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Blood On His Hands: Bishop's Stortford author Ian McFadyen's eighth Inspector Carmichael thriller

If you happen to bump into author Ian McFadyen beware, as you might see yourself as a character in his next thriller.

Ian has just published his eighth book in the Inspector Steve Carmichael series and says he has every intention of continuing with the detective's sleuthing in rural Lancashire.

Blood On His Hands begins with a stranger walking into a church to reveal to the vicar that he has murdered someone. After the stranger – who, as the title suggests, had blood on his hands – disappears, he is found murdered in the boot of a Bentley. From there the plot thickens.

Ian, 59, who retired from his job in the electronics industry to concentrate on his writing, was born in Liverpool and grew up in a rural environment in Lancashire, which is where the thrillers are set.

"I wanted to write about a rural setting that I knew about," he told the Indie. His style is pacey, with short chapters which keeps the tension going and maintains the plot. "I try to write as I like to read," he said.

Ian revealed he loves coming across different characters for his novel and admits people he meets often appear in the books, albeit somewhat disguised. "There are people who ask to be put in the books," he said.

The ideas for the plots come from him thinking of the turn of the story and finding an interesting set of circumstances, from which he then expands it by finding the characters.

Ian moved to Bishop's Stortford when he secured his first job in Harlow after attending Huddersfield Polytechnic. He has three grown-up children, who all read the books, but he relies mostly on his youngest for feedback.

Likened to Morse author Colin Dexter, naturally Ian would not say no to the books being serialised on TV. He is fond of his leading man but has deliberately left his character open.

"I've never really described any of my characters in too much detail," he said. "I did that deliberately because I wanted the reader to conjure up their own pictures."

So, the suspense of who would play Inspector Carmichael in a TV series is matched by Ian's plots. And for his fans there's more suspense as they eagerly await the next chapter in the series.

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