I got up early this morning, rather grumpy thanks to excess snoring by bed partners (husband and cat), and then opened my email to find just the loveliest review of “Fatal Forgery”! I had submitted it to the Historical Novel Society back in April, and – to be perfectly honest – quite forgot about it. I do keep a spreadsheet of my submissions, and check it from time to time, but what do you do anyway, if someone has said that they will review your book and then there’s a delay? You can’t nag them, as they’re doing you a favour, and nagging might adversely influence the review, so you just have to wait and hope. And the HNS has certainly come up trumps – you can read their very kind review here. What a coup – the HNS is very well-regarded in the historical novel arena, is unusually welcoming to self-published authors, and has a clean, easy-to-navigate website, so fingers crossed that some of their readers will give “FF” a go on the strength of this review.
I am particularly pleased to see that the reviewer mentions the parallels between the Fauntleroy case and our modern banking scandals – this was very much in my mind as I wrote. (And indeed, a different type of old/modern scandal has similarly influenced “Plank 2”.) But when I was hawking “FF” around the agents and publishers, several of them opined that “no-one is interested in financial scandal these days”. I was stunned – at the time, Fred the Shred and others were all over the media, and, given my line of work, people often ask me things like, “What’s the worst thing you’ve ever seen a bank employee do?” (Karaoke is usually the answer.) So it is very gratifying to know that others can see why Plank’s work, albeit set in the 1820s, is the genesis of investigation that is continued to this day – and that as long as we have money, we will have fraudsters and cheats and money launderers.