THE MYSTERIOUS Faber family are at the centre of the plot of the new book Flight: Perfection the first published by Katy Miller of Hedon.
The Fabers are weird! They look weird and they act weird. The staring, non-speaking, Jordain Faber is particularly strange. The other kids at the school in Old Town, Maine, USA are nervous of them, and nobody there had actually heard the reclusive children talk in their peculiar English accents, until that is Alya Drake also from England arrives as a newcomer and begins to converse with them.
But the strange stabbing sensation in Alya’s neck and the nagging voice in her head (both began when she first met the Fabers) just will not go away. Run! urges the voice. Don’t believe them! it pleads. Just what is going on!? – Ray Duffill
Just a few pages into the book and I’m enthralled. Katy Miller, at only 21, has written some cracking opening chapters in a book that is only part one of a five-part saga. Published by Echo Books which specialises in producing the works of new authors, Katy tells me that the book has been classed as for the ‘teen fiction’ market but that surprised me because it’s been a few years now since I’ve been a teenager – and maybe I am a recycled teenager? – but I have no trouble enjoying the book, so it’s certainly got a wider readership appeal!
Katy from Sheriff Highway in Hedon has spent most of her adult life writing the book. She started it when she was 14 but had already been writing short stories for pleasure for a couple of years before that. She’s a spontaneous writer she says. Ideas just flood into her head and she’ll actually spend a long time thinking and re-imagining her creations before writing anything down. But it’s not just flights of fancy, because Katy has also brought her own experiences into her writing.
She was inspired to write Flight: Perfection after visiting the Highlands of Scotland on annual holidays; the beautiful scenery, the lakes and the mountains were inspiration enough, but it was also her desire to discover more about Celtic customs, history and folklore. “I wanted to meet the Celts,” she says, “and through my research for the book I have! I’ve never been to Old Town in Maine which is where the story is located, but I’ve visited virtually via Google Earth and it’s been easy to transpose my love of the Highlands to the scenery there. Through Google Earth I can show you where my main character Alya lives in Old Town, and where she goes to school.”
“The setting in America is also the place that Alya has chosen to ‘escape to’ from her dysfunctional life back in England and in many ways it reflects my own life at the time I started writing the book five years ago – I just wanted to get away and somewhere like Old Town is where I would have liked to escape to.”
Katy has a love of history generally and volunteers at Hedon Museum as its press officer. “As well as wanting to write my novels, I’ve always wanted to work in a Museum. And I’ve achieved both ambitions!” she beamed. And it’s clear to see the satisfaction on her face as she talks about history, her enjoyment of photography, embroidery and polymer clay modelling and working with stained glass. A busy and creative list of hobbies that surely helps to fire an imagination that has brought about Flight: Perfection.
Unsurprisingly, Katy is a lover of the Harry Potter series of books and says she owes her love of literature through the work of JK Rowling and without that author’s influence wouldn’t be where she is today. In fact, if you like Rowling you will also probably like Miller! Katy is also a fan of the Twilight books and you can probably see in Katy’s work hints of these ‘other worldly’ influences.
The book may have took five years to complete (she’d finished it by July 2013) but getting a publisher was easier than Katy expected. She’d sent off speculative letters to a few publishers about what they wanted by way of plot synopsis and copies of manuscripts but just seems to have struck it lucky with her publisher Queue Press who had just launched a new venture Echo Books concentrating on promoting new writers and they accepted the book in September.
The book was published in December but Katy recently attended a book-signing event at Waterstones in York aimed at introducing new writers.
The book is available on from the Waterstone’s website and via Amazon – but I suspect it will be a lot more widely available once people realise just what a talent we have in Hedon’s Katy Miller.
Available on Amazon: Flight:Perfection
Available on Waterstones: Flight: Perfection
Follow Katie Miller on Facebook. Please like her page: Katy Miller
When Alya Drake left England and moved to America, she thought that she was leaving her troubles, along with her dysfunctional family, behind her. Upon her arrival in Maine, she meets Jordain, a strange yet intriguing boy. Her friends, her brother and even the voices inside her own head warn her of his dangerous and reclusive family. However, the same hope and desire that brought her to America prevails and she is welcomed into their lives with open arms. The more time she spends with Jordain and his family, the more she realises that something about them is indeed far from normal. Yet when they ask desperately for her help, she is forced to ignore her instincts and hope that there is a reasonable explanation for the web of secrets and conspiracy theories she is now embroiled in. Her efforts to uncover the truth lead her to a shocking discovery, one with unimaginable consequences…
ISBN: 9780993006920 360pages
The book cover is illustrated by Katy’s best friend Katie Cavanagh and depicts a piece of medieval art fresco.