Work has started on book 5 entitled:
'Murder Me Tomorrow.'
The book should be out in Autumn/Winter this year 2020.
In the meantime, I hope to have the audiobook 'Trace and Eliminate' published on Audible and iTunes in the next couple of months.
In the next month or so I will be publishing an anthology of 12 crime short stories which is pretty much finished.
There are also a couple of surprise projects in the pipeline which should be available this year.
Lots of things are happening and I wanted those that follow my web-site to be the first to know. I hope everyone has stayed safe in Lockdown and remain so, as we come blinking out of out bunkers into the sunlight, ahead of the second wave!
I hope you enjoy the extract. Links to my books are at the foot of the page.
'Murder Me Tomorrow.'
‘Whatever you want to do, do it now.
There are only so many tomorrows.’
I do not know what second it will be, what minute it will be, what hour, or even day. But it will come. You may see it coming. You may not. Regardless, I can guarantee you; there will be a moment, a moment like no other when you will draw your last breath. Like it or lump it. And at that moment you will see your final view of the world. I do not know, however, whether your last glimpse will be the sympathetic face of a loved one or the grotesque, contorted teeth-clenched face of a crazed killer. Nor do you. That is yet to be determined. Other options are available.
Thankfully, for the late Gordon Masters, it was the former rather than the latter. In death, as in life, his family and friends huddled around him in a wall of love as they lowered his coffin into the ground. The finality of this manoeuvre always triggered an outburst of emotion. Gordon’s daughter Ella was the first to break down. Sunglasses masked the family’s grief and the tears could be confused for sweat, on this the hottest day of the Summer, so far.
Gordon chose the name of his daughter, Ella, after the soul singer, Ella Fitzgerald; she was his favourite, both of their favourites; his and Brenda’s. He and his beloved had been married for fifty-three years until she died some seven years ago. Gordon was thrilled that his daughter, too, had seemed to have chosen well, with her life partner, Paul. He was a bit of a drip, but a good man at heart. They had been together for twenty years now, so they should be fine.
There were over fifty mourners, ‘a good ….. ….., turn out, send off, last drink,’ choose your own phrase, all were said during this somewhat bleak afternoon; this being the default phrase of the awkward bereaved at a funeral.
1987 had been a good year for Paul and Ella Masters, it started well, with Paul’s promotion, and a growing light at the end of a shortening financial tunnel. Then there was the mild Spring leading into a scorching Summer, and then, suddenly, out of the blue, Ella’s dad decided to depart. In truth, he had wanted to go a few years earlier, but it’s not easy to die by merely wishing it. Not that he wasn’t comfortable living at his daughter’s house, they were very kind and considerate. He'd just had enough. He found it harder to make conversation as he got older, they spoke so quickly, he didn’t have time to formulate the words to join in, before they’d moved on to something else. So, he became the ornament in the corner. ‘Are you alright, Dad?’ was the habitual chant. Often, she didn’t wait for an answer. He became more and more invisible in between bouts of kind concerted efforts, when it occasionally occurred to the rest of them, that he was still around. Once they even locked up and turned the lights off, and he was still sitting in the bloody chair. No. It was time to go. He’d had a good life, marred only by the bits of tragedy all must endure, but, on balance, it was time to get his hat. It was time to rock n roll again with Brenda.
Ella was clinging onto Paul for dear life, she could smell the soil and clay coming from the grave, and some loose mud was sticky to the souls of her shoes. Naturally, she was terribly upset, which in turn made Paul emotional, and then her daughter, Jemma, had to get the hanky out. It was a Mexican wave of grief without the thrill.
After the ceremony had finished, Ella declined to throw soil on top of the coffin. She closed her eyes and grimaced as she heard the scratchy soil and pebbles hit the wood, thrown by others. Paul lead her away, and the mourners began to meander back towards the cars. The Braithwaites first, then the Smiths, followed by Ken and Audrey from number 78. Paul was glad to be moving again, as he had felt a bit giddy in the blazing sun, and sweat was trickling down his back.
Young Jemma had hung back a bit. She was intrigued by the man with a spade waiting to fill the hole in. The heat was distorting the ether, and he seemed fluid in the haze. At 17, Jemma was feeling her feet and becoming more curious about the adult world. The dawning realisation that she would one day have to make her own way in life fuelled the interest. Just behind the gravedigger was another man. A guy in a hoody, on a bike. He seemed a little out of place: a curious bystander, no doubt. Jemma glanced back at the hole, sighed, and shook her head. ‘Bye, Grandad. Give Mamma a hug for me.’
Jemma took a slow walk back towards her parents, not relishing the impending interaction with semi-strangers, each slow step allowing others to peel away before she got there. She then felt something touch her feet. It was a tennis ball. The man in the hoody had his hand up and seemed to be beckoning her to return it. She could see Mum and Dad still saying their goodbyes, so Jemma picked the ball up, and after ignoring her initial instinct to try and throw it back, she awkwardly traipsed across the uneven grass towards the hooded man. He was smiling.
LINKS TO BUY - available to buy on Amazon Paperback, Kindle, and FREE if you subscribe to Kindle Unlimited:
ONE OBLIQUE ONE
ONE OBLIQUE ONE AUDIOBOOK
TRACE AND ELIMINATE
ADDRESSED TO KILL
FAIR MEANS OR FOUL