The Final Faraday Files Book Is Finished

It’s been a long time coming.

I started The Deathsniffer’s Assistant — the first time — almost ten years ago. It was a germ of an idea with no outline, no endgame, and no real vision. I just wanted to write a cool mystery novel in a fantasy world, something I’d dreamed of reading since I was just a kid who loved Nancy Drew and unicorns.

It grew over time. It developed new angles, new depths. Themes about societal change and the power of hope and the importance of self-acceptance. A simple mystery story became part of a larger tale of conspiracy, betrayal, and monumental change. Characters appeared and took over, and they infected my life with their stories. I came to love them like they were real people.

Now, The Spiritbinder’s Key, the forth and final book in the Faraday Files series, has left my hands. And let me tell you, finishing the final book of a series like this feels a lot different than finishing any of the others did. I’m torn between elation — because I think the ending is good, and I think you’ll all love it — and a soft kind of sadness.

I’ve been on the other side of this a lot. I cried through the last one hundred pages of The Master of Heathcrest Hall by Galen Beckett, knowing I’d never see Ivy, Rafferdy, and Eldyn again after that last page. NK Jemisin’s The Broken Earth is my favourite series of the decade, and I still haven’t started The Stone Sky because that will be the beginning of the end. Just this week, I finished Witchmark by C.L. Polk, and I’ve laid awake, having a hard time getting to sleep, mourning the brief but incandescent time I spent in Kingston with her wonderful cast. I form strong attachments to characters, and parting with them is always hard.

But it’s very different on this side of the keyboard. From the moment I conceived of these characters, I knew how their stories would end. I knew who would live and who would die. I knew the final destinations for all their relationships. I often wish I could spend more time with the casts of my favourite books, but I have enough faith in my own writing to know that I’m leaving my own characters at the right moment.

But I will miss them. So much! I’ve been with these characters for so, so long, you guys It’s staggering to imagine them going on into their lives after the final page without me there beside them. Each of their endings are perfect. Everything came together better than I could have dreamed. I’m utterly thrilled to have been able to tell their stories.

But there’s always something bittersweet about even the best goodbyes.

I look forward to sharing everything I’ve worked toward with all of you. As soon as there’s any news about release, you’ll be the first to know!

For now, it’s time for me to start work on something new… which is pretty scary, honestly. I haven’t sat down and sketched out the borders of a new world in a dog’s age, and I’ve gotten used to playing with an established cast, a set of parametres, my readers already knowing at least some of what’s going on. It’s overwhelming… but exciting, too. The thrill of the blank page calls to me, and I’m up to the challenge of filling it.

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The Heartreader’s Secret cover & preorder!

I’m so excited to finally be revealing the gorgeous cover for The Faraday Files book number 3, The Heartreader’s Secret! In THS, Chris and Olivia are leaving the big city and their murders to solve a missing persons case in the country. You’ll get to see the world beyond Darrington, explore the motivations and hidden desires of the heartreader Rachel Albany, and, what everyone has been waiting for, finally meet Olivia’s mother!

3 The Heartreader's Secret final front cover final

Chris and Rachel look so amazing on this cover. Thanks so much to my wonderful cover artist, Amalia Chitulescu, for knocking it out of the park once again. Don’t you love the blue highlights and how they bring life to the image? Amazing.

You can pre-order The Heartreader’s Secret here on Amazon.com.  More links to other vendors will be added later! The book is out in less than a month, which is just so exciting. I can’t wait for you all to read it!

Experience The Deathsniffer’s Assistant in a New Way December 15th!

The date is coming up on the audio book release date of The Deathsniffer’s Assistant!

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cover for the audio edition!

Maybe you’ve been meaning to check out the book and haven’t been able to make time in your busy schedule. Maybe you’ve already read it and want to reread. Or maybe you’re like me, and think of audiobooks as a form of adaptation, and just want to see TDA adapted to a new format! There are tons of reasons to pick it up in either digital or physical format!

The audiobook of The Deathsniffer’s Assistant is published by Tantor Audio, performed by Romy Nordlinger, and proliferated by Audible. Here are some places you can pick it up!

Tantor’s Site: You can get the book here in physical form as either an Audio CD, which can be played in most CD players, and an MP3 CD, which will not work in a base model CD player, but will contain an MP3 that you can access from a computer or MP3 CD player!

Audible Site: If you’d rather go digital, you can get the audiobook off Audible! It can be purchased with either credits, if you have an Audible membership, or normal money! Through the audible app, you can listen to the book on your phone or computer easily.

Amazon: Finally, you can buy it in either physical or digital via Amazon! The physical version has Amazon Prime attached to it, so if you’re a Prime member, you can have it at your house in two days! Amazon also has the awesome functionality where, if you’ve already bought the Kindle edition of the book, you can get the audible version for only four dollars!

People are already asking me the big question, of course, which is — will The Timeseer’s Gambit also be out, and if so, when? And what about books three and four? The short answer is, it depends! Tantor wants to see how the first one sells before it commits to the sequels. The best way to make sure you get to hear Olivia’s first official serial killer case is to pick up the first one and give it a listen!

The Heartreader’s Secret is Complete!

After a solid two months of writing 40 hours a week, I have finally written the last word in the first draft of The Heartreader’s Secret, Faraday Files number 3!

It’s only been done for a few hours now, so there’s no news on when it’ll be in your hands. Hopefully not too long, but publishing takes a while… and there’s a lot of work left to do on the book. But this stuff is honestly the easy part, and I can’t wait until the book is in your hands!

Here are some quick facts about The Heartreader’s Secret:

1. The first draft has clocked at 144k words. The Deathsniffer’s Assistant finished at 160k. The Timeseer’s Gambit was 132. That puts THS firmly in the middle of the three so far. It’s worth noting that word count can change a lot in revisions, of course! TDA and TTG ended up essentially the same length as TDA lost scenes and TTG picked some up.

2. It’s the darkest book in the series. The Faraday Files book are meant to act as both self-contained stories and four acts of one narrative. THS is very much the lowest point for the heroes as we head into the climax and finale in the final book.

3. It isn’t set (entirely) in Darrington City. Olivia and Chris’s case in this book takes them out of the big city and to the rambling country estate where Olivia grew up. Summergrove has become a hotbed for activity, with Rachel Albany, Rosemary Buckley, Emilia Banks, and Francis Livingstone all out there — not to mention Olivia’s mother, Elouise Faraday! It’s inevitable that Chris and Olivia would find themselves out there, and in this book, they do.

4. The titular heartreader is Rachel Albany. Rachel has always been my most challenging character to write, and her prominent role in this book is part of why it’s taken me so long to finish it! But despite her title call, Rachel doesn’t play as prominent a role as Olivia and Will do in the first two books, or Rosemary will in book 4, The Spiritbinder’s Key. THS is the most ensemble book in the series, and pretty much everybody gets a lot of stuff to do.

5. It’s been the hardest book to write by far. TTG stayed miraculously on-point. It only very occasionally diverged from the outline, and only in minor ways. TDA was a far more rambling, out of control creature… but it was also my first book and was a simpler narrative. It was easier to course correct when it strayed. But THS would not stay on topic. Chekov’s guns refused to fire. Entire characters wouldn’t fulfill their designated role. Planned dynamics didn’t play out. New characters appeared. Events played out differently than I envisioned. This book just would not behave, and with so many moving pieces I needed to get squared away for the final book, it was a pain to restructure everything over and over again!

6. I know a whole lot about apples, ciders, and horticulture now. Like, too much. Olivia’s family runs a famous orchard, mill, and cidery. I have something like fifty pages of research about apples, of which I’ve used maybe three lines. Oh, well. I got to drink a lot of different hard ciders for research 😉

Hungry for more? Keep your eyes peeled for more information about The Heartreader’s Secret, coming… hopefully soon!