The Doctor will see you now… Ben Creed

Dr Noir, AKA Dr Jacky Collins breaks new ground in the latest edition of the always interesting video interview series, The Doctor Will See You Now. This time she puts Ben Creed in the spotlight – but wait… there are two people here? Correct! Because Ben Creed is the pen name of crime writing duo Barney Thompson and Chris Rickaby.

The pair met over 10 years ago on a writing course run by Curtin Brown, but the partnership was forged much more recently and resulted in the highly acclaimed City of Ghosts, set in 1950s Leningrad and featuring Revol Rossel – a onetime virtuoso violinist looking forward to a glittering future until disaster struck, who is now a humble state militia cop. It is a book described as “…a menage of Russia and music, with a protagonist haunted by the life that he could have lived.”

In this interview, Barney reveals how his studies at the St Petersburg Conservatory helped him to conjure up a sense of place and history, and explores how Slavic folklore plays its part in the sequel A Traitor’s Heart, which was published last month. Meanwhile, Chris discusses how the partnership works and why his background in advertising has come in useful as a launchpad for plot ideas. And how did they decide on the name Ben Creed? All is revealed here, so settle back and enjoy!

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