I was in Waterstone’s Piccadilly on Tuesday and Barry Forshaw’s Crime Fiction: A Reader’s Guide caught my eye. I’d been meaning to buy a copy since it came out towards the end of last year. It’s the kind of book I love: short reviews of hundreds of books, accounts of different trends in crime fiction, and biographies of the most important figures in the genre. There are also entries on related films and books. And then there’s the game of looking to see if your favourite writers have been included (what? no Rex Stout? no Fredric Brown?). There’s the pleasure of being reminded of books you’ve enjoyed and of discovering new authors to add to the already tottering reading pile.
Barry is the doyen of crime fiction reviewing and appears to have read absolutely everything by absolutely everyone. All the same, when I turned to the back and riffled through the index, it was with no expectation of finding my own name there. After all, I’m hardly a big hitter. So the thrill was all the greater when I saw that Deep Water, the first of my Katie Flanagan novels, is one of the books that Barry reviews.
It makes it even more of a pleasure to recommend this splendid book, which offers hours of happy browsing and is surely essential reading for the crime fiction aficionado. Great cover, too.
This was the view from our landing window last week after the arrival of the Beast from the East. The snow has all gone now, thank goodness. Although it was so beautiful – what fabulous icicles – it was also very inconvenient. I didn’t get my car out for a week and like many other people I had to cancel a lot of plans. I know, I know, if I lived in Canada or Russia or Finland, I’d think nothing of it. But I don’t live in any of those places and several winters can go by without this kind of snowfall and bitter cold.
One or two friends pointed out that things could have been worst and that at least I wasn’t stranded in Antarctica like the main character in Cold, Cold Heart. Which leads me on to a bit of PR and a couple of bargains. The e-book of Cold, Cold Heart has been reduced for a limited period to £4.19. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cold-Heart-Snowbound-stone-cold-killer/…/1782642161.
And Deep Water, the first in series, is a snip at £1.19 ($1.49 in the US), also for a limited period. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Deep-Water-Christine-Poulson/dp/1782642145
Kind friends and readers have asked me when Deep Water would be available in the States and I am happy to say that US publication was on 27 January. I was lucky enough to have an American publisher for my first two novels, but not since, so I’m delighted to published in the US again.
A writer’s life is full of ups and down – it can be like a literary game of snakes and ladders. My good friend, Martin Edwards invited me to write about this for his splendid blog, Do You Write Under Your Own Name?, You can read my post here: http://doyouwriteunderyourownname.blogspot.co.uk/2016/10/the-ups-and-downs-of-crime-writers-life.html
I am finding it hard to find time to blog at the moment, but here is an article, ‘All in a Day’s Work,’ that I have just written for Barry Forshaw’s splendid website: crimetime.co.uk: http://www.crimetime.co.uk/mag/index.php/showarticle/4741
It’s about how I found out about the science in my new novel, Deep Water, and the benefits of getting out of the study and into the lab.
Today my new novel is out. I am delighted with the great job that my publishers have done and it was a thrill to get my advance copy. What a terrific cover! I couldn’t be more pleased with it.
I turned to the acknowledgements and there at the end was this: ‘and last but not least, my husband, Peter Blundell Jones.’ Those were the last words in my book, written, of course, months ago, before we knew that Peter was ill. How fitting they are. That is all I really want to say for today. But if you’d like more, I’ve been interviewed over on Sue Hepworth’s blog, and you can read the post at www.suehepworth.com
It is always a slightly anxious moment when your publisher sends you the cover for your new book and asks for your comments. But when I saw the cover for Deep Water a couple of weeks ago, all I could say was ‘Wow!’ It’s simple, elegant, and striking. The novel begins with a death in a clinical trial so the image couldn’t be more appropriate. And I love the strap line, too.
It’s so important what your book wears to go out into the world. First impressions do count when someone is browsing in a bookshop or on-line. Publisher have the final say and sometimes they chose something that they think will sell even if it doesn’t reflect the content of the book. That’s not fair on author or reader. It happened to my friend Sue (over at SueHepworth.com) whose publishers picked a pink and frilly chick-lit cover for Zuzu’s Petals, her comedy of middle-aged love and loss. It wasn’t appropriate and she hated it.
I have been lucky on the whole with my covers – I especially liked the US editions of Murder is Academic and Stage Fright – but I really think this is the best so far.
Deep Water will be published by Lion Fiction in October in the UK and in January in the US.