Interview & Giveaway: No Stone Unturned by Pam Lecky

Today I am super excited to be hosting Author Pam Lecky! Pam's blog tour kicks off today and she graciously stopped by to talk to us more about No Stone Unturned! We also have a giveaway so be sure to enter.

My review will be up a little later today. Sneak peek - I loved it!

Hello Pam and welcome to Passages to the Past! Thanks so much for stopping by today to talk about No Stone Unturned.

To begin, can you please tell us a little about yourself and your writing?

Hello everyone and thanks Amy for inviting me along today.

I’m an Irish historical fiction author who is somewhat obsessed with the late Victorian and early 20th century eras. This most likely stems from a lifetime of consuming historical fiction (crime, mystery and romance), and crime novels from the likes of Dorothy L Sayers, PD James and Agatha Christie. I’m married with three children and work part-time, so my writing time is precious.

My first novel, The Bowes Inheritance, was published when I was 50 and I carry that as a badge of honour for I don’t believe I could have written as well at a younger age. Life experience has to colour your writing and I hope my work is the richer for it. Of course, what I didn’t realise is that writing can become addictive. So here I am four years later, and cannot imagine a time when I will not be driven to put pen to paper. After all, those character voices will not be silenced any other way!

Last year, my writing career took a big step forward when I was lucky enough to sign with the Hardman & Swainson Literary Agency in London - a big thrill for me and I am currently working on a new project for them. I’m also a member of the Society of Authors and an enthusiastic member of the Historical Novel Society.

What inspired you to write No Stone Unturned?

This story has been bubbling away at the back of my mind for some time. My first book was romantic suspense and although I really enjoyed writing it, I wanted to write something a little darker. The initial idea was the prodigal daughter returning home only to be embroiled in a crime, but I also wanted to create a series in which I could develop the characters over time. Initially, Phineas Stone was to be the central character as the private investigator who specialises in insurance fraud, but the more I wrote about Lucy Lawrence, the louder her voice became. Eventually, the entire book was rewritten from her point of view and the Lucy Lawrence Mysteries were born!

Life for women in the Victorian age was very restricted and depending on your class, strict rules applied. I wanted to explore how a relatively young woman, with a strong enough personality and high intelligence (but poorly educated as parents didn’t bother much if you weren’t the heir), would cope within the confines of a troubled marriage. Would she accept her lot or chafe at the bit? But in Lucy’s case, with no money and estranged from her family, she could not walk away. To do so, would be social ruin. However, when circumstances finally release her (her husband’s sudden death), she struggles to find her way. Pretty much every man in her life so far has betrayed her on some level for their own ends. As a result, Lucy finds it difficult to trust her fate to any man.

There is a pivotal point in the story when Lucy realises she must take her destiny into her own hands and she sets out on a dangerous adventure in pursuit of the truth about her late husband and his less than legal activities.

Another theme, which emerged as I explored Lucy’s story, was the strong reliance on female friendship. I suspect this is what sustained many Victorian women, finding themselves in similar circumstances to Lucy. As the story progresses, Lucy comes to rely more and more on her maid Mary, who also begins to shine with talents hitherto unknown, namely a penchant for spying and intrigue. And when trouble does strike, it is her friends, Judith and Sarah, who Lucy turns to.

What research did you undertake when writing No Stone Unturned?

I imagine I would be shocked to add up all the hours but when it’s a pleasure you don’t mind doing it. I’m lucky, I guess, in that I find the research as much fun as the writing and often have to drag myself away from the numerous rabbit holes I find myself down on google!

Even in the first chapter I ran into an important question - what was the nearest mortuary to Vine Street Police Station in London in 1886? How do you even begin to find out such a thing? I began by looking at old maps but wasn’t getting anywhere. Then I remembered a gentleman by the name of Lee Jackson. Now, Lee writes a lot of non-fiction reference book on Victorian London as well as some fabulous Victorian crime novels. I took a chance and asked him the question on twitter. Within minutes he came back with an answer (Dufour Place Mortuary - which no longer exists).

Another knotty problem for me was the London Underground. My heroine escapes her pursuers by running down into King’s Cross Underground station, but I needed to know what type of train pulled the underground carriages in 1886 and how long did it take to get to a particular station. I contacted the London Transport Museum and in 24 hours I had answers to my questions (steam trains and 4 minutes!) along with copies of timetables from the time. People are so generous with information and it’s wonderful.

What does your daily writing routine look like?

Unfortunately, every day is different as I work part-time and life and three children make a lot of demands on my time. However, if possible, I try to write on my days at home and sometimes, if I’m not too tired I can do a little editing on work nights. My dream would be to write full time.

Who are your writing inspirations?

Oh dear, this is a pretty long list. As mentioned above, I adore Dorothy L Sayers and PD James for crime and my biggest influence with regard to the historical aspect would have to be Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer (they created such wonderful characters in authentic settings). When I’m feeling low, Heyer is my go-to read to cheer me up.

What was the first historical novel you read?

Pride and Prejudice was the first historical novel I read as it was on the syllabus for my state exams when I was 15. As it happened there was a BBC adaptation on the tv at the time (the one prior to Colin Firth’s version - ok, you can now guess my age!!) and I fell for the broody Mr Darcy. But my love of historical fiction was truly ignited by my English teacher. Her insights made the book come alive and I was hooked straight away.

What are three things people may not know about you?

1. I am a horticulturist and built a show garden at Bloom, the Irish equivalent of The Chelsea Flower Show.
2. I am a mosquito magnet!
3. I love writing ghost stories but can’t watch or read anything like that at all - yes, I’m a complete wuss!

What historical time period do you gravitate towards the most with your personal reading?

I deliberately don’t read too much in the era I write in anymore as I don’t want to be influenced too much by what others are writing. However, the odd Victorian or Edwardian era piece usually gets slipped in now and again. I do enjoy a good Regency romance, too. Although I love reading the history of the Tudor era I tend not to read any fiction from that time. So, after 19th and early 20th centuries I’d most likely plum for Roman and medieval and I’m quite interested in Queen Anne (she doesn’t seem to get much press compared to Elizabeth I or Victoria).

Lastly, what are you working on next?

The sequel to No Stone Unturned is in its second draft and I hope to publish it before year end. The next instalment is entitled, Footprints in the Sand, and is set in Egypt. My heroine Lucy finds herself embroiled in the machinations and professional jealousies of rival English and French Egyptologists. When a prominent member of the profession is found murdered, Lucy must keep her wits about her to solve the case and avoid meeting a similar fate.

That sounds amazing, I can't wait for more Lucy! Thank you for spending time with us today! 

No Stone Unturned by Pam Lecky

Publication Date: June 28, 2019
eBook; 286 Pages

Series: The Lucy Lawrence Mysteries, Book 1
Genre: Historical Mystery

A suspicious death, stolen gems, and an unclaimed reward: who will be the victor in a deadly game of cat and mouse?

London October 1886: Trapped in a troubled marriage, Lucy Lawrence is ripe for an adventure. But when she meets the enigmatic Phineas Stone, over the body of her husband in the mortuary, her world begins to fall apart.

When her late husband’s secrets spill from the grave, and her life is threatened by the leader of London’s most notorious gang, Lucy must find the strength to rise to the challenge. But who can she trust and how is she to stay out of the murderous clutches of London’s most dangerous criminal?

Available on Amazon

About the Author

Pam is an Irish writer of historical fiction with a particular love of the late Victorian era and early 20th century. She is fascinated by all things 19th century, from food and clothes to architecture and social history. She is patiently awaiting the invention of time travel, but in the meantime, indulges her love of the past by writing about it.

Her debut novel, The Bowes Inheritance, was awarded the BRAG Medallion in 2017. It was shortlisted for the Carousel Aware Prize 2016; made 'Editor's Choice' by the Historical Novel Society; long-listed for the Historical Novel Society 2016 Indie Award; and chosen as a Discovered Diamond in February 2017.

In April 2018, Pam published an anthology of some previously published short reads, along with some new work. Her collection of short stories is entitled, Past Imperfect, and features stories set in such diverse settings as WW1 Dublin, the sinking of the Lusitania and a lonely haunted lighthouse.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 5
Review & Interview at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, August 6
Review at Books In Their Natural Habitat

Wednesday, August 7
Excerpt at Words and Peace
Guest Post at Short Books and Scribes

Thursday, August 8
Review & Guest Post at Gwendalyn_Books_

Friday, August 9
Review at Bibliophile Reviews

Sunday, August 11
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Monday, August 12
Feature at Coffee and Ink
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books
Review & Interview at Jorie Loves a Story


During the Blog Tour, we are giving away two copies of No Stone Unturned by Pam Lecky! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on August 12th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open internationally.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

No Stone Unturned

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