We loved Anya’s book, Where the Devil Can’t Go, and from the Amazon reviews – so did you! We caught up with her to find out a little more about it…
Why did you decide to set the book within the Polish community of London?
I’d wanted to write a crime novel for years but was struggling for a way to make it leap out of crime shelves already crowded with London-based police procedurals and thrillers. The light bulb moment came when my (Polish) husband suggested creating a Polish private eye working among London’s Polish community – many of whom live in my part of London, the East End. Setting my PI on collision course with a female police detective over the murder of a Polish girl she’s investigating gave me potential for conflict and a chance to gain an insight through her into the Poles’ mindset, rich culture, and turbulent recent history.
Have any members of the Polish community read the book, and if so what did they think?
Lots of them! And not just friends and family. As I’m English that was a bit scary. They’ve been kind enough to say that I’ve captured something of the Polish spirit: an intriguing combination of small ‘c’ conservative values with an anti-authoritarian streak which I think comes from a constant struggle against invaders and foreign occupation. One Polish reader review cited a ‘brilliant insight into the Polish mentality and the subtle differences between the generations of immigrants’ – which I was absolutely thrilled by.