Interview: Duns author Janet O’Kane

Janet O'Kane with her new book 'No Stranger to Death'
Janet O'Kane with her new book 'No Stranger to Death'

Duns author Janet O’Kane has achieved one of her dreams: her crime novel ‘No Stranger to Death’ was one of the most borrowed books in Borders libraries in May and June this year.

“I couldn’t believe it when I looked at the Scottish Borders Council website and saw my book at number 14 out of their 25 most popular titles,” Janet exclaimed.

“It’s just below JK Rowling’s ‘The Casual Vacancy and Gillian Flynn’s ‘Gone Girl’, and above books by crime-writers I really admire, like Quintin Jardine and Peter Robinson. And it’s the only self-published title in the list - unless you count the Scottish Government’s White Paper!

‘People don’t realise how important libraries are to writers. I recently took part in a local authors’ event and a man came up to me to apologise for ‘only’ borrowing my book rather than buying it. I told him about the PLR scheme which pays writers a small sum every time their books are taken out from libraries.

“But it isn’t just a question of money. The Borders is my adopted home as well as providing the setting for my book.

“The fact that readers living here have enjoyed ‘No Stranger to Death’ makes me so happy and is a huge encouragement now I’m writing its sequel.’

That sequel is due for release next summer and Janet has also been buoyed by some of the fantastic review its predecessor has had online.

‘No Stranger to Death’ has had 27 reviews on Amazon so far, 24 of those five star and featuring comments like ‘there were enough twists and turns to keep even the most hardened crime fiction fan on the edge of their seat’ and ‘I found it hard to put this book down.”

“After having a desire to write and publish a book for so long I now can’t see myself doing anything else,” Janet commented.

“I already have plans for another four books.

“I can’t give too much away about the second book but it does start with the discovery of another dead body.”