Spring Reading Week: Addicted to Death (Matthew Redford) @Authoright @matthew_redford

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I am incredibly excited to be taking part in Authoright’s Spring Reading Week over the next week!

Featuring different authors in many different genres, hopefully you will find your next spring read!

First up, I am featuring Addicted to Death: A Food Related Crime Investigation by Matthew Redford.  Keep reading for a synopsis, an excerpt and a bit about the author!

Synopsis: Following the murder of Benedict and Darcy Blacktail, two eggs savagely beaten to death outside their home by an unknown, fedora wearing assailant brandishing a large metal spoon, Detective Inspector Willie Wortel, carrot and the leading food detective in the police force, is called in to investigate. When the only food sapiens minister in the Government, Professor Perry Partridge, is murdered at the Strawberry Strip Club, run by the young damson Victoria Plum, DI Wortel suspects that the two cases may somehow be linked. As the Head of the Food Related Crime Division, DI Wortel is ably assisted by his human colleague Sergeant Dorothy Knox. But as their investigation begins, four celebrity chefs are sent death threats. It’s a recipe for disaster as the incarcerated evil genius MadCow McBeef is seeking parole; someone appears to have crumbled Mr Bramley’s apples; and there is an anti-GM food protestor on the prowl. And why do Oranges and Lemons think they owe someone five farthings? DI Wortel and his team must find out who is seemingly addicted to death. It will take all efforts – human, fruit and vegetable – to figure this one out.

Extract

Benedict and Darcy Blacktail, two eggs very much in love, have been out for the evening when on their way home they have an encounter which results in a sticky situation.

The evening had closed in while Benedict and Darcy were in the theatre watching Titanic – the ‘rock’ musical, and as they left the building, the damp air pricked at Darcy’s shell as she pulled her feather boa tighter around her neck. Benedict also felt the dampness and pulled pocket a woolly hat from his pocket, slipping it on his head as Darcy watched and pulled a face.

“Look, I know you don’t like this hat Darcy, but I feel the cold just like you do.”

“It’s not that I don’t like the hat per se, it’s just that it makes you look like you are should be sitting on a breakfast table waiting for some soldiers.”

They smiled at each other and joined hands as they walked back home.

“I enjoyed this evening. I grant you it wasn’t the best show we’ve ever seen but you can’t deny it was catchy in places.”

Benedict looked incredulously at his wife. “To be fair, I wouldn’t have used the word catchy. Inappropriate maybe, but not catchy”.

“And what do you mean by that?”

“You didn’t think that the use of Status Quo’s song Down, down, deeper and down was inappropriate as the Titanic hit the iceberg?”

Darcy gave a snort and squeezed Benedict’s hand tight. “Well, maybe that wasn’t the highlight of the evening…”

The walk home was carefree, two happy eggs so comfortable with each other. They’d met at college and fallen head over heels in love almost instantly. They took the same classes, had the same interests and, despite of a brief separation when Benedict had a drunken dalliance with a gammon steak, everyone knew they were made for each other. Their wedding was a small affair, just close family and friends. Darcy looked stunning in a white cardboard dress adorned with a lacy frill and a British lion quality hallmark, and Benedict was so handsome in top hat and tails, standing beside his best man Travis. Three years had flashed past since that day, and although Darcy had not yet been fertilised, it was surely just a matter of time.

They neared Beaconborne Avenue, walking past the small community play area which,at that time of night, was occupied by teenagers sneaking a cigarette and doing nothing more than posturing. As they walked, Darcy glanced across to the swings and caught a glimpse of what looked like a tall figure wearing a fedora pulled down low over his face. She tugged at Benedict’s arm, catching his attention and nodded in the direction of the swing.

“By the swings, did you see that man?”

“What?”

“By the swings. Did you see that chap over there with the funny hat?”

“What man? There’s no-one near the swings.”

Darcy looked again, and although there was nobody in sight other than the smoking teenagers, she felt sure there had been someone watching them, especially as the swing was moving methodically back and forth as though someone had just been on it. They turned into Beaconborne Avenue, a long sweeping cul-de-sac which slept quietly with just some low level street lighting showing the eggs the way home. As they approached their home, Darcy started to rummage through her, trying to retrieve her keys as she wondered, not for the first time, how they always managed to evade her grasp when she needed them, and yet they were always within reach when she needed her purse or tissues. Just as her fingers found the keys, a soft yet firm voice surprised them both from behind.

“Mr and Mrs Blacktail?”

They turned around, surprised to find the soft voice came from a tall, powerful looking, albeit slightly jaundiced figure. He was actually quite tall, but a spinal curvature made him stoop so he appeared smaller than he really, though nonetheless imposing. He wore a long trench coat to try to hide the curvature but it remained obvious.

Benedict spoke first. “Who wants to know?”

“I’ve a message for you sir. I came to let you know that you shouldn’t have sent that email – it was mistake.”

“Bennie, what email?” asked Darcy, the nerves in her voice evident.

A look of concern crossed Benedict’s face. “I’ve no idea what you are talking about. Who are you?”

“I think you know very well what I am talking about Mr Blacktail.” He turned to face Darcy.

“Mrs Blacktail. I am sorry to tell you that your husband has overstepped the mark and I’m very sorry that you have been caught up in this tonight.”

There was sincerity about the statement which frightened Darcy more than anything, an impending sense of dread rising sharply in her chest.

About Matthew Redford

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Born in 1980, Matthew Redford grew up with his parents and elder brother on a council

estate in Bermondsey, south-east London. He now lives in Longfield, Kent, takes masochistic pleasure in watching his favourite football team snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, is a keen chess player and is planning future food related crime novels. To counterbalance the quirkiness of his crime fiction Redford is an accountant. His unconventional debut crime thriller, Addicted to Death: A Food Related Crime Investigation was published by Clink Street Publishing last summer.

Website – http://www.matthewredford.com/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/matthew_redford

Make sure to check out all the other stops during the Spring Reading Week!

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