Meet the Characters – Olivia Rockwell from Her Perfect Bones by Ellery Kane

A warm welcome to author Ellery Kane,who is interviewing Olivia Rockwell, the main character from her crime thriller, Her Perfect Bones. Let’s find out a bit about the book first.


The girl’s body is curled up like a shell and almost completely buried in sand. Only her fingertips can be seen, reaching helplessly up towards an escape she will never find…

Seventeen-year-old Shelby Mayfield sits alone on a bus to Fog Harbor, California. Aside from a few items of clothing, all she has with her is twenty-two dollars, the ragdoll she’s kept since kindergarten, and the devastating secret she’s been hiding.

How long will it be before her family realizes she’s gone?

Can anyone see the fresh bruise on her cheek beneath the makeup?

Perhaps she was a fool to believe the person she is meeting in this remote little town could help her…

When a girl’s body is found hidden in a barrel in a woodland cabin, the local police are at a loss. The film from an old camera found looped around her neck is their only lead, but Criminal Psychologist Olivia Rockwell’s blood turns to ice when she recognizes the ragdoll in one of the girl’s last photographs. She used to own one just like it, and it can only mean one thing: if she doesn’t dig deep into the mind of a deadly killer from her past—her own father—more innocent lives will be in danger…

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Now let’s move on to Ellery’s interview with Olivia:

In between bites of her Number #5, Olivia opened the email from the Fog Harbor Gazette, careful not to drip the Hickory Pit’s famous barbecue sauce onto the keyboard of her laptop. A local reporter had been hounding her for weeks now, eager to profile her as part of their “Local Heroes” feature. Olivia had no desire to spill her guts in such a public forum. As a psychologist, she preferred to be the one asking the questions. And she certainly wouldn’t call herself a hero. Most days, she struggled to tell the good guys from the bad. But, there was something appealing about the idea of one-upping wise guy detective, Will Decker. Newly determined, the corner of Olivia’s mouth turned up as she perused the reporter’s questions.

Tell us about yourself. Olivia could handle a softball like that. The kind of open-ended query she posed to her inmate patients. She wiped her hands and began to type. Olivia Rockwell, age thirty five, Chief Psychologist at Crescent Bay State Prison. I grew up in Fog Harbor and graduated from Fog Harbor High. Go Sharks! They didn’t need to know she’d spent the first eight years of her life in the seedy Double Rock Projects, where her father, Mad Dog, called the shots for the Oaktown Boys street gang. Or that he’d served time for murder. I moved back to the area a few years ago. Though life in San Francisco was exciting, I missed the sound of the ocean, the smell of the redwoods, and the charm of our small town.

How did you become a forensic psychologist? After four years of grad school, an internship at Jail Psychiatric Services in San Francisco, and a dissertation on the demographic predictors of street gang membership, I earned my Ph.D. from Stanford University. For several years, I taught a popular course in criminal psychology there. Later, I received a Special Commendation from the Federal Bureau of Investigations for my work as a criminal profiler. Too much. Olivia deleted that last line, not wanting to sound like a know-it-all. She reread her answer, unsatisfied. She suspected they wanted something a bit less academic. My goal has always beento understand why good people do bad things.

What is it like to work in a prison? Tricky question. Though the prison setting can be dangerous, it is much like a small community, where inmates live and work. I spend my days in the Mental Health Unit providing treatment to mentally ill inmates and supervising interns and staff. Total sugar-coated B.S. but best to keep it politically correct, knowing Warden Blevins would certainly see her response. She didn’t trust that guy as far as she could throw him. Turns out the criminals aren’t the only criminals in the joint.

Tell us about your partnership with the Fog Harbor Police Department. Olivia paused to take a swig of cold beer, contemplating her answer. After helping to solve a serial murder, Chief Flack invited me to join the department as a consulting psychologist. I assist the homicide detectives on their most challenging cases. She omitted the nitty gritty details of going toe-to-toe with Detective Decker. They rarely saw eye to eye. But, together they’d managed to catch a few bad guys. We make a great team!

What interests do you have outside of work? Running keeps me sane. There’s a trail behind my house that leads to the Little Gull Lighthouse. Even if it was haunted by the ghosts of the past, that lighthouse was where Olivia did her best thinking. Lately, I’ve taken up boxing. Because sometimes she just needed to hit something.

Who is your hero? My little sister, Emily. After going through a rough year, she’s following her dreams and attending art school in San Francisco. Olivia hated to think how close she’d come to losing her sister. No matter how much she loved her job, she couldn’t stand that it put a target on her back and on those closest to her. Thankfully, Em was a fighter just like her.

If you weren’t a psychologist, what job would you be doing? Tough one. Though she had enjoyed her time as a professor at Stanford, Olivia couldn’t imagine doing anything else. She pictured Detective Decker reading her answers, conjured his face. Stubbled, brooding, infuriating…okay, handsome. She couldn’t resist a good natured jab. A detective, she typed.

Meet Ellery

Short bio:

Forensic psychologist by day, author by night, Ellery Kane has been writing professionally and creatively for as long as she can remember. Real life really is stranger than fiction, so Ellery’s writing is often inspired by her day job. Before writing the Rockwell and Decker series with Bookouture, Ellery published the Legacy series for young adult readers and the Doctors of Darkness series of psychological thrillers. She was previously selected as one of ten semi-finalists in the MasterClass James Patterson Co-Author Competition. A Texan at heart, Ellery currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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Twitter: @ellerykane

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Thanks so much for dropping by to talk to us, Ellery. Wishing you many sales!

No one knows what goes on behind closed doors.


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