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It's December 12 and DI Andy Horton is called out to a gruesome catch

Fatal Catch - DI Andy HortonIt's Christmas and Inspector Andy Horton has a gruesome murder case to solve.

Fatal Catch opens on 12 December with DI Horton being called out to examine a gruesome catch by two fishermen: a human hand. Is it that of missing violent criminal Alfie Wright – or is he the killer? And where is the rest of the corpse? Soon Horton finds himself immersed in a complex case where everyone has a reason to lie and no one is who they seem. His instincts tell him to trust no one and believe nothing; he’s not sure though whether this time he’ll succeed …

Read an extract below

Wednesday 12 December

The call came through just as Nat King Cole was about to roast his chestnuts on an open fire, and just as Horton reached the head of the long supermarket queue. He scrabbled for his mobile phone inside his leather jacket, drawing a loud exhalation of disapproval from the woman behind him, while he threw an apologetic smile at the twenty-something cashier
processing the toys and books he was buying for his daughter, Emma. It was Sergeant Cantelli and he’d only call if it was important.
‘I’ll call you back in two minutes,’ Horton said hastily.
He pushed his phone back in his jacket pocket and stuffed the Christmas presents into three plastic carrier bags. He hoped Emma would like them.The thought that he no longer knew his nine-year-old daughter’s tastes caused him a surge of anger towards his ex-wife, Catherine,who seemed determined to keep him as far away as possible from Emma as she could. Catherine had begrudgingly allowed him to see their daughter on the day before Christmas Eve after which she was whisking her off to spend Christmas on the Côte d’Azur on board her new boyfriend’s luxury yacht. Peter Jarvis was chief executive of an international packaging company, divorced, and the fact that he was watching Emma grow up, while he was being shoved out, made the bile rise in Horton’s throat.
He hurried out of the supermarket feeling irritable. The grey sky was heavy with the threat of sleet and there was an icy edge to the north-westerly wind. Predictions of a white Christmas were coming thick and fast but his experience of living on the south coast of England told him that by Christmas it would be mild, wet and windy.He didn’t care either way. He’d be on duty. Much better to work than sit on his boat alone thinking of what he’d lost.
He crossed the crowded car park to his Harley, where he put the goods into the pannier, and called Cantelli.
‘Elkins has got a Christmas present for us,’ Cantelli announced.
That didn’t sound good. Dai Elkins was the sergeant in charge of the marine unit.‘It’s not a body washed up on the beach, is it?’ asked Horton,thinking about the last time he’d been called to view one, not by Elkins on that occasion but by former DCI Mike Danby who now ran a private close protection security company. That body had been found on the private beach of Lord Richard Eames’ extensive Isle of Wight holiday property, five miles across the Solent from Portsmouth, in mid-October, and the investigation had led Horton further in his quest to discover the truth behind his mother’s disappearance over thirty years ago. Not that anyone knew that, unless he counted Lord Eames, a client of Mike Danby, and the man Horton believed was involved in Jennifer’s disappearance.
He quickly shelved his thoughts on the progress of his own private investigations as Cantelli said, ‘It’s not a body, exactly.’
‘What do you mean, "exactly”?’
‘Don’t know. Dai said we had to see it. I’m on my way to Oyster Quays Marina. Hope it doesn’t mean I have to go on a boat,’ Cantelli added warily.
‘Probably. I’ll meet you there.’ Cantelli could get sick just looking at the sea, a decided drawback when living in a city surrounded by it.
Heading towards the popular waterfront development of shops,cafés, bars, restaurants and leisure outlets Horton was glad to let his troubled thoughts find refuge in work. He speculated on what Elkins might have in store for them which warranted the summoning of CID, and why he was being so mysterious. A stash of drugs? But then he’d have called the drug squad. Perhaps he’d retrieved some stolen goods. But neither of those things matched with not ‘exactly’. Well he’d find out soon enough he thought, swinging into the underground car park and riding the escalator to the shopping malls. A brisk walk through the crowded centre brought him to the waterfront where Cantelli was waiting by the marina gate.

Read more of the extract on Amazon

Fatal Catch is available in paperback, hardcover and as an e book and on Amazon Kindle and Kobo. Also available for loan from UK, USA and Commonwealth Libraries.

"Plenty of red herrings and a surprising culprit. Series fans will appreciate additional clues about the unsolved murder of Horton’s mother, Jennifer, more than 30 years earlier." Publishers Weekly

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DECEMBER 12TH, 2018 @ 15:21:26 GMT

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