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 Robert Hale
Ltd, 31 October 2018. ISBN: 978-0-71982803-4
Doug Mullen, an ex-soldier turned
private investigator based in Oxford, is cruising along the motorway when a
multi-vehicle collision interrupts his journey.Always quick to act in an emergency, Doug pulls a mother and daughter from
their Fiat Uno which is trapped beneath the smouldering carnage on the tarmac.His heroism is subsequently celebrated when mobile phone footage of the
incident is shown on national television.Mullen, along with the rescued Natalie and Ellie Swan, find themselves
beamed into homes around the country, but whilst the P.I. is inundated with
requests for his investigative skills, the women are less comfortable with their
unexpected media exposure.It transpires
that the pair live within walking distance of where Mullen has taken a house-sitting
job, and when Ellie’s mother suffers a stroke following the accident, he visits
them to offer moral support.
Events take an unsettling turn when Natalie
receives a surprising package. Mullen
feels obliged to turn his attention to tracing the sender, whilst still trying
to juggle new cases that have resulted from his unexpected celebrity.The detective is engaged not only to find a
young Syrian refugee who has disappeared from his Oxford home, but also to
track down the author of a threatening letter and confirm the whereabouts of a
recently released prisoner.The humdrum
routine of these enquiries plunges the P.I. into a complex web of suspense,
lies and murder when he, or rather Rex, an adorable Westie Poodle for whom he
is caring as part of his duties as house-sitter, discovers a corpse in Bagley
At this stage the Thames Valley Police
in the form of Detective Inspector Holden and Detective Constable Trent are
called in. The police officers dismiss
Doug from the crime scene but are unable to dismiss him from the case, because
by now he is inextricably involved in an investigation that leads him, and
them, across the country as he gradually pieces together a puzzle that is as
intriguing as it is lethal.
Peter Tickler writes with humour and compassion in this skillfully
crafted novel, the sixth in his series set in Oxford.The author effortlessly weaves together
apparently disparate plots as the story moves towards a startling dénouement.Doug Mullen’s self-deprecating character makes him an endearing
protagonist as he contends with the unreliable and sometimes dangerous
characters he encounters in the course of his investigations.The story is as compelling as its ending is
surprising, in a book that is both absorbing and entertaining.Highly recommended.
Reviewer: Dot Mrshall-Gent
has lived and worked in Oxford for nearly 30 years, and before that he was a
University student, reading classics at Keble College.Peter is a member of the Crime Writer's
Association and Mystery People group.
Dot Marshall-Gentworked in the
emergency services for twenty years first as a police officer, then as a
paramedic and finally as a fire control officer before graduating from King’s
College, London as a teacher of English in her mid-forties. She completed
a M.A. in Special and Inclusive Education at the Institute of Education, London
and now teaches part-time and writes mainly about educational issues. Dot
sings jazz and country music and plays guitar, banjo and piano as well as being
addicted to reading mystery and crime fiction.