Browsing articles from "August, 2013"
Aug 30, 2013

NEWS! RC Bridgestock sold to Turkey in a three-novel deal!

 

 

28 August 2013

Press release for immediate release

RC Bridgestock sold to Turkey in a three-novel deal

The deal was struck with the Turkish publisher Trend Yayınevi for the first three RC Bridgestock novels (Deadly Focus, Consequences and White Lilies). The deal was negotiated by Kalem Agency of Turkey and Monika Luukkonen Literary Agency.

Literary Agent Monika Luukkonen said: “I am very excited about this deal which shows that RC Bridgestock crime novels are starting to get more and more interest from publishers outside the UK.”

RC Bridgestock is husband and wife crime fiction authors, Bob and Carol Bridgestock. With 47 years of policing between them they write compelling police procedural novels set in Harrowfield, a fictional town in Yorkshire and feature Detective Inspector Jack Dylan.

Darren Laws from Caffeine Nights, the Bridgestock’s UK Publisher, said: “This follows on from the rights sale into South Korea earlier in the year and marks a fantastic year for Bob and Carol Bridgestock. They have been working as consultants with Red Productions on a new BBC crime drama Happy Valley, and ITV’s award winning crime drama series, Scott & Bailey.”

A fourth novel is about to be added to RC Bridgestock’s works with the publication of Snow Kills in November published by Caffeine Nights Publishing.

“Bob, Carol and I would like to thank Monika Luukkonen for her hard work in selling the rights to these titles,” Darren concluded.

Ends…

 

‘Knango Days na Safari a busi’ – ‘Coping Strategies’ a collection of short stories by Hugh Harrison

‘Kinango Days na Safari a busi’

by Hugh Harrison

The overnight bus from Nairobi Airport to Mombasa was an eye-opener. It was the equivalent of arriving in a space shuttle and leaving in a stagecoach with the roof of the Leyland bus stacked high with sacks of maize, rice, beans, tools, stoves, blankets, furniture and miscellaneous cooking utensils.

Wenda wapi, wazungu, where are you going Europeans’.

The question was directed at Jo and me, having recently arrived as Project Trust Volunteers from Dachet, near Windsor, U.K.

‘Wenda Mombasa, mzee, we’re going to Mombasa, sir’, Jo replied to the old man.

‘Vizuri sana, na safari njema, very good, and have a nice journey’, the old man added, as we shoved our huge rucksacks on to the luggage racks above our heads. Sitting all around us were a mixture of returning office workers, government officials, peasant farmers cuddling cages of live chickens, young women nursing babies and a few intrepid travellers like us.

            The last time I was in Kenya was in 1957, the year Mum died from a fatal illness, so going back was like some kind of pilgrimage to my Anglo-African roots, and I wasn’t sure what I might find fifteen years on. No amount of ‘country familiarization’ would prepare us for our sojourn to a remote Harambee (self-help) Secondary School in the arid coastal region of Kwale, fifty miles from the historical port city of Mombasa, made famous through its key role in the Arab-European Slave Trade.

            Jo and I had spent the previous six weeks in the UK doing an intensive TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course to prepare us as volunteer English and core curriculum teachers for the coming year. Neither of us knew what to expect, but we both agreed that this was going to be a worthwhile challenge, despite us being somewhat naïve to say the least.

            Leaving Nairobi Airport behind us in a blaze of lights and jet engine noise, we were glad to be on our way at last. Ahead of us was a 600 mile journey on one of Africa’s most notorious highways, claiming more lives than any other road in East Africa. We were soon to learn why it had this unenviable reputation. When we weren’t heading forward helter skelter with horn blaring and lights flashing, we were dodging at high speed around innumerable, wheel-sized potholes wrenching at our seats and backs.

‘Perhaps we should have taken the train, after all’, I said to Jo. ‘You’re absolutely right we should!’

            After about two hours of fitful, terrorized sleep, the bus pulled into a long lay-by filled with Indian and African traders illumined with a kerosene lamp selling everything from bunches of bananas, pineapples and nuts, to bags of small, sweet cakes and bottled water.

1

‘Wazungu, wazungu,  napenda chakula, maji, Europeans, would you like to buy food, water?’

‘Hapana, mama. Asante sana, no thanks, mother,’ was our official line as we had been warned of the perils of unwashed fruit and food of doubtful provenance.

Looking up above us, I was utterly amazed by the plethora of bright stars and galaxies, which made our safari seem very humble by comparison. As I was contemplating the far reaches of the constellations, a man spoke to us. He was wearing a Moslem prayer hat, and had distinguished look about him.

‘Hamjambo, vijana, how are you, young men?’

‘Hatujambo, Mzee, we’re fine, sir’, we replied.

‘Wenda wapi, where are you going?’

Wenda Mombasa. Ku-fundisha, Mzee, we’re going to Mombasa to teach’, Jo replied.

Vizuri sana. Ku-fundisha gani, very good. To teach what?’ he asked.

‘English, Mzee’, I replied.

Vizuri na bahati, vijana, good luck, young men’, he wished us.

‘Asante sana, Mzee, we chorused, clambering back on to the bus, feeling refreshed from the cooler, night air.

This genuine warmth and hospitality of the ordinary people touched me and reminded me of visiting family in Ireland, where you were always presented with a cup of tea, and a slice of soda bread the moment you walked through the front door. I wondered if it was something to do with the simple hospitality of indigenous cultures, which we seemed to have lost back home.

Early memories of growing up in Kenya were redolent of the sounds of bands of watoto chasing bicycle wheels across the waste ground; women cooking food on open fires in front of their huts and the ubiquitous smell of smoke and goats ‘urine. Now I was returning.

The next moment it seemed as if the sun was rising above the rims of the waving palm trees as the bus driver, having exhausted all his adrenaline, was steering us towards the relatively well-policed highways of Mombasa. As we approached the environs of the city, we noticed all around us serried ranks of tin shacked huts with sacking walls and no windows, open sewerage in between them, and the smells of effluent and smoke began to assail our olfactory sense.

‘Ladies and gentleman, wanaume na mabibi, we are arriving, so please gather your luggage and prepare to disembark the bus’.

 

2

The driver’s announcement was greeted with audible sighs of relief, and laughs. Jo and I looked at each other, and felt we had been blessed by a guardian angel to have arrived in Mombasa in one piece. The atmosphere in the bus now became quite animated and festive as people began to finish off their journey’s rations prior to their safe arrival, and started to chat animatedly to relative strangers around them.

As we drove into Mombasa’s heaving bus station, we could see all around us a bustling throng of traders, travellers, be-turbaned Sikhs, Muslims, Indian ladies in diaphanous saris , beggars without legs or arms; workers queuing in blue overalls, men on bicycles stacked high with colourful utensils or livestock, and students in beautifully starched shirts and tunics. We had finally arrived in Africa.

Feeling a parched thirst and hunger upon me, I suggested to Jo that we find some salubrious sustenance before we began looking for the Kinango bus. He agreed with alacrity, and having stowed our rucksacks in ‘Left luggage’, we were soon on the lookout for some kind of wholesome breakfast. As we wandered around the environs of the bus station, we were both amazed to see the incredible juxtaposition of Arab- Swahili dwellings, mosques and Hindu temples. This felt very familiar territory to me, having imbibed some of the city’s exoticism with my mother’s milk, so to speak.

However, we were a world away from ‘tea and toast’ and the nearest thing to breakfast that we could muster was ‘chai wa Kenya’ (Kenyan tea with boiled milk). As we drank this peculiar brew tasting of stewed tea with ginger and nutmeg, we looked at each other with foreboding realizing that nearly a hundred years of colonization hadn’t resulted in even a decent beverage. Still, we weren’t tourists, were we, but seasoned travellers. We liked to think.

We finally settled upon Chai mbili na mahindi ku-pika, two teas and roasted maize for breakfast, and began to feel somewhat refreshed and capable of facing the next leg of our journey to Kinango village, Coast Province.

 

-oOo-

 

 

 

 

 

‘Snow Kills’ – 4th novel in the DI Dylan series!

Coming Soon!

‘Snow Kills’ – RC Bridgestock

4th Novel in the DI Dylan series

(N.B Wording to be added regarding our work with Red Production Co. http://www.redproductioncompany.com/ ITV 1 & BBC 1 police series. More info. v. soon!)

Pre order your copy week commencing 5th August 2014 via Amazon/Caffeine Nights Publishing http://www.caffeine-nights.com/!