Crime Story

My crime story “Gorilla Tactics” appears The Book of Extraordinary Impossible Crimes and Puzzling Deaths, edited by Maxim Jakubowski, which is out now from Mango Books in the US. The tale is a very lighthearted take on the subject.

Here are the opening few paragraphs…


FIFTY YEARS AGO my grandfather was killed in very peculiar circumstances.

I only discovered the details from my mother earlier this year. All I knew before then was that my grandfather had died at the age of sixty-five, long before I was born. My mother rarely mentioned her father, other than to say he was a kind, loving man who had worked as a solicitor in the local town, five miles from the village of Humble Barton where he’d lived for most of his life.

“I’ve never told you much about Arthur, have I, Edward?” She indicated the black and white photograph of a tall grey-haired man in tennis flannels, a briar pipe clenched in his smiling mouth.

It was the occasion of my weekly visit. I poured my mother a cup of Earl Grey and one for myself.

“No, you haven’t,” I said. “A solicitor, wasn’t he?”

She nodded absently, sucking on a bourbon biscuit. “He worked for forty years in the firm of Shackleton, Vine, and Brooke, right here in Sherborne. Nice man. Salt of the earth, people said. Anyway,” she went on, “he was murdered.”

I lowered my teacup. “Murdered?”

“By a gorilla.”


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