A murder victim with no face. A media calling for answers. And a detective with a family not averse to a little gentle law-bending.
Newly-promoted British Detective Joe Rafferty and his partner, Sergeant Dafyd Llewellyn in a murder mystery involving the killing of a young woman bludgeoned beyond recognition, with no ID and found in a secure place to which she supposedly had no admission. Who is she? How has she gained access? And who was responsible for her murder?
DOWN AMONG THE DEAD MEN #2
A murder victim with no enemies. A dead patriarch. And a detective who’s struggling.
British Detectives Joe Rafferty and his partner, Dafyd Llewellyn, set out to discover who killed Barbara Longman–a woman with no known enemies. But it soon becomes apparent that the murder has been committed by someone who must have known the victim very well.
DEATH LINE #3
A murdered seer who failed to predict his own future. A partner who refuses to see the murder as an inside job. And a Detective who wonders where the answer lies: past; present; future?
Death Line sees the detective duo trying to solve the murder with his own crystal ball, of the famed ‘seer’, Jasper Moon. Gradually it becomes clear that Jasper Moon was a man of many parts, not all of them appeared very savoury.
THE HANGING TREE #4
A disappearing murder victim no one would miss. A witness destined to haunt him. And a Detective who felt ambivalent about getting a conviction.
The detective pair investigates the murder mystery of the vanishing hanged man. But when the hanged man turns up in Dedman Woods for the second time, the British detectives are able to confirm that he is a man many had reason to hate. Because Maurice Smith, charged years earlier with four child rapes, had escaped on a legal technicality. Was someone acting as the public executioner, dealing out their own form of justice on the legendary Hanging Tree?
If you like the Detective Bill Slider novels, the Dalziel and Pascoe series, Stuart MacBride’s Logan McCrae, Stephanie Plum and LJ Ross’s series, the Rafferty 18-strong series brings the wit, wisdom, and willingness to bend the law with the best of them.
Buy this book to learn about Joe Rafferty, his ne’er-do-well family, and po-faced partner.
18-STRONG MYSTERY SERIES
‘Didnot see the end coming.’ Amazon Reviewer
‘Evans’ humor seriously added to my enjoyment of her book. The series has stand out central characters and clever plots.’ AUNT AGATHA’S BOOKSHOP, ANN ARBOR
Kobo Summer Romance Sale-is just the thing to help your holiday go with a swing!
I’ve got a romantic novel on offer for 99p / 99c. It’s called
THE WISHING FOUNTAIN
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A Gentle, Cornish Romance
After breaking off an abusive relationship with her fiancé, Tessa Morgan hoped for a fresh start in Cornwall: a new job, a new home, a new place.
Second chances. Couldn’t she do with some of those?
But she hadn’t even arrived when things started to go wrong: her ancient Mini had an accident with a motorbike; then it ran out of water. The man who she’d knocked off his bike clearly thought her unsafe to be on the road and told her so. Tessa gave as good as she got. And then she was forced to accept a lift on the back of his bike to the nearest garage, as the cliff-top road was lonely and empty of traffic. She certainly didn’t want to be stranded there for hours.
Feeling humiliated when they arrived at the garage and her reluctant Sir Galahad roared off without a backward glance, she wondered what else could go wrong.
She didn’t have to wait long to find out…
It had the added appeal for the parents that until the day of the coach outing dawned, we could be kept more-or-less in order by the ever-hovering threat of being kept at home for naughtiness, while everyone else made faces at us from the back of the coach. A threat not to be borne. Even David, my second brother, always in scrapes, behaved himself more than usual.
The day arrived. It was beautiful, clear blue skies, and the temperature already soaring by eight in the morning. My three siblings and I squabbled our way on board with the other kids, pushing and shoving, as we all wanted to knab the back seat. The bigger boys staked their superior claim, so that was that.
I didn’t care. I was going to the seaside. I would have sat anywhere, ever with the adults at the front.
Someone started a singsong. We sang to the halfway point, where we had a toilet break (this was back in the 60’s when coaches were more spartan than they are now). One of the dad’s suggested a quick visit to the pub. This wasn’t too popular with us kids, of course, as we saw the tide going out on our seaside adventure.
But the grown-ups bribed us with crisps and lemonade and disappeared with alacrity pub-wards. We must have played up, making a nuisance of ourselves, asking everyone who went in to tell the parents to hurry up. Anyway, they soon got fed-up of our whining every time the door was opened and being accosted about rowdy kids by strangers, because within half-an-hour we were back on the coach. Off again. The next stop would be Folkstone! Maybe that’s what gave me the idea to try bribery and corruption by my main suspect in Dead Before Morning, my #1 Rafferty & Llewellyn Mystery!
You can’t eat yet
By this time, my two brothers were starving, and started riffling through mum’s neatly packed bags. This earned them a smack and a ‘Wait till we get there.’
My sister Maria and I sniggered as the greedy pair got a backhander. We, of course, were models of decorum (though I have a vague memory of being sick with excitement on the coach floor).
Are we nearly there?
The singsong started up again. Soon we were asking, ‘Are we nearly there?’ And this carried on for the next half-hour, till, finally, as we sighted the sea for the first time, we answered our own question, as we cried, ‘We’re here!’
We reach Folkstone
It was a gorgeous day. So often in England, a day that starts bright with promise will, by early afternoon, have turned into a damp squib, with grey skies blotting out the sun. But not today! Today the sky was still as deep a blue as it had been at eight in the morning. Sea gulls swooped, crying their seaside cry.
Then, we were clamouring to get in the water. We were told to wait till our lunch had gone down. I couldn’t believe it. Why were all the adults, after promising us an enjoyable day at the seaside, putting so many obstacles in the way of our enjoyment? First it was the pub; then we must eat lunch; now it was, ‘wait till your lunch goes down!’ I’d have suspected a conspiracy, if I’d known such a word at ten.
Into the sea
But eventually mum announced that sufficient time had passed, and we were allowed into our swimsuits.
At last! We raced like lemmings over a cliff, eager to feel the lap of the water around our legs. It was icy, even on a scorching day; the water around Britain’s coast is always chilly. But we splashed each other, uncaring of the cold water and how it made our teeth chatter.
Twenty minutes later we came out of the water, looking for food. The sea air had even given Maria and I, normally picky eaters, hearty appetites.
The case of the disappearing grown-ups
Then one of the men in the party said a visit to a seaside watering hole was obligatory. No sooner were the words out of his mouth than, as one, all the adults disappeared pub-wards, pausing only to shout instructions to, ‘Behave yourselves.’
It was a scorching day and it wasn’t long before the cool water lured us again. Soon we were bobbing about in the waves, splashing one another, squealing when one of our bare feet landed on a sharp pebble, but thoroughly enjoying such freedom.
It didn’t last long. At least for me. Not many more minutes had gone by when a bigger wave swept in. As the youngest (and smallest), the wave knock me off my feet. Down I went, into a green world, strangely echoing, with distant shouts mingling with the whoosh of water in my ears.
My flapping arms brought me to the surface again. The sky was still a brilliant blue. I opened my mouth to scream, but before I could emit as much as a squeak, it filled with water and down I went again into that green, green world, with its whooshing water making everything seem vaguely unreal.
Did my life flash before me?
I remember thinking, ‘I’m going to die.’ But drowning I found a curiously peaceful experience, so it didn’t unduly bother me. Weird. My life didn’t flash before me. But I wouldn’t turn ten until October, so there wasn’t much life to flash.
Going down for the third time
Peaceful or not, I was still, involuntarily, flapping my arms, and they brought me to the surface again. Again my mouth filled with seawater before I could scream or gulp in air. I was going down for the third (and presumably, the last) time, when somebody must have finally noticed that Geraldine was drowning, not waving.
They shouted for Tommy, the only boy in the party who could swim. Tommy hauled me out and dumped me like a sack of spuds on the beach, while I coughed, spluttered and said hello to my lunch.
My mum was sent for, not too pleased at being hauled from the pub, until somebody explained what had happened.
Just think-No Rafferty & Llewellyn British Mystery Series!
This is my main achievement in life. If I’d died before I reached the age of ten, I’d have nothing to show for my life apart from some running medals.
Don’t be too hard on her. Admittedly, it was irresponsible to leave four kids, none of whom could swim, on the beach, while the adults all went to the pub. But poor mum rarely escaped her child-rearing duties. Day after dutiful day, there she’d be, arguing with the neighbours when David got in trouble again, sitting in the hospital for ages while one of us got patched up after our latest mishap. Year after endless year. Looking back, I wonder how she stood it.
That was the end of my day at the seaside. I wasn’t allowed in the sea again all that hot summer afternoon. I couldn’t even make sandcastles as it was a pebbly beach. Instead I watched my siblings having fun. But the sea had lost its enchantment for me in any case. Nearly drowning will do that.
Mum booked swimming lessons–but only for me!
One thing stands out from that day (apart from my brush with death). My mum was around the swimming baths as soon as they opened the next day to arrange swimming lessons, presumably thanking the fates that she’d still got four kids.
But the swimming lessons were only for me. The other three, who couldn’t swim either – even David, my mum’s favourite – could drown!
Mum’s cock-eyed logic still makes me chuckle even today.
What about you? Have you had a brush with death, but lived to tell the tale? Do write and tell me, and, with your permission, I’ll feature the best of them on my blog.
At last, after months, and months, I have been able to customise my website. Each time I tried (and failed), I got one of those irritating messages that said it was unresponsive and I could either Wait or Exit. I was tearing my hair out that I’d wasted half a day on this malarkey.
I eventually realised that it might be one of my plugins that were the culprit (slow or what?). They’ve been behind every other aggravation I’ve experienced, so when I thought about it, one or more of these was the obvious suspect.
Plugin Problem Solved
After I stripped out all of my plugins, barring the few that are self-controlled, I could customise. Amazed? Delighted? I’ll say. I might even dare to be more regular in my blogging in future (if that’s not tempting the fates to do dire things–which it probably is).
Bright and Shiny
Repeat after me. I must not get new plugins in the manner of a person seeking happiness in retail therapy. It will only bring misery and pain. So these are my new rules to live by:
insert only one new plugin at a time
find out exactly how it works
delete it the minute you suspect it of sabotage
don’t agonise–ask a tech-savvy person for help
this applies equally to all technology. If you don’t understand it, and think you never will–don’t install it. Technology is such a time-suck if you weren’t brought-up with it.