Death in the Cove features a Scotland Yard detective, Inspector Alun Ryga who is called out to investigate coastal crimes. The sea is as my readers know my trademark or brand if you prefer. All my crime novels are set against the backdrop of the ever changing sea primarily along the south coast of England. In the first of the series Inspector Ryga meets war photographer, Eva Paisley, and they strike up a partnership that will run through the series.
Death in the Cove is set in a nation still gripped by austerity and rationing after the Second World War. As the country tries to come to terms with peace many are disillusioned and suffering the deprivations of homelessness, hardship, poverty and loss. Recently promoted to Inspector in the Criminal Investigations Department of Scotland Yard, Ryga is on his first solo investigation outside of London and he is keen to prove his worth. Years working at sea in the Merchant Navy and then four years spent as a German prisoner-of-war have made him watchful and thoughtful, and given him insights into his fellow man, along with a promise to himself to keep an open mind.
Set on the Island of Portland in Dorset, the body of an unidentified man dressed in a pin-striped suit is found in the secluded Church Ope Cove and Ryga is sent to investigate. There he meets war photographer, Eva Paisley, who reported the body. The discovery of the body is far from harrowing for her. She’s seen and photographed much worse. Her observations of the dead man, seen through the lens of her camera though are summarily dismissed by the local police. Ignoring the warnings of the local police inspector, and the Dorset Chief Constable that his trust in Eva Paisley is misjudged, Ryga quickly realises that her insights could provide the breakthrough he needs in a complex murder investigation and the answer to the haunting circumstances that have sent the man in the pin-striped suit to his death.
I thoroughly enjoyed writing this crime novel. It was fascinating to research policing and life in 1950 Britain. It was also challenging writing something where police officers can't just hop in a car and dash about and where there are no mobile phones or Internet. The world has changed so much since 1950 and my aim in writing this novel is not only provide an intriguing crime but to reflect the times, the fashions the attitudes and a much slower pace of life before Britain headed for the more racy 1960s.
Death in the Cove is to be published in paperback, as an ebook on Amazon Kindle and as an audio book in 2019.
Where to buy
From your local bookshop
Also available as an ebook and on Amazon Kindle, Kobo and for loan from UK, USA, Irish and Commonwealth libraries