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  • Location: London

The Lighterman

The Lighterman

Why a Booktrail?

1960s: When the London underworld is gunning for you, where do you run?

  • ISBN: 978-1911583004
  • Genre: Hitman/Gangster, legal/political

What you need to know before your trail

Criminal barrister Charles Holborne is a complex and troubled  man. Already the enemy of many during books The Brief and An Honest Man, now he’s back much to the chagrin of criminals of London’s underworld. Gangland leader Ronnie Kray is not a man to forgive or forget. Holborne has ‘taken liberties’ and revenge will follow. But how to get at a tough and resourceful Brief with his own history of criminality and a penchant for violence? The answer: find a man who can’t be hanged twice. Now Holborne must dig up the secrets of the past to save two lives … one of them his own.

Travel Guide

London 1960s – Interview with the author


This was a very unique time in the capital’s history – some very iconic figures of the criminal underworld were roaming the streets. The Kray twins are infamous for much of the crime and violence of the time as is another famous face or two….

This is the London where the legal machinations turn – the Old Bailey is a symbol of justice for some and injustice for others. A criminal barrister with a past he’d fight tooth and nail to hide and one which starts to reveal itself and his character.

The Thames is a character in its own right as are the many islands and bridges along the way – it’s like chapters in the city’s history as well as in this book.

Even before that London comes to life, the London of the Blitz is evoked on the page. The bombs, the fear and the grey shadows of doubt come to the fore with the history of the Horowitz family and the reality of bombing shelters frighteningly apparent. His Jewish roots, the way Jews everywhere had to change their identities and backgrounds to avoid suspicion…

And the lighterman sails between these episodes in history…

Trail Gallery

Booktrailer Review

Susan: @thebooktrailer

I didn’t know what a lighterman was but this book intrigued me for several reasons.  The cover was very sparse and James Bond style in appearance but what I got was a very neat and layered thriller.

Charles, the central character has a very interesting and moving backstory which will make me go and read the other books in the series right away. This novel,with strands in ww2 and 1960s made for a cinematic effect and multilayered narrative. Charles works on one side of the law but straddles the thin line at times – in a London where the Kray twins roam. The sense of time and place more than moors you to the story and it bristles with tension and fear.

It was more than interesting to find out about the industry of the lightermen and their role in the city’s history. There’s a lot to this novel but it never gets in the way of the story and the intrigue.


Booktrail Boarding Pass: The Lighterman

Author/Guide Simon Michael   Destination: London  Departure Time: ww2, 1960s

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