Murder by Degrees by Victor E. Knight

Murder by Degrees by Victor E. Knight


Price: Paperback £8.95, Kindle £3.99

ISBN: 978-1-9165001-9-8

A severed pig’s head bought from an abattoir is the prelude to a series of murders.

First comes the bludgeoning of a professor of English literature … It seems at first to be an isolated crime. Then comes another – and another – and more.

The dons are in an unseemly panic.

The media can hardly conceal their delight.

Detective-Inspector Hooligan is baffled. Obviously, the killer ‘has it in’ for professors of English literature and is intelligent, resourceful, elusive. Furthermore, he displays intimate knowledge of the university world. But, until he is caught, his motive remains a mystery. Without knowing a motive, where do you start to look?

Dogged investigations and intuition are the quirky detective’s only weapons. And will the killer overlook some essential detail? Killers usually do …

A murder mystery indeed – but also a comedy. Hooligan’s quest brings him into contact with many absurd dons – vain, bumbling, unethical, idle … Murder by Degrees might have been subtitled ‘Bloodshed With a Laugh’.

Author Victor Knight was born in 1939 in Barking, which was then in Essex and is now in East London. This makes him either an Essex Boy or an Eastender and an imposter in either category. Barking Public Library provided at least as much of his early education as did Westbury Primary School.

His first serious ambition was to be a musician; and he was for a time, a Junior Exhibitioner at the Royal Academy of Music. But instead he found himself at Magdalene College, Cambridge, and obtained a degree in German and Russian. He then held various posts in university libraries – Leeds, Malta, Edinburgh where he obtained a PhD in German, and Liverpool (as Chief Librarian). He derived inside knowledge of the ways of academe at that time. He also visited Indonesia as adviser to the National Library in Jakarta. So much for Dr Jekyll. As Mr Hyde he played the trombone in amateur orchestras and accompanied and conducted amateur operatic societies. Or are Jekyll and Hyde the other way round?

Calendar Boy by John Stirling

Calendar Boy by John Stirling


Price: Paperback £9.95

ISBN- 978-1-9163097-7-7

John Stirling has spent that life in the entertainment industry as an actor, director and producer, right back to his childhood days, as a pupil at the Italia Conti Stage School, playing Noddy on stage. John appeared in numerous productions on television, stage and screen, winning awards along the way. He has been involved in many iconic productions, including Coronation Street, The Comedians and the Royal Variety Show.


A chance encounter with a donkey on its last legs lead to John becoming the champion for the Michael Elliot Trust and its Actors’ Donkey Sanctuary which he and his wife ran for over thirty years. This work was completed with the help of many of the nation’s top entertainers, including June Brown MBE, Marti Caine, Patricia Hayes and Brian Blessed. The sanctuary made a significant contribution in the area of donkey rescue and provided many opportunities for disabled children.


As a successful speaker at numerous Women’s Institutes, John has brought together many aspects of his long and successful career. In the book, John describes those experiences and the wide range of audience reactions he received.


John tells of the trials and tribulations of auditioning, the difficulties in locating the WI locations and how he dealt with a fascinating mix of characters within the WI membership. The book provides a captivating read as John and his wife Annie immerse themselves into the world of the UK Women’s Institute.


John’s latest work includes Born in a Hamper, a drama for theatre and television (touring). John Stirling is also a popular and sought-after after-dinner speaker with a number of prominent organisations.

Bad Verse, Worse Verse by Stan Zaman

Bad Verse, Worse Verse by Stan Zaman


Price: Paperback £ 8.95

ISBN: 978-1-9163097-5-3

Bad Verse – Worse Verse is a collection of hilarious off-beat poems about aspects of life, love and (especially) death.

The world created by Stan Zaman is populated by frightening leprechauns, footballing flies, absent-minded mice and a piratical pig, to name but a few.

All the characters are brought to life (in some cases all too briefly) by Jen the Pen’s carefully crafted, colourful illustrations. Questions that only the reader will be able to answer include: ‘Did Stan’s father really jump out of a window?’ ‘Is old Uncle Stanley a self-portrait?’ ‘Why doesn’t Baby like baked beans?’

The author is anxious to stress that no animals (or nuns) were hurt during the writing of these poems – although Billy Bunny, Mervyn the mole and several squashed nuns might disagree.

Listening to this Life by Frank Lowe

Listening to this Life by Frank Lowe


Price: Paperback £8.95

ISBN: 978-1-9161066-2-8

I didn’t want to stop, however, someone stood on the brakes, I skidded and lost control for a while, couldn’t see which direction I was heading. Then, when I thought I had corrected matters, I veered off course without anyone to check my compass or direction, I was in no-man’s-land.

That’s roughly where I stayed for several years. I was now my own navigator, engineer and captain of this rather confused ship of mine. The passengers – my family – who had to endure this journey kept telling me to find a port, stop, re-group, take a break and I would then see things differently.

Well, this captain thought he could do his own thing, without any help or charts of where he was heading. In fact, he had no idea where he was taking himself and these totally innocent and loyal passengers.

It has been a while, however. I am now moored in a better place and can at least gather some thoughts together of what comes next. Certainly not the world I knew and was forced to leave behind, that really was a danger zone riddled with human land ‘minds’.

The problem is this, the new world I experience daily, in person on the street, hear on the radio – God save me from Nicky Campbell, or the mindless trash on terrestrial TV that is not for me either. If there is a parallel universe, then I might sign up for the journey right now.

You don’t get a handbook when you become a parent nor a guidebook on reaching a certain age, so what do you do?  If one is normal and I believe I can reasonably fit that description, then all sorts of pursuits, hobbies and holidays are available to while away whatever time you have. That certainly didn’t appeal, life had changed, and I was trying to come to terms with my new situation.

The conventions that I was having in my head were world class and destructive, every one of the demands was able to have a piece of me as and when they wanted, day or night. In fact, the night-time visitors were easier to deal with. When the wolves began to circle, at least I could curse them out loud in the privacy of my home. Not so with the tormentors who came in the daytime. It was bad form to shout out loud at an imaginary foe in a crowded coffee shop, although that was exactly what I wanted to do and relieve the pressure.

So, for me to achieve some clarity of thought I had to, leap off the carrousel, step outside my comfort zone, be kinder to myself and those around me, even forget myself for a while. Someone else told me to break the circle. All great advice but not easy when you are the one taking it. You may even recognise that feeling.

Therefore, to get back on course, I commit to paper that which seems to offer a distraction and which I find strangely therapeutic, my observations on human nature. How we all seem to bugger along as though life will go on as usual and assume nasty things happen to other people.  In writing these short episodes I have, I admit, had to engage in a certain amount of voyeurism both at home and abroad. So, my apologies to all those folks who might have thought I was eves-dropping on their conversations. I couldn’t help it; you were broadcasting to the nation!

Finally, with a little help from my GP, my Welsh friend Di Azipam and his mate Flo Oxytine, I may be able to navigate myself through these unchartered waters of anxiety however, its early days.


I hope you enjoy the rest.

Born in Manchester in 1950, author Frank Lowe, the son of a master carpenter, freely admits his father’s skills skipped a generation, now resting with his son Ben.

Starting work in Manchester at the age of sixteen, he has spent all his working life in financial services both in the UK and abroad, in Jamaica, the US and a stint in Nigeria, a dangerous place after the Nigerian-Biafran civil war and a place he was pleased to leave far behind, the exit engineered through the ingenuity of his wife Moi.

His love of literature has resulted in finally putting pen to paper with the advent of this new book. Interests consist of writing, obviously, an addiction to coffee, travel with a love of Italy and a Manchester football team the identity of which will become clear during the reading of this book. He presently lives with his wife Moi in England.

Read all about it by Nick Weatherhogg

Read all about it by Nick Weatherhogg


Price: Paperback £5.99

ISBN: 978-1-9999129-7-0

Years ago, one of the greatest rock bands of all time did a gig in North Somerset and naturally, the newspaper covered the event: ‘Thousands go to see rock legends in Somerset’ / ‘Thousands see Queen in Bath’. Which article would you read?

The art of the headline writer is to inform, to amuse … but mainly to attract attention. Here are some of the finest headlines ever written – some clever, many amusing, a few hilarious, a handful confused, some downright bizarre … but all genuine.

Author Nick Weatherhogg was born in Wales and raised in Essex.

Nick went to Leeds University, initially to read medicine. Having left that course after contracting meningitis, he stayed in Yorkshire to return to his strength with a degree in Mathematics. On completion he took a part-time doctorate from America in theistic psychotherapy, while starting to teach in South London.

After marrying and having two sons the family moved to the West Country, where the final two sons were born. In Somerset, Nick led a Mathematics and a Psychology department in a secondary school for sixteen years.

After a few temporary, teaching appointments he decided to leave the teaching profession and started working nights in a residential care home near to the family home.

The Poetic Murderer by Frank Burmeister

The Poetic Murderer by Frank Burmeister


Price: Paperback £7.99

ISBN: 978-1-9999129-3-2

‘Fries, feet, and farts — I smell the scent of men.’

From the moment Detective 00 Hansen controls the fate of the streets in Copenhagen, he becomes intimately acquainted with the self-paced and hygge lifestyle.

In The Poetic Murderer, Hansen and Don Cindy’s first mystery, the duo are informed by Denmark’s Queen Marmalade II and Prince Sandwich about an unimaginable murder at the supermarket. The body is marked by violence and the murder weapon an unsanitary rainbow trout.

The police are baffled by the circumstances of the crime. But when Detective 00 Hansen applies his incomplete consciousness of the present moment to the problem, he uncovers a tragic tale of unrequited love and deadly trout . . .

Author Christoph Burmeister was born on the 16 April 1987 in Bad Oldesloe on the river Trave. That’s why he originally wanted to become a clown. Even, as a little boy, he dressed up as Freddie Mercury and played mischievous pranks on his neighbours.

On school days he dreamed wholeheartedly. University was no hindrance to him; it was his hobby. He would carefully fashion his appearance as an eager student.

After graduation, the money bell rang, and he started working for a shipping company as a treasury manager. One day he took a glimpse into the mirror and did not recognise himself, so he left home and moved to Copenhagen.

All of a sudden: Hygge!

2015–Creative Writing at the University of Cambridge, then Improv theatre. Now his first novel: The Poetic Murderer.

Christoph likes Rock and his simplistic lifestyle resonates with mystery and beauty. His right hand is the instrument of his daily writing practise.

100 British Limericks by James Patterson

100 British Limericks by James Patterson


Price: Paperback £5.99

ISBN: 978-1-9997156-3-2

Have you heard of the woman from Dover and how her husband wove her? Find out what rhymes with Aberystwyth.

100 British Limericks is a contemporary twist on the traditional limerick form, with a distinctly British feel. By turns whimsical, ridiculous, rude and outrageous, you won’t be disappointed.

Be careful where you read it though, you might just burst out laughing!

Author James Paterson is a primary school teacher from Salisbury in Wiltshire.

After a gap year spent volunteering at a children s care home in Nova Scotia, Canada, he graduated from the University of Southampton in 2005 with a degree in Geography.

James went on to teach English in Tokyo for four years in his mid-twenties and was there during the much-reported 2011 Earthquake. He has a great fondness for Japan and enjoys visiting whenever he can.

When not writing silly little poems, James likes to tread the boards at Salisbury s Studio Theatre. He developed a passion for telling his own limericks after eliciting chuckles from friends and family members alike. James then decided to put pen to paper to chronicle his ideas.

He is one of four brothers and attributes his love of humour to his close-knit family, especially his mother. The book is a nod to the country James is proud to call home. A Salisbury boy through and through, a mention of this fair city can be found inside.

100 British Limericks is a collection of his own work and is his first book.

Caught on Site: Confessions of a Tradesman by Dennis Swift

Caught on Site: Confessions of a Tradesman by Dennis Swift


Price: Paperback £7.99

ISBN: 978-0-9954805-6-8

Building sites can be a mucky place especially during the Winter months where puddles of water and mud are everywhere. It was also hard work especially plastering as you seldom got to see much of your fellow colleagues as everyone was spread out so there was very limited time for socialising.

Working on new build was so repetitive, mixing plaster and spreading it on the walls. boarding out ceilings was also a nightmare, those eight by four sheets were heavy and needed two people. I believe now they have a machine that raises the boards into place before fixing to the joists.

I always recall my first visit to the states where I stumbled upon a building site, it was fascinating watching the differences in practice compared to ours.  I watched two Mexican lads board out a ceiling in only a few mins. A lifting machine took the boards to the ceiling and these lads used a nail gun to fix them, these lads were also wearing stilts something Health & Safety would prevent in the UK. Here in the UK, we continued using galvanised nails and a hammer, we got there but it was hard graft.

New build was getting harder and a fortunate break saw me working on social housing. BS Heating wanted a plasterer to patch plaster where Electricians had rewired, this was a doddle compared to full walls and ceilings. This is where I met some of the craziest characters whose antics had you in stitches. I worked for a couple more companies that offered me a similar type of work but it was Durose & Gourlay where I met most of the characters featured in this book.

I have been tempted many times to write a book about these characters but no one would probably believe what they read. I can assure you that the contents of this book are almost 100% true and the people do or did exist.

The Lights came on for Marcia Duncan by Lynn Cavendish

The Lights came on for Marcia Duncan by Lynn Cavendish


Price: Paperback £8.95

ISBN: 978-0-9933714-7-9

Marcia Duncan, a young girl with learning difficulties, lives with her alcoholic mother in a small terrace house on a rundown council estate, manages to survive her non-eventful life with a mixture of hilarity, ignorance and naivety.    The only solace and comfort she has outside of her own little world is her best friend Molly, who, despite not being the idol Marcia perceives, takes her under her wing, protecting and guiding her through the highs and lows of growing up, moving forward from childlike activities in the park to the likes of disco’s, alcohol and fashion.

The day that Marcia was dragged by her mother to the doctors to find out that she was seven months pregnant changed her life forever. She genuinely had no idea how it happened, and after Molly explains the gory details, and Lily constantly bombards her with questions, the hunt for the father begins.

The consequent birth of her daughter is a blessing in disguise, giving her motivation for life, bringing family bonds to the surface and eventually a level of independence and self-worth. However, the journey is far from smooth, and the frequent times when Marcia’s clumsiness and accident-prone comical antics, hamper any kind of progress do not help in the least.

Author Lynn Cavendish was born in Bristol in 1956. Having a normal, loving stable childhood, she emerged from comprehensive education with no confidence, a multitude of o levels and CSE’s and had no idea what to do with them. Consequently, Lynn was directed by the ‘careers’ officer into banking and finance because she passed her ‘business practice exam’.

After her own children were born, she changed careers and became a support worker for children with special educational needs and worked for thirteen years in a school with a mixed intake of children from various backgrounds.

Here she realised her potential and as well as teaching, developed her creative skills and enabled her to compose poems, songs, assembly presentations and even choreographed the odd dance. Her humorous outlook brought some joviality and fun into learning, although on occasions did not go down too well in the staff room!

The Miss Adventures by Terri Ann Morley

The Miss Adventures by Terri Ann Morley


Price: Paperback £6.99

ISBN: 978-0-9929955-9-1

Terry Ann Morley was told by her Primary School teacher that she was ‘Not College material’ and by her father, ‘People like us aren’t teachers.’ Terry went on to prove both of them right by failing her English Literature ‘O’ Level three times.

She then went on to achieve a First-Class Honours Degree in Education and taught for twenty-five years.

Terry has three siblings, three children and three grandchildren. In the spirit of ‘Third time lucky’ she lives with husband number three and their three yellow Labradors.

During a spell of ill health, she was advised by her doctor to focus on positive memories: Terry focused on the unusual and quirky situations she had found herself in during her career and then she wrote them down.

HEALTH WARNING. This book of short stories will make you laugh and make you cry. It is a delightful journey back to long-forgotten school days and will resonate with everyone who ever went to school and that means: Everyone, everywhere.