Meet the Characters – Jennifer Arden from Safe and Sound by Philippa East.

My guest this week is author Philippa East whose gripping and suspenseful novel, Safe and Sound, will be published on 18th February. Philippa is interviewing Jennifer Arden, the protoganist from the novel. Let’s take a look at the cover and the blurb.

Book blurb:

In a small London bedsit, a radio is playing. A small dining table is set for three, and curled up on the sofa is a body…

Jenn is the one who discovers the woman, along with the bailiffs. All indications suggest that the tenant – Sarah Jones – was pretty, charismatic and full of life.

So how is it possible that her body has lain undiscovered for ten whole months?

Here’s Philippa’s interview with Jennifer Arden

Hi Jenn – or do you prefer Jennifer? Thank you for chatting with me today.

Hi, it’s no problem. My boss has given me a little extra time for my lunchbreak today, so I’ve got fifteen minutes or so. And, um, Jenn is fine … It’s usually only my dad who calls me Jennifer.

Tell us a little bit about your work. Do you still enjoy it?

I’m a housing manager for a housing association in London. It’s a … pretty ordinary job, really. Nothing special or fancy. I arrange the tenancies, deal with issues in the apartments, make sure deposits and rents are … you know… up to date. I like helping people. I like trying to make sure everything is properly organised. So … yep.

And so you live in London?

Yes. South London – Brixton. It’s … nice. I mean, it was kind of overwhelming when I first moved here; London can feel like such a big, busy city. I didn’t know anyone when I first arrived and … I’d never lived on my own before. Plus I had Charlie to look after.


My son. Nine years old and he’s such a good kid, I love him to bits. I mean … sometimes I have some worries about him, but I see my GP about that and she’s very good at reassuring me. That mostly keeps us on track.

Speaking of which, I know you had rather a stressful time earlier this year. Obviously it’s been covered a lot in the papers since the inquest, but you were there from the very start, weren’t you? You were there when they discovered Sarah Jones’ body?


Yes. It was … very shocking. I wasn’t prepared to experience anything like that. My boss was very good about it, very … supportive. But, looking back now, I think maybe I suffered some kind of … shock? I had all these reactions I couldn’t make sense of. And I didn’t really have anyone I could talk to about it. Friends or … my parents … [shrugs, trails off]

Do you think that was part of why you were so desperate to find out what happened?

[frowns; looks thoughtful]

You know what? Maybe. I guess I needed … something. The police did their investigation, but it never felt like enough. There were still so many missing pieces. Maybe I just needed my own questions to have answers. Maybe I just needed my world to make sense again.

I understand that, overall, it all took quite a toll on your health. How are you doing now, Jenn?

[laughs nervously] Oh! Much better, I think. And Charlie – well he’s doing really great. I mean, I really learned a lot about myself from this whole episode. Things that I … hadn’t really addressed before. So I’m probably doing better now than ever. [Laughs again, checks her phone.] Like – did I mention? Alistair and I see a lot of each other these days, after we got to know each other over Sarah. And Marianne and I – we keep in touch now too. Right now though, I should probably be getting back. Abayomi, my boss, will be wondering where I am… 

Oh, okay. Well thank you for speaking with me. I appreciate your time!

Sure. No problem. [Smiles brightly.] I’ll … see you around.

Here’s what some readers are saying about ‘Safe and Sound‘.

‘So compelling and beautifully written, and gives the reader a real insight into the issues of anxiety and loneliness.’ Sunday Times bestselling author Debbie Howells

‘An atmospheric, page-turning portrait of isolation and mental fragility combining heart-rending sensitivity with sock-it-to-’em twists.’ Helen Monks Takhar, author of Precious You

‘In this taut, tantalizing suspense, Philippa East constructs a seamless plot with a breathless pace. Safe and Sound is gripping, spellbinding, and completely addictive. East is a stunning, must-read voice in the thriller genre.’ Samantha M. Bailey, author of USA Today and #1 national bestseller Woman on the Edge

Buy links: (supporting independents): 



Meet Philippa

Author bio:

Philippa East is a fiction writer based in Lincolnshire. Her debut novel Little White Lies was shortlisted for the CWA ‘New Blood’ Award and her second novel Safe and Sound will be released in February 2021. In her day job, Philippa works as a Clinical Psychologist and therapist. You can connect with Philippa on Twitter (@philippa_east) and find her author profile here:

Twitter handle: @philippa_east

Amazon Author Page

Thanks for dropping by to talk to us about your book, Philippa. Wishing you many sales.

The Stranger In My Bed is available as an ebook, audio book and paperback. Amazon:  

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