I’m so pleased you’ve decided to have a look at my latest Jason Davey mystery, Ticket to Ride! If you’re at all familiar with Jason, you’ll know he’s a professional musician and an amateur sleuth, which I think is quite unusual in the crime and mystery genre. He’s also quite different in that he doesn’t actually investigate murders. Although people do end up dead on his watch, his primary interest is finding lost people, lost objects, lost money, that sort of thing.
In my previous novel, Lost Time, Jason was rehearsing to go on tour with his mum’s band, Figgis Green while he was solving the mystery of a young woman who went missing in the 1970s. In Ticket to Ride, Jason’s now actually on tour with the band—while he embarks on a personal quest to solve the mystery of who his maternal grandfather really is. Unfortunately, he also discovers that someone following the tour seems to have a very personal grudge against him—and his mother!
I wrote this book for you because I wanted to share my love of family tree research, my ongoing interest in gargoyles and ghosts and fortune-tellers and guardian angels, my sense of fun when it comes to inventing a completely fictitious folky-pop band and sending them out on the road on a tour bus, and finally, my enthusiasm for Jason. He’s a very cool character with a dry sense of humor and a lot of vulnerabilities.
Jason didn’t actually start out intending to be an amateur sleuth! He started out as an entertainer on board a cruise ship, in a novel I wrote in 2012 called Cold Play. It wasn’t really a crime novel—at least, I didn’t write it as such—and I thought it would just be a one-off story. I went on to write three time travel novels with different characters, and then in 2017, my publisher suggested that I tackle mystery-writing and perhaps consider bringing Jason back in a very different role.
I came up with a story called Disturbing the Peace, which started out in England and ended up in northern Canada in the depths of a very cold winter as Jason tracked down a musician who seemed to have dropped off the face of the earth.
I discovered I was quite good at writing mysteries and that I really enjoyed it and, most of all, I was really comfortable inhabiting Jason’s persona once again.
The next book I wrote was Notes on a Missing G-String. It’s a clever title that people love, and it really came about as a joke with my publisher. The title stuck, and I wrote a story around it. I keep having to assure my readers it isn’t porn, even though it does involve a real missing G-string and some money stolen from a stripper’s locker.
After that came Lost Time, where Jason takes a leave of absence from his gig at the Blue Devil Club in Soho, and relocates to England’s south coast to begin rehearsals for a tour involving his mum’s old band. As usual, there’s a mystery to solve, and I had wonderful fun inventing original songs, reimagining real songs, and coming up with all kinds of band conflicts, issues and arguments.
And so, finally, here we are with Ticket to Ride. The band is on the road—and someone with a grudge really isn’t happy about that.
Brian Richardson (my publisher) and I have created a rather clever Figgis Green website which gives you the look and feel of a real touring band to go along with Ticket to Ride, the novel. Please do drop by and visit:
Out of all the characters I’ve ever created, Jason Davey is my all-time favorite. I really hope he becomes one of your favorites too! And I hope you enjoy the ride!