October 13, 2014


Those readers who have downloaded Betrayal, The Girl in the Woods, The Girl in the Red Dress, No Way Back and Landscape of Lies will know that the protagonist, London-based investigative journalist Alice Myers, has entered the secluded world of Derbyshire’s Peak District, an area of isolated farms, close-knit villages and festering secrets at the invitation of DCI Neil Hunter. 

After fifteen years in exile, successful businessman Nick Lawrence returns home to save a failing company in Betrayal. Despite being acquitted of the murder of his girlfriend Emily, he is confronted with all the people of a past life who can’t and won’t forgive him – including his own family – his return reopening old wounds.

A teenager vanishes in woodland in The Girl in the Woods. Her parents are torn apart by secrets, guilt and jealousy. Barbara Forster, the complex DI heading the enquiry, faces a race against time, following a treacherous path that leads all the way to a dark and explosive climax.

In The Girl in the Red Dress, the young daughter of a local doctor is killed – shoved into the icy, fast-flowing river Dane and cold-bloodedly left to die. Her parents stubbornly deny any involvement. Then, within days, a boy is also murdered in one of the Peak District’s bleakest cases ever when a blizzard traps the murder suspects in the small, isolated village of Earl Sterndale (below).

No Way Back focuses on the discovery near Chrome Hill and Parkhouse Hill (which edge the village) of the body of a young girl – who strongly resembles a child who disappeared in similar circumstances 26 years earlier – by a family man and soon the prime murder suspect. This unleashes a train of events that overwhelms him, his family and the local community alike.

When his attempts to clear his name fail, hampered by a mysterious stranger from his past, his journalist friend Alice desperately risks her life to bring the killer to justice. Revenge and unspeakable crimes converge on this sleepy Peak District village and there is... No Way Back.           
                Below you can see Chrome Hill in the foreground, Parkhouse in the 
                distance, the pair collectively forming part of the Dragon's Back. Further
                in the background lies Earl Sterndale - 5 miles south of Buxton.

Chrome Hill and Parkhouse Hill

Below: Dowel Cave


Those of you who have downloaded Landscape of Lies will know that Neil is soon investigating deaths that look increasingly like murder. All the deaths seem linked to a serial killer, now serving a life sentence. A cat-and-mouse game unfolds for both Neil and Alice. Is a copycat at large? Who will be the next victim? And … well, you really don’t want a spoiler!

But what I can reveal is the background to this novel and likewise its inspiration: the Peak District National Park – and the main locations depicted in it.

                                    So, follow Alice’s journey – as ‘seen’ through her eyes:                
                   The countryside near Neil’s cottage in Danebridge: the Dane 
             Valley with Shutlingsloe (the Cheshire Matterhorn) in the background                            

                                         The River Dane at Danebridge

                                      Locations of suspicious deaths:

        Chelmorton - one of the highest villages not only in Derbyshire but England
                            Youlgrave - mentioned in the Domesday book
                            as belonging to Henry de Ferrers and worth 16 shillings

                                Buxton together with its Spa and Crescent

                                                    Opera House

                                                Pavilion Gardens

                                             And King’s Head pub

                                                             Other places Alice will have visited:


                                                     Matlock Bath

                                        Matlock High Tor and Dale


                   Not forgetting the Peak District’s treacherous Snake Pass

                                      The Roaches and Hen Cloud

                      And the unforgettable, unforgiving Froggatt Edge ...

                                        The Head, Froggatt Edge, winter