Scientists claim their new sports drug will boost the performance of every athlete in the world. The Lambeth Group send scientist, Gavin Shawlens, to investigate the claim.
The product is stolen, top athletes disappear, and the research team are unaware that their product has a dangerous side effect. Gavin must stop the sports drug launch before more people die.
When Gavin disappears – Zoe Tampsin searches frantically to find him before he becomes the next victim.
As if Zoe hasn’t got enough on her plate. Past events in Gavin’s life catch up with him. A powerful US general decides that Gavin must die to prevent exposure of a 60-year old secret capable of world-changing and power-shifting events.
The chase is on…
Which character would you like to be in this book?
I’d like to be main character Zoe Tampsin. She is strong, confident of her actions, determined, and capable of defending herself against the most dangerous of people. But when things go wrong, or unexpected, and no longer under her control; she is vulnerable and fearful. When her back is against the wall, she shows her intuition, her imagination, and the fast-thinking guile needed to gain the upper hand.
Do you always take a book/eBook reader wherever you go?
Yes. Reading is a pleasure. If I’m not reading a book by another author, I’m editing my current work in progress, and making notes about what needs added or changed. I’ve stopped carrying a paperback with me. I prefer a Kindle Fire for the flexibility. I have hundreds of books available to choose. When I read, I can adjust the print size and lighting, which helps me now I’m older, and my eyes are not as sharp. And when my eyes get tired, I switch onto text-to-speech mode. It’s a human voice, and though not a natural as an audio book, it is easy listening. It means I can lie back, relax, close my eyes, and listen to any of the books on my Kindle. TOP TIP for authors, listening is great for editing. When reading, your eye might not pick up he when it should be, she, but your ear will pick it out right away.
Someone asks if they can use your name in a book. Would you rather be the ‘good one’ or the ‘bad one’?
I would be happy to be either. It’s fiction. Fictional baddies do monstrous things, and fictional goodies do wonderful things. Now, if someone said they were doing a biography; that would be different. I would want to know what they intended to say about me.
Do you prefer to read/write standalones or series?
The seven books in my Lambeth Group series are standalone stories. The first three do have an underlying thread that is tied off at the end of the third book, but they stand well alone. The glue that holds the books in a series is the recurring characters, Zoe Tampsin and Gavin Shawlens, and to some extend their friends and family. With them in place, a new standalone story can unfold that invades their life. I like doing a series because I like working with Gavin and Zoe, and developing their characters with each new book. Book eight is on the way.
Where can I find you when you are reading?
I can read and listen to books anywhere. When I’m reading for pleasure, give me an easy chair, let me put my feet up on a stool, give me a glass of Shiraz, and either a small packet of cashews, or a small box of chocolates, and I’ll be happy. If I’m reading for work i.e. research or editing, I’ll be at my desk, so I can write down what I’ve found.
Where can I find you when you are not writing/reading?
I live in Scotland, and when the weather is fine, there are lovely places for long walks. You are never far from the sea, so beach walking, and walking in the hills is within easy reach. When the weather is cold and wet, it’s time for the cinema/theatre, museums, castles, car trips, and eating out.
Can you walk past a bookstore without going inside?
There once was a time when I used to spend hours browsing in book shops. I still do it when I’m on holiday in the UK, but now I buy most of my books for my Kindle. Paperbacks strain my eyes because I should wear reading glasses, but I don’t need them for Kindle reading.
What are you most proud of?
My wife and my daughters.
What goes through your mind when you hold your new book in your hands for the first time?
Mixed emotions. Creating the story is the most enjoyable fun, so it’s sad when that part is over. Editing is demanding and draining, so there is great relief when it is done. With the book in your hands, that story is out of your head. Another has been growing, and is waiting in the wings, nudging and prodding, whispering sweet things in my ear. Gavin is in trouble; Zoe is fighting for her life. My heart is racing; I have to go and help them, so excitement and anticipation take over.
What piece of advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Stephen King said, ‘Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well.’ I completely agree. I write to enrich the quality of my life, and hopefully add a little to others who choose to read my books.
Thank you, Gordon Bickerstaff and damppebbles Blog Tours
About the author
I was born and brought up in Glasgow, Scotland. I studied biochemistry, and I’ve worked in several Scottish universities where I did research on enzymes, and taught biochemistry. After thirty years of teaching and research I retired my academic pen, and took of a mightier fiction pen.
I live in central Scotland with my wife and we enjoy reading, writing, and walking in the hills.
The Lambeth Group books follow the secret government investigations of agent Zoe Tampsin. A strong female protagonist with courage, determination, and guile. She is assisted by specialist consultant, Gavin Shawlens.