Simon Parke  
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      a director's cut   a psychiatrist screams   a vicar crucified  

Cover of A (Very) Public School Murder

A (Very) Public School Murder

Excellence by the Sea is the strap line in Stormhaven Towers’ publicity. But when, at the end of the summer term, the hard-drinking, hard-smoking new Headmaster, Jamie King, is found dead at the bottom of the town’s famous white cliffs, this excellence comes under savage scrutiny.

Suicide is assumed at first; King wouldn’t be the first tormented soul to hit those unforgiving rocks. But unanswered questions remain. Forensics find no phone by the body and the head always had his mobile with him: ‘I wouldn’t want to be out when Eton ring!’ he used to joke.

Then there’s a second death at the school. With the pursuit of excellence exchanged for the pursuit of a killer who’s both clever and efficient, the dark corridors of Stormhaven Towers become an education in fear.

Who will be next?

Leading the investigation is the attractive and ambitious Detective Inspector Tamsin Shah, accompanied by Abbot Peter, recently retired from the deserts of Middle Egypt. Known locally as ‘the odd couple’, they’ve worked on cases together before.

It’s surprising, though, that the Abbot should wish to become involved again. The ruthless Shah brings danger to his seaside door; and through events at Stormhaven Towers, will do so again.

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‘Parke evokes the creepiness of the setting marvellously. He has a stunning ear for the way people actually speak, with pages of uninterrupted dialogue flashing by with the speed of a radio play.’

Fiona Hood, Church Times

‘I have never read a more gripping and unusual murder mystery than this. In an Agatha Christie-style English seaside village, the black vicar, Anton Fontaine, is discovered crucified in his own vestry.’