I did not have to think very long about where I wanted to place my detective Sidney Grice. Like most authors I needed to feel confident about the location and Gower Street was one area I knew very well. I had lived in what was then the Medical School Hostel at No 125 for the best part of 5 years.
After The Storm is about a holiday in Central America that goes wrong. The locations are Belize City and the island of Roatan off Honduras in the Caribbean Sea. I have done the 140 mile sail from Belize to Roatan and always felt it would make a great setting for a novel. I kept a journal and took photos and these helped me create the atmosphere of the island. The Roatan in my novel is sun-soaked and stunning on the surface but with something dark underneath
After reading my book about Jewish refugee children sent from Germany on the Kindertransport trains, a friend suggested that I might consider the plight of child migrants sent, alone, to Australia. Interested, I began researching the subject. The first book I read was ‘Empty Cradles’ by Margaret Humphreys and from then on I was hooked. Margaret Humphreys, a Nottingham a social worker, set about tracing the families of unaccompanied child migrants, and her book is a fascinating account of her work.
1975 is now a long time ago, some 40 years before millions of us teared up at the sight of an old man in the Millennium Falcon, before anyone had heard of a holiday called “May the Fourth be with you.” But that’s the year when a young director named George Lucas and his producer, Gary Kurtz, were trying to convince their sceptical studio, 20th Century Fox, to approve a modest budget for their next movie, then called “The Star Wars.”
We were thrilled to be named Digital Business of the Year at The Bookseller Industry Awards last night.
Praised for our sales growth, impressive profitability, as well as digitally savvy marketing and balancing of digital and print, the judges said: “Head of Zeus has a simple but brilliant plan that it executes consistently well.”
Today, we launched MysteriousPress in paperback editions on Amazon in addition to the current eBook editions.
MysteriousPress.com is the world’s foremost specialist crime list. Founded by Otto Penzler in 1975, it represents the best from a century of mystery writing with authors such as Ellery Queen, Mary Roberts Rinehart, Donald Westlake, Joseph Wambaugh, Charlotte MacLeod and Rex Stout on the list.
I have been working with my new editor for three months now, rewriting and editing my new book, The Dress. I’ve never been through such a forensic, painstaking and, at times, painful process but it has been worth it. I moved publishing houses to work with Head of Zeus' brilliant, insightful and talented editor who, among others, has worked with Maeve Binchy and the recently deceased Colleen McCollough. Even though it has been an adjustment getting into the swing of new ways of working, I feel privileged to have been given this opportunity.