Saturday, August 6, 2011

Shalini Boland, author of "Hidden"

Shalini Boland delivers a fantastic paranormal romance in Hidden, with vivid characters and a story that delivers you to the past and the present.

I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I’m not usually a fan of the vampire genre, but Hidden is not your typical vampire story. Her ability to tell two stories that are at first separate, then come together through the passage of time had me hooked. I couldn’t put it down.

Boland creates her own mythology in a far away land, then brings us to the present in vivid detail. At first I had trouble with the slang used by the present day characters, then I realized how important this was to her character development. Fantastic. And her ability to capture the dialect of the characters from long ago was perfect. She brought them together in a way that meshed both stories together, keeping it interesting to the very last.

In the end, she leaves the reader wanting more, and the door open to a sequel. Personally, I can’t wait!

Shalini was able to share more with me in this interview:

First, a little about Shalini Boland

Before kids, I was a singer songwriter signed to Universal Music. But writing fiction has taken over my life and now I’m a mother of two noisy boys and an author of teen novels. I write the kinds of books I love to read - gripping adventures with a sprinkling of romance and a spattering of horror.

Where did the idea for Hidden come from (what inspired you?)

I’ve loved vampire novels ever since I read the Anne Rice books in the early nineties. The inspiration for Hidden came from a newspaper article about a family who had to leave their house due to a bat infestation. There was a local outcry as the bats were protected by law and the family could no longer live there. I thought: Hmm, bats in the attic … how about vampires in the basement.

I used to live in a very old house in London which had a large basement, very much like the one in my novel. I was always terrified of going down there and I can still remember the musty smell and the grey stone walls. It wasn't hard to imagine all kinds of terrible things lurking down there - awful creatures, ghosts, things bricked up in the wall...

Is this your first (second,third) vampire genre novel?

This is my first vampire novel, but I have books two and three 
planned out and partly written.

What other books have you written?

My latest teen novel, Outside, is a post-apocalyptic romance thriller set in the near future where everyone lives in closed-off communities behind perimeter fences. When Riley’s sister is murdered, she swears to track down the killer and goes out beyond the perimeter where the UK is lawless and dangerous.

How/when do you write?  Do you have a schedule, routine?

I never have enough time. I don’t know what’s going on in my life, but I seem to be getting busier and busier doing nothing. I need to get back to a proper schedule. Once my youngest son starts school later this year, I should be able to devote my mornings to writing. 

At the moment, I just grab a few minutes here and there.
When I am lucky enough to get a few hours to myself, there’s no set-in-stone process. I usually just sit down and start typing. I like to get the whole story down and then, once I have the bones, I’ll go back over it a gazillion times to edit.

Do you write on a computer? Tablet?  Pen and Paper?

I like to write on an A4 pad and then transfer it to my laptop. There’s something more friendly and less business-like about writing on paper - the pressure’s off!

Do you have a day job - what is it? 

I’m a mother of two young boys and I try to grab rare moments of peace to write. Otherwise, I scribble with the madness going on around me.

Tell us about your family life - where you live, what you all do for fun.

The boys go stir crazy indoors and the noise levels are ridiculous, so we try to get out as much as possible. Luckily we live ten minutes from the coast and twenty minutes from the forest, so there are plenty of opportunities to let them loose! (I usually stick a notebook in my bag for while they’re climbing trees or building wigwams).

Are you working on something new?

I’m writing Thicker Than Blood book two in the Marchwood Vampire Series. People are emailing and messaging me daily to ask when it will be published. I don’t have a date yet, but I’m hoping it will be later this year.

Do you have an author who inspired you to write?

There is no one author who inspired me. I’m in awe of those authors who can weave multiple plot lines with ease, whose characters evoke strong emotions and who can keep you guessing till the end. A few of my favourites are Carlos Ruis Zafon, Douglas Kennedy, Stephenie Meyer, Suzanne Collins and Paullina Simons.

Do you have a favorite author to read?  Favorite book?

Paullina Simons’ Bronze Horseman trilogy and Jean M Auel’s Clan of the Cave Bear series. I’ve read them more than once and I’m sure I’ll read them again – it feels like chatting with old friends

Where is your favorite place to visit/vacation?

The Amalfi Coast in Italy. Ravello is heaven on earth and Positano is divine. Everywhere you look you see beauty – lemon groves, wrought iron balconies, blue green mountains. Just gorgeous. I want to be there now.

Favorite way to blow off steam/exercise/have fun?

I’d love to say something really adventurous and extreme here, but it’s probably just spending time out and about with my family and friends. And I like a game of tennis.

Visit Shalini online at

Thank you Shalini for sharing Hidden with Page Readers


  1. I love to read about other writers.

  2. It's true what she says about getting down a proper writing schedule. It helps ^_^