Netherhall GardensCarl Patrick

Netherhall Gardens

Netherhall Gardens is a street in Hampstead linking (via some steep steps) the Finchley Road to Fitzjohn’s Avenue. Netherhall itself was originally the Manor house and survived intact up until the early sixties when it was converted into thirteen bed-sits and flats. A rich variety of interesting characters live in the house quite happily minding their own business until one evening in early May one of them has a friend over for supper and things are never quite the same again…

The Main Characters in Book 1

Mark Carter – a 23 year old trainee Chartered Accountant with a firm in London’s West End. Intelligent, innocent and naive with blond hair, blue eyes, athletic build and a clean-shaven handsome face. Recently ended a long-term relationship with his girlfriend and thinks he might be gay. Mark has clear ideas about civil rights, being non-judgemental and true to his friends. Open-minded and willing to try anything at least once, he’s the unwitting catalyst to a series of life-changing events both for himself and the residents of Netherhall.

Stella Roberts – a 25 year old petite blonde Scottish bombshell with strong opinions and morals who ran away to the gold-paved streets of London at the age of 16. Her elder half-sister, Iris, is the only link she has with the past, though that is about to change drastically. Stella now works as a barmaid at the Hollybush in Hampstead, which is where she first met Mark. A strong bond of friendship exists between the two, hanging just inside the platonic rim. Stella already has a very tempestuous, highly sexed, but loving relationship with her dream-man Hugh - but is he a dream or a nightmare?

Hugh McDonald – a 38 year old Scotsman with a law degree and a rampant sex-drive. He works freelance for a number of law Journals and also teaches law to juvenile delinquents. The quiet type and, true to form, with more skeletons in his cupboard than a palaeontologist - except these old bones are far from dead.

PC Steve Evans – a 28 year old plain clothes detective in the Homicide & Serious Crime Command of the Metropolitan Police Force. Tall, broad-shouldered, extremely fit, with a dark-blond goatee, he has a keen sense of humour, a sinister jealous side, a bit of a sadistic streak and lives life on the edge. A chem-friendly out-gay man with a keen interest in leather and kink and pushing back the barriers.

Laura Bowles – a 46 year old eccentric American who earns her living teaching the flute and running an escort agency on the side. With an expired Visa and an illegal escort business, she’s terrified when the police start knocking on her door. Famous for her outrageous parties, Laura lives in a self-contained flat in the basement of Netherhall with her own secluded garden and an enigmatic tomcat named Freud, who thinks a lot but says very little.

Peter (Pierre) Morgan – a 24 year old ‘mature’ student, constantly stoned, who studies French by day at Camden College and acts as an escort by night, managed of course by Laura. Sexy, fit, quite harmless and easily led astray, he seems a perfect match for the kinky Germans.

Glen Stevens – a 22 year old hugely muscular, tall and constantly horny security guard at Waitrose supermarket on the Finchley Road. His heart is in the right place, but his brain is in his pants, along with a number of other things. Like a bloodhound onto a scent, he’s relentless when pursuing his prey.

Patrick Fitzgerald – an 18 year old spoilt gay playboy who Laura has been teaching to play the flute since he was 9. Rarely takes no for an answer, smokes too much and turns up when least expected. His boyfriend, appropriately named Gerald Fitzpatrick, is soon forgotten when Patrick first meets Mark. Will Mark be able to resist his charms and affluent lifestyle?

Morag Roberts – Stella’s mother and a tough small-town, strictly catholic, narrow-minded, plain-talking woman with a broad-Scots accent. In her late fifties, she descends upon them all after winning an undisclosed sum on the national lottery. Will her sharp tongue prove too much for Stella and her friends?

Iris Roberts – Stella’s half-sister, in her early thirties, and a forensic social-worker who spends much of her time keeping the peace between her mother and Stella whilst worrying that Stella is falling too deeply in love with a man far too old for her, but just about the right age for herself. Will she try to steal Stella’s man or will somebody else beat her to it?

Fanny Rosenberg – Laura’s elderly Jewish neighbour who keeps a close eye on the funny comings and goings and is not afraid to voice her thoughts, however unwelcome and incoherent they might be.

The Serial Killer – a compulsive and elusive serial killer of handsome young men, in search of the perfect victim and about to strike for the fourth time in Central London. Will this craving for perfection be finally satisfied or must the killing continue…?

ISBN 978-1906510-633 | Cover design by Al Knight | Published by Troubador Publishers