A Death in the Dales, the launch, the cake and the signings

  Kate’s latest adventure is A Death in the Dales. The story unfolds in the village of Langcliffe and the market town of Settle so it was fitting that the official launch – publication day, Thursday, 1 October – took place in the new Settle Library. The library is housed…

The English winter – ending in July, To recommence in August, Lord Byron

We’re more than halfway through August. I’m looking out onto a winter-white sky. Rain washes my skylight windows, now firmly closed against the chill. So why am I glad? If bright sunshine lit my room at the top of the house, I would roast and need to shift myself. Since…

Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, Harrogate 2015

The sun shone on Harrogate as aficionados of crime fiction gathered at the Old Swan Hotel to meet friends old and new, chat about books and celebrate the genre across a weekend devoted to crime writing and reading but with time for a stroll in the Valley Gardens. Every year…

Back in the US of A

The 27th Malice Domestic Convention in Bethesda was brilliant. By now this will have been thoroughly blogged about elsewhere so I’ll just say how enjoyable it was to meet friends old and new. There was time to explore the area around Annapolis. I borrowed a big hat to avoid burning…

My first visit to Paris

An English friend who lives in Brittany met me off the train at the Gare du Nord. Armed with passport photos, we bought passes that enabled us to hop on and off buses for the duration of our stay.  Everyone who has visited Paris has a favourite spot and so…

Thomas Hardy Feeding Birds in Winter

In 1910 Punch magazine declared that feeding birds was a national pastime in the United Kingdom. I know there are pros and cons regarding feeding garden birds but I plead guilty to putting out suet pellets, seeds and peanuts, attracting blackbirds, robins thrushes and starlings as well as a few sparrows…

Dame Agatha’s Choice of Poison

Two very different Agatha Christie mysteries have in common the guilty party’s choice of digitalis as the method of dispatch for the victims. (Was there any poison Agatha Christie did not reach for at one time or another?) Appointment with Death (1938) begins with Hercule Poirot, on holiday in Jerusalem,…

Death of an Avid Reader

The sixth Kate Shackleton novel, Death of an Avid Reader, was published on 2 October. On Saturday, 4 October, we had a celebration in the Leeds Library, where much of the story is set. This is a grand old library, established by private subscription in 1768 and occupying its present…

Walks, Books and September Sunshine

Once in a great while comes a perfect holiday. Earlier this month, I spent one of the sunniest weeks of the year walking the North Yorkshire coastal paths while based at Sneaton Castle, Whitby, combining my stay with visits to bookshops and libraries. At Whitby library I had the pleasure…