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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Published by KDP. 19 Mar 2013. ISBN:
Elton Spears is a learning
disabled young man with a very tenuous grasp on reality and little ability to
fend for himself. It is not surprising that Elton has a long history of falling
foul of the legal system. Jim Harwood is the solicitor who has defended Elton
since his first arrest for stealing a box of giant Christmas crackers from
Woolworths. However, this time, when Jim is summoned to represent Elton, it is
very different and far more serious. Elton is accused of murdering a beautiful
young woman whose body was thrown from the cliffs at Beachy Head. As Jim, the
narrator of the story explains at the beginning of the story, he knows that
Elton is innocent because it was Jim who killed the enigmatic young woman who
had been his secret lover and then framed his vulnerable client for the crime.
just when the reader thinks they have discovered the ultimate anti-hero, Jim
employs the best barrister he can to represent Elton, in the hope that he will
story is told in alternating chapters. The present day chapters tell the story
of the lead up to the trial and the trial itself; the back story chapters
describe Jim's traumatic childhood and the strange, obsessive relationship with
the young woman whom he knows as Sarena, a relationship that spirals into fatal
is a fascinating, psychological crime novel, filled with moral ambiguity. It is
impossible to condone Jim's actions but, as the story progresses, it is easy to
understand why he has done it. Jim is the classic example of a person who has
taken one false step and then another until he finds himself unable to go back.
This empathy is strengthened by Jim's own loathing of what he has done. He
spends his time divided between the desire to tell the truth and exonerate
Elton and fear that the excellent barrister he has instructed will discover the
truth behind Sarena's death. As the case progresses, Jim's fragile mental
health crumbles under his guilt and stress.
details of English legal procedure are expertly portrayed, as are its
shortcomings. It is also a cutting indictment of the way society, the health
and social services, and the legal system mistreat those with mental health or
is a cleverly written and compelling book. I would recommend it as an exciting,
challenging read, with a unique approach and all too human characters.
Reviewer: Carol Westron
known as Tim, was formerly a legal executive and adviser to the BBC’s
Eastenders. Since then he has dovetailed his career between advertising
copywriting, freelance journalism, screenwriting and novels. Tim has
written numerous television and radio commercials for a variety of well known
companies. He has written many hours of broadcast drama, notching up writing
credits for some of UK’s most popular series, including London’s Burning, The
Bill and Bad Girls.
Carol Westronis a successful short story writer and a Creative Writing teacher.She is the moderator for the cosy/historical
crime panel, The Deadly Dames.Her crime
novels are set both in contemporary and Victorian times.The Terminal Velocity of Cats is the
first in her Scene of Crimes novels, was published July 2013. Her second book About the Children was published in May