Tag Archives: Victorians

Diary of an Authorpreneur #1

My books are in good company on Google Play 🙂

Delighted that Cristina has agreed to translate Invasion, book two in the Ann’s War Mystery Series, into Italian. Cristina did a very professional job with Betrayal, book one in the series, and that book is now on its way to retail.

FA21C8C3-5BF3-4351-B1F5-22C46D97C989

An amazing week for Betrayal. The book reached #1 on the Amazon mystery, history and literature charts.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

More translation news. I’m delighted to announce that Minea has agreed to translate Saving Grace into Finnish. For the eighth consecutive week, Saving Grace is an Amazon Hot 💯 New Release. Meanwhile, this is Sker House, the Grange in Saving Grace, photographed this week.

2A406988-8E0C-4900-B203-85A458E61D12

My latest mini mystery for the Seaside News

E1CDE1FC-68A9-4D23-A466-4B711F7BE6EE

 

Saving Grace – The Prime Suspects

Victorian Charles 25

Easter 1876. Who poisoned wealthy banker, Charles Petrie?

Victorian Gully Spy

Prime Suspect #1, Dr James Collymore, a man familiar with poisons, a man harbouring a dark secret that, if exposed, would ruin his career. Did Dr Collymore poison Charles Petrie?

Victorian Mary Ann Keeber

Prime Suspect #2, Florrie Williams, an innocent-looking maid. However, Florrie supplied Charles with his final bedtime drink. Did Florrie Williams, pictured at the inquest, poison Charles Petrie?

D3A063A0-45A9-49CA-8398-B6935C1A816F

Prime Suspect #3, Bert Kemp, a disgruntled groom, a man sacked by Charles and thrown out of his home, a man who used poisons in his work, a man who four months previously had predicted Charles’ dying day. Did Bert Kemp, pictured at the inquest, poison Charles Petrie?

Victorian Cox Inquest

Prime Suspect #4, Mrs Jennet Quinn, a lady’s companion with a deep knowledge of poisons and a deep fear of dismissal. Did Mrs Quinn, pictured at the inquest, poison Charles Petrie?

Victorian Florence 25

Prime Suspect #5, Grace Petrie, Charles’ wife of four months, a woman with a scandalous past, a woman suspected of poisoning her first husband, Captain Gustav Trelawney, a woman shunned by polite society. Did Grace poison Charles Petrie?

IMG_20180211_180907_121

Based on a true story, Saving Grace, “the courtroom drama of the year.”

Saving Grace will be published as an eBook, paperback and audio book in English, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese with more languages to follow. The book will be backed by a major promotional campaign in America, Australia, Britain, Canada and Europe. Reserve your copy now for the special pre-order price of $0.99/£0.99/€0.99

Amazon Link

 

Saving Grace Pre-Order

Based on a true story and available from today, Saving Grace, “the courtroom drama of the year.”

Saving Grace will be published as an eBook, paperback and audio book in English, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese with more languages to follow. The book will be backed by a major promotional campaign in America, Australia, Britain, Canada and Europe. Reserve your copy now for the special pre-order price of $0.99/£0.99/€0.99

 Amazon Link

The Western Mail

2 August 1876

Sensation in the Charles Petrie Case!

Readers may recall that a young banker, by name Mr Charles Petrie, with every opportunity of succeeding in his profession, and commanding a not illiberal income, returned home after riding his horse to dine with his wife, Grace, and her companion Mrs Quinn. During and after dinner he had nothing to excite him save the receipt of a letter which somewhat annoyed him, and that his wife consumed rather more wine than he considered to be good for her health. Immediately after retiring to his room he was seized with symptoms of irritant poisoning, and despite every effort made on his behalf, he succumbed to its effects. An inquest was held, which vexed the minds of the Coroner’s jury to a degree without precedent in Coroners’ Inquest Law, and an open verdict was returned. However, the matter will not rest there, for after questions in Parliament, a second inquest has been called under suspicion that Mr Charles Petrie was murdered.

IMG_20180211_180907_121

Who poisoned Charles Petrie? Dr James Collymore, a man familiar with poisons, a man harbouring a dark secret that, if exposed, would ruin his career; Florrie, the maid who supplied Charles with his bedtime drink; Bert Kemp, a disgruntled groom, who used poisons in his work, who four months previously had predicted Charles’ dying day; Mrs Jennet Quinn, a lady’s companion with a deep knowledge of poisons, and a deep fear of dismissal; or Grace Petrie, Charles’ wife of four months, a woman with a scandalous past, a woman shunned by polite society.

With crowds flocking to the courtroom and the shadow of suspicion falling upon Grace in the shape of the hangman’s noose, could dashing young advocate, Daniel Morgan, save her?

 

 

Snow and Sales

This week saw a record-breaking mid-week sales day for my books. The Big Chill topped my personal chart, maybe because of the snow that fell recently.  Incidently, in this picture the book under The Big Chill was written by Howard Marks who hails from the village next door to me. I’m also pleased to report that Mariel is making good progress with the translation of Sam’s Song into Spanish. More news of that in future posts.

2DD9790B-C648-4AE6-BF8C-EB0CA0F85A1B

Invasion, Ann’s War Mystery Series book two, is now available as an audio book from iBooks, Audible and Amazon. In partnership with my narrator, Suzan Lynn Lorraine, this is my tenth audio book. More will follow, including Smoke and Mirrors, Sam Smith Mystery Series book nine; Blackmail, Ann’s War book three; and Saving Grace. The paperback copies of Invasion arrived from the printer this week and are now available from my Store.

09CD9272-3460-40EF-83D3-97CB773F8EC8

Pictured, Helena Normanton. In the 1920s, Helena Normanton was one of the first women to practice law as a barrister in Britain. I’m working on an idea to create a mini-series about a female barrister set in the 1920s. I had in mind two support characters and while writing this a third character, her brother, has suggested himself.

CEE1BD92-5E71-43F8-B46E-FF2F6A351104

The editing of Saving Grace is going well. For me, the editing process is about polishing the words. I storyboard everything before I write the story, therefore when I edit I never alter the plotline.

mockup-16-80750231518612489-large

In the coming months I will be publishing an eMagazine, called Mystery. If you would like to follow progress and receive a free copy of the magazine please like my Facebook Page

2C6CD888-01B7-4210-A0DF-B6875D8DF55E

In case you missed it, here is my second mini mystery for the Seaside News.

75CD04B3-915A-443A-81DC-D1F391DC7E04

 More news next time. As ever, thanks for your interest and support.

Books and Background #5

FACEBOOK HEADER SAM AND ANN

This month, Sam’s Song reached number one on the Amazon.com private investigators chart for the sixth time and number one in Australia 😃

I’m delighted to say that Suzan Lynn Lorraine, an actress, radio performer and theatre producer, has agreed to narrate my audio books throughout 2018. Suzan has narrated eight of my audio books to date and we start our ambitious 2018 programme with Smoke and Mirrors, Sam Smith Mystery Series book nine, Ann’s War Betrayal, Ann’s War Invasion and Saving Grace. Saving Grace will be published, simultaneously, in three formats – paperback, eBook and audio book. Watch this space 😃

FAMILY HONOUR AUDIO BOOK

And many thanks to Mat Hardwicke, editor of the Seaside News. Mat has kindly agreed to feature my mini mystery series in his popular magazine. This means a 200 word mini mystery will appear in the Seaside News every month 😃

William_Garrow2

This is William Garrow, a champion of the underdog, a defender of the oppressed and one of the inspirations for Daniel Morgan, my advocate in Saving Grace. Incidentally, the eBook version of Saving Grace has now been listed on iBooks

Colossus

My Ann’s War Mystery Series is set in 1944-5. That era saw the development of the Colossus computer. Colossus was developed by British codebreakers to help cryptanalysts to crack codes and cyphers. Today, the machine is widely regarded as the world’s first programmable, digital computer.

Pictured, a Colossus Mark 2 computer being operated by Wrens Dorothy Du Boisson (left) and Elsie Booker.

20690143_720708954789963_8634199706016137024_o

Pictured, the printing presses at Imprint Digital. A Parcel of Rogues, Sam Smith Mystery Series book thirteen, is with Imprint Digital now. When printed, the paperback version of the book will join the eBook version on sale from all major outlets 😃

 

 

Mini Mystery #2

A Murderous Affair

In March 1855 well-to-do Madeleine Smith, aged 19, met a humble clerk, Pierre L’Angelier, aged 31 and, against her father’s wishes, entered into an affair. The couple exchanged a stream of passionate love letters. However, because of the gap in their social status they found it difficult to meet.

220px-MadeleineSmithProfile

In an effort to keep their affair secret, Madeleine burnt Pierre’s letters, but he kept the 198 epistles she sent to him. The letters reveal that the couple consummated their affair on 6th May 1856. Madeleine’s father, James, found out and forbade any further contact.

Madeleine asked Pierre to return her letters. Besotted with her, he insisted that the affair should continue, or he would send them to her father. Then, on 23rd March 1857, L’Angelier died of arsenic poisoning. The letters were discovered and Madeleine was arrested.

At her trial, Madeleine admitted that she bought arsenic, but insisted it was for cosmetic purposes, not for murder. The evidence placed the Scottish jury in two minds and they returned a verdict of ‘not proven’. Madeleine walked free. Later, she began a new life in America, where she died, aged 93.

Hannah Howe, author of the Sam Smith and Ann’s War Mysteries.

 

 

Books and Background #2

FACEBOOK HEADER SAM AND ANN

A Parcel of Rogues, Sam Smith Mystery Series book thirteen, was published on 1st January. You can read full details about the book here

The River Wye plays a crucial role in A Parcel of Rogues. This painting of the River Wye was created by Thomas Jones, 1742 – 1803, a highly respected Welsh landscape painter. He was the son of Thomas Jones and Hannah 😃

Landscape_with_View_on_the_River_Wye_by_Thomas_Jones

The writing of Saving Grace, my forthcoming Victorian novel, has reached the courtroom stage of the story. This is a scene from the Balham Inquest, the true story my novel is based on. As you can see, the courtroom is crowded. Indeed, interest in the case was so great that people were bribing police officers to get in.

victorian-inquest-room-cox_kindlephoto-11256017

Saving Grace and Professor Vernon Pennington gives evidence on the first day of the inquest into the poisoning of banker Charles Petrie. This is an amazing chapter to write because it contains a dramatic incident that goes beyond the realms of fiction, yet it is true. For an author, true satisfaction comes from a successful writing session 😃

Victorian Gull

This morning, while writing my 1944-5 mini-series, I had an idea to take a character forward ten years into the mid-1950s. The story would be a mystery, influenced by classics such as Tiger Bay.

Sam’s Song began the year in the top ten of the private investigator’s chart and, I’m pleased to say, the book ends the year in the top ten of that chart, with five #1 positions in between. Many thanks to everyone who made this possible.