The Lost Girls by Keith Jahans

by | Oct 26, 2021 | Author | 1 comment

My latest book is titled ‘The Lost Girls’ and features John Staff, a private enquiry agent, who is asked to verify that a missing daughter discovered by the police is who the police say she is. His investigation leads him into a world of corruption and violence where powerful men will stop at nothing to conceal their illegal activities.

This is an article about the book which I have submitted to the Author’s Lounge to give its readers some insight into my writing process and by doing so inspire them to create their own works of fiction.

A number of factors motivated me to write the story. The main one being the exploitation and trafficking of very young girls by powerful people, which has been very much in the news recently following the revelations surrounding the late financier Jeffrey Epstein. I wanted also to highlight the over reliance of DNA evidence by the police as such evidence depends very much on how it is obtained and handled during the course of an investigation. The novel shows how high ranking corrupt policemen can exert their influence. However, the power of these evil men can be tempered by decent citizens and honest police officers working hard to bring such people to justice.

This work of fiction is written for people who enjoy the private detective genre as I do, particularly fans of Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane, hence the first person narrative. The so called hard-boiled detective novels written by such authors have become synonymous with the “private detective” and part of western literary heritage.

I have been playing around with the central protagonists of the book, private investigator John Staff, his assistant Susan Lawson and her father Detective Chief Inspector Lawson, and making up stories about them since my teenage years. But it was only recently I decided to write them down and a year of enforced isolation during the covid pandemic provided that opportunity.

Above all, I hope my readers are entertained by the story. I have tried to provide a number of twists and turns to the plot to hinder them guessing the outcome. My goal is that they keep on reading right to the end. If I go some way to achieving this then I feel my efforts in writing the novel will not be in vein.

Currently the book is only available as an ebook on Amazon but in time I plan to produce a paperback version. Following the ebook’s publication I have posted some short stories featuring John Staff on Amazon in a bid to give sales of ‘The Lost Girls’ some traction. The stories are quite truncated and describe a number of cases he is called on to investigate. By doing this I hope I have provided readers a fuller insight into his character while at the same time providing some entertaining reading. It is early days yet but I hope my endeavours will reap a modicum of success.

I am known as a writer and microbiologist. In 2008 I retired from my post at the Veterinary Laboratories Agency where I led a small team of scientists involved in the diagnosis of bovine tuberculosis in animals. I formed Peatmore Press as an on-line magazine in 1996 to publish and promote my writing and established Peatmore Press as a Limited Company the following year. I do have first hand knowledge of DNA fingerprinting as the laboratory I managed used this technique when I was a working microbiologist albeit with regard to the identification of bacteria. Further information about me can be found at http://peatmore.com/aboutpeatmorepress.htm.

My latest book is titled ‘The Lost Girls’ and features John Staff, a private enquiry agent, who is asked to verify that a missing daughter discovered by the police is who the police say she is. His investigation leads him into a world of corruption and violence where powerful men will stop at nothing to conceal their illegal activities.

This is an article about the book which I have submitted to the Author’s Lounge to give its readers some insight into my writing process and by doing so inspire them to create their own works of fiction.

A number of factors motivated me to write the story. The main one being the exploitation and trafficking of very young girls by powerful people, which has been very much in the news recently following the revelations surrounding the late financier Jeffrey Epstein. I wanted also to highlight the over reliance of DNA evidence by the police as such evidence depends very much on how it is obtained and handled during the course of an investigation. The novel shows how high ranking corrupt policemen can exert their influence. However, the power of these evil men can be tempered by decent citizens and honest police officers working hard to bring such people to justice.

This work of fiction is written for people who enjoy the private detective genre as I do, particularly fans of Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane, hence the first person narrative. The so called hard-boiled detective novels written by such authors have become synonymous with the “private detective” and part of western literary heritage.

I have been playing around with the central protagonists of the book, private investigator John Staff, his assistant Susan Lawson and her father Detective Chief Inspector Lawson, and making up stories about them since my teenage years. But it was only recently I decided to write them down and a year of enforced isolation during the covid pandemic provided that opportunity.

Above all, I hope my readers are entertained by the story. I have tried to provide a number of twists and turns to the plot to hinder them guessing the outcome. My goal is that they keep on reading right to the end. If I go some way to achieving this then I feel my efforts in writing the novel will not be in vein.

Currently the book is only available as an ebook on Amazon but in time I plan to produce a paperback version. Following the ebook’s publication I have posted some short stories featuring John Staff on Amazon in a bid to give sales of ‘The Lost Girls’ some traction. The stories are quite truncated and describe a number of cases he is called on to investigate. By doing this I hope I have provided readers a fuller insight into his character while at the same time providing some entertaining reading. It is early days yet but I hope my endeavours will reap a modicum of success.

I am known as a writer and microbiologist. In 2008 I retired from my post at the Veterinary Laboratories Agency where I led a small team of scientists involved in the diagnosis of bovine tuberculosis in animals. I formed Peatmore Press as an on-line magazine in 1996 to publish and promote my writing and established Peatmore Press as a Limited Company the following year. I do have first hand knowledge of DNA fingerprinting as the laboratory I managed used this technique when I was a working microbiologist albeit with regard to the identification of bacteria. Further information about me can be found at http://peatmore.com/aboutpeatmorepress.htm.

1 Comment

  1. Julie Christine Round

    Hi Keith, Do let me know when the book is in paperback..
    I made the mistake of writing books for children during the pandemic, not realising that my usual sales method, personal, would not work as I did not mix with people of the right age who might like them for their children or grandchildren. In fact, of course, we stopped mixing altogether.
    I now have the three Penny Tales, ready for Christmas fairs as when people actually see them they are willing to buy.
    Best Wishes, Julie.

    Reply

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