All Columns in Alphabetical Order

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

READ THIS: The Desolate Garden by Danny Kemp

If marrying into the peerage is on your to-do list, you might want to consider what life could be really like! Danny Kemp has weaved a tale of intrigue and drama in "The Desolate Garden" and we are not at all surprised this is going to be a movie as well. We do hope that we'll be on the review list! From family issues to international intrigue involving affairs, politics and people's lives, this book may seem like another lovely story from England but we can assure you it's much more than that. It's written well and you'll be tempted to read it in one sitting.  If you liked House of Cards, and we are talking the UK version not what you might have seen on this side of the pond, you'll love this winner.  However, at the end we felt like what will happen next? We can only hope for a sequel. And thank you Twitter-you are how we found out about this book!

Danny Kemp has a real gem on his hands with his book “The Desolate Garden”. For those who love an intricately told story involving complex plots filled with espionage you are in for a great ride. Kemp is quite skilled at developing characters that engage your mind to the very depth you could not have known exists. The story line thrills you with a chap Harry Patterson who is thrown into a tailspin after his father and brother are mysteriously murdered. Follow his flight into discovering who, why and where. From romance and deception to espionage and mistrust, Kemp beautifully illustrates these emotions. So this is the perfect time to hit the beach or the covers and get wrapped up in a story that will mystify and excite. You will be left more then satisfied and have something great to talk about at your next dinner party!

Summer has just begun, and it is time to decide which books to put on your summer reading list. The Desolate Garden, by Danny Kemp, should definitely make the cut. Open this book, and you will be transported overseas to the exciting city of London. But this isn't the same London you may have visited in the past. Kemp immerses the reader in a spy mystery that will have you biting your nails from cover to cover. I could not put it down from the time I started reading it. The characters are full of life, and the plot is thrilling. It is rare that an author can create such vivid images in the mind. Despite the action and suspense, Kemp manages to throw in a great deal of wry humor as well. This book is one that you won't want to miss out on!

If you're looking for a good, old-fashioned spy novel with plenty of modern twists and turns, then The Desolate Garden is your book! Author Danny Kemp leads his readers on a compelling and intriguing journey, filled with plenty of twists and turns, right from the word, "go." The readers are brought into the story through the eyes of 40-year old Harry Paterson, who is in the employ of the British Secret Service, and whose father has just been murdered. We find him at the renowned Martini Bar at the Dukes Hotel in the St. James section of London, where he is attempting to work his charms on an attractive woman named Judith. She plays along for a bit, but his hopes are quickly quelled when she reveals that she is working for the Home Office, and will be working with him to find his father's murderer. In the pages that follow, the readers are brought into a fascinating world, rife with plot twists, secrets, aliases and more. Harry's family, Earls of Harrogate, have been associated with banking since the year 1342, and in the present day, are the sole administrators of the secretive Bank of St. George. Originally started as a bank to handle to money of the royals and other wealthy people, its purpose was changed in 1945. The head of the bank at that time was Maudlin Peterson (Harry's grandfather). Sensing a decline in the bank's fortunes with the election of a Socialist ruling party, Maudlin called an old friend who was then the head of the Joint Intelligence Committee, and offered the bank's services to the Secret Intelligence Services. The offer was accepted, and the future of the bank secured. Fast forward to eight months before Harry's father's death. Harry's father, Elliot, called Harry in a great amount of distress, saying that while he was going through the old notes of his father, Maudlin, he'd found something "terribly amiss." He believed he'd found evidence that Maudlin was a spy for the Russians, and had siphoned of millions of pounds (in today's currency, billions of pounds) from the accounts, which he'd sent to an address in Leningrad. And eight months after he shared that knowledge with Harry, he was found dead. As Judith questions Harry, he doesn't let on as much as he knows, in hopes of protecting his family name, but it quickly becomes clear that she knows more about his family than he does. The intensity picks up when Harry's youngest brother, Edward, is also found murdered. Together, Harry and Judith must work through the mystery and find the murderer...or Harry may be the next one to go! The Desolate Garden is a thrilling, fascinating read, and a definite "must" for any summer reading list!

Shades of John LeCarre! A spy thriller throwback that whips the genre into shape: The Desolate Garden. The Cold War is revisited, in historical context, as resent day politics track subterfuge after subterfuge. Written by Danny Kemp with a charming English aristocratic voice throughout, this book covers several generations of genteel manipulation. Using an upper class British family as his device, Mr. Kemp tracks a well plotted intrigue. And no, you'll never guess the ending. Convoluted, yes, and complicated. But this is a thinking man's novel, and the word on the street is that the movie is already in the works. Read it now, and get ahead of the pack. You'll enjoy the characters, and you'll love the storyline. Mr. Kemp slips in enough detail to keep any reader engaged. We want to know it all! Plot, sub-plot and every nuance becomes important to the thread. Lord Harry Patterson becomes endearing, whereas in the very beginning, he's a ponce. The lineup of other names is just too much to be believed, as Lord H attempts to unravel the mystery behind why his father and brother have both been assassinated within one short week. We cheer him on, through one family revelation after another, wanting to know more. Might I add, that we would like to see more of Lord Harry. Are you listening, Mr. Kemp?

Once arrested for attempted murder in England, Danny Kemp decided that a career in writing was for him. No different than Nicholas Sparks, Mr. Kemp’s first novel The Desolate Garden was picked up in a snap, and is currently being rendered into a movie. Outside the field of “run-ins with the law Kemp draws on decades of experience, encompassing the Metropolitan Police, the tenancy of three English Public Houses, and the Licensed Taxi Trade in London, as well as being a radio voice-over artist in several radio plays, where he honed his sense of story and pacing. The Desolate Garden is the story of a secret Royal and Ancient Government Bank, established in the fourteenth century, located in London, England, near what would become Queen Anne’s Gate and a stones throw from a more recent edifice, Buckingham Palace. Since its inauguration, only one family has ruled over the Bank; the Paterson’s, Earls of Harrogate, hereditary Lords of the Realm. Down through centuries the Bank’s capital has grown in many surreptitious ways, but upon the election of a Socialist Government in 1945 at the end of the Second World War, the Bank’s chief executive officer, Lord Maudlin Paterson, sensing the winds of change, offers the bank’s services exclusively to the Secret Intelligence Services, a move that ensures the Bank will endure the forces of a Britain fast descending into grasping Socialism. It is now the year 2003. And, Lord Elliot Paterson takes over the custodianship of the Bank and begins the task of converting the Bank’s hand-written ledgers into digital form and discovers in a hidden ledger, dated 1936, a vast quantity of money erased from the accounts. He digs deeper into the mystery, and comes across some initials along with an address in Leningrad, a major port in Stalin’s Soviet Union, in the margins of another ledger. Lord Elliot suspects that his grandfather, Lord Maudlin, was funding a Russia spy but stays silent until in 2012. In his waning days, he telephones his eldest son, Harry, to pass on the fears behind his suspicions.The novel opens with Lord Elliot’s murder when Lord Harry Paterson, forty, single, a dandy living on the Harrogate estate, and long recruited into the secret world after his service in the Army, is summoned to London and must ascend into his family’s true inheritance. Lord Harry meets Judith Meadows, an attractive, but otherwise a stick-figure of a woman, in the world-famous Martini bar at Duke’s Hotel in London’s St James’s. Meadows plays him for the rake that he is before destroying his hopes of bliss when she discloses that she works for the Home Office and is the case officer assigned to unravel the mysterious death of Lord Elliot. As the story unfolds, the relationship between the two, both sexually and intellectually, ricochets back and forth like a train driven by a teenager, stuck in first gear. Lord Harry knows more than he is willing to reveal, and Meadows knows more about his family than Lord Harry does. The Desolate Garden is especially for readers who like a story, largely rendered through dialogue because it was the dialogue that pulled the work off the page and onto a movie set. This political thriller resonates with charm, deft touches of satire, and romantic entanglement and where the promise of rampant sex is a turn of the page away. It is however, a suitable for all ages.

Back to TOP