I’m delighted to wish Beverley Jones ‘Happy Publication Day’ on the launch of her latest novel The Beach House. It’s a psychological mystery set in the Pacific Northwest of the USA, specifically Seattle, the Oregon Coast and the city of Portland. Anyone who’s a fan of the 80s movie The Goonies, will instantly recognise the locations.
What’s the story?
The perfect place to hide. Or so she thought . . .
When Grace Jensen returns to her home in the ocean-front town of Lookout Beach one day, she finds a body in a pool of blood and a menacing gift left for her: a knife, a coil of rope and handcuffs.
The community of Lookout Beach are shocked by such a brutal intrusion in their safe, close-knit community – particularly to a family as successful and well-liked as the Jensens – and a police investigation begins to find the trespasser.
But Grace knows who’s after her. She might have changed her name and moved across the world, deciding to hide on the Oregon coast, but she’s been waiting seventeen years for what happened in the small Welsh town where she grew up to catch-up with her.
Grace might seem like the model neighbour and mother, but nobody in Lookout Beach – not even her devoted husband Elias – knows the real her. Or how much blood is on her hands.
(Image by DiscoverWithDima, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=86576714)
Looking at that cover I’m imagining Cannon Beach, on the Oregon coast. It’s a quiet, small beautiful town, famed for it’s rugged natural beauty. It’s wild and windswept with miles of pristine sandy beaches. With a population of c2000 it would certainly fit the bill as a safe close-knit community. It’s certainly a place worth crossing the world for.
As well as it’s enticing beaches, it has Haystack Rock, a monolithic outcrop created by lava flows from the Blue Mountains and Columbia basin about 15-16 million years ago. It’s adjacent to the beach and accessible by foot at low tide. Look down and it’s a great place to go rock pooling as it’s home to a variety of intertidal marine life such as starfish, sea anemone, crabs, chitons, and limpets. Look up and it’s a nesting site for terns and tufted puffins.
Downtown there’s a variety of boutique and artisan shops and restaurants with no chain stores or fast food outlets to spoil the ‘small town feel’ – or the local economy.
I’m sure Grace Jensen would find this idyllic, just a pity that somebody wants to spoil it. I think I need to find out what’s she’s done and just how much blood she does have on her hands.
About the Author
Bev was born in a small village in the South Wales valleys, north of Cardiff. She started her journalism career with Trinity Mirror newspapers, writing stories for The Rhondda Leader and The Western Mail, before becoming a broadcast journalist with BBC Wales Today TV news, based in Cardiff.
She has worked on all aspects of crime reporting (as well as community news and features) producing stories and content for newspapers and live TV.
Most recently Bev worked as a press officer for South Wales Police, dealing with the media and participating in criminal investigations, security operations and emergency planning.
Perhaps unsurprisingly she channels these experiences of ‘true crime,’ and her insight into the murkier side of human nature, into her dark, psychological thrillers set in and around South Wales.
Her latest novels, Where She Went, Halfway and Wilderness, are published by Little Brown under the name BE Jones. Wilderness has recently been optioned for a six part TV adaptation by Firebird Pictures. Her seventh novel, The Beach House, is due for release in June 2021 under the name Beverley Jones.