One of my lovely Advance Copy Readers (thank you, Amanda) contacted me recently to say they had finished reading Hard to Forgive (and thoroughly enjoyed it, thankfully) and were loving the series with all the different aspects of suspense covered in each book. I thought that was an important point to perhaps mention again.

When I set out writing the A Shade Darker series, I obviously did some research into what a psychological thriller was, and more importantly what a domestic thriller was as it was into that particular niche that I wanted my books to fall into.

This is what I found:

Psychological thriller books often incorporate elements of mystery and include themes of crime, morality, mental disease, drug abuse, multiple realities or a dissolving sense of reality, and unreliable narrators.

domestic thriller is a style of psychological thriller that

– takes place primarily in a confined setting, e.g., house and home (thus domestic), suburban neighbourhood, remote cabin, small town, or alike

– focuses on interpersonal relationships of a few, close characters, e.g., husband and wife, parent and children, other family members, old friends, neighbours

– and brings terror, disruption, or tension into the seemingly “normal” or “perfect” life or relationship (e.g., dark family secrets, lies, infidelity, jealousy, accident, death, trauma)

I have also found that the words thriller and suspense are interchangeable in these genres.

Authors are encouraged to write books in a series because if a reader enjoys one, they will hopefully go on to read all the others. So, this is what I set out to do. However, I do have a nagging sensation in the back of my head that I’m doing it all wrong because my books do not follow any sort of formula. I’m sure you know what I mean. We see it with books as well as television shows (often based on books, of course). There’s a murder, for example, the police and perhaps an amateur sleuth investigate and the crime is satisfactorily solved by the end of it. Midsomer Murders is a prime example, the population of the fictional county of Midsomer dwindling at an alarming rate over a series. Series such as these are hugely popular because the reader/viewer knows exactly what they are going to get and they keep coming back for more.

I haven’t done that, which is what makes me nervous. I haven’t written to a formula where the same characters reappear which is probably a bit daft on my part because these series are often, like I said before, hugely popular. However, it was an intentional decision because I am an independent author and can choose to write what I want to write. And writing the same story over and over does not appeal to me in the slightest.

So far there are three books in this series and book 4 will follow in 2025. They follow all of the above regarding the “rules” of psychological and domestic suspense but the stories are very different. While they are all set in the small village of Melton each book features a different main character in a very different type of suspenseful situation.

I am therefore hoping to find readers that want surprises in their reading and don’t want to read the same story again and again. Whether or not I will find them is anyone’s guess, it’s early days, but if you know of such a reader do point them in my direction, won’t you?


My making the change to psychological or domestic suspense post can be read HERE.

If you would like to read the about-to-be-released Hard to Forgive you can find it HERE, or by clicking on the book cover below.


And if you are new to this A Shade Darker series you should start HERE with A Killer Strikes, the eBook of which is currently only 99p/99c or the equivalent wherever you are in the world.

A Killer Strikes - Georgia Rose - Ashade Darker - January

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8 Responses to Writing a series where each book is different and no formula is followed #psychologicalthriller #domesticthriller #suspense #NewRelease Hard to Forgive by @GeorgiaRoseBook
  1. One of the things I love about your books is that they are so different. I can’t predict their outcomes because I can’t see a formula. And that’s so much fun! It’s got to be twice as hard for an author, but what a treat for readers.

    • Thank you, Barb. I enjoy genuine twists and surprises in my reading so I just try to provide the same in my writing. Although coming up with something different each time can be challenging

  2. I think it is refreshing to read something different and people do get tired of the same thing all the time. I believe you are on the right track. I try very hard to make my books not appear to be following a formula. Keep doing what you’re doing!

  3. I’ve loved every one of this series. It’s like looking in on people in a village and learning all about them and their histories – such brilliantly rounded characters. And such a great innovative idea!


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