When farmer Dan Maddicott is found shot dead in one of his fields, he leaves behind a young family and a farm deep in debt. Although the coroner records accidental death, village rumours suggest he has taken his own life so that the insurance payout can save his family from ruin.
Dan’s wife, Kate, refuses to believe the gossip and is determined to prove to herself, and her children, that his death was an accident. But could it have been murder? Kate discovers a set of old diaries containing secrets that may reveal how Dan really died.
Set against the backdrop of the farming crisis of the turn of the millennium, Caroline Kington’s absorbing family drama also tells the secret history of another resident of the farm, decades before, whose tragic tale will come to have major repercussions in the present day.
Readers can order the book from the Lightning Books website at 50% off (with free UK p&p) if you enter this code at checkout – BLOGTOURSHAD
MY INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR
- When did you know that you wanted to be an author? I started to write plays when I was a child and I continued to write them well into my professional life – usually bizarre, off-the-wall creations for the fringe theatre. Then I worked in tv documentary and the idea for a book, based on what I saw and learnt started to take shape.
- What inspired you to write this book? Living in the country, in the 1990s early 20s, we witnessed the effects of various farming crises and in particular BSE and then foot-and-mouth disease. All this, obviously, had a huge effect on the farmers and on the local communities. Suicide amongst famers shot up and farms folded. I made a documentary feature for C4 news charting, in particular, the growth in numbers of women going into farming, which coincided with the increase in the diversity of farm products and farming activities, and the advent of farmers’ markets. It was a remarkable period of crisis for our famers but rarely featured in literature or anything else. At the time, I had also made a documentary about Refuges and domestic violence, which is also a storyline in this book
- If you could sell this book in one sentence what would it be? (gulp) Was it an accident or was it suicide – nothing is as it seems.
- What are you up to next? I am in the process of editing a collection of my late husband’s letters for publication in September. It is called My Mother, The Bearded Lady. The Selected letters of Miles Kington. It’s been mammoth task as he wrote over 20,000 letters, but very rewarding. He was a humorist who had a daily column in The Times and then The independent. Once that is done I am chewing over the possibility of another Summerstoke book, or writing a fictitious biography
- Who is your biggest inspiration? Mary Wesley and my husband, Miles.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Caroline Kington spent most of her working life in theatre and television, as a director, producer and founder of the fringe theatre company Antidote Theatre.
Since the death of her husband Miles Kington, the columnist and broadcaster, she has posthumously published three of his books: a humorous memoir of his illness, called How Shall I Tell the Dog?; a collection of his columns and other writings, The Best By Miles; and a collection of his celebrated ‘Franglais’ columns that had not appeared in book form before, Le Bumper Book of Franglais.
In her own right, she is the author of the Summerstoke trilogy of rural comedies. She insists that no character in the series is based on anybody from the small village near Bath where she has lived for many years. Nobody believes her.
Her novel A Long Shadow had its origins in a feature she made for Channel 4 News at the turn of this century about the pressures on farmers as a result of BSE and foot-and-mouth disease.
Social Media Links –
Win 5 x PB copies of A Long Shadow (UK Only)
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.