The other day, my wife made an observation about my body of work; namely that virtually all my novels, either peripherally or directly, concern an existential crisis. I thought about this, and have come to the conclusion that she is correct.
Notions of identity, delusion and not being able to trust reality are definitely a running theme in my work, along with other mainstays such as abuse of power, religious oppression and so forth. Here are some examples from the novels I have published thus far (avoiding major spoilers):
George goes to Neptune – Admittedly the first two novels don’t deal with an existential crisis, but the third in the George Hughes trilogy definitely does. George’s highly unusual battle with his dark side is what inspired me to write this third novel and complete the trilogy.
Uncle Flynn – The question of who is Uncle Flynn runs throughout the entire novel, particularly during the hunt for the hidden treasure. Throughout much of the story, police pursue him and his nephew Max across Dartmoor, for mysterious unknown reasons.
Dr Gribbles and the Beast of Blackthorn Lodge – An identity crisis of sorts lies at the heart of this story, involving Dr Gribbles’s daughter Emily and the Beast itself.
Children of the Folded Valley – Quantum physics and the nature of reality are a theme behind this story, still my most successful novel to date.
The Birds Began to Sing – From the very first chapter, it is clear that Alice’s perceptions of reality should be questioned. The suspense in many of the events that follow hinges on the question of whether or not what Alice is seeing is real or a delusion.
Love vs Honour – Spiritual identity crises form the heart of my attempt at teenage romantic drama.
Most recently, my supernatural thriller cum horror story The Thistlewood Curse pulls the rug out from the reader in a variety of existential crises involving ghosts, astral projection and more. You can download or buy a print copy of The Thistlewood Curse here.
Existential crisis remains a theme in virtually all my (as yet) unpublished novels, and this will no doubt continue to be the case.