It’s time for another ‘Meet the Characters’ post and this week Merryn Allingham is interviewing her character Nancy Tremayne from Venetian Vendetta, the latest book in the Tremayne Mystery series,
Let’s find out a bit about the book.
A terrible accident—or the murder of someone keeping dangerous secrets?
The music soars. The opera reaches its finale. And a woman falls to her death.
Newlywed Nancy Tremayne is a shocked witness to the tragedy at La Fenice. How could it have happened and what could lie behind such a terrible death?
Nancy is accompanying her new husband, art professor Leo, on a work trip to Venice, a celebration, too, of their whirlwind romance. Leo is adamant the death is an accident. The police suspect suicide. But Nancy has spoken to the dead woman only hours before her death and feels increasingly compelled to uncover the mystery surrounding the fall.
As she explores the beauty of Venice, helped reluctantly by Leo’s assistant, Archie, she finds herself caught in a thrilling roller coaster of suspense, plunging more and more deeply into the city’s secrets. Together, they discover a Venice as sinister as it is beautiful.
Determined to reveal the evil she suspects, Nancy walks ever closer to danger. Until she realises she may be forced to make a choice – the truth or her life?
This is an intriguing historical mystery, and the protagonist is so complex and interesting, and the mystery so well done that you’ll find yourself trapped between the pages.
A breath of fresh air. And it isn’t only because the author describes Venice really well. Yes, there is that, but we also have here a wonderfully strong heroine who continues to be true to herself even through setbacks… I’d strongly recommend this book.
A brilliant gripping story which captures the reader from the very first page.
Not only does the city of Venice present romance and intrigue, it proves to be the perfect backdrop for the mystery, what with its long canals of water, the danger of flooding, the isolated islands, and the fog that comes with being by the sea… A delightful mystery.
Another beautifully written book by this author – the characters were great and the story so well thought out.
Now let’s move onto Merryn’s interview with Nancy Tremayne.
Merryn: It’s good to be talking at last, Nancy. I’ve been hoping to meet you face-to-face for a long time—I’ve been so impressed by your determination and sheer guts. Until I met you on the page, I confess I thought of most 1950s women as secretaries waiting to get married or housewives desperate to escape their home. But you proved me wrong!
Nancy: Neither was for me. I wanted a life I’d chosen—one free of petty rules and where I could follow my love of art. I had to fight to get it, though.
Merryn: The battle involved you moving to London at a very young age, I know. I imagine that caused some raised eyebrows in your Hampshire village.
Nancy: More than raised eybrows—an awful lot of gossip and some very bad arguments with my parents. Girls in the 1950s just didn’t live away from home and to go to London, a sinful place, if ever there was! Then to find my own accommodation, even though it was a poky one room bedsitter, and begin a career…that was revolutionary.
Merryn: None of it came easily, I imagine.
Nancy: I loved the job I landed, but it was soon made plain that I wouldn’t be climbing too far up the ladder. In an art auctioneers at the time, unless you’d been privately educated and had an Oxbridge degree, you weren’t likely to make it further than the lowest rungs, particularly if you were female. But Abingers was where I wanted to be, and I’d made a good life for myself until…
Merryn: Until you met the love of your life, I take it?
Nancy: At least, that’s what I thought, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. It didn’t take long before I realised I was powerless against a man determined to destroy me and I was plunged into a deadly fight. In an odd way, the experience was positive. It made me passionate about fighting for others who were as powerless as me.
Merryn: The desire to bring criminals to book explains the adventures you fell into around the world—Venice, the Caribbean, Cornwall, Rio—all of it, after your marriage. Which turned out to be an adventure in itself, didn’t it?
Nancy: And not one I should ever have ventured into—falling in love with Archie, my husband’s assistant, hours after I married—wasn’t the smartest thing I could have done—but at the time becoming Leo Tremayne’s wife seemed the only way I could survive. We did some good things together, Archie and I, unearthing the guilty when the police lacked interest, ensuring victims gained a justice they would otherwise be denied. And, of course, falling more deeply in love all the time.
Merryn: You’ve certainly had an exciting few years, but what of the future?
Nancy: I may give the adventures a rest, though I still have one left—the real love of my life is out there waiting for me and, this time, I’m ready!
Merryn Allingham was born into an army family and spent her childhood moving around the UK and abroad. Unsurprisingly it gave her itchy feet and in her twenties she escaped from an unloved secretarial career to work as cabin crew and see the world.
She still loves to travel and visit new places, especially those with an interesting history, but the arrival of marriage, children and cats meant a more settled life in the south of England, where she’s lived ever since. It also gave her the opportunity to go back to ‘school’ and eventually teach at university.
She has written in a variety of genres: Regency romances, several timeslips plus a number of historical novels set in the early 20th century, sometimes in exotic locations and often against a background of stirring events, such as the two world wars. Her most recent books are the Tremayne Mysteries series featuring crime and mystery/suspense with a dash of romance.
You can contact Merryn here:
Thanks so much for dropping by to talk to us, Merryn. I hope your book soars!
Karen King – Writing about the light and dark of relationships.
Amazon Author Page: https://tinyurl.com/y2q5audb