So August has been and gone, so it’s back to school for little old me. Multitudes of young people to be educated in the ways of Mathematics – such fun. I mean that, by the way, I absolutely love my job to bits. But, of course, one thing that I can do more of over the summer break without teaching to get in the way is read. Read and read and read. And this month, that equated to twenty books (including a couple left over from last month), plus a few more Sherlockian shorts, an interview and a film review. Busy busy.
But, of course, it’s time as ever for the Book Of The Month – the Puzzly for August 2015. But that’s a lot to choose from.
Captain Charles Rathlyn, a racehorse trainer, has everything staked on his prize nag Silver Eagle, but disaster strikes in the final furlong and he loses everything. Looking around for a buyer, he encounters Kate Wyngold, the owner of the winning horse, who promptly offers to buy Silver Eagle and give him a job as the trainer of her stables. For Kate is on the lookout for a second husband and Captain Rathlyn fits the bill.
Soon they are married but Charles, while happy, realises that he is not in love with his wife. It is a practical marriage of convenience in his eyes – he has no concept of being in love, until he falls for Anne Faery, a local girl. And then one night, Kate, apparently while sleepwalking, takes a fatal fall over the bannister to the floor below…
Saddleworth Moor and Rose Sutton, the wife of a local farmer, is found with her throat ripped out. She was patrolling the moor, looking for an animal that she feared was preying on the sheep, but it seems that the creature has a taste for something new.
As the local press begins to bubble with stories of an ABC (Alien Big Cat), DI Jon Spicer isn’t convinced – is it possible that the killer is rather more human? But when panther hairs are identified as being on the first body, and the “beast” strikes again, this time closer to the city, is it possible the police are hunting a wild animal? Is it a human killer? Or is it a bit of both? It seems that the sins of the past are never truly forgotten or forgiven.
1962, Brighton. Colin Crampton, the crime reporter of the Brighton Evening Chronicle, is going through a slow patch, so he’s even willing to follow up a tip concerning the disappearance of the owner of the local crazy golf course. Well, it’s better than another story on the lewd goings-on under the pier…
He wasn’t expecting to find a story on Septimus Darke, the local crime-lord. He wasn’t expecting to find a story on corruption in local government. And he certainly wasn’t expecting to find a dead body. Now he faces a race against time to find a murder – and a front page story. He’s got a deadline to meet after all…
Something a little different for the blog today – an interview with an up and coming writer. Admittedly, that’s an up and coming writer with 22 books behind them, but Headline Murder is his first foray into crime fiction. It’s the first in the Crampton Of The Chronicle series of murder mysteries. My review of the book will be up tomorrow, which happens to be the publication date for the book as well – what a coincidence!
Anyway, on with the interview which, technically, Peter conducted with himself, not me. But if it proves popular, maybe I’ll start pestering some more of the authors out there. You know who you are! So, over to Peter.
Thirteen Torland Place, Eborby (a thinly disguised York) is a house with a dark history. In the nineteenth century Obediah Shrowton murdered five members of his family with an axe. Twelve years ago, two teenage girls disappeared in the wood behind the house. And now Death is stalking the house itself.
DI Joe Plantagenet is called in when some DNA trace evidence from the girls’ disappearance points towards the local Member of Parliament. But when one of the students who live in the house is discovered murdered, with her tongue cut out, it seems as if the past dangers are suddenly very real…
Detective Inspector Vera Stanhope is “enjoying” a rare visit to the gym – and whilst in the sauna, realises with a shock that her fellow occupant, Jenny Lister, isn’t asleep, as she first assumed, but dead. Strangled.
As Vera and her team start their investigations, links start to form between Jenny’s death and a case that she was involved with some years previously. Jenny was a social worker and in one of the cases that she was indirectly responsible for, a young mother drowned her child in the bath.
Vera thrives when she has a case to investigate – work is the main part of her life – but might her enthusiasm for tracking down a murderer put someone else in danger?