SYNOPSIS: The Flowers Of Evil.
It is the long hot summer of 1976.
Young D.C. John Bottrell arrives in Bristol to begin work on the Somerset and Avon's Special Investigations Unit under the watchful eye of his former colleague, DCI Ian Glenister. Bottrell is soon
introduced to the unit's first case. The remains of a woman have been found in a disused ice
house in the garden of a Redland mansion, the only clue to her identity being the expensive
French mackintosh which she was wearing.
Bottrell, a young detective with a passion for criminology who also possesses psychic abilities,
has inherited his mother's flat in the city. On arriving, he soon makes the acquaintance of two
women: Anne- Marie Fleur, a French teacher at the university and a local language school who
is now Bottrell's new neighbour. The other is Dr Frances Leadbetter, a psychological profiler
with whom Bottrell soon establishes a romantic bond.
The following day, Glenister and his team attend the murder scene of two West Indians whose
bodies have been discovered behind a wall in a derelict house in the Bedminster district but the
team are interrupted by a summons to Brandon Hill where the body of a young woman has
been found, dumped in a garden refuse compound. Glenister suspects that this murder may
share features with that of the cold case murder, a suspicion which is confirmed when a
second victim is found dead on the Bristol Downs.
Further investigation reveals that the murdered girl was a French student who had been attending
an English language school not far from Bottrell's residence. Meanwhile, both Bottrell and
Anne- Marie independently experience disturbing dreams and psychic phenomena. They
discuss their findings and when Bottrell investigates the history of the area he discovers that
the underlying cause may well be a gruesome murder which occurred in the house in Victorian
Suspicion for the student murder now centres upon Norman Stanton, an EFL teacher at the
language school who has made advances to one of the young women there and who, it now
transpires, has been accused of being a collector of pornography. Under duress at the
hands of Glenister's tough interviewing technique, Stanton makes a confession. Bottrell is deeply
disturbed at this outcome and, believing him to be innocent, persuades Glenister to free him, although under surveillance.
The following day another girl dies as the victim of a frenzied knife attack and Stanton is suspected of her murder. However, he is subsequently found to have committed suicide.
Meanwhile, investigations in France reveal that Isabelle, the French cold case victim, was previously married to a Frenchman called Henri Fleur and when Bottrell’s colleague, Thomas, travels to Normandy to interview him, he finds that she had an affair with a Bristol painter called Jack Slade. Suspecting Slade may provide a clue to her murder, he returns to England to interview him.
In a final dramatic twist, Bottrell realises the true identity of the serial killer.
A crime novel, comprising a fast- paced narrative, "Flowers of Evil" features the
Cornish detective, John Bottrell.