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Monday, March 04, 2024

At 3 a.m., as the rest of the world sleeps, Lisa Unger is up at her desk writing her next New York Times bestselling novel.

The latest book to come out of this creative process is “Ink and Bone,” a psychological thriller set in the Hollows, a town outside of New York City.

Unger will be in Gainesville to talk about her latest work, released just this week, Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at the Alachua County Library Headquarters Branch, according to Chris Culp, the public services division director.

“We made a commitment to the community to bring nationally renowned authors, with less bookstores around,” Culp said.

Finley Montgomery, a new character for Unger, is a wild child and has a gift she wishes she could return. Montgomery awakens in the Hollows, a town the author created after writing her novel “Fragile.”

“Fragile” was published in 2010 based off a real-life event in Unger’s life. In high school, a girl she knew was abducted and killed. Throughout the years the experience stayed with her so strongly she wrote about it.

After the first book was published, she felt the Hollows was developing a strong personality as a place where anything could happen, even things that seem impossible. She started to obsess about this town.

“Of course when that happens that means there is more to say, more to write about,” Unger said.

She began to explore the characters more, and the town with the world created itself along the way.

“As long as I am still thinking about it and wondering about it, it is going to end up on the page,” she said.

Characters created in Unger’s books come from her imagination, observation and sometimes versions of herself.

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She was born in Connecticut but lived all over the world growing up because of her dad’s job. In college, Unger decided to study writing and literature in New York and began her first novel. After college, she stayed in New York and began to work for a publishing company.

“A few years into this publishing job I had an epiphany,” Unger said. “The only thing I wanted to do I wasn’t really doing anymore.”

The one thing Unger wanted to do was write, and it was slowly fading away.

“Five years or 10 years down the road I am going to have to look back and say, ‘You never even tried to do it,’ and I just couldn’t live with that,” she said.

During this time, she became a closet writer dedicating her time to writing every day. Ten years later, Unger finally finished her first novel, “Angel Fire,” which was published in 2002.

Unger, who now lives in Clearwater, Florida, with her husband and daughter, tends to write within the psychological thriller genre, which she said answers questions she has about the universe.

As for those looking to follow in her bestselling footsteps, Unger advises, “The only thing you need to be a writer is write.”

Associates from Books-A-Million will be at the library this weekend to sell Unger’s recent book “Ink and Bones.”

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