Friday, 28 November 2014

Stalemate by Alan Hamilton 
Release Date:19th June 2014
Publisher: Silverwood Books
Genres: Crime

Walter had shared a home and a sort of life with her for over sixteen years. When he came to think of it, that’d been a bit like a game of chess too. He’d gone from the enthusiastic opening – through a midgame of jogging along – to the end game of barbed neutrality, a sort of emotional desert where no win was possible, a kind of stalemate. That had been the pattern for the last five years.

Summer 1930 and Walter Bruce is told he has a terminal disease. With nursing care and an easier job he could have five more years. With neither he may not see out the year. But he’s got a wife to keep – one too selfish and idle to be his nurse. When he finds out she’s been deceiving him about her past for years he comes to a stark decision: if she won’t take care of him he’ll have to take care of her – for good. He plans her removal like one of the chess problems he loves. It will be the perfect murder; he’ll get away with it and enjoy his last few years in comfort. But his carefully laid plans unravel, entangling him in a slowly closing trap where truth and lies become confused…

Set in between-the-wars Liverpool, Stalemate is a gripping tale of moral choices and terrible punishment

Stalemate is one of those excellently written books that perks your interest immediately and keeps you totally immersed from start to finish. Based on a true story, I found that I simply could not put this book down. It was intriguing and so engrossing that I lost all track of time when reading it. Following the story of Bruce, a door to door salesman in 1930's Liverpool, we are introduced to a rather downtrodden and ill individual with an unsupportive wife who is cold and constantly showing disappointment in Bruce. However, when Bruce discovers that his wife Janet has some surprising secrets of her own, he puts a chain of events in motion that will have consequences for his unsuspecting wife that will ultimately end in murder! Although Bruce is portrayed as calculating and a little cold, I have to say I loved the character. I thought he was interesting and complex and I felt a little sorry for him. Stalemate is an expertly written piece of fiction based on a real crime. It is clear that Alan Hamilton has done his research around the crime in order to write this book. Highly recommended! If you love crime fiction then this is the book for you!
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About Alan Hamilton

Alan Hamilton finds that real events, where there is a mystery or something unexplained, leave so much to the imagination they give the writer of fiction license to make it up. At heart he’s a conspiracy theorist though his head tells him accident is usually more likely – albeit far less interesting. As an antidote to the urge to write creatively, Alan is a publisher’s editor for non-fiction, academic books and journal articles. He lives by the sea in the South West of the UK. His hobbies are cooking and cryptic crosswords in the national newspapers, winning first prize twice in ten years.


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