‘Gil North’s atmospheric writing shows the influence of Simenon, and Gunnarshaw’s finest, Sergeant Caleb Cluff, is a memorable detective – the Maigret of the Dales.’
Martin Edwards, CWA Diamond Dagger winner 2020
and author of Mortmain Hall.
Detective-Sergeant Cluff, from the shadows of a ginnel, watches a young woman weeping in Gunnarshaw’s busy high street – and wonders why. But when a dead body is discovered in a forest plantation, Cluff calls on his extensive knowledge of Gunnarshaw folk, as well as his instinctive perception of human nature, to uncover a trail of fateful and unrequited love.
As the investigation progresses, nothing is as it seems, and as Cluff knows only too well from a lifetime of detective work, when it comes to crimes of passion, there are never any easy answers. Inspector Mole, on the other hand, is certain he has the case all wrapped up – and is determined to prove Cluff wrong.
Gil North’s novels, which follow the investigations of Detective-Sergeant Cluff in the fictional and close-knit moorland market town of Gunnarshaw, were first published in the 1960s.
Gil North was the pen-name of Geoffrey Horne (1916–1988). He was born in Skipton, North Yorkshire, where his father was Town Clerk. Horne was educated at the local grammar school, then studied at Christ’s College, Cambridge, before embarking on a career as a civil servant in Nigeria and Cameroon.
He later returned to pursue his writing ambitions in his native Skipton – the inspiration for Gunnarshaw.