Three generations of women from the Skelfs family take over the family funeral home and PI businesses in the first book of a taut, page-turning and darkly funny new series.
I can’t say a lot because I’m due to review this book as part of the blog tour in January, but having read it a few weeks ago, I couldn’t not include it in my favourite reads of 2019.
It is funny, touching, full of a stunning ensemble of female characters and seriously one of the best books I have read this year.
I can’t wait to publish my full review in January.
About the author
Doug Johnstone is a writer, musician and journalist based in Edinburgh. His seventh novel, The Jump, was published by Faber & Faber in August 2015. Gone Again (2013) was an Amazon bestseller and Hit & Run (2012) and was an Amazon #1 as well as being selected as a prestigious Fiction Uncovered winner. Smokeheads (2011) was nominated for the Crimefest Last Laugh Award. Before that Doug published two novels with Penguin, Tombstoning (2006) and The Ossians (2008). His work has received praise from the likes of Irvine Welsh, Ian Rankin, William McIlvanney, Megan Abbott and Christopher Brookmyre.
In September 2014 Doug took up the position of Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh. Doug was writer in residence at the University of Strathclyde 2010-2012 and before that worked as a lecturer in creative writing there. He’s had short stories appear in various publications and anthologies, and since 1999 he has worked as a freelance arts journalist, primarily covering music and literature. Doug is currently also working on a number of screenplays for film and television. He is also a mentor and manuscript assessor for The Literary Consultancy.
Doug is one of the co-founders of the Scotland Writers Football Club, for whom he also puts in a shift in midfield. He is also a singer, musician and songwriter in several bands, including Northern Alliance, who have released four albums to critical acclaim, as well as recording an album as a fictional band called The Ossians. Doug has also released two solo EPs, Keep it Afloat and I Did It Deliberately.
Doug has a degree in physics, a PhD in nuclear physics and a diploma in journalism, and worked for four years designing radars.
He grew up in Arbroath and lives in Portobello, Edinburgh with his wife and two children.