As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
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by Headline July 1996. ISBN: 978-0747216278
This year I gave up the day job to write full time. It's a
leap into the dark, giving up the security of a regular salary, hoping that my
success as an author will continue. Along with my newfound free time, came the
inevitable decision to read more. I'm not only interested in the new books
everyone is talking about, I want to discover all sorts of books, including
some that may have been around for a while. The book I have just finished
reading is one such. I've been aware of Alison Joseph's sleuthing nun, Sister
Agnes, for several years. The series has been on my 'To Read List' for ages. So
long, in fact, that I was afraid The
Quick and the Dead might have dated. My concerns were groundless; books
that explore human nature are timeless.
the opening pages I was involved in the troubles facing Joseph's disadvantaged
characters. Choosing a nun as her investigator was a brilliant idea. I wish I'd
thought of it! Sister Agnes is a complex woman, with an engaging curiosity
about the people she meets. And of course, like Father Brown and Cadfael before
her, and Sidney Chambers who has recently appeared, she is able to move freely
among different echelons of society, and people confide in her. Sister Agnes
mixes with the homeless and disenfranchised members of society who mistrust the
police, and are unlikely to talk to them. It's a clever set up for a detective
working outside the strictures of the police procedural.
further interest in this narrative is the character of Sister Agnes herself,
and the deep questions raised by her narrative. Confounding stereotypes, Sister
Agnes is a complex and feisty woman, with an admirable inner strength.
Throughout the twists and turns of the investigation she never really loses her
own way. In The Quick and the Dead
Joseph explores the question: 'How do we continue to believe in good when
confronted with evil?' We may not share Sister Agnes' religious faith, but she
is a credible character who leads us on an enjoyable journey through her world
of murder and mystery.
would recommend this book, and am looking forward to reading my way through the
series. It may not be the latest book out there, but it's a real find!
Joseph is a London-based crime writer and radio
dramatist. She started her career in local radio, and then in television as a
documentary director. She is the author of the series of novels featuring
SISTER AGNES, a contemporary detective nun based in South
London. Alison has written about twenty works for radio, including
THE TRUE STORY and also dramatisations of Georges Simenon's Maigret novels. Her
new novel is 'Dying to Know', a crime novel about faith, evidence and particle
physics. Alison is currently Chair of the Crime Writers' Association.
Leigh Russell studied at the University of Kent
gaining a Masters degree in English and American literature. A secondary school
teacher, specialising in supporting pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties
as well as teaching English, Her first novel, Cut Short, was published in 2009, followed by Road Closedin 2010, Dead End in 2011, Death Bedin 2012 and Stop Dead in 2013, all featuring
Detective Geraldine Steel. Cold Sacrifice the first in a new
series featuring Ian was published in 2013. Leigh Russell is married with two
daughters and lives in Middlesex.