About the Liam Quinn Mysteries

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A confession: I really have no idea what will happen in Quinn’s life.

When I cquinnewestSMALLreated him, I  created a character with as much of a realistic backstory and backdrop as I could, then let him go about his business. Although readers often point out to me that they like his moral redemption from his past mistakes, I just figured Quinn behaves the way most men would if they faced what he faced. Most people are decent; we sometimes forget ourselves and act indecently, but not most of the time. And that’s Quinn, in a nutshell. Liam is an average guy trying a little bit harder than he used to, in order to do the right thing by Nora, and by his folks.

As such, there are a lot of rows he could hoe, a lot of choices to make.

I get asked a lot why Quinn is a boxer, particularly because some readers don’t like violence, even in a genre fiction ‘action’ form. I can understand that; but I guess like a lot of people, Liam grew up in tough neighborhoods, where older kids sometimes made learning how to fight a prerogative. Being skilled at it surprised him as much as anyone else; I think we know by the end of book four, Quinn and the Vanishing Bride, that he’d much rather have been an artist.

At one point, anyway. In the immediacy of his stories to date, I think he’s very much still trying to figure out what he wants to be when he grows up; he sees the brawling days as being numbered, for reasons both physical and emotional, and he wants something else. But he doesn’t really knowhow to be anything other than a forger or the son of a Philadelphia cop.

Sometimes, even when we love our community and our environment, we have to fight not to become another product of it, of its conditions and pressures. Liam’s fighting that fight every day.

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