Manton Rempville Murders – 1

This is my second homage to the detective story. I’ve always loved mystery stories by Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and Dorothy L Sayers. I watched many DVDs of detective series from the UK and this was the spark to start the creative process. I have tried to add some humour into the book. The Manton Rempville Murders is the second in the Inspector Knowles Mysteries and reacquaints the reader with Knowles and his Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes, who were first introduced in The Goat Parva Murders.

==========        

Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes surveyed the remains of Manton Rempville monastery with a certain amount of incredulity. He’d heard that 100,000 pounds had been spent on preserving the ruins and he couldn’t understand why anyone would do such a thing. Ruins were ruins for a reason and that reason was because the natural order of things, in Barnes’s mind at least, was gradual decay – preservation was only delaying the inevitable, like applying skin cream to wrinkles or a new coat of paint to a rusting car. The ruins were open to anyone and there was no entry charge, so they were never going to get their money back.

            Barnes stiffened slightly as he saw DI Colin Knowles’s Land Rover chug into the car park and lurch to a halt too close to Barnes’s Morgan sports car for his comfort. He glanced down at the body and thought that Knowles would find this crime scene very interesting indeed. Knowles was on a new diet and his latest culinary delight was vegetable kebabs cooked on his nearly new barbecue. Even in the depths of winter.

            Barnes walked across the uneven grass as a low, cold wind whipped across the historical site. He hadn’t seen much of Knowles in the past month as they’d both been away on holiday at separate times.

            “Good morning, sir, how are you today?”

            “Fair to middling, Barnesy old son, the diet’s working well, nearly ten pounds lost.”

            “How’s the gym going?”

            “Gradually doing more on the treadmill, lifting a few weights, and getting some stretching done on those large blue balls they have. That’s not easy – those balls are bouncy as hell – I almost fell off the first few times I tried to lie on the thing. Anyway, not only can I see my toes now, but I can almost touch them too.”

            “That’s good to hear, sir. The trick to keeping the weight off is by committing to a lifestyle change rather thinking you’re on a diet.”

============

Bio: I am a writer. I love writing mysteries and thrillers, especially on topics close to my heart. A list of my books, both about travel and other subjects, can be found here.

 

Manton Rempville Murders – 2

This is my second homage to the detective story. I’ve always loved mystery stories by Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and Dorothy L Sayers. I watched many DVDs of detective series from the UK and this was the spark to start the creative process. I have tried to add some humour into the book. The Manton Rempville Murders is the second in the Inspector Knowles Mysteries and reacquaints the reader with Knowles and his Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes, who were first introduced in The Goat Parva Murders.

==========        

  “According to his credit cards, his name is Edward Pritchard; we are just running some computer checks to find out where he lives. It’s how he’s been killed that you will find interesting, sir.”

           With his hands in his trench coat pockets, Knowles stood on the wall and looked down at the body lying on what would have been the refectory floor. Edward Pritchard had been run through with a sword and the handle was sticking out of his back on the left-hand side. Knowles smiled at Dr. Crabtree, the forensic doctor, who was examining the body.

           “Dr. Crabtree, we have a real sword being used as a murder weapon?” Knowles would have rubbed his hands with glee if they hadn’t been warming up in his pockets.

           “We do indeed, Colin, a very real sword. This is a heavy cavalry sword with a straight blade with one cutting edge whereas the other side has been thickened for greater strength. The blade is around three feet in length. It directly penetrated his heart and he would have died instantly.”

           “Any prints on the handle?” Knowles looked hopeful when he said this.

           “We’ll check back at the lab, Colin, can we move him now?”

           “Yes, that will be all I think. We’ll be back at the station in an hour or so; could you have something by then in terms of fingerprints, time of death, and any ideas on a profile of who could have done it?”

           “We’ll try, Colin – no promises, but we’ll try.”

           “I presume the person who murdered Edward wasn’t aware of the type of sword they were using,” said Barnes, “because that’s a sword for slashing people with, not for running them through.”

           “So, you would have expected a murderer who knew what he was using to have hit Edward here in the neck with the sharp side,” replied Knowles.

           “Yes, sir, that’s correct.”

           “So we’re looking for an ignorant murderer then? We show the suspects the sword and ask them how they would kill someone using the sword and those who opt for the neck slash are innocent?”

           “They might be bluffing, sir, so we shouldn’t just use that as a method of elimination from our enquiries,” said Barnes, playing along with Knowles’ quite acerbic sense of humour.

           “OK, we’ll just confine ourselves to telling the murderer, when we catch him, that he/she murdered Edward here in the wrong way. So where could the sword have come from? It’s not the sort of weapon you can easily conceal.”

           “The nearest house is Manton Rempville Hall – you can see it just poking through the trees over there. That might be the best place to start.”

           “Agreed – they probably maintain an assortment of weapons to keep the staff subdued and repel invasions by the local peasants in times of crisis. We should go there after visiting our oldest friend in Goat Parva, Mrs. Adelaide Hills, and her bundle of fun, Bingo.”

           “It’s just like old times, sir.”

           “Indeed it is, Barnesy. I just hope that this is the only body Bingo finds in this murder investigation.”

============

Bio: I am a writer. I love writing mysteries and thrillers, especially on topics close to my heart. A list of my books, both about travel and other subjects, can be found here.

 

Sports the Olympics Forgot

Sports YOU should know more about.

This book describes 40 fictional sports including:

  • The Dracula Race in Romania. Here contestants have to run around Sighisoara before cycling to Bran Castle and cook kebabs on the way.
  • Mongol Vegetable Chopping from Russia. Participants have to chop vegetables whilst riding along on horseback.
  • Curling Pool from the USA. Here the players have to score points, by trying to ricochet their curling stones into depressions in the ice.

All the stories are individual and distinct and can be read independently if necessary; a book for the busy individual who perhaps has five minutes to spare to understand the complexities of Bull Pulling or Unicycle Volleyball.

The book is on NetGalley, so you can download it and enjoy reading it for free, though I would appreciate it if you could leave an honest evaluation of the book on NetGalley.

Manton Rempville Murders – 1

This is my second homage to the detective story. I’ve always loved mystery stories by Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and Dorothy L Sayers. I watched many DVDs of detective series from the UK and this was the spark to start the creative process. I have tried to add some humour into the book. The Manton Rempville Murders is the second in the Inspector Knowles Mysteries and reacquaints the reader with Knowles and his Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes, who were first introduced in The Goat Parva Murders.

==========        

Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes surveyed the remains of Manton Rempville monastery with a certain amount of incredulity. He’d heard that 100,000 pounds had been spent on preserving the ruins and he couldn’t understand why anyone would do such a thing. Ruins were ruins for a reason and that reason was because the natural order of things, in Barnes’s mind at least, was gradual decay – preservation was only delaying the inevitable, like applying skin cream to wrinkles or a new coat of paint to a rusting car. The ruins were open to anyone and there was no entry charge, so they were never going to get their money back.

            Barnes stiffened slightly as he saw DI Colin Knowles’s Land Rover chug into the car park and lurch to a halt too close to Barnes’s Morgan sports car for his comfort. He glanced down at the body and thought that Knowles would find this crime scene very interesting indeed. Knowles was on a new diet and his latest culinary delight was vegetable kebabs cooked on his nearly new barbecue. Even in the depths of winter.

            Barnes walked across the uneven grass as a low, cold wind whipped across the historical site. He hadn’t seen much of Knowles in the past month as they’d both been away on holiday at separate times.

            “Good morning, sir, how are you today?”

            “Fair to middling, Barnesy old son, the diet’s working well, nearly ten pounds lost.”

            “How’s the gym going?”

            “Gradually doing more on the treadmill, lifting a few weights, and getting some stretching done on those large blue balls they have. That’s not easy – those balls are bouncy as hell – I almost fell off the first few times I tried to lie on the thing. Anyway, not only can I see my toes now, but I can almost touch them too.”

            “That’s good to hear, sir. The trick to keeping the weight off is by committing to a lifestyle change rather thinking you’re on a diet.”

============

Bio: I am a writer. I love writing mysteries and thrillers, especially on topics close to my heart. A list of my books, both about travel and other subjects, can be found here.

 

Manton Rempville Murders – 2

This is my second homage to the detective story. I’ve always loved mystery stories by Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and Dorothy L Sayers. I watched many DVDs of detective series from the UK and this was the spark to start the creative process. I have tried to add some humour into the book. The Manton Rempville Murders is the second in the Inspector Knowles Mysteries and reacquaints the reader with Knowles and his Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes, who were first introduced in The Goat Parva Murders.

==========        

  “According to his credit cards, his name is Edward Pritchard; we are just running some computer checks to find out where he lives. It’s how he’s been killed that you will find interesting, sir.”

           With his hands in his trench coat pockets, Knowles stood on the wall and looked down at the body lying on what would have been the refectory floor. Edward Pritchard had been run through with a sword and the handle was sticking out of his back on the left-hand side. Knowles smiled at Dr. Crabtree, the forensic doctor, who was examining the body.

           “Dr. Crabtree, we have a real sword being used as a murder weapon?” Knowles would have rubbed his hands with glee if they hadn’t been warming up in his pockets.

           “We do indeed, Colin, a very real sword. This is a heavy cavalry sword with a straight blade with one cutting edge whereas the other side has been thickened for greater strength. The blade is around three feet in length. It directly penetrated his heart and he would have died instantly.”

           “Any prints on the handle?” Knowles looked hopeful when he said this.

           “We’ll check back at the lab, Colin, can we move him now?”

           “Yes, that will be all I think. We’ll be back at the station in an hour or so; could you have something by then in terms of fingerprints, time of death, and any ideas on a profile of who could have done it?”

           “We’ll try, Colin – no promises, but we’ll try.”

           “I presume the person who murdered Edward wasn’t aware of the type of sword they were using,” said Barnes, “because that’s a sword for slashing people with, not for running them through.”

           “So, you would have expected a murderer who knew what he was using to have hit Edward here in the neck with the sharp side,” replied Knowles.

           “Yes, sir, that’s correct.”

           “So we’re looking for an ignorant murderer then? We show the suspects the sword and ask them how they would kill someone using the sword and those who opt for the neck slash are innocent?”

           “They might be bluffing, sir, so we shouldn’t just use that as a method of elimination from our enquiries,” said Barnes, playing along with Knowles’ quite acerbic sense of humour.

           “OK, we’ll just confine ourselves to telling the murderer, when we catch him, that he/she murdered Edward here in the wrong way. So where could the sword have come from? It’s not the sort of weapon you can easily conceal.”

           “The nearest house is Manton Rempville Hall – you can see it just poking through the trees over there. That might be the best place to start.”

           “Agreed – they probably maintain an assortment of weapons to keep the staff subdued and repel invasions by the local peasants in times of crisis. We should go there after visiting our oldest friend in Goat Parva, Mrs. Adelaide Hills, and her bundle of fun, Bingo.”

           “It’s just like old times, sir.”

           “Indeed it is, Barnesy. I just hope that this is the only body Bingo finds in this murder investigation.”

============

Bio: I am a writer. I love writing mysteries and thrillers, especially on topics close to my heart. A list of my books, both about travel and other subjects, can be found here.

 

Sports the Olympics Forgot

Sports YOU should know more about.

This book describes 40 fictional sports including:

  • The Dracula Race in Romania. Here contestants have to run around Sighisoara before cycling to Bran Castle and cook kebabs on the way.
  • Mongol Vegetable Chopping from Russia. Participants have to chop vegetables whilst riding along on horseback.
  • Curling Pool from the USA. Here the players have to score points, by trying to ricochet their curling stones into depressions in the ice.

All the stories are individual and distinct and can be read independently if necessary; a book for the busy individual who perhaps has five minutes to spare to understand the complexities of Bull Pulling or Unicycle Volleyball.

The book is on NetGalley, so you can download it and enjoy reading it for free, though I would appreciate it if you could leave an honest evaluation of the book on NetGalley.

Sports

Sports YOU should know more about.

This book describes 40 fictional sports including:

  • The Dracula Race in Romania. Here contestants have to run around Sighisoara before cycling to Bran Castle and cook kebabs on the way.
  • Mongol Vegetable Chopping from Russia. Participants have to chop vegetables whilst riding along on horseback.
  • Curling Pool from the USA. Here the players have to score points, by trying to ricochet their curling stones into depressions in the ice.

All the stories are individual and distinct and can be read independently if necessary; a book for the busy individual who perhaps has five minutes to spare to understand the complexities of Bull Pulling or Unicycle Volleyball.

The book is on NetGalley, so you can download it and enjoy reading it for free, though I would appreciate it if you could leave an honest evaluation of the book on NetGalley.

Manton Rempville Murders – 1

This is my second homage to the detective story. I’ve always loved mystery stories by Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and Dorothy L Sayers. I watched many DVDs of detective series from the UK and this was the spark to start the creative process. I have tried to add some humour into the book. The Manton Rempville Murders is the second in the Inspector Knowles Mysteries and reacquaints the reader with Knowles and his Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes, who were first introduced in The Goat Parva Murders.

==========        

Detective Sergeant Rod Barnes surveyed the remains of Manton Rempville monastery with a certain amount of incredulity. He’d heard that 100,000 pounds had been spent on preserving the ruins and he couldn’t understand why anyone would do such a thing. Ruins were ruins for a reason and that reason was because the natural order of things, in Barnes’s mind at least, was gradual decay – preservation was only delaying the inevitable, like applying skin cream to wrinkles or a new coat of paint to a rusting car. The ruins were open to anyone and there was no entry charge, so they were never going to get their money back.

            Barnes stiffened slightly as he saw DI Colin Knowles’s Land Rover chug into the car park and lurch to a halt too close to Barnes’s Morgan sports car for his comfort. He glanced down at the body and thought that Knowles would find this crime scene very interesting indeed. Knowles was on a new diet and his latest culinary delight was vegetable kebabs cooked on his nearly new barbecue. Even in the depths of winter.

            Barnes walked across the uneven grass as a low, cold wind whipped across the historical site. He hadn’t seen much of Knowles in the past month as they’d both been away on holiday at separate times.

            “Good morning, sir, how are you today?”

            “Fair to middling, Barnesy old son, the diet’s working well, nearly ten pounds lost.”

            “How’s the gym going?”

            “Gradually doing more on the treadmill, lifting a few weights, and getting some stretching done on those large blue balls they have. That’s not easy – those balls are bouncy as hell – I almost fell off the first few times I tried to lie on the thing. Anyway, not only can I see my toes now, but I can almost touch them too.”

            “That’s good to hear, sir. The trick to keeping the weight off is by committing to a lifestyle change rather thinking you’re on a diet.”

============

Bio: I am a writer. I love writing mysteries and thrillers, especially on topics close to my heart. A list of my books, both about travel and other subjects, can be found here.

 

Sports the Olympics Forgot

Sports YOU should know more about.

This book describes 40 fictional sports including:

  • The Dracula Race in Romania. Here contestants have to run around Sighisoara before cycling to Bran Castle and cook kebabs on the way.
  • Mongol Vegetable Chopping from Russia. Participants have to chop vegetables whilst riding along on horseback.
  • Curling Pool from the USA. Here the players have to score points, by trying to ricochet their curling stones into depressions in the ice.

All the stories are individual and distinct and can be read independently if necessary; a book for the busy individual who perhaps has five minutes to spare to understand the complexities of Bull Pulling or Unicycle Volleyball.

The book is on NetGalley, so you can download it and enjoy reading it for free, though I would appreciate it if you could leave an honest evaluation of the book on NetGalley.

Hunting the Hunters

I have a new book coming out soon – a work of fiction – centring around the incident below. 

At 15:30, the tourist train, or Tren Turistico in Spanish, slows down to almost a crawl as it heads up Costa de San Domingos towards the Museo do Pobo Galego in Santiago de Compostela. From the wall of the Praza do 8 de Marzo, the passengers are only four feet away, an appropriate distance given that the man Pat Walker was about to kill with a hunting knife, was a hunter of wild animals in various parts of the world. 

Walker was an expert thrower of knives in her day job and she realised this was a great place to kill her prey. Her only regret was that she couldn’t display a picture of herself holding the man aloft in triumph to show the world she was a great hunter. 

Walker had purchased appropriate knives from a hunting shop in Pamplona plus a pair of ultra-thin gloves. She paid cash for the items. Walker was now sitting at the Porta do Camino Bar waiting for the time to tick over from 15:23 to 15:24. 

She glanced over to her right at the Terraza do Plaza bar and observed two patrons, both facing away from her. Walker had changed her clothing and added a baseball cap. Another set of clothes and another hat awaited on her hotel bed.  She also had a black plastic bag and a new passport, a new identity, because in just over 6 minutes Pat Walker would be no more.

In the square opposite some people had music blasting out while smoking pot and shouting at each other in that friendly way stoned people have. Everything looked good until Walker noticed a head bobbing up and down in the actual corner she wanted to use for her attack. Who could that be? 

At 15:25 she walked over to the square and glanced over to the corner. She saw the man from the train two days previously. He held a rifle. Walker thought of an idea. She went back to the cafe, put on her gloves, and untied a weight keeping the umbrellas stable on the outside tables. She picked up the weight in one hand and walked as nonchalantly as possible over to the square again, waiting for a bus to pass by before crossing the road. 

Walker had a knife in her other hand, for insurance. She checked the Terraza bar and saw no one. The time approached 15:28. Tourist train 2034BGW came into sight. The man in the corner had eyes only for the train. Walker approached. 

Suddenly, someone was trying to strangle her. An amateur. Walker elbowed him in the stomach and then stabbed her assailant in the neck. The marksman stood up, about to open fire on the train. Walker hit him on the head with the weight. 

The marksman crumpled onto the wall. 

A voice shouted, “Great job, buddy.” 

There was a hail of bullets in reply.

 

Bio: I am a writer. I love writing mysteries and thrillers, especially on topics close to my heart. A list of my books, both about travel and other subjects, can be found here.