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Thursday, 25 June 2015

A Long Break ...

This Blog has been suffering from some serious neglect for a while now. This is due, in large part, to my being heavily involved in writing a new historical novel which is now in the final stages of pre-publication editing, and partly due to a few changes of publishers for some of my other titles. Both Out of Time and The Enemy is Within are now out of print. The first is demanding a lot of time at the moment as it needed a massive overhaul to meet my new publisher's expectations, the second will need some work as well.

The good news is that Harry Heron; Midshipman's Journey and The Outer Edge are both selling well and A Baltic Affair is maintaining a steady trickle of sales as well.

From my perspective, the exciting news is that my latest book, Limehouse Boys, will be appearing in the latter half of July. The story is set in the early 1830s and revolves around the 'adventures' of a trio of orphans. It was inspired by some research into life for those in London's teeming East End at that period. Healthcare was almost non-existent, poverty was rife, corruption governed access to just about everything and crime gangs held sway. Exploitation of those desperate enough to seek a place in the Workhouses, or unfortunate enough to be orphaned and committed to one, faced a very harsh future.

The research left me shocked in some instances, angry in others, and it turned up tragedies, miscarriages and abuses in Justice, and some remarkable heroes whose efforts seem to have gone largely unrewarded. It is fascinating to read that Parliament fought tooth and nail to protect certain 'privileges' and even to perpetuate, in the interests of profits and commercial competitiveness, the abuses of child labour. Speeches were even made defending the abuses, and in some cases denying them, or claiming that the complainants were idle or lazy and exaggerating matters.

I hope readers will enjoy it, I have dedicated it to all those who have risen above bad beginnings and made their own way in the world.

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