Gang novel coming soon. Life has got crazy again…

There’s been a lull in my mailing list and website activity over the summer, owing to me being away supposedly having a break but actually getting on with a flurry of book-related tasks in between occasional hikes and lake swims. But I’m back now!

Such a lot is going on with this new book, my debut ‘proper’ crime novel, I don’t really know where to start. The cover might be as good a place as any – here it is:

Cover of SILENCED

I know, it is quite attention grabbing! Thanks to designer Jayne Mapp for the cover. Fire is one of the themes in the book, which I describe as an emotionally-charged crime thriller, part police procedural and part psychological thriller. But you will have to read it to get the full picture.

Here’s the blurb:

A teenage girl murdered on her way home from school, stabbed through the heart. Her North London community is shocked, but no-one has the courage to help the police, not even her mother.

It’s DI Callum Waverley’s first major case as senior investigating officer – can he break the code of silence that shrouds the case?

This is a world where the notorious Skull Crew rules through fear. Everyone knows you keep your mouth shut or you’ll be silenced – permanently.

This is Luke’s world. Reeling from the loss of his mother to cancer, his step-father distant at best, violent at worst, he slides into the Skull Crew’s grip.

This is Jez’s world too. Her alcoholic mother neither knows nor cares that her 16-year-old daughter is being exploited by V, all-powerful leader of the gang.

Luke and Jez form a bond. Is it friendship, love or fear that brings them together? Can Callum win their trust, or will his own demons sabotage his investigation? And can anyone stop the Skull Crew ensuring all witnesses are silenced?

Oh yes, I should mention that publication date is 7 December 2021 and you will be able to pre-order the ebook on Amazon from a few weeks before. A paperback will be on sale through Amazon plus the Hobeck Books site.

My publisher asked me to write a prequel, one of the things I was doing over the summer. Saviour, the resulting longish short story, is an introduction to the world of SILENCED, where an ultra-violent and highly exploitative gang rules the surrounding neighborhood through fear. The tagline Would you save yourself – or your family? pretty much sums up the choice that has to be made by a young gang member. Anyone who subscribes to Hobeck Books can read Saviour at no cost. (Also, I should mention here that all who subscribe before 31 October 2021 will automatically be entered into Hobeck’s competition and have a chance to win a Paperwhite Kindle loaded up with books from all of the Hobeck authors, plus some very tasty goodies.)

Saviour’s cover:

Saviour’s cover

One of the other things I did on my extended visit to France (with husband and dog to our mountain retreat from civilisation) was helping to organise auditions for the audiobook’s narrators. I don’t think I mentioned it, but there will be an audiobook!! Listening to some of the audition recordings has been such thrill, and at times has brought tears to my eyes (in a good way).

Right now I’m madly sending off advance reader copies. It’s a tense time, awaiting early readers’ verdicts on my ‘gang novel’. It took me a long time to get this one right – four rewrites at least, so there’s more at stake somehow. I’m trying not to get too stressed just yet (anyone who knows how to avoid that, please let me know 🙂 )

Soon I’ll be able to unveil the SILENCED video trailer, which is something else! Also there’s a blog tour video, can’t wait to share that too. In the meantime, here’s the blog tour poster:

SILENECD blog tour

Thanks to all the bloggers who have agreed to take part.

There’s probably something else that I need to say but can’t remember what… so for now I will shut up and let you get on with whatever you should be doing.


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