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National Crime reading Month event Westwood books

Criminal Histories: A discussion about writing historical crime novels with authors Matthew Booth, J.C Briggs and Deborah Swift. 

Saturday 18th June, 4pm - Free Entry

We're taking part in National Crime Reading Month! A month long celebration across the UK & Ireland throughout June 2022 from the Crime Writers' Association. Join our three authors who will be discussing writing historical crime novels, each with their own unique background and perspective. 

About our panellists

Deborah Swift used to be a set and costume designer for theatre and TV, during which time she developed a love of research which fuelled her passion for the past. She lives on the Lancashire/Cumbria border close to the mountains and the sea.

Deborah likes to write about extraordinary characters set against the background of real historical events and is the author of fifteen novels so far. Her first novel, The Lady’s Slipper was shortlisted for the Impress Prize and Past Encounters was awarded Best In Genre at the BookViral Millennium Book Awards. The Poison Keeper, her latest novel, is about Giulia Tofana who poisoned six hundred men in Renaissance Italy.

Matthew Booth is the creator of Everett Carr, a retired judge and amateur sleuth in the traditional mould, who appears in his debut investigation in A Talent for Murder, a traditional locked-room mystery and whodunit, which offers a contemporary twist on the format.  Published by Level Best Books, the novel is the first in a series.   

As a lifelong aficionado and expert on Sherlock Holmes, Matthew has written several books and short stories about the famous detective, including Sherlock Holmes and the Giant’s Hand.  He has written a number of scripts for a Holmes radio series produced by Jim French Productions in Seattle USA, as well as writing scripts for his own series about Anthony Rathe, a disgraced former barrister investigating crimes, for the same production company. 

An expert in crime and supernatural fiction, Matthew has provided a number of academic talks on such subjects as Sherlock Holmes, the works of Agatha Christie, crime fiction, Count Dracula, horror fiction, and the facts and theories concerning the crimes of Jack the Ripper. 

He is a member of the Crime Writers’ Association and is the primary editor of its monthly magazine, Red Herrings.  He lives with his wife in Manchester, England.

Jean Briggs taught English for many years in schools in Cheshire, Hong Kong and Lancashire. She now lives in a cottage by a river in Cumbria with a view of the Howgill Fells and a lot of sheep, though it is the streets of London that are mostly in her mind when she is writing about Charles Dickens as a detective.

The idea for Dickens as a private investigator came from re-reading Dickens in 2012 – the two hundredth anniversary of his birth.

More information about National Crime Reading Month here: