Judith D Collins
By: Miranda Rijks
Publisher: Inkubator Books
Pub Date: 12/13/2022
My Rating: 5 Stars (ARC)
Their new assistant is friendly, attractive—
and hell-bent on revenge.
High-flying duo Goldie and Braun Delucci run a major film production company. But recently their gilded lives were touched by tragedy when one of their leading actors, Ally, died in a car crash.
What the Deluccis don’t realise is that their newly hired private assistant is actually Ally’s sister. Simone is convinced Ally’s death was suspicious and she is determined to find out what happened on that terrible night.
Simone’s new job puts her at the heart of a rich, dysfunctional family. As she digs for the truth about Ally’s death, she realises someone is watching her. And they want her gone.
That just makes Simone more determined to discover whatever terrible secret the Deluccis are hiding. But she doesn’t understand she is about to uncover something so dark, so shocking that her own life may never be the same again.
The Concierge – the stunning psychological thriller from the best-selling author of The Visitors, The Arrangement, The New Neighbour.
Buy the Book
About the Author
Miranda Rijks is the internationally bestselling author of psychological thrillers, many of which have been Kindle bestsellers. She is the author of twenty books: (Seventeen psychological thrillers, one non-fiction, one biography, and one women’s fiction.) Before becoming a fiction writer, she helped newbie entrepreneurs turn their ideas into successful businesses. In 2015, she was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer, and everything changed.
Rijks lives in Sussex, England with her husband, musician daughter, and black Labradors. When she's not writing, she's dreaming about living in a chalet on a Swiss mountain (a reality), obsessively knitting, and painting on her iPad (procreate artist at Chalet Artstore, online gallery).
Her books include: The Concierge, Forget Me Not, The Insomniac, The Arrangement, The New Neighbour, The Second Wife, The Only Child, The Visitors, What She Knew, The Influencer, Roses Are Red, You Are Mine, Deserve To Die, I Want You Gone, Fatal Fortune, Fatal Flowers, and Fatal Finale.
You can find Miranda online at www.mirandarijks.com If you'd like to receive her free short stories, info on her writing, and be the first to know about her upcoming releases sign up for her newsletter at https://mirandarijks.substack.com
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Miranda Rijks' Books
Psychological thrillers, crime fiction, domestic suspense, mystery, and suspense.
Q&A Elevator Ride with
bestselling author Miranda Rijks
"Behind the Book and the Author"
Exceptional Authors. Standout Books. Elevator Talk.
INTRIGUING QUESTIONS. INQUIRING READERS WANT TO KNOW
"Behind the Book"
Welcome to the December #AuthorElevatorSeries —where we go behind the scenes of the book and the author. We are super excited to have with us for the first time, one of my favorite authors from Sussex, England— the bestselling author, Miranda Rijks, and her highly anticipated psychological thriller, THE CONCIERGE.
I have recently discovered Miranda and her novels. Her books are so fascinating, and I always learn something new having read them. You may have been seeing a lot of them floating around on my top books list, blog, newsletters. So, I want you to meet her! Let’s dive in.
Q. Give us your BEST Elevator Pitch for THE CONCIERGE.
MIRANDA: Goldie and Braun Delucci’s new assistant is friendly, attractive – and hell-bent on revenge. The Deluccis run a major film production company but tragically, Ally, one of their leading actors, recently died in a car crash. Ally’s sister, Simone, is convinced her death was suspicious. She gets the job as the Delucci’s private concierge, but as she digs for the truth about this rich, dysfunctional family, she uncovers a terrible secret and it may not only be her life that’s in danger…
Q. INSPIRATION: The spark that ignited the novel? Where were you when the idea came to you?
MIRANDA: I am fascinated by concierge lifestyle services and wondered what it’s like to work for people who lead such a different lifestyle to your own. The idea came to me when I was in the Swiss mountains, but the plot has moved away quite a bit from the original premise.
Q. SETTING: Tell us more about the book setting and why you selected?
MIRANDA: I chose to set the book in Putney, London – an affluent area of south London. Unlike many of my other books, I wanted a dense, urban environment for much of the action – a suitable home for the Deluccis, the film production duo at the heart of the novel.
Q. RESEARCH: Any fascinating research for the novel, or anything you learned along the way?
MIRANDA: I know nothing about the film industry, so my wonderful editor, Jan Smith, who is also a script writer, was able to give me lots of detail to make the book more authentic. Sadly I didn’t have time to visit a film studio during the writing process.
Q. CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT: Your favorite character to write, and/or most challenging?
MIRANDA: I loved writing from Rose’s perspective. She’s 17, sassy, rebellious but despite all the ill-judged and morally dubious things that she does, she has a kind heart.
Q. ARTIST: In addition to being a multi-talented bestselling author you are also a gifted artist. Tell us more!
MIRANDA: This came as a surprise to me! I picked up a paintbrush for the first time five years ago after recovering from bone cancer and discovered I wasn’t as bad as I thought I’d be. Since then, I downloaded Procreate on my iPad and taught myself how to paint digitally. I love to draw mountains, particularly views of the Swiss Alps where I’m lucky enough to spend a lot of time. I set up a separate Instagram account (@mirandarijksart) and was approached by Chalet Artstore, an online gallery that supplies artwork to chalet owners, interior designers and hotels. They launched me as a new artist in November selling fine giclee prints of some of my artworks.
Q. WRITING: Do you have a favorite chapter or scene in the novel you enjoyed writing the most?
MIRANDA: Yes, the chapter about Rose when she pretends to be a hotel porter and then meets Tony.
Q. TOPICS: Name 1-3 topics or themes addressed in the novel?
That women can’t really have it all
Q. GENRE: You are known for your psychological thrillers with a twist and your winning signature style. What continues to draw you to this genre?
MIRANDA: I love writing about ordinary people who have to face up to their fears (which are probably subconsciously my own!). I also like the challenge of writing books that have interwoven plots and leave the reader guessing.
Q. BOOKS: Many of our readers may not know about your other books. Tell us more about your novels and your journey as an author.
MIRANDA: I started writing fiction as a child and have several books that will never see the light of day. As an adult, I completed a masters in writing and was mainstream published for a self-help book and a biography. My life came to a full stop when I was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma (a rare bone cancer) in 2015. In 2018, having recovered, I wrote a book called Don’t Call Me Brave, about a woman who survived and thrived bone cancer. I then wrote a psychological thriller and self-published it.
My publishers, Inkubator Books found that book and approached me asking if they could re-release it. It’s now called I Want You Gone and is the first of the seventeen books I’ve written with Inkubator Books. The past three and a half years have been amazing and thanks to the support of Inkubator I’ve had several bestsellers and we’ve sold hundreds of thousands of books. It’s a dream come true!
Q. UPCOMING: Can you share what you are currently working on or what is next in ten words or less (or more)?
MIRANDA: I’m having a break but there’s another domestic thriller stewing in my brain!
Now, for more about the author.
"Behind the Author"
BIRTH STATE? or (Country)
CURRENT STATE? (Country)
West Sussex, England
Gin! Particularly Silent Pool which is a gin made in the Surrey Hills.
Dog. We have two black Labradors, one old and one young.
Knitting (I’m a yarn addict) and painting on my iPad.
YOUR FAVORITE LIFE LESSON QUOTE?
‘Grab the opportunity of a lifetime in the lifetime of the opportunity’ - is our family motto.
FAVORITE TYPE OF MUSIC?
Anything by my musician daughter, Ceskie. (pronounced Chess-kie!)
FAVORITE HOLIDAY OR SEASON?
Summer in the Alps.
A FAVORITE FLOWER?
FAVORITE READING FORMAT?
Digital (although I feel a bit guilty for saying that!)
MOST MEMORABLE PLACE YOU HAVE TRAVELED? Bliss & Stars - a very remote eco retreat in the Cederberg Mountains in South Africa
IF YOU WERE GRANTED 3 MONTHS OF UNINTERRUPTED WRITING TIME—WHERE WOULD IT BE?
A Quiet Scenic Mountain Cabin surrounded by nature
(Actually, I’m so lucky because this is often my reality!)
WHEN YOU RECEIVE A SPARK OF INSPIRATION FOR A BOOK:
Make a few quick notes on a pad or device.
YOUR FAVORITE PLACE TO WRITE?
At the kitchen table with the dogs nearby.
MESSY OR NEAT?
Messy. I wish I wasn’t…
YOUR FAVORITE SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM? (Or would you prefer none of them)?
Instagram because I’ve been lucky enough to connect with so many amazing book bloggers and other authors. They provide a sense of community in what can be an isolating job.
A FAVORITE CHARACTER FROM YOUR BOOK(s).
Tamara from Deserve To Die.
HOW MANY BOOKS HAVE YOU WRITTEN?
20. (17 x psychological thrillers, 1 x non-fiction, 1 x biography, 1 x women’s fiction.)
WHAT EVERYDAY SITUATION DRIVES YOU MAD?
When people are late!
NAME SOMETHING YOU CONSIDER YOURSELF TO BE VERY GOOD AT?
NAME ONE THING YOU CONSIDER YOURSELF TO BE BAD AT?
WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
WHAT WOULD YOUR DAUGHTER (OR SON) SAY ABOUT YOU BEING AN AUTHOR, IF ASKED?
My daughter would say that she’s very proud of me but will never, ever read any of my books!
DESCRIBE YOURSELF IN THREE WORDS OR LESS?
Creative, self-motivated, worrier.
IF YOU HAD TO ADVERTISE YOUR BOOKS TO READERS WHO HAVE NOT READ THEM, WHAT YOU SAY?
Fast-paced, twisty psychological thrillers
A FAVORITE SPORT?
Skiing but I haven’t skied since having my femur replaced with titanium (due to bone cancer). I want to be brave enough to give it a go.
TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT YOURSELF THAT YOUR READERS MAY NOT KNOW.
I have possibly the largest collection of cow bells in the United Kingdom!
WHAT ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT?
Being creative. I think everyone has a spark of creativity in them, they just need to believe and find it.
IF YOU COULD CURE ONE DISEASE, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
ONE BIT OF ADVICE YOU WOULD GIVE AN INSPIRING AUTHOR?
Write because you love the process of writing. Write every day. Don’t expect your first book to be a best-seller. Never give up. (Whoops – that wasn’t one bit of advice!)
WHAT ARE EARLIER JOBS YOU HAD BEFORE BECOMING AN AUTHOR?
Marketing; serial entrepreneur including: running a large garden centre; a leisure attraction; a holiday cottage. Business coach and consultant to small businesses and also trained in psychometric testing.
WHAT IS YOUR WRITING PROCESS LIKE?
BEST PART OF BEING AN AUTHOR?
Bringing escapism and (hopefully) enjoyment to thousands of readers.
AT WHAT AGE DID YOU CONSIDER BECOMING A WRITER?
Seven. It took another 44 years.
THE GENRE YOU READ THE MOST?
Psychological thrillers of course!
AN ITEM ON YOUR BUCKET LIST?
Visiting the Galápagos Islands
SOMETHING YOU WILL NEVER TRY AGAIN?
White water rafting.
THE CRAZIEST THING YOU HAVE EVER DONE FOR BOOK RESEARCH?
A zoom call in a hotel lounge discussing ways to kill a character. All the other guests walked out! WHAT SOUND DO YOU LOVE?
Cowbells in the mountains.
IF YOU LANDED A TV SERIES OR MOVIE ADAPTED BASED ON ONE OF YOUR BOOKS, WHICH ONE WOULD IT BE?
IF YOU WERE GRANTED ONE WISH, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
THANK YOU, Miranda, for spending time with us today!
Miranda Rijks returns following (2022) Forget Me Not and The Insomniac with her latest twisty and riveting psychological thriller, THE CONCIERGE.
An obsessed woman goes undercover as a private concierge (Assistant) for a high-profile power couple of a successful film business in search of the truth about the mystery of her sister, that was killed mysteriously.
What goes on behind closed doors of the famous and wealthy? A web of deceit, lies, and greed is unraveled, exposing the dark underbelly of human nature in this fast-paced cat-and-mouse thriller.
Set in South London, Simone Carver, a single woman and a bookkeeper (self-employed), worries about her younger sister, Alison Greystone (Ally). Her sister is a famous actress. They are close, and she practically raised her after their parents died tragically.
Ally was cast by Delucci Productions as one of their leading roles in a new film, The Insomniac. Alley is married to Rob and has a four-year-old little girl, Carly. She barely sees her family with the long hours and dedication she puts in at the studio.
Goldie and Braun Delucci are the power couple behind the production company. They are wealthy with two children, a daughter Rose (17), and a son, Florian (13).
They have an entire staff and a personal concierge (which is more prestigious than a personal assistant). This person manages things a home, administrative work, pay bills, takes care of the kids' school forms, takes children to school, runs errands, is a housekeeper-nanny, and does whatever is asked. Plus, put up with a lot of manipulation by the mean daughter, Rose.
The concierge lives onsite in a basement flat with its own entrance, kitchenette, living room, bedroom, and bath. She is privy to passwords and private information (home and business).
When Simone receives the tragic phone call from her brother-in-law, Rob, that her sister was killed in a car accident, she is devastated.
There is an investigation by PC Deidre Withington and DS Graham Foley, but something is off since the Porsche Cayenne she was driving was in the name of Goldie Delucci, and drugs were involved.
Her sister would not be driving this late at night, tired, or in someone else's car when she takes the train. Also, she has never done drugs. She hated drugs.
Why was she driving their car? Something is not right, and Simone knows all too well rich and powerful people can cover up their misdeeds.
When the investigation goes cold and says it was just a woman on drugs in a single auto accident, Simon knows she must take matters into her own hands.
She does not believe the police, the coroner, and most of all, she does not believe the Deluccis. She must lie low and not have her face in the papers as the sister of the actress who died. She must work smart to uncover the truth in the background.
Simone becomes obsessed with uncovering the events leading up to her sister's death. She will not be satisfied with the investigation that this was an accident. Her sister deserves better. She feels the Delucci's are covering up critical pieces of the puzzle. What went down that night?
Simone is savvy and tenacious. She discovers the Delucci's recently terminated their assistant and cleverly figures out a way (stealing their dog, Minnie, to return it) to get her foot in the door to be hired as their new personal concierge (assistant). Equipped with a fake name, references, and CV.
She must befriend the previous assistant, Lauren Barton, to gather details. This is quite comical, and then the twist at the end is delicious!
Ironically, Delucci's rebellious daughter, Rose, set up the prior assistant (hiding her mom's things in Lauren's apartment). She wants her gone. She of course, is terminated.
Simone lands the job and immediately starts her super sleuthing. She soon finds out this family is highly dysfunctional. The mom works all the time and is the brains of the production company. She has no time for her children. Braun, the husband, works all the time, editing at the studio, or so he says and is never around. He is sleazy and untrustworthy. We will soon learn all he is capable of.
Florian is being bullied (gay), and his parents keep sending him off to camp, which he hates. He is a sensitive boy and loves to draw. Rose is trouble. A total nightmare. She does whatever she wants; she is manipulative, mean, rebellious, and has quite the criminal mind. She even tries to get Simone fired, but Simone is one step ahead.
Day by day, Simone discovers more and suspects the husband is not what he seems. She needs proof. She is fueled with anger and wants nothing but revenge. To take down this man! She wants justice for her sister.
Ally's husband, Rob, is distraught, and it is all he can do to take care of Carly, their daughter, so she does not include him in her devious plan.
However, things get complex when Rose (she is street smart) steals credit cards, money, and all sorts of things to give to the poor and meets an evil drug-pin guy, Tony. She steals from the rich to give to the poor. She is infatuated with the bad boy (man) and does not see the evil, dangerous side yet. They start doing these criminal jobs together. They have a plan. He is an older guy, and her parents have no clue nor the connection.
The Author ratchets up the tension when a high-stakes home invasion kidnapping goes bad, and Rose and little Carly (Simone's) niece get caught in the cross-fires.
Told from POVs of the three ladies: Simone, Goldie, and Rose.
The sins of the father rise to the surface. Simone comes clean, and she and Goldie join forces to try and save Rose and Carly from the bad guys before it is too late. As always, the Rijks pulls out her signature jaw-dropping twist that will tie all the pieces together for a satisfying conclusion.
Rijks' latest thriller relentlessly uncovers many secrets, leading readers down a delicious path of fear, lies, and long-awaited justice, with an ending that will leave jaws dropping.
Wow! Readers, you are going to love these strong women! A cast of well-developed characters. Simone is razor sharp and one step ahead of everyone, except for Rose, who is "hell on wheels," especially when she meets bad boy Tony. But at her core, she has a great heart and is very protective of little Carly. She helps many homeless people, but how she goes about it will keep you laughing. The mom (clueless about everything around her) finally comes around with the help of Simone.
For fans of authors: Kaira Rouda, Somebody's Home, Kimberly Belle's The Personal Assistant and My Darling Husband, and Frieda McFadden's The Housemaid.
"THE CONCIERGE is a brilliant, chilling tale of justice, revenge, and good vs. evil. One woman's sheer determination to honor her sister."
It is hard to believe this is the fourth book in 2022 by Miranda Rijks. Still trying to figure out how she cranks out all these winners! She is a rock star. No wonder she needed a respite in South Africa. Maybe we will see a book set there in the future.
I enjoyed the Letter from the Author, the inspiration behind the book, and the dedication. Includes excerpt from The Influencer. I also enjoyed how the Author used some of her book titles as films in the book and the tribute to Simone's sister, Alison.
AUTHOR INTERVIEW: I am delighted and honored to host Miranda Rijks for the first time on pub date 12/13 as featured #AuthorElevatorSeries Interview, where we go behind the scenes of the book and the Author. She has an exciting background- you do not want to miss this one!
I recently discovered this talented UK author, and I want everyone to meet her here in the US. I am sure you have seen my reviews on my blog and social media. She is one of my favorites, and I am making my way through her backlist between the new releases.
Highly recommend! If you have not read The Insomniac and Forget Me Not, check them out. Both are 5 Stars as well.
Thanks to the Author and #InkubatorBooks #NetGalley for an e-ARC for review, interview, and enjoyment.
💻 @JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks
My Rating: 5 💙 Stars
Pub Date: Dec 13, 2022
🎁 Just in time for holiday reading and gift-giving.
🧧 Dec 2022 Must-Read Books
THE CONCIERGE (2022)
FORGET ME NOT (2022)
THE INSOMNIAC (2022) Top Books of 2022
THE SECOND WIFE (2022)
WHAT SHE KNEW (2022)
THE NEW NEIGHBOUR (2022)
THE VISITORS (2022)
THE ARRANGEMENT (2022)
DESERVE TO DIE (2022)
ROSES ARE RED (2022)