The criminal underworld of the island and an embittered detective provides the setting for the latest book series by a UK writer.
Set in the present day Isle of Man, against the backdrop of murderous drug gangs, ‘Fall of Man’ was released earlier this month by author Paul Forster.
The book begins with the central character, Detective Sergeant Jim Walsh, waking up next to the body of a murdered girl.
Jim is a once brilliant detective who has a tendency to drink far too much, although what he sees as an innocent habit is about to cause him some serious problems.
He begins to investigate those who are trying to bring him down, whilst stay one step ahead of his colleagues, who are trying to arrest him on suspicion of murder.
The complex and taut crime thriller is Paul’s third book, and will be the first in a three-part book series, with each one firmly based on the Isle of Man.
Born in Kent and currently living in West Sussex, Paul spent a great deal of his childhood and school summer holidays on the Isle of Man.
He said that he always wanted to write a book set around the island, and thought that the place would be an ideal setting for a crime thriller.
‘My first two books were zombie horror books, Dead Weight and The Last Bite,’ said Paul.
‘One thing I never wanted to do was to repeat myself and get bogged down with repeating stories and plots.
‘I wanted my next book to have something more meaty, and have more legs about it, with a plot and scenarios you could really sink your teeth into.
‘I decided that I would set it in the Isle of Man, as it is a place I am very familiar with, and very fond of.
‘There are so many varied locations you can use that are familiar enough, and perfect for a thriller like this, but would be almost unknown to people who would not known anything about the Isle of Man.
‘The locations and scenery here is so varied, that the action can easily move from towns to the countryside, or up hills and onto the coastline in a very believable way.
‘Also, the Isle of Man is full of incredible characters. I have never come to the island and not found somebody interesting or colourful to talk to.
‘That helped me create my characters.’
Paul wrote ‘Fall of Man’ partly as an affectionate nod to his late father, who lived and worked on the island.
‘Myself and my brother spent so much of time here as children, coming over here during summer holidays,’ he said.
‘I still come back here and visit whenever I can.
‘Also, my father was a big fan of crime thriller stories and shows and I really enjoyed using the island that I know as the setting for the book, and also to pay a tribute to may father too.’
Paul said that, since the release of the book, he has received a lot of comments on social media that the crime level on the island isn’t anything like depicted in his book.
‘I did have a few comments saying things like “is he investigating milk bottle thefts?” and things like that,’ said Paul.
‘But that’s the point of crime fiction, isn’t it? Its not supposed to be obvious. You can have any crime set anywhere, and it is up to the writer to make it credible.’