The past is an inescapable ose around a young man's neck, in this blackly comic, satirical vel from rewned crime writer Bill James Britain, 1956. A young actress seemingly tries to commit suicide over a tangled love affair, but is taken to hospital and her life saved. The story is just the sort of thing that journalist Ian Charteris likes to cover: a poignant mix of near tragedy, possible thwarted romance, and glamour, needing sensitive but - of course - dramatic treatment. It should be a routine assignment, a welcome assignment. It would be, if it wasn't for the identity of the young woman. She may - just may - be Ian's sister. The unwelcome reminder of the past drags Ian back into memories of places and events he'd rather forget. As far as Ian is concerned, the past is a foreign country. And t just foreign. Fundamentally and cantankerously hostile. Vengeful, war-torn, dangerous. It is impossible to escape the past; the ose is already around Ian's neck, and every step he takes it tightens ...And this is t the only ose.
Critically-acclaimed crime writer Bill James is a former journalist, and wrote for The Sunday Times, the Daily Mirror, the Spectator, the New Review and Punch. Married, with four children, he lives in Wales.