David Hutchison The Book of Skulls Blog Tour



David Hutchison was brought up in the Scottish Highlands. He worked for many years as a fisherman, crofter, DJ and self-taught artist.

His children’s book Storm Hags was shortlisted for the Kelpie Prize. He’s had several short stories published in anthologies (New Writing Scotland, Read By Dawn) and on BBC radio. He is also a filmmaker. He wrote and directed the sci-fi feature Graders, and comedy/meta-horror Baobhan Sith. 

He has just completed The Book of Skulls, a BAME and LBQT story of hidden identity and murder, inspired by Edinburgh’s murky medical history.

Last year he put on the exhibition Medical Inspirations, celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Edinburgh Seven; the first group of women to matriculate at a British university.

He is currently working on Kore, a supernatural novel where a bank clerk is contacted through her new hearing aid by her dead girlfriend. He also teaches a class in scriptwriting and is hoping to do some online class in the autumn.

A Victorian tale of gender-bending, hidden identity, obsession and gruesome murder, set in Edinburgh’s Old Town.

1875. Liz Moliette; a poor orphan of unknown heritage, and Amulya Patel; from a wealthy Indian family, are the only female students at the Edinburgh Medical School, where a hostile attitude towards women is driven by Professor Atticus. However, Liz and Amulya have allies in fellow student Campbell Preeble, The Reekie reporter Hector Findlay and the charming Dr Paul Love.

In dire need of funds, Liz becomes assistant to gruff lecturer and police surgeon Dr Florian Blyth.  When a series of grisly murders take place the doctor and Liz help Inspector Macleod in his investigation, which leads to the Edinburgh Asylum, the  Burry Man festival and the quack science of phrenology.  

The search for the killer comes dangerously close to Liz as she uncovers her own family secrets.

Exclusive Excerpt from The Book of Skulls

Port of Leith, Edinburgh, 1875.

The seaman’s mission was a rather dilapidated building, situated next to Leith Docks. In the temporary examination room at the back, stood stocky French sailor Henri Blanc, trousers at his

knees. He rubbed a shiny bump on his shaved head: a nervous habit.

The youthful Dr Paul Love completed his examination and shrugged. “You can pull your breeks up!” The doctor washed his hands in a porcelain basin.

Docteur?”

The doctor dried his hands on a towel and gave Henri his best reassuring smile. “All clear.”

Eh bien. I thought the scab… I was with a putain in London,” said Henri.

The doctor shook his head and said, “Sometimes a scab is just a scab.”

“Dieu merci!”

“Hold on!” The doctor opened up his medical bag and took out a small bottle of greenish liquid. “Here.”

Henri read the label. “Rose’s lime juice. Do I rub it in?”

The doctor laughed. “God no! Just drink it. Vitamin C. It will help your skin.”

Henri smiled and nodded. He took out his small leather fisherman’s purse.

The doctor shook his head. “No it’s fine. The company sends me free samples.”

Henri grinned. “Merci beaucoup.”

A few minutes later Henri left the mission, and with a happy gait crossed over the Victoria Bridge. He stopped to watch a swan as it rippled through the reflection of the setting sun, bathing Leith Docks in a bloody glow. La vie est belle! He turned down the quayside and headed for The Sandport Bar.

The bar was chockablock with early evening customers, chattering and laughing over the musical scratchings of a pair of old bodachs, fiddling in a corner. Henri shoved his way up to the bar counter and ordered a drink.

To buy The Book of Skulls

Website http://www.davidhutchison.info

Twitter @davidwhutchison

Instagram @davidwhutchison

Amazon Author Page

Dugald Bruce Lockhart The Lizard Blog Tour

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Dugald Bruce Lockhart is an Anglo-Scottish stage and screen actor who now also works as a director. He began as a stage actor, working with the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre and others. Since 1998, he has acted mostly with Propeller, an all-male theatre company of which he is now an associate director. He is also an associate of the Teatre Akadèmia Theatre Company in Barcelona and has directed Romeo and Juliet and As You Like It in Catalan, using new translations by Miqel Desclot. He teaches and directs at drama schools in London, including the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, LAMDA, and the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts.

He played David Cameron in The Three Lions, a comedy written by William Gaminara, a role for which he was nominated as best actor by The Stage at the Edinburgh Festival of 2013. Lockhart returned to the role when the play was later staged at the St James Theatre, London, in 2015, and stayed with the production when it moved on to the Liverpool Playhouse.

He is the author of a handbook for actors called Heavy Pencil, which is available on Amazon. The Lizard is his debut fiction novel.

An Exclusive Look Written By Dugald Bruce Lockhart into the Inspiration behind The Lizard 

The Lizard is inspired by a trip I took to Greece in 1988 while studying at St Andrews University in Scotland. I had no idea I’d end up using it as the basis for a novel – I went in search of a tan and enlightenment; to ditch academia for the hunter-gatherer existence. I wasn’t to know I’d end up being chased off the island by the police; that I’d suffer two years of flashbacks having OD’d on hydrochloric-acid-based diet pills (Ponderols: you were supposed to take one a week, but I popped five in one go, under friendly instruction from the ‘Beatles’ – four teenage bricklayers from Liverpool with more tattoos than hair); or that I’d spend a moonlit night being pursued through the hinterlands of Paros’s capital town, Parikia, by a gang of irate, knife-wielding Turks. Unlikely antics, for a Moral Philosophy and German student whose only experience of drug taking had been limited to soluble aspirin. Truth was, in broadening my horizons, I lost myself, and in three months, I turned feral. The end came when watching Paul – the ringleader of the ‘Beatles’ – jump thirty feet from a departing ferry into the harbour waters in a bid to outrun the authorities. Paul had been caught stealing from his campsite neighbours and the police had caught up. Unfortunately, Paul had also been harbouring my passport as a favour. When the ‘Beatles’ were arrested, I knew I was next. So, I sold my spear gun for the price of a ferry ticket, had a friend extract my passport, and took the first available boat to Athens. I realised on the flight home there might be a story in there somewhere. It just took me thirty years to write it!

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Terrific, atmospheric thriller. Taut, compelling, masterfully constructed. outstanding

William Boyd. I went to Greece to embrace the binary code, to get off the sidelines and become a player. To live in the moment. Or, as Ellie put it, to become my own man. Was I accountable for the horror, that fateful summer? Looking back, it’s easy enough to pinpoint the sliding-door moments where I went wrong. But then, what use is hindsight? As Kierkegaard wrote: ‘Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards’. Cold comfort when you’ve taken another man’s life.

For An Exclusive Reading of The Lizard by Dugald Bruce Lockhart go to https://m.facebook.com/ReadingBetweentheLinesOnlineBookPR/

Amazon Book Link https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B083Z5KNNW/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i0

Author Website https://dugaldbrucelockhart.com

Twitter Link https://twitter.com/DBrucelockhart

Publishers Link https://www.muswell-press.co.uk

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