The series so far
I have to be honest, Andorra Pett is my favourite character. She has been ever since I first met her. Back then, she was overdressed and striding down an alleyway on a space station orbiting Saturn. She had no idea what she was doing but somehow, it didn’t matter.
Since that moment, she’s flown spaceships, mined the rocks of Saturn’s rings, trodden the surface of Mars, been kidnapped in London and cruised around the Sun on the maiden voyage of the first interplanetary space-liner. Not bad for a dress designer from Greenwich.
Now, she’s back for a new adventure, this time it’s taking place on the Moon. Or at least, she will be when I’ve finished writing it.
Here’s the blurb for Andorra Pett and the Luna Mining Conspiracy.
Something is wrong on the Moon. And it’s about to spread.
Andorra Pett and Cy are having a road trip, they’ve chosen Selenville, after all, the moon is a bit of a backwater these days, nothing much ever happens there. A bit of mining, spaceship building and solar power and that’s about it.
Or so they thought, a chance remark leads them on the trail of an audacious plot to destabilise the solar system and give control of everything in it to a criminal syndicate. A plot that is so well hidden that nobody will believe it’s possible. Which means that Andorra has to find proof, and the right person to show it to.
Time is of the essence, although she doesn’t know it yet.
Her world is about to change forever.
And, just for you, a first glance at the current version of the cover.
Here’s the start of Chapter One.
I can’t honestly say I love the moon. As far as I could see, the only good thing about being on it is that you weigh a lot less than you do anywhere else in the solar system. And that’s important. Of course, so does everyone else but it would still be nice to see a smaller number on the scales. And take a picture, without the background.
I had never visited. No that’s not true; Cy and I spent two days there, on the way from Earth to what we now have to call Oscar station. I don’t remember much about it, I was too raw over what had happened in my life to take much notice. I do recall that it was a tiny settlement, partly under a big dome and partly in a cave, a bit like on Mars. There was a mine as well, on another part of the planet but no farm to grow crops or produce breathable air.
In short, there was little in the way of atmosphere. Not that I wanted to party, I was still getting over the shock of finding Trevor with Maisie, and my decision to leave London. It didn’t really register as more than a blip, part of a dark time in my life.
Now, I was going back, for a proper visit, with Cy. I had promised him a road trip and this was it. Cy had been less than enthusiastic at the start. And that was putting it mildly.
“The Moon.” Cy was indignant, “the bloody Moon. I wait for ages, for the road trip that you promised me and you want to go to the Moon?”
We were sitting on the observation platform on Charlie station, drinking coffee and watching the worlds go by. Earth was large to our left, the Moon, brightly lit, to our right. People walked past us, ignoring the sight through the huge windows, just as they ignored the field full of cows on the other side of the walkway. Not long ago, this had been one of the wonders of the universe, what had happened to make it so boring?
“It’s perfect Cy, nobody knows us, it’s quiet.”
“Too right it’s quiet,” he was going quite red around the gills in his childish show of indignation. “And do you know why? it’s boring. Like being here. Nothing ever happens, there’s nothing to do, unless you count going to look through a window at a flag and a few bits of twisted wreckage. I thought we’d be going to Earth. I wanted to see the tribute café, I was getting all excited. I wondered if they had a Cy lookalike?”
I tried again, “but Cy, that’s the whole point. I want to go somewhere quiet, I’ve had adventures and I want a bit of peace, to chill with my friend. I don’t want to see Clive again; or be reminded by a procession of younger, skinner versions of me just how old I look. And I can save you the bother, they haven’t got a Cy. I just want to sit around, drink cheap wine and swap stories. You’re not suggesting that we go and find a crime to solve, are you?”
“Well,” he mumbled, at least he had calmed down a little, “I’m jealous of what you’ve been doing, you got up to all that stuff on Earth, then on the Solar Breeze. It feels like you don’t need me anymore. We used to make a good team.” He paused, “and whatever you think, you look OK to me.”
That wasn’t the case at all. Cy was my best friend. I valued his opinion and we had shared some adventures. Sure, since I had met Derek, we had drifted apart, what did he expect? We were only ever mates, nothing more. Anyhow, he had Greg, I could say that he kept us apart, but I didn’t. Even so, I didn’t like to see him upset.
“And you feel let out,” I said, putting my arm around his shoulder. “I’m sorry Cy. I’m sure we can find something to do in Selenville that doesn’t involve me, or even us, risking our necks.”
He ignored that, his eyes narrowed, “I’ve just realised, you want to go to the moon cos you’ll weigh less.”
Did he really think I was that vain? “I hadn’t considered it, but it’s as good reason as any,” I said.
“Either that or you want me to rescue you, one last time?” he added.
“You wanted this trip, Cy. I hope you’re not going to bitch about it all week.”
“Find us something interesting to do and I’ll keep quiet.”
When it was time to go, we headed down to the shuttle bay for the trip down to Selenville. The shuttle was empty, just us and a single stewardess. She gave us drinks and a snack, all the time avoiding eye contact. Was this a bad time to be going to the Moon? I didn’t know, Derek hadn’t mentioned anything about the place when I had suggested it.
“That’ll be nice for you,” he said, not looking up from his screen. “OLC has nothing to do with the Moon, there’re no farms there, the mining company is independent. They’re called Luna Mining or some other play on words.”
That reassured me, if Derek thought it was safe, then it was. But now, seeing the sour face of the stewardess, I was less sure that Derek had his finger on the pulse.
“Excuse me,” I said as she walked past, “is there something going on Moonside that we don’t know about?”
She stopped. “If you’re going down there, and you,” she pointed at me, “are OLC, then I would have thought you know all about it. Good luck, just don’t expect to be popular.” With a glare, she walked away.
I looked at Cy, he was shaking his head. “What have you done this time?” he asked.
I shrugged, “no idea, Derek never said, there was nothing mentioned when I booked the tickets.”
“Well, perhaps we should keep a low profile, not mention that you’re OLC and that Derek is upper management. At least I’m nothing to do with them, I just run a café.”
“Rented from OLC, on an OLC-owned platform,” I reminded him.
His face fell. “Oh, yeah, definitely low profile then, Andi.”
With luck, Andorra Pett and the Luna Mining Conspiracy will be published at the end of the year.
How far is far enough? Andorra needs to get away from her ex, but is Saturn taking it a step too far?
When Andorra’s life turns upside down, she decides on a career change. Running a diner on a mining station orbiting Saturn. It seemed like a good idea at the time…
With her best friend Cy in tow, Andorra reckons it’s the best thing for them both. A chance to start again where nobody knows them.
Trouble is, there’s a secret hidden in the café. Before they have a chance to get settled, there’s a queue of dubious characters trying to find it.
While learning to bake and get used to life in space, Andorra has a murderer to catch!
Before they strike again…
“Agatha Raisin meets Miss Marple, in Space!”
“a tale that has everything – humour, suspense, a strong but struggling heroine, a fantastic sci-fi setting, and a truly universal story.”
What do you think?
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