#Interview – What Was Lost by Jean Levy @JeanELevy @DomePress #Fiction #booktalk #Books #Bookblog

💫 Welcome to Love Books Group Blog

Today I have an author interview special with the author of What Was Lost, Jean Levy. It is out now in all formats. It’s currently on offer for 99p on Kindle.

💫 What Was Lost by Jean Levy

Back of the Book

How would you live if you had no memories? And what if you were suspected of a terrible crime?

Sarah has no memories. She just knows she was found, near death, on a beach miles from her London home. Now she is part of a medical experiment to see whether her past can be retrieved.

But bad things seemed to have happened before she disappeared. The police are interested in her hidden memories too. A nice man she meets in the supermarket appears to have her best interests at heart. He seems to understand her – almost as if he knows her…

As she fights to regain her memories and her sense of self, it is clear that people are hiding things from her. Who are they protecting? Does Sarah really want the truth?

About the Author 

I started out as a humble botanist, received my first Doctorate and, for a few years, researched and lectured in viral oncology. Then I abandoned the laboratory bench, moved to Holland and worked as a Science Editor. After a while, I came back to the UK and wrote and edited for biotech and pharmaceutical companies, during which time I gained a Masters in Philosophy, a Doctorate in Law and campaigned to save the planet. When my agent retired, I experienced a career crisis, decided to stop writing academic stuff and returned to university to study English. I immediately realised that I should have started writing fiction a long time ago. However, being an obsessional degree taker, I acquired a Masters in Creative Writing and plodded my way towards a Doctorate in Linguistics but I did manage to write a few stories, mostly science based, along the way. I won the British Fantasy Society’s short story competition in 2014 but then I decided to abandon SciFi/Fantasy and write psychological thrillers. My debut novel, What Was Lost was published in September 2018. So, after all that, I would still like to save the planet although, in the last few months, my time has been taken up with writing my second novel. So, yet again, I’ve postponed planet saving. And, of course, I still love plants.

Can you tell us a little bit about your book?

Sarah is a successful children’s author, who has forgotten how to write. In fact, she has forgotten her entire adult life. Some terrible event, which left her lying, unconscious, on a frozen shoreline, miles from home, has caused her Mind to conceal her past. But without her past she is lost, unable to write, waiting. Her only hope is to remember what happened on that cold winter day just a few months ago. But her physicians fear that a sudden influx of information might cause further repression, possibly psychosis. So, Sarah is returned to her London flat and lives a solitary and monitored life, adrift in an adult world and informed only by her faded memories of childhood. Reminders of her previous life have been removed. Her friends have been told to stay away. Her only visitors are her social worker, her cleaner and a cat. Leaving her house invariably causes panic attacks. And then one day in a supermarket, she meets Matthew. With her childhood experiences and her adult physiology, Sarah encourages their relationship and, with his support, she tries to recover her life. But some of her minders disapprove of his interference. And the more she tries to remember, the more she is troubled by a child’s laughter echoing down through her lost time. Slowly, as Sarah’s past is revealed and strange truths emerge, it becomes clear that, in Sarah’s case, some things are best left forgotten.

Who would your book be perfect for?

Fans of psychological thrillers. Those that enjoy a mystery based upon trauma, lost memories, romance and dysfunctional human relationships … so, those readers that enjoyed The Girl On The Train, Gone Girl, Before I Go To Sleep. From the feedback I’ve received, a lot of readers have enjoyed the way in which Matthew and Sarah’s relationship develops, some to the point of obsession, so perhaps readers who appreciate a traumatic romance.

Did you have a favourite character to write?

I ought to say Sarah, because she is the main protagonist and I worked hard on her character, but I loved writing Matthew: a flawed but sincere womanizer who cares about children’s books. I also amused myself writing Annabelle’s character because she was utterly chaotic.

What inspired you to write the book?

What Was Lost began as a degree assignment to write the first few chapters of a novel. I’ve always been interested in memory, having lost some of mine during routine surgery, so I imagined a woman with a past she couldn’t remember. And I’ve always enjoyed turbulent romances … only reading about them, of course … so I imagined Matthew. Then, after the degree, I wrote more of their story. They were just too engaging to leave behind. So I added context, things I knew: medical research, the publishing industry, cats.

Can you share with us a photo from 2018 that meant something special to you?

Family photo Marco Island, Florida, after surviving a road trip down the East Coast, suffering only a broken foot and an accidental stopover in a spa hotel that didn’t serve alcohol.

What has been your proudest bookish moment?

Receiving my proof copy of What Was Lost.

Do you have any questions for your readers?

What about the last line? Of the numerous feedbacks I’ve received, only two readers have disapproved.

What is your favourite read of your whole life and why?

Pride and Prejudice. I loved Fitzwilliam Darcy from the moment he first appeared at the Meryton Ball. I was thirteen when I first came across him, and I remember that my English teacher wanted me to not like him until later. But I was smitten from the start. I’ve searched for a Darcy ever since, which has placed most men at a disadvantage. But one day I will write his equal. I have also loved Alice in Wonderland for even longer, at first because I wanted Alice’s long blond hair but later on because of its challenge to what is real. Still watching out for the White Rabbit.

What are you working on now?

I’m currently putting the finishing touches to my second book: crime, more relationships and a whole lot of lies.

Thank you so very much, Jean, for stopping by today and taking part in my feature.

💫 Buy Link

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In the name of full transparency, please be aware that this blog
contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for us (at no extra cost for you).

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