Japan 1985 – a young English woman battles her conscience.
Money blows across a field, the notes slapping against the stubble of dry rice stalks. Mr Ito walks towards the irrigation ditch at the end of his field, his rubber boots kicking up dust.
Standing at the ditch, he remembers the rumour; the one about the missing English woman.
But this is Mari’s story. She knows it’s her fault that her sister died, and trying to move on, she takes a dream job teaching English in small-town Japan. It turns into a nightmare when Mari learns that she’s employed by the yakuza (Japanese mafia), and that the man she loves has his own dark secrets. When the yakuza play their final hand, Mari believes that once again, it’s all her fault.
1. Do you always take a book/e-reader wherever you go?
I do, especially on long trips when I go travelling. I like a physical book for lazy hammock or beach days, then I’ll read off my tablet in my room. And then there are audio books for overnight train/plane journeys.
2. Say someone asks if they can use your name in a book. Would you rather be the ‘good one’ or the ‘bad one’?
The bad one, definitely! Much more fun.
3. Where can I find you when you are reading?
In my reading/writing chair, with my back to the window, legs curled up.
4. Where can I find you when you are not writing/reading?
Asleep. Usually in my reading/writing chair, with my legs curled up.
5. Can you walk past a bookstore without going inside?
No. I’m addicted to the smell, and those pristine new covers.
6. What are you most proud of?
At the moment, my first novel.
7. What goes through your mind when you hold your new book in your hands for the first time?
It’s a surreal feeling. I couldn’t sit down for about an hour. But I had no thoughts as such, just a whole lot of emotion.
8. What piece of advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Take your creativity and run with it. You never know where your story will end. Or where it will start.
9. Who would you like/have liked to interview?
The Dalai Lama. He’s my favourite person in the world.
10. When and where do you prefer to write?
I write with my laptop on my knees, as I sit in my chair. I work full time, so I tend to write all day at the weekend. Working from home is great. I’ve just started my second book, and get up at 6am so I can write for a few hours before I start work.
Thanks for asking such interesting questions!
Thank you, Gigi Karagoz and Love Books Group
About the author
Gigi has spent most of her life living and working in countries all over the world. Her big passion is travel, especially in Asia, and India is a favourite destination. Giving up a career in tourism, she qualified as a holistic therapist and worked in yoga retreats in the Mediterranean for twelve years. Currently, Gigi lives in Wiltshire with Isabella, the cat she rescued from the streets of Fethiye, in southern Turkey.