Guest Author Patrick Brigham

Today our guest is Patrick Brigham, author of yesterday’s book Judas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery. Here is a link to the post if you missed it. http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-4YB

Patrick Brigham

Let’s find out more about Patrick.

1)  Where is your home town?

I was born in a village just outside the town of Reading in Berkshire England.

2) How long have you been writing books?       

I started to write seriously in the late 80’s at a time when the UK was enjoying one of its many economic crashes and I had to put my day job on the back burner, along with the many others who got hammered alongside me. A friend suggested that I joined a writers club in Wimbledon where I was encouraged to write. It was where I met two quite well known authors, who obviously hadn’t joined in order to learn how to write, but went there because they said that they enjoyed the company of other writers and the inspiration this promoted. Writing is a lonely profession.

3) What was the key idea which started the storyline for you of Judas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery?       

Because I was the editor of a news magazine in Bulgaria, I was fascinated by the prospect of murdering myself as a fictional character, which is what seems to happening to Liam Side in Judas Goat. So I bumped myself off on a Narrow Boat, after which the story started to develop. I had always been very anti arms trade, seeing it as a scourge  which causes so many unnecessary deaths and so that became one of the main themes of this book. It underlined the fact that for someone to pull a trigger, first there has to be a trigger to pull!

4) I believe you’ve lived and worked in Bulgaria, how long were you there for?       

I lived there for nearly twenty years although I’d been there regularly, before the so called political changes in 1989, and met many of the Communist players.

5)  Can you tell the readers what led to Liam Side having business dealings with Bulgaria.

In the book it is made clear that most of his business dealings are on behalf of South Africa where he is from originally. This means that he travels a lot around the world including the Soviet Union, its satellite countries and client states. For this reason he is sucked into a shady arms deal mainly because his daughter’s  life has been threatened if he does not cooperate. However, because he is a cool character, he manages to turn this threat into an invitation for his co-conspirators to            ultimately meet either justice or their ultimate doom –hence the title Judas Goat!

6)  Can you explain the political relationship between South Africa and Bulgaria which led to Thomas Biko being in Sophia.       

Thomas Biko is the new South African Ambassador. A supporter of the ANC, he has been placed there by supporters of Nelson Mandela after the political changes within South Africa. Liam Side tries to help him to purchase necessary plant and equipment, missing from SA due to the past embargo.

7) Why is Antony Kwong based in the UK? And how would you describe his type of business?

 Antony Kwong is a very typical shady businessman who enjoys the thriving commerce of London and the fact that it has so many banks and historical connections with international trade. We must never forget that trading is a major part of the many activities in the City of London, as is commodity trading and maritime insurance. Unfortunately, arms trading also becomes a part of this business – officially and unofficially – as many tyrannical third world dictators try to stay in control of their countries and to exploit their own population.

8) Yuri Vassilev turned out to be very helpful to Lambert, tell us about his career path.       

He would be a career policeman attached to the Ministry of The Interior. He is an exception to the rule and as a civilized man, wishing to distance himself from the  corruption which Communism breeds. Forget Karl Marx and Lenin, Communism is about power and money and he just wants to be a good policeman. He is also useful and appears in my forthcoming novel too.

9) Tell us about your other book, Herodotus.

Herodotus – The Gnome of Sofia is a light hearted look at the bumbling antics of a largely inward looking and mediocre diplomatic corps, whose mantra is ‘If you do nothing, you do nothing wrong.’ Imbued with elitism and totally self serving, in this book we can see their world gradually falling apart when you the reader,            discover that the British Ambassador’s wife is in fact the daughter of Britain’s most notorious spy, Jim Kilbey. Not a particularly nice woman and rather like her natural father in many ways, she turns out to be treacherous, selfish and – showing all the signs of being a sociopath – not far distant from her father Jim Kilbey’s            disreputable character.

10)  What are you working on at the moment, do you have an expected publishing date?

In an Angel over Rimini, once more come across Detective Chief Inspector Michael Lambert, this time working for Europol. This is also a story which has two prongs – one past and one present – when he is sent by Europol to help investigate the abduction of a little English girl from Rimini in Italy. A part of the obnoxious trade in human beings and misery, Lambert discovers that the Italian police have practically given up trying to trace her. A problem of perception, Vice Inspector Bosola of the State Police is convinced that she was murdered by her parents and buried somewhere locally, despite the fact that there is evidence which shows that she has been kidnapped and transported into Europe. Lambert pursues the evidence which leads him to Greece, into Eastern Europe and back to Germany.

The second prong of this mystery is an historical one which involves his late father Billy. He served as an RAF officer in a Pathfinder Squadron, during the allied invasion of Southern Europe and what has become known as ‘The Dirty War.’ It seems that he may have had an affair with a beautiful Italian aristocrat whilst serving in Bari and that Michael Lambert might have a secret Italian half brother . But who is Billy Lambert really and why did he always carry a pistol?  There appears to be a mystery side to Billy Lambert which his son knows nothing about and possibly a murder as well! When DCI Lambert finally reaches through the smoke and mirrors he discovers the true story.

Judas Goat - The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery

 Find a copy here from Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk

Thank you Patrick and Good Luck with the next book.

Judas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery by Patrick Brigham

Judas Goat - The Kennet Narrow Boat MysteryJudas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery by Patrick Brigham

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Judas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery. This is a murder mystery revolving around the British Police Force and Chief Inspector Mike Lambert. The book opens with the discovery of a body on a canal boat moored on the Kennet and Avon Canal just outside Reading in Berkshire.

With suspicious circumstances, the police try to piece together the little evidence they have. They believe the body could be Liam Side and Lambert finds himself on a trail which leads to Sophia in Bulgaria. Liam Side has led a colourful life and has had in fingers in many business pies as Lambert finds out when he slowly peals back the layers on the case.

He discovers that politics and money have driven others from across the world to interact with Liam Side and it seems that more than one person would like to find out more about his business dealings. Lambert’s methods of police work, diligently prove their worth as he finally gets to the bottom of his search.

I had to do my own bit of investigation with the title and I found out that a Judas Goat can be described as a false friend and one who betrays another. By the end of the book there are more than one acts of betrayal, did Liam Side turn out to be a winner? I’m not sure. Did Lambert solve the case? I’ll leave that for you to read.

Find a copy here from Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Patrick will be joining us on the blog tomorrow for a guest author interview, do pop back and find out more about his writing.

Good Deeds Week 23rd February – 1st March

Welcome to my weekly roundup of my year long challenge to do one Good deed a day for a year. This challenge began back in April 2013 and is still going strong. My inspiration came from reading “A Year of Doing Good” by Judith O’Reilly. Here is what I’ve been up to this week.

Good deeds

February 23rd – Finished reading a Flawed Perfection by Cassandra Giovanni today and wrote a review ready to coincide with the book release on March 7th. Happily agreed to read and review another book, Sarah’s Survival Guide by author Cynthia Harrison, I have previously enjoyed reading several of her books.

February 24th – The children are back at school today, so my Good Deed is ticked off with a morning helping out at school. Good Deed received; Mac Black’s book Derek’s In trouble arrived in the post today, can’t wait to get started on it.

February 25th – Have had a great 2 days on the blog giving and receiving Good Deeds. It started on Monday when I posted my review of Red Clay and Roses by S.K.Nicholls http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-4Ge and went on to today with her taking part as our guest author. http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-4Hp I have had so much positive feedback about the review and the interview it has been lovely. On top of that I’ve helped spread the word about the book far and wide and I know it has lead to some readers buying the book. Finished another book today, this one was part of the new HarlequinE box set Shivers books, Legacy of Darkness by Jane Godman. My review and author interview will be posted here on the blog at the end of March.

February 26th – Have just written a book review for Sarah’s Survival Guide, it will appear on the blog later in March, started my next book Saving Our Pennys by Roy Dimond and Jeff Leitch. Just 5 letters to fill in my A to Z challenge, 2 of which I have authors interested in, but just need their confirmation.

February 27th – Having just finished reading Saving Our Pennys by Roy Dimond and Jeff Leitch. I needed to get out in to the sunshine and spend some time reflecting on the lessons I had learnt from the book. Do you ever read something that really makes to stop and think? So off I went for a walk, I like to leave all technology behind when I go out like this and just be at peace. Picked up litter along my route. Good Deeds received: Had virtual coffee with a blogging friend and she helped me out on a few technical issues.

February 28th – Am reading  Mac Black’s book Derek’s In trouble and having a good chuckle along the way. Left a big tip for my hairdresser today who worked wonders with an unruly mop of hair. Accepted 3 more books for review; Judas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery by Patrick Brigham, and two from Roy Dimond; The singing Bowl and The Rubicon effect.

March 1st – Have been feeling guilty, guilt is bad! I have contacted several authors about taking part in my A to Z challenge, lots of them have been wonderful and sent me back information quickly and efficiently. I had an author I had contacted by Twitter back in January who said yes, then when I sent out more messages they just got re-tweeted instead of read and replied. I’ve since let another author have the slot and the first one RT’s many of my daily tweets, but lost his chance. Today I sent him an apology by tweet. What else can I do?

Finished and reviewed Mac Black’s book Derek’s In trouble and the lovely Mac has offered to send me the third book in the series. There were so many great characters continuing the mayhem in Derek’s life, I’m still chuckling now remembering Granny Wisdom in her wheelie bin and 4 drunken men trying to climb over a high wired fence in the middle of the night. The afternoon was lovely and sunny and I spent it in the garden, a small good deed involved weeding the shared garden pathway.

Filled another letter on my A to Z challenge. Just letters Q and X to find books for, am hoping authors of the letters U and Y will send me the details I need this week. It’s been a good week.