In the shadow of Thornton
A new novel set in the Daintree has just hit the bookshelves.
Called “Daintree”, it is by the extraordinarily prolific NSW north coast author Annie Seaton.
She describes her work as romantic suspense, but there is a dose of environmental activism in there as well.
The former school principal, who retired early and turned author about five years ago, and her husband travel to different parts of Australia in their holiday to research her books.
Several years ago Ms Seaton signed a three-book deal with major publisher, Pan Mcmillan. The first book, Kakadu Sunset, has been out for a while.
For the next one, Ms Seaton and her husband hitched up their little caravan back in Nambucca Heads and drove to Wonga Beach where they stayed for a few weeks in 2014.
“I was absolutely fascinated by Thornton Peak,” Ms Seaton says.
“A lot of my story is set at the base of Thornton Peak. I’ve got a character set there, an Aboriginal woman, she’s a bit of a bush healer . . .
“A lot of the suspenseful part of the book happens in the rainforest there.”
Wildlife smuggling, which she had read about, is also an inspiration for the plot.
Among the key characters are Emma, a follow on from the Kakadu book who moved to the Daintree, and a male doctor from Sydney who moved to the Daintree to make a new life.
Ms Seaton has written a couple of million words in five years – 26 books in fact. “Writing comes easily to me,” she says. When she retired she sought a publisher and found a New York publisher, Lyrical Press, in just five weeks.
The mixture of hard copy and e-books has seen her become one of the best read authors. “My first 15 books were e-books and they did very well – I actually reached No. 1 on the Amazon US romance series.
“I’ve been in the top 100 authors on Amazon US two or three times. It’s been a lovely surprise.
“I’m one of those very rare authors – and I pinch myself – that I have never had a rejection from a publisher.”
She said one reviewer of Kakadu Ssunset described it as eco-adventure. “One of my favourite things is descriptive writing,” she says. “I have travelled a great deal but find Australia is the most amazing place of all.
“What I’m trying to convey is our beautiful Australian landscape to those readers who can never get to those places.”
Author Annie Seaton