About the Author

When I’m reading a story, I really don’t want to know what’s on the next page until I’ve finished the current one so will often cover the bottom lines to stop my eyes cheating. So don’t expect revelations about the stories or even too many hints about how they will develop. Just enjoy the additional period details as I did when researching them and try to transport yourself back in time.

Why write AGAINST THE TIDE?

I grew up in Jersey surrounded by the ruins of the German Occupation.  My mother lived through it and every adult I knew had a story to tell. My passion in the 1960s was swimming and water polo and I virtually lived at the Havre des Pas tidal swimming pool during the summer months. I was fascinated by the war and often wondered what it would have been like if I had been nineteen in 1939 and not 1965 and off to war instead of drama school in London.

After retirement, I tried to find out and started writing this first novel.  When the story line was settled, I made sure the action was historically accurate and spent months on research.  Over one hundred years of Jersey Swimming Club’s documents and photos were available in the Jersey Archive and I can tell you exactly how many visitors paid for a swim, how many ice-creams were consumed and what music was played over the loudspeakers for any given day in the summer of 1939.  Of course, I haven't burdened the reader with such detail but it certainly helped to transport me to the scene.

AGAINST THE TIDE is initially set in and around the swimming pool but quickly becomes an adventure as the main characters discover…

I've drawn on my skills of teaching dramatic improvisation for thirty-nine years to establish the characters then given them almost a free rein to tell their own story.  Like me, I hope you will be just as surprised by some of the outcomes! 

I hasten to point out that this is a work of fiction and all the characters are creations of my imagination and not representations of real people. While I might share some of Jack Renouf’s experiences in swimming and water polo, he is of my mother’s generation. He is not my alter ego!

Between you and me, he is far more interesting though I would not want to have experienced even ten percent of what he created for himself in this series through controlling my fingers on the keyboard.

Since I wrote this for the launch of AGAINST THE TIDE, three more novels featuring Jack Renouf have been published, THE LAST BOAT, DIAMONDS FOR THE WOLF, and IRISH LASS. The fifth, AMERICA FIRST will be published early in 2021.