A novella spin-off from the DCI Greg Geldard series from prize winning author, Heather Peck
Much to Greg’s amusement, his friends Ben and Paula embark on a river cruise for their second honeymoon. Relaxation and luxury are guaranteed; and evil in an unexpected place.
First Responder Ben Asheton and his wife Paula find them- selves dealing with a range of issues including bullying, coercive control and the safeguarding of vulnerable adults. But how to tell who is vulnerable?
Set on a luxury river cruise on the Rhine, the story evokes the grand old age of murder mysteries, with a modern twist.
…….enjoy the glorious sights of the Upper Rhine and the Moselle from the luxury of your private balcony….
What could possibly go wrong?
Ben and Paula Asheton are embarking on a river cruise it’s a gift for a second honeymoon. Even though Ben has been on the end of his mates amused comments he and Paula are looking forward to a relaxing and enjoyable time together.
There is quite an array of characters on board. The more experienced cruisers are not surprised and warn Ben and Paula that they may well want to avoid some of their fellow cruisers! They soon understand why as they join various groups for meals and activities.
One morning only a couple of days into the holiday Ben is sitting out on the balcony of their room when he hears a commotion. Ben works as a first responder so quickly gets dressed and goes to see if there is anything he can do.
As he gets on deck he finds that the body of a passenger has been found. Once he realises nothing can be done his experience as an ex-Policeman kicks in and he ensures that the area is kept undisturbed and that the Captain calls the incident into the police. Ben believes that this is no accident. Richard Bentham, the dead passenger, was travelling alone. He had been quite a vocal critic of some things on the cruise but surely it wasn’t enough to attract an attack?
Within a short time another passenger is reported missing! This is turning into something of a busman’s holiday for Ben and for Paula too as she is called to help with Gwen, the missing mans wife. Gwen is adamant that her husband, Gwyn, must still be on the boat but a thorough search finds no trace of him.
The German police in the form of Detective Muller takes on the investigation. Ben continues to assist in an unobtrusive way gathering some very useful information and Detective Muller seems content with his role occasionally calling upon both his and Paula’s help.
This is a short read at 77 pages but it has everything that is required to make it enjoyable. It kept up a good pace as we followed Ben in his investigation and came to a satisfactory conclusion. Muller was a very able detective whose ability enabled him to get the evidence required to make an arrest for not just one murder but two. Nevertheless, it was Richard Bentham’s killing that sent chills through him with regards to the callous murderer.
This short, smooth, easy-to-read novella was a pleasure to read.
Many thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for an invitation to this lovely BlogTour for Death on the Rhine by Heather Peck and to Heather Peck and Oremsby Publishing for an eCopy in order to share my thoughts on Death on the Rhine.
If you’d like to read more about Death on the Rhine why not check out the rest of the BlogTour posts?
Published: in November 2022 by Ormesby Publishing | ISBN 978-1-91576-902-2 (paperback) | ISBN 978-1-91576-903-9 (ebook) | 77 pages
Buy: Available to order from The author’s The author’s website and for free short stories, unpublished chapters etc, sign up for the monthly newsletter on the link| or purchase from AmazonSmileUK (paperback £2.99 | eBook £1.99| free on kindle unlimited)
Author: Heather Peck has had a life of two halves. In the first she was both farmer and agricultural policy adviser. She bred sheep and alpacas, reared calves, broke ploughs, represented the UK in international negotiations, specialised in emergency response from Chernobyl to bird flu, managed controls over pesticides and GM crops, saw legislation through parliament and got paid to eat KitKats while on secondment to Rowntree. In the second half Peck chaired an NHS Trust, worked on animal welfare, sailed a boat on the Norfolk Broads, volunteered in Citizens Advice and the Witness Service and vaccinated humans against Covid. Two golden threads have run through everything, her fascination with words and her Gran’s wise advice: ‘You can do anything if you try hard enough.’ She writes about the countryside and the animals she loves, the industry (farming) she holds in deepest respect, and issues she is passionate about. Peck’s main protagonist has grown with each story and his life has changed in ways she couldn’t have predicted at the start. She’d like to meet him.
DCI GREG GELDARD SERIES
Secret Places | Glass Arrows* | Fires of Hate
*shortlisted for the East Anglian Book Awards prize for fiction 2021
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