Two Roads, an imprint of John Murray Press, has acquired author, screenwriter and playwright David Ashton's Inspector McKevy series, based on the popular and long-running BBC Radio 4 drama, "McLevy".
Two Roads will relaunch The Shadow of the Serpent, Fall from Grace, A Trick of the Light, and Nor Will He Sleep in May 2016. Set in Victorian Edinburgh, the series follows Inspector James McLevy in his pursuit of justice. The Financial Times praised how “Ashton impeccably evokes Edinburgh so vividly that you feel the cold in your bones”.
Lisa Highton, publisher at Two Roads publisher, also acquired two novels by Ashton in a new series, The Jean Brash Mysteries, based on one of the characters in the McLevy series, Jean Brash, the owner of a bawdy house in Edinburgh, keeper of secrets and equal partner to McLevy. The first book in the series, The Mistress of the Just Land, will be published in September 2016.
Highton said: “I’ve long admired David’s work and I’m pleased to bring McLevy to a new life at Two Roads. I’m particularly delighted to be able to launch the Jean Brash Mysteries – Jean’s a wonderfully vivid character, rising above the restrictions of her time and I’m eager to see where she takes us all.”
Ashton said: “Jean Brash is a woman so far ahead of her own time that she could step out of the Victorian age into this one without skipping a heart beat. She is her own creation, not really mine and, thanks to Two Roads, I have the chance to do her justice. I’d better - otherwise there will be hell to pay.”
Two Roads acquired world rights in The Inspector McLevy series from Birlinn/Polygon (who will cease supply of the titles in January 2016) and in the Jean Brash Mysteries from Valerie Hoskins at Valerie Hoskins Associates.
Ashton, a winner of the Radio Times Drama Award, has produced 20 original plays for radio including the highly acclaimed "McLevy" series for Radio 4, which stars Brian Cox and Siobhan Redmond. He has also written extensively for television, theatre and film, including early episodes of "EastEnders" and "Casualty". He has completed 12 "McLevy: series for BBC Radio 4.