Purr purrpurr

Well, what do you expect? Being invited to come and talk about history and my books at a bookshop is a bit like inviting a cat to come and sit by a fire with a nice plate of sardines and a side order of catnip. Not much doubt what the answer will be. And that was after I’d been fed blackened catfish for dinner with some delightful book club members. So I happily chuntered on at Aunt Agatha’s Mystery Bookstore in Ann Arbor this evening, taking in Sir Robert Carey’s early life, my experiences while personally researching tall ship sailing for ‘Gloriana’s Torch’ (after one and a half days of puking on a square sail training ship I had a wonderful time) and some four hundred year old gossip. Luckily nobody had warned the owner Robin Agnew that if she let me into her bookstore, I’d be really difficult to get out again and would probably take at least one book with me.

What a great place. And what great fans! I love it when they let me pick their brains to research some of the embryonic books currently bugging me to write them.

Incidentally, has anyone ever thought of putting hotel rooms in bookshops? There are coffee shops in some bookstores, so why not bedrooms? It would save so much effort and you wouldn’t have to chuck me out at closing time.

Mind you, I’m loving where I’m staying tonight as well: the Vitosha Guest Haus has this quiet quirky elegance, old-fashioned style plus hi tech (I’m writing this on their computer) and the most beautiful enormous dog called George. He very politely checked my luggage: perhaps he was looking for my own much smaller dog – Holly the black Labrador. I’m sure he had no designs on my chocolates from Middletown library.

I\’m here!

I\’m at Sallie Blumenauer\’s house being snortled at by her gorgeous little Boston terrier Sophy, using her laptop after some exceedingly nice carrot cake (don\’t you know I\’m a recovering cakeoholic?) We\’ll be off tomorrow doing the East Coast bit of the tour Sallie\’s been organizing. I\’ll be signing books tomorrow at Barnes & Noble in Williamsburg. Do I ever get writer\’s block? Yes, whenever somebody asks me to dedicate a book, my mind goes blank and I can\’t think of anything to write. It\’s very embarassing. I envy the brother of a friend of mine who\’s a cartoonist and just does a really quick sketch so he doesn\’t have to think of anything witty to say.

I\’m off to the States on an author tour organized by the wonderful people at Poisoned Pen Press who have got Carey and Dodd in the saddle again. I\’m hoping I can add my schedule here.


June 20th, Sunday afternoon

PF arrives Washington Dulles International.

June 21, Monday

2.00 pm Book signing – Barnes & Noble, New Town Shops, Williamsburg VA

June 22, Tuesday

7. 00 pm Talk – Meadowdale Branch of the Chesterfield County Public Library, Richmond VA

June 23, Wednesday

6.30 pm Talk – Southeast Anchor Library, Baltimore MD

June 24, Thursday

5.30 pm – Dinner and Signing with book club members at the Blue Tractor, Ann Arbor \\MI

7.00 pm – Signing at Aunt Agatha\’s Mystery Bookstore, 213 S. Fourth Ave,

June 25, Friday

6.30 – Signing – Murder by the Book, 2342 Bissonnet St, Houston, TX

June 26, Saturday

6.30 – 11.00 A Walk on the Wild Side in Mystery. Let\’s Read program. Arizona Biltmore Grand Ballroom.

June 27, Sunday

2.00 – 4.00 pm Mysterious Galaxy, 7051 Clairemont Mesa Blvd, Suite 302 Sand Diego, CA 92106

June 28, Monday

7.00 Signing – M is for Mystery 6 E, Third Ave San Mateo, CA 94401

June 29 – Ms Finney leaves the USA.


Most Recent Work

Right. Updating this is a little more complicated than I fancy doing at this time of night, so this is just a rough list.

The second James Enys book will soon be out in Kindle – PRICED ABOVE RUBIES.

The eighth Sir Robert Carey novel is coming out in the USA in April – with the lovely Poisoned Pen Press. Its title: A CLASH OF SPHERES

Very excitingly, it will also be coming out in the UK in April with the equally lovely Head of Zeus and the same title.

In July Head of Zeus will be publishing the first three Carey books (A FAMINE OF HORSES, A SEASON OF KNIVES and A SURFEIT OF GUNS) in a physical omnibus edition with the title GUNS IN THE NORTH.

And at the moment I’m in the middle of writing another Jack book – JACK AND THE PUPPIES.


Read them, enjoy – and please post your review on Amazon if you like or even persuade two of your friends to buy them as well!

Elizabethan crime series written as P F Chisholm






















Starring the dashing Sir Robert Carey and dour Sergeant Henry Dodd with cameos by scum like William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe.

Available online from Amazon and direct from Poisoned Pen Press.


Lady Grace series





















Tales of a girl-detective who\’s a maid of honour to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth I, commissioned by Random House (age group 8yrs +)

Available online from Amazon.

Jack books








The puppydog\’s tale, told in Doglish by Jack the Labrador (or the Big Yellow Stupid as the Cats call him). Published by HarperCollins and Transworld. Available online from Amazon and direct from Random House.


Elizabethan spy thrillers















Starring ex-soldier David Beckett and quiet Jewish codebreaker Simon Ames.

Firedrake\’s Eye – a plot to kill the Queen at her Accession Day tournament

Unicorn\’s Blood – a hunt for a mysterious book that could destroy the Queen\’s reputation

Gloriana\’s Torch – battling the Spanish Armada and treason at the Queen\’s court.

Available online from Amazon and direct from Macmillan.

Early books
















About Lugh the Harper in 2nd Century Ireland. Out of print, but occasionally available from Amazon.

The Crow Goddess is now newly available in French translation.




Return to Blogspot.

About Patricia Finney

Patricia Finney’s latest news is that she is now a director of Climbing Tree Books and so a publisher in her own right (in partnership with a man who must be known only as The Publisher because he does most of the work).

“Do We Not Bleed”, her latest Elizabethan crime novel has just been published by them on Kindle – a new series starring the ambiguous Elizabethan lawyer and pursuivant, James Enys. Two of her non-fiction books have already come out as ebooks “Writeritis – the novel-writing bug” and “How to Beat Your Son at Computer Games.” Three more ebooks are on the way, including a third Jack book – “Jack and the Ghosts” due out in August!


Patricia Finney has been writing stories since she was seven and a published novelist since she was eighteen. Her first novel “A Shadow of Gulls” – telling the story of an Irish bard involved in the Irish equivalent of the Iliad – had already been published when she went up to Oxford to study History. While she was still in her first year, her book won the David Higham Award for Best First Novel of the year and some fantastic reviews. By then she was also a radio dramatist with the BBC Radio 3’s production of her play The Flood. The play was a bit obscure: it retold the story of the Flood from the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh – in blank verse.

Patricia’s second novel, The Crow Goddess, followed within a year to further acclaim, continuing the story of her Irish bard.

As well as another award-winning radio play (“A Room Full of Mirrors”), she has published fifteen other novels, including three Elizabethan spy thrillers and five Elizabethan crime novels, four childrens’ books set in Elizabethan times and the two earlier Jack books – hilarious stories about Jack the daffy (present-day) Labrador dog and his Pack, written in Doglish.

Her sixteenth book is the first useful poetry book in history – The Poetry Diet (or Why Don\’t We All Just Wear Corsets?) about her disastrous relationship with chocolate – plus some really good chocolate recipes. You can buy The Poetry Diet direct from this website while stocks last.

Her day-job career to date has included stints as a newspaper columnist, medical magazine editor, property empress, hospital administrator, film scriptwriter and entrepreneur. She spent two and a half wonderful years in the south of Spain where she learnt Spanish, a little flamenco dancing and how to drink coffee and cognac at 8.00 in the morning.

Patricia would like you to know that coffee-cognac at 8 am is not always a good idea.

Since then she has been, among several other things, a coffee shop entrepreneur, a chairman of a local Chamber of Commerce and spent one delightful run-up to Christmas in her ideal day-job – selling books at Waterstones,Truro, where she learnt some remarkable things about book sales.

Throughout all this time people have come up to her and asked her if she\’s still writing. To save time, she would like you all to know that if she\’s still breathing and able to move, she\’s still writing. Her most recent book in the Elizabethan crime series starring Sir Robert Carey (under the name of P F Chisholm) is due to come out soon – \”An Air of Treason\”.



Return to Blogposts.


To blog or not to blog – that is the question.

And by opposing, end them…

Whether tis nobler in the mind to suffer

The slings and arrows of outrageous websites

Or to take arms against a sea of bloggers

Anyone who has ever met me/talked to me/heard me rant is probably amazed (and grateful?) that I haven\’t done this before.

Here\’s why I haven\’t:

[Scene: Finney Mansions, aka The Dump. Sound of clattering keyboard.]

Me: OK, OK, here goes. [presses enter]

Laptop: Ptui. Error message w232w.

Me: What? [tries again]

Laptop: Blart. Error message viso09684937. Would you like to report this error?

Me: No, I just want you to work.

Laptop: Well I don\’t feel like it.

Me: So what\’s wrong?

Laptop: [sulky silence]

Me: Come on, darling, where\’s the hurty?

Laptop: [haughty expression on screen]

Me: Come ON, damnit, what\’s wrong? [patiently tries again]

Laptop: Ptui. Error message f897696u.

Me: Look, just tell me what the problem is and I\’ll try and fix it? Did you not like the space in my phone number? [does the whole thing again]

Laptop: [nada] Blart. This application has stalled.

Me: *%^£$&!!! [random button pressing]

Laptop: You\’re horrid and I\’m not doing anything any more.

Me: Aargh, you piece of technocrap, what\’s WRONG?

Laptop: [smugly] Freeze, crash. Nyah nyah nya nyah nyah.

So I\’ve needed to find some brave people (in this case Channel Computing)  who can do the actual work which is worryingly described in \”Blogging for TechnoChallenged Morons\” as \”simple and straightforward\”.

Somebody who doesn\’t shriek at computers and then roam restlessly round the kitchen, hunting and killing defenceless chocolate bars. All I have to do is have fun generating content.

Sorry. I don\’t generate content. I simply excrete words as constantly and nonchalently as a seagull generates guano – which is, may I remind you, excellent fertiliser. So what follows is just my normal brain-guano which might occasionally fertilise a laugh. I hope.

You can also read The Daybooke of Sir Robert Carey, to get a different angle on my latest Elizabethan crime novel A MURDER OF CROWS. I can\’t divulge how I happened to come across these confidential diary entries from the youngest grandson of that famous Other Boleyn Girl, but I can confirm that I\’ve sorted out his spelling.