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Tuesday, 31 July 2018

‘Knoxley Hall' by Eddie Heaton

Published by Matador,
28th May 2018.
ISBN: 978-1-78803375-6 (PB)

Detective Sergeant Jack Todd is called to the murder of Terry Dehavilland, a newspaper reporter who had been jailed previously for phone hacking a Government Minister's telephone and had recently been released. His boss then gives him Terry's address and instructs him to go and have a look round.

He breaks in the back door, finds a computer, and when he turns it on sees it contains Terry's journal. It has details of how he started digging the dirt on well-known people, some high up in the government. One particular article describes famous men involved in child abuse cases mainly concerning a home called Knoxley Hall.  While he is reading this, a Lucy Mainwaring, a journalist comes in, and says she has been sent to confront him with an accusation that he preys on women, which he vehemently denies. It is obvious to him that they have both been set up, but why? Lucy takes some convincing but finally comes around to his way of thinking.

Todd decides to follow up some of the leads in Terry's journal. He reads that a Lord Warrington is one of the men involved together with two bent policemen, Norcross and Barrowclough and a Bishop Frobisher another well-known figure. However, he does not realise what dangerous enemies he is making, delving into their lives, as he finds to his cost.

Then the laptop is stolen, but Lucy, now helping Todd has managed to scan the contents onto her phone. She is determined not only to expose the child abusers but also to make a big name for herself as the person who helped bring them all to book. Even when it seems her own father is involved.

However, the men in high places have other ideas and are just as determined to stop anyone exposing their identities and all activities both past and present, with dire consequences.

Quite a thought provoking subject which has many parallels to the recent scandals involving names at Westminster suspected of child abuse. In fact, in the Postscript at the back of the book, there is mention of a paedophile ring associated with Elm Guest house in the 1980's and how the scandal was hushed up and that enquiries since have really not achieved anything at all.

Recommended reading for those interested in government 'cover ups'.
Reviewer: Tricia Chappell

Eddie Heaton is a veteran journalist and publisher.

Tricia Chappell. I have a great love of books and reading, especially crime and thrillers. I play the occasional game of golf (when I am not reading). My great love is cruising especially to far flung places, when there are long days at sea for plenty more reading! I am really enjoying reviewing books and have found lots of great new authors.

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