Line of Sight
Line of Sight by A. C. Koning is the first novel in the 'Blind Detective' series.
London, 1927. An 'unreal city', full of fog, and cigarette smoke, and drifting shadows... Or that's how it seems to Frederick Rowlands, who works as a switchboard operator for a firm of City solicitors. With his sight badly damaged by shrapnel during the First World War, Fred is forced to rely on his other senses to understand what's going on. Being a blind man in a sighted world hasn't been easy, but with the stoicism so characteristic of his generation, he's made a life for himself. Then something happens which threatens to destroy the safe, secure world Fred has established with his wife, Edith, and their young children. A call comes into the office from beautiful socialite, Lady Celia West, and - against his better judgement - Fred finds himself beguiled. Soon, he is 'listening-in' to more and more of Celia's calls to her lover, Gerald Willoughby - who is also Fred's boss, and former commanding officer. The illicit nature of what Fred is doing - and the fact that the calls are themselves clandestine - only adds to the excitement of being, however briefly, caught up in a more elegant and sophisticated world. Then a man is murdered, and things grow very much darker. Will Fred confess what he has overheard to the police - or will he risk everything, to protect the woman he loves... Line of Sight is the first in a proposed series of detective stories set in late 1920s London and featuring Frederick Rowlands, the 'Blind Detective'. With shades of Hitchcock and overtones of Chandler, this is a story about secrets and lies, and about the way that the past can compromise the present. Employing the mechanisms of the classic detective story, it portrays a society deeply damaged by war, in which all certainties have been lost and nothing is as it seems.
Praise for Line of Sight.
‘Compulsively readable.’ Heat magazine
‘Beautifully envisioned… and with great attention to period detail, Koning has wholly captured the flavour of the era.’ The Lady
A. C. Koning is better known as Christina Koning. She has worked as a journalist, reviewing fiction for The Times, and has taught creative writing at the universities of Oxford, Cambridge, and London. From 2013 to 2015, she was Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Newnham College, Cambridge. She was also a judge for the Society of Authors’ McKitterick Prize, and her short stories have been read on BBC Radio 4.
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