Second Acts

Second Acts - author's note: 
Second Acts - my first novel - is ambitious in its sweep and content. The protagonist, the faded celebrity journalist Jon Flight, is damaged goods; a victim of his own success and excesses. Equally, Serge Ghilene, the diminutive Corsican criminal, is a hostage to his own proclivities. In the process of telling a gripping  crime story I wanted to explore how two completely different men from profoundly differing worlds could interact, despite their meeting only twice. I also wanted to try to humanize Ghilene - to transform him from a two dimensional central casting baddy into a real person - someone who, like Shylock, bleeds when he's pricked, laughs when he's tickled. The drama of the two men is played out against a backdrop of narcotics addiction, sexual excess and, relevantly, the hideousness of human trafficking and illegal immigration. In the process of his quest for redemption Jonathon Flight falls for the lovely widow, Anela and it is their love story that leavens the tough, often brutal narrative.


Second Acts
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Second Acts - a synopsis
Two apparently random and unconnected murders sets the narrative in motion.
   Jonathon Flight life, defined by his meteoric media career, has crashed due to his love of booze and drugs. Conversely, Spartan-like criminal enforcer, Serge Ghilene, seems to be at the top of his game. Hitherto unknown to each other, a chance remark and a corpse in Rye's picturesque harbour sets the two men on a dramatic and violently convergent path.
   Unemployable on London's 'Fleet Street' Flight's downward spiral sees his humiliating return as a hack on the local newspaper where his career began.   Desperate to re-ignite his career he decides to take on the criminal Ghilene, despite the latter's dire warnings to the contrary.
   Meanwhile, Ghilene sets about his tasks for his employer - the imprisoned mister big, Orlando Rivett. However a succession of uncharacteristic mistakes by Ghilene sets the pair against each other and Ghilene becomes the hunted. Wrongly blaming Flight for his problems he seeks out Flight's wealthy brother in law - a drug dealer to the county class - with whom he intends to lay low while plotting Flight's demise and his own disappearance.
   Despite their different trajectories the two men unwittingly begin to seek their respective redemptions but fate has a course set for them when they'll meet again and scores will be settled. 
   Set on Kent atmospheric Dungeness and New Romney Marshes, in Scotland, London and East Anglia, Second Acts uncompromising, yet thoughtful, narrative is played out against a background of narcotics addicition, trafficking, illegal immigration and the media business. For those prepared to peek, Second Acts provides a window into a world of drugs, casual violence and murder, where, remarkably, love and redemption are still craved.