Novel idea from Caol crime writer

The Oban Times - - NEWS - By Mark En­twistle men­[email protected]­

From Brave­heart to Harry Pot­ter, the West High­lands has pro­vided the back­drop for some of Hol­ly­wood’s big­gest block­buster movies.

And now a Fort Wil­liamborn writer is hop­ing to tap into that pop­u­lar­ity with a new se­ries of crime nov­els set in Lochaber.

Ful­ton Ross’s de­but novel The Un­for­given Dead fo­cuses on An­gus ‘Dubh’ McNeil, a po­lice­man from Glenuig who is in­ves­ti­gat­ing a se­ries of mur­ders that echo macabre High­land folk tales.

‘The West High­lands is a gift for crime writ­ers,’ said the 39-year-old.

‘All those misty brood­ing land­scapes are the per­fect set­tings for dark deeds.’

Hav­ing pre­vi­ously writ­ten two nov­els set in Glas­gow, the former Lochaber High School pupil, who grew up in Caol, felt it was time for a change of scenery.

The book it­self was at least 12 months in the writ­ing and jour­nal­ist Ross de­scribes it as ‘Stephen King meets Ian Rankin’.

‘My main char­ac­ter, An­gus, is a trou­bled cop who has the du­bi­ous gift of sec­ond sight, a phe­nom­e­non that many in the West High­lands will be fa­mil­iar with,’ he said.

Ear­lier this year, Ross’ novel was a nom­i­nee in lit­er­ary agency AM Heath’s De­viant Minds Crime and Thriller com­pe­ti­tion.

Now, The Un­for­given Dead is en­tered in Inkshares’ Mys­tery and Thriller con­test, with the win­ning nov­els be­ing pub­lished by the Cal­i­for­nian com­pany.

‘The com­pe­ti­tion runs un­til De­cem­ber 14 and the win­ning nov­els are those with the most pre-or­ders by that date,’ Ross ex­plained.

‘I’m ask­ing High­land book lovers to get be­hind the novel and help me get it pub­lished.

‘Any­one in­ter­ested can go to the Inkshares web­site, where they can read sam­ple chap­ters. Fingers crossed, they’ll like what they read and pre-or­der a copy.’

Ross now lives in County Ty­rone, North­ern Ire­land, with his wife and three young chil­dren and is work­ing on a fol­low up to The Un­for­given Dead.

‘It’s pro­vi­sion­ally en­ti­tled Shame the Devil,’ he re­vealed.

‘I’m hop­ing to have the first draft com­pleted by early next year.

‘It ba­si­cally picks up where The Un­for­given Dead left off and con­tains a sim­i­lar blend of ac­tion, in­trigue and mur­der. I’m re­ally ex­cited about it.’ To read sam­ple chap­ters of The Un­for­given Dead and pre-or­der a copy visit books/the-un­for­given-dead

Fort Wil­liam-born writer Ful­ton Ross, right, hopes Lochaber read­ers will pre-or­der his new novel and help him win a pub­lish­ing deal.

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