Anna Bailey was born in Bristol and spent her childhood in Gloucestershire. She studied Creative Writing at Bath Spa university and wrote her first novel, Where the Truth Lies, inspired by her experience of living in small-town America after college.
In my book Where the Truth Lies, an isolated community in the Rocky Mountains struggles to cope with the disappearance of a teenage girl, Abigail Blake. The Blake family are social outcasts, and there are some who believe Abigail is better off missing, but her best friend Emma is desperate to find her. In her search, Emma uncovers the town’s underbelly of violence, bigotry, and religious control. In the end, Abigail’s disappearance leaves nobody unscathed. Having lived in several small towns myself, I find them fascinating. When you’re stuck in a place where everybody wants to know everyone else’s secrets, it can be an almost daily struggle to keep some part of yourself private, and this push and pull between secrecy and exposure creates the perfect tension for a mystery novel. Here are a few of my favorite stories about small towns hiding big secrets.