Goodreads asked E.E. Giorgi:

Where did you get the idea for your most recent book?

E.E. Giorgi To be completely honest, the inspiration for the Track Presius mystery series was a vampire book that I picked up and found so disappointing I couldn’t get it out of my head (no, I shall never pick up a vampire book again!). I guess there is such a thing as a “negative inspiration,” because I couldn’t get over how bad the book was, and how differently I would’ve written the story had I been the author.

Around the same time, I discovered that most of our genome is made of genes that have lost their function. I was reading a paper on these “silent genes,” when it occurred to me that while vampires do not exist, predators like lions and wolves not only exist—their genes are still embedded in our genome. And that’s when that alternative story brewing in my head took a completely new angle.

The idea for the main character, Detective Track Presius, came from the following question: what if the ancestral genes we have in our DNA suddenly turned on? Our predator ancestors heavily relied on their olfactory and auditory senses to hunt. Humans, instead, are most sensitive to visual stimuli. As we made the switch from olfaction to vision, evolution gradually silenced some genes and turned on others. The old genes lost their function, but they were never erased from the DNA: they became what we now call “pseudogenes.”

With CHIMERAS I took the poetic license of turning back “on” these silenced genes and created an ordinary man with extraordinary senses. The hyper-sensitivity to smells in particular has not been exploited enough in fiction, and I soon realized that it was the perfect trait for a crime investigator.

More Answered Questions

About Goodreads Q&A

Ask and answer questions about books!

You can pose questions to the Goodreads community with Reader Q&A, or ask your favorite author a question with Ask the Author.

See Featured Authors Answering Questions

Learn more