My writing

My novel is a historical thriller: The Nightingale Cipher.

Nightingale Cipher cover

London, October 1752. The Lord Mayor has been murdered, and as fear grips the city a campaign of terror begins.

Alice Taylor, the renowned assassin, has been ordered to carry out a series of political killings by the capital’s most powerful crime lord, a ruthless and mysterious figure known only as Jupiter.

But from the depths of Newgate Prison she has received a coded warning: Jupiter will betray her.

As intrigue and danger combine, Alice must move between the secret killing chambers by the river and the glittering drawing rooms of Mayfair. But in a city of secrets, where only the brutal survive, can she outwit the most dangerous criminal mind London has ever known?

Here are links to my Londonist articles.

Fireball Court: the Potted History of a Vanished Alley.

If the streets are the veins of London, the courts and alleys have always been its capillaries. For centuries they were the vessels that circulated men, women, money and disease throughout the metropolis, though nowadays only a fraction of the population inhabit them…

Fleet: London’s most Dynamic Ditch

In the centre of the capital, along a valley floor carved out millennia ago, run two conduits. One is a Street, the other a Road and each is called Farringdon. There are few stretches of London earth that have been so ploughed-up, altered, dug through and paved over, and all in the name of velocity. Piled on top of one another along this grand old ditch are an ancient underground river (the Fleet), a less ancient main road (the A201), a recently re-gilded viaduct (Holborn), a recently re-gilded tube line (the Metropolitan, along with its brothers, the Circle and Hammersmith and City), and an imminent addition: Crossrail…

The Adelphi Story

Its borders comprise some of London’s most famous streets, its peripheries are trodden by millions and its name is hardly ever spoken. Between Strand and Embankment, Waterloo Bridge and Charing Cross Station lies Adelphi, an architectural gem sifted from medieval mansions and river mud…

A Final journey, Revisited: Newgate to Tyburn

It is the evening of 23 October 1783, and in a secluded spot on the King’s highway John Austin and an accomplice are mercilessly beating and robbing a stranger. This act of brutality marked the beginning of the end, not only for Austin, but for an ancient ritual that had been enacted since the 16th century. Having been sentenced to death, he became the last man to be taken in procession from Newgate Prison to the gallows at Tyburn…

 

 

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