Published: 28/02/2017
ISBN: 9781785898372
eISBN: 9781788038249
Format: Paperback/eBook

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Shake Hands or Die
by Michael Northey

Available now!

“Father John was friendly during the services. He had no problem in greeting people during the Peace, where people wander about mid-service saying hello, peace, waving, some greeting others with a chaste hug, in general recognition of being one big family. He had a nice smile. Only he never stood at the church door after service to shake hands or say goodbye...”

Wacky new vicar Father John aims to modernise St Martha’s church in the delightful city of Hillford. People love his fun gimmicks but cannot understand why he will not ever shake hands at the end of service. Even the charming archdeacon, Babs, cannot get him to change his mind. Until one day, the reason becomes crystal clear.

Ambitious journalist Fred Vestal, on loan from a London tabloid, is trying to shake up the sleepy local paper. He turns up to a service at St Martha’s and sees an uninhibited children’s play. After getting a sniff of a story, he interviews the vicar and writes a vicious article, labelling Father John as a public menace.

When they next meet, Father John refuses to shake hands with Fred. Soon afterwards a body is found in a pile of compost in the churchyard. The little cathedral city of Hillford, where even the police seem off-beat, looks for an answer...

Shake Hands or Die is a cosy crime novel, with humour, elements of farce and a cast of vivid and fun characters. However, there are also deep underlying questions and some lyrical poignancy. It will appeal to fans of authors such as Alexander McCall Smith and Simon Brett.

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Breakaway Reviewers

That's Books

Church Times

Female First

Very interesting story with excellent characters. Neat little twist at the end. Well worth a read.

by Nigel Greaves

A murder mystery with humour and pathos alongside totally fabulous characters. I really enjoyed this book, it is a breath of fresh air amongst the staleness of its genre.
More please Michael.

by Helen Line


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