THE PALMER CASES
Justin Palmer started off on the beat as a London policeman in the 1964 and is now Detective Chief Superintendent Palmer running his own serial murder squad from New Scotland Yard.
Not one to pull punches, or give a hoot for political correctness if it hinders his inquiries , Palmer has gone as far as he will go in the Met. And he knows it. Master of the one line put down and slave to his sciatica he can be as nasty or as nice as he likes.
The mid 1990’s was a time of re-awakening for Palmer as the Information technology revolution turned forensic science, communication and information gathering skills upside down. Realising the value of this revolution to crime solving, Palmer co-opted Detective Sergeant Gheeta Singh, a British Asian onto his team. DS Singh has a degree in IT and was given the go ahead to update Palmer’s department with all the computer hard and software she wanted . Most of which she wrote herself, and some of which is, shall we say, of a grey area when it comes to privacy laws and accessing certain databases!
Together with their small team of officers and one civilian computer clerk they take on the serial killers of the UK.
On the personal front Palmer has been married to his ‘princess’ , or Mrs P.
as she is known to everybody, for nearly thirty years . The romance blossomed after the young DC Palmer arrested most of her family who were a bunch of South London petty villains in the 60’s. They have three children and eight grandchildren, a nice house in Dulwich and a faithful dog called Daisy.
Gheeta Singh lives alone in a fourth floor Barbican apartment having arrived on these shores as part of a refugee family fleeing from Idi Amin’s Uganda . Her father and brothers have built up a good computer parts supply company in which it was assumed Gheeta would take an active role on graduating from University. She had other ideas on this, and also on the arranged marriage her mother and aunts still try to coerce her into. Gheeta has two loves, police work and technology, and thanks to Palmer she has her dream job.
Combining the old ‘coppers nose’ and ‘gut feelings’ of Palmer with the modern IT skills of DS Singh the two make an unlikely, but successful team. All their cases involve multiple killings and twist and turn through red herrings and hidden clues alike keeping the reader in suspense until the very end.
First of a Cracking Series!
I’m almost ashamed to admit these books had passed me by but a request from the author soon had me wondering why I hadn’t read this series before. I’m delighted to say I now have them all and I look forward to reading and reviewing them in order – not something a blogger often gets to enjoy!
DCS Palmer is in the midst of using some time off to attend to domestic matters when he gets the call to investigate a murder; along with his sergeant, Gheeta Singh, they begin their process. Before too long, they have a second body and then there is a connection with a third. Plenty to consider and my attention was grabbed!
Even after one novel, I can tell this is a series I am going to relish. The characters are beautifully crafter and work together because of their differences. Their personal lives are touched on but don’t take over the story – rather, they add to it. There is a hint of humour throughout, with the age difference between Palmer and Singh making me smile as the former refers to things which the latter has never heard of (I had!). I have to say that the author has a real gift for dialogue; more than once I was taken by how good the verbal exchanges were. Terrifically enjoyable in so many ways, and I look forward to the next one coming up on my list! Absolutely worth all five sparkling stars and my heartiest recommendation.
My thanks to the author for bringing his novels to my attention; I downloaded the entire series via Kindle Unlimited. This is – as always – my honest, original and unbiased review.
- Format: ebook, paperback
- Size: 146 pages
- Publisher: BSA Publishing
- Publication Date: 13 September 2014
- Book Links:
Faulkner was born into an extended family of petty criminals in Herne Hill, South London, his father, uncle, elder brothers and cousins ran with the notorious Richardson crime gang in the 70s-90s, and at this point we must point out that he did not follow in that family tradition although the characters he met and their escapades he witnessed have added a certain authenticity to his books. He attended the first ever comprehensive school in the UK, William Penn in Peckham and East Dulwich, where he attained no academic qualifications other than GCE ‘O’ level in Art and English and a Prefect’s badge (though some say he stole all three!)
His mother was a fashion model and was determined that her youngest son would not follow the family career path, she had great theatrical aspirations for young Faulkner and pushed him into auditioning for the Morley Academy of Dramatic Art at the Elephant and Castle, where he was accepted but only lasted three months before being asked to leave as no visible talent had surfaced. Mind you, during his time at the Academy he was called to audition for the National Youth Theatre by Trevor Nunn – fifty years later, he’s still waiting for the call back! After several sales jobs and sending advertising ideas to various agencies he was taken on as a copywriter with the major US advertising agency Erwin Wasey Ruthrauff & Ryan in Paddington during which time he got lucky with some light entertainment scripts sent to the BBC and Independent Television and became a script editor and writer on a freelance basis. He worked on most of the LE shows of the 1980-90s and as personal writer to Bob Monkhouse, Tom O’Connor and others. During that period, while living out of a suitcase in UK hotels for a lot of the time, he filled many notebooks with DCS Palmer case plots and in 2017 he finally found time to start putting them in order and into book form. 14 are finished and self published so far, with number 15 on the drawing board. To take a break from Palmer he moved into the ‘thriller’ genre with a series featuring International Private Eye Ben Nevis and his lady partner Alison Gold, known as The Gold Digger. Three are out and number 4 on its way.
Faulkner is a popular speaker and often to be found on Crime Panels at UK Literary Festivals which he embraces and supports wholeheartedly. Before the pandemic he was on Bristol Crime Fest indie panel; HULF Lit Fest and numerous Women’s Institute and other social clubs where he gives an illustrated talk on the big heists in the UK from 1930 to the present day and the ‘geezers watt dun ‘em.’
He has recently been seen on screen giving input in the Channel 5 Narcos UK series, Episode 2 The London Gangs and his DCS Palmer book ‘I’m With The Band’ has been serialised in 16 parts by BBC Radio Bristol. He has been a subject of many radio interviews including Corinium Radio’s Writer’s Room programme, Manchester FM’s Hannah Kate Book show, Hawkesbury Upton Lit. Festival ‘Best of British’ panel, Evesham Festival of Words Crime Panel, in the USA the Howard Lovy nationwide interview and Bristol Crime Fest Indie Crime Author Panel amongst others
As a crime writer Faulkner is quite particular about ‘getting it right’ and as well as his own Facebook page he publishes a page called ‘UK Crime Readers and Writers Page’ which has lots of information about the forensic crime detection methods, police procedurals and other facts of use to both reader and writer of crime and detective books.
Faulkner now lives in the glorious Forest of Dean with his wife and three dogs.