Britain in the 1930s; a novel inspired by real events; eloping; WW2.
Emily falls passionately in love with working class Walter, despite fierce opposition from her class conscious father. She sees marriage as a partnership of equals and resolves to elope to escape such a male dominated society.
Emily’s actions will see her struggle to survive the subsequent devastation brought about by the war, as she and her four year old son are thrown into the midst of danger and death. The family experience rationing and the terror of bombing. Their air raid shelter is destroyed by a direct hit.
When Walter volunteers for the army, Emily and her son are evacuated to a rat infested cottage in a farming community near Hebden Bridge. The war changes Walter into an efficient army officer who demands to be obeyed. Emily worries that she might have a rival for his affections. How can she restore their loving relationship?
The Girl Who Disappeared is a moving love story about one woman’s enduring resilience, a story full of quiet humour and surprising twists and turns.
‘Wow! What a good book’ (Goodreads reviewer)
‘James brought their lives to life’ (Librarything reviewer)
Where are you from? Tell us a little about yourself!
My parents came from Hebden Bridge in the West Riding of Yorkshire but I was born in Petts Wood, south London and educated at Dulwich College and University College London. I qualified as a solicitor and specialized in banking law and insolvency, ultimately becoming Founding President of the Insolvency Lawyers Association and Judicial Chair of the Insolvency Practitioners Tribunal.
I am the original author of Lingard’s Bank Security Documents (now in its 7th edition), Britain at War 1939 to 1945 and now The Girl Who Disappeared and recently The Caucasus Cauldron – the audiobook of which will be released shortly.
Tell us about your book? How did it get started?
Reviewers of Britain at War expressed regret that it does not cover either the prewar or postwar periods. The Girl Who Disappeared remedies this being closely based on my mother’s life and my early life – she eloped.
What inspires and what got you started in writing?
My father boosted his career by publishing three articles and I wrote my first articles whilst still at university. My professional career kept me too busy to write until LexisNexis invited me to write a book on Bank Security Documents – an opportunity too good to miss.
Where do you write? Is there something you need in order to write (music, drinks?)
Soothing music helps.
How do you get your ideas for writing?
The Caucasus Cauldron derived from news of troubles in the region and my desire to write something really exciting like the books I read.
What do you like to read?
James Bond; John Le Carre; John Buchan.
What would your advice to be for authors or aspiring in regards to writing?
Begin by writing the chapter headings – one per page – then note on each page what its chapter will cover. Very little of your first attempt will survive but it is a good way of avoiding writers’ block.
MI6 spies; Russian FSB; Chechen terrorists; Abkhaz Separatists; the 1992 Georgian war.
This breath-taking and brutal novel is a gripping tale set in the magnificent Caucasus Mountains during Georgia’s ill-fated invasion of Abkhazia in 1992. The Caucasus Cauldron gives a vivid focus to a historical moment left out of the history books, a world ripping itself apart and ravaged by never ending hatred and blood feuds.
Can our hero, Mac, trust the attractive Russian FSB officer, Kris, who befriends him and how will she react to Doctor Anna, a Separatist rabble rouser who holds the key to his secret mission? And what about the mysterious Sergei, a former British agent, who seems to have disappeared?
How will Mac cope with the Chechen terrorist who has vowed to kill him? ‘You are a dead man, English. We know who you are; you are spying on our people. Now you die.’
The result is an intense action packed thriller full of danger, death and fear but a story full of quiet humour and surprising twists and turns.