It's 1963. A new band called the Rolling Stones is beginning to make its mark and the mini-skirt is coming into fashion. For young Liverpudlian photographer Kate O'Donnell, it's an exciting time to be in the capital - especially as she's on secondment to an up-and-coming fashion photographer's studio. But there's a darker side to 1960s' London, Kate discovers, when the naked, battered body of a teenage prostitute is found amongst the rubbish bins behind a Soho jazz club - and it turns out the victim was a former model at the studio where Kate's working. When a second young model disappears, Kate enlists her friend DS Harry Barnard's help to find out exactly what's going on. Together, they uncover the first of several dark secrets surrounding Andrei Lubin's fashion studio and the notorious Jazz Cellar.
Dressed to kill was published by Crème de la Crime on 31 May 2013
It's an exciting time to be in London, especially for young photographer Kate O'Donnell, who left her native Liverpool six months previously to share a tiny dilapidated flat at the top of a decaying house with two girlfriends in trendy Notting Hill. She was just in time to see the Beatles' meteoric rise to fame, bringing her home town and her accent into sudden favour. But she soon discovers that there's a darker side to Swinging Sixties' London when a prostitute is found murdered off the Portobello Road and a West Indian immigrant is arrested, inflaming the district's simmering racial tension to breaking point. The accused is Nelson Mackintosh, the father of one of Kate's flatmate Tess's pupils. Convinced of Nelson's innocence, Kate determines to track down the real killer. But when her activities attract the attention of notorious West Indian gangster King Devine, not even Kate's old sparring partner DS Harry Barnard can ensure her safety.
Death Trap was published by Crème de la Crime in March 2012
When Laura Ackroyd is approached by a friend of Joyce's, she finds herself in a former mining village still scarred by the strike of 1984. What seem like innocent inquiries lead her into a violent past and an increasingly threatening present. And why, she wonders, is Michael Thackeray so reluctant to get involved. Is their future to be threatened by killers who have neither forgotten nor forgiven '84 ?
When photographer Kate O'Donnell leaves Liverpool she has two things in mind: to make a career in the big city and to track down her older brother who made the same trip earlier and has not been heard of since. But a job proves easier to find than Tom and when she does find a trace of him he is still missing, leaving behind a dead flat-mate and some very suspicious cops. When Harry Barnard of the vice squad catches up with Kate, Tom's future looks grim. Kate's struggle to clear Tom's name in 1960s Soho and back home in the city of the Merseybeat, takes her on a terrifying journey into an underworld where no-one is quite what they seem. Her investigations upset powerful and violent men and she is not even sure the charming sergeant Barnard can be trusted. It is a terrifying leap from taking snaps in the Cavern Club to a gangsters' gala at the Delilah Club where death lurks beneath the tuxedos and she begins to fear for her life. Dead Beat was published by Creme de la Crime on May 26 2011. Death Trap followed in March 2012.
Book Groups and Library talks
Patricia Hall is available to talk about her books. E-mail for further deatils: firstname.lastname@example.org