I'm a crime and historical novelist. I've written nearly fifty books, listed here, three of which have been televised. Awards include the Diamond Dagger of the Crime Writers Association and the Gold Crown of the Historical Writers Association.


July 2024

In April, the Cambridge Literary Festival was almost indecently enjoyable. The audience for our event was large and enthusiastic. Nicola Upson, Elly Griffiths and I were not perhaps as serious as respectable crime writers ought to be but you can't have everything, can you?

Cam Lit Fest 2024

Afterwards, while I was signing books, a party of charming Chinese PhD students came up to me. They had chosen my first novel, Caroline Minuscule in its Chinese translation, for their book club. It was amazing to realise that the book is over forty years old, but still going strong. I happily signed a large number of copies for them. To cap it all, the students presented me with a copy of the Chinese edition of The American Boy, first published in the UK a mere 21 years ago.

American Boy - Chinese

Cambridge had more delights to offer. The following morning I went to the University Library to see the Murder By the Book exhibition. To quote the Library's rather breathless publicity: it's a 'Celebration of 20th Century British Crime Fiction [which] illuminates and celebrates the stories of the UK’s most popular fiction writing, examining crime’s place in our literary history, looking at the Library’s remarkable collection items, and stylish dust jackets, that represent more than a century of British book design.'

Curated by Nicola Upson, the exhibition is a wonderful survey of the genre and its authors. As well as book jackets, it includes other material, such as Agatha Christie's typewriter, Wilkie Collins' travelling writing desk and the correspondence between P.D.James and her publisher about her first novel. To my delight, The Office of the Dead (the concluding novel of my Roth Trilogy) was among the chosen few. Here it is, bracketed by novels by Peter Lovesey and Iain Pears.


We have finally settled on the title of my next novel. This is the book whose working title was Monkshill Park. My editor, my agent and I have decided that it will go out into the world as A Schooling In Murder. After all, the story takes place in a girls' boarding school so that seems fair enough. Set in 1945 during the closing months of World War II, the narrator-detective has the advantage of an unusual viewpoint. HarperCollins UK plan to publish in April 2025.