Today I want to introduce you the new Simon Hall book, The TV Detective, I have to admit I haven’t read it, but I am sure you’ll be intrigued as I am after reading the book blurb! Take a look…
Dan Groves is a television reporter newly assigned to the crime beat and not at all happy about it.
Dan knows next nothing about police work or how to report on it so when he persuades Detective
Chief Inspector Adam Breen to allow him to shadow a high-profile murder inquiry it seems like the perfect solution though it soon becomes clear some members of the police force have no intention of playing nice with the new boy.
With his first case Dan is dropped in at the deep-end. A man is killed in a lay-by with a blast through the heart from a shotgun. The victim is a notorious local businessman, Edward Bray, a man with so many enemies there are almost too many suspects for the police to eliminate.
As tensions rise between Dan and the police he comes close to being thrown off the case until the
detectives realise that far from being a liability, Dan might actually be the key to tempting the
murderer into a trap.
The TV Detective is the first book in a classic crime series from Simon Hall, who until recently was
the BBC Crime Correspondent for the Devon and Cornwall area.
The books sounds interesting, am I right? When you’ll read the extract you’ll want to read right now! 😉
Dan was scribbling a couple of notes when a hammering on the van door stopped him. The beat was authoritative and somehow demanded instant attention.
Outside stood the tall man and squat woman detectives of last night.
‘Good afternoon,’ Dan said.
‘Is it?’ Adam Breen replied. ‘From what I can tell, to go with the demands of my very high profile murder case, I now have a whole new set troubles.’
The detective gave him a cool stare. ‘You.’
‘So I’m coming to join you then?’
‘So it would appear. I’m always asking for more staff, particularly on a case like this. But I have to say you weren’t exactly what I had in mind.’
They held a look. Dan reached out a hand. Breen eyed it warily, then shook with a firm grip.
The woman did the same. Her grip was even stronger. ‘Suzanne Stewart. Sergeant Stewart to you,’ she added.
There was another pause as they all stared at each other. Until Nigel coughed pointedly.
‘We’re on air in fifteen minutes,’ he said.
Dan nodded. ‘Let’s sort out your interview, Mr Breen, then we can talk about the other stuff later.’
They walked over to where Nigel had set up the camera, looking back on the lay by, and Dan explained what would happen in the broadcast. Most interviewees, when faced with live television, showed at least a hint of nerves.
Not Adam Breen. He stood calmly, arms folded, waiting.
He was wearing a fine coat, which looked like cashmere. Today’s suit was a charcoal grey, and once again obviously made to measure. The only itch in the detective’s appearance was the shading of a beard, dark and pronounced, despite it being only half way through the working day.
The title music of Wessex Tonight played in his ear, then Craig, the newsreader came in.
‘An emotional appeal this lunchtime for public help in finding the killer of the notorious businessman Edward Bray,’ he intoned. ‘Wessex Tonight has been speaking to his father, about his shock at the killing. Our Crime Correspondent Dan Groves is at the lay by where Edward Bray was murdered.’
‘It was here, last night, that police found Mr Bray’s body.’ Dan gestured along the tarmac.
‘They believe he was killed just about where I now stand. A murder investigation is underway.’
Dan’s report played. When it ended, he introduced Adam Breen and asked, ‘So, how is the inquiry going?’
‘It’s moving quickly,’ he answered, still without a hint of nerves. ‘We’re working through Mr Bray’s movements yesterday. We’re also talking to anyone who might have met him in the last few days, and going through his business dealings, too. Effectively, we’re building up a picture of his life.’
‘To find a motive for the killing?’
‘That is one of my priorities.’
‘It’s a difficult investigation?’
‘Mr Bray knew many people, and had dealings with even more. His business interests were extensive. I expect this to be a sizeable and lengthy inquiry.’
‘But you’re confident you’ll find the killer?’
‘Yes, I am. I’ll tell you this now. It may take a while, given the size of inquiry, but rest assured. I will find them.’
Dan thanked the detective and handed back to the studio. He pulled out his earpiece and let loose a long breath. The maiden live broadcast of his new life had been successfully completed. The milestones were coming fast.
‘That was reasonably painless,’ Breen said, ‘Maybe even vaguely useful if it brings us some more information. Now I need to get back to Charles Cross to get on with the case.’
‘And I’ve got to get back to the studios to cut a longer report for tonight,’ Dan replied. ‘But tomorrow…’
‘Tomorrow. Yes, tomorrow.’
Dan waited for more, but nothing came. Breen just stared at him with a detective’s look of pure scrutiny.
‘So, what about me tomorrow?’ Dan asked eventually.
‘And you really want to do this?’
Adam Breen was a hard man to read. It was impossible to tell if he was irritated, or amused. Or perhaps both.
‘I think it could be good for the police,’ Dan said.
‘You’re doing this as a favour to us, are you? How kind.’
‘Maybe it could work for both of us.’
‘Maybe,’ the detective mused. ‘And maybe not.’
Dan was aware that Nigel and Suzanne Stewart were silently watching the strange exchange.
‘I’d like to give it a try, anyway,’ he said.
‘That sounds like what the Deputy Chief Constable told me. Right, then report to Charles
Cross for nine o’clock prompt, when your bizarre induction as a trainee detective will begin.’ Breen paused again, then added, ‘I can hardly wait.’