Peter James Dead Man’s Time out on the 6th of June
Sunday Times No. 1 bestseller six times in the past three years in hardback and paperback, knocking off ’50 Shades of Grey’ from the no 1 spot in Autumn 2012, Peter James is back with the ninth novel in his award-winning Roy Grace series.
When Roy Grace is called to the burglary and assault of an elderly woman in her Brighton mansion, it appears to be a common, yet unusually brutal, antiques robbery. Millions of pounds worth of priceless collectables are missing, but to the Daly family there is only one item that is irreplaceable; a pocket watch that holds unimaginable sentimental value. As the burglary case becomes a murder inquiry, Detective Superintendant Roy Grace must act quickly to track down those responsible. But he is not the only one who wants to crack the case. The Dalys are prepared to do anything to get the watch back, including taking the law into their own hands.
As Grace delves deeper into the case, his journey leads him from the corrupt underworld of the Brighton antiques trade to the sinister ‘Costa Del Crime’ and right back to the feuding gangland waterfronts of 1920’s New York. It is a case that will push Grace to his limits, and time is running out…
‘Some will wait a lifetime to take their revenge…’
In July 2011 Peter James was having dinner in New York with a detective friend in the NYPD, whose great-uncle, Dinny Meehan, had been the ruthless head of the White Hand Gang – the Irish Mafia who controlled the New York and Brooklyn waterfronts from the 1850s until the mid 1920s. In 1920 five men broke into Meehan’s home in Brooklyn, and in front of his four-year-old son, shot dead Dinny Meehan. There was speculation whether it was a revenge attack organized by Capone, or a power struggle within the White Hand Gang from Meehan’s deputy, “Wild Bill” Lovett. Meehan’s widow had no doubts, confronted Lovett in a crowded bar, and soon he too was murdered. This story sparked an idea which grew into Dead Man’s Time, where instead of become a basketball player, the boy ends up in Brighton as a hugely successful antiques dealer. We pick up nine decades later, when he is an old man, with dark memories and an unsolved family mystery.
Brighton has always been a magnet for criminals; it is hardly surprising that the term “knocker boy” originated there. The knocker boys were the “rag and bone” men – literally knocking on front doors and frequently cheating people out of their antiques and valuables. Several former knocker boys helped Peter in his research, telling him their many tricks of the trade. Many of the seemingly legitimate Brighton antiques dealers were just as crooked as the knocker boys, hiding behind a veneer of respectability.
Another major source of inspiration for Dead Man’s Time came from an attempted break-in at Peter’s Sussex country home two years ago. Fortunately, nothing was stolen thanks to Peter’s dogs, but the incident sparked his curiosity about modern burglars and their motivations. Thanks to the Governor of Lewes Prison, Peter was allowed access to inmates, meaning he was able to gain some valuable insight into their motives.
Peter will be doing a tour of the UK in June and July
Thursday 6th June 2013
10.30 – 11.45 Signing at Tesco Lewes (Brooks Road, Lewes, BN7 2BY)
12.30 – 14.00 Signing at Tesco Hove (Church Road, Hove, BN3 2DL)
14.45 – 16.00 Signing at Tesco Shoreham-by-sea (Holmbush Centre, Upper Shoreham Road, Shoreham-By-Sea, BN43 6TD)
Friday 7th June 2013
12.00 – 14.00 Signing at WHSmiths (Churchill Square, Brighton)
15.30 – 17.00 Signing at Asda Hollingbury (Unit 1 Crowhurst Road, off Carden Avenue, Brighton, BN1 8AS)
18.00 – 19.00 Signing at Waterstone’s Brighton (71-74 North St, Brighton BN1 1ZA)
About Peter James
Peter James is one of the UK’s most treasured crime and thriller novelists. His Roy Grace detective novels have sold over five million in the UK alone and thirteen million worldwide in total. The series is now translated into 36 languages. Peter’s most recent Roy Grace novels, Dead Like You, Dead Man’s Grip and Not Dead Yet went straight into the Sunday Times bestseller lists at no 1 in both hardback and paperback, and in the Autumn of 2012, Not Dead Yet toppled the 50 Shades Of Grey trilogy off the No 1 paperback fiction slot, ending its 25 week domination of the chart. His novella, ‘The Perfect Murder’ (2010) went straight in at No 1 in the iBooks chart and spent 40 consecutive weeks in the iBooks Top 10.
Peter, an established film producer and script writer, was educated at Charterhouse then at film school. He lived in North America for a number of years working as a screen writer and film producer before returning to England. He has produced numerous films, including The Merchant Of Venice, starring Al Pacino, Jeremy Irons and Joseph Fiennes. A TV adaptation of the Roy Grace series is currently in development, with Peter overseeing all aspects, including the scriptwriting. In 2009 he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Brighton in recognition of his services to literature and the community. Peter is Patron of Crimestoppers in Sussex alongside Vera Lynn and in 2012 he was made Patron of The Whitehawk Inn. In 2011 Peter was made Chair of the Crime Writers’ Association. Peter has won many literary awards, including the publicly voted ITV3 Crime Thriller Awards People’s Bestseller Dagger in 2011 and he was shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Book Prize for Perfect People in 2012. As popular internationally as in the UK, he won the US Barry Award, for Best British Crime Novel for Dead Man’s Grip in the Autumn of 2012.
Born and brought up in Brighton, Peter divides his time between his homes in Notting Hill, London and Sussex. Peter is available for interviews and to write features. Find out more about Peter James at www.panmacmillan.com and Peter’s website www.peterjames.com and follow him on Twitter @peterjamesuk
Praise for Peter’s previous books
“Peter James has established a series that is taking over from Ian Rankin in sales…”
Mark Lawson on Front Row, Radio 4
“the pace never slackens. James is a serious crime writer and the work he puts into researching his stories always pays dividends for his readers.” Sunday Express
“James balances his highly original central notion with his usual nimble storytelling’ The Independent
“Peter James is acknowledged as being one of the top thriller writers in the UK, and his series of crime novels featuring DI Roy Grace are the best of the current genre” Joan Collins for The Mail on Sunday
Peter is available for interview and to write articles. For more information, to request a review copy or interview, please contact Sophie Ransom or Becky Short at Midas PR on [email protected] or [email protected] or call 020 7361 7860.