A detective, his boyfriend and their dog. That’s the Lindenshaw mysteries in a nutshell. Old Sins is the fourth instalment in the series, and not only does Robin have a murder to investigate, he and Adam have got the “little” matter of their nuptials to start planning. And, of course, Campbell the Newfoundland gets his cold wet nose into things, as usual.
About Old Sins
Past sins have present consequences.
Detective Chief Inspector Robin Bright and his partner, deputy headteacher Adam Matthews, have just consigned their summer holiday to the photo album. It’s time to get back to the daily grind, and the biggest problem they’re expecting to face: their wedding plans. Then fate strikes—literally—with a bang.
Someone letting loose shots on the common, a murder designed to look like a suicide, and the return of a teacher who made Robin’s childhood hell all conspire to turn this into one of his trickiest cases yet.
Especially when somebody might be targeting their Newfoundland, Campbell. Robin is used to his and Adam’s lives being in danger, but this takes the—dog—biscuit.
About the Lindenshaw Mysteries
Adam Matthews's life changed when Inspector Robin Bright walked into his classroom to investigate a murder.
Now it seems like all the television series are right: the leafy villages of England do indeed conceal a hotbed of crime, murder, and intrigue. Lindenshaw is proving the point.
Detective work might be Robin's job, but Adam somehow keeps getting involved—even though being a teacher is hardly the best training for solving crimes. Then again, Campbell, Adam's irrepressible Newfoundland dog, seems to have a nose for figuring things out, so how hard can it be?
An interview with Charlie Cochrane
Your latest release is Old Sins. What can you tell us about it?
Old Sins is about a murder in a leafy English village – rather like some of the villages near where I live – which appears to be connected to a cold case, that of a child who died in mysterious circumstances in the grounds of a country estate during World War Two. There are online groups of people obsessed with the death, believing it was a case of murder, committed by someone with enough influence to cover it up. Historical and contemporary events start to interweave. Oh, and somebody might just be trying to kill Adam and Robin’s dog, Campbell.
What part of a new story comes to you first?
Now, there’s a question. If it’s an existing series, like the Lindenshaw one, it’ll often be a conversation between the two main characters, or perhaps one of them thinking about a development in their lives. For other books, there’s no rhyme or reason whether a plot idea or a character comes first. In one case all I had was a setting – a WWI trench – which I just started to populate with soldiers and see where it took me. It’s fun being a ‘pantser’, because as we write, the main crux of the tale can become something entirely different!
What authors, inside and outside of the m/m genre, do you most admire?
How long have I got? Inside m/m I admire Alex Beecroft, Elin Gregory, Tamara Allen, JL Merrow…the list goes on and on. They all have a neat turn of phrase, although their styles are different, and an economy of language that means there isn’t anything getting in the way of the tale. I really dislike reading rambling prose. They can all display a rather nifty sense of humour (particularly Jamie), which is something I like in the writers I go for. Jerome K Jerome, Len Tyler, Christopher Fowler: all of them make me laugh out loud.
I also admire efficient characterization, so Patrick O’Brian has to be on my “top authors” list, as does Mary Renault. Both of them create characters which are entirely believable and highly engaging. And Ms Renault could say more in one sentence – sometimes in one word – than most authors can in a page!
Where did the inspiration for the Lindenshaw series come from?
Two sources. One is the cosy mysteries I’ve always loved to read and watch. I wanted to try my hand at writing one that featured a gay policeman. Adam, his teacher partner, came from my years of being a school governor and the years I spent delivering freelance training to other governors. Feelings can run pretty high when you get people with different views and aspirations in a room, especially if the matter is recruiting a new headteacher. I remember driving home one day from such a course and thinking, “What would happen if those feelings got channeled into either murder or romance? Or both?”
What is your favorite way to relax?
Watching sport on the telly is the best way to relax (I confess I have the indoor bowls on TV as I type this!) I also like a nice, long, scaldingly hot bath, with a good book to read while I’m in it. Outdoors, I like going for walks, especially at the seaside, visiting museums and historic sites, and going to the theatre. I’ve been lucky enough to see some remarkable performances, like Yul Brynner as the king in The King and I, David Tennant as Hamlet and Dustin Hoffman as Shylock. We’ve also just discovered cruising and it’s wonderful. A sort of floating Harrods where you wake up in new places.
About Charlie Cochrane
Because Charlie Cochrane couldn't be trusted to do any of her jobs of choice—like managing a rugby team—she writes. Her mystery novels include the Edwardian era Cambridge Fellows series, and the contemporary Lindenshaw Mysteries. Multi-published, she has titles with Carina, Riptide, Endeavour and Bold Strokes, among others.
A member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, Mystery People and International Thriller Writers Inc, Charlie regularly appears at literary festivals and at reader and author conferences with The Deadly Dames.
Connect with Charlie:
● Blog: charliecochrane.livejournal.com/
● Twitter: @charliecochrane
● Facebook profile page: facebook.com/charlie.cochrane.18
● Goodreads: goodreads.com/goodreadscomcharlie_cochrane
To celebrate the release of Old Sins one lucky person will win a swag bag from Charlie! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on February 16, 2019. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following along, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!