Welcome to my new website, showcasing my crime fiction series following the investigations by Symington, Earl Byrd. The prime minister’s personal detective, Byrd is used to dealing with political scandals that need discrete inquiries and diplomatic solutions. Then a House of Commons Cufflink is linked to the suicide of a girl from the East End of London and Byrd’s world is never the same again…


2022 – And so it begins

With the final installment in the Lucy and Mark’s trilogy winging its way to the proofreader, it’s time to focus on The Case of the Terrified Tailor, which has been rather neglected of late. I blame Year 11. They’re not to blame. It’s just, I blame them. If you want to learn more about Mark and Lucy head over to https://sarahesmith.info/. They’re books designed for reluctant readers. Less dark than Byrd. Less complex (sort of). No release date yet. They’re simply too good to rush. And trust me, when they were out last, there were ‘nibbles’.

End of Year Update, 2021:

It’s been a very strange kind of year. Another Lockdown and a lot of family stuff put paid to the writing. I have been re-editing Mark and Lucy’s adventures and with the help of my amazing team hope to bring them back to the world in 2022.

Work also dried up on The Case of the Terrified Tailor. My brain has not been feeling particularly creative. Probably something to do with the Year 11 mocks and the drivel contained therein. You, like me, will be delighted to know that JB Priestley wrote ‘A Christmas Carol’. That Mr Hyde killed Doctor Jekyl because he hated him. And that the writer did this to make Scrooge more Dickens. Still the fact that I am writing this, gives me hope that 2022 will turn the page on my writer’s apathy.

Finally take a look at the sidebar. There you will see that A Disappointment of Owls is on promotion in the UK from the 28th – 31st of December. Grab a copy and discover just why the shady solicitor had to die….

1st May 2021

The rewrite is going great guns. Faster paced and tighter, and becoming it’s a lot more gruesome as Professor Gallsworthy meets his end right in front of Byrd’s eyes. Or does he? Meanwhile Emily and her uncle are after the murderer of one of their couriers. Except no one heard the shot that killed him. Let’s see whether the three day weekend sees the back of this version, shall we?

28th March 2021.

Having pondered Amanda’s advice, I’ve been researching. And as a consequence have 594 new words. Rough but I now know how they do it and why.
If Time Team could dig up marvels in three days, how much can I do in an Easter Holiday?

A Terrifying of Tailorbirds went to my lovely editor Amanda on Monday. There’s been a lot of things getting in the way of this one. The relaunches and launch to name but two, so there’s something still not quite right with the middle and (as Blackadder would say) the least said about the end the better.

But the plan at the moment is to have Tailorbirds out end of the year, along with a Christmas Ghost Story. With the year I’m having, who knows. But hopefully Amanda will weave her magic and I’ll be re-enthused with this writing malarkey.


Out Now

Amazon.uk and Amazon.com

When a House of Commons cufflink, stuffed in the mouth of Millie Jones, turns suicide to murder, Symington, Earl Byrd, the prime minister’s personal detective, soon finds his killer. A ruthless East End pawnbroker not known for carelessness.
Forced to re-evaluate his position following a trip to the Houses of Parliament, Symington is left with more questions than answers.
Like, who wants to destroy the pawnbroker and why? Is the cufflink a clue or a red herring? And more importantly why did Millie Jones have to die?

Out Now

Amazon.uk and Amazon.com

When Symington, Earl Byrd is called into investigate the murder of Robert Langley, he’s confused. Why shoot a man when you’ve already poisoned him?
Much to the prime minister’s disgust, a trip to Wales complicates matters further. But the prime minister is the least of Byrd’s worries. Rumour has it, Jack the Ripper’s back – tying up loose ends.
But when did Jack start using poison?

Out Now

Amazon.uk and Amazon.com

When the mutilated body of Albert Shawcross is found in the East End, the police head straight to Fournier Street to the last person who saw him alive – Symington, Earl Byrd
Horrified at the presumption of guilt, Symington vows to track down the real killer. With the help of the pawnbroker’s niece, Emily, he’s drawn into an increasing dangerous world, where not everyone wants him to succeed.
With enemies using violent tactics to persuade him to drop the case, the earl must make a difficult decision. Does the shady solicitor deserve justice, or did he deserve to die?

This page is static. On it I’ll update events and new releases. For the blog – go to Musings

For more about Byrd, go to The Casebook of Symington, Earl Byrd and let him introduce himself