Top Five Fictional Murder Weapons #writing

by S.J.I. Holliday

1. Pigs
Method: Breed some scary pigs, the big hairy boar type. Torment them and abuse them for several years. Feed them whole animals to get them prepared. Taunt them at your leisure. When they appear to be suitably feral, toss in your victim and leave the piggies to their dinner.

Cause of Death: Mauling, blood loss, shock.

Whodunnit? Popularised by Hannibal Lecter and The Mafia.

2. Superglue
Method: Gag first – a pair of socks should do it, held in place with a couple of layers of duct tape (right round the head, make sure it can’t slip off). Then the pièce de résistance – squirt the superglue up each nostril (be careful – don’t add too much or you’ll end up glued to the victim… that’s your alibi screwed right there), then pinch nose gently until the glue sets and the nostrils fuse.

Cause of Death: Suffocation.

Whodunnit? I believe both Craig Robertson and Fergus McNeill have used this method (in their books...)

3. Icicle
Method: Wearing big gloves with a good grip (maybe those silicon gauntlet oven gloves), select a very cold and spiky icicle from the roof of a ski lodge. Stab your victim through the heart or into the carotid artery, if possible. Note: can only be done in winter.

Cause of Death: Exsanguination (or they could possibly freeze to death first – either way, it’s a win)

Whodunnit? Christopher Brookmyre used this in his first novel, but he made it extra special by adding mercury to the tip of his lethal ice pole.

4. Leg of Lamb
Method: Another disappearing murder weapon… select one large leg of lamb (note: works best if frozen), take one drunk, cheating husband who is complaining about his dinner not being ready… wait until he is seated at the dining table, then bludgeon him to death with the meat. Once he’s dead, stick the lamb in the oven at 150 degrees for a few hours while you dig his grave. Don’t forget to braise. Enjoy with new potatoes and a sprinkling of fresh mint.

Cause of Death: Blunt object trauma.

Whodunnit? Roald Dahl in his Tales of the Unexpected short story, ‘Lamb to the Slaughter’. Dahl had form, too... I never trusted him after he drugged those pheasants in ‘Danny, the Champion of the World.’

5. Gold Paint
Method: Buy a large tin of gold paint. Wait until victim is asleep (possibly drug them so they don’t struggle). Undress them. Coat their entire body with the paint – don’t forget the nooks and crannies. Cross your fingers that it works, because you’ve only seen it on TV at Christmas after you’ve drunk half a bottle of sherry.

Cause of Death: Epidermal Suffocation (allegedly).

Whodunnit? Why, Auric Goldfinger, of course. The scamp.


P.S. There’s a fabulously inventive murder weapon in Mark Edwards and Louise Voss’s soon-to-be-released novel ‘The Blissfully Dead’ – but I won’t spoil it for you… If you’ve got any other inventive fictional weapons, tell us in the comments!

P.P.S. Thanks to Marnie Riches for suggesting this topic as a blog post.

Black Wood

S.J.I. (Susi) Holliday writes crime and horror. Her debut psychological thriller ‘Black Wood’ was published in March 2015.

Find out more at her website or on twitter @sjiholliday and facebook (SJI Holliday).

Live Q&A with Chris Ewan, Thurs 27 Aug, 7.30pm UK #DarkTides

Dark Tides

Please join us for a Live Q&A on Twitter with Chris Ewan to celebrate the paperback release of Dark Tides, Thursday 7.30pm UK/2.30pm EST.

One night. Six friends. One deadly dare...

Tweet your question to @ChrisEwan using #DarkTides

Top 5 Baddies Marnie Riches Loves to Hate... #goodbaddies

Marnie Riches
by Marnie Riches

1: Hannibal Lecter – was there ever a baddie so charming, intelligent or warped as The Silence of the Lambs’ Dr. Lecter? This is the magnificent epicurean, created by Thomas Harris, whose favourite dish was apparently a victim’s liver with some fava beans and a big Amarone – all served on Meissner porcelain, of course. I loved him twenty years ago and I love him now.

2: Walter White – OK, so Walter White is not the creation of a crime fiction writer, but is the star character in award-winning TV phenomenon, Breaking Bad. But like the characters in my own George McKenzie series, Walter is just an ordinary guy who gets tipped over the edge by the shit that life flings his way. A seemingly benign family man, he is violent, competitive, calculating and remorseless but his motivations are almost always noble. That’s why he’s the best cook in town!

3: Annie Wilkes – Penned by Stephen King, of course! Famous for kidnapping and hobbling an author because he was “just another lying ol’ dirty birdy”, she is the undoubted star of Misery. I have a soft spot for well-rounded, female psychopaths in literature, because we see them so infrequently. Apparently just an eccentric, small-town bookworm, Annie’s utterly terrifying, unpredictable as hell and, well, kind of cockadoodie.

4: Kevin Katchadourian – A sullen, difficult, untrustworthy teenaged son to a reluctant, beleaguered mother, who tries everything in a bid to bond with her child. Kevin, the creation of Lionel Shriver, is a chilling representation of how motherhood can go badly wrong. He’s bright, he’s manipulative, deadly and lacking any remorse whatsoever. But he’s clearly just a vulnerable boy, too. I love and loathe him in equal measure.

5: The Leopard – Jo Nesbo is very, very good at coming up with really inventive violence, none more so than that used by the Leopard. For my part, the Leopold’s Apple used by The Leopard was the macabre star of the novel. I really couldn’t think of a more revolting way of being dispatched than by having a small metal ball inserted into your mouth, which expands and plunges needles into your head and then…Well. Read it and see for yourself. As a medieval history buff, I was fascinated by this fictional torture device - more suited to being used by the Spanish Inquisition than a modern serial killer.

♠ Marnie Riches is an award-winning thriller writer. The Girl Who Broke the Rules has just been released. You can see Marnie's discussion of the baddies she loves to hate by following the #goodbaddies hashtag on Twitter.

♠ Marnie Riches books on Amazon. Follow Marnie on Twitter @Marnie_Riches

Who would make your top 5 list of baddies in fiction? Let us know in the comments.

BritCrime at the Agatha Christie Festival #QueenofCrime
Louise Voss and Helen Smith (that's me!) have been invited to appear at the Agatha Christie International Festival on Saturday 19th September.

We will be talking about our lives as successful women crime writers "Following in her Footsteps" with other members of Killer Women at 11.00 on Saturday.

Then at 4.30pm we will be talking about the BritCrime Festival.

That means we will be talking about *you* & how wonderful it was to connect with readers around the world during three glorious days in July.

If you have any thoughts/comments you'd like us to share with the audience, please let us know in the comments or on our Facebook page.

And if you will be at the festival in September, please make sure you get in touch so we can say hello. You can email us at info[at]britcrime[dot]com

NEW RELEASE: The Girl Who Broke the Rules

The pulse-pounding new thriller from Marnie Riches is out today. For anyone who loves Jo Nesbo and Stieg Larsson, The Girl Who Broke the Rules is for you!

When the mutilated bodies of two sex-workers are found in Amsterdam, Chief Inspector van den Bergen must find a brutal murderer before the red-light-district erupts into panic.

Georgina McKenzie is conducting research into pornography among the UK’s most violent sex-offenders but once van den Bergen calls on her criminology expertise, she is only too happy to come running.

The rising death toll forces George and van den Bergen to navigate the labyrinthine worlds of Soho strip-club sleaze and trans-national human trafficking. And with the case growing ever more complicated, George must walk the halls of Broadmoor psychiatric hospital, seeking advice from the brilliant serial murderer, Dr. Silas Holm…

Get The Girl Who Broke the Rules for 99p today.

BritCrime Festival in the news
by Helen Smith
There's a nice mention in The Bookseller for BritCrime.

http://britcrime.comBritCrime was set up with the intention of allowing authors to connect with readers around the world online without disrupting our writing time.

Our first festival was such a great success that we will be organising a Christmas Party in December and another festival next summer. To make sure you don't miss out, please join our newsletter.

The Bookseller is the UK's book trade magazine. You can read the article here.

For more information about BritCrime you can email Helen Smith
♠ info[@]britcrime dot com

More about the BritCrime Festival
BritCrime website
Rocking Self Publishing: Disruption and the BritCrime Festival
The Joined Up Writing Podcast: BritCrime Festival Preview

#amwriting #Screenwriting Tricks for Authors: Three-Act Structure

by Alexandra Sokoloff

Before I was a full-time crime author, I was a full-time screenwriter, and because I have both backgrounds I'm often asked to teach story structure to both filmmakers and authors. There are simple and powerfully effective storytelling tricks to be stolen - I mean borrowed - from Hollywood. I've had two workbooks out on these methods in e format for a while, but I've finally compiled all the material and expanded it into a print textbook as well.

Print book 

e book

Enter to win a copy of the book!

Here's one of the most basic lessons every writer and filmmaker should know:

What is the Three-Act Structure, anyway, and why should you care?

Pro author, aspiring author, and reader alike have probably heard at least vaguely about the Three-Act Structure. But not everyone is completely clear about what the Three-Act Structure really is - and why it's crucial for every writer to understand.

So here’s a little —very short!—practical history.

Three Act dramatic structure comes from theater, which was around WAAAAAY before novels, film, and television; the golden age of Greek theater was, oh, 500-300 B.C., and in this period was developed the dramatic structure on which plays, novels, film and television are based.

Dramatists would be the first to point out that three-act structure is really the natural structure of a story, period, and has been employed since cavemen came back from the hunt and insisted on recounting their huge life-threatening adventures out there to the cavewomen (who naturally had great adventures of their own during the day, but were wise enough to understand even back in those cave days that there are some things men just don’t need to know).

It is often said that the essence of dramatic structure is: “Get the hero up a tree. Throw rocks at him. Get him down.”

That’s three acts right there. A little simplistic for my taste, but it does give a basic rhythm: Introduce a main character and a problem, intensify the problem, then solve it.

Another bare-bones structure summation that you hear a lot is: someone wants something very badly and is having trouble getting it (but eventually does.) Again, three parts: a heroine with a desire, opposition to the desire, and eventual triumph (or failure).

Well, that basic three-part rhythm of storytelling was set into a standard form by the ancient Greeks and is still largely the same today, not just in plays, but in all dramatic media.

Now, wait a minute, you may be saying. Shakespeare’s plays have FIVE acts.

Well, yes. But if you look at Elizabethan plays, their Acts I and II constitute what we’ve been talking about as Act 1, their Acts III and IV comprise our Act II, and Act 5 is Act 3 (shorter than the others, remember?).

Plays were THE form of storytelling for thousands of years, because most of the populace of any country couldn’t read, and there was no television yet. So, until the invention of the Gutenberg press (1436, and yes, there was moveable type in China century in 1041, but it didn’t have the world impact that the Gutenberg press did), which made the printed word available cheaply, plays were THE entertainment (music and sports are different media). The novel wasn’t even invented until – well, that’s up for debate, but anywhere from 1007 to 1740: you decide:

Candidates for the world's first novel in English
The Tale of Genji

So because they were the reigning form of dramatic entertainment for thousands of years, plays have had an indelible influence on ALL of the dramatic media. And what’s important to understand about the structure of plays is that they’re based on how long human beings can reasonably sit in one place without getting bored, restless, hungry, thirsty, and just numb in the posterior - and walking out on the show.


Same with movies. Admit it – anything over two hours and you’re going to start looking at your watch.

So plays built in the concept of intermissions, so that people could have breaks and go out and – uh - refresh themselves, and sponsors could hawk their wares and make money off the show. Commercials have history, too.

But the trick about intermissions is that once people are out in the lobby drinking and flirting and smoking and doing what they do on a Saturday night, their natural tendency is to want to keep drinking and flirting and all those things that drinking and flirting hopefully lead to.

So it was absolutely crucial for the playwright to end each act, before the intermission, with something so great that the audience would come right back into the theater when the lobby lights blink, and not just go carousing into the night.

And that’s how the cliffhanger was born. The “curtain scene”, or just “curtain”, had to be so explosive – such a startling revelation or reversal, such a dramatic shift in the power dynamics of the characters, that the audience would want to come back in to the theater after intermission to find out what happens.

And that curtain scene is alive and well today as ACT CLIMAXES. In movies it’s not quite so evident because the film doesn’t actually stop for a break at the act climax, but that rhythm is definitely there. In network television, you do actually have a curtain and an intermission, called a “commercial”, and woe betide you if you want to work for television and don’t understand the concept of a cliffhanger before the act break, or “act out”. (I am not a TV writer, and this is not a TV writing article, and I’m being horribly simplistic, but the actual timing of these breaks varies according to where the commercials are set, and internet delivery of shows is going to change that drastically. For further information, is a great resource for aspiring TV writers.)

Now, when you’re reading a book, you can take your intermission any time, and you do. But as an author, you still have to lure your reader back to your book. My point here is – why not understand the concept of the curtain and possibly use the tricks that have kept audiences coming back into the theater, and back from commercial breaks, for thousands of years?

So I implore you – see a good play once in a while. No one does cliffhangers and reversals and revelations better than the great playwrights. Shakespeare, obviously, but any good playwright understands how to do this. For example, I find Lillian Hellman’s curtains just breathtaking – the whole power dynamics of a ruthless family can turn on a dime, and you can’t wait to get back into the theater to find out WHAT HAPPENS NEXT.

And that – is what we’re after, right?

Once you've got the hang of act climaxes, you can move on to a much better-kept secret of film-writing: the eight-SEQUENCE structure. But that - is another post!

Question for the day – can you give me examples of great curtains or cliffhangers – theatrical, filmic, or novelistic?

    -  Alex

You can sign up for my mailing list to get free breakdowns of The Silence of the Lambs, The Wizard of OzChinatown, and other classic movies as I analyze them for my students and blog readers.

What readers are saying about #BritCrime's new releases

Love reading mysteries and thrillers? See what BritCrime readers are saying about today's new releases. Dunne: A Killing Moon

DI Brook is confronted with kidnap, torture and murder in this intricately plotted crime thriller.

"A Killing Moon is another brilliantly tense thriller from Derby's very own crime writer Steven Dunne...  A Killing Moon isn't a simple 'guess the murderer' style crime novel. It's one of those books in which things start out quietly, and seemingly simply, but soon escalate... The plot twists in satisfyingly complex ways - and, even though the reader, seeing more than one side to the story, is often a couple of steps ahead of the police enquiry, it isn't possible to foresee how things will end."  
Mary, Our Book Reviews Online

See the rest of Mary's review at Our Book Reviews Online.
See A Killing Moon at Amazon
Colette McBeth: The Life I Left Behind

If you want the truth who are you going to turn to?

"Utterly compelling and hypnotic... There are heartbreaking truths and shocking twists as Melody gets nearer to the truth and learns the identity of her attacker and Eve's killer. The plot is outlined in glorious detail, with McBeth's considerable talent as a storyteller building the layers as there book races towards its conclusion. It's a real page-turner that I begrudgingly put down only when my eyes were stinging with tiredness."
Claire Loves to Read

See the rest of Claire's review at Claire Loves to Read.
See The Life I Left Behind at Amazon

Ava Marsh: Untouchable

A gritty commercial thriller with an addictive blend of sex and intrigue...

"I found ‘Untouchable’ completely compelling reading. At times my heart was genuinely racing as I didn’t know what the outcome would be in several of the situations. The plot is so skilfully constructed that it surprises and wriggles away from the reader just as you think you have an understanding of what exactly is happening."  
Linda's Book Bag

See the rest of Linda's review at Linda's Book Bag.
See Untouchable at Amazon

Thanks to Mary, Claire and Linda for the reviews.

Alexandra Sokoloff's Book of Shadows, 99p in the UK, Tuesday 11/8

My spooky thriller Book of Shadows is just 99p in the UK today, Tuesday 11/8  ($3.99 US and worldwide).

"A wonderfully dark thriller with amazing "Is-it-isn't-it?"suspense all the way to the end. Highly recommended." - Lee Child

Book of Shadows is about a cynical Boston cop who teams up with a mysterious Salem witch to solve what looks like a Satanic murder. 
It’s fascinating to me how when you write a book, everyone always assumes it’s about you. Few people get that sometimes, if not most times, when you write a book it’s about getting OUT of you. Just like reading is, right?

So naturally everyone who reads it assumes that I’m a witch (that’s with a "w"). Oh, the interviewers don’t come right out and say it, but you know that’s what they’re asking.

Well, I’m not. Really. Not really. No more than any woman is a witch.
But I can’t deny that writing Book of Shadows was a really excellent opportunity for me to indulge some of my witchier nature. I wanted to dive right in and explore some of those things that make some men – and a lot of women – uncomfortable with feminine power, and feminine energy, and feminine sexuality, and feminine deity.

I was working up to this book for quite a while. I’ve been around practicing witches most of my life. That’s what happens when you grow up in California, especially Berkeley. Actually the Berkeley part pretty much explains why I write supernatural to begin with, but that’s another post. Those of you who have visited Berkeley know that Telegraph Avenue, the famous drag that ends at the Berkeley campus, is a gauntlet of clothing and craft vendors, artists, and fortunetellers, forever fixed in the sixties. Well, look a little closer, and you’ll see just how many pagans, Wiccans, and witches there actually are.

I’ve walked that gauntlet thousands of times in my life. It does something to your psyche, I’m telling you.

There was also the Renaissance Pleasure Faire, where I spent many summer days in my interestingly misspent youth. Renaissance Faires are teeming with witches (check out the Fortune Tellers’ Grove next time if you don’t believe me).

So even though I don’t actually practice, not in an organized covenish kind of way, I’ve been to a ceremony or two, and you could say I’ve been researching this book for quite some time. In fact, I think I’ve known I was going to write this book ever since I first saw a "Calling of The Corners," a Craft ceremony which is one of the ritual scenes I depict in "Book of Shadows." It’s one of the most extraordinary spiritual experiences I've ever had -- such elemental, feminine power.
And in everyday life, there some things that are just useful to know about the Craft.
I’m not much one for spells, I’m more of a meditator. But when I had to kick my evil tenants out of my rental house? A cleaning service was just not enough. You better believe that the second the locksmith was done changing the locks, I was down at the witch supply store, buying black and white candles (for protection and cleansing), and sage (smudge it for purification). I opened every window and swept the whole house widdershins (to the left, to dismiss) with a new broom dipped in salt and rosemary to dispel all lingering energy. Ritual works, and it doesn’t really matter what accoutrements you use; it’s really about the intention: in this case to cleanse, heal, and start over fresh.

Another concept of the Craft that I’ve always found particularly useful is Maiden, Mother, Crone. Those are the three aspects of the Goddess, and also the three phases of the moon, corresponding colors white, red and black. They represent the three cycles of a woman’s life – youth, womanhood and age – but women also pass through all three aspects every month when they’re menstruating, and knowing that has saved my life (and the lives of many of those around me) many a time.

The time right after your period is Maiden: you have a rush of estrogen, so you’re glowing, you’ve just dropped all that water weight, you have a ton of energy, and you’re – well, up for it. And men can sense it. Best time to snag a partner, although your choices might not be exactly the best in this phase of the cycle.

The Mother (also called Queen) phase of the month is around ovulation. You’re powerful, grounded, and can get a lot done, especially creatively, because of the pregnancy connotations. It’s a sexy time in a different way than Maiden, because there’s the extra knowledge 
that yes, you really can get pregnant right now.

The Crone phase is raging PMS and the "death" that a period often feels like. Wise people know to avoid you at this time unless they really want a faceful of truth, and I try not to schedule meetings, especially with men, when I’m in this phase. Best for me to be solitary and contemplative. And contain the damage.
But the things that come out of your mouth during this phase are the deep truth, even if they’re not pleasant, and if you remember to breathe, put the knife down, and pay attention to what you’re feeling and saying, you can learn a lot about your life and what you really need to be doing. Also your dreams will tend to be the most powerful, vivid, and significant in this phase. I know mine are.

I appreciate the earth/nature centeredness of the Craft. I like to be aware of whether the moon is waxing or waning, and focus on bringing things into my life during the waxing, and letting go of things (or people!) in the waning. And I like knowing that there is extra power and magic at the Solstices and Equinoxes; that knowledge makes me stop at least four times a year to consider what I really want to manifest in my life.

(Obviously I used all of that Moon knowledge and more in the Huntress Moon series, too…)

Let’s face it: I also like the clothes. With my hair, I’ll never be able to pull off the tailored look. I love lace and fishnets and velvet and sparkles and corsets and big jewelry. I love the candles and the scents and that every day has a color (today is white, if you’re wondering).
And there is another aspect of the Craft that has been truly important to me, spiritually. It’s about balance. I have never, ever bought the idea that God is male. It runs contrary to my entire experience of reality. I love you guys, really I do, but you’re only half the equation. I can’t see how an ultimate power could be anything but BOTH male and female. So the notion of a Goddess, in all Her forms, to me, completes the equation.

And a Supreme Being who likes velvet and fishnets? Even better.

So how about you? What’s your take on witches? Are you familiar with the way witchcraft is actually practiced, or is that whole world completely mysterious to you? Or do you do the odd spell or two yourself?

-- Alexandra Sokoloff

Book of Shadows

Homicide detective Adam Garrett is already a rising star in the Boston police department when he and his cynical partner, Carl Landauer, catch a horrifying case that could make their careers: the ritualistic murder of a wealthy college girl that appears to have Satanic elements.

The partners make a quick arrest when all evidence points to another student, a troubled musician in a Goth band who was either dating or stalking the murdered girl. But Garrett's case is turned upside down when beautiful, mysterious Tanith Cabarrus, a practicing witch from nearby Salem, walks into the homicide bureau and insists that the real perpetrator is still at large. Tanith claims to have had psychic visions that the killer has ritually sacrificed other teenagers in his attempts to summon a powerful, ancient demon.

All Garrett's beliefs about the nature of reality will be tested as he is forced to team up with a woman he is fiercely attracted to but cannot trust, in a race to uncover a psychotic killer before he strikes again.


"Sokoloff successfully melds a classic murder-mystery/whodunit with supernatural occult undertones." - Library Journal

"Compelling, frightening and exceptionally well-written, Book of Shadows is destined to become another hit for acclaimed horror and suspense writer Sokoloff. The incredibly tense plot and mysterious characters will keep readers up late at night, jumping at every sound, and turning the pages until they've devoured the book." - Romantic Times Book Reviews

"Fast-paced with strong characterizations, fans will enjoy this superb thriller, as Adam and the audience wonder if The Unseen could be the killer." - Publisher's Weekly

"A wonderfully dark thriller with amazing is-it-isn't-it suspense all the way to the end. Highly recommended." - Lee Child

Kindle Deal: The Candidate

by Daniel Pembrey
Inspiration for the cover of The Candidate
Last month, at the Foreign Bodies panel of BritCrime, I discussed the importance of location in crime writing with Quentin Bates, M.J. McGrath and K.T. Medina. So many interesting points came out of this session, not least the need to be away from a place to write about it with a certain depth of field.

So it proved for me with The Candidate: A Luxembourg Thriller, which I only managed to complete after leaving the Grand Duchy. It’s an intense place – a “snow globe” as central character Nick Thorneycroft describes it in the story. Luxembourg City is a crossroads location and is visually dramatic, with something deeply mysterious and atmospheric about it.

The setting proved ideal for this Kindle Single novella, which is on sale for 99p in the UK and 99¢ in the US between August 8th and August 15th. The Candidate tells the story of a headhunter trying to recruit a candidate into his financial company’s Russian operations; the headhunter collides with the Russian security services, and thereby becomes the hunted.

♠ Daniel Pembrey pictured right with the British Ambassador for Luxembourg

♠ Luxembourg is used as a setting by another British crime author, Ruth Dugdall, in her upcoming thriller Nowhere Girl. This novel is about a child’s disappearance at the famous Schueberfouer (fair) and is out on 31st October with Legend Press.

Kindle Deal: The Miracle Inspector #thriller
Dystopian thriller THE MIRACLE INSPECTOR by Helen Smith is on offer today. If you enjoyed The Children of Men, this one should appeal to you.

The Miracle Inspector is one of the few novels that everyone should read, it's a powerful novel that's masterfully written and subtly complex. SciFi and Fantasy Books

In its feminist angle, The Miracle Inspector is reminiscent of Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. Smith has an extraordinarily rich imagination that never fails to surprise and delight. Huffpost Books

Helen Smith crafts a story like she's the British lovechild of Kurt Vonnegut and Philip K. Dick, only with a feminist slant. Journal of Always Reviews

One of the finest novels of its genre. For Books' Sake

The Miracle Inspector is a dark dystopian novel, full of twists and turns that has the reader guessing and waiting in anticipation to see what happens next. Bella Online

The Miracle Inspector is set in London in the near future. England has been partitioned, schools have been closed down, and women need permission to leave their homes.

At only twenty years old, Lucas has a very important job at the Ministry. Most of the older men have been carted off to prison, so the young men run London. While Lucas investigates reported miracles, his young wife Angela dreams of escaping to a place where schools and theatres are still open, and women are free to work outside the home.

A bundle of secret letters from a poet involved in the revolution that ruined England, a visit to a desperate woman with a disabled child, a misguided challenge to the Head of Security at the Ministry… A series of minor catastrophes of their own making mean Lucas and Angela have no choice but to try to flee the chaos of London, with disastrous results.

Warning: The Miracle Inspector will break your heart. You will catch yourself thinking about the characters long after you have finished reading the last page.

Chosen as a "best book of the year" by For Books' Sake and The Cult Den

♠ Get it for 99p in the UK | 99¢ in the US:

This link will take you to your local Kindle store.