My life in books - LM Chilton

LM Chilton is a journalist and former date-oholic who mined more than 100 dates for inspiration for his debut novel. Don’t Swipe Right, a murder mystery meets rom-com set in Eastbourne, is out now in paperback (Head of Zeus, £9.99)

The book I loved as a child

My mum used to read The Berenstain Bears and the Spooky Old Tree to me before bed. It’s scary but the bears always got home safely in the end. I like a thriller with a happy ending.

The book that inspired me as a teenager

During a rainy family camping trip in the 1990s, I found a copy of Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris, left behind by a careless camper. It poured the whole week, but I barely noticed. I sat in my dad’s car with the heater on, absorbed by the terrifying horror that I was far too young to be reading! Maybe that inspired me to write about serial killers as an adult, although mine are a little less gruesome than Hannibal Lecter.

The book I’ve never finished

100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, not because I didn’t like it – in fact it’s just the opposite. I re-read it from the beginning every summer, but always stop halfway. I never want to finish it because once I’m done, it will be over forever.

The book that moved me most

Maus by Art Spiegelman is simultaneously the most moving, compelling and devastating book ever written.

The book I’m reading now

Yellowface by R F Kuang is an immensely readable, taut thriller, but also has a lot to say about the world we live in today. Plus, it’s funny too. I’m hoping my novel, Don’t Swipe Right, can pull off the same trick.