Interview with Ava Roberts, Author of The Vanishing Neighbor

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What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write The Vanishing Neighbor?

I was reading a lot of domestic thrillers, and the thought kept popping up that I could do this, and maybe in a new and better way. I wanted Grace’s story to be incredibly fast-paced, as I sometimes would read books and find myself losing interest. I came up with the idea of Grace, a woman who’s trying to fit into a new neighborhood, so she hosts a party, but then her neighbor goes missing at the party. From there, the story took on a life of its own and even I didn’t see the twists that were to come.

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of The Vanishing Neighbor, what would they be?

Katy Perry’s “Roar.” Grace has to fight every obstacle imaginable– snobby neighbors, nasty rumors, a missing neighbor, her husband becoming a murder suspect, someone trying to lure away her young daughter, the list goes on and on. But she never gives up. In fact, she gets stronger.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

I love to read psychological thrillers, and I love to write psychological thrillers.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

Minka Kent’s “Gone Again”. I can’t wait for it to come out. She’s an amazing author and a mentor to me.

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

The beach house scene were they go for a mini girls trip. So many secrets were revealed, the transformation of their relationships during that trip was really fun to write.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

The only writing habit I have is one that I’m afraid isn’t very quirky: write 1,000 words a day and stick to it.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

My family is everything to me. I tried to put that same love for her family into Grace’s character.

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

A few early readers have said that after “The Vanishing Neighbor” ended, they felt sad to leave the characters, that they’d cared for them, and that was the biggest compliment for me.


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