Twitter and a Chilling Murder Inspired Lauren Beukes’ Book

Lauren Beukes’ guide The Shining Women is the inspiration behind Apple TV+‘s Shining Girls. Watching the crime thriller, many people are curious about who Beukes’ character Harper (Jamie Bell) relies on. It seems a real-life homicide and a suggestion on Twitter impressed the creator’s guide and subsequent Apple TV+ sequence.

[SPOILER ALERT: Spoilers ahead for Shining Girls]. 

Elisabeth Moss in ‘Shining Girls’ Season 1 Episode 4: ‘Attribution’ | Apple TV+

Harper is a time-traveling serial killer impressed by Twitter

Harper Curtis, who can manipulate time, tortures Elisabeth Moss’ character Kirby in Apple TV+’s Shining WomenAn actual serial killer wasn’t the idea for Beukes’ Harper, however a tweet did encourage his potential to journey by way of time. 

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“I got the idea on Twitter,” Beukes informed Lightspeed Magazine. She elaborated: 

“I was messing around … and I threw it out in the middle of a conversation. It was banter with a random stranger that I should write a book about a time-traveling serial killer. I was like, ‘No, wait! … that would be amazing. I could do something really fun with that.’” 

Lauren Beukes’ ‘The Shining Girls’ was impressed by a buddy’s homicide 

Harper is probably not based mostly on a actual serial killer, however a actual homicide did encourage The Shining Women guide. “[My cleaning lady’s] 23-year-old daughter … was murdered by her boyfriend,” Beukes informed the outlet.

“Her name was Thomokazi Zazayokwe. Her abusive boyfriend stabbed her, poured boiling water over her head, and then he locked his shack and walked away.”

Zazayokwe was discovered 5 days later by police, who rushed her to the hospital. “She had third-degree burns that had become infected, there were flies thick on her skin, and she was in absolute agony,” Beukes continued. “She was in and out of the hospital over the next four months until finally, she died from her injuries.” 

‘The Shining Girls’ guide is cathartic for Lauren Beukes 

Wanting justice for Zazayokwe, Beukes helped the household search authorized counsel so they may go after the boyfriend. Nevertheless, the case acquired thrown out resulting from a lack of proof. 

“The prosecutor … told us that he couldn’t prosecute the case,” stated Beukes. “He showed us the single sheet of paper that was the police file, and he said, ‘This is the worst bit of investigating I’ve ever seen. The only person they bothered to interview was the victim, and she’s dead. This guy can stand up in court, and he can say absolutely anything he wants, and he’ll get away with it. I will have to believe him because I have no evidence to the contrary.’”

Bothered by the dearth of justice, Beukes referred to as upon her author pals to assist draw consideration to the case. “Because I’m middle class, I have a voice and I know how to use it, and I have friends who are journalists, I got the story covered by major newspapers,” she stated. “I did manage to get the case reopened.”

Regardless of Beukes’ efforts, the household didn’t need to face their daughter’s loss of life once more, in order that they dropped the case. For Buekes, “[The Shining Girls] is, in part, a way of exorcising that … [and] the terrible violence against women and men that we see in society.”

Watch episodes of Shining Girls on Apple TV+.

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