Friday, 3 May 2013


My latest crime novel, Legally Bound, set in Regent's Park and the City of London is now available online at Amazon.

I conceived this story several years ago as a TV drama script and had encouraging noises made about it by the BBC, but in the end - after two  years on option, they didn't produce it. So last year, I started writing it up as a crime novel. The key location is Regent's Park, the best park in London as far as I'm concerned. It was a cherished space for me to walk through on my way to work from Primrose Hill to Great Portland Street. At week ends, I hired a deck chair for the day and sunbathed, reading books and drinking cups of tea from the flask I brought with me. The gardens were my Riviera, full of characters - some of who pop up in the background in the novel. A callous crime takes place in the park, although I always thought of it - and still do -  as a sanctuary, a healing place.

Had a  chest x-ray on the day of the book launch. My new GP - one of the old, patient-friendly school,  called me this afternoon with the result - all clear. This is a great relief because the year is 2013 after all, and four years after my last battle (brain tumour) which was four years to the day after my first diagnosis and chemo treatment in 2005. So the number four  has been unlucky for me - although it's the date of my birthday - and thirteen, as everyone knows, is unlucky for some. I have had a persistent cough since January and am now in the middle of my second course of antibiotics. Felt less anxious about the x-ray when I met up with Chris, after seeing the GP. Chris was my neighbour on the surgical ward where we both had a mastectomy in September 2005.  She had pre-cancerous spread in one breast, which was the reason she had to lose it, like me, though I had the full-blown advanced variety in mine. Chris has struggled with lung infections ever since, been hospitalised for breathing difficulties, had a collapsed lung, and now uses an inhaler and a nebuliser. But - and this is the point, she remains cancer- free after eight years, as I do. I've asked her to call me up again when she comes to Truro because she's a trouper.  I hadn't seen her for seven years but we send each other Christmas cards. She's an ambassador for survivors because, in spite of poor heath affecting both her and her partner, she always looks on the bright side.

Spring looks as though it might have arrived now,  and soon it will be June, when my daughter leaves school. I promised her eight years ago, when all this started, that I would be there for her Speech Day in 2013. It looks as though I can keep my promise...

photo: Cara Loukes