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There Is No Perfect Way To Exist Or Heal

Author Interview H. Noah

Bluebird At My Window follows two lawyers as they work through the traumatic facts surrounding the case while dealing with their own. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

It’s funny, the start of Bluebird actually started in a creative writing class back in college around 2011. A writing prompt had us draw a color and an animal, then create a story from that pairing. I drew blue and bird and started writing the letter from Ann (the letter that shows up during the trial in the book). From there the idea for Arthur sprung up and for a while the story was just his. But overtime I added more perspectives until I had four of the five (Arthur, Richard, Marie, and Maddie).

It wasn’t until I read The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath that the real focus of the book came to me (mental health and processing trauma) as well as the importance of Diane’s story. As soon as I finished reading The Bell Jar I wrote the majority of Diane’s perspective and revisioned the story to better reflect the new direction of the book. I had already been building to the main focus of the story without realizing it but still needed to fine tune certain aspects.

This book is chilling and emotional. What drew you to the genre of dark contemporary and psychological fiction?

I think it drew itself to me to be honest. I’ve always been fascinated by the human mind, why people decide to do the best and worst things and what drives those decisions. For me the human experience is rarely black and white or just good or bad, so it was important to me to show the greys within my characters. To bring understanding to each without glorifying their more hurtful actions or decisions. When the focus of Bluebird became clear I let myself drift into the worst and best within each of them and when I finished writing I realized these two genres was where I ended up.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

It was important to me to highlight the individuality in responses to both mental health and trauma as well as unique lived experiences For each character. I gave my full attention to each with research, even if it covered topics that I had some background in. I also had several sensitivity readings done on the overall content with more focus on characters with lived experiences I did not have personal insight into in order to make the characters as realistic as possible.

In the end I was hoping readers would be able to find a character they connected with or have a part of the story speak to them. Something that could make them feel less alone and see that there is no perfect way to exist or heal.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

The main project I’m working on is a Queer Historical Fiction which focuses on found family, finding comfort in your own skin, and the idea that soulmates aren’t always the people you fall in love with but the people who help you fall in love with yourself. Unfortunately the research for the project is proving to be more intensive than I first thought and will likely take more time to complete.

I am working on a second project in the meantime which I believe I can get out sooner. It is an Urban Fantasy with Horror elements. In short it will be Sapphic and about defying destiny, though as I have just started working on the first draft exact details are hard to pin down since they may still change. I’m hoping to publish it sometime in the fall of next year.

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When faced with trauma, how would you react?

Would you survive, succumb, or lose yourself to your own meaning of justice?

Ann was only seventeen when she died. She tried to be a dutiful daughter, to pray, to repent. But it wasn’t enough. Her mother, Diane, didn’t mean to kill her but when she found Ann consorting with devils, she had no choice. She believed the angels—that in the end, the water would save them both.

But every choice holds weight.

One death, and Arthur is thrown back into the work he wanted to leave. One death, and Richard must face the reality of his choices. One death, and Maddie and Marie are confronted with the hardest parts of love.

If only good intentions were enough to keep them from the carnage of their own decisions . . .

A dark contemporary fiction drenched in blood, this debut novel from H. Noah has an intricate true crime feeling with psychological depth.


Content WarningThe following book centers around processing trauma. Please be aware that it will touch upon such topics as violence, sexual assault (not overly descriptive), racism, microaggressions, misogyny, incest, and homophobia. This book also focuses on mental health and will cover depression, anxiety, PTSD, suicidal ideation, hearing voices, religious fixations, delusions, self-harm, and drug abuse.
This book is dark due to the topics covered. This is not a horror or thriller meant to scare you. Please be kind to yourself and put the book back if you are not in a good place to read any of the things mentioned above.

Bluebird At My Window

Bluebird At My Window by H. Noah is not the story of a single person, but multiple characters who found their voice in this book. All of those characters played a relevant part in the story and readers are able to understand their pains and purposes clearly.

It begins with a criminal case, the case of Ann, and the events turn more violent as time passes. Arthur and Marie are two lawyers involved in this case, and readers see the psychological impact this case has upon Arthur. Marie faces physical and sexual assault, and Arthur is also hurt while trying to help her. The trauma that follows is told in shocking detail as the author takes readers into the minds of the victims as they experience their emotions.

This complex book is a mixture of genres. It is filled with Biblical references, mystical elements, and mysteries. The author points out the racism faced by the characters, the crime, and the trauma they face, and readers will experience it firsthand. The case of Ann explores one part of the horrific event, whereas a parallel plot runs by in Arthur’s mind who wants to leave this world a better place but is unable to help much. The psychological peek into the mind of the characters provide a compelling study of human nature.

Marie and Maddie provide some instances of mental relief from the dark themes through their wholesome relationship. When Marie gets assaulted, and the trauma plagues her, it was realistic to read about the mental struggles she endured as well as the struggles of the people who love her. The acceptance of the events and the acceptance struggles surrounding entering therapy by the characters has been masterfully portrayed by the author.

Bluebird At My Window is a dark contemporary novel filled with vivid imagery and situations. Readers that enjoy psychological fiction, diving into the dark emotions of the characters, will find this a worthwhile read. Due to the graphic nature of content in this book, including emotional and physical trauma, I think this novel is intended for a mature audience.

Pages: 298 | ASIN : B09LD387NL

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Divide & Conquer

Divide & Conquer by [McKenzie Stark]

McKenzie Stark’s Divide and Conquer is a beautiful story of love and healing. It follows the life of teenager Freya Sawyer after the tragic death of her father. Overwhelmed by grief, she goes down a destructive path that eventually lands her in Arkadia Academy – a school full of delinquents.

But while she is originally irritated by this turn of events, joining the academy marks the start of her journey of healing, self-actualization, and love. She meets new friends, revisits long-abandoned talents, and finds love in the most unexpected of places. By the time the story ends, you can’t help but be proud of how far she has come.

Like in many love stories, Freya is challenged by betrayals and outright abandonment. However, she keeps going forward and eventually pulls herself together to build a meaningful life– a strong marker of how much she has learned to love herself. In this regard, the author does a good job in avoiding the cliché narrative of a heartbroken protagonist whose entire life falls apart at the loss of a romantic interest.

It is also quite heart warming how the author addresses the issue of Freya’s grief, how it has affected her decisions and how her healing correlates with a better sense of self. Coupled with how she ties this all up with Freya’s use of art for expression, this creates a holistic view of who Freya is and who she is capable of becoming.

Author McKenzie Stark has written an emotionally-charged romance novel with a solid plot and a riveting premise. While I enjoyed this novel, I thought the switch in perspectives sometimes made it hard to follow. I think I would have enjoyed the story more if it kept one perspective throughout the book. The author infuses their own voice into the story, guiding readers and telling us what will happen.

Divide and Conquer is an impassioned romance novel that is punctuated by suspenseful moments and filled with intriguing characters. Recommended for readers who want to read a rousing and sentimental love story between two alluring characters.

Pages: 289 | ASIN: B08R6PR5RT

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