Today on my blog I host part of the blog tour for Stewart Giles new book The Beekeeper
BEEKEEPER by Stewart Giles
A shocking discovery starts a trail of mayhem on the Cornish coast.
Alice Green is a beekeeper in the small Cornish village of Polgarrow. One evening, Alice finds something strange under the hollyhock bush in her garden. The gruesome discovery will change everyone’s lives.
Detective Harriet Taylor has just transferred to the area from Edinburgh. As she investigates a series of shocking crimes, she grows close to the old beekeeper and is determined to bring the murderer to justice.
A crime mystery with a streak of black humour. You’ll enjoy this fast-paced and dark unearthing of the underbelly of a sleepy Cornish village.
After reading English & Drama at three different English Universities and graduating from none of them, I set off travelling and finally ended up in South Africa, where I still live. I enjoy the serene life running a boat shop on the banks of the Vaal Dam. I came up with the DS Jason Smith idea after my wife dropped a rather large speaker on my head. Whether it was intentional still remains a mystery. Smith, the first in the series was finished in September 2013 and was closely followed by Boomerang and Ladybird. Occam’s Razor, Harlequin and Phobia (a series of short stories detailing Smith’s early life) were all completed in one hazy 365 days and Selene was done and dusted a few months later. Horsemen, the seventh in the DS Smith thriller series is out now. The Beekeeper, a departure from the DS Smith series will be released through Joffe Books on 22 May.
Special excerpt from the book
The sun and the moon were in the sky together for a brief moment and then the sun disappeared behind the distant sea. The wind had picked up and the hollyhock bushes in Alice Green’s back garden were swaying in the cool breeze. She looked over the hedge into the Sedgwicks’ garden. The lights were on in the house, but Alice knew Eddie and Barbara were not at home. Eddie had told her they were going to watch a film in Trotterdown. She knew they would be gone for a good few hours but she still wanted to get what she was about to do over with as quickly as possible. She got to work with her green shovel, digging up the soil under the hollyhocks. She carefully removed the earth around her husband’s body, making sure not to dig too close to the corpse. It was hard work. After twenty minutes, Alice had only managed to dig a small hole. She wiped the sweat from her brow and carried on. Two hours later, Stanley’s body was lying on the grass. Alice had managed to drag him from under the bushes, but it had used up most of her energy. She looked at the dead body of the man she had married forty years ago. The skin on his face was grey in the moonlight. One of his eyes was missing. Where his ring finger had been was now just a black stump. It had taken a huge amount of effort to drag the body the few metres from the bushes, and there was no way she was going to be able to get him to the road to where she’d parked her van. There was only one thing for it, even though the very idea made her want to vomit. She was running out of time and she couldn’t leave the body lying on her back lawn. She went to the shed and grabbed her wheelbarrow and two industrial-strength refuse bags. The moon vanished behind a large cloud and Alice could barely see what she was doing. She waited for her eyes to adjust to the darkness. The wind pushed the clouds away and the moon reappeared, lighting up Stanley’s face. Alice wondered what had happened to his eye. It was odd seeing him so dirty. Stanley had always been neat and smartly dressed. It was one of the things she liked about him. Alice put the shovel on the spot where the shirt and trousers met and suddenly thought of the day Stanley had come home wearing that shirt, over ten years ago. She’d told him it made him look like a man in the grip of a midlife crisis, but Stanley hadn’t cared. He wore the shirt for years afterwards. Alice closed her eyes and brought the shovel down with all her strength. The shovel didn’t make any headway —the edge wasn’t sharp enough. Alice started to panic. What now? She lifted the shovel up and examined it closely. Why not? She went into the house and returned with the whetstone she used to sharpen her kitchen knives. Twenty minutes later, the shovel was ready. The sharpened edge glinted in the moonlight. Alice raised it up in the air, took a deep breath and brought it down with everything she had. There was a sickening crunch as the sharp edge of the shovel sliced through Stanley’s pelvis and wedged in the grass underneath. She managed to prise the shovel loose and moved it into position for another go. She paused for a moment to give herself a breather and thought about life with Stanley Green. It hadn’t always been bad. The first few years had been pretty good, in fact. Stanley was the perfect gentleman and he’d treated her like a princess. Then Alice thought about the first time she’d found out she was not the only princess in Stanley’s life and brought the shovel down so hard it nearly sliced his body in half. Emily Bright, Alice thought, that was her name. A most inappropriate name. Emily Bright. Legs that went on forever and a brain whose only purpose was to fill in the gap between her ears. Emily Bright had been the first. Alice had lost count of exactly how many others had followed. She lifted the shovel high in the air and slammed it down with all her might. Stanley Green’s body separated into two parts, like an earthworm cut in half. Alice wrapped the legs up first, put them in one of the refuse sacks and tied the opening with duct tape. She lifted the sack into the wheelbarrow and trundled it down towards her van. The road was deserted as she opened the back and bundled her husband’s legs inside. It made her feel sick, but she went through the same thing with the other half of Stanley.
Really looking forward to reading this novel. Hope you all enjoy.