Author’s talk will shed light on the challenge of writing latest crime novel

PUBLISHED: 09:02 31 August 2018 | UPDATED: 09:02 31 August 2018




A qualified accountant and publisher who writes in his spare time will be appearing at Hart’s Books in Saffron Walden next week to discuss his new crime novel set in rural Essex.

The new book by James Henry, his second DI Inspector Nick Lowry book, dubbed Yellowhammer, is set in 1983.

“The inspiration for this book was the landscape, and the bird of the title, which, for me, is synonymous with that part of the county,” James said. “The challenge was to weave both into a crime novel to firmly place the story in rural Essex.

“This is my sixth novel and was probably the hardest to complete and took several drafts; it’s difficult to explain why without spoilers, other than I kept asking myself is this plausible, could this happen - and the answer was eventually ‘yes’ in the right setting and circumstances.”

James, who grew up in Billericay and now lives in Colchester, spent many years working in finance before moving into the editorial world and getting the chance to write the prequels to RD Wingfield’s Detective Inspector Jack Frost books.

He said: “I write in my spare time. Originally I was an accountant; I qualified whilst working at a large publishing company and for many years worked in finance before moving into editorial.

“I was very lucky and got the chance to write prequels to RD Wingfields excellent Jack Frost books. I then wanted to write about an area I knew, and started on Blackwater. And there found an emphasis on location, which was probably the result of being confined to the fictitious Denton (the setting for the Wingfield books). I am currently working on a third Lowry novel called Whitethroat.”

The book has received positive reviews in the Financial Times and Guardian. In Saturday’s Guardian, the review read: “With well-rounded characters, a terrific sense of time and place and masterful plotting, this solid police procedural is a 24-carat holiday read”.

The talk is on Wednesday at 6.30pm in Hart’s Books, Saffron Walden. Tickets are £5 and are available over the phone on 01799 524 552 or in-store.

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