I do love a cover reveal and this one, the cover for the brand new Johnson & Wilde crime novel, Oxford Blues, is a cracker, coming your way in hardback this July.
Regular readers will know that I have enjoyed this series from the beginning, ever since Andy Griffee introduced us to the #CanalNoir genre with Canal Pushers, and the dark underbelly of canal life that is life aboard the Jumping Jack Flash narrowboat. The owner is Jack Johnson, a divorced freelance journalist who has an on-off relationship with widow Nina Wilde. The pair are sometimes joined by Jack’s pal Will, an irrepressible, good looking actor.
Canal Pushers was set in and around the Midlands canals and the follow up, River Rats was based in Bath around the Kennet and Avon Canal. The British waterways make for a really atmospheric setting and Griffee uses well-researched story lines to incorporate real-life tensions facing the canal boat community.
Now, Griffee’s third canal crime caper Oxford Blues is set, yes, you guessed it, on the River Isis.
What’s it about, I hear you ask?
Winter onboard a narrowboat can be a cold and lonely affair and Jack Johnson is keen to catch up with Nina Wilde, who has moved to Oxford to be near her niece, Anna, an undergraduate at the university, and rekindle the spark of their on-and-off relationship.
However, Jack’s relief at seeing Nina is soon tempered. Rather than growing closer, they seem to be drifting apart. Throwing himself into the search for a job, and the company of his new neighbours on the towpath of the River Isis, he’s soon distracted by the comings and goings on the nearby barges. But then a young girl’s body is dragged up from Iffley Lock by magnet fishermen and Caleb Hopper, her boyfriend and a classmate of Anna’s, falls under suspicion.
Nina is determined to help the young man, who’s a member of the prestigious Blues Boat rowing team and devastated by his girlfriend’s death. Jack is reluctantly pulled into the investigation in Nina’s wake. But at what price?.
I think it sounds TERRIFIC!
Let’s find out a little more about Andy Griffee…
Andy Griffee is a former BBC journalist and media consultant with a fascination for stories. He began his journalism career at the Bath Evening Chronicle, and then spent twenty-five years at the BBC, culminating in his role as Editorial Director of the redevelopment of Broadcasting House. Andy lives in Worcestershire and, when he isn’t writing, rears rare breed pigs, struggles to keep a 1964 Triumph Spitfire on the road and enjoys hiring narrowboats with his wife Helen
There you have it. Isn’t it fabulous?
Oxford Blues is out on 15th July 2021 from Orphans Publishing.