Even though the build-up to this moment can be measured in years, rather than months (once you factor in all the writing, consultation, editing and so on), I still find the reality has taken me by surprise.
Here’s the wonderful cover designed by the genius that is Berni Stevens. The book’s official release date is 12th February.
And here’s the blurb:
What if you were powerless to protect the person you cared about most?
When Ruby finds her partner has done the unforgivable, she has no option but to move out of their home. With nowhere else to go, a job house-sitting in Cambridge seems like the perfect solution.
But when the owner of the property, the mysterious Damien Newbold, is found murdered, Ruby’s new job takes an unnerving turn – one she can’t resist investigating herself.
Ruby’s new boss, Nate Bastable, has his eye on her and seems determined to put a stop to her sleuthing. Is he simply worried for the welfare of a member of staff, or is there something altogether more complicated – and potentially dangerous – at play?
I’m especially excited about this release, as it also marks the launch of a new imprint for my publisher: Death by Choc Lit: gripping, edge-of-your-seat reads.
And for me it’s something of a new beginning, since the book features a fresh set of characters, and is set in my home city of Cambridge, which has fascinated me for as long as I’ve lived here. It’s a small place: a concentrated pocket of contrasts and contradictions. You get people intermingling who wouldn’t normally rub shoulders. Whilst there are college choirs singing madrigals by the river, there are also drunks dealing drugs on the commons. You get high-flying academics living on the same streets as squatters. (My particular road is a case in point…)
Cambridge’s size also means news travels fast. If you’ve got a secret, you’d better be careful who you tell… All in all, it’s a very inspiring setting for crime fiction!
The follow-up to A Stranger’s House – featuring the same characters – is already in with my publisher, as is a sequel to my first novel, You Think You Know Me, so I hope to have more London and Cambridge mysteries available in the fullness of time. (Cue the editing process again!)