A world built of words
visit the far corners of the earth, live a thousand lives, read.
And The Earth Moved
“Romantic comedy meets celebrity murder mystery”
Can a barmaid convince a secret agent she can help him solve a celebrity murder mystery?
Amber’s making up the horoscopes for the local paper and wishing for some excitement in her life when she gets a phone call offering her just that. It could change her life forever and plunge her into a world where she’s quickly (and scarily) out of her depth.
The call? Heartthrob actor Ennis McKarthy, her old uni boyfriend, begs her for a favour. His brother Joel has been found is dead - in very suspicious circumstances.
Desperate to keep the story out of the newspapers and solve the mystery of his brother’s death as fast as possible, Ennis has called in the specialists in the shape of the CCIA. The Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency has just the man for the job – their top agent Charlie Huxton.
But Ennis, stalked by journalists and paparazzi, doesn’t trust a stranger to handle the case on his own and keep quiet about what he might discover so he pleads with Amber, wanting her to shadow Charlie throughout the investigation.
Much to Amber’s surprise Charlie eventually agrees, leaving her wondering why. What’s he up to?
Charlie and Amber delve into Joel’s death and soon have their hands full with questioning potential suspects and the victim’s irate ex-girlfriend. Then they discover they’re battling something far more dangerous than they could ever have expected…and it’s not just their growing attraction for each other.
Maybe Amber’s life is about to get too exciting…
“What kind of excitement are Gemini’s going to have this week?” I ponder, tapping my fingers against the keyboard.
I’m a third of the way through making up the horoscopes for this week’s local paper. Aries are going to get news of a fantastic job opportunity. Capricorns will receive some kind of windfall. But what about Gemini? I always like to give my Madam Zamber horoscope column an upbeat feel – after all, nobody reads their star signs to get depressed right?
My fingers hover over the computer keys as I debate on Gemini’s fate. I’m a Gemini so this one better be especially good; it’s been a rough week.
My phone, nestled somewhere in the depths of my bag, starts playing a chart tune at full volume. When I eventually find it I check the caller display and see Ennis’ name.
Ennis and I haven’t spoken for a while but I know he came home last week after he’d finished working on his latest movie, he sent me a text. He probably wants to meet for a coffee and a catch up. It’s strange; to me Ennis is, well, just Ennis. I don’t think of him as a heartthrob actor, just my ex, my university boyfriend, who I meet up with for a chat whenever he’s in Palstone.
Time for a little break from the horoscopes. I hit the answer button.
“Hi, how’s things?” I ask, leaning back in my chair.
There’s nothing but silence on the other end of the line.
“Ennis?” I sit up, instantly concerned. “Are you there? Is something wrong?”
His voice is so quiet I can barely hear him. “Joel’s dead,” he says.
“What?” I shout, leaping to my feet and earning myself a look of curiosity from the other two members of staff at The Palstone Courier. I lower my voice. “How? What happened?”
“We don’t know yet,” he replies, his voice heavy with emotion. “But the police are saying he died in suspicious circumstances.”
I gulp. “You mean murder?”
“Look, Amber can you please come over?” Ennis says. “Now? Please? I need to ask you a huge favour.”
I grab my jacket and bag. “On my way.”
A murdered pop star on a remote Scottish island – it’s all in a day’s work for Amber Reed, the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency’s newest recruit…
When celebrities need a crime solving quickly and discreetly they call in the specialists, the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency, otherwise known as the CCIA…
Who would want to murder former pop star Flynn Garrison?
That’s exactly what Amber Reed, the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency’s newest recruit, needs to find out.
She’s desperate to get to grips with her first assignment and prove she’s up to the job but there’s a lot at stake… and it’s not only her new career that’s on the line.
Is mixing business and pleasure ever a good idea? Will her relationship with fellow CCIA agent Charlie survive the challenge of the two of them working together?
And then there’s agent extraordinaire Martha, a man-eating six foot blonde goddess, also assigned to this murder investigation, who clearly has designs on Charlie.
Trying to uncover who killed Flynn and why whisks Amber from glamorous red carpet film premiere, to learning Scottish dancing at a Highland party in a grand country house - and the distinct possibility of becoming the murderer’s next victim.
Can Amber solve the case and still keep her relationship with Charlie on track?
“Ah, good, you’re back.” Bethan, the woman who owns the B&B, says as we dash into the entrance hall, dripping rain all over the carpet. She’s standing behind the little reception desk and next to her is a stunningly attractive woman in jeans and a close-fitting jumper, a suitcase at her feet. “I was just talking to Martha here about how you were both down at the beach with the murder victim.”
Strange – does she usually welcome guests by telling them about bodies washing up on the local beach?
“It hasn’t been confirmed as murder,” Charlie says, following me inside, head down as he pulls off his wet coat. “Not officially.”
The beautiful woman steps forward, ignores me and envelopes Charlie in a hug, catching him off guard. “Charlie!” she squeals excitedly. “It’s ages since we’ve worked together. So good to see you again!”
Did she just say “work together”?
I watch as Charlie hugs her back, meeting my questioning gaze over her shoulder.
“Martha, what are you doing here?” he asks once she’s eventually disentangled herself from him.
“The agency sent me to help you out with this case.” Martha casts a dismissive look in my direction. “They wanted their best agents working up here. So,” she shrugs her shoulders in a here-I-am way, “they sent me to work with you. I understand this is Amber’s first case and we don’t want her getting all overwhelmed on an important job like this do we?” She giggles and pushes a hand through her long honey-coloured hair.
They’ve sent Miss Beautiful CCIA Agent to work with Charlie. I’ll probably be relegated to fetching her cups of coffee and typing up her paperwork.
“Anyway,” Miss Beautiful continues, “the boss wants a thorough investigation and expects us to be on this godforsaken island for a while so I’m told the guys back at base have arranged a rental cottage for us all to share. If you want to get packed and meet me back down here then I’ll lead the way to our new home. Ten minutes OK?”
Not only do my new employers not trust me to do my job, they send another agent, a very beautiful one with a superior attitude, to work with Charlie and me on this case.
Oh, and we all get to share a rental cottage together as well.
I was so wrong when I thought this day couldn’t get any worse…
I'm a bookwhore, yes I said it, I have no shame, I will wander off with any old book I'm not even a little bit ashamed. Twenty Seven, Mum, SEND Teaching Assistant, general beauty hoarder and lover of the Irish.