Good Morning from a grey and dismal Bristol.
As the saying goes, you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, and I have to say I try not to, but do you? Witness for Wendy was published almost four years ago. (Four years! Where did they go?) I thought we had the perfect cover, until Amazon and Facebook told me it was too provocative and it was clear the subject was naked so wouldn’t let me advertise it. So I had another designed, all was well for a year, then Amazon UK told me it had suspended any ads as it was clear the subject was distressed and it might upset readers. I gave up for a while. Then I found the talented, and very patient, Lindsay, and after getting all the wonderful new covers for the Meredith & Hodge books sorted, I asked her to design me a new Witness for Wendy cover, and she did. I was going to put it to a vote, but I loved this one so much I would have ignored you! So, here is the new Wendy cover, now also available in paperback and hardback. I think it’s stunning, what do you think? To celebrate, Witness for Wendy will be on sale at only 99 from 2nd – 9th October. I’m going to advertise it – if you see an ad pop up on your social media, please do share.
In other news, I am getting on with writing the next Meredith & Hodge/Bearing Witness story, simply titled Meredith & Hodge Bear Witness. This is going to be a one off Christmas special, not sure if Meredith could cope with more, and this is where I need your help. Lindsay provided me with some great cover ideas and I’ve narrowed it down to those below. Although it’s Christmas, there has of course been a murder that needs solving. Here’s the opening to give you a feel for it – please remember no editor has seen this 😉
Meredith & Hodge Bear Witness
Jason Wright’s body was shoved into the steel drum head first. His trainers pulled off and pushed into a gap at his side to ensure the lid would close. Manhandled to the corner of the yard, the drum was hidden from view by decrepit garden furniture, old crates, and a tarpaulin.
It was supposed to be moved the next day, but the snow storm put paid to that idea, and then one thing after the other delayed its disposal. There it remained for the next three months.
Eventually cash changed hands, and two travellers with a flatbed truck took it away, believing it to be toxic waste. The final location of Jason Wright’s body unknown to all but those two men.
Sandra Wright drummed her fingers as she listened to the answer machine message. When the beep signalled she could speak, she drew in a deep breath.
“This is a message for DI Jenkins, it’s Sandra Wright, Jason’s mother. I know you’ve done your best, but it’s been almost six years and nothing. I’m going to get some people to help find out what happened to him. They will no doubt want to speak to you, I’d be grateful if you’d help them. I see no reason why you can’t. Even if you can’t, please don’t ob—” Sandra looked at her phone as the machine hung up on her. “Bloody things. Not enough space to leave a proper message.”
She slid her phone into the pocket on the side of her handbag and checked her appearance again. Not bad considering. Taking her coat from the banister she buttoned it, pulled on her hat, and then lifted the bag that held the two files. Her train wasn’t for an hour, and it should only take them thirty minutes to get to the station, but she didn’t want to be late. Today was the day she’d do something positive. Something positive would be good after what the last six years had thrown at her. She turned to her husband.
“I’m ready, and to save time. Yes, I’ll call you when I arrive, if I have any pertinent news, and then when I get back on the train. Are you ready?”
“I have been for an hour. I still think you should have spoken to DI Jenkins first, but I know nothing will change your mind. Why you won’t let me come is beyond me.” He lifted the backpack for her and shook the car keys. “Come on then. Have you got a bottle of water for the journey?”
“I have. If you came, you’d tell them you thought they were wasting their time, same as you told me. But thank you for understanding. I liked Bristol before all this. I wonder how I’ll feel today?”
“Much the same I’m guessing. It’s chilly out, will you be warm enough?”
“In this hat, I’ll probably be stripping off after half an hour.”
Pecking her on the cheek, Patrick Wright held open the car door. “Your carriage awaits.”
A little over two hours later, Sandra stepped down onto the platform at Temple Meads station. After the warmth of the train, the wind was bitter and she pulled her hat down over her ears. Outside she found the queue for the distinctive Bristol blue taxis was short, and in a few minutes the driver was navigating Broadmead, and heading for the offices of Meredith & Hodge…….
I really am going to listen to what the readers say, even though there is one here that I wouldn’t choose. Which one of these would grab your attention and make you want to buy it? Simply drop your answers in the comment section or email me by replying to this newsletter.
That’s it for now, I look forward to seeing how you judge a book by it’s cover. Don’t forget Witness for Wendy isn’t on sale until tomorrow.
Follow me on BookBub and you may choose a FREE ebook from my list of novels. ( boxed sets excluded) Simply click here and you’ll be taken to my author page, and will find the follow button on the top right. If you don’t use your own name for BookBub please drop me a line and let me know what it is and I’ll be in touch.