors to share their secrets with me… Today it’s BETSY REAVLEY, author of psychological thrillers, including The Optician’s Wife, Frailty and many more.

Betsy Freeman Reavley is the author of the novels Beneath the Watery Moon, Carrion, The Quiet Ones, The Optician’s Wife, Frailty and the poetry collections The Worm in the Bottle and Shadows in the light. Her latest psychological thriller, Frailty, published by Bloodhound Books. She was born in Hammersmith, London. As a child she moved around frequently with her family, spending time in London, Provence, Tuscany, Gloucestershire and Cambridgeshire. She showed a flair for literature and writing from a young age and had a particular interest in poetry, of which she was a prolific consumer and producer. In her early twenties she moved to Oxford, where she would eventually meet her husband. During her time in Oxford her interests turned from poetry to novels and she began to develop her own unique style of psychological thriller. Reavley says “I think people are at their most fascinating when they are faced with life’s real horrors. This is what I love to write about.” Betsy Reavley currently lives in Cambridge, with her husband, 2 children, dog and quail. She is working on her fifth novel.


Secret writing ritual…

I don’t actually have one. I write when I feel the need to and when my children and time permits. When I do get into the zone sometimes it can last for days, other times it is shorter. I try not to pressure myself to write, especially given the publishing business I am helping to run.

Secret writing snack…

Never eat while I’m writing. I puff away furiously at my electric cigarette and rely heavily on copious amounts of coffee though.

Secret celebration when you finish a WIP…

That’s easy – I sit down with my husband and open a bottle of bubbly!

‘Guilty secret’ read…

Again, sorry to disappoint but I don’t think I have one. As a teenager I used to read the cheesy Point Horror novellas from time to time but that’s about it. I rarely read anything other than crime and thrillers and, as a writer and publisher of the genre, I will not confess to them being guilty.

‘Guilty secret’ TV programme…

EastEnders. I have a love hate relationship with the programme but when it’s gripping I am a total sucker and look forward to the next episode with glee.

Shared secret…

Hmm. I have a slightly unhealthy fascination with birds, particularly corvids. I rescued a baby magpie, which I called Pica, the Latin for Magpie. Being in the company of such an intelligent creature was a real honour and only exacerbated my captivation. Sadly the young bird did not make it to adulthood. I cried for a week.

Secret peek into your new WIP…

Leading on from the last question, my current WIP, which is coming along particularly slowly, is called Only Birds Sing. The story follows a killer who has an obsession with birds. Well, they say it’s always best to write about what you know… and I’m referring to the obsession with birds, of course.

Secret Santa… (If you could give a happy ending to any character who would it be, and what would you do?)

If I could give a happy ending to a character it would be Miss Haversham from the Dickens’ novel Great Expectations. She was a miserable, bitter, heartbroken woman. I always felt so sorry for her. All she wanted was love. That is something every person should have in life, whatever form it may take. If I had to rewrite it I’d have the man who left her at the aisle reappear in her life, beg her forgiveness and whisk her off into the sunset, long before she ends up burning to death in a fire.


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HER LAST SECRET is out on Friday 13th October. Lucky for you – unlucky for the Thomas family…

To pre-order or find our more, use the links below.





There are some secrets you can never tell.

The last thing to go through Dominique Thomas’s head was the image of her teenage daughter’s face and her heart lifted. Then the shot rang out.

They were the perfect family. Successful businessman Ben Thomas and his wife Dominique live an enviable life, along with their beautiful children; teenager Ruby and quirky younger daughter, Mouse.

But on Christmas Day the police are called to their London home, only to discover a horrific scene; the entire family lying lifeless, victims of an unknown assailant.

But when Ruby’s diary is discovered, revealing her rage at the world around her, police are forced to look closer to home for the key to this tragedy.

Each family member harboured their own dark truths – but has keeping their secrets pushed Ruby to the edge of sanity? Or are there darker forces at work?

This dark, gripping psychological thriller will have you holding your breath until the very last page. Fans of Behind Closed Doors, Sometimes I Lie, and The Girl on the Train will be captivated.

See what readers are saying about Her Last Secret:

‘OH MY WORD! This is a fantastic read!… I was totally immersed in the Thomas family’s story… Outstanding, I highly recommend!’ Chat About Books

‘Absolutely superb, she’s only gone and done it again – did NOT want to put this book down!!’ Donna’s Book Blog

‘I absolutely loved this well-written emotional rollercoaster, the twists in the story keep you hooked, trying to work out what happened that night. Highly recommended.’ Nicki’s Life of Crime

‘Wow what a fantastic book, totally thrilling and captivating! A tangled web of lies and secrets is masterfully woven in this psychological thriller…I was hooked right from page one…a big fat 5 stars from me, I totally recommend this book.’ Bonnie’s Book Talk

‘This is one hell of an engaging read…I am blown away. I cannot recommend this enough; it is without a doubt a must-read book. Giving it a massive 5 stars.’ Chelle’s Book Reviews

Praise for Barbara Copperthwaite:

‘It grips you by the throat and doesn’t let go. A tense, edge-of-your-seat, nail-biting ride’Robert Bryndza, author of The Girl in the Ice and Cold Blood

‘Vividly written and absolutely gripping. I couldn’t put it down!’ The Genre Reader (5 stars)

‘There are plenty of twists and turns that will keep you guessing, leading all the way to a jaw-dropping ending that left me spinning.’ Novel Deelights (5 stars)

‘Gripping and shocking. Had me completely enthralled in the action…a story that got under my skin.’ Rachel’s Random Reads (5 stars)

‘A dark, compelling and unforgettable read that had me hooked. The final paragraph haunted me, long after I had finished reading.’ Brew and Books review (5 stars)

‘Addictive, Thrilling, Captivating! I could not put this book down, it captures your interest from the very first page until the very last.’ Book Reviews by Nicole (5 stars)

‘It really did make for some very emotional reading…There was a twist which totally rocked me.’ By The Letter Book Reviews

‘Plenty of red herrings and twists…If you like psychological thrillers, you’ll love it.’ Consumer reviewer (5 stars)

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