The Unwanted bookcover
Having watched the furore regarding the death of the UK’s ex-prime minister, as a writer I have been fascinated to see how this figure’s reputation has morphed into something which would have shocked many if they had been able to take a glimpse of the future back in the 1980s.

I have to confess, James McKenna, author, rather than James McKenna curious citizen, has been mulling over an idea for a future tale using these events as a backdrop. It put me in mind of the television series called The Devil’s Whore when an assassination attempt was being made in 17th century Britain at the time of Crowell’s inauguration/coronation (call it what you will) as Lord Protector.

In fact, there seemed to be so much ill feeling fermented at the time of Margaret Thatcher’s death that I was thinking what a brilliant plot driver this unrest could be. Plenty of opportunities arose to blame acts of violence and general thuggery on protestors, when really other agencies might be at work, as in my new book The Unwanted released in two weeks. With by elections and the assent of UKIP there seems to be a renewal of interest in politics. But how long before lethargic disinterest returns?

The only problem with this train of thought as I finish the very final editing of The Unwanted is that I am already plotting for my next book, Global Raider. Any concrete plot ideas attached to the Thatcher outcry will have to wait, and possibly forever, which is a pity!

Meanwhile life continues, besides eating, breathing, thinking and dreaming crime fiction, this week in Portugal we are still celebrating the welcome return of sunshine. I was beginning to think sunshine hours had been cut, along with everything else that has been slashed by Portugal’s austerity measures.

To turn the focus of my cultural and political microscope and zoom in even further, the grape vines are now in full growth with beautiful lime green leaves unfurling and tiny grapes already clustered, a clear indicator that this year’s vintage preparations are well and truly underway.

Last year we managed to design a brilliant wine label which showed the house and I would so love to paste up bottles with special promotional labels for my new novel but the problem is: who would buy a bottle of wine called The Unwanted? Joke.

Global Raider, about a high tech weapon capable of striking any place on earth wouldn’t really gel with a title such as Murder between the Vine Leaves even though it sounds like a great holiday read. However, after Global Raider I have a plot revolving around bank fraud in club Med. Now that could certainly have some vines. So if you have any ideas regarding crime fiction titles, murder and vineyards I would be fascinated to hear them!

Meanwhile should you wish to buy any of the titles going under the James McKenna brand then you will find copies of The Uncounted and The Unseen crime fiction thrillers on Amazon. And don’t forget out in two weeks, The Unwanted. I have to say if postage wasn’t so prohibitive we would love to send a bottle of wine with every copy sold but we have yet to discover a way of circumventing the costs. Such a shame as it’s a very luscious and complex red wine described as a reserva. A glass or two would lubricate the plot very nicely.

Anyway, back to the James McKenna book factory before a trip to London.