The Vodka Trail – AA Abbott

Kat White ended up a penniless teenager marooned in London when her parents died in a foreign prison. She blames Marty Bridges, her father’s business partner, for their deaths.

Now Kat wants to recover the family vodka business and stop Marty’s gravy train. But when she’s taken hostage by terrorists, Marty holds her life in his hands…




I am very happy to share an extract with you. Enjoy!


Outside, light snow had begun to fall. There were no cabs. A battered black Mercedes ground to a halt next to her.

“Taxi?” the driver asked.

Kat didn’t answer. She looked around anxiously, shivering in the snow. There were no other vehicles in sight.

“American?” the driver asked, hopefully. He was a slim Bazaki lad, about her age.

“English,” Kat said. “Kireniat Mall?”

He nodded. “Five dollars.”

She opened the passenger door and sat on the worn leather seat next to him. In her childhood, she’d heard of gypsy taxis, the informal transport that appeared whenever a driver had spare time and a desire to earn extra cash. Her family would never use one, of course; there was no need, when both her parents drove.

“I practise English, okay?” the lad announced in a marked local accent. He quizzed her for a while, taking a route that she thought circuitous.

Looking at the snow, she told him she would buy furs.

“My uncle’s shop in Kireniat Mall is best,” the driver said, offering to collect her later and return her to her hotel.

Like much of Kireniat, the Mall was brand new and glitzy, a world away from the untidy bazaars that Kat remembered. She found the furrier and marvelled at the soft sables, snow leopard and wolfskin on display. Although unsentimental about animals, she was also realistic. Such furs might be practical in Bazakistan, but in London they would attract attention of the least admiring kind. She chose a long white leather coat and matching hat, negotiated a discount for dollars, and made a beeline for a few more boutiques. Humming along to the piped Stravinsky, she returned to the waiting Mercedes with her purchases.

“The Intercontinental?” her new friend asked.

“Sure,” Kat said. She mused dreamily about chilling out in the hotel spa, perhaps visiting a nightclub later. Fatigue slowed her reactions. When her driver wove in and out of backstreets, she didn’t think to question his route. She didn’t even think, in the split second when the car stopped at a red light and two more young men jumped in through the rear doors, that she should leap out. The lights changed, the driver locked the doors, and her chance of salvation passed.

Thank you, AA Abbott and Love Books Tours Group


About the author

English thriller writer AA Abbott’s real name is Helen Blenkinsop, but like JK Rowling, she wanted to . She loves city life, having lived and worked in London, Birmingham and Bristol. Her crime thrillers, set in Birmingham and London, sizzle with suspense, twists and the evils of office politics.

Helen’s books are available in a dyslexia-friendly large print as well as standard paperback and Kindle editions.

Her Trail Series follows the fortunes of glamorous blonde Kat White, a party girl who finds her purpose making vodka, shrewd businessman Marty Bridges, and manipulative East End crime lord Shaun Halloran