This morning I am off to the Chinese consulate in an effort to get my visa sorted out for Shanghai. Hopefully it will nice and easy this year. There are a couple of pieces to be written today, but they will have to wait for a while. In the interim, I leave you with a thought: if you like my writings, have you considered buying my books? Yes, it is a plug for the books, but I am very proud of them and I think both of them are a decent read.
The Grand Prix Saboteurs is the amazing true story of how three motor racing stars of the 1920s and 1930s worked together as British secret agents during World War II in Occupied France. It is a story that has never been told before and is the result of 18 years of complicated research. The story is a real life swashbuckler with astonishing escapes, shocking betrayals and a story that you will never forget. All true. For more information, you can click here.
The Man who Caught Crippen is not a racing book, but it is just as extraordinary a tale as The Grand Prix Saboteurs.
Henry Kendall was a mariner and a hero of his age. In 1910 he shot to fame after becoming the first man to use radio to capture a criminal. Kendall suspected that one of his passengers was the celebrated murderer Dr Crippen. The radio message he sent resulted in Inspector Walter Dew of the Metropolitan Police racing to Liverpool to board a faster ship to Canada. In the newspapers each day the world watched… as the power of radio communication was proved for the first time, in the most dramatic fashion. Four years later, at almost exactly the same spot as Crippen had been arrested, in the St Lawrence Estuary, the RMS Empress of Ireland, which Kendall was commanding, was hit by a heavily-laden coal frieghter, with an ice-breaking bow. The liner sank in just 14 minutes, killing 1,012 people. By a quirk of fate Kendall survived. The story of his life reads like a work of fiction. He went to sea as a cabin boy at 15. He survived attempted murder, shipwrecks, torpedoes, icebergs, scorpion bites, cannibals, sharks, fevers, flying bombs and even a marauding leopard. The captain of an Atlantic liner by the age of 32, he played a key role in rescuing 800 refugees when the Germans invaded Belgium in 1914, using one liner to tow another out of Antwerp, despite attempts to stop the two ships leaving. If you would like to buy a copy, click here.
Right, off to the consulate!