Meet Our Authors
From tales spun for her teddies when she was a child (usually about mermaids) to film scripts, plays and novels, Alexandra Walsh has always been a storyteller. Words are her world. For over 25 years, she has been a journalist writing for a wide range of publications including national newspapers and glossy magazines. She spent some years working in the British film industry, as well as in television and radio: researching, advising, occasionally presenting and always writing. Books dominate Alexandra’s life. She reads endlessly and tends to become a bit panicky if her next three books are not lined up and waiting. Characters, places, imagery all stay with her and even now she finds it difficult to pass an old wardrobe without checking it for a door to Narnia. As for her magical letter when she was 11, she can only assume her cat caught the owl! Alexandra’s other passion is history, particularly the untold tales of women. Whether they were queens or paupers, their voices resonate with their stories, not only about their own lives but about ours, too. The women of the Tudor court have inspired her novels. Researching and writing The Marquess House Trilogy (Book One: The Catherine Howard Codex) has brought together her love of history, mysteries and story telling.
Get in touchYou can contact Alexandra Walsh on Twitter or check out her website.
Coming soonThe Marquess House Trilogy begins with The Catherine Howard Codex, a mystery alternating between the court of Henry VIII and present-day Pembrokeshire.
Austin Hernon lives in Nottinghamshire with wife Mandy. Born in the middle of World War II and spending lots of nights in an air raid shelter, it was no surprise to find him following a military career when he survived. Twenty six years, mostly in the REME where he was a mechanic specialising in underwater recovery. A world-wide traveller and someone who has spent many years living abroad he is unwilling to give up that habit now that he is retired and travels widely. First gaining a degree in Social Sciences before he took up the challenge and has so far produced four historical fiction novels with another in progress.
Get in touch with AustinTake a look at his website: www.history-reimagined.co.uk And find out more about his books on his Facebook pages: History Reimagined Robert – The Wayward Prince Battle 1066
Coming soonThe Women Who Saved England is a re-imagining of the true story of Nicholaa of Lincoln and Matilda of Laxton who fought for the royalists in the tumultuous years following King John's death in 1216. The story of the heroic defence of Lincoln castle against the French invasion of 1216/17, by the female constable, Nicholaa de la Haye, ably supported by her friend from across the Trent Valley, Matilda of Laxton. Both women discharged their duties with courage, determination, and success. The Women Who Saved England is due out in 2018.
Cathy Bussey is an author, journalist and hopeless romantic who wrote her first book at the tender age of six. Entitled Tarka the Otter, it was a shameless rip-off of the Henry Williamson classic of the same name, and the manuscript was lost after she sent it to her pen-pal and never heard a jot from her since. Fortunately reception to her writing became more favourable and she spent ten years working for a range of newspapers and magazines covering everything from general elections and celebrity scandals to cats stuck up trees and village fetes. She has been freelance since 2011 and written for The Telegraph, Red Online, Total Women’s Cycling and other lifestyle and cycling publications and websites. She is the author of three non-fiction books and her debut and thankfully non-plagiarised novel Summer at Hollyhock House will be published by Sapere Books this year. Cathy Bussey lives on the leafy London/Surrey border with her husband, two children and a dog with only two facial expressions, hungry and guilty. Her hobbies include mountain biking, photography, wandering around outside getting lost, fantasising about getting her garden under control, reading, looking at pretty things on Instagram and drinking tea.
Get in contact with CathyYou can find her on Instagram @cathybussey1, on Twitter @CathyBussey or visit her website cathybussey.com.
Coming soonCathy’s debut novel is due out in summer 2018. Summer at Hollyhock House is a fun, flirty summer romance following one woman’s journey as she returns to the scenes of her childhood to find her path to happiness.
Sir Cecil Beaton (1904-1980) was a photographer of considerable distinction, who photographed most of the interesting figures of the twentieth century, from the Queen and Queen Mother, the Windsors, stars such as Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe, to figures of the 1960s such as Rudolph Nureyev, the Rolling Stones and Twiggy. He was also a noted war photographer and took many fashion photographs for Condé Nast. He was also a man of considerable style, an arbiter of taste, designer of sets and costume for opera, ballet and theatre, an inveterate traveller, and throughout this long career, he was a diarist from 1922 until 1974 (and even a little later). During his lifetime he published six volumes – The Wandering Years – 1961 The Years Between – 1965 The Happy Years - 1972 The Strenuous Years – 1973 The Restless Years - 1976 The Parting Years - 1978 A composite volume, Self Portrait with Friends, edited by Richard Buckle, was published in 1979. Later there were two further volumes, The Unexpurgated Beaton (2002), and Beaton in the Sixties (2003), both edited by Hugo Vickers. Cecil Beaton won three Oscars for his work on the films, Gigi and My Fair Lady. He was awarded a CBE in 1957, and knighted for his service to the arts in 1972.
Christine Evans was brought up in Moss Side, Manchester and then moved to Wythenshawe, a sprawling council estate at the edge of south Manchester. Leaving grammar school at sixteen, she went to work in a bank. After Christine married she gave up work to have her children and, after a spell of temping, worked at the Bishop of Manchester’s office for twenty years. During that time she began night school classes for creative writing. One of the tutors suggested that she send off some of her short stories to magazines and her first short story was published in 1999 in Ireland’s Own. Since then she has had over two hundred short stories published in various magazines, mostly in People’s Friend but also in Ireland’s Own, Take a Break, Bella, My Weekly and Yours. All sorts of idea set Christine off, memories, funny things that happened to people or someone’s love story, not to mention eavesdropping. She has written three serials for People’s Friend and “Song of the Shuttle” began as one of those serials. She became interested in the Lancashire Cotton Famine caused by the American Civil war. The Famine rarely makes an appearance in any history books, so she decided to weave a story around it, set in Lancashire and America.
Coming soonSong of the Shuttle is the first in a historical saga series, dealing with the lives of the people affected by the Lancashire Cotton Famine.
Claire Gray lives in the South Lakes with her husband and two small children. She studied Creative Writing at the Cumbria Institute of the Arts, which no longer exists, having been absorbed by the University of Cumbria. She graduated in 2006 and then went on to complete a journalism course at Darlington College. That same year, she won a Northern Promise Award from New Writing North, and her work was featured in their anthology, entitled Ten Years On. Claire now works as a freelance copywriter and continues to write short stories, some of which have been published in magazines and online. Recently, she has been guest editor for the prose section of SpeakEasy Magazine, which showcases Cumbrian writing. In 2015, she received editing advice from The Literary Consultancy through their Free Read scheme. They subsequently felt that her manuscript, Running in Circles, showed potential, and began approaching literary professionals on Claire’s behalf. This resulted in the novel being placed with Sapere Books, and Claire is very excited to be a part of their inaugural launch list.
Get in touchFollow Claire on Twitter to keep up with her news.
Coming soonRunning in Circles is an international thriller set on a fictional Thai island in the aftermath of a deadly explosion.
Cora Harrison was born in Cobh, County Cork, Ireland, but lived in Cork city for most of her life until she was twenty-one. When she was about seven years old, she became very ill and between the ages of seven and thirteen she hardly went to school. She used have to stay in bed at home, or in hospital, for weeks at a time. She passed the time making up stories. Occasionally, she wrote out her stories, but had very bad handwriting, and not too good spelling either, so mostly she just made them up. When Cora was about fourteen, she recovered and began to attend school normally. She went to University College Cork and after she graduated she went to England. She got married to Frank and had two children: William and Ruth. She has one little grandson, Shane. While her children were growing up, she became a primary school teacher and loved teaching history to the children. Some of her happiest memories are of making shields and armour of cardboard and then going to fight the Battle of Hastings at the very spot where it took place almost a thousand years ago. Cora really enjoyed her time teaching but she enjoys writing stories even more. It still gives her a thrill to see her books in the shops!
Get in touchGet in touch with Cora through her website.
Coming soonCora is writing a new British crime series, set in Kent. The first book in the series, False Accusations, is due out this summer. The second and third books in the series are due to be released in 2019 and 2020.
David Field was born in post-war Nottingham, and educated at Nottingham High School. After obtaining a Law degree he became a career-long criminal law practitioner and academic, emigrating in 1989 to Australia, where he still lives. Combining his two great loves of History and the English language he began writing historical novels as an escape from the realities of life in the criminal law, but did not begin to publish them until close to fulltime retirement, when digital publishing offered a viable alternative to literary agencies, print publishers and rejection slips. Now blessed with all the time in the world, his former hobby has become a full time occupation as he enjoys life in rural New South Wales with his wife, sons and grandchildren to keep him firmly grounded in the reality of the contemporary world.
Get in touch with DavidYou can contact David through his website or via Facebook.
Doreen Tovey was born in Bristol in 1918 and raised by her grandparents, her love of animals was fostered by her grandmother who was an inveterate rescuer of anything in need. The family shared its home with cats, dogs and an owl called Gladstone. Having attended grammar school she had a couple of boring jobs before joining Imperial Tobacco as a typist/secretary before graduating to their public relations department. It was here that she met her future husband, Rene (called Charles in the books). Doreen Tovey was the author of more than a dozen books about the life she and her husband shared with their Siamese cats and other animals in Somerset, England. She was president of the Siamese Cat Club, President of the West of England Cat Club and President of the RSPCA for North Somerset. Doreen passed away in 2008.
Coming soonSapere Books are delighted to be reissuing Doreen's books, beginning in 2018. We currently have plans to republish seven of Doreen's books, charming tales of life surrounded by various pets, most importantly, cats. We are happy to announce that all author proceeds from the sales of Doreen's books will go to the North Somerset branch of the RSPCA.
Elizabeth Bailey feels lucky to have found several paths that have given her immense satisfaction - acting, directing, teaching and, by no means least, writing. Through the years, each path has crossed the other, honing and deepening her abilities in each sphere. She has been privileged to work with some wonderful artistic people, and been fortunate enough to find publishers who believed in her and set her on the road. To invent a world and persuade others to believe in it, live in it for a while, is the sole aim of the novelist. Elizabeth's own love of reading has never abated, and if she can give a tithe of the pleasure to others as she has received herself, it's worth all the effort.
Coming soonSapere Books have acquired the rights to the third book in Elizabeth’s ‘Lady Fan’ mysteries, set in Regency England. We are reissuing the first two books in the series, alongside the latest novel The Opium Purge, due to be released later this year.
Elizabeth Lemarchand was born in 1906. She became a teacher at The Godophin School in Salisbury. Her first book Death of an Old Girl was published in 1967. Elizabeth passed away in 2000 at the age of 94.
Coming soonElizabeth wrote 17 books throughout her life in the acclaimed Pollard and Toye detective series. Sapere Books is delighted to be reissuing the series beginning in 2018. 1. Death of an Old Girl (1967) 2. The Affacombe Affair (1968) 3. Alibi for a Corpse (1969) 4. Death on Doomsday (1971) 5. Cyanide With Compliments (1972) 6. No Vacation from Murder (1973) 7. Buried in the Past (1974) 8. Step in the Dark (1976) 9. Unhappy Returns (1977) 10. Suddenly While Gardening (1978) 11. Change for the Worse (1980) 12. Nothing to Do with the Case (1981) 13. Troubled Waters (1982) 14. The Wheel Turns (1983) 15. Light Through the Glass (1984) 16. Who Goes Home? (1986) 17. The Glade Manor Murder (1988)
I first started writing as a child; mainly poetry, but there was one horrific novel (mercifully, never finished) in which a woman gives birth to a hideously deformed child in a thunderstorm. While I was bringing up my four children, I began writing and selling short stories to magazines before the enforced immobility following a fractured spine gave me the time to tackle my first novel, Dead Ernest. My main career was in nursing, but I also trained and worked for many years as a relationship counsellor with Relate. Widowed in 1992, I re-married and now live with my husband in Wiltshire, where I enjoy riding my horse in the beautiful Pewsey Vale, reading, writing, singing in our large church choir and keeping up with my grandchildren. I also write regularly to a prisoner on Texas Death Row and do local voluntary work with homeless and vulnerable adults. All my books are very strongly relationship-based. My writing has also been affected by my widowhood and my experiences with my Relate clients, and my books sometimes include issues of death and bereavement. Strangely (and not by design) they all seem to include pet animal funerals (not a subject which normally occupies my mind!). Get in touch with Frances You can contact Frances through her website or via Facebook.
Gail Lindenberg enjoys her home in Phillips Ranch, CA with her husband Gene and a furry cat named Smudge. Retired after thirty-seven years of teaching in public schools, Gail spends her time caring for her mother and her granddaughter. Gail wrote He Wrote Her Every Day while recovering from cancer. She presented a hard-cover version to her mother as a 90th birthday gift. Once the chemo fog lifted, she joined a writer's workshop to produce better edited editions. Gail often says that she felt as though her father was watching over her shoulder while she wrote about his letters. “Sometimes,” she notes, “I think he may have been shaking his head a bit.”
Get in contact with GailYou can contact Gail and read more about the background of her book on her website.
Coming soonHe Wrote Her Every Day tells the story of a soldier who left his bride to enlist in WWII and bring his brother home from prison camp in Germany. He promised her that he would write every day. She saved every letter, and stored them carefully away. Sixty-six years later, she unearthed the box and gave it to her daughter to preserve.
Graham Brack hails from Sunderland and met his wife Gillian in Aberdeen where they were both studying pharmacy. After their degrees Gillian returned to Cornwall and Graham followed. This is now called stalking but in 1978 it was termed “romantic”. They have two children, Andrew and Hannah, and two grandchildren, Miranda and Sophie. Graham’s foray into crime writing began in 2010 when he entered the Crime Writers’ Association’s Debut Dagger competition and was highly commended for The Outrageous Behaviour of Left-Handed Dwarves, in which the world was introduced to Lt Josef Slonský of the Czech police. The Book of Slaughter and Forgetting followed and Sapere Books will be publishing the next in the Slonský series. In 2014 and 2016 Graham was shortlisted for the Debut Dagger again. The earlier novel, The Allegory of Art and Science, is set in 17th century Delft and features the philosophy lecturer and reluctant detective Master Mercurius. Sapere Books will publish it in 2018.
Get in touch with GrahamYou can check out Graham's website here and follow him on Twitter here.
Coming soonSapere Books will be publishing the first historical mystery in Graham's new series, the Master Meercurius Mysteries. We will also be reissuing the first two books in the Lieutenant Slonský Mysteries and publishing book three for the first time.
J C Briggs taught English for many years in schools in Cheshire, Hong Kong and Lancashire. She now lives in a cottage in Cumbria. The Murder of Patience Brooke is the first novel featuring Charles Dickens as a detective and his partner, Superintendent Sam Jones of Bow Street. The idea of Dickens as a detective came about when she read Dickens’s articles about the London police in his periodical Household Words. Dickens was fascinated by police investigation and by murder, in particular – there are plenty of murderers in his writing, and Dickens is credited with the creation of the first literary detective in Inspector Bucket who solves the murder of Mr Tulkinghorn in Bleak House. The second in the series is Death at Hungerford Stairs (2015), and the third, Murder by Ghostlight, set in Manchester and London, was published in 2016.
Get in touchYou can check out Jean's website or follow her on Twitter or Facebook.
Coming soonSapere Books will be publishing Jean's new Charles Dickens mystery in 2018, The Quickening and The Dead November 1850: Annie Deverall, aged fifteen, is on remand in Newgate gaol, accused of the murder of fashionable Doctor Lancelot Plume; Lavinia Gray vanishes on the eve of her wedding; and Evie Finch dies of septicaemia in a filthy lodging house. Something sinister connects the three girls. Dickens and Superintendent Jones of Bow Street take on the case and discover a dark underworld of baby-farming, abortion, suicide and murder, an underground network of Italian criminals, a psychopathic boy, and the long shadow of a crime committed a decade earlier. The old Tyburn River overflows, bringing to the surface terrible events which the two investigators must confront if they are to save Annie Deverall from the gallows.
Jean Stubbs was born in 1926 in Lancashire. Even as a small child she made up stories and plays – her younger brother a captive audience and ‘bit part player’. Jean’s book writing began with The Rose Grower, published in 1962. She lived in London for over 20 years, thriving on city life and later its publishing world. Her writings included innumerable short stories for magazines and collections, some of which have been adapted for radio. She also ran seminars and discussion groups at writer’s summer schools and was appointed for a year as writer-in-residence for Avon. Her books include three Victorian-set crime novels featuring the charismatic Inspector Lintott, and she also based some of her fiction on historical figures like Henry VII. She was mostly published in the UK by Macmillan and by St Martins Press in the US. In 1975 Jean moved to Cornwall with her husband, to live in a small stone cottage on the Lizard peninsula – a sea change. Once more Jean’s creativity responded to her surroundings. This very different Cornish life inspired a number of books, several set in Cornwall, and the four novels comprising The Brief Chronicles, set in industrial-age Her final novel – I’m a Stranger Here Myself – was published in 2004. Jean died in 2012.
Coming soonJean Stubbs’ classic novel of Henry VII, An Unknown Welshman, is a thrilling and well-told story of the rise of the Tudor dynasty. Available on pre-order from April 2018, it will be released this summer. Jean's Inspector Lintott Mysteries will be also be released in 2018.
Keith Moray was born in St Andrews and studied medicine at the University of Dundee in Scotland. He lives in England now, within arrow-shot of the ruins of a medieval castle, the scene of two of his historical novels, The Pardoner’s Crime and The Fool’s Folly. He is a part-time doctor, medical journalist and novelist, writing in several genres. He writes historical fiction and crime as Keith Moray, non-fiction as Keith Souter and westerns as Clay More. Curiously, his medical background finds its way into most of his writing. He is a member of various writers’ organisations, including the Crime Writers’ Association, Medical Journalists Association, International Thriller Writers, Western Writers of America and a past vice-president of Western Fictioneers, a professional organisation of Western writers. In his spare time, Keith enjoy the movies, theatre and making bread. He plays golf, tennis and runs at carthorse speed. As a frustrated actor, he has found occasional solace as a supporting artist, but enough said about that! Keith lives in West Yorkshire in England with his wife Rachel and whichever of his children and grandchildren happen to pop home.
Get in touch with KeithYou can check out Keith's website or follow him on Facebook or Twitter.
Linda's love affair with the printed word started when she was two, when her mother, a keen reader, taught her the alphabet. She has had her nose in a book ever since. By her teens, she had developed an absorbing and enduring interest in true crime and history and a special fascination for the Victorian era. 2003 saw the launch of her first published book, Chloroform: the Quest for Oblivion. Several true crime books were to follow, most recently The Secret Poisoner, a study of nineteenth century poison murder, and three biographies, including The Marquess of Queensberry: Wilde’s Nemesis. Linda's first fiction series, the Frances Doughty Mysteries set in 1880s Bayswater, features a clever and determined lady detective. Through her adventures, Linda explores aspects of Victorian life such as diet, education, medicine, women’s rights, fear of premature burial and the fashion for cycling. In her second series, set in 1870s Brighton, Mina Scarletti is a deceptively diminutive lady who writes horror stories and exposes the activities of fraudulent spirit mediums. Linda is delighted to be an active member of the Crime Writers’ Association, and was elected Vice-Chair in 2017. Get in touch with Linda You can get in touch with Linda via her website or on Facebook. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram. See a full list of Linda’s books on Goodreads. Sign up to her newsletter to hear about Linda's news and exclusive content.
Following a childhood spent writing her first books, most notably, Our Book about Jesus – a self-help guide for fellow young Catholics, and, The Sleepover – a compelling tale of a midnight feast, shockingly intercepted by fictitious parents with badly drawn hands, Patricia Caliskan always liked to play with words. Patricia first saw her name misspelt in print aged 17, interviewing hungover rock stars and illegible actors for an Arts and Entertainment magazine. After graduating from the University of Liverpool, Patricia joined Trinity Mirror Newsgroup, working as editor across a portfolio of lifestyle magazine titles. Patricia likes a good pair of boots, wearing perfume with her pyjamas, and laughter. Lots of laughter. Because without it life feels far too grown up for her liking. Told with mischievous humour, Patricia’s stories explore family dynamics, office politics, and the divergent roles of women throughout their lives. Her debut novel, Awful by Comparison, was published by Endeavour Press in August 2016.
Get in touchYou can get in touch with Patricia on her website or follow her on Instagram, Twitter or Goodreads.
Coming soonPatricia’s second novel is due to be released in July 2018. Girlfriend, Interrputed is a hilarious novel of one woman’s journey from carefree twenty-something to step-mother-in-training. When the love of Ella’s life turns out to be somebody else’s dad, their love affair soon becomes a family affair. Ready or not, Ella’s joined the Robinson family and getting it right for Dan’s kids means getting it right for everyone but can Ella actually manage to include herself in this mix?
Rebecca Jenkins was born into history and never recovered. Her first home was a 15th Century college house in Oxford High Street with the red and white roses of the War of the Roses carved over the door. In her early teens she was such a fan of D’Orczy’s Scarlett Pimpernel, she took up fencing determined to master the “prise de fer”. Her library began at the same age – collecting cheap between-the-wars editions of diaries and memoirs from the Georgian era. She spent the second half of her childhood in Switzerland but returned to Oxford University to take a degree in history. Sewing a loose buckle on a towering ugly sister’s shoe aged 16, as a dresser at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester, Rebecca discovered a fascination with theatre and celebrity that later led to her first non-fiction book, a biography of Georgian actress and anti-slavery campaigner, Fanny Kemble (The Reluctant Celebrity, Simon & Schuster 2005). Raif Jarrett, the returning soldier and detective of her Regency mystery series first appeared in The Duke’s Agent in 1997. Despite many the distractions of a busy career in communications and PR, his world remains her first love. In between producing a book on The First London Olympics, 1908 (Piatkus Little Brown 2012), the opening novels of the Faith Morgan series (as Martha Ockley - Monarch Books), and serving as a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at York St John University, she managed to return to write the second book of the series, Death of a Radical. She is presently at work on the third Jarrett mystery.
Get in touch with RebeccaYou can check out Rebecca's website and follow her on Twitter here.
Coming soonSapere Books will be reissuing The Duke' Agent and Death of a Radical, the first two books in Rebecca's Regency mystery series.
Sarah Herman is a British writer and editor. She’s worked for film, fashion and food magazines, including Star Wars Insider, Total Film and The Ingénue, and has written over twenty non-fiction books on topics as varied as unsolved crimes, The Archers and Facebook. She is also an expert on LEGO, having authored a number of books on the subject. She currently resides in the fine city of Norwich, England.
Get in touch with SarahYou can find her blogging at sarahherman.co.uk and tweeting @hermanatee.
Coming soonSarah Herman’s Classic Guide to Famous Assassinations is due to be released in July 2018. Spanning from Ancient Rome to the twentieth century, Herman sheds light on some of the most shocking murders in our history.
Shirley Harrison began broadcasting with Uncle Mac on the BBC’s Children's Hour in 1954. She wrote for most national magazines and newspapers, turning to non-fiction after the death of her husband in 1982. Her best known is the internationally best selling The Diary of Jack the Ripper in which she takes readers on a journey back to the home of the Ripper in Liverpool and to the scene and execution of the most infamous murders in history. It has all the pace and drama of a thriller and, being based on historical archives remains utterly convincing. Because of her inexhaustible curiosity, at the age of 82, Shirley's professional life has covered a colourful range of subjects that have caught her imagination including Father Christmas, cider, Winnie the Pooh, King James II’s best loved brothel in Paris Gardens, Southwark, and Suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst resulting in her biography: Sylvia Pankhurst: The Rebellious Suffragette.