The great advantage of writing both stories and novels is that one can be unfaithful to one’s loyal characters and return to them when fancy takes you, or better still, when a publisher or editor requests their appearance!
So here are a few details of my loyal team:
Nell is proud of being chef at Wychbourne Court in Kent in the 1920s. Women chefs were unusual then, but not unknown and Nell was trained by Escoffier. She has no training as a sleuth though, and when murder strikes during a ghost hunt at Wychbourne Court she finds herself plunged headlong into the investigation after Lady Ansley pleads with her to help find the guilty party. Nell rapidly crosses swords with Detective Inspector Melbray of Scotland Yard as she seeks to find the killer.
Jack is a present day classic car detective, working with a specialist Kent police crime unit when he is not at Frogs Hill Classic Car Restorations Ltd, which is located up a long winding lane not far from Pluckley in Kent. He has a team of two for the restoration side of his business, crusty Len Vickers and lively Zoe Grant. Jack follows his heart where women are concerned, but fortunately uses his head for his crime cases. His first eight novels are now published. Jack has his own website and blog, the latter devoted to classic cars, at www.jackcolby.co.uk
Marsh & Daughter
Peter and Georgia Marsh investigate crimes from the past, which often takes them into dangerous territory in the present, when long festering passions are aroused. Peter is an ebullient, wheelchair-bound ex-cop, and his daughter Georgia, having escaped from an early disastrous marriage to a conman, is now married to Luke Frost, the publisher of the books the father and daughter team write about their cases. The sparky relationship between Peter and Georgia is a spur to their resurrecting forgotten or unsolved crimes where injustice has occurred.
Auguste is a master chef, working in the late Victorian and Edwardian periods. He has made full length appearances in eleven novels, as well as many bows in short stories, many published in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine.
Tom is a chimney sweep in Victorian London’s East End, and together with Ned, his former climbing boy apprentice, clears up many a murky crime. Tom has a heart of gold and he and Ned form a strong team. He has appeared in two novels and in short stories in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and elsewhere.
Parson Pennywick is an eighteenth-century parson in the village of Cuckoo Leas and has only appeared so far in short stories, as he is busy with his pastoral work (which includes smuggling). The stories have appeared in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and in two volumes of Best British Crime edited by Maxim Jakubowski.