Idelle Kursman was born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. She earned her bachelor's degree from Boston College and her master's from William Paterson University. Idelle taught for many years and was a correspondent for a local newspaper. She has written articles for various publications and writes regularly on her website. She has a loved one with autism and after watching the movie Taken five years ago, she felt compelled to write a novel about human trafficking. Since Idelle loves thrillers, especially if it is a book she cannot put down, she sought to give readers this experience in her debut novel. At the same time, Idelle wants to raise awareness for autism and the international human trafficking crisis. She is getting her second novel ready for publication. Idelle lives with her family in New Jersey. She would like to personally thank her readers who have taken the time to review True Mercy.
What writers influenced you?
I loved Steig Larsson's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series. They were not only page-turners, but I particularly admired Larsson's ability to weave an engaging story while at the same time draw attention to social issues. I also find Camilla Lacksberg mysteries very powerful because she writes about ordinary people in Sweden and makes their lives fascinating, making the reader feel empathy and caring about the characters. In True Mercy, I also wrote about ordinary people. I wanted readers to be touched by the widowed father dealing with his son with autism and to understand the challenges these families experience. I also wanted to put a face on the brutal world of human trafficking and show how these young women are kidnapped and forced to work as prostitutes to stay alive.
What inspired you to write about autism?
I have a loved one with autism. I know how difficult and stressful it is for families to take care of these individuals. I wanted to give readers a glimpse inside what it is like living with someone with autism and have empathy because it changes the dynamics of everyone affected by it. Autism Bedforshire, a charity organization that provides information, advice and support for people with autism and their families, summed up the challenges perfectly in one of their articles: "Loneliness, lack of friends, few social activities and little support are among the most common problems that people with autism and their families face."