A John Pickett Novella
CreateSpace Publishing
ISBN-13: 978-1-5084-2443-7 (Paper)
Amazon Digital Services
Belgrave House/Regency Reads
ASIN: B00UQTGU0Y (eBook)
March 2014
Historical Mystery

London, 1798

Young John Pickett is none too gently arrested for stealing an apple and taken to Bow Street to pay the consequences of thievery. He's luckier in the magistrate than in his captor. Magistrate Patrick Colquhoun learns that John has no mother and that a man he'd recently sent to Botany Bay is his father. Taken together with the bent and bloody nose and blackening eye on John's face, Colquhoun goes easy on the fourteen year-old boy. Instead of sentencing him to prison, he has his coal merchant friend, Elias Granger, take him in as an apprentice until he's twenty-one. It means working twelve hour days loading and delivering coal six times a week for room and board. If that sounds harsh, it's better than what he had: being homeless and hungry with the ever-present chance of prison.

John buckles down to the work. At least he has a bed and meals…with the occasional leftovers from the young daughter of the house…uh, oh! Over the next few years while John walks the straight and narrow, he proves himself to be an intelligent and observant young man.

And that is how John Pickett came to work for Bow Street and to star in Ms. Cobb South's popular John Pickett Mystery stories. If you've read any of the series, you'll enjoy this look at the past. If you haven't read any—IN MILADY'S CHAMBER, A DEAD BORE, and FAMILY PLOT, with more to come—you'll surely want to get started. They are pure entertainment. Check out www.shericobbsouth.com to see what else she has to offer.

Jane Bowers