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Samantha and Annie Callahan are successful doubles champions – the toast of the Olympics, Wimbledon and Flushing Meadow. But their winning partnership spirals out of control when Annie’s new boyfriend announces their engagement at the Australian Open in Melbourne. 

He persuades her to ditch Samantha in favour of a singles career, but her game and rankings plummet. Samantha is left floundering. Disillusioned, her only sweet spot is the growing passion between her and Bear, the sisters’ coach. Amidst rising anger and betrayal, Samantha changes both their destinies when she does the unthinkable after a devastating Wimbledon loss. 

The sisters are driven to create new lives by confronting the past and taking control of the present. But can Samantha and Annie both win? 

I chose to make Samantha and Annie doubles tennis champions to amplify the usual sibling issues and then explore their professional partnership and personal relationships – similarities, differences, motivation, competition, abandonment, and grief – and how they each respond to the stress of constantly being under the media spotlight. What happens, when at the pinnacle of fame, it all falls apart? With dreams shattered and egos destroyed, how do they cope? 

I have an older sister and although our rapport isn’t as dramatic, or as close, for that matter, I was able to draw on our similarities and differences to bring a nuanced perspective to Samantha and Annie’s relationship. I had a lot of fun writing this story and hope The Pact resonates with readers, even if they don’t play tennis or know much about the game!

About The Author

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NOVELS: With several previously published novels under my name, Lisa Heidke, my seventh novel, Lily’s Little Flower Shop (print, ebook and audio) was published by Bloodhound Books UK in 2021 under my pen name Lisa Darcy. It has since been published in France as L’adorable boutique de fleurs de Lily, and in Italy as Il piccolo negozio di fiori di. In 2021, My Big Greek Holiday (print, eBook, and audio) was also published by Bloodhound Books UK. It has since been published in Slovenia as Dopust v Grciji. Should You Keep A Secret? (available in print and eBook) was published by Bloodhound Books UK in April 2022. 

SHORT STORIES: I contributed the short story, Esmerelda’s Heartfelt Christmas, to the anthology, The Heart Will Find A Way, published by Southern Key Press, in February 2024. 

OTHER: I have taught Creative Writing at the Australian Writers’ Centre in Sydney and South Coast Writing Centre, Wollongong, present workshops and writing retreats, and have been on panels at RWA conferences, GenreCon, and many Australian and international writers’ festivals. In March, 2024, I facilitated a weeklong writing retreat, Unleash Your Creativity, in Tuscany, Italy.






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