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 Endeavour
Quill, 29 April 2019. ISBN: 978-1-911445-75-3
is 1894 and Simeon Crosby is on his way to becoming a national celebrity.
Crosby is a retired executioner who tours the country giving talks about his
career. However, the lecture tour is only the start of Crosby’s attempts to
capitalise on his former occupation, with the aid of journalist Ralph Batsford,
Crosby intends to write a book about his life as an executioner. Although
Crosby’s talk includes many grim stories about the road to the gallows and he
will tell darkly humorous stories about misadventures that embarrassed other
executioners, there is one story he will never tell. That is how, when he was
an executioner, the trapdoor failed to open, and the hysterical prisoner was
reprieved and returned to the cells. This story is made darker because the
prisoner subsequently escaped and murdered another woman.
When Crosby, accompanied by his wife
and brother, reach Wigan as the next stop on his lecture tour, the city is
divided. Many people are eager to see the famous man and hear his macabre
stories and his talk is fully booked, but opponents of capital punishment are
also present and organising a protest. For the Wigan police force, Crosby’s
visit means extra work and a drain on resources, especially as the ambitious
Chief Constable, Captain Bell, is determined to ensure that his career is not
damaged by any disorder during the retired hangman’s visit. Bell gives the task
of maintaining security to Detective Sergeant Michael Brennan, and despite
protesters, journalists and an escaped madman, Brennan believes he has
everything under control. Then, without warning, two deaths by violence occur,
and he must turn from security duty to the thing he does best, investigating
murder and establishing the link between the two victims, before any more
Hanging Murder is part of the author’s series of Lancashire Detective
Mysteries, and the city is very much a character in the story, with well-drawn
descriptions, authentic historical details and realistic dialogue, which are
all skilfully weaved into the narrative. The plot is interesting and the
characters of Brennan and his hapless constable, Freddie Jaggery, are
believable and engaging. A thoroughly enjoyable read for anybody who enjoys
historical crime fiction with a dark, realistic edge.
Reviewer: Carol Westron
A. J. Wright has been shortlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger Award
and won the Dundee International Fiction Prize for Act of Murder. Striking
Murder was longlisted for the CWA Endeavour Historical Dagger. He lives in
Croston in Lancashire.
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 the first in her Scene of Crimes novels,
was published July 2013. Carol recently gave an interview to Mystery People. To
read the interview click on the link below.