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CVFW Member Linda Kane interviews Tierney James

Hi there, I just finished writing my first draft of The Secret Caves of Lost Gold and will now be working on the edits. It is the sequel to The Black Madonna…A Popes Deadly Obsession.

But right now I’d like to introduce you to my dear friend Tierney James who has written an incredible book, Black Mamba that is a Must read this holiday season.

Black Mamba

Your setting takes place in Africa. What can you tell us about that?

Even as a child I found Africa fascinating. Whether it was due to movies and television programs spinning irresistible adventures or important teachers in my life, Africa held mysteries I longed to explore. When my husband proposed to me I said “yes” on the condition he’d take me to Africa by our 25th anniversary. He agreed. Luckily, he was a mine engineer and often traveled. When he found out he would be going to Africa, I tagged along. After all—he promised!

How did you come up with the title Black Mamba?

What could be scarier than being in the middle of nowhere when one of the most dangerous snakes in the world bites you? Will there be an antidote? I wanted to weave such an occasion into my book. It is very much like a dictator who catches you unaware and intends to protect himself.

Did you use some of your experiences to weave into this story?

Yes. I had the good sense to keep a journal while I traveled to Botswana to help me remember the sights, sounds and experiences presented to me on my safari. The leopard scene sprung from that as did the elephant Rambo and hippo Amadeus. The tent I described was actually very similar to my accommodations as was the bathroom. Not fun at night!

Can you share a little about your time in Africa?

My husband needed to attend an international mining conference in South Africa. We went early to go on a photographic safari. It was at the end of August, first of September, which makes it the end of winter for them.

What is the real Botswana like today?

This is a very safe country with a strong economic backbone, unlike many African countries. There isn’t a lot of crime but poaching does happen in the bush.

Why do you write the Enigma Series?

I love the thought of an ordinary woman, a mother, a teacher being able to do something amazing. I also love to share how geopolitical events can affect everyone.

Are any of the Enigma characters like you? If so which one and how?

Tessa Scott sprung from some of my experiences while I lived in her town of Grass Valley, California. People always mistaken me for someone named “Melanie”. I often wondered why. Was she in trouble? In danger? A drug dealer? So I took some of my personal experiences and wove them into this woman. People sometimes say she reminds them of me.

In this series you often go to places more people will never go. Why?

I was a geography teacher and am fascinated by faraway places. I love to read about them. One of my favorite books is The World’s Most Dangerous Places by Robert Young Pelton.

Will the Enigma team continue their adventures in a follow up book?

Absolutely. I’ve got about four more sketched out. Enigma #6 brings back a character a lot of ladies will be glad to see again. I also hope to have an Enigma Christmas in 2019.

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