Publisher: Bloodhound Books
Genre: Crime Fiction
MURDER. BETRAYAL. REVENGE.
It’s not the homecoming Detective Inspector Tudor Manx was expecting, but solving the case is just the start of his problems.
Recently transferred from the London Met to the North Wales Constabulary, Detective Inspector Tudor Manx has come to Island of Anglesey hoping for a quiet life.
But his hopes are dashed when a brutally mutilated body is found crucified to the bow of a fishing boat sending shockwaves through the peaceful community.
Manx’s faces pressure to solve the case quickly equipped with an inexperienced team.
Is the body a message or a premonition of more murders to come?
Adding to his mounting problems, Manx’s troubled past returns to haunt him. Manx left the island after the disappearance of his younger sister, Miriam; a cold case that still remains unsolved.
Can Manx solve the case before the body count rises?
How will he cope when he is forced to choose between his family and his duty as a police officer?
This is the first book in the thrilling new DI Tudor Manx series.
I’m the final stop on the blog tour for Anglesey Blue and I have an extract to share with you.
“You’re telling me. Nearly had a bloody riot on my hands. Should have had you lot on speed dial.” She retrieved a scrap of paper from under the bar, and read it aloud. “Try this one. How many number one singles did the Swedish Super Group, Abba, have in their eighteen-year career?” “UK, or worldwide?” Gwen smiled, and laid down the paper. “See, that’s why you’re a copper, asking the right questions. Didn’t bloody say, did it? So, Dewi Diesel and Mick the Chimney go at it, hammer and tongs. Had to give them both a pint on the house to calm them down. Honestly, men! They’re no better than kids sometimes.” “Well, that’s the problem with pop quiz nights, isn’t it?” Manx paused before continuing. “Winner takes it all.” Gwen thought for a moment. “Very bloody funny!” she said, slapping her hands on the bar like a punctuation mark. “Right, can’t be standing here all night gabbing with you. Aiding and abetting they call it, yeah?” “More like co-operating with police enquiries,” Manx said, waving his nearly finished pint in her direction. “Well, it’s not like much happens round here that needs enquiring about, is there? Proper You should take me up on that haircut, before I put up my prices. Once word gets out,you could be waiting for days.”
“I’m renting the old salon next to the wool shop. Nothing fancy, mind. A couple of stations,and one of those big hair-dryers, but you’ve got to start somewhere, right?” Gwen skimmed afew, frothy centimetres off the top of the beer, and slid it over the bar.
Manx reached for the pint, and caught a glimpse of his long, thin face in the mirror behind the bar. It made him wonder for a moment as to the identity of the middle-aged man staring back at him from behind the bottles and optics. The harshness of the florescent light was hardly flattering, not that it mattered—Manx’s face wore his years too comfortably, he thought. He had longed for some rebellion, some rage against the onset of age, but his face appeared to have surrendered without much of a fight. The dark, puffy rings that puckered beneath his eyes,the three-day old stubble, and the slightly too long sideburns peppered with grey did little to distract from the overall impression of a forty-nine-year-old policeman, with little time for personal vanity, but, as of yet, had not given up completely.
“Might take you up on that offer, after all.” Gwen nodded. “I can fit you in Tuesday afternoon.” “Outstanding. Tuesday, it is,” Manx said, turning his gaze from the mirror’s exacting judgment. “And don’t be a stranger. We could do with some new faces in here, even if it’s just your ugly mug.” There was little chance of being a stranger here, Manx thought. He’d been back on the island precisely fourteen days, and each one of them had ended in the exact same location; the lounge bar at the Pilot Arms, Moelfre. Not much has changed since he was last here, either. The neat regiment of cracked Toby jugs still held court over the fireplace, casting their beady enamel eyes over the clientele. The wide bay windows were still festooned with a rag-tag weave of old fishing nets. In the main bar, a scrap of young men clacked balls around the pool table, and in the snug, a coven of young girls huddled around a table, all hushed secrets and loud makeup. Along the bar, the older men in flat caps and corduroy trousers occupied the barstools that had, by now, shifted and familiarised themselves to fit each of their buttocks with comfortable precision. The pub must have seen better days, Manx thought, but he struggled to remember when. Maybe the Pilot Arms was one of those establishments whose better days were yet to come. Was he really back where it all started? It wasn’t hard for Manx to recall his teenage self, flirting with the barmaid, and pestering the members of the Young Farmer’s Club to buy him drinks, before being thrown out on his ear at closing time. You can take the boy out of Anglesey, but you can’t drink the Anglesey out of the boy, he thought to himself, and savoured another mouthful of beer, as if to prove his own point. Gwen winked at him from the other side of the bar.
It was a casual sort of wink; the sort you give your friend when you’re in cahoots about something. Manx guessed she was in her early thirties, give or take a couple of years, and possessed the pale, almost pearlescent Welsh complexion, with the requisite blush of pink around the cheekbones. Her hair was coal-black, and she wore it up in a tousled bun which left two strands to fall in a nonchalant fashion across her cheekbones. It was Gwen’s eyes, however, which captured most peoples’ attention. They would inevitably linger a second too long on her eyes, as if they couldn’t imagine a colour that striking existing naturally—a deep green, tempered by flecks of almond around the pupils. Someone had mentioned to Manx she had a young boy, six or so, but the father had left for Saudi Arabia a few years back. Manx couldn’t blame the man for escaping the island; he’d done the same himself, but leaving behind a kid and a woman like Gwen Schofield seemed like a rash decision he’d come to regret. Manx was about to sink the remaining drops of his sequel and order the full trilogy, when his mobile vibrated anxiously across the bar. He checked the number: work. He contemplated not answering, but they’d eventually track him down, and send over a junior to knock on the door of his neighbour and landlady, Megan Evans, who appeared to know the whereabouts of everyone in the village at any given time. “Manx,” he said, with an abruptness he hoped would ensure whoever was interrupting his off-duty Saturday night, would keep it short. PC Kevin Priddle’s voice was loud and over-excited. The hue and cry of a rainstorm rumbled and cracked in the background as he spoke. Manx looked out. In the past hour, the weather had turned from a chilly October evening into an ugly, full-throated thunderstorm. Along the faint horizon of the Irish Sea, several container ships were already anchored, their pilot lights twitching nervously through the fog. They’d be there for the night; no port this side of Liverpool was going to let them dock until the storm had passed. Manx moved closer to the door. “Where did you say you were?” He sensed an edge of urgency and maybe even a twinge of excitement in the Constable’s reply. “Jesus! And you can’t locate another senior officer? No, it’s fine. I’ll drive myself.” Manx hung up, and returned to the lounge. He placed a twenty on the bar, and instructed Gwen to keep the change. “Leaving me already?” she said. “Can’t keep those super models waiting. They’re very temperamental; goes with the job,” Manx said. “Oh, and by the way, nine number one’s in the U.K., and no one’s completely sure about the worldwide. In case it comes up again.” Gwen smiled. “Fount of knowledge, you are,” she said. “And don’t forget, Tuesday at eleven. Make a new man of you.” * * * The rain swept sideways into Manx’s face, as he stepped from the shelter of the pub. He walked briskly past the sea-front car park, all but abandoned for the winter, and towards the narrow slip of road leading to the Bryn Mawr housing estate. Turning up his jacket collar, he felt a cold trickle of rain trace down his spine. He shuddered. Welcome to fucking Wales, he thought, and ducked his head against the elements he felt were just beginning to conspire against him.
About the Author:
Dylan is a native, Anglesey-born Welshman who now lives in Oakland, California with his wife Laura and daughter, Isabella. He has worked as a media executive and copywriter at various TV networks and advertising agencies both in London and San Francisco. Currently, he is owner and Creative Director of Jones Digital Media, a video content agency.
Dylan was born on Anglesey and moved away when he was seven years old to the Northeast of England. His family then moved to the Wirral for several years before settling back on Anglesey when he was fourteen. Dylan studied Communication Arts and Media at the University of Leeds, then moved to Cardiff, working for S4C. In 1993 he relocated to London as a Creative Director with Channel 4 TV. Today, he lives in Oakland, California. His parents, sister and most of his immediate family still live on the island.
Anglesey Blue is the first in a series of crime novels featuring the sardonic, sharp-witted but troubled detective, Detective Inspector Tudor Manx. Dylan’s life, both on and off the island, inspired him to develop the series.
“I love to use my imagination to create believable characters in a setting I know well,” Dylan says. “I want DI Tudor Manx and all the supporting characters to live in readers’ minds for many years. I’m looking forward to writing more of Tudor’s journey as he confronts the demons of his past to find the peace and redemption he’s searching for.”