Harry Whittaker (29) has written the ending to his deceased mother’s famous book series “The Seven Sisters”.
But halfway through the book series, Riley fell ill. and June 11 last year She died of esophageal cancer55 years old.
Fans were shocked and saddened, and many took to social media to write letters to the dead — both to express their condolences, but also to ask about what happened now with the book mystery.
– The start felt a bit overwhelming because we were hit so hard. But it wasn’t me who managed my mother’s social media, it was my step-sister Olivia, says Harry Whittaker when VG met him in Oslo.
Little did Whittaker know in June 2021 that within a year her stepsister would also be suddenly and brutally taken away. 41-year-old Olivia Riley and her three dogs He was beaten and killed May this year.
– Queen Elizabeth referred to 1992 as her “Annus Horribilis”, her year of terror. But it has been mine Annus horribilis, says Whittaker, of the time after last summer.
– Shortly before my stepsister died, I also lost my grandmother, with whom I was close. I was very troubled.
The 29-year-old is asking for respect because she does not want to describe her stepsister’s dramatic death. But he is determined to tell about the last time he was with his mother.
– Mom is my best friend. It was a great shock when she died. I felt both empty and angry. The world was so much better when she was here. And she had four children.
– When did you and the family realize that your mother would not survive the disease?
– Never. We never realized it. We don’t think about it, we don’t talk about it. Mother didn’t think she was going to die either. Remember she wrote four books while she was sick, son explains.
– Mother was a bit mysterious. Although she was very ill, she always recovered. She and I thought she would be fine. All the while she was strong for others. She was brave and kept her enthusiasm and her bright mind to the end.
The two had a very special conversation on Christmas 2018.
– We sat and talked for six or seven hours about what I should do if the worst happened. Then I promised my mother that I would finish writing the last book in the “Seven Sisters” book. But at the same time, Whittaker tells her not to worry because she’s not going to die.
– And then we never talked about it again.
Three weeks ago he put the finishing touches on the work. The last book “Altas: The Story of Ba Salt”Releases worldwide on May 11.
– Mother has been very close to me while writing, even though she is not here physically. She is with me in my heart and writing the book has been a blessing to me,” says Whittaker.
– I can reveal that some of the action takes place in Norway, he says and smiles.
Private Funeral: The family thanks you for your support
Lucinda Riley’s family requests that in lieu of flowers, contributions be made to the author’s favorite charity.
Whittaker knows that millions of people are waiting for an answer Mystery. But he wasn’t nervous. By the way what he had in mind was not the readers.
– This is something I do for my mother, my great heroine, it is an honor and a pleasure. But if it had hard? yes, The May I sign, he says with a laugh about unpacking all the details and texts in the books.
– But I managed it. All the pieces of the puzzle now fit, says Whittaker, an award-winning radio presenter at BBC York and an actor in an improv theater at home in Yorkshire.
A A candid interview with VG in 2019 Told Riley about the cancer. It was the only time she allowed herself to be interviewed about the disease.
– Death does not scare me. Never did it. But I’m afraid of a relapse because chemotherapy and radiation therapy have destroyed me, said Riley, who later believed and believed he was on the road to recovery.
The son describes his mother and himself as spiritual people, with no connection to a particular religion. He does not believe in a “tall man with a beard in the sky” but a universal force.
– Mom and I have experienced so many important things in life that it would be foolish to dismiss them as coincidences. I prefer to live with the belief that there is something more than accepting that death is the end. Because I don’t think so, and neither does my mother.
Fans of Riley will be happy that there will be more books than this last one in the series. There were five more books she wrote in the 90s, then under the name Lucinda Edmonds.
– They will be restarted, so mom will be with us for a long time, says a satisfied Whittaker.
He also points to television programs. VG already wrote in 2016 Hollywood had acquired the rights For sister series.
– We are talking about a giant actor, so I am afraid to say something wrong. But Riley’s son reveals that there will be a big announcement in 2023.
Also in England, where Riley and the family have had their base for years, there are television programs.
Whittaker says a major British channel has shown interest “The Fleet House Murders”The only crime novel published after Riley’s death.
– We have decided to give them the rights to develop this universe and create an independent series. “Maybe I’ll write more books about the main character,” Whittaker reveals.
The visit to Norway was Whittaker’s first. At the weekend, he was at the Skudeneshhavn Literary Festival, and swam in the sea in November.
– It’s magical! He says laughing out loud.
– For me, it was really nice to meet my mom’s loyal readers. They loved her not only as a writer but also as a person.
On the trip to Norway is his girlfriend Lily Summerton, 26. The couple has been together for five years.
– Mom taught us in the family that we should enjoy every second of life, even the difficult moments, because they are part of the whole picture. All we know for certain is that nothing is certain. Mom said to love life and I want to do that,” says Whitaker.
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