Poppy Denby’s next adventure, The Crystal Crypt, will be released in November. Today, in collaboration with Love Reading, we reveal its cover! And here it is…
Reporter sleuth Poppy Denby is asked to investigate the mysterious death of an up-and-coming female scientist in an Oxford laboratory known as the Crystal Crypt. The official verdict is that Dr June Leighton died in a tragic accident, but Dr Leighton’s lab assistant believes it was murder. However, when Poppy discovers that the colleague has spent time in a mental institution and has an unresolved murder in her own past, Poppy wonders if she is being misled. But then, another female academic is attacked, and Poppy herself becomes a target. This is the sixth book in the Poppy Denby Investigates series.
I’m going to be joining a stellar line-up of crime writers, publishers and agents in the Pro-Writing Aid Crime Writer’s Week on 19 – 23 April. Alongside the likes of Peter James, Leigh Russell, Karin Slaughter and Ian Rankin, I’ll be sharing my experience of crime writing in a session on research for historical mysteries. I will be looking at how to create an authentic historical world. Do join me at 3pm (UK time) on Wednesday 21st April for a totally FREE session. And of course, dip in and out of any and all of the other talks and workshops taking place that week. Visit www.prowritingaid.com/crimeweek to sign up. Full details below.
I’m not sure how I missed this when it came out two years ago, but the lovely Miss Jane featured the first two books in the series in her Mystery Monday video review. Lovely to hear that Poppy has another fan.
Poppy Denby does get around. This week she has made her way onto the Ezvid Wiki website and is in a video featuring six mystery and thriller authors. She very kindly allowed me to come along for the trip too. Check us out here on the Ezvid Wike website.
My lovely (sadly now former )editor, Jessica Gladwell, and I are in this month’s Writing Magazine talking to Dolores Gordon-Smith about my journey to publication and the Poppy Denby novels. Check it out if you get the chance.
Today is a very exciting day for me, it’s the launch of the Poppy Denby audio books! Hurrah! If you are looking for something to wile away a long journey on holiday or lounging by a pool, then why not download one now? (They are also available in audio and MP3 cds). Narrated by the fabulous Helen Keeley and published by Lamplight Audiobooks,
I had a fantastic evening at last night’s historic crime panel, the penultimate event of the flapulous Newcastle Noir 2019. Here I am in conversation with my fellow partners in crime. From left to right, Ann Landmann (moderator), Lesley Thomson, Nicola Ford, yours truly and Oscar de Muriel.
“What have we got for below the fold?” Asked Rollo.
A voice piped up: “Wimbledon. That Frenchy won again. The one with the short skirt. And Daniel’s got a luv-er-ly pic.”
On cue Daniel walked to the front of the room and presented a picture of Suzanne Lenglen to Rollo who in turn showed it to the room. It was met by wolf whistles. No one bothered apologizing to Poppy.
From The Jazz Files.
Our heroine’s first day at work on The Daily Globe was on 4 July 1920, the day after the Wimbledon Finals. The men’s singles were won by Bill Tilden who defeated Australian Gerald Patterson (2–6, 6–3, 6–2, 6–4), and was the first American to ever win the title. Tilden also became the first player to reach 10 finals at a single Grand Slam event. His record stood until 2015, when Roger Federer reached his tenth Wimbledon final. Tilden’s personal life, however, was mired in tragedy and his closet homosexuality (illegal at the time) led to scandal and turmoil, including rumoured liaisons with ball boys.
The women’s singles were won, again, by ‘the Frenchy in the short skirt’ Suzanne Lenglen, considered by many the greatest French sports woman of all time. Lenglen won every year between 1919 and 1925, apart from 1924 when she had to withdraw in the quarter finals with whooping cough. She was a fashion icon and paved the way for women to wear shorter, looser fitting clothing on court, causing a scandal at the time. She was also renowned for smoking cheroots and drinking brandy between sets. Despite this dubious diet, she won an incredible 241 titles, with a 98% winning record over her entire career. She partied as hard as she played, and, in The Jazz Files, she makes a cameo appearance at Oscars Jazz Club the same evening Charlie Chaplin arrives. She died of leukemia on 4 July 1938, after going blind. She was only 39.
There has been a great deal of light-hearted debate on my Fiona Veitch Smith – author FB page. In book 3, Poppy and Delilah are on a cruise, travelling to New York, on the RMS Olympic. They are about to try out the on-board swimming pool and need to choose outfits. As fans of the series know, I like to dress my characters (whenever possible) in original 1920s outfits that I source from fashion museums, books and archives. So I gave people the choice between eight outfits, as seen in this original photograph, and asked them to choose an outfit for both the girls. See which ones you would put them in then scroll down to see the results! If you agree or disagree I would love to hear from you in the comments below
And now for the results: These are the top three popular choices for each of our leading ladies in descending order:
Poppy: 6, 1, 2
Delilah: 7, 2, 6
So that’s decided! Poppy will be in horizontal stripes and Delilah the floral pattern. For colours I’m going with dark green and gold for Delilah (gold flowers) and nautical blue and white stripes for Poppy. I’ll make Poppy’s slightly longer though.
Now you’ll have to wait until 2017 to see your choice in print!!!!!
Everyone had a flapulous time at the launch party at Waterstones, Newcastle on the 25 September. Here is a taste of it. You might want to view the pics to the accompaniment of the Tiger Rag by the Original Dixieland Jazzband. At the launch it was played by Yussef Nimer and Jimmy Madrell from Middlesbrough, not Dixie
Poppy Denby investigates