I never dreamed of becoming an expert in Aztec human sacrifice. Destiny decided otherwise.
Spending a decade traveling the world looking for stories for BBC Television's documentaries unit will do that to you: knowing stuff you never wanted to know. Like how to walk on Pompeii's forbidden paths without setting off unexploded WWII bombs. Or the secret ingredient for the bushmen of Namibia's deadly poisoned arrows. Or the spell to protect yourself from evil spirits when you enter a lost city in northern Peru.
What's a girl to do with those useless, incredible facts? Not much until 2013 – even after I left television to raise my son and write novels. By 2013, I was an award-winning, bestselling author of women's fiction and romantic comedies. But the pull to revisit what I had encountered on cordoned-off archaeological sites and in nocturnal visits to museum basements was strong.
A story all came to me in a flash on a stormy summer day while looking at the cover of an old issue of National Geographic. Murder in the Great Pyramid. A master forger and a cursed mummy. A blood-soaked love story. A girl named Sistine. A year later, the first book 'The Pyramid Prophecy' was released in France, and since then 3 more have followed. The SIXTINE series has spent 500+ days on Amazon Top 100, has sold 70,000 copies and has been optioned by a major TV producer. I can't wait to share it with English-speaking readers!
As for me, after a trip around the world with my family and building a contemporary wooden house in a forest in France, I settled for the quiet life in majestic Cape Town, South Africa. These days, my thirst for escape, ancient knowledge and art is quenched by visits to museums and libraries, haunts better suited to my resolutely non-Indiana Jonesy constitution. I still write light novels, because I am a militant optimist, I am obsessed with French patisserie, and I live for Christmas.
But the dark side is where the fun is at, my black cat Solo knows all too well my penchant for gothic literature and decor. The SIXTINE saga continues, with Book 5 and a spin-off planned for 2022. And don't tell my son Oscar, but my retirement project involves buying a neo-gothic castle and studying contemporary witchcraft.
Whichever shade you pick – the light or the dark – my books have the same purpose: to sweep you off your feet to faraway places alive with mystery, imagination and wonder. And, well after you have turned the last page, to remind you how extraordinary the real world that has inspired them truly is.
Follow Rebel Books
Copyright © 2024,  Caroline Vermalle
By Pöptag Agency