A mysterious telephone call sends Horton on a complex and twisted investigation into the death of a local politician twelve years ago and uncovers a trail of lies, secrets and revenge with roots deep in he past the past. DEAD PASSAGE available in paperback, as an ebook, on Amazon Kindle and Kobo.
When I first started writing novels long ago they were in fact historical sagas. As I wrote more of them I kept finding a criminal element creeping into the story line. None of those novels have ever been published and after many rejections I turned to writing contemporary crime novels. DI Andy Horton was created in TIDE OF DEATH and published in 2006 and the rest they say is history.
But somewhere within me must have lurked that historical itch and so after nineteen contemporary crime novels I decided to scratch it. Hence Inspector Alun Ryga in DEATH IN THE COVE.
I choose the starting point for the novels as 1950 because it is a fascinating time. An era caught between the aftermath of the war and the beginning of the cultural and social revolution of the ‘swinging sixties’. Memories of the war are very strong, and the fear of more world conflicts haunt people. The Korean War is in progress and National Service has been extended. All around is the legacy of the war with bombsites and rubble, bombed out buildings and houses, abandoned military bases in the country and overgrown pillboxes and batteries littering the coast.
With the housing shortages caused by the bombing many are living in privately rented dinghy cramped bedsits and poor quality houses with little privacy, comfort and warmth. Or in prefabs, railway carriages, houseboats, or huts. The housing boom and erection of new towns and cities has yet to materialise.
Rationing of some goods is still in operation. There are severe shortages of many consumer products, ‘make-do-and-mend’ carries on as does the black market.
And there are many fractured lives – widows and widowers, mothers and fathers who have lost sons and daughters, people maimed and scarred both physically and emotionally. Others, who after experiencing the adrenalin rush of combat and a varied and exciting life, finding it hard to adjust, some seek ways to cope through alcohol, crime, and substance abuse.
Many women who worked in the war are now back at home, some pleased to be, others very much less so. They’re not expected to have careers, but jobs to tide them over before they marry and have children.
After the war came the nationalisation of the coal mines, the railways, the Bank of England and the iron and steel industry. The creation of the free National Health Service has improved the quality of medical care, especially for the elderly, women and the poor.
Policing in the 1950s was also vastly different, no mobile phones, no dashing about and no computers so it was extremely interesting to research and write from both the social and the police point of view.
1950 then, and the ensuing decade, is an interesting and fascinating era to set down my new detective, Inspector Alun Ryga.
What are your memories of the 1950s?
Newly promoted at Scotland Yard, Ryga is on his first solo investigation outside of London, he has to solve the mystery of why a man in a pin-striped suit is found murdered in an isolated cove on the Island of Portland in Dorset.
"Ryga studied the face of the dead man with interest. Death no longer had the power to shock him. He’d seen too much of it. That didn’t mean he didn’t feel sorrow, pity, anger or despair, or sometimes all four emotions and in such a swift succession that they became one. This time he felt none of these, only professional curiosity.”
Available in paperback, as an ebook, on Amazon Kindle and Kobo and also as an audio book, narrated by Jonathan Rhodes and published by B7 Media. Download the audio book.
I was delighted to entertain members of Woodlands (New Forest) Women's Institute on Wednesday 6 November 2019 with tales of the murderous goings on in my crime novels, all set against the backdrop of the sea on the South Coast of England.
My fictional sleuths have been busy solving twenty crimes. There's the flawed and rugged Portsmouth copper, DI
Andy Horton, (14) my undercover investigator, Art Marvik a former Royal
Marine Commando (3) my two standalone thrillers, Adam Green in IN COLD DAYLIGHT and Alex Albury in IN
FOR THE KILL and my most recent sleuth, Inspector Alun Ryga who is introduced in my new 1950 set mystery, DEATH IN THE COVE.
I talked about how locations provide the
inspiration for my mystery crime novels; how I develop the plots;
create the characters and how I conduct the research. Following my talk there was a lively question and answer session , a book signing and yummy homemade cake!
DEAD PASSAGE is the latest Inspector Andy Horton mystery to be published, number 14 in the series. Available in paperback, as an ebook, on Amazon Kindle and Kobo.
Woodlands WI Pauline Rowson entertaining members with tales of her fictional sleuths
Woodlands WI Pauline Rowson talking about her crime novels
Woodlands WI Pauline Rowson explaining how she plots her novels
A mysterious telephone call sends Horton on a complex and twisted investigation into the death of a local politician twelve years ago and uncovers a trail of lies, secrets and revenge with roots deep in the past.
"A detective novel in the tradition of Rankin and Harvey." Mystery People Magazine
DEATH IN THE COVE is published in paperback, ebook, on Amazon Kindle and Kobo and as an audio book narrated by Jonathan Rhodes and published by B7 Media.
England 1950, a country still struggling to come to terms with peace in the grip of austerity and rationing.
When the body of a man wearing a pinstriped suit is found in a secluded bay on Portland Island, Dorset Scotland Yard detective, Inspector Alun Ryga is sent to investigate.
'Death in the Cove is a great read and one I recommend to any crime fans.' BH Living Magazine
An investigation into a body found floating in the sea off Portsmouth harbour throws DI Andy Horton's capabilities into question. Not o...
Very excited to hear an extract from the #audiobook of my new 1950 set #mystery DEATH IN THE COVE @the_cwa https://t.co/yYOLSgCFYP — P...