Cover Love . . . . with Linda Huber

Posted on 3rd December, 2021

This week I am delighted to welcome suspense writer Linda Huber back to my blog to introduce her latest book, Pact of Silence, by discussing its front cover illustration. Linda is a former physiotherapist who grew up in Glasgow but has lived more than half her life in Switzerland, where she writes psychological suspense novels as Linda Huber as well as feel-good novellas under her pen name Melinda Huber.


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Thank you for inviting me back to your blog, Susanna!


Pact of Silence is psychological suspense novel number eleven for me, and as some of them are now on their second cover image, I definitely have too many covers to count on my fingers. The main jobs of the cover, I think, is to convey something of what’s inside the book, and most especially, to make a potential reader look at it twice. With psychological suspense, readers probably aren’t thinking, ‘Wow, what a gorgeous cover!’ What we hope is that they think, ‘Ooh – what’s all that about?’


So, what’s Pact of Silence about? The cover shows a stained and crumpled T-shirt lying on the grass. Readers could think: ‘What’s that? Why is it there? Whose T-shirt is it?’ And most especially, ‘What’s that stain???’




In the book, not long married and newly-pregnant Emma is dumbfounded when her husband Luke announces they’re swapping houses with his parents, who’ve lived in a tiny village in the country for several decades. She’s not being given a choice about it, no – they’re moving. Emma’s more a city girl at heart, but… life in the country would be much better for the baby, wouldn’t it? So off they go to their new home, where Emma decides to dig a veggie plot in the garden. And she digs up an old plastic bag with… you’ve guessed it.


She poked around with her spade, loosening the earth around the bag until up it came, dirty and clay-streaked but more or less intact, and full of something soft. What in the name of anything was this?

Dropping the spade, Emma peered into the bag. Clothes of some kind. Why would anyone—? She shook the contents onto the grass and stared.

A dark blue tracksuit and a yellow T-shirt, a smallish one, lay crumpled at her feet.


And now it’s Emma who’s thinking: ‘What’s that? Why is it there? Whose T-shirt is it? What’s that stain???


All this in the present-day timeline. There’s also a timeline in the past, where we find out more about Luke’s life the year he’s about twelve and he and his friends join the gym club. It isn’t a pretty story. Something happens, but – no one can ever know…


We will never speak of this again. Clear? Never. Not to anyone, not one word. Not to your mums, not your dads, not to each other. If we want to go on with our lives, it’s the only way. Do you understand?’

His red, angry face peered into each boy’s eyes in turn, and they all nodded.


Emma, digging in the garden, has no idea what happened back then, but if her marriage is to survive, she’ll have to find out. But Luke’s still keeping the twenty-year-old pact of silence…


Here’s the blurb:


A fresh start for a new life

Newly pregnant, Emma is startled when her husband Luke announces they’re swapping homes with his parents, but the rural idyll where Luke grew up is a great place to start their family. Yet Luke’s manner suggests something odd is afoot, something that Emma can’t quite fathom.


Too many secrets, not enough truths

Emma works hard to settle into her new life in the Yorkshire countryside, but a chance discovery increases her suspicions. She decides to dig a little deeper.


Be careful what you uncover

Will Emma find out why the locals are behaving so oddly? Can she discover the truth behind Luke’s disturbing behaviour? Will the pact of silence ever be broken?


Pact of Silence is published by Hobeck Books, and the cover is by Jayne Mapp Designs. Jayne created the cover from photos she took herself, experimenting in her garden with a T-shirt stained with tea. That’s cover love for you!


Pact of Silence on Amazon



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Big thanks as always for having me on your blog, Susanna! x